Ask Me Anything – The Juicy Answers.

Well, this post is going to be a doozy. Pull up a seat and a bowl of popcorn.

I’m winding down my blogging before my Florida vacation next week, but I’m sure you’ll still hear from me here and there. And I’m not gone yet. In my “Go Ahead, Ask Me Anything” post last week, I unleashed you all to ask me anything in the comments, and you did it. You really did it! I was astounded at the variety and creativity of the questions. Ask Away Friday is usually only ten questions, but I’m just going to start, go in order, and see what happens. If I don’t finish them all, I’ll do so in another post in a few weeks. I’m a little nervous, to be honest. These questions were really good. I’m up for the challenge!

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(The above photo portrays my openness at answering your questions! I hope.)

What is #AskAwayFriday? Well…

#AskAwayFriday was created by the amazing Penny from Real Housewife of Caroline County and Amber from Bold Fit Mom, as a way to connect with other bloggers with a great Q & A session of 10 questions and 10 answers, between two bloggers! This is a wonderful opportunity to get to know others while allowing others to get to know you and of course there is also the added bonus of making great friends along the way which is one of the best parts of this online world! Ask me if you want to swap!

We are sad to be losing Amber as one of our amazing co-hosts, as she is working to pursue other business ventures and focusing her attentions on her fitness ventures. We wish her nothing but the best, and hope for her thriving success!

When one door closes, another one opens…and we would like to give a huge Ask Away Friday welcome to a brand new co-host…drum roll please…Welcome Echo from The Mad Mommy! She is both a friend and a fellow blogger. I dig her.


Now welcoming our wonderful #AskAwayFriday hosts…

Tamara from Tamara Like Camera,
Tiffany from Mrs. Tee Love Life Laughter,
Christy from Uplifting Families,
Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings
Echo from The Mad Mommy

Grab our brand new button, follow our amazing hosts, hop through the great link ups and make some new friends!


And we go! What have I done to myself?

1. Here’s one, do you hate when us southerners complain about our lack of winter? Like do you stick your middle finger up if I post on FB that it was 73 degrees on Sunday? – This question is from Kenya G. Johnson!

This made me laugh! I do understand that we all live where we live for a variety of reasons. I think winter is a piece of crap, but it’s only three months (often more..) and we do love our town. I don’t hate that people complain about not having winter, but I do laugh a bit when people think 73 is cold! I guess we all do get acclimated to our places, though. To some, 73 is cold! I don’t like heat or humidity at all so I never feel jealous of people who live in Florida. I just come visit. What I’m truly jealous of is people who live in San Diego. It is perfect there year-round. No snow AND no terrible heat and humidity.

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(This is the only photo I took in San Diego. Clearly, I have to go back.)

2. What if you had never met Cassidy? What do you think your life would look like today if somehow the universe hadn’t aligned the way it did and the two of you had never crossed paths? – this heavy hitter is from Lisa of The Golden Spoons.

Whaaa?? How did you get into my brain?? It’s impossible to know but possible to speculate. When Cassidy came back into my life, I was in a serious relationship. I had a steady paycheck that gave me well more than I needed. I had an incredible group of friends, close relatives and a nice home. Why would I leave all that??? Well, it was hard. I do think it had to happen. I can remember wanting to leave New Jersey when I was only seven. That’s powerful. I was built to answer the call somewhere. It may have taken a winding road to get here, and still twisting and turning, but I can’t help but hope that somehow I would be doing something like this – mothering, writing, photographing. As for the relationship I was in with someone else, I don’t know if it would have lasted either. I don’t know if I could have fallen in love with a third person, down the line. I think so.

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(The elk photo is used to illustrate my western-loving heart and how I wish to answer to the call of the wild!)

3. What is one piece of advice you can offer novice photographers that will immediately alter the quality of their snapshots? – from Rudri of Being Rudri

Immediately? Do they have a DSLR? My biggest piece of advice is to learn to shoot manually (doesn’t have to mean manual focus). Once you get control of your exposure and focus, your images will change dramatically. It’s like night and day.

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4. If I could ask you anything…what’s your favorite photography app to use when you’re taking photos with your phone? – from Jessica of Pig & Dac

I honestly just use Instagram! I know there are many fancy ones but I have to learn to master iPhoneography before I get too fancy, because I do believe you can get photos with good exposure and focus with your phone alone. I’m a work-in-progress!

