Hello Weird Not-Quite-Holiday Szn

I’m not quite ready to transition into Christmas yet. I’m not a strictly-after-Thanksgiving person, but I’m not done with the fall vibes associated with pre-Christmas. Soon, though. Give me another week or two.

I’ve definitely started on my Christmas shopping, though!

36 | If you could switch lives with one person for a day who would it be? Hmm. No one really. I like my life.
37 | What’s one thing you’ve always wanted to try, but you’ve been too scared to do it? Foster a dog.
38 | What’s the one thing you wish you knew at age 19? You do not need to “go out” in college to meet people. You are fun and funny and caring- people will like you most when you are yourself.
39 | Besides your phone and wallet, what’s a couple of must-have items in your purse? Kindle, hand sanitizer, mask.
40 | What is an alternate career you would be doing? I wanted to be a vet. In hindsight, I’d have hated it. Maybe a librarian? I still have hopes of running a dog shelter and becoming an author.
41 | What’s something you can’t do? A drumroll on a snare drum.
42 | Where was the best vacation you’ve ever taken? I loved being in Switzerland. But I love Williamsburg, too.
43 | What’s one city you have always dreamed of traveling to? London.
44 | What’s something you always travel with? Books and a beverage.
45 | Favorite food? Chinese food or anything seafood- shrimp, crab, fish!
46 | Favorite dessert? Crème brulee or ice cream.
47 | Hugs or Kisses? Neither really. Although I love both from Moo.
48 | What’s a movie that made you cry? The first movie I ever cried at was Airbud. Now I almost always cry.
49 | Girl crush? I think Olivia Munn is stunning.
50 | What’s one talent you wish you had? The ability to sing well.
51 | What’s your favorite exercise? Hiking & yoga.
52 | Jogging or swimming? Swimming.
53 | What’s your favorite fast food order? Pretty much chicken nuggets wherever I go.
54 | What’s something you don’t want to be doing in 10 years? Chasing after some false happiness.
55 | Favorite James Bond? Timothy Dalton and Pierce Brosnan were the best looking. I’m hoping the next Bond is Regé-Jean Page.
56 | Favorite superhero? I don’t really have one.
57 | What’s your favorite cocktail? I don’t have a favorite- I like sweet drinks.
58 | If you could master one instrument, what would it be? The piano.
59 | What is one thing you do want to be doing in 10 years? Writing a second or third novel & living in the country.
60 | Would you like to be famous? In what way? No thanks.
61 | What’s your favorite thing in the world? My family.
62 | What’s your favorite color? Yellow.
63 | Secret talent? I can read upside-down almost as fast as I can right-side-up.
64 | What is one hobby you will never give up? Reading and writing.
65 | What the biggest surprise you’ve ever had? Ever? I’m not sure. Lately? That K said yes to kittens.
66 | What is one trend you would never try? There are many trends I’ll never try. So far I’ve resisted tik tok.
67 | Who do you turn to when you are sad? K or my best friends. Or I sit quietly with God.
68 | What’s a trend you would like to see disappear forever? The need for everyone to share everything online. I’m over it.
69 | Last country visited? Canada, I think. 
70 | What’s your current TV obsession? Ted Lasso, obviously.

If you’ve hung around this long- thanks! What are your answers?

-Aud

Goodbye Spooky Szn

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve stared at the letters “szn” and tried to figure out what it meant. Even after knowing what it is, it still catches me mid-sentence and I’m like, “What?” I’ve googled it several times.

Anyway, I thought I’d do a tag post part one (today) and part two (Thursday), just for fun.

