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Souls of San Francisco

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I’m from España. I do a blog too. It’s fashion and I also sell bags I make there.”
“Cool, where can I see it?”
“www.sandrafreckled.com.”

"Are you two a couple?"
Her - “No.”
“Brother and sister?”
Him - “No.”
“You look so in sync though.”
Her - “We just always run into each other randomly. He told me I had good style.”
Him - “When ran into each other when I was walking my roommates dog, I didn’t tell her it was my roommates dog at first, and we started walking together, she picked up her dog and then we got to Dolores Park-“
Her - “-and then he had this confession-“
Him - “-I was like ‘hey, I have to tell you something…this is not my dog. I have a feeling we’re gonna hang out again so I want you to know this is not my dog’.”

"What do you guys like to do in the city?"
Her - “A lot of walking, a lot of margaritas, a lot of hanging out.”
Him - “Music, lots of music, concerts, writing music.”
Her - “I surf a lot, and hang out in parks.”

"How’d you two meet?"
Left - “I met her at her job. She worked at a specialty liquor store, really delicious little food items. She was working it, had the attitude, and I was like…’who’s that’? The rest is history.”
“What’s your favorite thing about her?”
Left - “Her laugh.”
Right - “My laugh?”
Left - “Yeah, your sense of humor.”
Right - “I am pretty funny.”
“What’s your favorite thing about her?”
Right - “Oh gosh…her booty.”

"My favorite thing about being a mom is the love I have for my girls. Raising kids is a lot of work, but it’s the only thing in the world that isn’t complicated. I just love them with my whole self."

"Also, having kids has made me less selfish and more flexible."

"That sounds wonderful. What do you like to do when you’re not with your little one?"
“I’ve always been interested in art, photography, and especially fashion. I began collecting vintage clothing with the hopes of one day opening a shop. Six months ago, I started taking photos of my friends in the clothes I was buying. I didn’t even know how to use my camera, but I loved taking pictures, capturing the beauty of the everyday and my own view of the world. Now, I can’t stop. I started the Sunday blog this past January, and it has been a wonderful way to organize my photos but also my thoughts. I’m so grateful to have found this creative outlet for myself. This August, I’m launching my online vintage shop. We’ll see what happens.”

"In my 4th grade science class I teach kids that science is everything. Like with plants, which are called producers because they produce their own food. Or the worms we see in the ground, which are decomposers because they break down dead material and contribute to the soil. There’s friction when you hit the brakes in a car. The seat belt in the car stops your inertia…it’s everywhere."

"Last year was my first year teaching, I used to be in telecommunications. I went back to school while I was working and got my masters in teaching. I didn’t dislike my job, but I wasn’t fulfilled. If you go to your job and you’re not passionate about it, it starts to wear on you."

"I teach 1st grade which is great because I like to act silly and the kids like to act silly."

"When I started school I was a biology major and it was way too sedentary. I needed something where I was moving around and interacting. My kids are great for that…they’re so much fun!"

"I’ve been the school nurse at Centennial for 13 years, in Atlanta in general for 30."
“What’s your favorite part of your job?”
“My passion is working with the kids with various disabilities, learning disabilities, ADD, autism. I became a nurse at Mays years ago because my oldest son has learning disabilities and ADD and I wanted to be an advocate for him. He has since got his undergrad at Fam, grad school Morehouse School of Medicine, and PHD at UGA. He teaches at Mercer now.”

"Congratulations."
“He still has dyslexia and all those things. I like to be able to talk to the parents to help them come out of denial. Let’s deal with this and look at the resources we have to help your child. Learn how to be supportive instead of thinking your child can’t be successful. I also have a little grandson who’s in the autism spectrum.”
“It’s beautiful how you’re shepherding these people.”
“I’m certainly well past retirement ago but I enjoy what I do.”

"I’ve been teaching 6th grade math for 4 years. This is gonna be my first year teaching social studies. I’m excited."
“What got you started teaching in the first place?”
“I was at church one day, the guy was preaching about ‘what are you going to do with your dash’ and I didn’t know what the dash meant at first. What he said was that on a tombstone, you have a birth date and a death date and the dash is your life. I was frustrated with the job I was in, I was at a uniform management company Cintas, and I was burnt out. We’d work hard for two weeks getting things ready for the CEO to come visit and he’d come in for 10 minutes, tell us what was wrong, get back on his private jet and fly out. So when I heard the preacher I thought ‘I don’t want my dash to be for Cintas, I want my life’s work to be service’. So I went to school to become a teacher. I chose middle grades because I wanted to catch kids before they start making bad decisions. They started doin a little heron, and the girls are growing up fast. I want to show the boys how they’re supposed to treat a woman and let the girls know how they’re supposed to be treated by a man.”
“I really respect what you’re doing. Thank you.”
“I’d do it for free. I have done it for free. My last job I worked 6 months with no check. I don’t regret it at all. I ate a lot of bologna sandwiches but I’m still in touch with those kids.”

"I’m a student at Georgia Tech and I’ve been helping create the PBIL curriculum for the school."
"What’s PBIL?"
"Problem based inquiry learning. It’s flipping the classroom so that the teachers are less teachers and more facilitators."
"What does it mean to be ‘more of a facilitator’?"
"It means there’s less telling kids the answers and more asking them questions and having them find the answers for themselves."

"This is my great granddaughter Naisha. She’s the only child we have in our family. This is my diamond right here. I walk her and anywhere from 12-20 kids to school. Sometimes I give them a snack and sit on the porch and watch em. I tell em ‘we’re not wasting this time, we’re gonna sit here and do homework’. Most of the kids made the honor roll this year."

