Friday, December 14, 2012

Liebster Award

I was recently nominated for a Liebster award by Meghan from After the Ivy League. Here's how it works...

Write 11 random facts about yourself
Answer the 11 questions given by the person who nominated you
Create 11 new questions
Nominate 11 bloggers and mention them in your post
Thank the person that nominated you and tell the people you’ve nominated

Random Facts About Me

1. I actually don't mind folding laundry. Even socks. When I still lived at home Mom passed those on to me.

2. I love having my nails painted and how nice they look when they are but I'm usually just too lazy to do it myself-- and too cheap to pay to have someone else to do. Hence, why my nails are usually bare.

3. I'm not a fan of sauerkraut. Although my mom and dad made some a batch of homemade two summers ago and it was pretty good!

4. I fill 3-4 water bottles at once to sit at my desk. I think this helps me drink it faster and I always have a supply.

5. I'm double jointed in my fingers. I can bend my thumb back and it almost touches my wrist. I also can't hold my fingers out straight. They curve up!

6. My favorite Chrismas movie is Elf. But who's isn't?!? :) I also really like This Christmas. That's one of my favorite Christmas songs, too.

7. I am a sucker for gooey, caramely, nutty brownies!

8. If I didn't have Kaydin I would love to live in NYC or Chicago. LOVE both those cities!

9. The ONLY place I want to travel for my honeymoon is Fiji or Tahiti. Tim knows this and hopefully we can make it happen one day! :)  That's also the only reason I want to travel to one of those islands. He mentioned going there with friends for a vacation once and I said no. I'm not going there unless it's for my honeymoon!

10. I boycotted going out to a bar on New Year's Eve a few years ago. I refuse to do it again. Too many people, too much hype. I have much more fun just staying in or going to a restaurant earlier in the evening. Ironically, Tim and I spent New Year's last year in Times Square! It was my favorite New Year's to date, though, by far! We almost went again this year too! Dang it Iowa State for not going back to the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium. They were projected to go there again for a short time a few weeks ago before the regular season was over and Tim and I agreed that if they were invited to that bowl game, we'd go again too! Oh well, someday we definitely will be in Times Square over New Year's again!

11. I work at Des Moines University, the graduate medical school in Des Moines. I work in the Office and Research and really enjoy it. I do lots of different tasks to keep the office running daily as well as writing articles for the publications around campus and the website. I'm also a writer for the University's blog.

Meghan's questions

1. What was your favorite subject in school?
Major nerd here but I didn't mind any. I really liked my business and accounting classes, I liked English, and even history. I really liked anatomy and physiology, too. My least favorite though was definitely math. Wasn't too good at that!

2. What would your dream job be?
Complete dream job would be to travel and try all the local food and have a show about it. How sweet would that be?!? A few friends of mine have said we would be the perfect candidates for this job! Like Samantha Brown but a much cooler and more fun group of girls!

More realistically, I want to partner with schools and consult with them to come in and educate students on healthy living. I have so many ideas in my head. Things like incentive programs for making healthy choices, seminars for families, taste-testing with kids to try and learn about new foods. Also education on the food system and GMO's/organics/natural products is important to me. It's important to be informed in this area because the food industry has changed so drastically and people just don't know and understand it. Industry is so backwards and corrupt I wish everyone knew more, including me! Ok...stepping off the soapbox now ;)

3. Is there a time in your life you wish you could go back to?
Oh gosh, many! My brother and I had so much fun keeping ourselves entertained out in the country. And growing up we didn't have a lot of money, we didn't do fancy, extravagant things but I do always remember being together. Where my parents were, we were. Always doing stuff together whether it was grocery shopping, watching our favorite reality TV shows in the evening, walking the yard and picking up apples or doing cartwheels, "helping" Dad in the shop, eating dinner. I like that memory and I hope Kaydin remembers that from her childhood, too.

I had Kaydin when I was 21 so I had a very short time in the real world only having to worry about getting to work on time in the morning and paying rent. I was thrown into lots of responsibility early in life. I certainly wouldn't change that but I would like to have had more time with friends at that stage of life. It would also have been nice to have a longer amount of time to only have to spend money on myself. Buying diapers and daycare just isn't that fun ;)

I remember thinking when Kaydin was a tiny baby that I couldn't wait for her to walk, then I couldn't wait for her to talk more, then I couldn't wait to her to start reading and writing, then start kindergarten. Well, let me tell you time has gone wayyy too fast and I just wanna cuddle my tiny baby again. I want to watch her move from crawling to walking. I want to to be that cute chubby toddler that was always so happy and curious. Soon she's gonna be moving out of my house and I'll be as emotional as my parents were that day.  At least I have those precious memories to always hold on to.

4. Where’s your favorite place to shop?
I'll have to make a list. Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Target clearance racks, Old Navy clearance racks, TJ Maxx and Marshall's. World Market is always fun to stroll around. Forever 21 is fun for hair accessories, jewelry, and leggings.  I'm totally a bargain shopper and refuse to spend much money on wardrobe. Kaydin and I both have beyond stuffed closets. But really, that amount I spend on it all is minimal. My motto is spend less on each item to have a bigger total quantity! Come shopping with me, you'll bring home lots but spend pennies in comparison! :)

5. What’s your favorite thing to do on the weekends?
On weekends I love to mix some productivity with being lazy and relaxing. I like to shop a little on Saturdays and then have time in the afternoon to just sit and watch TV, clean a little. Then Saturday night I like to cook a meal with Tim and relax at home with him and Kaydin. Date nights with him are always fun, too. They just don't happen as often as they should. Sundays are usually all about picking up, getting ready for the week and trying to remember to get some time in of doing nothing.

