For someone who loves attention and loves to talk, this was incredibly hard!
My name is Samantha, but I go by Sammee, always have. There was a moment in 5th grade when I tried to rebrand and go by Samantha and it just never stuck, it has always felt too adult.
I was born in Grand Junction but grew up in Bayfield, Colorado. It is a small, beautiful town in southern Colorado. Some activities that my family loved doing were camping and hiking, playing with animals (we were all in 4-H at one point), working outside, and visiting family. The majority of my family lived within 2 hours of our location so it was easy to have family reunions and get-togethers for birthdays and things. I loved my childhood and the time I spent with my family in that teeny tiny town. My parents and my family have taught me so much, but among the greatest are the value of hard work and how important family is.
I am 28 and have lived in Idaho for almost 10 years, which is way longer than I thought I ever would. I moved up here to attend BYU-Idaho in the fall of 2012 and never left. While I was attending school I worked at Texas Roadhouse in Idaho Falls, which is where I met my husband!
In 2015, I graduated with a Bachelors in Elementary Education and completed my student teaching in Ammon. My husband and I got married in July of 2015 and then I started my job at the same school I student taught at. This is the end of my 5th year at that school. To claim some sense of privacy for myself and my students, I would prefer to keep the school and the grade I teach private. (So if you know me, try to keep that private as well!)
I love teaching. I think it is so fun and important. There are definitely hard days and about a gazillion things that I would change, but there are even more things that I cherish and love. I have always wanted to get my Master’s degree, I just never knew what to get it in. And last year I found a program that stood out to me and so I took a leap and applied! I am about to begin my third semester at the University of Nevada-Reno to get my Master of Science in Equity and Diversity in Education.
Over the last five, years my passion for equity, diversity, anti-bias, and anti-racist teachings have grown as my knowledge has grown. My goal is to be the best teacher I can be for all students and to model the characteristics of good citizenship and humans.
I really, super love amusement parks and water parks. My husband and I went to Walt Disney World on our honeymoon and it was so much fun. Growing up that was the only real vacation we could all agree to so I have been a couple of times and I love it always, no matter how old I am. We have also gone to Disneyland, Lagoon, and Universal Studios California. My husband is from California, so we have also been out there a couple of times to visit family and friends! I do wish we could travel more. I have never been outside of the United States and would absolutely die if I could go to Italy. One day, my friends, one day!
This is East Idaho Moms, so I guess I should talk about how I am a mom! We have one child and she was born in October 2019. Now she is 18 months old and is seriously so much fun.
Things that I have learned since having my own child: nothing will go according to plan, no one knows what they are doing, babies are confusing, and boobs are magic.
I no longer use my magical boobs, but the rest of those statements are just as relevant now as they were in the beginning. My most favorite part is seeing all of her new skills and tricks every day. As someone who loves learning and watching that learning process, it has been so cool to see it in action multiple times a day. My least favorite part was definitely the belly rub that literally no one tells you about after you give birth. SERIOUSLY, we should be warning people about this. I have also loved watching my husband be a magnificent partner and father through these new changes. We have definitely rocked it so far.
I have no idea if I will be able to inspire, entertain, or enlighten anyone, but I am honored to be here. My writings will primarily be on anti-racism subjects. I come to you as a white woman in a majority white area. I cannot come to you speaking from the Black experience, and I will not pretend to know how that feels or is in the slightest. My goal when writing is to lend the knowledge that I do have from listening to people with those experiences and create a space where everyone is safe, has the same opportunities, and is represented.
It really will take a village (the whole village), my friends.