Brenda Sodt Marshall


Step right into the world of Brenda Sodt Marshall, also known as Bee, a name that buzzes with energy and fun, thanks to her friends! Her kids simply call her mom, and Chuck, her partner in all things life and beer, fondly calls her cutie. Her childhood nickname of Brennie Boo-Boo has thankfully faded with time, replaced by the shorter and sweeter “Bren.” She once considered the name Franchesca for a dash of exotic flair, but knowing everyone would just shorten it to Fran or Franny, she stuck with Brenda.

Brenda Sodt Foster

Storyteller at Heart

For several decades, she was an influential force at the University of Michigan, trusted with the freedom to organize, direct, and manage. Now, she is focusing that experience and dynamic energy on Life In Michigan. But there’s a twist – she’s now funneling it into projects that ignite her passion and showcase her storytelling prowess. It’s a thrilling new stage in her life, one brimming with inspiration and the art of storytelling.

Michigan Adventure List

Brenda’s got a wish list that dances as freely as her spirit, and she’s been checking off adventures with the zest of a champion. From dog sledding through snowy landscapes to basking in the Northern Lights’ celestial dance, she’s embraced it all. She’s visited a Native American Trail Marker Tree and sailed on a tall ship, riding the waves. And if given a chance, she’d gladly dip her toes into the realm of time travel.

Michigan Beer Enthusiast

A true Michigander, Brenda’s a craft beer enthusiast, thanks to Chuck’s introduction on their first date at a brewpub. Now, she can’t imagine a life without him or a pint of craft beer. Fair warning, though, she’s been known to enjoy her beer a bit too much, leaving her with a beer belly and a need for new pants.

Wilderness Wanderer

Brenda is a bona fide enthusiast of all things outdoors, with a particular fondness for our feathered friends. Be it trekking on a Michigan trail, taking a brisk walk in the crisp morning air, or simply lounging on her deck, she savors the outdoors. She can often be found trying to identify birds flitting and chirping in their natural habitat. She cherishes the warmth and crackle of a good campfire, though the prospect of sleeping on the unforgiving ground doesn’t quite spark joy. If only there were camping tents equipped with real beds – she’d be the happiest camper on the planet!

Best Friend

Chuck is her best friend, beer-drinking partner, and the organizer of her somewhat messy life. He loves her dearly, even when she leaves a trail of clothes on the floor. He might not understand her unique clothes organizing system (dirty on the floor, clean on the chair), but she likes to think that her ADHD has been a good exposure therapy for his OCD.


She is the mother of two beautiful young people. They are all grown up now, but this is how she likes to remember them.


Avery her oldest, once made her laugh so hard by declaring, “Stop talking, Mom. I know everything. Where are my shoes?” that she might have peed her pants just a little. He’s a tenacious, beautiful soul who, when he sets his mind to something, can’t be stopped – not even by his mom.

Her daughter Izzi, known as the fiery dragon, is two years younger and a challenger like no other. Brenda suspects Izzi may have inherited that fiery gene from her. With her intuitive, kind, and generous nature, Izzi has a special place in Brenda’s heart.

And let’s not forget about Larry, the handsome dog who loved sleeping on the couch and running more than Brenda did. He’s no longer with them, but his spirit lives on in the many pictures Brenda took of him.


So there you have it, a glimpse into the fun, adventurous, and slightly chaotic life of Brenda!