As a quiet and reserved child, books were my sanctuary. I spent every free moment lost in stories of adventure, fantasy, mystery, and friendship. Never willing to miss an opportunity to dive into a book, during nighttime car rides I would read by the quick burst of light provided by street lamps as we raced past. As I grew, my love of literature was matched only by my passion for math and science. I graduated salutatorian of my high school class, but still extremely shy, I refused to speak at graduation. (My future husband was valedictorian that year and spoke eloquently enough for both of us.)
Given my enthusiasm for solving puzzles and learning about the mysteries of the universe, I went on to get advanced degrees in engineering from the California Institute of Technology and Stanford University. During this time, I was forced to overcome my fear of public speaking in order to give talks to hundreds of people on my graduate research in space propulsion. After obtaining my PhD, I had the privilege of working as a research scientist for the United States Air Force where I developed and ran computer models to simulate electric propulsion devices for spacecraft.
Although I still consult for the Air Force occasionally, the bulk of my time is now spent homeschooling and enjoying life with my four kiddos, hubby, playful pup, and cuddly cat. I share some of our learning adventures on my blog, Research Parent. If I’m not engrossed in a book or actively learning alongside my kids, I can often be found hiking, journaling, knitting, taking pictures, or sneaking chocolate when my kids aren’t looking.