Posts about 365 faces of chico - Divine Reflections Photography Blog

365 Faces of Chico -- Information and Call for Nominations

Now that I'm a little over a month into my 365 Faces of Chico project, it's time for me to take a couple of minutes to explain why I'm doing the project and exactly what the project will entail.

Summary of Purpose

To draw attention to an often unrecognized segment of the population of Chico: those who are serving.

Background and Project Details

After experiencing several significant losses in my personal life, it became a personal challenge and goal to search daily for the beauty that surrounds me. I had never noticed much of this beauty before, but I quickly began to realize how many people possess it. And most go unnoticed by the rest of the population as well. However, the results of these people's contributions have a deep impact on our community.

So, the purpose of my project is to draw increased attention to these positive contributions in the face of an ever present focus on the negative in our society. It is also my hope that seeing each face and reading each person's story will ignite a hunger in others to recognize and give thanks for amazing beauty that surrounds us in our deeply depraved world.

With these goals in mind, here are the parameters I will follow as I create my portraits:

  • I will create 365 different portraits within 365 days.
  • These portraits will be of people who are making a positive contribution to the Chico community.
  • These portraits will be of people I have never photographed before.

Call for Nominations

Do you know someone who should be recognized in this project? If so, we would like to hear from you. Please send us an email or contact us using our web form.

Posted by Crystal on March 25, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Robin - Face #40

The journey to motherhood is not unlike a fingerprint; everyone's is a bit different. However, some women face more barriers and challenges during the process than others. Robin is a beautiful, sweet spirited, and passionate mommy of two darling children. What started as one of the happiest events of her life, the birth of her daughter, turned into a battle for her life. After over 30 hours in labor Robin gave birth to a healthy baby girl. That process, however, damaged a main artery leading to her uterus. A few weeks later, Robin underwent surgery and received a blood transfusion that saved her life.

Robin now works at the Chico center for BloodSource working to recruit able donors who are willing to give a bit of their time and a little of their blood so that other lives can be saved as well.

Thank you, Robin, for taking your time to educate me about the need for blood donors and to remind me of how much beauty one person can have!

And if you have not donated blood and are qualified to do so, you really should donate soon. The next person who needs a life-saving blood transfusion might just be you.

Posted by Crystal on March 24, 2008 at 10:34PM.

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Kristina - Face #39

Kristina is my hero for the day. Why? Simply because she is a bearer of wonderful cinnamon deliciousness in a gooey, frosted ring of pleasure. That's right, she works at Chico's new Cinnabon.

Kristina is a Chico native and is currently serving a little bit of pleasure in a bun to the guests visiting the Chico Mall. Kristina is probably left in the shadows of the glorious cinnamon goodness, with patrons taking her work in the process for granted. Ah! But, Kristina, we are so thankful for all of your hard work, even if it does affect our waistlines!

Posted by Crystal on March 20, 2008 at 10:00PM.

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Valerie - Face #38

Some people are pleasant, some are perky, and some are cute. Valerie is all of the above and blushes easily to boot. Valerie has a very important job that many often overlook; she is a photo technician at a local Walgreens. Many hurriedly hand deliver or email their precious memories — caught digitally or on film — without giving the process or the people any thought. Thank you, Valerie, for all that you do and for giving me a few minutes of your time!

Posted by Crystal on March 19, 2008 at 10:38PM.

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Emily - Face #37

Bringing a little bit of Greece to Chico, Emily works at one of Chico's quaint little downtown restaurants called Sultan's Bistro. Emily has kept busy preparing Greek food at this establishment for a little over a year, and she greets each guest with a smile.

Thanks, Emily, for all of your hard work, it is deliciously appreciated!

Posted by Crystal on March 18, 2008 at 10:24PM.

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Isabelle - Face #36

So precious and sweet, Isabelle has an amazing spirit. She embodies the joy a child can bring and the joy of which all of us need to be reminded. Precious and loving, she brings hope for the future of the children of Chico.

Thanks, Isabelle, for reminding me about the beauty in the little things and to never stop being curious. We love you!

Posted by Crystal on March 17, 2008 at 11:15PM.

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Mica - Face #35

This is Mica, America's next top model. Okay, maybe he's not the next top model, but the fashions he designs would complement any model. Mica and his wife Lori recently launched their clothing business, the appropriately named Restored Clothing Company. They seek to send a positive message with their clothing, which makes them distinctively differently from a lot of fashion companies. In addition, they are donating a portion of every sale to one of several local charities.

