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I came to the Washington, D.C. area in 1988 to be a nanny, a job that I loved very much and did for 4 years. I worked for two different families, both of which were filled with fantastic people. I grew very attached to the children and I loved to think of them almost as my own. Being a nanny also afforded me with time to play volleyball...and a lot of it! I even had the opportunity to play a season of semi-pro beach ball! What a blast! Too bad "real life" and nagging injuries got in the way. But it was fun while it lasted!

You may wonder how I ended up leaving Chattaroy, Washington ( a small town about 20 minutes north of Spokane) to go all the way across the country to the other Washington to be a nanny. Well, when I was in my first year of college, I worked on the campus newspaper as an editor and also as the advertising manager. We kept getting all these classified ad postings for nanny positions. My instructor asked me to do a story on the surge of nanny agencies in our area. So when I went to the first couple of interview sessions, I became interested for myself.

At the time, I was kind of burning out on college life and also on Spokane. I also felt the need to get away from my family, as we all do at 19. My goal at that time was to become a journalist. And I thought, what better place to learn the craft, but in Washington, D.C. So after that assignment for the campus paper, I decided that being a nanny was what I wanted to do, thinking I would only do it for a year and then go back to school and continue on to be a journalist. I loved being a nanny so much I did it for 4 years instead!

So, after my stint as a nanny, instead of going into journalism, I became a photographer by trade and was somewhere in the field for about 7 years. I had taken classes in high school and college, was one of the yearbook photographers, was a teacher's aid for the photography department and also did the school newspaper. Sometimes, I swear, I felt like a mushroom...always in a dark-room! So it just seemed a natural progression to go into photography for a career. And besides, I really loved it. It let me be creative and make money at the same time. What more can you ask for!?

I started out running 1 Hour mini-labs for a local company in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C. And coming from a background of dealing with children, I ended up specializing in childrens' portraiture for Lifetouch Portrait Studios...the company that runs all the JCPenney Portrait Studios. I was with Lifetouch for nearly 4 years. I managed 3 different studios for them before taking some time away and trying a new company (which didn't work out) and then decided to come back to Lifetouch, mostly part-time until a back injury side-lined my photography career. I truly enjoyed doing photography and still do some as a hobby. I'll never give it up completely!

Now, mostly because of the back injury, I stay at home and run our household. I also volunteer my time to designing and maintaining the alumni website for my high school. (Which may be how you found this here little corner of the web in the first place!) I keep busy with travel and just day to day living.

As for the personal part of my life, I am married to a wonderful/crazy/slightly dorky and all-together fun guy named Jonathan Reed, whom I met, of all places, on the internet. He's a computer programmer and database engineer working in the government sector. At the time I met him, he was commuting back and forth to Chicago from D.C. working on designing and installing the city's computerized 911 emergency dispatch system. He would log into a local bulletin board to keep in touch with his friends, who all live in this area. After quite a while of chatting back and forth, we decided to meet and hang out during one of his bi-weekly trips back to Northern Virginia. We hit it off immediately and have been together ever since...sheesh, since 1996!(boy time flies!). By the way, he stopped going to Chicago about 5 months after we started dating, so YES, we do live together!

We are currently renting my in-law's house while they are on assignment in Germany for the next few years. We hope to buy a home of our own when my husband's parents move back. We are planning to fill it with a few kids, too! Right now, we just raise our 4 insane cats, who are always a great source of entertainment and hairy clothing.

I hope this tells you a little about me. You can always just ask about anything I forgot to mention!

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