Category Archives: Member Feature

Member Feature: Sarah Beitler

sarahb

Why did you want to join the USC Newcomers’ Club?
I have actually lived in Pittsburgh since I moved here for college in 1999, and in USC since my husband and I bought a condo in 2003. But when we moved to our current USC house in 2009 a lot in my life had changed: I had twin 1 year olds and had stopped working to become a stay at home mom. Although the two events above proved to be a blessing… I felt alone and isolated and wanted to make new friends. I also liked the idea of the USC Newcomers club vs another mom’s club in the area because I wanted to make friends with the parents of kids who my boys would be going to school with in the future.

Where did you recently move from?
We moved in 2009 to our current house. We loved it because it was walking distance to the USC Community and Recreation Center and it had a big backyard. The house itself had a lot of potential but hadn’t been updated since it was built in the 50’s (original mad-men style stove and everything!) so we had a lot of freedom to update the house to our style. Before that we lived in a condo in USC across from the USC Post Office.

Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Weston, MA which is about 20 minutes outside of Boston. Weston had great public schools and I knew I wanted to find a community for my children that also had great public school. Upper St Clair fit the bill!

Where did you go to college and what did you study?
I went to Carnegie Mellon University and double majored in Fine Arts and Human-Computer Interaction. I loved CMU and really enjoyed taking classes in many different departments. I also met my husband Rich there (he also went to CMU and majored in Electrical and Computer Engineering)!

What do you do for your day job?
I am a Stay at Home Mom. I also am very involved in this Newcomers’ group on the board, as well as a South Hills Delta Gamma Alumni Group. I am also involved with my boy’s preschool (Westminster Nursery School) on their Fundraising Committee.

Do you have any kids? If so what are their names and ages?
I have two boys: Joshua (Josh) and Matthew (Matt). They are identical twins and are 5 years old. They are growing so fast. I can’t believe they will start Kindergarten next year!

Do you have any pets?
I have two pug dogs – Winston and Stella. They are litter mates and 10 years old. They were my first set of twins! 😉

What do you like to do for fun?
I love to read, go for walks, run, playdates with my kids, cook, and hang out with my mom. When my husband and I have a sitter, we like to go out to the movies and see whatever the latest movie is. We just saw the movie Gravity and really enjoyed it!

What books on your shelf are begging to be read?
I read all sorts of books on my Kindle, or iPhone. I tend to read everything electronically because my reading is in spurts around my kids schedules. I am currently reading the Ender’s Shadow Series as I just finished the Ender’s Game Series and loved it. And yes, I will be seeing the Ender’s Game movie that is coming out soon!

What’s the biggest goal you are working on now?
We are renovating our basement and moving my husbands office downstairs to make room for separating my boys into separate bedrooms. I guess my biggest goal currently is organizing my house and keeping my kids happy and healthy. My personal goal is to run a full marathon. I am not a natural runner, but I try and have run 3 half marathons. I am planning to run my first full when my boys start 1st grade in 2 years.

What other things do you want your fellow newcomers to know about yourself?
I feel lucky to have joined this group 4 year ago. What a fantastic group of women!

Member Feature: Becky Brindle

beckyBrindle

Why did you want to join the USC Newcomers’ Club?

I wanted to make new friends and learn more about the area.

Where did you recently move from?

I’ve been in Upper St. Clair for almost three years after living in Bethel Park, the South Side and Oakland (all in Pittsburgh).

Where did you grow up?

I lived in Appleton, Wisconsin until I was 12, then I went to middle and high school in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Where did you go to college and what did you study?

I came to Pitt to play tennis and I majored in communication and psychology.

What do you do for your day job?

After seven years in journalism, I recently began a job with DICK’S Sporting Goods as a web copywriter.

Do you have any kids? If so what are their names and ages?

Yes, Mason is 16 months old.

Do you have any pets?

No pets, but Mason and I are hoping to get a dog one day!

What do you like to do for fun?

I like to try new restaurants, cook/bake, shop, and watch/read the news. However, my favorite thing to do is hang out with my family. I’ve also been doing a lot of running, although I wouldn’t exactly call it “fun.”

What books on your shelf are begging to be read?

Every. Single. One. I haven’t even had the chance to take the plastic wrap off my most recent InStyle magazine.

What’s the biggest goal you are working on now?

Learning my new job!

What other things do you want your fellow newcomers to know about yourself?

You get out of the Upper St. Clair Newcomers’ Club what you put into it. I stepped out of my comfort zone and participated solo in a number of events, and I’m so happy that I did. I’ve made some lifelong friends thanks to this organization.

Member Feature: Jean Montgomery Lesogor

Jean Montgomery Lesogor

Why did you want to join the USC Newcomers’ Club?

I wanted to join Newcomers so that me and my family could meet some people in the local community. Shortly after joining, I joined a playgroup and was lucky enough to meet some wonderful mothers.

Where did you recently move from?

My family and I moved from Boston in September of 2007. We rented for a year in Dormont while we found the perfect community and home to start our family in. We bought and moved into our home in USC in August of 2008 when our oldest daughter, Jocelyn (now 5) was 3 months old.

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Weirton WV and my husband, Jim, in Braintree MA.

Where did you go to college and what did you study?

I graduated from Bethany College in 1995 with a BA in Accounting, Northeastern University with an MBA in 2005 and Allegheny County Community College with a Associates Degree in Nursing in 2011. My studies and career path are a long story. When Jim was transferred to Pittsburgh in 2007, I had to walk away from a long banking career and I may not have done this if the opportunity did not present itself. I wanted to be a nurse for as long as I can remember and opted not to study it when I was younger because of the lack of available jobs in the Ohio Valley in the 1990’s. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to pursue another career that I find to be extraordinarily rewarding.

What do you do for your day job?

Stay at home mother / Part time RN at St. Clair Hospital

Do you have any kids? If so what are their names and ages?

Jocelyn – 5

Jessica – 21 months

Do you have any pets?

Dog – Mitzy
Fish – Dorothy (named after Elmo’s goldfish)

Frog – just called “the frog”

What do you like to do for fun?

Hang out with my kids and husband, play board games, scrapbooking, travel and read.

What books on your shelf are begging to be read?

7th Heaven – James Patterson

and an endless stack of “how to” parenting books – my favorite though is Raising Your Spirited Child

What’s the biggest goal you are working on now?

Organizing my house. Jocelyn was 3 months old when we moved in and we’ve never really taken the time to properly organize everything. We have since added another child and SO MUCH stuff – we are swimming in it!

What other things do you want your fellow newcomers to know about yourself?

I have really enjoyed my time as a member of this wonderful organization. It has made building a life in USC so much easier and fulfilling. This is a great group and provides an instant support system for new families in our community.

Member Feature: Elizabeth Schwall

elizabethS

Why did you want to join the USC Newcomers’ Club?

We moved here 4 years ago and we didn’t know a soul! I knew that I needed to make friends fast because without any family in the area, we would need support from others to thrive here in St Clair, especially being a young family (at the time we had just bought our first house and were expecting our first child). The playgroups were perfect for me because they gave me a weekly date to see and get to know the same moms. Four years later, many of the moms in that first playgroup are my closest friends!

Where did you recently move from?

We were in State College for 6 years before moving here.

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in two places. Until I was 16 we lived on Long Island in NY, and then we moved to Cooperstown, NY. Although that was a tough time to move, I feel lucky that I got to live in both in an urban and rural area as a kid.

Where did you go to college and what did you study?

I went to Cornell and studied child development. I got my doctorate from Penn State in clinical psychology.

What do you do for your day job?

Right now I am home caring for my kids full time. However, I am a clinical psychologist and I specialize in working with children and families.

Do you have any kids? If so what are their names and ages?

My son (Leo) will be 4 in February and my daughter (Emilia) is turning 1 in a few weeks.

Do you have any pets?

No pets, which I am grateful for because I have enough to clean up! 😉

What do you like to do for fun?

My husband and I love to eat and try new foods/restaurants. We are so happy there is good Ethiopian food here! I also love to get drinks with friends, read a good book, or go to the museums.

What books on your shelf are begging to be read?

Right now, I’m reading Where did you go Bernadette, Mommy Mantras, and Playful Parenting. Of course this is when I can manage to stay awake long enough at night to read!

What’s the biggest goal you are working on now?

I’m getting ready to open a private practice and I’m dabbling in the world of blogging. For anyone who might be interested, the address is frompracticetoparenting.wordpress.com

What other things do you want your fellow newcomers to know about yourself?

I’m really glad to live in a place where I can get to the city and take advantage of the universities and museums and theater in no time, but also go hiking or visit the local farms just as easily. It’s such a nice balance!