Mica, it was great to spend some time with you and your family. Thanks for allowing me the privilege! Here is a slide show of images from your session.

Posted by Crystal on March 16, 2008 at 10:25PM.

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Blayne - Face #34

I found Blayne at the local skate park, one of his favorite places to hang out. He showed me some of his best moves, and he even demonstrated how to fall gracefully.

Thanks, Blayne, for taking time to skate for my camera.

Posted by Crystal on March 15, 2008 at 11:30PM.

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Dave - Face #33

Unless you are mechanically inclined, those like Dave who service our cars for a living are truly a gift. Dave is a husband, father, and oil technician at ProLube here in Chico. Besides being an all around nice guy, Dave has arguably the most beautiful light blue eyes we have seen in the Chico area — their light color even looks awesome in black and white!

Thanks, Dave, for giving me a few moments of your time!

Posted by Crystal on March 14, 2008 at 8:24PM.

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Kendrea - Face #32

Sweet, beautiful, powerful.

Kendrea's quiet but powerful presence helps encourage some of the female population of Chico during their workouts at the local Curves. With Kendrea flashing that beautiful smile of hers, a workout simply could not be dull. Kendrea, thank you for hanging out in the "sweat shop." Your value isn't taken for granted.

Thanks also for posing for a few pictures.

Posted by Crystal on March 13, 2008 at 11:23PM.

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Crystal - Face #31

Me.

Chico born and raised. Passionate. Artistic. Broken. Transformed. Flawed. Lover of people. Living on grace. Determined. Verbose. Funny. Traveler. Daughter. Aunt. Friend. Wife. Mother. Photographer.

Posted by Crystal on March 12, 2008 at 11:30PM.

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Bernita - Face #30

Some people have a gift for understanding math, for understanding how to teach math, and for being willing to use those skills. That describes this lovely woman.

On the other end of the spectrum, there are the students who sat through hour after countless hour of class just trying to understand the theoretically simple "logic" of adding together letters. That would have been me. But I digress.

While I personally would nominate those like Bernita for sainthood just for their willingness to tackle the aforementioned, others may take Bernita's skills for granted. Bernita is a beloved math tutor and teacher at CORE Butte Charter School. Additionally, Bernita has been described as having a soothing and melodic voice that others enjoy.

Thanks, Bernita, for being willing to tackle a difficult subject while patiently teaching difficult subjects. Ha!

Posted by Crystal on March 11, 2008 at 11:42PM.

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Mr. and Mrs. Gambone - Face #29

Having worked really hard to open their first franchise business, Mr. and Mrs. Gambone own the Noble Roman's Pizza restaurant on Mangrove. This tasty little pizza and sub shop has been open since November, and it offers their guests wonderful food and great service. To top it off, the owners are delightful, interesting people.

Thanks for the wonderful meal and for a few minutes of your time!

Posted by Crystal on March 10, 2008 at 11:38PM.

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Rachele - Face #28

Meet Rachele! Rachele is best known for her emotion, loyalty, and compassion. While she pursues her various dreams for the future, she still finds time on a regular basis to help take care of her aging grandparents. Rachele is also known to have great love and compassion for animals of almost all types. :) Thanks, Rachele, for allowing me to share a few photographic moments!

Posted by Crystal on March 9, 2008 at 11:00PM.

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Aria - Face #27

This is my newest little friend, two year old Aria. While at a local park I watched this precious little girl carefully decide on the area of the sandbox in which she would play. As she surveyed the sea of children, she noticed a pair of unattended shoes that another small child had hastily thrown to the side and forgotten about. Her brow furrowed in concern as she carefully picked up the two shoes, carried them to their owner, and placed them back down at his feet. She fully expected for him to be as concerned as she was that he have his shoes on! It was so precious, and it was a perfect example that serving and making a difference truly knows no age limits. Thank, Aria, for playing with me, letting me take your picture, and giving me your precious "I love you."

Posted by Crystal on March 8, 2008 at 10:14PM.

