Sometimes, your week just needs a little sweetness. My mornings have been really frustrating lately, as somehow even though I’m waking up earlier, I’m still needing to shoot myself out of a freaking cannon to get out of the house. This morning, I got sunscreen in my eyes while trying to get to an 8:30am dance class (Yes, I wear sunscreen to dance class. White ladies in their 30’s would wear sunscreen TO SLEEP IN A COFFIN) and spent the next 20 minutes crying it out of my irises while trying to get my bangs to not stick STRAIGHT OUT from my forehead. It was sort of a shitshow.
Anyway, I made it to the dance class, and had a total blast shaking my cares away with my friends. No one cared about my scarecrow bangs or eyes red from expelling UVA/UVB blockers. Then I sat down to my computer to work and found that my blog had been singled out for a Reader Appreciation Award! Natalie, an amazingly kind and funny blogger that I met recently through the wild world of the interwebs, has a hilarious and interesting blog called The Cat Lady Sings, and she was nice enough to nominate my blog for the award. I’m grateful for her part in turning my morning from an exercise in futility to an “I’m Walking On Sunshine” kind of day.
Here’s the thing. These awards are kind of like the blog version of chain letters, but since they don’t have all the creepy guilt usually attached (YOU WILL DIE FROM CHOKING ON RAMEN NOODLES IF YOU DON’T KEEP IT GOING) to such things, and they are given from a really authentic place of wanting to spread some blog lovin’, I am going to fully participate, and wear my Reader Appreciation Award like a friggen Olympic gold medal.
Recipients of the award are asked to:
- Identify the award and who gave it to you.
- Post the Logo on your blog.
- Share 7 items about yourself.
- Nominate 5-10 other bloggers to receive this award, and notify them on their blogs.
At first I kind of cringed about writing 7 things about myself and then I had to slap myself upside the head and say, “Rhea! THIS WHOLE DAMN BLOG IS ABOUT YOU. If you were concerned about being thought of as self-centered, I think that ship has sailed, sweetheart.” So, here you go:
1. I am a pitbull of a friend. I’ve been told that I’m intimidating at first, and it’s definitely difficult to get admittance to my inner circle of relationships, but once you’re in, you’re in for life. I’m insanely loyal. This has actually not always been the greatest thing for me — I’ve been loyal even when it is really foolhardy to do so. So, once you’re friends with me, strap in — you’re basically gonna be hearing from me for the rest of your living days, and there’s very little you’ll be able to do to shake me off your trail.
2. I’m chronically early. This week I showed up an entire 7 days early to a date I had with a friend! Really, that one was just a mistake, but I use it to show that I’m basically incapable of being late. I’m about 5 minutes early to everything, which sometimes makes people really anxious, but there’s nothing I can do about it. Years of sitting by the curb waiting for my rather tardy parents to pick me up, and arriving late to dance class and missing the warm-up made me insane. I soon figured out that my town was small enough for me to ride my bike or walk everywhere, but that got hard in the freezing New England winters. In any event, if you make a date with me, prepare for me to be there right when you ask me to be, but don’t worry, I’ll bring a book in case you are a typical West Coaster and you run 10-15 minutes late. If you’re 30 minutes late, however, I’m probably not going to make many dates with you. That shit is just rude.
3. I’m almost equally attracted to women as I am men. It’s about a 40-60 split, with the dudes winning out a little bit because of their “other”-ness. It’s not really a big deal to me, because I met the person I was meant to spend my life with when I was 19, so the whole question of what gender I’d end up with was trumped by finding the person that was right for me. In 12 years of our relationship, I’ve never met anyone, male or female, who attracted me more than my husband, so I’m lucky for our compatibility. I mention it because I think if everyone could see how prevalent having a fluid sexuality is, maybe folks will be less homophobic. It causes me zero angst, and you shouldn’t fret over it, either. It’s normal, and not scary, and sort of lovely.
