October 27, 1985 I was born at a Naval Hospital in Groton, Connecticutt, at the submarine base. Dad was in Yokosuka, Japan when I was born. As soon as the doctors' released me, Mom bravely traveled all the way to Hawaii with a two and a half week old infant. I hope that if presented with that opportunity, I, too, could be that brave. Dad and I graced the cover of the Honolulu Advertiser when his boat pulled in to Pearl Harbor. My first public debut... I hope that I am always as humble as I was that day.
October 27, 1987 This year, on my second birthday, I am not the only member in my family. My younger brother, Tony, has been along for a few months, and I am learning to share. What could've been hard turned in to be a great blessing, as he has always been a friend and trustworthy brother. We move from Hawaii to Washington state... our first move as brother and sister. I hope that I am always worthy of my brother!
October 27, 1989 This year, as a four year, I get to begin my life long love of school. My brother had to watch and wish that he, too, could attend school. I eagerly got up to attend school. I hope that I will always face each day with such enthusiasm and excitement.
October 27, 1991 This year, I learned the fun of celebrating birthdays a real student... in kindergarten at Navy Hale Keiki School in Honolulu, Hawaii. My teacher, Mrs. Dickson, was my favorite person EVER. To this day, I will never forget standing on a desk, giving my speech as a presidential candidate, and voting (for myself!) in a 'real' voting booth. I hope that I will always be that inspiration as a teacher, and that I, as a woman, will remember the individuals who have touched my life.
October 27, 1993 For my birthday this year, I get to celebrate as a Yank in Australia. When Dad took a job as an exchange officer in the Royal Australian Navy, we got to tag along for the ride...down under! Australia will always be a place of adventure, excitement, and our first real exploration. During our two years, we had some of the most incredible experiences that a child could ever have-snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef, camping with kangaroos, watching News Year at the Sydney Harbor Bridge, and picking up some great Australian twang. I hope that as a parent someday, that I can provide opportunities for my future children, and that they may make such a lasting impression on them.
October 27, 1995 Back in the States, Mom and Dad were often asked if I was adopted, thanks to my lovely Aussie voice. Fourth and fifth grade marked distinct changes in my life, as I started to develop interests that have stayed with me today-music, softball, and a passion for reading. I hope that over the years, I will continue to take time for the things that I love.
October 27, 1997 My middle school years saw my birthday celebrated in Hawaii again....although, this time, perhaps with more style and distinction, as my Mom took me and my girlfriends to 'high tea' at Mauna Loa Hotel. While I'm sure that my middle school years were not always easy on my parents, I learned much about myself. I learned that I cared more for genuine people, and that loyalty in friends is an important trait. I hope that as I continue to make my way through life, I can maintain those standards and expectations about friendships.
October 27, 1999 My first birthday in Yokosuka, Japan was celebrated in my favorite birthday style: family dinner and slumber party with my friends. This was the year that I discovered Rich and Melissa Short, our youth group leaders in Japan. They had a lasting impact on who I am as a Christian, and my perspectives on faith and service. I cannot thank them enough for their influence and love during our three years together in Japan. I hope that I will always make my faith a priority, and service an important part of life.
October 27, 2001 This was the birthday weeks after the terrorist attack on the United States (9-11). This event had such a pointed impact on my life, as we were still living on a Naval base in Yokosuka, Japan. My high school was shut down for a week, and we didn't leave the house for a few days. The commissary (our groccery store, for civilians) was closed for 10 days, and when it finally reopened, we waited in line for four hours to buy some milk and eggs. The entire military part of the base deployed the day after 9-11, and my heart felt for the seniors that I knew, whose mothers and fathers were deployed (almost indefinitely)... they missed homecoming, prom, graduation. Life for us at that time was uncertain, scary, and yet, pulled people together in ways that was inspirational. The things of life that had seemed problematic prior to 9-11 were put into perspective. I hope that we all remember the sacrifices of those who died on 9-11, their families, our service men and women,their families, and those who have and continue to sacrifice for the greater good of our nation. We can never thank you enough.
October 27, 2003 As a senior in high school, life was certainly looking up. My family had moved to Charleston, South Carolina right before my junior year of high school. The first year there was certainly a year of culture shock, as I learned to appreciate y'all, sweet tea, rainbows, and the finer points of Southern life. I joined the high school band, and marching band consummed my life--in a good way. I had a group of people with whom I shared things in common with, and we pursued perfection as a marching band and a symphonic band. I was beginning to stress and worry about which college was the right place for me, and my list of 10 or so colleges was imprinted on my brain. But, I had friends who were wonderful, mentors (thank you, Debbie and Dave) who provided me with insight, and parents and family who were always there to celebrate the high points in the life of a high school senior. I hope that I will always cherish the momentous occasions in life, whether they are mine or belong to the people in my life.
October 27, 2004 This year, I spent my birthday as a collegiate freshman, and a new member of Sigma Sigma Sigma. After finishing rush/recruitment only a few days prior to my birthday, my emotions were still high, but I was (and still am, to this day) thankful for the immediate love and support given to me by my sorority sisters at Presbyterian College. My decision to stay in the South ultimately was one of the best decisions I have ever made. My four years at Presbyterian College gave me greater confidence in myself, further developed my leadership skills, honed my intellectual capacity, and refined me into (well, almost) a Southern lady. I hope that I will always treasure the years and individuals from Presbyterian College, and the imprints that each has made on my life, including creating and refining my fashion sense! As I jokingly tell people, I am a GIRL REFINED in the South!
October 27, 2006 Another birthday spent in a foreign country.... this time, as an exchange student at the University of Saint Andrews in Scotland. My wonderful friends threw me (and another friend) a joint costume birthday party at One Golf Place... to this day, one of the best parties that I have ever been to. Definitely worthy of a 21st birthday. Even though I was already legal to drink the UK, it was still a momentous occasion. To make things even better, a couple days later, my parents arrived in Scotland to spend a week roadtripping amongst the Scottish heather. They treated me to an intimate French restaurant, and the largest sparkler on my chocolate dessert. Seeing them halfway through my study abroad experience was just the touch of home that I needed. To this day, I am thankful for our trip through Scotland together, and the time we had. It was my first trip with them without my brother, which was certainly odd, but it was still a blast. I hope that I will always appreciate home, and my wonderful parents.
October 27, 2008 As a recent college graduate, this birthday was spent recovering from the upheaval of the previous six months. My relatively short stint in the United States Navy left me with a bum knee, and a ridiculously short haircut. So, I entered into the foray of politics, and took a job on Capitol Hill working as a staff assistant for Congressman Gresham Barrett, from SC's 3rd District. My year on the Hill taught me an appreciate for the grunts of government work, and a distinct desire to avoid a political career. The highlights of my days were borrowing books from the Library of Congress and giving tours of the Capitol to constituents and groups of school children. I hope that I will always treasure the people who work hard, and often receive little or no credit for their work. I hope that I will always know what it feels like to be employed, even if its a job that I am unhappy in.
October 27, 2009 This birthday marked the beginning of a new chapter in my life. I began my Masters of Education only a few months prior, and a long term substitute teaching position. Finally, all of my strengths and interests began to merge, and I woke up every day excited to go to work. Love was also an important part of this birthday, as only days after my birthday, Edmund proposed in Annapolis, MD. We excited entered our engagement, and began making plans for our future together. I can only imagine the mixed emotions that our parents had this year, as they watch us leave our childhood behind, and truly enter into the adult world, as we look forward to our marriage this spring. I hope that I always live my life with such passion and love.
|My brother and I touring the Sam Adams Brewery in Boston, MA|
|My wonderful parents!|
|Engagement night! <3|