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Heather - Face #26

Oh, to remember the sweet age of youthful freedom. Heather, merely 18 years old, is enjoying the freedom that has come with her long awaited entry into adulthood. Those sweet soft eyes have seen so much joy and sorrow throughout her years, making them sweeter and more tender still. Her zest for enjoying her freedom can only be surpassed with her anticipation to meet the baby who grows within her womb. In a few short months Heather will meet her sweet first born child. While pondering her portrait I realized that the glow of her own youth still glows faintly on her face. Thanks, Heather, for so patiently enduring my candlelight photography!

Posted by Crystal on March 7, 2008 at 11:30PM.

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Pam - Face #25

A hard working woman of many talents, Pam redefines today's modern woman. Having worked at Chico State in a few different positions, she now serves on the functional side of application security issues for the University. She is a mom, grandma, spare time wedding coordinator, tractor operator, coffee drinker, and an 'I can do pretty much anything' sort of woman. Pam is an incredible example in every role of her life. Thanks, Pam, for allowing me a few moments to take a few shots of you!

Posted by Crystal on March 6, 2008 at 11:15PM.

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Sandy - Face #24

Some beauty only comes as a result of refining fires. This amazing woman chooses to live in the midst of such a fire. Persistent even through limitless sorrow, Sandy pushes on regardless of the obstacles in her path. Her professional life is woven with a blend of joy and sorrow, and she serves some of the most helpless in our society. The coordinator of the Butte and Glenn County Options for Recovery program, Sandy plays a crucial role in helping children from the ages of birth through five years who have been impacted by drug or alcohol abuse.

Thank you, Sandy, for your hard work, but more importantly, thank you for your heart!

Posted by Crystal on March 5, 2008 at 10:15PM.

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Aurora - Face #23

Some young people inspire hope for the future, bringing emphasis to beautiful attributes and amazing compassion. Aurora is among the noteworthy young people who break the stereotypes of today's American teenagers. In addition to being a diligent and hardworking student, Aurora serves those around her like a champion. Many in our society have grown comfortable letting time meander aimlessly by, but Aurora is not among those people. Aurora epitomizes the notion that beauty is more than skin deep.

Thank you, Aurora, for all of your hard work, your acts of service to others, and your desire to be an exceptional youth. Thanks for allowing me to capture a bit of you!

Posted by Crystal on March 4, 2008 at 10:54PM.

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Dana - Face #22

Child care providers are very near and dear to my heart. Those who truly care about children provide an invaluable service to precious little people. Dana is one of several people working at KidsPark, a fun-filled, pay by the hour childcare facility. Dana enjoys working with children, and what child could not enjoy being with her considering her wonderful smile? Dana helps to add fun and joy to these kids' days while they are at KidsPark. Dana, thanks for being willing to care for some of Chico's precious kids. You are filling a very important role. Thanks for allowing me a few minutes to capture those cute dimples!

Posted by Crystal on March 3, 2008 at 10:30PM.

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Bill - Face #21

Bill is one of the most helpful people we have ever met, and he is one seriously handy guy. Always willing to lend a hand in any way that he can, Bill knows what it means to give of himself.

A proud father and grandfather, Bill breaks the stereotypes by riding around town on his Honda Goldwing motorcycle. He also has a great sense of humor, and he is often seen smiling.

Thanks, Bill, for being so wonderfully patient during this photo shoot!

Posted by Crystal on March 2, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Erik - Face #20

If you have lived in Chico for any reasonable period of time, then you have heard of The Arc. The Arc sells second hand clothes and accessories to help support the developmentally disabled people of Chico.

I was surprised at the diverse group of people working in the store. One man, Erik, has being working there for quite some time. He has traveled all over the world during his lifetime and now finds himself serving the community through his time at The Arc. Thanks, Erik, for spending a couple of moments with me!

Posted by Crystal on March 1, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Chloe - Face #19

This young woman plays a vital role in our town. I call her one of the many sanity savers of Chico. Most would simply call these people babysitters or nannies. Chloe recently graduated from high school, and she has found a great job caring for children. In this photo, she is seen lovingly snuggling one of the children she cares for at local library. Every parent who has ever needed a break realizes the important role that people like Chloe play in our lives.

Thank you, Chloe, for being willing to love on a few of the little ones in Chico and for giving me a brief view of your life.

Posted by Crystal on February 29, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Ashley and Bethany - Face #18

Their earthly bodies are buried in a Chico cemetery, a simple place to remember that they once were a part of this city. Though their lives were but minutes long, their impact is permanent for me. They changed me; they taught me so much about faith, love, and the preciousness of life. Through their death our lives have been opened to serve other children who need our love. Thank you, Ashley and Bethany, for teaching your mommy some very important lessons. You are not forgotten.