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5. I’ve read and heard many cool facts over the years about San Francisco, you know all the wonderful things Tony Bennett sings about. What were your favorite things about this uniquely charming city by the bay? – this question comes from dear friend, Eddie Staudt.

I suppose I have to answer about the city, huh? My favorite things about San Francisco were the amazing cliffs, beaches and warmth surrounding the city! So I’ll go into the city and explore a bit. It was about the fresh food, the exotic seascapes and hills, the fact that the city never really got below 50 or above 80, the many dreams and visions I had about the city, the rich history that is tied to classic rock, the rich history that is tied to my mom and grandmother’s love for California, and everything I’ll always hope and believe about finding my way back there, even if just for part of the year. I’ll always dream.

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6. My question would be if you ever decided to cut your hair what celebrity would you most look like? I have a second question because you know, you are my photography idol. So which lens would you purchase after the standard 18/55?? – this two-parter is from Nellie at Brooklyn Active Mama

Well, Nellie, I’m answering both! You know I would never cut my hair! So I’m going to answer – Sofia Vergara! And I suppose in that case I’d have to grow my hair too, but I’m sure there would be a cut thrown in there for layering and body.

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As for lens, I started with an 18-55 but it bummed me out. My first portrait lens was a 50mm 1.4. I really recommend it for portraits because it’s not too expensive and if you learn how to use it, it’s ridiculously creamy and dreamy.

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****Tiny intermission – Yes, Ana Lyn – I did miss you!****

7. How long does it take you to assemble a post, including loading the photos? – this one is from Seana of The Seana Method

I do love this question. It does vary, but each post takes a long time. My just-writing ones, which are rare, usually take five minutes to spit out and then maybe I’ll give it a full hour when you factor in editing and scheduling. My Ask Away Friday posts take about an hour or two, because I generally don’t edit new photos for them, but I do work with code and key words and co-hosts, and I do search for photos to use. My photo-essay posts take a long time because of the photo editing. I am a very quick writer. I once wrote a 12 page paper on Walt Disney the morning it was due and got an A+. In college. I’m not quick with editing photos. Sometimes I’ll batch-process but mostly I sort of daydream through them. So those long posts can take 3-4 hours, which seems obscene but you have to remember that I need to upload those photos anyway, because I took them.

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8. What makes you the happiest? – This question comes from Live By Surprise

It’s the ability to get high on life, in that real and dizzying sense. It’s that inner drive that keeps me awake and alert and ambitious most of the days. It’s healthy kids and time with family and friends and love. It’s all of the earth gifts we get, like love and sex and chocolate mixed with peanut butter and farms and summer nights and spring breezes and beach sunsets.

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9. So I will ask this, have you and your husband always had the geeky loves (ex. Dr. Who, Han Solo) or did one of you have it more and ‘influence’ the other? – from Angela of Working On/Working Mom

The Force is strong in both of us, Angela. I know we nerded out to many things throughout our childhoods – movies, music, TV shows. I have always loved Star Wars and X-Files and a gazillion other things. Cassidy grew up on “Doctor Who”, though. In that case, he influenced me, but hey – I didn’t have to love it. And I do! I’m all for toys and props in the house.

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10. What is the proudest thing you’ve done the last 7 days of 2015? – this comes from Nina of Sleeping Should Be Easy (brilliant name, right?)

Well I submitted four writing type things into the world! One was published TODAY, one was accepted into a book, and two others are to be determined.

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11. Now, for my question, which is really strange but something I’ve always wondered. In my head, I pronounce your name Tam-a-ra (because, you know, it sounds like camera). But I also know someone who pronounces the same name like Ta-mara. Which way do you pronounce your name? – this is from Kristen of 31 Million Seconds

Well, I’m glad you asked! You had it correctly – Tam-a-ra. It rhymes with camera, BUT, it’s not spelled that way. Three A’s. I get Tamera a lot and it turns my stomach even more than hearing my name as Ta-mara!

12. Here’s a question for you: what is one experience you are looking forward to in the next week? – from Kerri at Diagnosed and Still Okay, which used to be called Undiagnosed but Okay

Kerri, next week I am getting on a plane with my family, heading to a beach house in St. Augustine for a few days, and then heading to Orlando. There are one million things I’m excited about right now and all are in Florida!

