Lisa McKay

Boats on Mekong

I am five months into our time in Port Vila now, and it’s been almost six months since Cyclone Pam devastated large parts of Vanuatu. All things considered, we’re settling in well. One thing that’s caught me by surprise during this move, however, is how much I think back to Laos. We spent five years […]


10 Ways Teachers Can Support Third Culture Kids

by Lisa McKay on June 24, 2015

10 Ways Teachers Can Support Third

I was talking to the principal of an international school recently, and he had never heard the term “Third Culture Kid” (TCK). This really surprised me. By now, after more than three decades of research dedicated to understanding the impact of growing up globally mobile, I had assumed that those working with TCKs would at […]



It’s been five weeks since we said farewell to the house in Laos that we were still calling “new home” and boarded a plane to “Nana Papa home” in Australia. It’s less than a week now until we get on another plane that will take us to “ocean home” in Vanuatu—a place the kids and […]



After we got married and moved overseas five years ago, my husband, Mike, introduced a concept that initially horrified me. He suggested that every year around New Years we name one thing we’d like each other to work on in the upcoming year. In essence, he proposed that we assign each other a New Years […]


How To Make A Long Distance Relationship Work: 50 Best Tips

Before we moved to Laos, I worked full time as a stress-management and resilience trainer for humanitarian workers. During those years I saw first-hand the pressure that living overseas places on people and relationships. After my husband and I moved overseas ourselves, I decided to focus my energies on supporting relationships—particularly long distance relationships—and last […]

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Please Don’t Feed The Monks

by Lisa McKay on October 6, 2014


Tonight* my husband, Mike, and I took the little dog and walked down to one of our favorite restaurants in Luang Prabang from which to watch the sun set over the Mekong. While we were eating and watching the long-boats glide downriver in golden light, two tourists at the next table struck up a conversation […]



One of the first questions people often ask me when they learn that I’m a psychologist is, “are you practicing?” They are invariably disappointed when I tell them “no, I’m still busy with our young children, and I’m trying to start a business on the side.” Here, like many other places I’ve lived abroad, there […]


When You Second-Guess Your Life

by Lisa McKay on August 4, 2014


Last night while we were getting ready for bed, my two year old started to tell me a story. He told me this story three times in a row, getting more excited and delighted every time. Was this story about the herd of cows we’d seen blocking the road to our house that morning? Or […]


An Airport Encounter With Grace

by Lisa McKay on July 4, 2014

Image credit: (artur84)

Folks, I’m a bit in survival mode here at the moment. I’ve been without a car all week. We have an uncharacteristically grumpy, teething baby. We have a feverish two year old who only wants Mama… all the time. We have a Daddy who is leaving on Sunday for a week. And we have two […]


Help during transition

We’ve been deep in the throes of transition during the last two weeks. Just after Christmas last year we left Laos in a rush and headed for Australia so that my husband, Mike, could receive treatment for cancer. Now that he’s received the initial all-clear (hooray) we’re in the process of reassembling normal life. To […]


Book Giveaway: My Hands Came Away Red

by Lisa McKay on May 5, 2014

My_Hands_Came_Away_Red_med qual

This month, Moody Publishers has offered to give away three copies of my Christy-award-nominated first novel, My Hands Came Away Red. Below  is a little about how I came to write this novel and what I learned during the process. You can find out how to enter to win a copy of the book at […]


The Existence Of Poo (On Shame, Part I)

by Lisa McKay on April 4, 2014


Almost four years ago now, on a velvety Friday night, my husband, Mike, and I had a hot date. We’d been married a year and a half by that stage, and living in our new home-town of Luang Prabang, Laos, for three whole weeks. We decided to go somewhere special to celebrate. That somewhere was […]