Posted by Crystal on February 28, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Shannon - Face #17

I am sure that most people would not be able to guess where I found this hidden treasure. On the outskirts of Chico lies a humble building filled with unwanted animals, the Butte Humane Society. Shannon spends her days serving the animals who are simply grateful that she cares enough to help them. Loving her job, Shannon helps to match loving pets with loving homes. Thanks, Shannon, for giving me a few minutes of your time and for all the work you do!

Posted by Crystal on February 27, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Amy - Face #16

Amy is a wonderfully bright entrepreneur who has established Baby's Boutique, a quaint little shop here in Chico. The business aims to reduce unnecessary waste by reusing gently used children's clothing and furniture. Amy's smile warms her shop and her customers, and she often comes up with new creative ideas to add to and improve her shop. She is truly a woman of many talents, a busy full time mom.

Amy, it was wonderful to get to chat with you for a bit. Thanks for allowing me a few moments of your time.

Posted by Crystal on February 26, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Patti - Face #15

The only thing that may surpass the love of this grandma is the beauty of her granddaughter. Patti plays many different roles, and one of the most precious is that of grandmother. Grandparents are amazingly powerful instruments of love, wisdom, and help to both their own children and their grandchildren. Patti is wonderfully loving, committed, and hard working.

Many grandparents do not hear how much they are appreciated, what a huge help they are. We would like to thank all of the grandparents who work so hard and love so deeply.

Thank you, Patti, for all that you do and for allowing me to capture a bit of your heart.

Posted by Crystal on February 25, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Every Foster Child - Face #14

Can you recognize a foster child? What haunts the eyes of their tormented youth? Have you ever wondered? These eyes are here to represent every foster child in Chico.

Some are small and some are big. Some are teens and some are babies. Some are white and some are black. Do they matter? Yes!

These children are much more than entries on some distant courtroom docket. They are amazing young people who won't give up their place in life, their desire to be loved and cherished. Invite one into your life, and it will change you forever.

To all the young people waiting in foster care, demanding that someone notice that you truly are important, please know that you are not forgotten. Thanks for being just who you are.

Posted by Crystal on February 24, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Seth - Face #13

Meet Mr. Seth, a young man of many talents and incredible verbal skills. He can be seen chatting it up with neighbors or other kids, desiring to help, or just having some fun. Seth is a great athlete, and he has a real knack for helping with the neighborhood pets. Most enjoyable to this photographer is his sweet and hilarious explanations and friendly advice. Seth, you are a remarkable young man whom we greatly enjoy; thanks for giving me a few minutes of your time.

Posted by Crystal on February 23, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Rachelle - Face #12

Smokin'! That pretty much sums up this young woman and her work. Rachelle owns a local flower shop, Flowers by Rachelle, where she specializes in creating reminders of the beauty ever present in life. Rachelle is truly a remarkable young woman. She is a business owner as well as talented, beautiful, sweet, and compassionate; that is definitely smokin'. In addition to all of her work at her shop, Rachelle volunteers her time in a variety of ways throughout the community. Rachelle most definitely has an amazing heart for serving others. Thanks, Rachelle, for giving me a bit of your valuable time; it was a pleasure! And for all you young men, there is still hope. Remarkably, she is single! :)

Posted by Crystal on February 22, 2008 at 11:25PM.

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Paul - Face #11

Lovingly devoted! A man of so many talents, amazing character, and gentle yet passionate spirit is undervalued in today's society. Yet, because of him many lives have been touched, changed, emboldened, and, most importantly, loved. Paul works in the technology department at Enloe Hospital here in Chico, and he is deeply loved by his friends, family, and others that he has impacted and served. When Paul is not busy attending to the aforementioned, he can be found giving his time in a variety of ways throughout the community. Paul, you are wonderful. Thank you for all you do, and thanks for allowing me to grab a few shots of you!

Posted by Crystal on February 21, 2008 at 11:45PM.

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Señora Smith - Face #10

Portrait of Señora Smith

Have you experienced the gift of having a teacher who challenged you to be a better person? That is how countless students feel about Señora Smith. Arguably one of the most passionate teachers we have ever had the pleasure of meeting, Señora raises the bar of excellence in teaching to a whole new level. Her courage, love, and desire to motivate and challenge her students is truly inspiring. While teachers often do not get the thanks they so richly deserve, we hope that this will serve as a small word of thanks. Thank you Señora for all that you do; your students are different for having been loved by you. Thanks for allowing me a few moments to capture a bit of you!

