1. Most of my students think that I've wanted to work in education all my life, but that's actually not true. For a brief moment as a child, I thought I would have a very different career. At my kindergarten graduation, we all had to stand on a stage and say what we wanted to be when we grew up. I had planned to declare my future as a teacher, but the boy before me said that he wanted to be an endocrinologist. I couldn't be upstaged, so I decided I needed to make my career sound more interesting. At the last minute, I got to the microphone and announced, after a long pause, that I wanted to be a "cowgirl". Once the eruption of laughter settled, I decided to stick with education and have worked professionally with students of all ages before finding my home at Siena.
2. I'm related to a model...sort of. My grandfather lived next door to Norman Rockwell, who illustrated the covers of the Saturday Evening Post for many years. One day, Mr. Rockwell knocked on my grandfather's door, asked him to pose in uniform, and the rest is history. "The Runaway" is now one of the most recognizable covers that Rockwell designed, and my grandfather has spoken around the world about the cover and its history. We recreated it as a family in the early 2000's (see the side-by-side below).
3. I spent a lot of time with my grandparents as a child, and my grandfather always taught me to look down in parking lots in the hopes of finding spare change. To this day, if you see me in a parking lot, I'm probably looking down keeping my eye out for pennies like he trained me to (I promise I'm not ignoring you!).
4. I'm not big into birthday celebrations, but I've spent the last few birthdays in some pretty cool places with my mom including at a taping of The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon in New York, eating Pastéis de Belém in Lisbon, cruising Loch Lomond in Scotland, and exploring the Palace of Versailles near Paris. I have to be honest though, I'm really looking forward to some homemade cake this year.
5. Speaking of cake, I love to bake. I'm not skilled at decorating, but I love to make pastries, breads, cookies, really anything that's sweet. My go-to favorite recipes come from Joanne Chang, who owns Flour Bakery in Boston (if you know, you know). I highly recommend to anyone going to Boston that they make a stop there. It's well worth the calories.
6. My favorite animal is a penguin, hands down, for three reasons: 1) They survive in some of the harshest climates in the world, so they are the epitome of strength, 2) The female penguins are tasked with getting food for their young while the males keep the chicks warm and I love a species that does not conform to stereotypical gender roles, and 3) They're classified as a bird because they "fly" under water, and I just think that's the coolest thing.
7. I was always a very musical child. I started playing piano when I was four, and began competing in state piano competitions when I was in fifth grade (the first song I competed with was Beethoven's Fur Elise). I also took up the flute, and played both through college. I still play both now, especially when I'm stressed; there's no better feeling than angrily slamming your hands on piano keys when you need to let out some tension!
8. Unfortunately, my musical ability did not translate to athletic ability. I tried many sports, but soccer has to have been the most epic fail. The third or fourth year I played, I scored my first goal. I was so excited, but my coach was really angry and I didn't understand why. As it turns out, you're supposed to switch directions after the half. The plus side was that I scored the only goal of the game, but the down side was that I scored on my own goalie. I never lived down the nickname "Wrong Way Emily" after that experience.
9. One of my favorite things to do when I travel to a beachy area is look for sea glass. My mom and I started picking up pieces at Ogunquit Beach in Maine 15 years ago, and now whenever we're near a body of water we instinctively crouch down in the rocks or sand and look for the glimmer of the glass. The most interesting pieces I have in the "collection" (which I'll someday use to make something large and decorative) came from the beach from that scene in "Chariots of Fire" in St. Andrew's, Scotland.
10. My pride and joy is my almost two-year-old pup Cahlie (below). She's a lab/retriever/hound mix, and is equally smart and stubborn. She's currently an AKC Canine Good Citizen, and she's hoping to be a therapy dog once we can get back into training classes post-COVID.