Meet a Mom: Kristin Burkemper | Milwaukee North Shore Moms

Thank you for taking the time out of your schedule for Milwaukee North Shore Moms. We’re excited to share your story with the MNSM community!

Where did you grow up, and what brought you to the North Shore?

Krisin: I am originally from Massachusetts – moved around a bit as a kid (MA, Arkansas, IL, WI) which was challenging as a kid but really made me the person I am today. I went to Marquette; I swore I would never stay in WI – wanted to move to Colorado (which is still a goal of mine! ). I met my now-husband there my senior year and ended up staying in Wisconsin.

My first teaching job was at Whitefish Bay High school in the English department and knew I wanted my kids to go there (it’s such a great education which is really important to us). This is is what brought us to Bay.

How many kids do you have, and what are their ages?

Kristin: We have three daughters: Elliot (13), Leyla (11), Natalie (8), and two dogs: Stella and Marley.

If your daughters could decide an entire day’s activities to do with you, what would they choose?

Kristin: Shopping! Which didn’t used to be the case and lunch. Then, a movie at home, snuggling on the couch (we love watching cheesy hallmark movies together!).

Our daughters love in-person shopping too. The love our generation has for the amazing convenience and selection of online shopping seems to be lost on our children.

You’ve had a dynamic career path that your health has influenced. Can you tell us about that journey and describe your current sense of place and purpose?

Kristin: My health has definitely made my path a winding one. I suffer from chronic pain; I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and have been seen by way too many doctors. Pain is made worse by stress and cold weather – very ironic that I live in WI! I Stopped teaching due to the pain and started to pursue creative outlets which led me to another work that I love and am passionate about, design. I still struggle with my health/chronic pain, but I have found healthier ways to deal with it: yoga, physical therapy, what I eat, etc. Some days are great – others I am laid up in bed and unable to do anything

We love your commitment to giving back, supporting women, and empowering girls to follow their interests and embrace their many layers! What impact has Bird’s Tail had on our local community that makes you the proudest?

Kristin: My goal with my business is to make others’ lives just a little brighter – whether that’s with a piece of jewelry or if it’s helping someone design a home or just a room that they can enjoy and feel their best in. My mother is a breast cancer survivor which is what fueled my passion for working with ABCD – I have a great relationship with ABCD and love their mission. We donate jewelry to them for every online sale. I often include handwritten notes with a piece of jewelry to the women who call in and are recently diagnosed.

Is there one piece of jewelry or collection that has special meaning to you?

Kristin: Anytime I get to create and make something new – that’s where the magic is. Taking metals and stones and making something wearable that others can enjoy -that’s where the beauty is! I also love creating custom pieces for people – It’s an opportunity to get really close to someone and create something beautiful just for them

What book would we find on your nightstand today?

Kristin: Admittedly I have way too many books on my nightstand right now! Right now: Anxious People, The Great Believers, Of Women and Salt and a handful of interior design magazines.

If you could go on a month-long vacation anywhere in the world, where would it be and with whom?

Kristin: My husband and I recently went to Banff, Canada, and fell in love with the town! The beauty of the mountains, streams, the architecture, the people – great shopping and food! I definitely want to go back with my whole family so they can experience the beauty too. I also want to travel throughout Europe to experience different cultures, food, people, art, fashion, architecture

Where do you see yourself ten years from now?

Kristin: Creating beautiful pieces- focusing more on custom design. And definitely focusing more on my interior design career – I am finding great joy in this work right now – it really fuels me! Traveling! I want to see the world and be influenced by it.  I think it is important as humans to experience different cultures and parts of the world in order to become more empathetic, well-rounded humans. Traveling exposes us to other’s perspectives which can help us understand ourselves and our place in this world.

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