I’m trying my hardest to hold in this giant “SQUEE!!!” that’s dying to get out. I have no poker face. I can’t play coy. When I’m excited it’s obvious … from head to toe. I’m just a big old goofy golden retriever puppy wagging my tail … heck, I’m wagging my entire body. So, before I burst, I better just get on with it.
I’ve been given my first ever blogging award!! Woot! Woot!!
I may or may not be making a bigger deal out of this than is typically appropriate, but regardless, I don’t care. I’m super pumped about it. I’ve only been writing this blog for about five months. So, it’s just a really cool gig to be acknowledged like this.
Now, I’m sure it means a lot when the Academy calls up George Clooney, Ben Affleck or Jennifer Lawrence. I’m certain they’re excited about it. But I bet they’d be even more excited if one of their friends called, right??! If Brad Pitt, Matt Damon or J La’s BFF (whoever that is) was the one on the phone saying “hey, looks like you’re pretty awesome and so you should go get some Oscar de la Renta sumthin sumthin for the big night,” I think it would mean even more. It would be very exciting … which is exactly why I was doing a big ol’ jig when I got a message from my girl Rhonda at wine.y.wife that she has awarded me The Versatile Blogger Award!
So, first I want to say “THANK YOU!!” to wine.y.wife. I love this blog. As a lazy foodie who loves wine and beer, I appreciate recipes that don’t need me to spend hours crafting flowers and animals out of food. I want to make yummy stuff that doesn’t require a culinary degree and that I can successfully prepare while drinking wine. Plenty of wine. That’s why I love this blog. And I’m so grateful that Rhonda’s bestowed this first award on me. (I say “first” as if that means there will be more. Ha! A girl can dream!!)
As a Versatile Blogger recipient, I get to share the award with other bloggers that I think are really great. Now, I’m nearly certain all of these blogs have already received this award because they are just so awesome, but I want to shout them out anywho.
Barb Taub — Smart as a whip. Absolutely hilarious. Totally grounded. In short, I <3 Barb. I struggled to read Top Ten Reasons Not to be My Father because I was laughing so much and the tears were clouding my vision. Oh, yah, and she’s a published author. Kinda a big deal.
don of all trades — His name tells you he’s versatile and that he does a little of this and that. And he’s the bombdiggity. He’s laugh out loud funny in some posts and brings a tear in others. He was recently Freshly Pressed (highlighted by the gods of WordPress) for an outstanding post he wrote about life as a police officer. I highly recommend An open letter to the jane q. public i wrote those tickets to …
Frugalista Blog — She’s hilarious, stylish, sassy and smart. She talks about motherhood, marriage, makeup and more. And the vlogs … oh the hysterical vlogs. One of my favorites is her Chicken in a Biskit–a video.
Snarkfest — As a fellow native speaker of Sarcasm, I just totally love her. Want a good example of her awesomeness? Read her Tuesday Tirade, Weiner, Kutcher, Michelle and a movie edition. It’s good stuff.
Wendy Nielsen — A lifestyle blog written by a smart, sweet, grounded woman. She talks openly about her experience with breast cancer. It certainly affects the way she lives her life today, but it doesn’t consume her. She offers support to others and makes me appreciate life in the simplest ways. She also likes the show Parenthood (one of my faves) and wrote Parenthood Addressing the Less Obvious Aspects of Breast Cancer. I love that show. I loved that storyline and the reality of it all. And I love what Wendy shared by taking us into her experience.
When Crazy Meets Exhaustion — As if her side-splitting Oversharing series isn’t enough, she writes about motherhood, marriage and life in a way that makes you laugh every single time. Ever look back on your dating life and wonder “what was I thinking?!” Steph did. And she told us about it in Breakfast Burritos Make Me Sick and I Hate Guys That Wear Abercrombie & Fitch.
The second part of my Thank you to the academy and all that jazz bit includes me sharing seven tidbits about myself. It’s time to get random.
1. I am multi-phobic. For serious. I’m acrophobic (afraid of heights), ornithophobic (afraid of birds–or maybe that’s just an intense loathing with a dollop of fear), and terribly claustrophobic.
Let’s talk about my fear of heights for a minute, k? Fun story. On a trip to Mexico with Hubbinator and twenty-ish high school students, we went on a jungle tour via donkeyback–like horseback, except we were on donkeys … because we were in Mexico … and we had to keep up with the stereotypes, apparently. Our jungle trek included some trails that were about three feet wide (a.k.a. just-barely-wider-than-the-burro’s-ass), straight up a cliff on one side and straight down on the other. Now, it’s worth a mention that there aren’t really any “safety precautions” in Mexico. No guardrails. No fences. Not even a string tied between trees to serve as a barrier. Nothing. Nada. So we carefully rode our donkeys along the Death Cliffs of the beautiful jungle until we arrived at a waterfall. We got our asses off of our asses and were enjoying the scenery. And by “enjoying the scenery” I mean breathing and feeling relief that none of us fell off the cliff and died. Yet. Ahhh, lovely.
We got in the water to swim and cool off. Then the tour guide mentioned that anyone who was interested in seeing some really breathtaking falls could venture up the mountain with him to check it out. There would be some rock climbing-esque parts, he said. Like the beginning part that would have us climbing the homemade rope ladder 20 feet straight up the side of the really tall waterfall that we could see from our little watering hole right there in front of us. Why do we need to scale some giant cliffs to see more??! Isn’t this enough?? Dude! No!!!!!!! (I managed to not shout that out loud even though the voice in my head was freaking out.) Quick thinking … quick thinking … Um, Hey! I volunteer to stay with all our stuff. You know, in case someone is just strolling by the middle of the jungle and sees all these unattended donkeys and things and decides to steal all our clothes and shoes and whatnot. So, I’ll just stay here with everything. To guard it. Because I’m huge and intimidating. Be quiet. Just go.