"My father died when I was 5 and my mama taught us how to put something back in the community. Honestly I thought I wasn’t gonna make it to the corner today, I wasn’t feeling good. Real dizzy, still got a little perspiration. But I sat up and talked to the Lord. That’s where my strength is."

"What’s your favorite part about school?"
"The teachers!"

"I’m the principal of Centennial Academy where we believe in life-long learning. That’s why it’s most important to teach children how to learn rather than just what to learn. It is also why learning opportunities for our teachers and parents are just as important as for our children. We’re located in the heart of Atlanta, just north of the downtown core and across the street from world-class institutions, our community unites around common educational goals. The Mission of Centennial Academy is to prepare young people in a supportive Crib-8th grade learning environment to lead, compete and succeed in a dynamic, technologically-enabled and globally-connected world."

“We’ll do this by 1) Developing a replicable model for STEAM education, using blended and project-based learning as core strategies.

2)Helping students achieve the benchmarks of each educational bundle (Crib-K, K-2, 3-5 and 6-8) to excel in any post 8th grade educational environment and be prepared to be competitive and successful in any work environment.

3) Utilizing an effective “learning to read” approach in the Crib – K and K – 2 years to set the stage for students for the rest of life’s journey, where “reading to learn” is essential.

4) Building a state-of-the-art information technology structure that is robustly rich in content and user-friendly for each educational bundle.

5) Capitalizing on the use of strategic community partnerships to support its academic priorities.

A strong network of community partnerships and engaged parents have been key to successfully creating the first conversion charter school in Atlanta. The Georgia Institute of Technology is the premier education partner in this effort and provides support in STEM curriculum development, professional development, and student enrichment activities. Other partnerships include the Georgia Aquarium, Georgia State University, The Coca Cola Company, and the Atlanta Housing Authority. Strong crib to kindergarten partnerships in the immediate area, highlighted by a campus-based program administered by the YMCA of Metro Atlanta, provide critical early learning and skill development that ensure students entering Centennial are ready for a rigorous academic environment. The YMCA also provides necessary physical education and aftercare services integrated with the academic vision of the school. A Parent Outreach Program provides vital support to parents as partners in the education of their children.”

"I’d like to think I make small change with my honest warm approach to talking with people about their baggage. Comforting friends and family with a cup of tea, a good meal, and a HUGE hug."

"I hope that my future holds me and my dearest friends, owning a lovely bed and breakfast, raising our children side by side, and bringing some warmth to our community."

I walked to this exhibition and this guy was standing there looking awesome so I said, “Is this your art?”
"Yessir."
"It’s super cool. What’s your story?"
“I grew up around the world so I got to experience a lot of different cultures. Communist Yugoslavia, the middle east, some war zones, and after all that I realized I needed to stay somewhere for awhile, so I picked a little beach community called Folly beach in Charleston, SC. Then I spent 12 years there on this pure pursuit of creativity. I had no interest in the art world or selling, I was just creating. Then I slowly grew wiser and had an opportunity to make art in Atlanta and the timing was perfect. I had hit the ceiling where I was and couldn’t grow anymore there. Lemme show some of my stuff.”

“This one’s called “Moving the Pyramid”. The turtle’s too slow and the ibis isn’t strong enough. It’s taking a spiritual center, taking the pyramid somewhere where it’s safe. That conceptual art exploration continued throughout the work. I’m working with mythology, and with symbols that have been taken and destroyed. Now I creating a vocabulary that’s working with people to communicate the bigger picture message.”

“I like this one, it seems like a lot of people take culture and try to monetize it and you’re taking monetary symbols and making it into culture.”
“Thank you.”

“Right on. Your art is very conceptual, is there a common experience you want people to have?”
“I can’t thread it with a line, but it is metaphysical. I want to communicate at the level of cave paintings or Egyptian Heiroglyphs. We don’t have a lot to believe in anymore because every things been used and misused. The way corporations use the symbols so that the true meanings get lost. My card says ‘Future Ancestors’. It’s about those that are trying to guide the world to a more conscious state.”

"My cat died recently. I’m thinking about getting a fish, but I’m not ready for the commitment."
"I’m sorry to hear that, they say animals passing is even harder than people."
"Yeah."
"So are your from Atlanta?"
"No, I’m from Brazil."
"I was just in São Paulo for the World Cup!”
"I’m from São Paulo, that’s so cool."
"When’d you move here?"
"When I was 14. I’m 29 now. I lived in São Paulo for awhile, then Miami. Was it crazy?"
"Yeah, it was wild. A lot of fun. What do you like to do here in Atlanta? What are you passionate about?"
"I love music so much. The freedom of expression. Getting together with my friends and collaborating. Writing and seeing it transform into more than I had done in my bedroom. It’s like ‘Oh wow, you heard what I was trying to say and you took it to a way better level’."

"So when’s your next show?"
"We’re playing tonight at 7:30."
"It’s 7:32."
"Ew, maybe I should go inside."

I walked up to what looked like a food truck, but instead of food had a bunch of awesome photos printed on the walls inside. It was a mobile art gallery. These two guys were running the truck so I asked them, “What’s the story here?” 
Right - “We started a street photography hashtag project called #weloveatl on instagram. We go through, we find photos that we like, then we ask permission to print, display and sell the photos and then donate all the money to a community food bank.”


"So this is one of your ways to uplift community?"
"Yeah, the original idea was instagram show about Atlanta supporting a charitable cause. From there, we got together, came up with a hashtag, organized the first show we had in December 2012. It went really well and after the show people kept submitting photos so we wanted to figure out a way to keep it going. When did a kickstarter to get a truck and then have shows inside the truck. We’re getting non-profit status and doing more art on the belt line."
"It seems like so much cool stuff is going on in Atlanta. Where do you see the city in 5 years?"
"I think we’ll be the cultural hub of the south."