Tagged, oh my!

The lovely Kyong at Cheeky Tart's Dumb Blog (I didn't name it!) tagged me. So I'm it.

1- What’s your staple meal (i.e. what meal do you cook most often when you can’t be bothered to be adventurous)?


2- What do you want to be when you grow up?

A famous fiberista. A photographer would be nice too.

3- What book are you reading at the moment (if any)

I'm really not. I should be. I read The Historian recently. At first I was like what the heck is this? But then I dug it and I'm sorry it's over.

4- How do you relax?

You want the truth? I rarely get to do this, but my favorite way to relax is to lay down and focus on pretty much nothing for as long as I like. Sometimes there's coffee involved. I'm pretty sure that this is what I spent my 20s doing. I didn't get much else accomplished though.

5- What color are the interior walls of your home?

A medium, boring brown in the living/dining/hall area. Olive green in the kitchen. The bedroom is supposed to be gray but it's not yet (will look better than it sounds. it'd better, anyway). V's room is purple. The downstairs is celery green. The fiber room is pink. Out of all those, V's room is the only one we've painted. We've got a lot of work to do, huh?

6- What is your guiltiest pleasure?

Ice cream. Zoning out to crime dramas (The Mentalist is my favorite at the moment).

7- What time is bedtime and getting up time?

Bedtime is usually sometime between midnight and 1am. I get up around 6:45am. Why yes, I am chronically tired - why do you ask?

8- How long do you spend reading blogs (per day or per week)?

Not very long anymore. I used to spend a good hour or so reading them every day (maybe more), but I don't have that much time right now. So, maybe an hour a week on a good week. But I love blogs. I think it's awesome that I don't have to listen to "the experts." I can listen to whoever I want.

Are you reading this? Yes? Then tag - you're it!

And seven from me

I know I've been tagged for this one before, though I've forgotten by whom. But yesterday I was tagged by my friend Diana and I'd rather play along than work, so here goes.

Seven things about me:

1. I am biomechanically incorrect. I had surgery on my feet when I was five. They (broke and) reset the bones in my feet. That helped, but it didn't fix the problem completely because I am too flexible for my own good. Some people might think that it's good to be super flexible, but I can assure you that it's not as good as it looks in the brochure. I once had a doctor tell me that I am "biomechanically incorrect." Awesome! Thanks, dude! My wonderful husband calls them "show feet" - they're good for show only, not for actual work. I like that, for some reason. Makes me sound delicate and feminine. Or something.

2. My mother wouldn't let me pierce my ears until I was 18. It was a religious thing (on her part). This irked me no end. I wanted to wear giant silver hoop earrings - it was very important. Two weeks before my 18th birthday, I went and got them pierced. I thought she was going to be so mad! She laughed and said she was surprised I hadn't done it before. If I'd known that, I would have.

3. My favorite line from a movie comes from River's Edge. Ok, this is crass, which I don't normally do here. So if you're offended by foul language, please skip to #4, which is much more pleasant.

In the movie, Keanu Reeves is being hassled by his stepfather. Keanu tells him, "You just stay around here to f*** my mother and eat her food." Then, as the argument progresses, he yells, "Motherf*****! FOOD EATER!"

Ever since I saw that movie, the worst insult I can think of to lay on someone is that they are a food eater.

4. I really, really, really want a pretty teacup collection. But every time I see a teacup I like, I don't buy it. Just did that the other day Instead,I got some great things for V: a cradle for her baby dolls, an old suitcase, and a funny hat that I can't wait to take pictures of.

5. My nickname has always been Maya Papaya. People often say to me, "Hiya Maya!" as if I have never heard that before, but I almost always laugh at it anyway. I used to work with a guy who called me Maya Jane, which isn't my middle name, but I actually quite liked. I have also been told that I live in my "own little Maya world," but I don't think that was a compliment.

6. On my desktop, I have a folder called Salinger. In it are all the stories written by JD Salinger that were published in magazines but not in books that I could find on the internet. I haven't read them all yet, but I will. I'm savoring them. There are very few books that I care to read more than once, but occasionally I have to reread everything I can about the Glass family.

7. I used to be funny. Before I had a kid, I was one of the funniest girls you were every likely to meet. Unfortunately, being funny can come at a price (see the last sentence of #5). When I had V, I lost a lot of my funny (you had to be there). It tends to come out, though, when I talk to certain friends on the phone, so I know it's still in there somewhere. I hope it's waiting patiently for me to catch up. But I think a lot of being funny (for me, anyway) has to do with being mean and I don't like to be mean. Not too often, anyway.

