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Getting to Know You: LaDonna Kay

State – North Carolina

Position(s) with WBTB – Board Member, National Volunteer Coordinator 

Family – I have been married for 10 years, my husband is a Master Deputy with Wake County Sheriffs Office.  We have a beautiful 5 year old little girl named Mackenzie Layne. 

Interests or hobbies – I am a HUGE Pittsburgh Steelers fan….. and I do mean HUGE.  We are highly superstitious, we have to wear the same clothes, sit in the same seats, high five in a certain order… all of it!  We have a Steelers room and we have and WILL keep newbies out because they are bad luck.

We've kicked out neighbors, friends, and relatives…. No one is safe if the Steelers are losing! I came into the superstition side of it when I was 16 years old.  I walked into the Steeler room to tell my parents “bye” before going shopping with friends.  At precisely that second the other team threw an interception that we caught and ran in for a touchdown.  My dad deemed me good luck and forced me to call my friends and cancel the shopping trip because I wasn't allowed to leave the room after that! LOL! I've been die-hard ever since.

Talents – I can sing without making you want to cover your ears! LOL  I have been told I’m a good writer.  I've had things published in newspapers and magazines, and am currently writing a novel.

Occupation – I do heating and air-conditioning for a living.  I have a mechanical engineering degree, and I work as a Service Agreement Manager, while also assisting the president. I've designed duct systems, and manual load calculations.

My dream vacation would be…..  I LOVE taking cruises.  My husband and I are taking a cruise in April, it will be my 10th anniversary on my 10th cruise.  I would love to take a European cruise one day!  I also really really want to go overseas to Venice and Greece.

My super power is….. organization?!?!!? LOL  I really am a very organized soul…. I save everything and love being able to find things at the drop of a hat…. So if you look at my computer everything has a folder and a sub folder.  It’s crazy!

Something you can do better than your spouse/ significant other….  There are too many to count! LOL  I’m just kidding…. Um my husband and I are total opposites…. I’m creative and figurative, and he is very literal and straight forward….  So most things that I do, he would never try…. And it’s the same for the things he does!  I figure if you put us together we have all the bases covered.

My greatest achievement has been ….  I would have to say being a BUSY mom.  I work very hard to make sure that my little girl is never affected by the decisions I make in life or the things I sign up to do….She always comes first and I always ALWAYS have time for her.  We are inseparable. For example:  I already have a 4 year degree from Meredith College… but I decided to go back to school for another degree/ different major.  I was working full-time, and my little girl was 3-years-old.  I stayed up late and did homework after she went to bed every night, studied during nap times and still managed to never miss an important event at preschool and hosted play-dates every weekend, and planned birthday parties.  So in just 2-years I went to school full-time, worked full-time, and was a mom and a wife and graduated WITH honors at the head of my class with my Mechanical Engineering degree.  I am a firm believer that if you work hard, anything and everything is possible.

Something that no one knows about me is…..  My husband and I have been through so much together, much more than the average couple.  My husband was in the army and left for boot camp 3 weeks after we met each other.  We fell in love quickly before he left and got to know each other through letters.  He came home from boot camp and we were together for just a few months before he was “activated” and had to move on base for a year so we had limited visitation.  After 12 months he came home and proposed to me.  We planned on having a big wedding until 9/11 happened.  Just 5 months later, he received deployment papers on Monday, we rushed to the chapel and got married that Friday (coincidentally it was Valentine’s Day), and he shipped out that Sunday.  We only had 48 hours together as a married couple before he left for Iraq for 11 months.  Our entire first 4 years together we only spent 19 months in the same city and it was broken up over the years. I really wanted to have our big wedding at my college chapel…. I called to schedule our “wedding” for our 1-year anniversary but the college said the chapel had a 2 year waiting list.  I was devastated.  The chaplain called me back and said, we have one day open in the next 24 months, but I doubt you want it, because no one does…. I asked him what day it was, and he said “Valentine’s Day”!!!! I jumped on it!!!! And Kenny and I had the wedding of our dreams on the exact 1-year anniversary! J Years later we decided we wanted kids…. So we tried conceiving.  After about 2 ½ years we were tested, and it was determined that we would not be able to have kids together.  So we looked into adoption.  I met with a friend that was a social worker, had paperwork from so many adoption agencies, and had made our profile as adoptive parents.  I was so stressed out at the time.  We went on vacation, on a cruise, and felt seasick the whole time.  It was my 7th cruise, and I have never been seasick before….  I came home, and just took a pregnancy test, just to rule that out, and got the shock of lifetime when I found out I was pregnant!  We were overjoyed.  We still plan to adopt one day, because I feel like God has that in the stars for me! You can also take into consideration my difficult pregnancy.  I was in a car accident while 6 months pregnant, was diagnosed with pre-eclampsia, which developed into eclampsia by the time I delivered… and was leaking amniotic fluid.  They finally delivered Mackenzie 2 months early, after I spent a month on bed rest and 2 weeks in the hospital.  I had multiple steroid injections and was coping with the fact that my baby could spend weeks or even months in the NICU.  God had it all in His hands though…. Because she was delivered and only stayed in the NICU for 6 short HOURS!!!! She was perfect, very petite at only 32 weeks, but absolutely PERFECT! So long story short, Kenny and I have been through so much together….. if we ever fight…. We never take it too far, because for us, we just sit back and realize that we have been through far too much together to let something trivial affect our marriage.  We are as strong as strong can be.

My favorite food is …..  I LOVE food.  I have true appreciation for chef’s and the art they create.  I am one of those people that if you go to a nice restaurant you NEVER EVER special order your food, because the chef prepared it that way for a reason….  I never put salt on food before I try it, and I will try anything and everything once.  I have eaten escargot (a personal favorite), frog legs, snake, shark, and I love sushi.  But you also can’t go wrong with my mom’s chicken and rice, or good old chicken Parmesan.

Three things I would want if I were stranded on a desert island are ….  Well first I would wish for the obvious things, a boat, my family, and unlimited food and drink! LOL   But if that wasn't available, I would want my leave in conditioner (infusium) and my chap stick (Burt's bees) – I’m ADDICTED, and a football that I would name Mike Tomlin so he could be my version of Tom Hank’s “Wilson” and he would be my lifelong friend, and I could tell him all the plays I wish he would make in the game!!!!!  P.S.  If you don’t know who Mike Tomlin is, he is the Head Coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers.  DUH!

My secret crush is…… Okay I don’t crush on celebrities but I do crush on “characters”…… so I am in love with Orlando Bloom but ONLY as the Elf Legolas in Lord of the Rings…. I also have a big thing for James McAvoy as Wesley from the movie Wanted and the legendary Indiana Jones!

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