Kaitlyn Smith of Glennville will graduate in May 2023 from Georgia Southern University with her bachelor’s degree in Elementary and Special Education, a career she is very passionate about.
Kaitlyn worked at Collins Elementary and Middle School during her junior year at Tattnall County High School for Work Based Learning. She continued working in education at a daycare in Lyons as a teacher’s assistant after graduating high school in 2017.
It was not until she began babysitting for a family in Glennville, the Daus family, that Kaitlyn realized she wanted to be a teacher who specialized in special education.
“This family will always hold a special place in my heart. I thank the Daus family dearly for helping me find my passion,” Kaitlyn said.
Kaitlyn is currently student teaching at North Tattnall Elementary School in a fourth-grade classroom. In addition, she owns her own online custom apparel business, Free Soul Designs, on Etsy. Several of her designs are perfect for Disney lovers!
“I opened this business in September 2020. I have always dreamt of running my own business, and now I am living that dream,” Kaitlyn said.
Kaitlyn’s hobbies include reading, crafting, and traveling.
“I enjoy reading, because it is my favorite way to relax and escape from reality,” Kaitlyn said. “I have enjoyed crafting with my mom since I was a little girl, and traveling has always been a passion of mine. My favorite places I have visited are Key West, Florida; San Francisco, California; and Orlando, Florida, to Disney and Universal Studios.”
Kaitlyn is the 23-year-old daughter of Kelli Sapp and Tommy Sapp of Claxton and Gary Sapp and Jennifer Sapp of Claxton.
“The biggest influence in my life is definetly my mama. I have always looked up to her as a role model and a best friend. She has taught me that if I work hard, no matter how tough may get, I can achieve my dreams,” Kaitlyn said.
Her siblings are the reason Kaitlyn works as hard as she does. Her siblings include: Morgan Sapp, 19; Aidan Sapp, 17; Jamie Sapp, 16; and Sara Sapp, 11, of Claxton.
“I always want to make sure my siblings have a positive role model they can look up to. They are some of my biggest supporters,” Kaitlyn said.
Kaitlyn lives in Glennville with her husband and best friend, Dylan Smith, and their Maltipoo, Nash. Dylan, 25, works at Canoochee Electric in Hinesville as a lineman.
In the kitchen
“If you know anything about my husband, you know I am the cook in the house,” Kaitlyn said with a laugh. “I learned a lot about cooking from my mom when I was growing up. I am also partially self-taught thanks to Pinterest.”
Kaitlyn’s favorite dish to eat is macaroni and cheese, a staple in her house when she was little. She most enjoys preparing white chicken chili during the fall and winter, ideally on a chilly day.
“I enjoy cooking, because I find it very relaxing. I also love serving others food they will enjoy,” Kaitlyn said.
Kaitlyn Smith’s Recipes
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast
1 onion diced
24 oz. chicken broth
1 4 oz. can of diced green chiles
1 15 oz. can of whole
1 15 oz. can of great northern beans
½ tsp. chili powder
¼ cup heavy whipping cream
8 oz. cream cheese
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Add chicken breast to the bottom of the crockpot, top with cayenne pepper chili powder, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Top with diced onions, great northern beans, green chiles, corn, and chicken broth. Stir. Cover and cook on low for eight hours or high for three to four hours. Re-move chicken and place in a large bowl, shred, and then return to the crockpot. Add cream cheese and half and half, stir, then cover and cook on high for 15 minutes or until chili is creamy and slightly thickened. Stir well and serve with desired toppings. Enjoy!
1 block Velvetta cheese
1 block pepper jack cheese
1 can rotel
1 small can of green chiles
1 yellow onion diced
1 lb. ground beef (cooked and chopped)
Chop Velvetta and pepper jack cheese into 1-inch cubes. Add cheese, rotel (with liquid), chiles, onion, and cooked ground beef to a 9x13 aluminum pan. Turn smoker or grill on to 250 degrees and place the dip on the smoker uncovered. Stir every 15-20 minutes until the cheese is melt-ed. Serve with tortilla chips or your favorite dipper and enjoy.
16 oz. whipped topping (Cool Whip)
½ cup unsalted butter melted
1 cup all purpose flour
1 ½ cups finely chopped pecans (divided)
1 8 oz. pack of cream cheese (room temperature)
Pinch of salt
1 cup powdered sugar
2 small boxes instant chocolate pudding
3 cups milk
Combine your flour, butter, salt, and 1 cup of pecans. Press into the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Bake at 325 degrees for 25 minutes. Cool completely. Mix cream cheese and powdered sugar with a mixer until smooth. Fold in half of the whipped topping, then mix until combined.
Spread cream cheese mixture evenly on the crust. Mix pudding packets and milk with a mixer until convinced and then mix on medium speed for two minutes. Spread chocolate mixture evenly onto cream cheese layer. Spread remaining whipped topping onto chocolate layer then sprinkle with remaining pecans and enjoy.