Everybody Out was born out of my own love for outdoor and environmental education, as well as some challenges (and triumphs!) we have faced with my middle son, who has an Autism Spectrum Disorder.
I have been working in the field of outdoor education since the age of 16, when I interned at a local outdoor school. I pursued a degree in Forestry from Virginia Tech and graduated with my BS in 2003 and my MS in 2005, taking every chance I had to be involved in teaching outdoors along the way: from wilderness camp, to 4-H camp, to local talks and clinics. In more recent years, I have worked in geospatial education, taught map reading and map use to adult students, and designed geography education materials used in 4-H. I also have a certificate in the Montessori Method for Primary (ages 3-6).
My husband Wes, and I met while mountain biking and also enjoy camping and rock climbing together in our spare time. When we became parents, we also committed ourselves to sharing our love of the outdoors and learning about nature with our children – even if it meant shorter hikes and even shorter climbing days. I also spent time homeschooling my two boys, using outdoor time as a cornerstone of our learning process.
One unexpected effect of this time has been seeing the many benefits for our children and especially our child with ASD - we feel certain that time spent outdoors has helped to boost his self-esteem, physical health, and inborn creativity.
My desire is to share those experiences (and benefits!) with other kids, young adults, parents, and siblings in a safe, fun, and inclusive way. I hope you'll join us in partnering to get outside and grow!