Posted by Crystal on February 20, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Dr. Mark Light - Face #9

Portrait of Dr. Mark Light

Dr. Light has been serving the Chico area for a number of years through his practice of general medicine and his countless attributions to different charities and organizations. A sweet, kind and deeply caring man, Dr. Light seeks to love others by using his gifts and talents. Thanks, Dr. Light, for allowing me a few moments to capture a bit of who you are!

Posted by Crystal on February 19, 2008 at 11:35PM.

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Gerrard - Face #8

Portrait of Gerrard

Meet homie Gee! Well, at least his friends call him Gee. Everyone else knows him as Gerrard. Gee is a super smart guy who aspires to be an engineer, and he might even find fame one day. Until then Gee is famous among his friends and family for his amazing sense of humor and steadfast loyalty. He has a gift that is truly treasured in our culture, the gift of being able to make people smile. But don't tell Mr. Gee that he is cute; instead, he prefers to be labeled handsome! Thanks, Gee, for allowing me a bit of your time and for making me laugh (even though I almost knocked myself out in the process). :)

Posted by Crystal on February 18, 2008 at 9:08PM.

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Officer Andy Houghtby - Face #7

Portrait of Officer Houghtby

This is Andy, who is arguably the most friendly neighborhood police officer we have ever met. Andy can often been seen biking around the Chico State Campus wearing a grin that would make even the most serious contemplate returning his smile. Andy has served both as a officer and a sheriff in the Chico area. He has a lovely wife and several handsome young boys. If you see Andy biking around, ask him for one of his collector cards! Thanks, Andy, for allowing us a few minutes with you and for all the hard work that you do.

Posted by Crystal on February 17, 2008 at 9:30AM.

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Amber - Face #6

Portrait of Amber

This young woman has one of the sweetest constitutions and the most brilliant eyes I have ever had the privilege of seeing. Her smile made meeting her even more enjoyable. I found Amber serving in Augie's, a small coffee shop tucked away downtown. How often do such treasures remain unnoticed in our busy lives?

Posted by Crystal on February 16, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Margie - Face #5

Portrait of Margie

This is the amazing Margie. Margie represents a significant portion of the Chico population: the college students. Margie is anything but common though. A bright, hardworking, determined young woman; Margie is truly outstanding. Thanks, Margie, for allowing me the privilege of capturing a moment of your youth.

Posted by Crystal on February 15, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Dr. Kirk James - Face #4

Portrait of Dr. Kirk James

I have always believed that a person's eyes tell an amazing story all by themselves. Dr. Kirk James's eyes don't disappoint! Being a dedicated chiropractor is just one of the many ways that Dr. James serves the Chico community. He is complemented by his beautiful wife and several darling children. Thanks, Dr. James, for giving me a few moments of your time!

Posted by Crystal on February 14, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Stacy - Face #3

Portrait of Stacy

Meet Ms. Stacy, a stunning, young, wonderfully petite secretary for a local foster family agency. Stacy is sweet, compassionate, and always stylishly dressed. While Stacy may fill a role that often goes unnoticed, she plays an important role for some super special foster kids in Butte County. Thanks, Stacy, for allowing me to have a couple of photo moments with you.

Posted by Crystal on February 13, 2008 at 8:00AM.

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Eric - Face #2

Portrait of Eric Manzone

Eric Manzone is a husband, father, and denture artist! Eric owns Just for Grins, a local denture fabricating shop.

He is a man of many talents. Chief among those talents would be his love and dedication to his beloved family and his extraordinary sense of humor. Thanks, Eric, for allowing me to capture a moment of your life! We had a blast.

Posted by Crystal on February 12, 2008 at 3:00PM.

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Samantha - Face #1

Portrait of Samantha

This is Samantha. Samantha is beautiful and a delight to be around. Compassionate and tender enough to work with the youngest kids, she is also funny and interesting enough to entertain any adult with delightful conversation. It has been my joy to get to know Samantha over the last 6 or so months, and we look forward to seeing her every week. Thanks, Sam, for letting me take your picture!

Posted by Crystal on February 11, 2008 at 1:30PM.

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