I am a 16-year-old unschooler, and I incorporate learning in every day. I am looking for more ways to help in wildlife conservation and education, and trying to capture some of the beauty of nature with my art.
My family left Nashville, Tennessee in 2016 and decided to travel full-time in our RV. In just 2 years we’d spent at least one night in all 48 states (all except Alaska and Hawaii).
We explored many of the country’s state and national parks and learned so much along the way.
I have always loved animals, and my interest in snakes started in 2019 – I realized that I could only identify one or two species and I wanted to learn more about them.
In 2020, our travels slowed down, and we became interested in volunteering at the Florida State Parks.
We have volunteered at Bahia Honda and Curry Hammock State Park in the Keys, getting the opportunity to work with monitoring sea turtle nests (with a permit) and working with invasive species.
Being surrounded by beach and in the path of many migratory birds, we were often called on for bird rescues. Through that my Mom and I started volunteering at the Marathon Wild Bird Rescue and gained experience with a range of bird and wild animal species. I got the wonderful experience of tube-feeding a pelican and a cormorant and learning some basic veterinary techniques.
We have also volunteered at Oscar Scherer State Park sharing about the Bald Eagle nesting, the native flora and fauna, and running the nature center. After becoming a certified Master Herpetologist (the study of Reptiles and Amphibians) through the Amphibian Foundation in 2023, I did a presentation on the subject at Oscar Scherer State Park.
As of the end of 2023, I have 886 volunteer hours and was selected as Youth Volunteer of the Year in Southern Florida.
In 2020 – before we started working with the Florida State Parks, we bought a house in Venice Florida, and during the times we stay there we are involved with the Parrot Outreach Society and foster kittens with St. Francis Animal Rescue of Venice.
I love learning about animals and how to protect them in the wild, as well as giving them the best life in captivity. I currently have 4 snakes:
- Niles Louhiss Abner – the Corn Snake (Pantherophis guttatus)
- Betty Maize – the Corn Snake (Pantherophis guttatus)
- Mordecai – the Pueblan Milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum campbelli)
- Otis Mojave – the Western Hognose Snake (Heterodon nasicus)
And two rescue Cats: Jasper Magic (gray), and Jinx Mayhem (calico), and a rescue Dog (Harley McQuin).
Along with my love of animals, I paint with watercolor, draw with pen and colored pencils, and crochet. I have been selling my art since I was 6 and have illustrated two children’s books (What if it Were Possible by my grandmother, Joanne Miller and me – age 8), and The Not-So-Graceful-Goose (Yet to be published by Valerie James).
I’ve built up an inventory at this point and also take custom orders – you can see what’s available here, and I welcome your ideas on what animals to highlight next!