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13. If Vladimir Putin said you could only post photos but not write, or write but not post photos, for one year, which would you choose, and why? – from Eli at Coach Daddy

Vladimir Putin, eh? Are you certain I would follow what he says?? Do I really have to answer this? Crap. I’d have to say that I would write, but not post photos. Sob. Just for that, I’m going to post a photo right now, PUTIN. I mean. ELI!

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(PRIDE and time machines and babies. How do you like them apples?)

14. Ok, if you won $100,000, what would you spend it on? – This is from Raquel of Organized Island

Well. Where on earth to begin? Kids’ college funds, house repairs, a new master bathroom, an updated basement, an outdoor hot tub, two new cars, a new camera body, two new lenses, and if I had anything left, I’d buy a trip to Alaska for my family.

And a latte.

15. What’s your favourite Jelly Bean flavour and I’m not talking sucky jelly beans…I’m talking Jelly Belly Jelly Beans…the gourmet beans. – this is from dear Kim of All Work And No Play Makes Mommy Go Something Something

Well, Kim. It would have to be cherry or strawberry. Or as they call it, “the red flavor”, because red is a flavor in America.

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16. Here goes! Right this minute, first answer that pops in your head (no cheating) where would you like to be and with whom? It can be a time, pretend or real, or an actual place. – this is from Jen at Jenerally Informed

Umm… the butler! In the ballroom with a revolver! Tim Curry? In actuality, I would love to be in the warm sand with a book. It would be nice to be with Cassidy and for both kids to be magically napping. Or maybe in New England in the spring.

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17. What is your favorite way to get out of a slump? – from Kate at Another Clean Slate

Well my slumps are generally anxiety-based so sometimes the things other people do to get out of a slump – chocolate, long walks, call a friend, etc. won’t necessarily work for me because I’m anxious and afraid. Generally it’s feeling ambitious – it’s that inner drive to create. Writing and photography help. The kids do, but sometimes not. Music is generally always welcome.

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18. I have a health related question for you. You’ve mentioned that good vitamins are one of the things that help you with your anxiety. I just started taking good vitamins last year and I love the Garden of Life brand. I noticed a difference within a week of taking the good stuff (cleared up my issue with dry and peeling skin). What supplements do you take and do have a favorite brand? – from Sonya of Saving Everyday With Sonya K.

Well you’re right in that there’s a huge difference in taking the good stuff. I take Rainbow Light brand vitamins and I think it’s Pioneer B-vitamins. I also take Sundown vitamin D drops every day. They say New Englanders are mostly always deficient.

19. If you could chose to have one car for the rest of your life, what would it be?…and where (in the world) would it be parked?…and what or who would be in it? – this is from Allie of VitaTrain4Life

I’d just like a Honda Civic. Or one of those amazing Subarus. (can you tell I live in Northampton?) It would be parked at home with Tim Curry in it. In the ballroom with a revolver. Wait, what? It would have my family in it and we’d be seeing moose.

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20. Ask ya anything huh? You’ve already answered sooo many great questions….if you wrote a book, what would it be about? – this is from Lisa of Expandng.

Well it would be creative non-fiction and it would be a photography & parenting book about living through anxiety.

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****20 already?? We need an intermission. Go use the restroom or purchase a package of M&Ms at the candy counter.****

****I’ll wait.****

****Anyone know any good jokes?****

****Ok, the lights are dimming.. Find your seats!****

21. Least favorite household chore? – this is from Gingi at Domestic Geek Girl

All of them? I think the trash is up there but at least it’s quick. So maybe I’ll say kid laundry is my least favorite.

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22. Here’s a light question for you – what do you plan on doing when you get to Florida later this month? So much sunlight and warm weather waiting for you and your family… – this comes from Gracielle at Mommy A-Z

It’s actually quite cooler where we’re starting our trip – St. Augustine. Even 65 will be great, though. I plan to sit on the beach a lot, even if I need a jacket. We will spend some great time with my in-laws and RELAX. It will get crazy during the second half of our trip – Orlando. We plan to go a little theme park crazy just like last year!

