Kathleen McDade 22 October 2009
Writer, educator, mother, wife, WordPress blogger, Girl Scout
Kathleen leads a full life, working as a computer lab/technology support specialist in an elementary school, writing for various online and print publications, blogging at TechnoEarthMama, coordinating the Portland WordPress User Group, and leading a Girl Scout troop. She is also a member of the Girl Scouts’ Camp Arrowhead Resident Camp Committee, and was a member of the Camp Arrowhead Task Force, which prevented the sale of the camp in 2007-2008.
Kathleen previously worked for the Girl Scouts Columbia River Council (now part of Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington) as a camp counselor and resident camp director, and for Girl Scouts Tierra del Oro Council (now Girl Scouts Heart of Central California) as an assistant camp director and community organizer.
Kathleen grew up in Portland from age 8 to 18, but has lived in both Oregon and California. She attended Mills College in Oakland, California, graduating with a degree in Anthropology. While in California, she was a member of Indecent Exposure, the performing cast for the Rocky Horror Picture Show at the U.C. Theater in Berkeley. Later, she was also a member of the Clinton Street Cabaret in Portland.
Kathleen currently lives with her three daughters, husband and cat in the Parkrose Heights neighborhood in Portland, Oregon. She owns and edits ParkroseGateway.com, a hyperlocal blog/news site for this neighborhood.
What are you up to?
As you might expect after reading my bio, I’m always searching for balance in my life! Mainly, I’m trying to balance my full-time paycheck job and family time with writing. I enjoyed spending more time this past summer working on my hyperlocal blog, ParkroseGateway.com. Since I wasn’t working my regular job, I had time to go to meetings, make phone calls, and even cover a little breaking news. I definitely plan to continue working on this, but need to find a good workflow for it.
I’m also looking for more freelance writing opportunities with magazines, although traditional magazines are having a difficult time right now! I’ve worked with Portland Family, Calgary’s Child and the Upper Room in the past year.
What are you into?
Bicycling, but not in a spandex kind of way. I bike to work every day on an Xtracycle, and use it for many errands too, including taking kids to day care and grocery shopping. I’m passionate about sharing my cycling experience with others, because I think it’s important environmentally that we move from a car-centered society to a more human-powered society. I’m also interested in other pieces of sustainable living, like food (growing, cooking, preserving), non-consumer economies, affordable health care for all, and walkable/livable communities. I write about these things mainly on my personal blog, TechnoEarthMama.
I’m also a passionate follower of Christ, who doesn’t attend a traditional church any more, and who’s working out what it means to be the church in the world instead. I blog about this at What’s the Mission.
Oh, and I love to READ! I read a wide variety of books, as well as magazines and blogs. I especially enjoy young adult novels and science fiction. I occasionally contribute to my sister’s book blog, Six Boxes of Books.
What do you like most about Portland?
I don’t feel like a weirdo here! Most of the time, anyway. I can actually find people who are like me, and not just on the internet. I love that people will facilitate gatherings around almost anything. People aren’t content to just communicate on the internet; they also want to form in-person communities.
I’ve also always loved the proximity to nature here. We’ve got Mt. Hood, the Gorge, and the coast nearby, but even within the city, it’s easy to find a quiet place with evergreen trees and walking trails.
Finally, I really appreciate the bike infrastructure, and I appreciate city leaders for being ahead of the game in developing more bicycle infrastructure.
So why aren’t you selling more of your writing?
I need to query more (write letters to editors proposing articles I want to write). Selling myself as a writer is the hardest part, and the easiest to put off.
What’s your favorite kind of Whiffies pie?
Chicken pot pie!