4. I prefer honesty to pleasantness in my friendships. At this time in my life, when I have so many responsibilities with parenthood, marriage, career, and self-work, I just don’t have time for dishonest, shallow friendships. I watch old episodes of Sex and the City and the thing I find least realistic is not Carrie’s shoe budget, but the fact that she managed to find four friends all willing to be balls-out honest with one another. I’m always the friend answering “what do you really think of my boyfriend?” with my real concerns about said man, and sometimes that means I scare people off, but it also helps me weed out those people who are not interested in going deeper. I used to do this in a very blunt, unattractive way, but through my friendship with Amanda and my relationship with my husband, they have taught me how to safely express myself with sensitivity, rather than blurt out my feelings like a 4 year old. So, I wait for you to ask for my advice, but once you ask, you can be sure you will get the honest truth from me! And I expect nothing less from you, my friend.
5. I have an unnatural obsession with dance flicks. You Got Served, You Got Served AGAIN, Center Stage, all the Step-Ups — you name it, I’ve seen it, and rented the straight-to-DVD sequels. They have such terrible over-acting, ridiculous plots, and I simply can’t get enough of them. The dancing is so fun that it’s my favorite addiction.
6. In mid-2009, I went through a stage of wanting really long brightly painted acrylic nails. Never one for manicures before, I’d go to those fume-filled establishments and get chemicals put on my hands. I love that I awarded myself this frivolity, and that I knew when to pack it in. My husband has a bizarre phobia of nail polish, so he didn’t really look at my hands very much for those months, but he did love having me scratch his back with my talons!
7. I absolutely hate cooking. I am fortunate enough to have married a man who spent a lot of time watching his fabulous chef of a mother cook, so he can whip up amazing meals at the drop of a hat. However, I force myself to cook once a week, because otherwise I have to do dishes 7 nights a week, and that gets real old. Also, I’m pretty good at it, I just despise it because it does not at all come naturally to me. I don’t “speak food”, but I LOVE it, so I’m like an awkward teenager in the presence of Victoria’s Secret Models — “I WANT YOU AND I DON’T KNOW HOW TO GET YOU”, bumbling around in the kitchen in frustrated desire. I usually end up with a delicious meal, but it’s always some elaborate thing that took me ages to make. I’m totally the stereotypical “father” in the relationship — when it’s my turn to cook, I want to make a fancy thai-inspired three-course meal, not just whip up a pasta dish like every other mom would do. I get in way over my head and start using an insane amount of pots and spoons, leaving a pile of dishes and a disaster of a kitchen in my wake. I mean, I know I have several part-time jobs I do mostly from home, but I’m basically a stay-at-home mom. I really should be better at this housewife stuff. I’m no domestic goddess, but, we eat.
Oh my gosh — thinking of 7 things is really hard. It’s like writing 7 mini blog posts! At last, we are on to my nominees for the Reader Appreciation Award! These are the blogs that I read EVERY single time they post, and really enjoy following. I hope you will too.
1. Tanya at The Sky And Back. This is one of those blogs you want to start from the beginning. She chronicles her struggles with infertility, then her pregnancy, then the joys and hard times of parenting, all the while with hope and humor aplenty.
2. Christine at Restless Everything Syndrome. Two words: Feminist Christian. Ingeniously merged into one word by the one and only Christine: Femipiscapalian. Or maybe it’s Feminiscapalian. She is constantly using words I need to look up in the dictionary, but I love a heady read with a good dose of cursing and deconstructing of paradigms. Dig in!
3. Blake at Project Enough. I was SO excited to find Blake’s blog, in my Year of Enough, no less! It is a constant source of inspiration for me. Perfect for anyone trying to practice Operation Rad Bod!
4. Rebecca at Unsolicited Advice. I love Rebecca’s perspective. I think some of that is because I just like Rebecca — in real life I have the honor of hanging out with her about twice a week. But being friends with someone does not always equate to enjoying their writing, but gratefully, Rebecca is a killer writer. Check out her no-holds-barred take on such varied topics as folks who are jilted to meeting LaVar Burton.
5. Rosy at unEARTHed. Rosy is a landscape architect. and much of her writing is about her relationship to the land, which is something I don’t have much experience with. However, the way she writes about it is so beautiful that I am drawn in, finding myself thinking about soil and urban farming in all new ways.
6. Jessie at Ring The Bells That Still Can Ring. Jessie writes so poignantly about her experiences as a chaplain in the health care system. I love how she weaves her own life experiences and the lessons she learns through taking care of the souls of others. She’s a very inspiring person.
There you go — 6 excellent blogs to lose yourself in tonight, or in the days to come. Happy reading, and thanks again to Natalie for giving me the honor of her appreciation!