This week's WAG Feature Wednesday is of the beautiful, smart, and funny Amber Miller. Amber was a personal training client of mine last year but we have kept in contact since, sharing similar interests in staying fit and supporting our NFL-playing men. Amber and I used the interview as a chance to grab a bite to eat and chat in her new home! Read what this Southern bride-to-be and high school teacher had to say about career and football life below...
NFL WAG Stats
Name: Amber Miller
Fiancé: Kevin Cone
Fiance is Rookie or Veteran: Going into his 5th season [Falcons, Dolphins (pre season), Arizona (pre season), Tampa Bay, Cleveland, Dolphins (pre season), Currently in CFL (Winnipeg Blue Bombers)]
NFLWAG: Going on 5 years
Cities You've Lived in with NFL: I've never moved.
Off Season Home: Atlanta
Favorite Food: Macaroni and Cheese is my favorite dish and lemon peels.
Music on your iTunes: I don’t have iTunes. I don’t listen to music besides Sirius XM. Right now it's on The Heat (Hip Hop). It’s nice to listen to trap music on the way to your professional job.
Hobbies: I love to paint and read. Generally, I use acrylic paint on canvas. I’m reading Charlaine Harris currently.
Interesting Facts: I was the first person in my family to graduate from college (Georgia Southern) and get a Master’s (UGA). I have a MAT in Science Education. I currently teach Biology to Freshman and APES (AP Environmental Science) to Juniors and Seniors.
Oftentimes, people want to define you based on what your significant other does. You can’t define me by someone else’s merit. - Amber Miller, NFL Fiancee
LM: Where are you from originally and how did you get to where you are now?
AM: I was born in Decatur, Ga but was raised mainly in Stone Mountain, Ga. I got to where I am now through hard work and tears. I had to figure it all out by myself being a first generation college student. After I graduated from college, I moved back with my parents and worked at Home Depot in the electrical department. I would cut your wire and teach you how to install 3-way light fixtures. Then I realized that wasn't exactly what I wanted in life. I always felt most comfortable and safe at school. I attributed that to my teachers because they always made me feel special. Eventually, I arrived at the idea of teaching so I applied to UGA. I graduated from UGA in May 2011 and I've been teaching ever since.
LM: How did you and Kevin meet?
AM: [Laughs]. My sister and his sister are best friends. The first time we met, we went to the Stone Mountain laser show with our sisters. Ironically, our parents live in the same neighborhood but I didn’t meet him until my first year at UGA. Growing up, Kevin attended private school and I went to public school so I didn’t know he existed. My mom didn’t really let us leave the house so I wouldn’t have met neighborhood friends.
When we did finally meet, he had a girlfriend but I wasn't feeling him like that anyway. When he graduated from Georgia Tech, he invited me to his graduation party since we lived in the same neighborhood. We connected at his party and exchanged numbers afterward. I should mention here that things didn't work out with his girlfriend. I was still in school at that time and Kevin would be at home working out and training. He cooked lunch for me almost daily. I would walk to his house, eat, then go to school (UGA). That's how you get me! You get me with food. We really started off as friends because I like to eat. No romantic situation there. It progressed from there.
LM: How long have you and Kevin been together?
AM: Officially since August 9, 2011.
I read somewhere that the top occupation for NFL women is teachers.
LM: You are recently engaged! Congratulations! How did he propose?
AM: Well, the trip started off simple enough. We had planned to go to Niagara Falls, Canada for a long weekend before I had to start my summer Gifted Endorsement. I flew to Cleveland (where he was playing at the time) and we drove to Niagara Falls from there. SIDENOTE: Who knew it was so close! We got there and had a great first night sightseeing.
The second day we woke up early, drove across the border back to the states (New York) to do the Maid of the Mist boat tour. It was amazing, beautiful, wonderful, great...all those nice words. We drove back across the border to Canada afterward and I was ready for a nap. Turns out Kevin had made plans for lunch so instead of a nap I had to shower and change clothes (we were soaking wet from the Falls). We went to Skylon, a rotating tower similar to the Sun Dial here in Atlanta, and had a great lunch. Okay, so now I'm tired from the boat trip and from a huge lunch. I need a nap! As we're leaving, Kevin insists that we need to keep sightseeing instead of napping, as to not have a wasted trip. I reluctantly walked with him back to the Falls and I am semi-angry the entire way- full, hot, and miserable. We get to the sidewalk near the Falls and I proceed to get my tourist on, taking photos and enjoying the scenery- not paying Kevin any attention.
He calls my name and I respond without looking. He calls me again, so with my attitude (like we discussed earlier) I swivel around and say, "WHAT?!"...and there he is on his knee. Honestly, I thought he was tying his shoe so I turned back around. He gets me to look at him again and there he is with a little box. I didn't know what was going on for a second and then it hit me. Accompanied by some lovely words, he asks me to marry him. I'd completely blocked out all of the other tourists and people around; I swear the world was muffled for that moment. I could hear my heartbeating so rapidly.
Talk about speechless! All I could do was hug him and eventually got out the word, "YES!" The crowd went wild, and people were clapping and cheering.
I later found out he was walking around with the ring box in his sock (since lunch), and hired a photographer to follow us around and take pictures! Yes, the photog has pics of me being grumpy! We immediately took some professional engagement photos in a nice park across the street from the Falls. After the photos, we walked back to the hotel where I was finally able to take my nap! It was so unexpected as we said we would talk about marriage AFTER football. What I envisioned as just a nice weekend getaway turned out to be something super special that I'll never forget .
LM: Wow! What a great story! That attitude is too funny. I'm sure many women can relate. Sounds like a magical weekend. Let's get into what your days are like in Georgia. What is a typical day like for you?