Ask Me Anything

23. Who is your celebrity crush? – this is from Amber at Airing My Dirty Laundry

Well, I’m not really a celebrity crush type. I don’t have time for that! My biggest TV crush as an adult was Desmond from the show LOST. And Hook from “Once Upon a Time” is really up there. He’s grab-and-kiss worthy, don’t you think?

24. You are very open and honest – but what is the one blog post you’ve written, but never published because it is too personal? – this is from Kristen at Mommy In Sports

This is tough because I at least touch upon things when I can’t get into them. I think there’s family stuff that’s personal. Every family struggles but sometimes it’s not about me. It’s about my parents or my siblings. Once my brother got mad at me because I wrote about how much I hate Jersey. Well, I was in a bad mood, and I have never regretted leaving.. but.. sometimes I need to be more sensitive. I don’t talk much about marriage, strange crushes or broken-hearted things I’ve done.

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25. My question for you is do you have a morning ritual? – this is from Christine at Love Life Surf

It’s funny because I just wrote about taking back mornings! Usually I sleep until I’ve already overslept. I always have to shower before heading out because otherwise..ZZZZ.. so it’s about getting to the kids and pets that Cassidy didn’t feed or clothe and then taking both kids to school. Then I come back home. And I have a quiet breakfast with a good book.

26. If you could study with any photographer, who would it be? – from Ashley at Happy.Pretty.Sweet

I think it would be Brandon Stanton of Humans of New York. I think he’s got guts. I would love to see his approach in New York City – and how a day of photography comes together for him.

27. How did you and your Hubby meet and how long were you together before he proposed? – from Lisa Thomson

That’s a 20 part story! We had gotten together twice, but I’ll just count the second time. We got engaged after about nine months of solid dating.

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28. Who is the disciplinarian in your home? – From Kim at Day With KT

You see, people think it’s Cassidy and I can understand that. I’m a bit of a lone wolf sometimes. Picture this – there is someone you work with and you share the same position and the same skill-set. However. Your co-worker is much more assertive than you are and you hate confrontation and tend to shrink back. You don’t have confidence. It’s like that. I’m afraid to get in between a Scarlet/Cassidy thing because I’m honestly afraid one or both of them will hurt my feelings. Now also consider that Cassidy is out of the house over 60 hours a week. That’s a lot of parenting for me. And I do feel that I discipline the kids and generally, things work out well. They are empathetic and dreamy kids. I’m happy about that.

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29. What were the best and worst moments of your day today? – from Leslie at Pampers, Play Dates and Parties

Worst – the morning rush and being late to daycare dropoff. And having gloves that don’t know how to glove..
Best – a lunch date with Cassidy today at Holyoke Hummus Company. No kids, good company, incredible food.

30. What’s your favorite thing to do at Disney World? – from Lana at Two Teens and Their Mama

I’ve only gone once as a parent, so my favorite thing was the look of glee on Scarlet’s face! Always, it’s the Peter Pan Ride!!

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31. Which country would you like to visit in future? Which place in your country you visited and you would recommend for tourists? – from Fashion and Food Blog

I would love to visit England first. As for this country for tourists? Definitely northern California as a whole. Gloriousness.

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32. What Disney movie would you love to be a character in?– from my girl, Mrs_AOK

I’d most like to BE Elsa, because I relate to her very much. I’d most like to be IN Peter Pan, because, flying!

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33. Have you ever been deeply betrayed? – from Katbiggie

You can read the 20 part love story for some of that! I had a close friend in high school who dated someone I was “in love with.” That wasn’t really what got me, though. It was that I felt like we were drifting apart and I told her so and she said, “Drifting is good.” Well, ok then.

34. If you could live a week inside any fantasy world – Dr. Who, Star Wars, Marvel – which would you choose; and of course, why? – from the wonderful Rorybore!

Confession? I don’t really like outer space. At all. I can’t go on those rides at EPCOT. At all. Marvel can be a bit intimidating. I’m choosing Doctor Who because for all of the deep questions and disturbing stories and weird special effects, ultimately, I just want to race around the universe for a week. Maybe do some damage. Maybe save some lives. You know how it is.

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Whew! Thanks for sticking around. You all rock.