6. Name three favorite foods.
Oh my! Just three?!?! That's hard! Have you noticed a theme? I just can't pick favorites! I was like that as a kid. My whole life I've never had a favorite color. Sure, there's ones I favor, but no one that is my favorite.  Ok, anyway...well, it used to be pickles. Now, it's.....ummmm....yeah, too hard to choose. I love bread and dipping oil, salmon, Greek salads, tacos, black olives, pomegranate seeds, yogurt, feta cheese, warm chocolate chip cookies, cookie butter, I could go on and on!

7. What was your first job?
I was a telemarketer in high school selling cable and internet packages for different companies. I remember my first few days of the job I would go home at night stressed and wanting to never go back. I even had nightmares. But I pushed through and learned to not let the mean people get to you. I really learned to appreciate the people that have to make phone calls to people's houses. Yes, it's annoying when people would call during dinner, but we didn't have cameras in your house to know that! And it's not like I enjoyed bothering people. I needed money, I needed to work. I didn't want to keep asking you if you wanted to buy, I had to. That was part of the job and we were secretly monitored sometimes. I needed to ask those rebuttal questions to follow the training and keep my job.
So...the next time you get a call like that remember it's an actual human being on the other line that is working that job to probably feed their kids or themselves. Now of course I didn't have to have that job to feed myself back when I was living in my parent's house, but it was good spending money and I wasn't flipping greasy burgers :) I had to keep gas in my car somehow!

8. How many different places have you lived?
Hmmm, well lots. There is the house I was born in in Palmer, IA. Then there was the nice brick house outside Storm Lake, IA. Then there was the house with the long laneway outside Alta where I went to elementary school until 3rd grade. Then we moved outside Aurelia where I graduated from. (All these are pretty small towns) I lived in a few farm houses north of town in Aurelia. The first time I lived in a town setting was when I moved to college in Des Moines. I lived in two different on-campus apartments (Thank goodness my campus didn't have dorm room, only apartment style housing!). I moved into a house on the southside of Des Moines with two friends for a year. Then my friend Kristyn and I moved into an apartment. She stuck by my side even though I was pregnant. She helped me with my newborn and I am forever grateful she took that on.
She then moved across the hall to another apartment and it was just me and Kaydin for a short time. Josh and his friend moved to Des Moines so we got a house that I lived in for awhile until they moved out and I couldn't afford the big house by myself anymore and then that landed me in my West Des Moines apartment where Kaydin has gone from a baby to toddler to little school girl. We've been there for over four years and also spend alot of time at Tim's house in West Des Moines that last 2 1/2 years. Whew! Did lots of moving there for awhile!

9. Who is your role model?
Well, my parents for giving me such a family-oriented upbringing. Things weren't always perfect but I think I had a great childhood. I still say the day I left for college was one of the worst days of my life.


10. Why do you blog?
I started cuz a group of friends all started writing to keep up with what was going on in each other's lives. I think I'm still the only one who writes. I went on a big vacation and wrote about that and then just kept on going. I use it as my online journal. Helps me remember and document fun days in our lives and also remember what we eat! I can never seem to recall our meals on my own. And also helps me keep in touch with family and keeps them updated on our lives. It's fun!

11. What are you looking forward to right now?
In the very near future- I am looking forward to going home to my parent's house for the weekend to do some Christmas baking with my family and see their new kitchen!

In the not as near future- I am excited to have a wedding and more kids! :)

And now my questions!
1. What is your day job?
2. When you were a kid, what did you want to me when you grew up?
3. What's your favorite place you've visited?
4.  What's the farthest place you traveled?
5. What's your favorite restaurant and what do you order there?
6. What is your dream job?
7. What's your favorite TV show?
8. What kind of music do you like?
9. How long have you been blogging and why do you do it?
10. Do you have siblings?
11. What's a Christmas tradition in your family?

And I'm nominating these blog writers:
Shaunna at Mama's 13 Minute Mile
Kristin at Single Mama Life
Calee at Life + Running
Emily at Fit & Free with Emily
Kelly at No Sugar Sweet Life
Amy at Second City Randomness
Amanda at Diary of a Semi-Health Nut
Sara at The Smart Kitchen
Abby at Never Trust a Skinny Cook
Courtney at Sweet Tooth Sweet Life
Meghann at Meals and Miles
Alyssa at Life of Blyss


  1. I like these kinds of posts - that's me being nosey :)That chubby baby is precious! My baby (16 months) is chubby too and I just can't not cuddle him and squeeze his legs.

  2. I love them too! It's nice to learn more about people.

    She was pretty chubby as a baby! lol glad she's grown into those thighs though!

  3. Great job on the Liebster Award! Loved reading this post, learned so much about you and have so much to comment on! The random facts...I also love folding laundry, it's therapeutic. And I cannot stand going to bars on New years! A normal $10 cover charge turns into $50 easily, outrageous. Kaydin was the cutest baby ever, love those pictures. And I love how you talk about your childhood and upbringing, sounds very similar to mine. You must have some pretty great roots :)

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