Fluvanna Faces: Gwen Antesberger

By Madeline Otten

Where do you live?

“Out in the country, off of what one local told me that back in the day the road we live off of used to be known as Old Ham Bone Jones Road.”

How long have you lived in Fluvanna County? What brought you here?

“We moved here a few years ago to relocate for my husband’s job.”

Tell us about your family –

“My husband, of 31 years and I met on April Fool’s Day, 31-years ago at McCord Air Force Base (where I was born too). We have lived on both coasts, have seven children (two grown and on their own so far), a young dog, and an old cat.”

What did you want to be when you were growing up?

“Well, when I was in elementary school, I imagined myself as Wonder Woman while spinning on the picnic table in our backyard with a beach towel tied around my neck.  Then when I thought I knew everything, at sixteen, I wanted to be an attorney.  I’ve had the privilege of being a wife and mom, who has also been able to work.  I consider myself still ‘growing up,’ and I look forward to dreaming for myself and my family.

What was your very first job?

“I worked in a lawn and garden center. I recall the first day, not knowing the difference between impatiens and petunias like it was yesterday.  I ended up spending my summers through high school lugging bark chips, pinching back petunias, and wrangling hoses. I learned a lot about gardening and paid my way through college.”

What do you do for a living?

“My weekdays are spent working side-by-side with a fantastic team in the Administration Offices at Lake Monticello as the Manager of Member Services and Communication.”

What do you like to do in your spare time?

“Gardening (aka chasing deer from the yard), knitting, sewing face masks, and cherishing every minute I can spend with my family.”

What is one food that you could never live without and one you can never bring yourself to eat?

“Genuine smoked ANYTHING … going to shout out to Wahoo BBQ.  It takes all I can do to drive past that place and not stop to pick something up. This girl can’t do brussel sprouts!”

If there was a zombie apocalypse, who are three people you would want on your team?

“My dear husband, John; James Alexander Malcolm Mackenzie Fraser, those who recognize the name will probably agree; and Murtagh Fitzgibbons Fraser.  If the last two survived the Battle of Culloden, they can survive a zombie apocalypse.  I would follow them all to Hell and back again.”

What are your three favorite movies?

“Last of the Mohicans 1992, Pride and Prejudice 2005, and Arsenic and Old Lace, 1944. The first a great adventure and the first two romance both with amazing soundtracks. The last is a sick comedy with mystery and suspense and, in the end, a romance. I’ve seen it many times and just last week watched it again, and it was as fresh and funny as the first time I watched it.”

Which is better – a novel or a movie?

“A novel, it lasts longer for me. I like to ponder and enjoy the adventure longer than the duration of a movie – however, I prefer multiple seasons on a streaming service, BUT I won’t binge.”

What fictional character do you wish you could meet and why?

“I’d like to have Sherlock Holmes over to dinner. He is witty, eccentric, and enlightened. It would be fascinating to have him stay to play Words Against Humanity.”

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

“Kindness cures all ill will.”

What pivotal decision helped to shape your life?

“After graduating from college, I moved to the Seattle area from Upstate New York.  Completely different culture, lifestyle, new job, new friends… I learned to lean on the lessons and faith given to me by my parents. “I began to appreciate my relationship with my parents as an adult rather than a child.

Tell us about a way you have changed over the years.

“I’ve learned to not get upset by the little things, and more importantly, that most things are little things.”

What has surprised you about your life?

“How precious and delicate life is.  Enjoy, cherish, celebrate, and don’t rubberneck the drama.”

What’s one thing you hope to accomplish before you die?

“To build the house that our family flocks to for refuge and fun after they have grown and started their own families.”

Tell us about one of your regrets.

“I have no regrets because everything I’ve experienced in my past has meaning.”

Tell us about your proudest moment.

“The birth of each of my children was my proudest moment(s).”

Where is your favorite place to travel to and why?

“I enjoy traveling to places off the beaten path, in the mountains, and near water.  My happiest moments as a child were camping and sailing.”

When you are having a bad day, what do you do to make yourself feel better?

“Take a deep breath, turn on some music, and pray.”

What quote or saying do you connect with most? Why do you like it?

“The better ambitions have to do with the development of character and ability, rather than status and power. Status you can lose. You carry character with you wherever you go, and it allows you to prevail against adversity.” ― Jordan B. Peterson, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos


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