What are some of the lessons you learned from your parents growing up, or what do you think was most useful to your education?
A lot of what I want for Zia is gifts that I was given by my parents - two individuals who couldn’t be more different from one another, but both love so deeply and fiercely. My parents both have this insane sense of justice and love, but taught the importance of it to me in very different ways. My mom always told me to stand up for myself and speak up and out when someone hurt my feelings or if I saw someone else getting hurt to stand up and defend them. She is fierce and strong and unwavering in who she is. That was the best example for me growing up. She modeled what it was like be a strong and extremely independent woman. And she’s creative as hell. Growing up she was always doing something creative - from making beaded earrings, to learning how to My father taught me to be forgiving, and compassionate, tender and loyal. One of the greatest gifts that my father gave me was growing up in the rainforest in Southeast Alaska, it was ALWAYS ALWAYS raining. My dad has this way of seeing the beauty and joy in all things. He would bundle us up, and then set us free on the rocky beaches, or running up mountains in the mossy rainforest and as soon as our feet would hit the ground, he’d be running in front of us, with an otherworldly sparkle in his eye - all one could see was joy and beauty emanating from his spirit - actually very much like my son now. He’d get us all amped up and say things like, “isn’t this so beautiful, guys?? Look! Look at how beautiful the world is! Breathe that air in!” I would say he was the first teacher for me about finding God in all things in Nature.