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  1. I thought I knew so much about you already, but totally learned quite a bit more tonight and of course loved what I did learn. And I realized I never did ask you a question, because our comment thread as usual took on a life of its own 😉

  2. Absolutely wonderful! Music is a big thing for me, as a matter of fact I am listening to Lindsay right now online, and loving the jams! Hook is kind of bad boy dreamy! LOL! The looks that you capture on Scarlet and Des’ faces are just amazing and you can totally see the glow in their adorable little faces! Have a safe and wonderful trip my friend and enjoy a bit of sunshine for me as I sit in the frigid midwest!

  3. Oh my goodness, Tamara! This was an epic read and I loved every second of it. Well, not every second because there was a moment where I remembered that I forgot to ask you a question! I loved reading all of these fantastic questions though! It was a hoot learning even more about you!

  4. I settled in and read all 34 chapters of this week’s novel edition of “Ask Away Friday.” Most of the chapters I read twice and three times. I really like how you add your own delightful humor to your answers. Your pictures and photos bring smiles from ear to ear! Congrats Tamara on your published and accepted writing type things, and my fingers are crossed for your two writing type things to be determined. I hope they turn out just the way you want them to.

  5. Fabulous post, Tamara!! I have some reading to do to get my question fully answered (ahem) 20 part story? Very interesting. My partner and I are also a second time around relationship. Back for good(s). Lovely connection with all of your photos and your answers. Have a wonderful and restful holiday with your family!

    1. I’m sorry I couldn’t answer it fully! I thought about doing a 25 cent version, but I didn’t think it would do it justice.
      Sometimes second time around love is just about perfect.

    1. I was wondering about that! Since we are not staying on Disney property. Last year I do think we were able to use fastpass but it’s not a very busy time of year so we didn’t really need it.

  6. Whew! Lots of great questions.
    I can identify with your feelings about New Jersey. I don’t remember how old I was when I knew I wasn’t going to stay, probably not as young as you. I do get defensive, though, about our home state when people criticize it. I think too many people judge it by what the see on the Turnpike outside of the city (side note: I will forever refer to NYC as “The City,” no matter how long live outside of Boston!) when really it is a gorgeous state with lots of cute little towns. But at heart, I think I am really a New Englander, ridiculously long winter and all!
    And yay for tips on photographing toddlers as Eve is on the cusp of (or currently is already there? I don’t understand how these things work) toddlerhood. (Actually, just yesterday, she took a 1-2 steps several times throughout the day!)
    Anyway, I had other thoughts to some of the other questions your asked and your responses, but it’s 5:40 am and I’m still waking up, so I’ll leave it here! But I love how you open yourself up to your readers.

    1. It is funny about NJ’s reputation. I grew up in a very rural part of it, and now my parents are on a farm! There are so many beautiful parts of New Jersey. For me, it was just the suffocating feeling of always being in a crowd. And on a weekend, you couldn’t just go to the store without sitting in traffic. I never get that out here!
      And I agree about “the city.”
      Photographing toddlers can be hard because they’re always on the go, as you know!

  7. This.was.awesome! Thank you for indulging all of us and for all the amazing photos. You just never cease to amaze! I love the one of Cassidy carrying you piggy-back style. It looks like something from the 70s. And I’ve never heard of the Holyoke Hummus Co! Must eat there ASAP!!

    1. The hummus company is more of a food cart thing. They have a pop-up restaurant on Thursdays, and they also hit the farmers markets. I imagine in the spring and summer they will be more prevalent. You’ll have to come up!!

  8. Well thank you for your thoughtful answer to my question. I figured with all those photos that the uploading and all would take time. Now I love you even more for sharing hours with us:) And I don’t think I’d do what Putin says… just sayin’. Very fun post!!

    1. Thank you again for that question! It really made me think about it. At first I got bummed that the photo posts take so long, but then I realized that photo editing would have to happen anyway. So it’s time that I would have spent even if I didn’t blog.

  9. Oh my goodness, you sure are right, this one really was a doozy and I loved it! I love that you took questions from everyone and they were all fantastic. You should do another because I missed out on asking a question and I can’t wait to see your vacation pics when you get back.

    1. I honestly wanted to drive, because I hate the pressure of flying and because I wish we could take our dog. However, it might be a fun adventure for the kids.

