Ten Fun Things About Jill

(that you probably didn’t know)

  1. My first job was feeding baby calves. Our parents had us “helping”, and then one day, we realized we were actually “working”.  (To this day, none of us know exactly how that transition happened.)
  1. I believe high school English teachers are important people in aspiring writers’ lives.
  1. My college dormitory had a higher population than my hometown.
  1. I spent a summer interning in Washington, DC, and now share my love of the city by touring it with international exchange students.
  1. I have lived in Spain, Argentina and Brazil—and happily return to all of them whenever I can.
  1. My first internationally published piece of writing was in a international hog magazine.
  1. Before a job took me to Vermont, I was only vaguely aware that it was somewhere in the northeast of the U.S.
  1. My first summer of gardening, I carefully tended a plant for a full three months… before I realized it was a weed.
  1. After an unexpected population explosion of 37 baby rabbits, I now know how to correctly identify male and female bunny parts. (I believe there is a story to be written from that experience!)
  1. My niece says to tell you “Aunt Jill is funny.”
author photo attempt

Why Write a Book?

I have always liked to read and write.  When we three sisters were small, our mom complained about taking us into the library.   No one would talk to her on the way home; all of us were completely engrossed in our books.  I was routinely chastised to “turn off the lights” because I would stay up late, reading by flashlight.  I clearly remember my father admonishing us to “put down those books, get outside and work!”

On my quiet, not-to-be-admitted-out-loud bucket list, I did have a goal of writing a book. In real life, though, I concentrated on my other love of international education, raising three kids and trying to be a good wife to a very patient and supportive husband.

COVID-19 has changed so many things.  Until there is a vaccine, it seems international travel, courses and exchanges will not return, and my business is pretty much shut down.

But at the same time, I am grateful to recognize the silver lining in all this.  I would not have had the time to write a daily entry—nor would I have thought to look for the good that happened because of a pandemic.

I would not have sent it to the local newspaper, nor started a blog on my website.  I would never have dared to dream of compiling all this into a book, and finally facing that long-held goal.

It seems only fair to share some photos of our dogs, since they feature prominently in many in Silver Linings.   

They are Sofie (left), a 11 year old Yellow Lab, and Aspen (right), a Bernese Mountain Dog puppy who came to us the end of February 2020.

Our family–and many friends–also fondly remember our Rottweiler, Abby.  She was our family’s fourth Rottie, and brought joy to everyone for nearly 12 years, from July 2008 through February of 2020.   You can read all about Abby–and see a video of her– in the blog post, “Surrounded by Love.”