2 posts tagged news
9 year old food blogger Martha Payne has been all over the worldwide news lately due to her food blog NeverSeconds which has gone viral, with over 1.6 million pageviews so far. Martha started her blog because she was coming home from school hungry due to lousy-tasting, unhealthy school lunches. She decided to take photos of her lunch every day and post them on a blog, along with ratings of the food. It wasn’t long before she received international attention…even school lunch activist Jamie Oliver got involved. And, more importantly, her school has improved the quality of their lunches because of Martha’s efforts!
As soon as I read about Martha, naturally I wanted to interview her. I checked her blog for contact info, then after finding none went directly to Twitter. Bingo…I found her dad, Dave, who is, of course, a #prouddad, as he stated in one of his tweets! (Thank you, Dave, for tweeting me back with your email address!) Martha was kind enough to get back to me within 24 hours with her fantastic answers to my questions… :)
Peggy: Where do you live, how old are you, and what grade are you in?
Martha: I live in Lochgilphead in Argyll in Scotland. I am 9 years old and in a class called P5.
Martha: I wrote a newspaper article in school about the sinking of the Titanic and really enjoyed it so I asked Dad if I could write everyday. I came up with the idea of a blog about lunches because I was coming home hungry.
Martha: I have seen some of Jamie’s TV programmes with my family and we have some of his recipe books. Many people sent him a message about my blog. He said on TV that I should take over from him! I don’t feel famous. My friends are the same as before. It’s nice to be asked questions but I think I’d rather ask than answer.
Martha: My mum has a really important job. She is a family doctor and also runs a hospital. When she is on call she has to rush in sometimes. She is always fair and kind to everyone. One rule we have is limited electronic time so I am not allowed to watch a lot of TV or play on computers though answering this email doesn’t count! We have to mute TV ads and dad always says he’d rather give us an experience than a toy.
Martha: I’d like to be a journalist and ask questions. I have a friend in Spain who is a journalist and she is really cool.
Martha: I like to have my friends over to play. We make dens outside and I show them our lambs. Sometimes they help round the sheep up.
Martha: I love chocolate and my favourite is called Dairy Milk.
Martha: Thank you for reading my blog.
I met Pam Cook years ago when our daughters were in preschool together. I’ve always been impressed by Pam because, although she gets up in the middle of the night to do the morning news, she always has a smile on her face! We used to run into each other while dropping our kids off at school, after Pam had already been over to Oakland and back, and had spent several hours on TV! By the time she appeared at school, Pam looked like a “normal” mom, studio makeup removed, toddler on hip. Talk about SuperMom!
Bio: Pam Cook anchors the “KTVU Channel 2 Morning News”, the Bay Area’s #1 rated morning news show, and is in charge of the business stories. She learned about Wall Street, finance, and investing, while working on the trading floor of Montgomery Securities, formerly a top West Coast brokerage firm. But, she couldn’t stay away from her love of journalism and telling a good story, so she made the job change.
Proud to be a third generation Californian, Pam was born and raised in San Diego where most of her family still lives. She graduated from UCLA with a major in economics and credits that degree and business experience with getting her job at Channel 2.
When not in the newsroom, she’s hard at work at her favorite job; “Mommy.” Most of her free time is spent in the classroom, at the park or jumping rope in the front yard. Pam and her husband enjoy exploring the Bay Area with their three children.
Peggy: You have quite a job, anchoring the (very early) morning news! What time do you have to get up?
Pam: Ahhh, one of the most frequently asked questions. Alarm goes off at 2:15, and I leave the house by 3am. The second FAQ: What time do you go to bed? Not usually before 9pm. Yes, I know that’s 5 1/2 hours of sleep and, yes, I try to nap!
Peggy: Have you always been interested in journalism? What were you going to be when you grew up?
Pam: In elementary school, I wanted to be a ballerina and a Marine Biologist, (probably because of all my time spent at Sea World, growing up in San Diego). By High School, I wanted to interview people and tell stories. When I graduated from college, I did not want to move to Topeka, Kansas or Lincoln, Nebraska, which is where you get your start in journalism. Sorry, I’m a spoiled California girl!
Peggy: You have three children, and I know that you’re a very dedicated mom. How do you balance work and motherhood…especially with your crazy work schedule?
Pam: I thought I was going to be a CNN reporter traveling the world and I wasn’t sure I was going to have kids. From the moment I held my first daughter, I knew I was meant to be a mom! That’s why the crazy hours; I can be a working mom and still be in the classroom, go on all of the field trips and pick them up every day when school ends :-)
Peggy: You are also a Wall Street expert, and report on business news for KTVU. How do you manage to find time keep up on everything?
Pam: I graduated from UCLA with a degree in economics, and out of college I got a job with a big, west coast wall street firm, right in the financial district of San Francisco. So, I’m interested in the stock market, and economics, to me, is just how the world works. I usually have one of the financial channels on at my desk while I’m getting ready for my show and I always check the Wall Street Journal, SF Business Times and CNBC.
Peggy: What was your most difficult day on the air?
Pam: The most difficult day, by far, was September 11, 2001. We were on the air when the first plane hit; we were showing a live picture of New York and I watched, live, as the second plane hit. I watched it all and at the same time had to try to figure out what we were seeing and report to our viewers; it was surreal. Producers in the newsroom were yelling over to us that there are still two planes unaccounted for, one headed for San Francisco. My heart sank. I had friends working in the TransAmerica Building and the Bank of America building and I thought, my God, keep them safe.
Peggy: Ugh. I have goosebumps just thinking about that. I’m sure I was watching you at the time, because I had the news on as the second plane hit. We didn’t know each other yet; our girls were only two. I’m glad they were too young to know what was happening.
Peggy: What do you do if you’re in a funk and just don’t feel like going on camera?
Pam: Ah well, that’s where the acting comes in! Believe me, there are days when I’d like to roll in with jeans and a t-shirt, my hair in a ponytail, but, the show must go on! Pregnant and sick for the WHOLE nine months, both times, was the worst.
Peggy: Do you have a favorite inspirational book or quote?
Pam: Hmmm, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” But I’ll be honest, that’s a goal for me that I aspire to do. I try to practice what I preach! I absolutely love books and poetry and fictional novels, but the one I go back to all of the time is “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff…and it’s all Small Stuff”. My house isn’t perfectly organized and my car is filled with stuff that gets us from one activity to the next, but I mostly want to have time to enjoy my family so I gave up trying to be Martha Stewart.
Peggy: Dark or milk chocolate? Do you have a favorite brand?
Pam: I love that your blog is Success & Chocolate; I smiled when I first saw that! I love chocolate; it makes me happy. Since I was a young girl, my mom and I would take a break from shopping at the mall to sit and have a Godiva Truffle, heavenly, and I have passed that tradition on to my girls!
Peggy: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?
Pam: I love people, I love hearing their stories, but I’m happiest when I’m on the floor coloring or playing a game with my kids.
Peggy: Pam, thank you so much for squeezing me into your very busy schedule! I’m honored.