Today, I'm swapping questions with my bloggy friend Tamara from Tamara (Like) Camera. I am so happy that I'm going to get to meet Tamara and hang out with her in June at BlogU! Tamara writes with such emotion and depth in each of her posts. She is also a photographer and, in her posts, she includes many photos. They are all so incredible and wonderful. Her photos convey as much meaning and feeling as her words do. I should expect it by now, but I am blown away every single time.
Tamara is a contributing author to The Mother Of All Meltdowns as well. Speaking of that, next week, MOAM is kicking off a HUGE Mother's Day Extravaganza! I can't divulge too many details, but we are going to be giving away some awesome prizes that I assure you any mother would LOVE!!! See the graphic below for a few hints and be sure to follow us on Facebook so you don't miss out on your chance to win!!!!
And now, on with the questions!! Here are my answers to the questions Tamara gave me. After reading them, head over to her blog to see her answers to my questions.
I grew up in a small town, so there were no concerts close by. I was in high school when I went to my first concert. It was a Reba McEntire concert and I went with my friend Mitch. I remember my mom being a little nervous to let him drive us to a "big" city (Charlotte) that was about two hours way. We had fun singing along with the radio all the way there. At the concert, we had lawn seats, but it was still great! (Thanks, Mitch!)
2. We will meet this spring at BlogU! I can't wait! How are you feeling about the conference? Nervous? Excited? What is making you most excited or nervous?
Right now, I'm mostly excited. I'm sure I will have some nerves as it gets closer. This might sound corny to someone who doesn't blog, but I really feel like some of my best friends are bloggers that I've never met. I am so eager to meet the ones who will be there, but I am an introvert and self-doubter by nature, so I hope everyone still likes me after they meet me in person! I'm also hoping to get some writing tips and learn more about how to get my writing "out there."
3. Can you share a recent photo and tell me the story behind it?
I took my girls spring shopping a couple weeks ago, but then the weather turned cold again and they weren't able to wear any of their new clothes - until last weekend. The weather turned warm again for a couple days and they could not wait to slip into shorts and flip flops. My youngest, Emily, is my little fashionista and was VERY excited to wear this new outfit. I put her hair in the braids and she just looked so cheery and cute, I snapped this photo with my iPhone as we were heading out to my other daughter's soccer game on Saturday.
4. What profession would you most like to try? And what profession would you most hate to try?
Before I had kids, I was a preschool teacher in the public school system. It's been over a decade since I left that world, and, honestly, I have no desire to go back.
I would love to make a career out of my writing. As I mentioned, that's something I hope to learn more about at BlogU. I still hesitate to call myself a writer, but, as superficial as it sounds, I think getting paid to do it would make me feel validated. It would allow me to do something I love and receive tangible benefits from it.
On a completely hypothetical level, I would love to be a musician. I love music, but am not musically talented. If I could suddenly be gifted with a beautiful voice or a knack for playing an instrument, I would love to spend all my time writing, singing, listening to, and playing music.
What job I would hate? Sales. Which is ironic because that's what my husband does. I'm just too introverted and uncomfortable when approaching people. I would also loathe anything like accounting that deals heavily with numbers. Math is not my strong suit at all!
5. You started blogging around when I did! What is the most important thing you've learned about yourself from blogging?
This was a tough one, but I'm glad you made me think about it. I think the biggest thing I have learned about myself is that I have something worthwhile to offer the world. I spent a lot of my life fading into the background by choice because that's where I thought I belonged. I wasn't a fabulous musician or artist of any kind. I wasn't a star athlete. I'm certainly no beauty queen. I felt very plain and average. I felt that there was nothing very exceptional about me.
Now, when people tell me that my writing has touched them or made them smile or helped them feel better about their own circumstances in some way, I think to myself "I did that. MY words did that." That is a talent and a gift that I DO have and I'm proud of that. I'm glad that I have finally found my gift and the courage to share it.
6. I read about you being a picky eater, which is totally me too, and I'm actually afraid to travel to countries in which I can't drink the water or comfortably eat the food. What are your favorite foods?