In honor of a gorgeous fall and the end of Halloween, please enjoy this video of animals nomming on pumpkins:

1 | Where would you go on a road trip? Yellowstone or Glacier National Park.
2 | What is your biggest weakness? Anxiety, which manifests into anger when not controlled.
3 | What’s your biggest strength? Remaining extremely calm in chaotic situations.
4 | What’s the biggest learning experience you’ve had? Traveling to India & having a baby.
5 | What’s your idea of a perfect date? Sitting on a patio with a view on a fall afternoon, sipping on sweet wine, and chatting.
6 | Favorite movie? Honestly, Talladega Nights. Lol
7 | What is a cause that is important to you? Animal welfare and female equality.
8 | What’s the best compliment you have ever received? When someone compliments my writing or K tells me I’m funny.
9 | When are you most inspired? When I’m in awe of natural beauty- trees, mountains, etc. Or in a very historic place.
10 | Sweet or savory? It depends on my taste buds. Usually something more refreshing.
11 | What is your biggest fear in life? Feeling out of control. Which is fun, because we’re never really in control.
12 | What makes you smile the most? Moo. She is hilarious.
13 | Heels, flats, or sneakers? Sneakers. My Birks when I’m not at work.
14 | What are three things you can’t live without? Something to read, animals, alone time.
15 | Window or aisle seat? Window.
16 | What’s one thing you had to learn the hard way? The people I love the most will not always agree with me.
17 | Leather or lace? Leather.
18 | What is the most adventurous thing you’ve done in your life? Traveling to India & having a baby. LOL
19 | How would you define yourself in three words? Observant. Headstrong. Empathetic.
20 | What’s your current favorite piece of clothing you own? I have an old college hoodie that I think belonged to my dad… My brother ended up with it, then I swiped it from him. It’s so cozy. That and my Birks.
21 | What’s a must-have clothing item that everyone should own? Something you feel GREAT in.
22 | What’s inspiring you in life right now? The drive to be a better person- for M & K. And to pour into the parts of my life that have been lacking and would bring me peace (i.e. spiritual life).
23 | What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? A lot of parenting advice… And the fact that nothing good happens when we react out of anger and frustration.
24 | What’s your pet peeve? Having to repeat myself because someone blatently wasn’t listening. And being ignored.
25 | Diamond or pearls?Diamonds.
26 | Winter or Summer? WINTER.
27 | Most recent dream you can remember? I honesty can’t remember any right now.
28 | What’s heavily played on your playlist right now? Lots of instrumental music based on mood- reading instrumental, rainy day instrument, Harry Potter instrumental.
29 | What’s your favorite board game? Ticket to Ride.
30 | Stairs or elevator? Elevator. Unless it’s only one or two floors.
31 | What book did you most recently finish? The Ex Hex by Erin Sterling. Finished it last night.
32 | What are you currently reading? Hunt, Gather, Parent: What Ancient Cultures Can Teach Us About the Lost Art of Raising Happy, Helpful Little Humans by Michaeleen Doucleff.
33 | How do you start your day? It’s chaos. I need it to be better. I roll out of bed, throw something together, get M up and dressed, and rush off to childcare and work. I need to work on this.
34 | What’s your favorite holiday? Christmas Eve, closely followed by Halloween.
35 | If you could raid one woman’s closet whose would it be? I’m not sure. I think Jennifer Aniston has a very laid back style. Hilary Duff and Hailey Bieber do, too.

Part II on Thursday!

-Aud

10 Things About School

First I say I’m taking a step back on the personal posts, then I come across these fun questions on Rebecca Jo’s blog and want to join in. I don’t have rhyme or reason for who I am. 😆

I believe these originated from Leslie at Once Upon A Time & Happily Ever After.

How old were you when you started school?  Did you attend pre-kinder and/or kinder or go straight into first grade? | I did a year of preschool(maybe 2?), a year of kindergarten, and started 1st grade in 1997. I would’ve been 6 going on 7.

Were you a good student? What was your favorite subject? | Grade-wise, I was a great student. I could be a little talkative, though. And I got a little lazy in high school. But I still maintained my grades.

My favorite subject was history/social studies. It still is. Closely followed by reading. (Remember when that was a subject and we complained about the homework? Geez… Didn’t know how good we had it.)