  10. Hmm got murder on the brain…. Nah j/k 🙂 Did you know that Clue is on Netflix now? I have already watched it at least a dozen times. I love that movie! Yay for one week until your Florida vacation. So fun!

  11. Amazing!! Learned more about you. And as always, I loved reading anything around here!
    Whenever I hear someone mispronouncing my name, I never knew how to react but it’s awkward because well it’s just 3 letters. LOL. Also, a lot of people think that dads are always the disciplinarians. Pretty sure you’re doing a great job with your kids. In my case, my husband is, I guess.. because I’m the one working and I actually think Reiko’s gonna be a spoiled brat if it’s just me. Ughhh, not good!

    1. Sometimes I feel like I spoil Scarlet too much. I just can’t resist giving her more candy or toys. If I made it more sporadic and special, I think it would benefit all of us! I can’t seem to do it.

  12. Oh gosh. Your “I will never cut my hair” response triggered my recollection of last night’s dream, in which I cut all my hair off into this ugly, shaggy, short version of a mullet…it was choppy and such a bad look. I kept grabbing the back and it felt so thin. I AM NEVER CUTTING MY HAIR EITHER! Well…at least not like that.

    I cant wait for you to make your way to the west coast! It’s going to happen soon, I know it. I can feel it in me!

    I’m not the celebrity crush type either. Though there are exceptions depending on my mood. Like James Franco- I just love him. And sometimes celebrities will make appearances in my dreams and I wake up loving them, even though I never loved them before.

    I WOULD LOVE to see you photograph NYC! I feel like you’d be incredible, I bet you could make the busy city feel still through your photos.

    “I’m honestly afraid one or both of them will hurt my feelings.” That line made me want to hug you because I understand the sentiment. You are much better at verbalizing your true feelings. It inspires me. Even though I feel the same way about being afraid of being hurt, conveying such would never happen as naturally or as willingly as you are able to do. I internalize instead, but I want to reach your level of courage.

    I love your anti-outer spaceness. AGREED!

    This post was fun. You are an absolute joy to know and love.

    1. James Franco is pretty cool. I can see that one!

      And I would absolutely have mullet nightmares. I have dreams that my hair is falling out or my teeth. I’m quite attached to both and they’re both the originals.

      I appreciate what you said about that one answer. That one was hard to write out, but I know Cassidy reads my blog and I know he read it today and I know that he was still pretty happy to see me today. So maybe he appreciated my honesty! He has a strong personality and so does Scarlet. I do too, but on weirder terms.

      You’re a joy too! We are totally blogging friends extraordinaire!

    1. A DSLR is a digital single lens reflex camera. It basically just means that it has interchangeable lenses and you can control the settings. You get some of those benefits in point and shoots and phone cameras these days, but there’s nothing like a DSLR.

  13. So many great questions! I could leave you a comment about each answer you gave, but neither one of us has time for that! 😉 No popcorn, but I’m enjoying a nice, hot cup of tea while reading at my kitchen table!

    1. What’s interesting to me is that when we go to Florida, we are staying in two different places. Those two places have quite a significant temperature difference. I think I will enjoy the warmth, but that’s only half of our trip!

  14. What an awesome post! I read this last night at about 11:00, but I was on my iPad and too lazy to peck out a comment. So know I can’t remember what I was going to say. So I’ll just say have a fabulous time in sunny Florida. Send some warm vibes up north!

  15. You win blogging Ask Away Friday! Game over, pack your bags, T-A-M-A-R-A won the marathon! 🙂
    This was AWESOME. I totally was going to ask Lisa’s question in regard to your book.
    Lovely seeing my question answered, thank you much! I appreciate your openness, I worry a bit about sharing too much… but I’m trying to not let FEAR rule me this year. I may open up a smidge more.
    Kudos to you getting work published!!!

    1. This post was a little ridiculous. I could have split it into two, but I really wanted to do it. I am such an overachiever with blogging, and sadly, not with everything else.
      I love that you saw questions you liked in there!

        1. Or it’s my long goodbye because I’m going away for a week and I won’t be writing new things. Although I just prescheduled six posts, and that was an incredible amount of writing even after this long post.

  16. I think this is an awesome post – with an intermission even! All these questions are so interesting and numbers 2 and 33 are certainly probing. Your photos are great (as always) and you are absolutely beaming in the one of you and Scarlet in the fields. Thank you for answering my question! I really hope you do have a prosperous year this year and can get many of those things, or at least your latte. Oh yeah, and Desmond from LOST was pretty hot!

    1. Yes, he was such a hottie! I love to tell people my son is named after Desmond Tutu, but kind of not.
      In that photo in the fields, it was my anniversary and Cassidy took us to the place we got married and we spent a night in our old room. It was really fun with Scarlet! And we went swimming.

  17. This was a fun one! I think my favorite parts were the intermission and the photo of Des at the table with his hands in the air. It’s funny, but while winter can be brutal here in Maine, I’ve learned to embrace it over the years. And, hello, summers in Maine. Also, moose.

    1. Did you purchase a package of M&Ms at my candy counter?
      I’m reading a book now that takes place partly in coastal Maine. It’s driving me crazy with wanting to be there in the warmth. This is the year!

  18. Love this! Everyone came up with some really great questions. I hope you have an absolutely wonderful time in Florida and I really hope the weather cooperates for you!

    1. At this point, if it’s above 30° it will be cooperating. We don’t ask for much! And we will be there for eight days so I’m sure at least one day will be warm and sunny! Right?

  19. I absolutely love this. It feels like I’m getting to know you more in just one post! Awesome. Also, what camera do you use? I could probably search around 😀 I love your photos, they are so crisp and just pulls you in. Gorgeous. PS: I love your hair too! Have a great time down in FL with your beautiful family.

  20. best.askaway.friday.EVER! and not because you answered BOTH of my questions! 😉 Sophia Vergara–perfect, her hair is just so magical ALL the time! Would you do the brown highlights as well?

    Thank you for the lens recommendation! I have been so stumped with which lens to get next. Photography is so complicated, yet you make it look so easy!

    1. I love your questions! I guess I would do the highlights. I know I will eventually color my hair when it goes grey and I will probably go a little lighter. If I try to go to the same or darker, it might not be flattering for my face.
      The 50 mm lens is a great one. I think you’ll love the nifty 50!

  21. What a super fun post – loved this!!
    Chris actually started reading this to me to take my mind off of the blue light treatment I had on my face and neck today – perfect way to pass the 16:40 of torture!!!

      1. Manual is a setting on your camera. If you have a camera with a dial that has little letters and symbols on it, the M is the one you want. With that, you can control the aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and flash. Here are also semi-automatic options in which you can control some of it, and the camera determines the rest. The problem with the camera determining the settings, is that it doesn’t always expose correctly. Or rarely. And it’s pretty bad with white balance too!

        1. Awesome! I don’t have a DSLR.. yet! I intend to invest in one at some point in the next 2 years so once I get my paws on one I will play with the ‘M’ setting. 🙂 I guess people like to get all fancy shmancy with the settings and don’t understand how it really affects the photo. Nice tip lovely!

      1. Lol I’m on there – I just don’t care to log on but I respond if people need something. I just searched for your name/blog name and ‘Camera Tamera Photography’ popped up- how hilarious! lol Based out of Tulsa, OK

  22. Well good LORD!!! I started to read this last night, and realized I needed to read the rest of it later today- then it flew by and here I am to finish it off! SO much good stuff here… SO many awesome questions and answers!!! I remember the all out for questions and thinking how I needed to come up with a doozy- then POOF! Who the hell knows what happened.


    This must have taken you so much time to do- adding everyone’s names and links etc. I just love learning more and more about you. <3

    I hope you have a BEAUTIFUL time on your trip, hun!!! XOXO

    1. Well I didn’t actually add the links! I figured that would be too much work. As it was, this was a lot of work! Thank you for reading it all!

  23. Wow! This was an awesome AAF. Thanks for answering my question. I’m always interested in what supplements work for others. My two year old likes to be called Elsa. I’ll say her name and she’ll say, “No, my name is Elsa.”

  24. There’s so much greatness here I don’t even know where to begin. I love learning more about you, and your readers asked some awesome questions! Have so much fun on your Florida trip next week!

