I like what I do

I’ve been working here almost two years. I was doing construction and I was also working at an outside HVAC company. Then my dad, he’s got 29.5 years working here, he told me I should apply. I did and I got it. I like what I do. I like coming to work. You get to meet a lot of new people, a lot of friendly people.

What’s the hardest part of the job?

When people are hot or cold they’re not necessarily the happiest, but it makes it all worth it when you can do what you do and fix it at the end. People are grateful and you know you helped make their day better and comfortable in a workspace.

I just started coaching baseball at Bayside Middle. I’m an assistant coach. I like it a lot. I played in college and I just missed the team chemistry. I like that a lot about here, too; it seems like one big happy family. You meet a lot of good people. I just come ready every single day and try to learn something new every day. You can always learn something new.

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I really like reading

I really like reading. I read this series here called “Dork Diaries.” When I read, sometimes it makes me imagine what if I’m there and what I would do.

Do you think you want to be an author when you grow up?

I do. I have a lot of different ideas of what I want to be. Scientist. Teacher. An artist. I want to be an author, too. A doctor. I want to be an architect. 

I just finished doing this picture at home that I worked really hard on. It’s this town where it’s really busy. There are people looking at the windows. I have someone and their baby and they have some other children. There’s also someone that’s on a tightrope that they attached to a tree in the town.

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I do a lot of running

What I like to do on the side is run. I do a lot of running. I run races. I enjoy it because it keeps me healthy and it’s just something I’ve been doing for over 20 years. I belong to a couple clubs and it’s just good social time and good events. I did a full marathon at the age of 50. I did it right here at Shamrock. I did two 20-mile runs at that point getting ready for it. I was thinking I would do another one but I don’t know. You have to get serious. You really do. You have to train and that’s hard to do because it takes a lot of your time. It’s hard because after you’ve been working eight or 10 hours. It’s tough. Summertime is tough. Normally I would run at 4:00 or 5:00 in the morning with a flashlight but now I don’t have time to cool down before I can come to work at 6:30 a.m. I just do a little three- or five-mile run in the morning, maybe every other day, just to keep tuned up. I love it. It’s my high.

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I’m making tons of books

I’m kind of like an artist person and I like to read. I’m making tons of books. My mom says I’m making too many books. I like “Skylanders,” if you know what they are. They are “Skylanders” books, and I like to make lots of them. I made a LEGO book. I have lots more books; I just can’t remember them.

When you say you are making books, are you typing them?

No. I would love to, but I have to write them. I have my notebook paper and I write it down and then I combine all those papers and just staple them. I’m starting on my life story. I’m only on chapter one. Everybody can know about my life. But, if I have any other life adventures, I’m going to make a “My Life Story: Part 2.” Because you can’t just take a book that you’ve stapled already and take another paper and staple it again. That won’t work.

Maybe, if you come back here to our school, I can bring in my life story and you can read it.

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Making my community better

Aside from teaching, my main passion is making my community better in any way that I can. Through the church, through the school, through my own children, through their friends — anything that I can do to make this community, this city, this state, this region the best that it can be, I will do. It’s our future, and we have to hold on to what we have and where we’ve come from so we can continue to have this city and country be the best place in the world to live.

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My favorite subject is social studies

My favorite subject is social studies because Ms. Lauber and all the teachers are great about telling it like a story and helping us learn about it. Like Jamestown, I learned about how they had to survive on a little bit of food coming in on boats and the Indian attacks. So they made a little fort to protect themselves from the Indians. And when I’m not at school my favorite thing to do is to do role play games with my friends. We usually use something from a class we learned and we will be different people from the stories.

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I really want to be a doctor

When I’m older I really want to be a doctor. The reason is because my dad is a doctor and my sister, she’s going to be a doctor. I really want to do it because I sometimes see these shows and I think, “Oh, I want to do that!” I don’t know why, but I just want to.

If you couldn’t be a doctor, what would you do?

Maybe being a conductor for a symphony or something. I play the violin. I’ve been playing it since July. It’s actually pretty easy. You can play different songs.

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I do love teaching

I would say, besides school, my family is the most important. My wife is a teacher at Malibu. My daughter just started kindergarten. We live in the same neighborhood as my parents and my wife’s parents. All of them are education-related in their fields. But really for me, the big thing is, I do love teaching. I never leave here feeling like: Oh no, I’ve got to go to work. It’s really something I enjoy. So I am really lucky that I have found a passion that hopefully, I’m relatively good at as well. I do like this job very much. This is certainly part of my passion in life as well besides my family.

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I cheer and do tumbling

When I’m not at school I cheer and do tumbling. I’ve been doing it since I was seven or eight. It’s competition cheer so you practice a lot, like two days a week. You practice, practice, practice and you have a competitions in places like Richmond or Washington, D.C. If you get first place and the highest score, you get a paid bid to go somewhere and sometimes you can fly to different places. I’ve been to Washington D.C., Richmond, Maryland, and some teams have flown to Indonesia. My favorite move is the back handspring. I like tumbling, but I like stunting also because you get to be in the air and do stuff. There is a flyer and bases and a back spot to catch you, but I like being in the air most of the time. I started with gymnastics. I did that for a year, but then I fell off the balance beam and I got scared. I never did it again. I moved to cheer and I like it now.

