What was your high school mascot?
Tifiany (Mom): We were the “Devils” in Grosse Ile, MI, which is an island south of Detroit. I was super involved – cheerleading, volleyball, senior class president, glee club – every year I tried something different. I actually went back for my 30th class reunion this summer.
Amaranta (daughter): I’m currently completing my diploma online and on track to graduate in 2019.
(With straight A’s added Mom!)
What brought you to Bradenton?
T: Our family brought us here. My Mom, Dad, and sister were here. With Amaranta being an only child, I wanted her to have family around here and grow up with her cousins (also my Godchild). I was working at the time in a bummer job closing Blockbuster video rental stores, so I was ready for a change. We moved here in 2009, so almost 10 years
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
T: What didn’t I want to be when I grew up?! I was probably most serious about being a veterinarian, but when I realized I would have to give animals their shots, I decided that was not the thing for me.
A: When I was little, I wanted to be an astronaut. I was obsessed with Jupiter, actually, and I wanted to be the first person to travel to Jupiter.
What DID you do when you grew up?
T: I was a sous chef on the line at restaurants in Detroit and later in Chicago. I especially enjoyed Mediterranean and Latin-infused cooking styles. I am currently working as a florist at the Publix on Cortez and 43rd Street West, I love it!
A: I’m really interested in music therapy so we’ll see where this takes me. Maybe not to Jupiter (ha ha!), but that’s okay. I hope to help people overcome their trauma and suffering here on earth and leave the space travel as a childhood dream (for now at least).
How did you get started volunteering with Realize Bradenton?
T: I love learning about places we visit so I do a lot of research. As we made our new home in Bradenton in 2009-2010, I was researching free events and fun things for families to do when came across Realize Bradenton. We came to the Farmers’ Market and were hooked.
Where else do you volunteer?
T: We volunteer at our church, the Downtown Kitty Town, and United Way events through Publix.
A: It’s not a volunteer role, but I’m enjoying helping with kids programs at Art Center Manatee.
What do you love to do so much that you lose track of time while you’re doing it?
T: Reading, definitely. I also enjoying music – listening, playing, singing … We have a piano at home we play. We sing at our church and have joined the bell choir.
A: I’ve been learning meditation, so I’ll sit and kind of zone out. It helps my mind relax so I don’t overthink things.
Name a few of your favorite places in downtown Bradenton.
A: Mmmm Turner’s Donuts! Fresh makes such a difference. I also love Riverwalk. What’s great about downtown Bradenton is that I feel comfortable anywhere.
Batman or Superman?
T: Neither, actually. I like Spiderman because he’s kind of a nerd like me and transforms himself to be a combination of so many things – a scientist, a hero, a friend … I like his story.