You're always supposed to tag people when you do a meme, so I hearby TAG YOU ALL. So na-na.

Oh noes!

Oh no, I've been tagged by Alexis at Knot Sew Crafty!

The thing is, I have been tagged two other times by two other people and have not followed through on the tags. I feel really bad about that! So I'm going to go ahead and do this one and hope that it makes up for not doing the other two. Except I'm not sure how interesting this will be, but I'll try.

Out of all the unimportant things about me, I'm supposed to pick six to tell you about.


  1. I went to a boarding school for high school. Except my junior year, when I did home study. Because I hated high school and I especially hated boarding school.
  2. I'm left-handed and really wish V were too, but I think she's going to be right-handed.
  3. I prefer serial commas.
  4. I am constantly thinking about what to name the next child.
  5. I am constantly lusting after photography equipment, computers, computer software, and workshops or classes that either I can't afford or don't have time to take.
  6. When I was a kid, my father used to take me to the zoo. This was in DC. When we'd get off the bus, I'd write "hi" in the sand beneath a tree on the sidewalk. When we'd get back to the bus stop, I was always disappointed that no one ever wrote anything back.

See? Not all that interesting. If I can find the other times I've been tagged, I'll do them. So if you tagged me before - let me know! I know Sheri was one...

Oh yeah, I hate to tag people - so if you're reading this, consider yourself tagged if you'd like to play along and then leave me the link in the comments.

Obvious tips, I know

A while back, I posted some writing tips because my friend Shelli tagged me. I'm finally getting around to coming up with my three photography tips that I said I'd share.

It's not difficult to find an overwhelming amount of photography tips out there, so rather than focus on the technical stuff that I don't know nearly enough about, I thought I'd try to come up with more practical advice for taking pictures of kids.

  1. Give them something to hold, especially when they're younger. Whenever I take my daughter out for a walk at the park and think I'm going to get lovely pictures, I get about five photos of her looking cute and about 257 of her looking at the ground, where all the fun stuff is! Taking a ball or cute toy or picking something interesting up off the ground for her to hold at least gives me a chance that I'll get a shot of her face.
  2. Don't let your significant other wear a hat or sunglasses if you plan to take pictures of him with your kid. I know it's a pain in the butt for him, but marks on R's forehead and face from his cap and sunglasses ruin my pictures! Or worse yet, he'll want to leave them on because now that the marks are there, it doesn't matter anyway. And then he's all bright orange because we live in Tennessee.
  3. Wipe her face off! I cannot tell you how many photos I've shot that I thought were just perfect. Oh the excitement! Then I download the photos and open that perfect one in Photoshop and see the remnants of snack time. Grrrrrrrrr...foiled again!

Obvious tips, I know, but I still forget sometimes. What are your best tips? Please share!

Anything like a writer

My good friend Shelli has tagged me for a meme. The subject is "3 writing tips."

First of all, I don't consider myself anything like a writer. Just so you know. Shelli also suggested 3 photography tips, since that's what I'm into. I thought I'd try both.

Writing tips are up first:

  1. Edit, edit, edit. And then edit again, and ok, once more. Whether it seems like it or not, when I write I try to get all unnecessary words out of there. If you could see the junk I'm going to cut out of this post, you'd laugh.
  2. Learn how to turn a phrase and develop your style. I like unusual phrases. I like to make up words ("heavywet" comes to mind - this is what we say at my house when V has a wet diaper). I like words and phrases and situations that are uniquely Southern. This is my thing. I try to use it to my advantage. I used to be better at it before I lost my funny. Yeah, I lost my funny when I had a baby. More on that another day (See? Editing! This bit was a lot longer before I hit it with my backspace key). Anyway, what is it about words that you love? Figure it out and develop your talent for it.
  3. Write what comes easy. I'll tell ya, I don't have a lot of readers, but I have had a couple of comments saying that people have enjoyed my writing. I have no explanation for this because I hate writing. I actually have an article I should have written three months ago for a website I love. I'm planning on finally finishing it this week (I think). While I feel really blessed to have this opportunity, I never should have suggested it because I'm a born procrastinator. But writing about my grandparents and my family? Love it. It's easy for me. The only thing that takes a long time is the editing, but that's only because I want it to be perfect.

I can't think of anyone I want to tag on this but if you want to join in, consider yourself tagged. I'll post the photography tips soon...