AM: I wake up at about 6:30 a.m., play with my cat Sheldon for five minutes, get ready for work, and go to work. I have five classes (30-ish students in each class). From there it's Ms. Miller and serious face. School gets out at 3:30 p.m. and I’m not done yet. There’s always some sort of meeting after school related to my students or emails from parents and colleagues. There’s always something for me to do. I get to school early and I always stay late. I’m always there 2 to 2 1/2 hours more than I’m contracted to be. If I don’t work those extra hours, I’ll be behind and the kids won’t get what they need. That’s not fair. I’m there for the kids! Outside of school, I have meetings with students and parents, grade papers, make copies, and set up lab. I may spend 30 minutes to an hour daily grading papers. I get emails through the weekend. Parents will email me at 11:30 p.m. and all kinds of crazy hours. This semester I have 161 students. It’s stressful sometimes because you have to be cordial to everyone no matter what. I read somewhere that the top occupation for NFL women is teachers. I thought that was interesting because I don’t see teachers and football going together. They don’t match.
LM: You two recently moved into your new home. Congratulations! What were some of the factors you both weighed when deciding where to live?
AM: We want to have kids within the next two years so we looked into good school systems, enough bedrooms, and an area with low crime. I was living downtown in Vine City and that's one of Atlanta's high crime areas. I recently got a new teaching job so our new house is close to my job and in a good area.
LM: What are the pros and cons of being engaged to an NFL player?
AM: Cons right now would be the distance. I live here in Georgia and he’s in Winnipeg, Canada right now but he could be anywhere. The pros would be…I think it’s just his personality. He’s understanding of the demands on me. I understand that his work is demanding and he understands I have stuff to do and we’re both okay with that. I don’t work a 9-5. It’s whenever parents and students need me.
LM: What is your love advice to women?
AM: Always be kind even when you don’t want to be. I have a temper and can be moody sometimes but I have to step back a lot and think about if I would want someone to say that to me. Be mindful of what you say. If he asks you to send him banana bread 1000 miles away, just go ahead and do it. He texted me the other day and said, "Babe, I think that banana bread really made me do good in practice. You gotta send me some more.”
LM: Oh, that's funny! Nice of you to do that though. What do you think are the common misconceptions about NFL WAGS?
AM: Overall, most people on the outside looking in think we’re spoiled and kept women who can’t or won’t do for themselves. That’s a big misconception! Even my students will say, “If he’s in the NFL, why are you here?” and I’m like, "What do you mean, 'Why am I here?' This is my job!" Oftentimes, people want to define you based on what your significant other does. You can’t define me by someone else’s merit.
LM: Talk about what the NFL has meant for your family.
AM: For me, a lot of what it's meant has been financial. We were able to purchase this new home. Other than that, it’s meant traveling and getting to hang out in new cities for the Summer and Spring Break. Kevin is really big into charities, especially the team community outreach. He is the first one to sign up for those events and if he can bring me, he will. That’s always nice. We enjoy the events with kids (reading books to elementary school kids, etc). It’s nice to see the business side of it (banquets, donations, etc).It’s also been a lot of headache to coordinate my work schedule with Kevin’s. I know it's selfish to think this way but sometimes I wish he had an easier schedule.
LM: What would you like people to know about you?
AM: I am strange at times but it’s okay to be strange. You don’t have to try to fit into somebody’s box. That’s what I try to teach my students. Don't go out and do crazy stuff but if you’re within the law, it’s okay for you to be yourself and relax; don't be so uptight.
LM: What type of activities, specifically, do you do with your fiancé?
AM: We like to travel. We travel stateside mainly but if I have some time off , we’ll go anywhere. We like to go to vineyards. We’re part of wine clubs. We love to go out to restaurants. I’m not a big cooker but Kevin is. Kevin loves lists. His phone has a lot of lists. We use this app called Couple where you and your partner can create lists to view. Kevin makes lists about everything. He has lists titled, “Things I love about you” and “Dates we need to go on” for example.
LM: What are some of those date ideas he has?
AM: Apple picking, fishing, hot air balloon ride, Star Wars movie marathon, and making our own bread
LM: Has he mentioned what he would like to do in the future?
AM: I could see him being a PE teacher with little kids or working at a vet’s office. He’s a dog whisperer. It’s crazy! He wants to do some internships with the NFL. He wants to start up a nonprofit working with kids and sports. Right now he’s getting his Master’s at Georgia State (MBA) during the off season. He took 2 or 3 classes during the season when he was with the Falcons so that was hard. He always takes classes in the off season though. He’ll drag me to some of his group meetings when they do projects and it’s cool to see him in that element. Whatever he does, it’ll probably involve owning his own business dealing with kids, sports, or both. He did work for Westinghouse. He worked as an engineering intern with nuclear power plants. His possibilities are endless.
LM: What is Kevin’s degree in?
KC: His degree is in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech. He’s super into Math and all that.
LM: Impressive! What about you? What are your long term goals?
AM: Ideally, as far as work goals I want to work for the County as some sort of professional development coach or educational coach for teachers. I want to help teachers teach students. I don't want to be in the classroom forever. I want to be a classroom teacher for at least ten years though. I’ve been teaching for five years already so I'm halfway there. I also want to learn how to do nails even if I don’t apply it as a career because I love nails. I want to be a mom and raise decent people.
LM: Anything else you would like to add?
AM: I LOVE my cat Sheldon. He’s my first child.
Hilarious! What a fun interview! I'm excited to catch up with Amber later in the season to see what the Canadian Football League experience is like.