Meet Julie!

Always a bit awkward to get my head around writing my own “bio”…

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Okay so first and foremost, I am a mom to two teenage daughters, Rachel and Caroline, who keep me laughing, honest, and humble. Only those of you who have had a teenage daughter will fully grasp the “humble” part of that. 😉 I strive to be the best version of myself so they have a worthy role model and am most definitely a work in progress. Perfectionism in my house—the struggle is real, so currently learning to embrace challenges as opportunities in real-time rather than hindsight.

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It was Rachel’s toddler-hood that I found myself Googling certain traits to understand my daughter, and stumbled upon the Social Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG) website, and immediately recognized my little girl in the bullet points and articles. It gave me the frame of reference, a context for understanding, which became all the more important when she entered school and then when my dynamite stick of Caroline was born. Eventually, their experiences inspired me to seek out my Gifted Endorsement, and I jumped back into my teaching career from which I had taken a 10-year hiatus.

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Being an “underdog” person has always been much of what drives me—in my early career and now. With six years in the field of gifted, I consider this group of kiddos one of the least understood and most underrepresented sub-populations in education. It is such an honor and joy to work with them and their families—the stories of laughter and triumph are endless.

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At the start of my career, I taught 7th Grade Social Studies. I had no intention of teaching middle school, let alone staying there—-but at that time, Social Studies teachers were a dime a dozen, so you took the job if you got an offer. My sights were set on my district’s high school, but then I fell in love with the craziness that can only be found among middle school students. My first class of kiddos are pushing 40 now, so that’s always funny—I still see their little 7th Grade faces when I bump into them and love hearing about who they are today.

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What else can I tell you about myself? I can talk to anyone…”never met a stranger” kind of thing. I have been known to talk a lot, too. (So does Lizzy, though, so I am betting her intro will also be longer than our agreed “short”).  I love deep conversations, books of a wide variety, people who radiate sunshine, authentic connection, and publicly laughing this really loud laugh that I can’t help but humiliates my children. I have a horrible memory yet remember the oddest things, can’t decide if I love the ocean or mountains more, and have a severe case of wanderlust. It’s currently summer, and Lizzy and I are still motoring on with work, so there’s that, too.

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Up Next: Lizzy!

 

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