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Academics are very important to me

I’m very committed to doing well in school. Academics are very important to me because, even more than doing a sport or anything else, it’s so important to have good grades. The way you present yourself is also important. Even the most minuscule details about how you dress, how you carry yourself and your body language can effect whether you get a job.

What job do you plan to have?

Well, I’m wearing the uniform right now and I tell people it’s kind of my master plan. I want to try and become President of the United States. I feel like in joining the military you get that sense of what you’re doing, how to command people, how to speak to people and that helps you in politics to convince people of your plan.

I’m going to stay in the Navy for a time because you can’t start out early in politics, no one takes you seriously. That’s kind of an unfortunate truth. You have to stay in a long time. I feel like you have to go into some kind of legislative office. I want to go straight into an executive position because I feel like there’s a lot of animosity toward the legislative branch of anything: “Oh, they never anything done” or “Nothing ever happens.” I want to get work done.

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I am obsessed with Paris

I have always wanted to go visit the Eiffel Tower. My parents know. All my friends know. Basically everyone who knows me knows that I am obsessed with Paris. For some reason I’ve taken an interest in it. The Eiffel Tower is a really cool and tall and pretty sculpture that you can actually climb, which is nice. There are other things in Paris that are cool, too, like different foods, different types of fashion, and it’s different from the United States. So if you visited Paris you would get to visit a new culture. I love fashion. When I grow up I want to be a fashion designer and have my own business, I hope.

When are you going to go to Paris? Do you have a plan to visit?

Well, my parents said for my sweet 16, ‘You can have a party or you can go on a trip.’ So I thought, you could have a party with all your friends or you could go, maybe, anywhere in the world, if it’s reasonable. That’s what my parents say: as long as it’s reasonable and not far, far away. If I got to go on a trip I would probably chose Paris, but if I couldn’t go there, then maybe a little bit closer like Hawaii or Bora Bora.

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I started a board game club

I started a board game club here this year. We are an intramural activity. We get about 20 to 30 kids every other week to play board games. I try to have them play cooperative board games where the students have to come together for a common goal. Games like Pandemic, Legendary Encounters and Freedom: The Underground Railroad. There are also resource management games. I try to bring in games, not like the typical Monopoly, but games like Ticket to Ride, where they use a map of the United States and they have to build trains at a time like the early 20th century. It works out well. Students can come, play a game and ride the student activity buses home. We bring a snack in for them and it’s really fun.

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Lifelong fitness, lifelong service

I’m very involved with Operation Smile. When my daughter, who is now a sophomore at FC, was in first grade we started. We had this running club called Mile Madness and we changed it to Miles for Smiles after talking with others about how we could incorporate Operation Smile. And it just sort of stuck. We’re still doing it.

Our big focus is lifelong fitness, lifelong service. What can you do to be a better person? You may not be the best or the fastest runner but find something that you like to do. Find something that will keep you healthy and that will keep you active. I love teaching health. It’s kind of my passion. It’s great that it carries on with them. I have a former student who is a freshmen at Randolph Macon; she wants to be a doctor. She wrote me the nicest letter about how much I inspired her. When you’re a teacher, sometimes you don’t always get those things. It’s so nice when you have a former student write you and you think, well maybe I did make a difference in their life.

We try and give them the best part of their day, just to know that they’re loved and supported. You love to hear those stories about students and athletes who worked their way up. Somewhere, somebody along the way helped them out. You just kind of hope you can do that.

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Family time

I love spending time with my 2-year-old. Every day we’re coloring or going to the park or something educational. I read a book to him every day. We do Sesame Street every day. He knows what a trapezoid is and a semicircle. He tells me, “Mommy, I know this already.” He’s 2! It’s really funny actually. When I was in the Navy and I couldn’t spend time with him – I had watch in the middle of the night and I couldn’t see him go to bed and I couldn’t see him wake up – that’s what made it hard.

I really want to make sure he has everything that he needs – educationally, spiritually, being supportive of him. My husband is in the Navy, so there are times when he won’t be there. I just want to make sure that when he is home that we get all that family time in, that he doesn’t miss a moment. That’s mostly what I do when I’m not at work because those moments, you can’t get back. You can’t get them back.

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I like challenges

 

I have allergies. I hate them. It’s ruining my life. Last spring, I didn’t have allergies. I didn’t know of it. Sometimes you can get the cough. I got the cough, too. Me and my sister and my dad have the same allergies. My mom doesn’t have an allergy.

What about school? What do you like to do here at school?

The most part I love about school is my teacher.

What do you love about your teacher?

Well, everything! Her favorite animal is an elephant. I just love the way she likes them.

I like learning about coins. I like the quarters the best. It’s challenging. I like the challenging things about school, like tests. I like tests! And we have a test coming up! My favorite thing is my homework, too. Every time I get home, I do my homework.

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