I have decided to Live Blog today/tomorrow(and then Wednesday I have another picture post for you and Friday is the much anticipated conclusion to the How Ryan Met Lauren series of posts.) So comment with questions here or on FB or on Twitter or by email and I'll add the question and the answer to this post almost immediately. ALMOST nothing is off limits.
And away we goooooooo!
Q: Can we see pictures of your blogging desk?
|Where the magic happens.|
|I'm sort of an Alice in Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass nerd.|
|The 'i love you." cards are the cards Ryan and I gave each other for our 1 year anniversary. They just happened to be the same card. The pin has a quote from one of my most favorite movies and the cupcakes are to remind me to eat more cupcakes.|
|The pig has a speaker in his belly and a hookup for my phone in his butt. The wedding picture of Ryan and me and the magic mushrooms are for inspiration.|
|Cards from all of the people I love held up on a magnetic frame with magnets shaped like the rear ends of animals.|
|The ledge to the side of my desk complete with dinosaur, windup robots/racecar and of course Tiny Danza.|
|My copy of Alice and my magic wand. Anyone see an Octopus bookmark?|
|The other side of my office. My beautiful library and Ryan's stupid atmosphere-ruining 3D TV.|
Q: So what did you serve at the big housewarming this weekend?
A: I tend to overdo it when it comes to parties and I love themes. So I did an "everything miniature" theme. We had tiny bottles of pop and four different kinds of sliders. One regular beef with all of the fixings, one chicken parmesan burger with basil and mozzarella, one lamb burger with tahini yogurt sauce and feta cheese and one pulled pork with pickled onions and cabbage slaw. And then miniature chocolate chip cookies and single serving cups of Haagen Dazs ice cream.
|I put these prints in picture frames next to each of the sliders so people would know which was which.|
Q: Do you already have names picked out for the babies Ryan won't let you have yet?
A: Why of course I do. What kind of imaginary mother would I be otherwise? For a boy we are almost positively going with David as that was Ryan's dad's name. We thought about doing David Edward because Edward is my dad's name but my brother's name is Davis Edward and that seems really really close, so we're not sure as of yet on that. For a girl, we argue a bit back and forth, or rather I argue and Ryan says "I don't know why baby names is such a constant conversation in this household." We will probably use Gale or Gayle as a middle name as it was Ryan's mom's name and is my mom's middle name.
Q: Have you measured your arms and if you have how long are they anyway?
A: I have a positive "Ape Index" which is what it is called when your "wingspan" is longer than your height. I am 5'7" tall and my wingspan is 5'9". Also whomever came up with the term "Ape Index" is just hilarious. In good news, a recent study suggests that men find women with long arms very attractive.
Q: Who is your favorite resident of Wonderland?
A: Maybe it's cliche but I'm a big Mad Hatter fan. "Sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast."
Q: How is your library organized?
A: Each shelf is a letter of the alphabet and they are shelved by author's last name. The individual shelves are not in alphabetical order but as a whole the library sort of is. It's easy for me to find books this way since I have a weird talent where I remember the author of every book I've ever read. It almost never comes in handy.
Q: If Justin Timberlake could personally serenade you, what song would you want him to sing?
A: Probably "I'm The One Who Wants To Be With You" by the one and only Mr. Big. I like the idea of JT trying to convince me to be with him instead of the other way around. It makes me feel less like a stalker and more like someone who just knows what is best for Justin Randall Timberlake.
Q: If your dogs were people what would they be like (looks, personality, hobbies, etc.)?
A: I've spent some time thinking about this. My Daisy (who can be quite the cantankerous little bitch) would be a Betty White type character. Zooey, who is inexplicably happy constantly, (she wags her tail in her sleep even) would be like Zooey Deschanel on The New Girl. It is just a coincidence that their names are spelled the same (but pronounced differently.)
Q: Now that you are a SAHB, do you take a shower and get dressed before you start your day? Or, like me, do you find yourself still in your pjs at 3 p.m. surrounded by empty Diet Pepsi cans and wrappers from various snacks and then panic and throw a pile of clothes in the wash (or re-start the machine for the 4th time) and set out the vacuum (but do not ACTUALLY vacuum) so it will at least appear that you've done something productive with your day when the family starts trickling in?
A: I actually have a pretty set little routine going in which I have different tasks I have to complete different days of the week. Today would be grocery shopping and cleaning the kitchen day but as we had a housewarming party this weekend, I cleaned the kitchen hardcore yesterday and got all of the weekly shopping done when I did the party shopping. So today I am sitting on my couch drinking Orange Fanta Zero and Live Blogging while watching Project Runway. And I will probably do much the same for the rest of the week as HELLO the whole house is already totally clean because of the housewarming party.
Q: Okay, so if your wingspan is taller than your height, is your foot still the length between your wrist and your elbow?