As a child, did you take music lessons? Or play a sport? Do you still play an instrument now? | I did not take music lessons, but I joined band in 5th grade and stuck with it through high school. I started on saxophone. Switched to percussion in 9th grade.

I played t-ball, then baseball, then softball for roughly 8 years. I took tennis lessons for a while. I did a year of cheerleading in middle school. I ran track for a year or two. Tried out for (and did not make) volleyball and basketball. Young Audrey did not realize how un-athletic she was. LOL

Did you attend any kind of training or classes beyond high school? If so, what did you study?  Did you wind up working in a profession or job for which those classes or training prepared you? | I went to college and got my bachelor’s degree in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication. I minored in business & English. Technically, yes- I am using my degree/education in my career.

Have you taken any personal growth or adult education classes for fun? During the year that was Covid, did you home school, learn a new app to work from home, teach yourself to do something you might have paid someone else to do for you? 
| No, not yet. I’d like to take a business-level Quickbooks course for work development. I’d also like to take a sign language course.

What would you like to learn how to do that you don’t know how to do already? | I wish I was fluent in another language. I also wish I knew how to write grants.

Name something that you learned easily. Then name something that was a struggle for you to learn to do. | Hmm. Honestly, I think I learned how to be a mom easily. It wasn’t/isn’t EASY, per se… but something clicked and taking care of M became second nature. I don’t question our relationship or how I should react to her. The same can be said about dogs. I understand how to interact with them, even the salty ones.

I don’t understand most math things. I also really struggle to understand audio wiring, which is embarrassing because it’s a huge part of my job. I try to study/learn and immediately forget.

What’s the last thing you remember learning? What kind of learner are you: visual, auditory, hands-on/kinesthetic, verbal, logical/mathematical? | I listened to the podcast Noble Blood yesterday so the last things I learned were details about the relationship between Queen Elizabeth and her cousin Mary Stuart. Lol

I typically learn in a hands-on fashion. I can listen to directions or watch someone do it, but I until I try it or write it down or experience it, I’m likely to forget it. (Podcasts are tough for me, lol.)

Hard to teach an old dog new tricks, school of hard knocks, pass with flying colors, learn by heart, burn the midnight oil, pull an all-nighter, play hooky – which of these expression best fits your life lately? Why? | I guess burning the midnight oil. I’m not up all night (because I would be a worthless sack of human if I was), but I stretch myself as thin as possible. Between being a mom, wife, homeowner, writer, and employee……. it’s very long hours at the moment.

What is something you’ve learned from past mistakes?
| Everything does not require my opinion, nor my participation. I’ve never had FOMO, but at one time I’d felt an obligation to attend or participate in every invitations or conversations. Turns out, I don’t need to. And I’m a LOT happier when I reserve myself for things I care about.

Bonus: Share your favorite learning/education quote.

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” 

Benjamin Franklin

Benji has a bunch of good ones, actually.

-Audrey

When It’s All Over…

I’ve seen it a thousand places a thousand times… There is no “back to normal” because we’re all going to come out of this pandemic completely changed. I definitely agree with that sentiment.

Kezzie came up with these post-isolation questions and Bev shared her answers the other day. I decided to play along because a) it looks fun and b) I’ve got nothing better to share after 3 weeks of doing nothing. Lol

1) Restaurant you would go out to…
The Dennison Yard, JNG, The Daily Grind… all local and delicious places ♥

2) Friend you would meet up with first…
My best friend’s girlfriend hasn’t met M yet and before this whole thing happened they had plans to fly up here from Florida so…. as soon as this is over I think they’re flying up to stay with us!

3) Place you would go…
Probably Target. Let’s be real.

4) Shop you would go to…
Target… Marshalls… HomeGoods… Although surprisingly I’m not dying to go because my bank account is pretty pleased with this isolation.

