👋 Hey, I'm Beal!

Welcome to Extracurriculars, where I write on life, work, and everything in between. I'm based in Upstate New York, where I live in an imperfect home with an imperfect garden, a cat named Lunch Box, and bookshelves full of things to read.

Describing what I'm "about" feels a little hollow, as if providing you with a list of my hobbies or work experiences will explain to you who I really am, but here are a few things to know, in loosely chronological order:

  • In second grade, I declared I wanted to be a writer, and haven't stopped trying to carve out time for this practice since.
  • I grew up in a cottage-sized house with an unreliable water supply at the bottom of a hill and between two glens. Today, the land that lines the road where we lived is nearly all conserved, and my sense of place is deeply informed by this home and its history.
The house where I grew up.
  • I studied creative nonfiction, political science, and French at Skidmore College, where I basically spent my free time either hiking in the woods or phone banking for local elections.
  • My professional background is in marketing, communications, and fundraising for social causes, working directly for local nonprofits, on statewide campaigns, and on the agency side, too. I'm especially interested in supporting people and movements that are ready to re-work the status quo, and re-imagine frameworks that nurture creativity, imagination, and community.
  • My garden is equal parts unruly and unsuccessful. Getting out there on a regular basis reminds me of all the beautiful, wild things I can't control in this world, and connecting with the earth in this way makes me a fuller human.
  • In the summer of 2023, I quit my job to take an intentional career break, recognizing that I've been, 'til now, fully bolstered by institutions and employment. FOR MY WHOLE LIFE. I'm taking time to complete a yoga teacher training, start flight lessons, and investigate systemic solutions to individual burnout. It's not a comfortable time (financially, intellectually, or emotionally), but it is a necessary time. We're in it, baybee!

Everything else you need to know about me can be found on the blog. See you over there!

Beal in her garden, smiling in the late afternoon sun.
Me, in the backyard garden of my home in Upstate NY.