I love pizza and pasta. I eat a lot of chicken, too. It is my protein of choice. I definitely have a sweet tooth as well and love chocolate, cheesecake, cookies, and candy.
7. Sophie is adorable! Tell me the story of how she came into your lives. And do you have any wisdom for the puppy stage? I'm going to need it!
Thanks! David and I both grew up with dogs and, shortly after we bought our first house, we went to our local animal shelter and got a dog of our own. Her name was Maggie and she was a GermanShepherd/Chow mix. She was great when it was just us adults, but if you know anything about chows, you know that they can be rather unfriendly and they aren't good with kids. So, when Maggie passed away in 2010, we thought long and hard about what kind of dog we wanted to get. For several reasons, we decided we wanted a border collie, but pure border collies are crazy expensive! I found some online for $1000 or more. While searching online, I stumbled across a litter of border collie mix puppies that had been rescued from a shelter. They had been dropped off at the shelter probably hours after they were born. At that stage, they require such intensive care, the shelter was going to put them down, but a lady who runs her own small rescue program saved them. We went to visit and saw all the dogs in the litter. My husband really wanted a boy dog since everyone else in the family is female, but when we got there, the only two males in the litter had already been spoken for. We petted them and played with them. At one point, my husband picked up one of the puppies and she nuzzled right up to him. He was hooked and we knew she was the one. We had to wait about three weeks before she was big enough for us to take her home, but, now, she is part of our family and we love her.
Oh, as for advice for you - crate train her. We had never done it before, but we are still so glad we did it with Sophie.
8. Other than BlogU, do you have any plans for travel this spring/summer (or even fall)?
We go in together with David's family and rent a big beach house every summer. We will be doing that in mid June. We are also going to Hilton Head for a few days with my friend Mitch (See #1) and his family in July. My hubby travels a lot and my girls want to travel more, so we might take a trip to a fun city somewhere, but don't have any definite plans yet.
9. What have you learned today?
Oy! It's been quite a day. Actually, it's been quite a week (and it's only Wednesday as I type this!). One thing I've learned today is how I will answer now anytime someone asks me question #5. I hadn't really thought about that before you asked. I was also reminded that it's o.k. to say "no." I was asked to join a committee today, but I'm kind of drowning this week and simply cannot imagine adding anything else to my plate, so I politely declined. I also told my daughter's middle school that I will not be leading the writing club again next quarter. I always feel guilty when I turn people down, but I simply cannot do it all. I learned that a long time ago, but sometimes I need the reminder.
10. I saw that someone had asked you about YOU, but I wanted to know about your husband. What traits of his do you see in each of your daughters?
For starters, they look very much like him, especially my youngest. When I shared my Twenty Random Facts I About Me, I mentioned that all my girls can roll their tongue like my husband. It's genetic and I can't do it. He is adopted, so it is really cool for him to see such an obvious genetic connection.
Personality wise, my oldest loves to build things and figure out how things work. That is totally my husband! My middle one is most like David. She is a ball of energy and she always seems to find the positive in any situation. She loves math and does not like reading. All of these are traits my husband has as well. My youngest is very witty, like him. She has made some quick retorts that have put us on the floor laughing.
He has high expectations for our girls and is hard on them sometimes, but he's a great dad and he has a unique, special relationship with each girl. They love him so much and I do, too!
This post is part of Finish The Sentence Friday. FTSF is hosted by some wonderful blogging ladies. Please give them a visit and check out all the other blogs that participate as well!
Janine at Janine’s Confessions of a Mommyaholic
Stephanie at Mommy, for Real
Kristi at Finding Ninee
Ask Away Friday is a fun blog hop in which two bloggers trade ten questions, then answer them on their blogs. It's a great way to connect and get to know other bloggers! It is hosted by:
Penny from the Real Housewife of Caroline County
Tiffany from Mrs. Tee – Love Life and Laughter
Amber from Bold Fab Mom
Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings