I had the kind of day yesterday in which I watched sad and/or inspiring videos on the internet just to induce tears. I really believe I would be happy if every single day could be sunny and 75, without a trace of humidity. San Diego, anyone?
I’d take mountains. I’d take salty dog beaches. I’d take anywhere that never rained, or if it did rain, it was only at night with romantic thunderstorms. Or it all happened in one day, just like Bradbury’s “All Summer In a Day” in which all of the sunlight on Venus takes place for one hour every seven years. I’d take that as a single gloomy, rainy, humid day – once every seven years. Luckily, my Ask Away Friday Partner this week is the endlessly fascinating April, from 100lb Countdown – a blog focusing on, you guessed it, losing 100 pounds. She is a beautiful wife, mother, blogger, entrepreneur and lawyer. She has an inspiring love story, a sad story, and many more posts about connections, family, her mother, healthy living, and more. Check her out!
It is time for the all new #AskAwayFriday! Get to know our new hosts, meet our new co-host, and grab our new logo! Be sure to check out our new Facebook page “AskAwayFriday” for a great place to meet up and send out a #BuddyRequest if you need a partner to swap with! And always feel free to contact me here or anywhere if you want to swap with me.
#AskAwayFriday was created by the amazing Penny from Real Housewife of Caroline County as a place for us to connect with other bloggers by asking them ten questions to really get to know them. The sky is the limit with the questions you ask!
Tiffany from Mrs. Tee Love Life Laughter,
Christy from Uplifting Families,
Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings
Amber from Bold Fit Mom
Shelly is a new Mama and a DIY Pro. When you visit her site you can look for a bit of fun, craft and organization. Did I mention she is also a Pro on all things Disney? Yes, so if you want to know the where to go and Must See on Disney be sure to head over and check out Shelly’s place.
Make sure you read April’s answers to my questions HERE. And now for my answers to her questions:
1. As a blogger, we are told that we should strive to have lots of comments. I can’t help but notice that your blog posts tend to have over 100 comments each! How do you do that? Are they the product of you being the Queen of Commenting? Or something else?
Maybe a combination of things! When I first started visiting SITS every day, I came across a blogger who at first intimidated the heck out of me with this post: “24 Reasons You Don’t Have Comments On Your Blog.” I remember thinking that a lot of those reasons resonated with me and I began to change my ways of blogging. I am great at commenting because I genuinely care. The thing is, my volume is so high right now that I don’t actively seek out new blogs as much as I did in the past, but every week or so, new bloggers will come to visit and I can’t help but visit back. Often, new friendships are formed. I always have room in my heart and in my reading time to welcome new bloggers here. And sometimes my in-person family & friends comment too!
I can only get work done when these three aren’t on the loose, though!
2. You mentioned that blogging and commenting 6-18 hours a week. With Bee being 2 and Butterfly at 7 months, I’m struggling to just get a post up. How do you organize your day to get all that done? What’s your day like?
It used to be easier. I’ve had to let up, but I still devote a ton of time to scheduling my three posts. I wake up with the kids and spend all morning with one or both of them, depending on preschool. While Des naps in the afternoon, Scarlet will have 1-2 hours of playing/drawing. That’s when I work. I’ll do an hour of working on photos/blogging and an hour of reading/commenting. Then we do something fun until Cassidy comes home. Night time and weekends are for catch up! There is endless work to be done in building my blog and building my photography business, but the kids and dog come first with me.
They need to run around a lot.
3. I noticed that a lot of your posts are lengthy, even without pictures. The common recommendation is that it should be a shorter post. I know my writing suffers in an attempt to be succinct. As a frequent reader and commenter, what do you like? Do you feel that long posts are rambling?
I’m laughing because mine used to be SO MUCH LONGER. Without photos to break them up. Over time, I’ve learned to break up posts and do series if it’s too much to talk about. I think if I’m really crunched for time, I can’t lie that I’d prefer to read shorter articles and posts, but most importantly – people need to get out all that they need to get out. I wouldn’t want anything to cut that short. Constant repeating might seem like rambling to me, but I don’t see it often. Gotta do what you gotta do!
