As a child, I loved art. I loved looking at art. I loved creating art. And I still DO! Never did I think that I would have a career where art was so vital and healthy for me AND others to create!
So the story goes on and my heart with art led the way. I received my Bachelors of Fine Art (BFA) in Art Education, with concentrations in psychology and art history, from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana in 2000. To back up the story just a bit, I started college with psychology being my major. As odd as this sounds, I did not like the psychology classes in undergrad. I did not like the way they were taught, the material was so, so. So I switched to art. It was after switching to art did I get introduced to Art Therapy. I had NEVER heard of such a thing! How cool is this? Combing my love of art and psychology...that was it, I was in.
Upon graduation from U of I, Champaign-Urbana, I went to graduate school for my MA in Art Therapy. I studied and graduated from a teeny, tiny college in Santa Fe, NM, Southwestern College. Yes, all the way in New Mexico. I had determined that it was my time to leave the mid-west for a bit and experience a different part of the country. It is my story of going to school in what was a two room school house. They specialize in MA's in counseling and art therapy, thus the reason for the size. An amazing education and experience! And the way psychology was taught was incredible and impacting.
My internship for graduate school was completed at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, working primarily with bone marrow transplant patients. Upon completing my internship I moved back home to the Northern Suburbs of Chicago. Over a span of nearly 5 years I worked with children, adolescents, and their families, with the largest population being foster children/adolescents. Life moved me to Nashville for about a half a year and then back north to Milwaukee (2008) where I have resided ever since.
In my years of experience, I continue to learn and grow in my expertise and explore different niches of therapy. I have had training with Dr. Dan Hughes exploring attachment therapy for children and adolescents that have difficulties bonding. Especially those that have been adopted, were in foster care, or have had a disruption during the attachment process. During my years in Illinois I received my certificate in school counseling. This has helped me with numerous parents in finding the best resources for their child in the schools. Most recently I have grown an interest in bereavement, leading me to receive my certificate in grief counseling.
Neither my husband, nor I are from Wisconsin, but both have grown to love it and consider it home. We have friendly bantering with friends over sports, like the Big Ten and my devotion for the Bears (sorry PackLand). I love my Cubs, but you will find me at Brewers games cheering them on, as I love them too. I continue to create my own artwork and I LOVE to travel. We don't have two-legged children, but we do have 2, four-legged ones. Their names are Otis and Harley. We love dogs a great deal and have devoted our time and home to fostering dogs for the Wisconsin Humane Society. Family is incredibly important to us. We often have family and friends coming to Milwaukee for a visit, or we find the time to visit them. I can't say for certain that I have a favorite food, but I do know that it is in my family genes that I can eat pizza once a week without flinching. Coffee and tea are my preferred drinks, I can pass on the pop, or as they say here, soda. Oh, and I do love chocolate!
My babies...Oscar (2001-2015), Otis, and Harley