I have three sisters, and also a large extended family. My dad’s side gets together once a year for a camping trip and there are usually 50 or 60 of us. With all girls, my dad needed at least one tomboy, and quite frankly he ended up with four. I have great memories of building forts and wrenching on cars with my dad. When I was growing up my grandparents had a little beach shack in Cayucos where we would spend holidays and summers, so SLO has always felt like home to me.
I grew up in Salinas, yes the salad bowl of the world. I made my way up to northern California, living in the town of Mendocino and then Arcata where I met my now husband Craig. After 40+ straight days of rain (yes, we were building an ark) I decided that SLO was the right climate for me. I moved here when I started at Cal Poly, Craig made the move a few years later, and we both feel very fortunate to call SLO home. Craig and I do miss the redwoods and the rivers, he was big into salmon fishing (yum! He bbq’d a fresh caught fish for our first date) and we spent a lot of time during the summers rafting and swimming.
Now our days our filled with sunny weather activities, hiking, back-packing, and tending to our fruit trees and veggie garden. The love of our life is our 100-year old house, we have big dreams to restore it to its original craftsman glory. So far we have focused on the yard (it takes a few years to get good apples!) and we are in the planning stages for what we’d like to accomplish on the inside.
I try to fit in some form of physical activity (OK, exercise) every day, it is my “me” time and my mental break from the rest of life. My go-tos are swimming, yoga, dance, and riding my bike (yes the commute to work counts). I also spend my free time in the kitchen, I love to cook and eat, and I cooked in a couple restaurants while I was in school. My mom has a great picture of me as a little girl standing in front of the stove on a step stool making breakfast for myself, so I guess I’ve always been a fan of the Cal Poly “learn by doing” motto. Craig and I have been experimenting making hot sauce with our home grown peppers so if you like the kind of food that can burn a hole through your spoon then let’s talk. I think I burned off a few taste buds when we were in Thailand, we ate plenty of meals that left my eyes watering and my forehead dripping.
Questions not necessarily in order of importance:
Describe what you do at WG:
Play with spreadsheets. I have been known to exceed the Excel limit of 1,048,576 rows.
What are you involved in outside WG?
Organizations – Central Coast African Rhythm and Dance. I’ve been dancing with them for about 6 months now and I am hooked. Trying to undertake African dance has challenged my coordination more than anything else I’ve tried and it feels good to push my limits.
Service groups – Coastal Cleanup! Every day is cleanup day. Craig and I usually participate with a group that is organized by the US Forest Service on the Arroyo Seco River, one of my favorite places in the world. We have also been known to spend a Saturday morning walking to the creek and filling a garbage bag. My mom has always been a big proponent of bringing a garbage bag everywhere you go and leaving a place nicer than you found it, and it has stuck with me.
Sour cream. I eat it with pretty much everything.
Describe your dream vacation:
Any place where I can unplug, spend time outside, and preferably experience a new culture or activity.
What’s your favorite childhood memory?
Playing cards with my grandmother.
What’s your secret ability?
Name that tune.
What is the furthest away from SLO you have been?
Mentally: Backpacking in Yosemite