4. Now that I’ve moved to Florida, I’ve encountered some of the worst driving. Somehow some drivers manage to not pull out to make a left turn while others stop in the middle of the intersection while going straight. It’s driving me crazy. What is your biggest pet peeve?
My sister used to say the most common thing I said on the road why, “Why are you braking on a highway??” So a big pet peeve is how stupid and selfish people can be. I’ve got precious cargo in my car! And I’m including myself. However my biggest pet peeve is really when someone is slow in the left lane and they don’t notice the long line behind them, and for many miles, people are just..stuck. They can’t get to the right lane (not that they should weave) and they’re stuck in the left. It’s just..deplorable.
5. I lived in California my entire life and in Northern California for three years, in Davis. Each area of California has his own vibe. What was the best and worst thing you liked about SF?
Ok, I’ll go worst first. I’m not cut out for city life. And the homelessness, drugs, puddles of vomit on the streets? I just..couldn’t. I became a shell of myself there. And what was the best? It’s hard to explain. It’s just a feeling of youthful dreaming – my life spread out as wide and as wonderfully as a Pacific coast beach. I miss the epic beauty, the breathlessness, the feelings of youth and intense love and feeling like I was finally living in dreams. It’s a power I can’t define or describe. It just is.
6. If money was no object, please describe your dream home in any details you’ve dreamed of? Pictures please, if you have one!
Well, we kind of have it. Our home has the seeds for it! I love that modern rustic farmhouse/ski lodge type thing. MODERN, though. I don’t want a fixer upper. I want an updated kitchen, tons of light, open areas, geeky sci-fi memorabilia, my photography on canvases, a master bedroom suite with walk-in closets and a jacuzzi tub. A treehouse. Beautifully large kids’ rooms and guest rooms. THREE or more bathrooms. Fireplaces. Amazing views. An outdoor hot tub.. Secret hiding places. A finished basement. A bay window for reading. A wraparound porch with porch swings. A whole room made of out chocolate..
7. You mention that finances are tight. What’s your best budget friendly advice?
They’re not as tight as they used to be, but there is lots of room for a better life. Well I’m no expert but the kids are outfitted completely by gifts, consignment sales and hand-me-downs! I used to think my kids would dress in shiny, new clothes but I really can’t think of a worse investment sometimes. They grow! They roll around in mud! They have diaper incidents!
And they look great in everything.
8. I think your spring dresses are adorable. Where do you shop?
Thanks! I used to shop at the mall but it doesn’t seem to work for me anymore. With the dresses, I’ve gotten some of my favorites at a local store in Northampton called Faces. And I usually get three or four new ones every year in three other places: 1. Zulily daily sales. 2. eBay! 3. Cape Cod – there’s a sundress shop in Provincetown.
9. With your children, you use the phrase “don’t ever change”. What do you truly hopes never changes with either of them? What do you hope does?
Scarlet is not rigid or anxious. You could talk up a trip to Disney to her for six months and then if plans changed, she’d roll with it. She’d just shrug and find her happiness elsewhere. She is so resilient and strong. I hope that never changes. And as for what I hope changes, well, she can be so mouthy!
With Des, he is delightfully happy. He is just..so happy. He is ALWAYS giggling and getting excited about EVERYTHING. It’s like a constant party with him. And he looks at everything like it’s magical. I hope that never changes. And as for what I hope changes, I sure hope he is potty trained soon!
10. Like you, I wrote (through AIM, remember that? ) to my husband tons before I saw a picture or heard his voice. When I finally saw my husband, he looked so young! I wasn’t expecting it. Was there anything that you did not expect or surprise you when you finally saw the picture or was it everything you dreamed of?
Ah, that’s a good one! I really didn’t know although my outside sales rep had described him well. I think there was a certain amount of time between the first photo he sent me, which wasn’t surprising OR everything I had dreamed of – it was just…a blank slate: (he’s in front here)
The second picture he sent quickened my pulse: (he’s on the left here)
And one soon after that became my favorite. It’s the wide smile! (he’s in the middle here)
Be sure to check out our Facebook page “AskAwayFriday” for a great place to meet up and send out a #BuddyRequest if you need a partner to swap with or to just talk about anything #AskAwayFriday!
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