My mom has two brothers, one of which never married; the other got married and had three kids but after he got divorced I went almost twenty years without seeing any of them, and also two step-cousins who I have seen only once or twice ever. My dad has one sister, who has one daughter named Katie, and she is pretty much the only cousin I have ever known! So today, we shall find out a bit more about this one mysterious cousin as I continue to interview the ladies of the family.

Katie Wilkins
Katie Wilkins, cousin on my dad's side

1. So, I haven’t seen you in over a year. Where do you live and what do you do for a job these days?

Wow, it has been that long! In June of 2008 I moved to Sioux Falls and started working at the Social Security Administration and that’s where I remain today. This summer I went through a 3 month training for my promotion to a Claims Representative. I now take claims for Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income, a needs based disability program. It’s a very challenging and frequently changing job.

2. I noticed you have a boyfriend named Brandon. How did you two meet?

Well we kind of knew each other from growing up in the same town, but we officially got together at the senior graduation keg in 2003. I was the designated drive, of course! Brandon had just turned 21 and I was a month shy of turning 16. Since then we’ve dated off and on, more off than on, but we’ve been back together for over 13 months now. I moved in with him at the beginning of 2010, and unbeknownst to my mom, I am not happy still being un-married! Hopefully that will change in the very near future! However, I am not anxious to have kids anytime soon.

3. I saw on Facebook you took in the Sturgis Bike Rally this summer. Do you drive a motorcycle? What were the highlights of your trip?

No, I don’t ride myself, but my dad’s been wanting to teach me for years. I’m thinking about taking him up on that offer. I’m actually disappointed with our lack of excitement on the trip. We didn’t go on many rides or see anything great. We did take a few rides on the Sling Shot at the Full Throttle Saloon. It’s a 2 person capsule that shoots you 200 feet into the air going about 100 MPH. Other than that, the most enjoyable times were in the campground hanging out with Brandon’s family. I’m sure Brandon’s highlights were the slingshot and the Full Throttle pole dancers right by our camping spot.

4. Are you still a piano player like your mother?

I wish. I haven’t played in years and I really regret not keeping up with it. I’ve considered buying a keyboard to teach myself again.

5. What is your favorite or funniest memory from that summer when you lived on the farm with Granny in the mid-90s?

That seems like SO long ago! I’d have to say my favorite memory is of the pool. I think I wanted to spend every waking moment there, even though I lack the ability to swim. I believe I had a pool party for my birthday that summer.

6. Did you used to hang out with Jordan on occasion when you were going to USD?

We got together a few times, but not a lot. One specific time I remember is when she was just getting started with photography. We had a photo shoot around good ole Vermillion in the middle of winter and in she and Calvin’s cramped little apartment. During my last year in Vermillion I lived just across the parking lot and a plot of grass from Jordan and her family. I think I may have visited a few nights when the Krogman kids were playing outside.

7. What is your all-time best athletic achievement?

HA! None, as I am NOT athletic! I was only in sports in elementary and middle school because all my friends were. I’m really proud of sticking with volleyball for 2 years in middle school. I don’t think I was absolutely horrible and all the running really got me in shape! I also enjoyed cheerleading in middle school, but I never achieved anything great with that either.

8. What are your three favorite TV shows of all-time?

Of all-time? That’s a tough one! I never missed Tool Time when I was younger and loved watching it with my dad. I could also never get sick of Scrubs. I don’t know about a third all time favorite. Right now I really enjoy Criminal Minds and Brandon got me addicted to Big Bang Theory.

Note: Later on, Katie wrote back and said this: “Wait.. the show with Tim was Home Improvement!  Tool Time was his show on the show, right?  Whoops.  Maybe it wasn’t my favorite if I can’t even remember that.”

9. What is your biggest day-to-day concern currently?

I’d have to say money. I’m always putting money into my savings account but it quickly depletes because of student loans. Brandon and I both want to go back to school and that certainly won’t be cheap. It just frustrates me because we have so many things we hope to accomplish, but none of them are free. Wish I could win the lottery!

10. Thanks for joining us today Katie. Any closing remarks?

Thanks for interviewing me for the first time ever! I’m glad I got to do it in the comfort of my pj’s on my very lazy day off.