  25. Congrats on having a piece accepted into a book! That’s so exciting! Humans of New York is fascinating. It would be really cool to see how his day comes together 🙂

  26. That was amazing! I think your post this week could qualify as your first novel. Thank goodness the others posted photography questions. I love the portrait lens too…and am working on the whole manual thing. Those are wonderful things to be happy about – and I wish you more and more of them. And thank goodness for Cassidy’s Doctor Who addiction. Imagine how bereft you’d be if you’d never met him… ☺️

  27. How cool that my question is listed first out of all of them. 😉 I read this earlier from my ipad and can’t remember all my along the way comments. Oh yeah one was about photography. I used to be into taking pictures for art. This was before digital and I had learned what kind of film to use depending on what I was going to be taking pictures of. But I did always feel like I was cheating if I wasn’t shooting in manual mode and I never fully learned it. Even on my first digital camera’s I never bothered to use all the stuff that made the photos more artsy. Now I ONLY use my phone. Also one more question for you. I rarely have more than two photos in a post and when I one of two I feel like that is what takes me forever to get it posted. Do you write you complete post first and add pictures later or add as you go?

    1. I love that your question was first. You were fast that day!
      And your question is a good one. Generally, it’s sort of just works. I’m often very late with my photos, so I find that even if I am uploading photos from August, I can find that they fit the theme of what I want to write about.
      If I’m doing one of my long photo posts, that I know is based on photos I’ve taken, I will upload the photos first. Then I let the words come and match them. It actually works so many different ways. Usually I just pull it all out of thin air. Sometimes it’s planned. Sometimes it is not. And sometimes it is half planned and takes on a new direction.

  28. How did I miss this Ask Me Anything thread? Oh my…you are quite open with your responses, as you always are. I may be headed to Titusville at the end of the month. I can cut over to Orlando. I was actually supposed to be Orlando when you’ll be here, but I had to cancel the trip because money didn’t come through. 🙁 I hope you have a blast down here!

  29. Oh my, I only got to your answer of #4 and then I had to start typing this comment. I absolutely would have answered #1 the same way, and like to think that #2 is possible and you are spot on with #3. But #4, you are shooting with the instagram camera?! Well, they improved the resolution, but contrary to #3 you don’t have control over exposure. Maybe read my latest post, with a couple (= non complete list) of recommendations for camera apps for your iPhone. o.k. now on to more questions and answers 😉
    Breezed through a few and have to say you and Cassidy make a wonderful couple. And Des with his reflection on the table – LOL – too cute, then #8 – wonderful answer. And the one to #9 could be David and I.
    I still love that picture of you under #17, so dreamy, so – you
    #21 – totally there with you, hate household chores, laundry, trash, cleaning, dishes – all of it. Never liked it, never will. #26 Humans of New York – wow, he does such a great job, doesn’t he? But really street photography (with a human touch) is just something. Big yay for #29 lunch dates!
    Phew – this was another fun ride, Tamara! If I could only come up with questions…

    1. Wow! You deserve a medal for this comment!
      I was wrong about the iPhone one. I don’t shoot with Instagram. I shoot just with the phone camera. And I will edit it with the camera itself. Then I put it into Instagram for sharing, but I rarely like their filters. So I answered it wrong. And I did read your post today! Loved it.

  30. So many questions and good ones too! Love learning more about you through this. I too am supremely jealous of those that live in San Diego. I keep telling Ed that we should move there. Seems perfect, right? And how amazing would it be to study with Brandon Stanton? I can’t imagine all the experiences that he’s had. Have an amazing trip to Florida! Bring some sunshine back to the Northeast please!

    1. I will! Although today is 37 and sunny and it feels like spring. Which is funny.
      I’ve only ever been to San Diego in December, and if that’s any indication of what it is like, I’m sold.

  31. That was so much fun!! You should do that more often — we all should do this more often. I mean, it must have a been a huge time suck (good thing you got a Tardis!), but this is the great thing about Blogging: getting to know all the wonderful and creative people in our community. I have never read your 20 part love story!! how did such a sap as myself miss that?! Well, I will be in a hotel this weekend with kids and I instead of bringing a book this trip, I’ll be catching up on the story of you.

  32. So, you’re going to do this every month, right? I feel like we took it easy on you. No one asked what goes in your dream sandwich, or how you could possibly like the yankees.

  33. i wish i could learn to take better pictures, but it’s so easy to just shoot automatically! you have such talent that i admire. also, i love my honda civic!!!!

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