5) Food item you would buy/eat…
We’ve been able to get what we need but I’m looking forward to getting some steak and vegetables and beer, and having a cookout and bon fire with my family!

6) Cake you would eat…
I haven’t stopped eating cake 😬

7) Show you would/will go to see…
I’m dying to go to the movies. We’ve never been huge movie-goers but I want to get out and see something good. I might look for a play or two to attend, too! We actually have a performance center in our backyard- lol.

8) Concert you will go to watch…
We have no tickets on hand right now but there’s a summer country concert series at a nearby outdoor venue and I think we’re going to be getting ourselves some tix since I have a new appreciation for nights OUT.

9) Relative you will hug first…
My grandparents. K’s grandparents. No question.

10) Holiday you would go on…
We’re headed to Dallas in September to celebrate the wedding we had to miss in March. I’m also hoping for a trip in October for my 30th bday!

11) Other activity you would take part in…
I already have a haircut/coloring booked. I’m going to text my masseuse today to request an appointment once she’s back in business. I also want to take M to the park and the poor restless pups to daycare to play. And WORK.

M has 6 month pictures at the start of June. And we have some summer parties that we’re excited to go to!

12) Thing you would do at work…
Ahhhhh- I can’t wait to go back to my office and desk and work and coworkers. I miss going to work SO much. We have SO much to ship since all our customers (schools) shutdown before we closed the warehouse.

13) Item you would buy…
Truthfully, I don’t need to buy anything I can’t get now. That said, we’re going to need some baby gates soon. And baby proofing items. And a mop. LOL

Thank you for the questionnaire, Kezzie!

What are you all most looking forward to post-isolation?

(And happy birthday to my wonderful sister-in-law Lori!)

45 Questions (minus 35)

– tap – tap – tap – Is this thing on?

I unintentionally skipped blogging last week. Partially because I was unmotivated and partially because, like the rest of the world, I was going out of my mind.

Now that I’m adjusting to this eternal state of insanity, I guess life can continue as “usual.”

I found this article and, while I’m not trying to get any of y’all to fall in love with me, I thought some these would be some great blog questions! Also… I only picked out 10. I was just too lazy to change the post image 😆

1 | Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?
Kelly Clarkson, Chrissy Teigen, & Olivia Munn.

2 | Would you like to be famous? In what way?
Only as an author!

3 | When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?
…when was I last by myself? Lol. I sing to M all the time. Sometimes it’s a real song, sometimes it’s not, most of the time it’s a hybrid. Most recently it was The Circle of Life with many misspoken Swahilian words.

4 | Name three things you and your partner appear to have in common.
We have a similar sense of humor. We have a similar definition of loyalty. We have a similar love of dogs, cars, & justice.

5 | If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?
A real ability- being bilingual with serial languages. A superhuman ability- teleportation.

6 | What does friendship mean to you?
It means loving someone like family- maybe even more. Knowing that you will always be in their corner- even if that means delivering tough love and hard truths. It means celebrating the big and small moments, grieving the tough times, and knowing they would obviously help bury the body because they were there for the crime.

7 | Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you have time to safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why?
My stuffed bunny from my childhood… his name is Bunny (#creativechild) & he lives on the bookshelf in our bedroom.

8 | What is your most treasured memory?
Our wedding reception, playing trains and cars and in the sandbox with my brother when we were kids, M being born and K’s utter joy at her arrival, bringing home each of our dogs.

9 | What is your most terrible memory?
I have three (one is a dream that used to haunt me when I was young). All of them are of someone or a dog dying and me witnessing it. Two did actually happen to me and the dream was reoccurring and terrible.

10 | Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?
Nope. Do other people have these hunches? I have no idea… I’m hoping old age & in my sleep.

I’m going to get back to business soon… I want to write more Talk Baby 2 Me posts (hello finished nursery), I have some book reviews for the next SUYB (yay!), & I want to recap our NOLA trip from last freaking summer (yikes)- but this is what I came up with today.

What would you say to these questions?