Beautiful Voices is our ongoing blog series that highlights inspiring, empowering women. Our most recent Beautiful Voice is Jane Kuntz. See what she says when Annmarie asks her some questions about her own personal beauty.
Jane grew up in post World War 2 England. She had a special love for the surrounding Yorkshire moors. She and her friends rode ponies and had lots of horseback adventures there. In her late teens, she began doing Peace Corps every summer and developed a fascination for other cultures. She came to America in 1980, where she met and married her husband Rick. They have three living children—Carlos and Roque, adopted from Guatemala, and Hannah, born to them. Jane's professional training includes degrees in education and theology. She is a certified Consulting Herbalist and Life Style Coach. She has worked in several mission fields and currently volunteers for Border Collie Rescue and Feral Cat Rescue. She now lives in Maine where she treasures the ocean and islands, lakes and rivers, and mountains which come down to the sea.
Who do you feel you are today?
I am a 71-year-old wife, mother, and grandmother. I have a hard time accepting my age because I am active and adventurous. My concept of a seventy-year old woman is a grandma in a rocking chair, knitting, with a contented kitty at her feet. I have a young border collie and we romp through the woods together—rain, snow, or shine. I am an herbalist, I grow a lot of herbs and wildcraft others, I make remedies to help family and friends. I also teach herbal healing and do a few consultations.
Who or what is your biggest inspiration?
At age sixteen I became a Christian. From that day the word of God and my relationship with Jesus have been my biggest inspiration. I am also inspired daily by my patient, wise, and caring husband whose huge heart ministers to all he comes in contact with. I am inspired in a different way by our daughter. She is a courageous world traveling activist, working to help women and children in disadvantaged countries.
What was your biggest challenge and how did you overcome it?
My biggest challenge was the death of our infant son Elisha. Losing Elisha, totally unexpectedly, was the worst experience I have ever gone through, I did not sail through it quickly or easily. It took me years, and even now, it is a big pain in my heart.
If money was no object what would you be doing?
If money were no object I would buy an old characterful cottage on one of the Maine islands and would spend a good portion of the summer there. I grew up in England with a seafaring heritage—my mother's father and uncles were fishermen and manned the lifeboat, so I am always happiest close to the ocean. There is something extra romantic and magical about an island.
What's the best piece of advice you've ever received?
I worked for a couple of years with troubled teens and asked a pastor how I could best influence their lives for good. His answer was, “Never have to put it into words! LIVE life, LIVE love, LIVE peace, LIVE joy, LIVE hope.”
Where and when do you feel most at peace?
I feel most at ease at home on an evening that my husband is home, and we can just relax, our dog and cats snuggled happily beside us. Oh dear, I am beginning to sound like that 70-year-old woman!
What does beauty mean to you?
Beauty to me must come from the inside. I am not impressed by the heavy make-up Hollywood brand of beauty. Yes a simple becoming hairstyle and a glowing complexion help, but without the beauty of character, it is just nice hair and skin, not real beauty!
What makes you feel beautiful?
I feel beautiful when I do little nurturing things to take care of my health and appearance—an herbal soak, a facial steam or pack, a skincare routine with lovely products.
What are your words of wisdom to other beauties out there?
As I look around I see women copying a look. I am not into fashion or movies so I don't know who it is they are copying, but I see a lot of women with these painted on looks, and they are not themselves. I would like to encourage each woman, young or old, to believe in her own personal beauty, to seek for inner beauty, and nurture her outward beauty. Do not think for one moment that you need to cultivate an image of some famous person, each woman is precious and unique just as she is!
Isn’t she beautiful?
Annmarie Skin Care
(If you’re interested in being featured as one of our Beautiful Voices, please email us at [email protected])