A: Thank goodness it's not even close. Otherwise I would have like a size fourteen foot or something.
Q: What would your dream vacation be?
A: I'm pretty easy to please vacation-wise. I'm always happy to drink my way around the world at Epcot. Drinking my way around the actual world would be pretty cool too I guess.
Q: We share The Princess Bride as an all time favorite. Can you give me three statements Ryan would say that would make you cry 'Inconceivable' about yourself?
A: Hmmmm. How about one for now? Yesterday he told me he thought I was going to "die while reading probably" because apparently I "forget to breathe" when I am caught up in an especially juicy book. And that would never happen because really? Die before reading the ending of the book in question? Inconceivable RYAN.
Q: If the moon was made of out cheese would you eat it?
A: I would at least sample. A grilled Moon Cheese sandwich sounds perfect right about now.
Q: Is there a specific reason for the Octopi?
A: First, did you know that there are actually three plural forms of Octopus? They are Octopi, Octopuses, and Octopodes. Second, not really. I've always sort of loved them, they seem mysterious and aloof to me. And now they are like all the rage and I sound like a teenage hipster girl talking about her favorite band when I shout "But I liked them before they were popular!"
Q: I'm an accountant by degree and dream to be a teacher, do you have any suggestions for where I should start in the accounting world while I get my teaching certificate?
A: I only had one kind of job as an accountant, so I'm probably not the most well-rounded person to ask but I learned SO MUCH working in a position where I handled the month-end close process. I was pretty much introduced to every aspect of accounting this way, from AP and AR to monthly accruals and payroll and insurance.
Q: Who do you most admire and why?
A: I've long been a big fan of the Bronte sisters (though I don't like some of their work.) I think it shows a lot of passion to pursue your dreams when it is against the societal norm. (They wrote as Acton, Currer and Ellis Bell when it was improper for women to be writers.)
Q: I know you love cheese. As do I. Could you please list your top 10 favorite cheeses and/or cheese-related items (for instance, I would consider a quesadilla to be a cheese-related item)? If you have a special accompaniment to said cheese (for instance, great with Triscuits!), could you please include that? I will then eat my way through said list.
A: How about my top five? 1. Goat cheese. Best when I buy a log of goat cheese, slice it, dip it in egg whites and panko and broil for a couple of minutes and then eat with roasted beets. 2. Cream cheese, good with anything, obviously. 3. Cottage cheese. My current favorite way to eat it is with tomato soup. I put a little cottage cheese on my spoon and then a little tomato soup and then die of deliciousness. 4. Finlandia Ghost Pepper Cheese Spread. I just recently tried this for the first time at a dinner party and it is amazing. Really very spicy but with a really good flavor. I eat it spread on cold vegetables like celery to combat the heat a little bit. 5. Macaroni and Cheese.
Q: Favorite pickles? Type AND brand. I myself am very choosy, as my husband will attest.
A: Always dill. From the grocery store: Claussen. If you're ever in Chicago go to The Point. They have the best homemade pickles. Well the best only second to the ones Ryan's grandpa makes for me.
|I might have to take a pickle break soon....|
A: Hello Jonathan. We are actually thinking about coming when OJ does. So pretty soon?
Q: At the book signing I went to somebody asked The Bloggess "Why are you with Victor?" She said it was a good question so I will ask you the same. (Um about Ryan of course, not Victor.)
A: That IS a good question. He's always let me be myself I guess. He knows I'm ridiculous and he rolls with it. If I say "Humor me for a second..." He always always will. I think beyond loving each other to bits, we also really really like each other a lot.
Q: Can you list random facts about yourself using the letters in your name? And then throw in a picture of OJ for us just because?
A: Loves to walk around the library and smell old books.
Always puts on deodorant at least five times a day.
Underwent horrifying waxing experience before her honeymoon and accidentally kicked Aesthetician in face.
Reads out loud to herself in proper British accent when no one is around. Got caught doing this once at Starbucks.
Ends sentences with prepositions all the time even though she tries her hardest not to.
Never ever will walk on the glass walkway at the Grand Canyon no matter how many thousands of dollars Ryan is hypothetically giving her for doing it.
|No. Just no.|
|Obligatory Picture of OJ.|
A: Back in the day definitely Baby Spice. I'm sure Posh had much better style but I just loved Baby's fuzzy scrunchies and baby doll tees. My sister always thought she got to be Baby Spice because they are both blonde but well-aimed flicks to the forehead always disabused her of the idea.
Q: Don't you think Randy Travis needs to just stay home if he's going to be drinking?
A: YES totally. Randy, I love you to tears but please please no more walking around naked on the side of the road and no more drunken brawls in church parking lots.
Q: If I live in Chicago or visit Chicago, or come to stalk/be friends with you in Chicago, would you be up for coming to a reading party as the Guest of Honor?
A: Sure. Why not. I warn you though, I'm not funny in person. