Back in October 2014 I was inducted into the Rockford Public Schools Hall of Fame. WHAT!?!??! Still sounds
funny typing that. Having grown up in Rockford, I couldn’t have been more surprised and honored to find out
that my past teachers had been tracking my jewelry company and were the ones behind the scenes pushing for
my induction.

It’s been over 10 years since I graduated and the sense of déjà vu when I made my drive to school that Friday
morning was overwhelming. Walking up to the front door I felt like it was my first day of high school all over
again. Dry mouth, sweaty palms, and a sense of dread that I had chosen the wrong outfit…but the moment I
walked in the door there was a smiling staff member waiting to greet me. I spent the day talking with students,
about my days as an RHS art student, my current design process, and sharing some things I’ve learned since
graduation.

Saturday night was the big ceremony and dinner at Fredrick Meijer Gardens. The group I had the pleasure of
being inducted with was a lineup of scientists, philanthropists, and long time educators – a humbling group of
individuals to say the least! I went back and forth on what exactly I wanted to say after accepting the award,
and while I didn’t get a chance to say everything here’s a little excerpt:

“First, I need to apologize to my parents…I’m sorry that every paintbrush you ever owned was ruined by my
little hands. I’d like to confess that there is a nail polish stain on the carpet under my bed from an art project
gone wrong. I’m sorry for painting on my walls and when I ran out of room painting on the hallway walls as
well. Please forgive me for breaking the sewing machine over and over again. And more importantly –
THANK YOU…for understanding at a young age that I needed 3 types of scissors, the 120 box of crayons because
life without Burnt Sienna and Jungle Green would simply be drab. Thank you for encouraging me to build,
create, and make messes…ohh and almost forgot, thank you for the glitter.”

I flew back to Boston that Sunday with a happy heart and mind full of inspiration. Thankful for this wonderful
weekend and everyone involved in it.