I would be the Protector of all the Shoes and the Etcetera. It was an important job. And I would have hated for any of my students to miss out on making that
terrifying once-in-a-lifetime journey because they were concerned about leaving their shoes next to a donkey in the middle of a Mexican jungle. (Just go with me on this, m’kay?)
Well, after they all left I started talking to myself about how stupid it was that I was too scared to go. I was their teacher. I was supposed to be the one with them while they experienced Mexico and its amazing waterfalls. I can totally do that ………. That rope ladder isn’t that high … and it doesn’t look like it’s fraying …………… There couldn’t really be that much more climbing, right? …………. I mean, what are the chances I would fall to my death on a trip with students in the middle of the jungle in Mexico? ………. Kidnapped by drug lords while I sit here by myself, maybe, but death by waterfall, probably not. Definitely, probably not. So, after that very rousing personal pep talk, I decided to climb that ladder and catch up to them.
I got about 3/4 of the way up–to the point where the ladder was hugging the rocks in a way that it made you feel like you were falling backwards as you climbed. Because you were. And I froze. I couldn’t move. I was paralyzed by fear. Stuck on a rope ladder in the middle of a Mexican jungle. All by myself. Well, by myself with the donkeys.
After what felt like for-freaking-ever, I finally heard voices from above. God, is that you? That’s weird, God, you sound a lot like a bunch of teenagers, my husband and a Mexican tour guide. Good news: Hubbinator, my students and the tour guide were back. Bad news: they were back … and were going to see me stuck on this rope ladder unable to move.
This is not humiliating. This is NOT humiliating. This is not …. ok, this is totally humiliating.
I explained in vague terms what was going on. Hubbinator tried to be verbally supportive from the top of the rocks / ladder telling me I could do it. It’s not a big deal. Just one rung at a time. Except that my brain didn’t process that logic. My noodle legs and cramping fingers were defying me.
Hubbinator actually had to climb down the ladder, around me and physically coax / move me down. All while reassuring me that I would be fine and not die. We would just climb down together and then everyone else would climb down and then we could get back on our donkeys and traverse the Death Cliffs again. Oh, fantastic. It took a while, but we made it down with Hubbinator literally lifting one of my feet and guiding it to the rung below it, then the other. Sweet Baby Jebus!! I was on solid ground again!! Then all of my students made their way down. By themselves. Without Hubbinator guiding them. (Who knew I was traveling with brave warriors?!)
The rest of the trip was all fine and good and none of my students mentioned the Waterfall Rope Ladder debacle. Because, I’m sure, they were just so thankful that I had been such an effective Guarder of the Shoes and Stuff while I was dangling on the side of a waterfall clinging for life to a worn bit of rope.
2. I am horrible with names. Seriously awful. It’s a terrible plight for a teacher. I remember faces and recognize students for years after they’ve left my classes. A lot of the time I can tell a former student which hour they were in my class, which row and desk they sat in, what extra-curriculars or sports they were active in, whether or not they had a job … but their name? GAHHHH! Making it even more complicated is that I’m a Spanish teacher and my students like to pick Spanish names to use in class … which means I have to learn two sets of names per student. UGGGGHHHHH. Unfortunately, this problem of mine doesn’t apply to only students. If I’m not in regular contact with someone, I’m at a loss. Again, I can remember the minutiae. I could recount multiple stories about each person, just not their name. I’ve been trying to figure out how I can get details like “their son was our mechanic” or “always wore a cowboy hat” in my contacts so I can find people’s information in my address book without their name. It’s a little tricky.
3. Sugar on spaghetti. Always. If you’ve never tried it, you must. You’ll thank me.
4. I like lukewarm food. Actually, I prefer it that way. I can’t even taste my food if it’s too hot. Never mind that I can’t stand burning my tongue or the roof of my mouth. I’d blame it on my kids and the years of letting my dinner sit while I cut up and smashed their food, but I’m pretty sure I’ve been like this my entire life. So, kids, you’re off the hook. For this one thing.
5. I sleep with a 32 year old stuffed potbelly raccoon named Rocky. In thirty-two years and eight months the only damage he’s incurred is a ripped nose. (Damn you, childhood dog!)
6. I have a brown spot in my left eye. So does my Dad. So did my Nana. I was a little disappointed that neither of my kids got it.
7. I’m a morning person who hates to wake up. I will hit snooze as many times as possible because I hate getting out of bed. (One time in college I had set my alarm for 8:30. When it went off, I hit that glorious little snooze button. My roommate left for a 9:00 class. When she got back to the room just after 10:00, I was still in bed … hitting that snooze button every nine minutes.) So, I hate waking up. However, once my feet hit the floor, I’m ready to go with a smile on my face. I typically wake my kids up by singing them dorky songs that I make up. They
tolerate love it.
There are my Seven Random Facts. Now, I’m going to pour a glass of bubbly, grab my bonbons and let this all soak in. While I’m on Cloud 9, you should go check out my friends up there that I nominated. You’ll be glad you did.
Thanks for reading, liking and commenting. It truly makes my day!