While we adjust to life as a family of 5, a few local bloggers kindly agreed to keep MiniBury readers entertained with tales and adventures from their own lives. Today Faith Gong introduces us to a new series called “Meet the Parent.” Faith writes the bi-weekly “Faith in Vermont” column for The Addison Independent, and The Pickle Patch blog. She lives in Middlebury with her husband, their four daughters, and an over-anxious labradoodle.
MEET THE PARENT: Jamie Gaucher
Welcome to the third installment of “Meet the Parent!” There are a couple of reasons why I’m excited about today’s profile:
- Jamie Gaucher is a father. Fathers are parents, too, and he’s the first to be featured in “Meet the Parent.” His wife nominated him to be interviewed. I love everything about this!
- Jamie and his family are a perfect example of why I wanted to do “Meet the Parent.” I met him and his wife, Elizabeth, when our daughters were in a week-long gymnastics camp together last summer. The Gauchers had recently moved to Vermont, and I wanted to be warm and welcoming. I was also trying to feed a six-week-old baby, contain a two-year-old, and convince my four- and five-year-olds that I was “watching” them do gymnastics. I promptly forgot all the Gauchers’ names, although I continued to see Elizabeth around town and greet her with a vague, “Hi, how are you?” Now, I will never forget their names again!
WHO ARE THE MEMBERS OF YOUR FAMILY?
My wife Elizabeth is studying for her MFA in Creative Nonfiction and my daughter Clarin is a Kindergartner at the Mary Hogan School.
WHERE DO YOU LIVE?
HOW LONG HAVE YOU LIVED IN VERMONT?
Exactly one year!
HOW DID YOU END UP IN VERMONT?
I wanted to expand my career in economic development as well as to raise my child in a healthy, education-oriented community. I had looked in various other places, but when the Middlebury opportunity came up it was the clear win. I am the Director of Business and Development and Innovation for our town.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE LOCAL ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH CHILDREN?
My daughter loves the ECHO Lake Aquarium in Burlington, Fire and Ice Restaurant where she can serve her own local milk, and movies at the Marquis. Her all-time favorite thing has to be Ilsley Library, though. Anything there, she loves.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE “FAR-FLUNG” ADVENTURES TO DO WITH CHILDREN?
The coast of Maine with its rocky beaches, and the big city experience of Boston.
WHERE WOULD WE BE MOST LIKELY TO FIND YOU AT 10 AM ON A SATURDAY?
Dance class via the Middlebury College Performing Arts Center, or reading the Addison Independent and contemplating another pot of coffee.
WHAT DO YOU CONSIDER THE MOST CHALLENGING ABOUT RAISING CHILDREN IN VERMONT?
Explaining why it took 5 years to bring her to this great place!
HOW DO YOU SURVIVE SNOW DAYS?
Getting outside for sledding, snowballs and bright pink cheeks; inside for puzzles, and making homemade pizza dough.
WHAT BOOKS DOES YOUR FAMILY ENJOY READING TOGETHER THESE DAYS?
Laura Ingalls Wilder and anything about science or nature.
WHAT DO YOU CONSIDER A PARENTING “MUST-HAVE?”
A library card — make it one for each person in your family. My daughter loves checking out her own books.
IF YOU COULD GO BACK IN TIME, WHAT WOULD YOU TELL YOURSELF AS A FIRST-TIME PARENT?
“Don’t underestimate how hard it will be, and don’t underestimate how amazing, fantastic and magical it will be.”
WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO AFTER YOUR DAUGHTER IS IN BED?
Watch all the Academy Award nominated movies I haven’t seen yet.
YOUR DAUGHTER IS WITH A SITTER! WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE “ADULT FUN” ACTIVITIES?
Holding hands around town with my wife; intimate dinners.
Thanks to Jamie, and to Elizabeth for nominating him! If you think your co-parent would make a good “Meet the Parent” profile, feel free to nominate them, too! Simply contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.