Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I grew up in Michigan, lived in Atlanta for 6 years, and moved to Portland 2 years ago for my husband's job. I was a competitive figure skater growing up and can hardly watch skating on television now because it makes me miss it so much. I went to Michigan State University and majored in advertising. If I could do it over again, I would have majored in nutritional science instead. I lived in Rome, Italy for a summer when I was 19, and it was the most amazing experience of my life. I've been married for 6 years to an awesome man who balances out my crazy and impulsive personality perfectly.
How many kids do you have and what ages?
My one and only, Cole, is 3. I would have loved to have had more, but it wasn't in the cards for us. I'm becoming more okay with that every day, but it's a process. Frankly, I'm not sure we could handle more than one right now anyway!
What lights you up? What do you like to do for fun? Do you have any hobbies?
I love being outside and experiencing new things and places. The world is so big and the more I see, the more I want to see. There's something about nature's beauty that makes me feel alive. I love to hike and work out, read, travel, and I'm a big wine lover. I recently started blogging on my wine adventures and tasting notes at www.passthepinot.com and there's also a Facebook page called Pass the Pinot. I try to write it in a very unpretentious and down to earth style for everyone from the occasional wine drinker to the aficionado. I think a lot of people are intimidated by wine because it can seem so stuck up, but it doesn't have to be that way!
What did you used to do before you started a family?
I worked at a few different advertising agencies on the account side. I also got way more sleep and did a lot more traveling!
What challenges have you faced recently?
Other than trying (and failing) to potty train a very strong-willed, resistant 3-year-old, I was diagnosed with an extremely rare cancer called epithelioid sarcoma in January 2013. It actually started while I was pregnant with my son, but went misdiagnosed for years. I'm happy and blessed to be cancer-free today, but it's still a part of my life that I have to stay on top of on a regular basis. You can read more about it if interested here.
Mother's Day is May 11th! Over the next few weeks we will be featuring some of our local customers who happen to be moms. Our first mom is Renae.
Are you working now?
I've recently started doing more freelance marketing work again and it feels really good to have something that's intellectual and all my own while still being home with my son. I'm also a distributor for Juice Plus+, which allows me to share with people how they can be getting more fruits and vegetables in their diets and just live healthier lives. I'm so passionate about helping others with health and nutrition because of my experience with cancer. I also serve as the Oregon State Chapter Leader for the Sarcoma Foundation of America (SFA), which is a volunteer position that strives to raise money and awareness for sarcoma cancer in Oregon. Last August, I hiked Mt. St. Helens as a fundraiser for SFA with a few friends and my husband we raised over $6,000!
What is your favorite piece of jewelry and why?
My favorite piece of jewelry is from Andrea's inspiration collection and it says "faith". It's a daily reminder for me to just have faith that things are going to be okay even if that doesn't seem possible at times. Life has a way of surprising us with things we can't even imagine, both good and bad, but having faith is what gives me courage. I'm so grateful to Andrea for donating a portion of the sale of each necklace to the Sarcoma Foundation of America. I am always getting tons of compliments on this necklace too. My dad and I gave my mom one that said "love" for Christmas because she inspires us both with how much love she has to give.
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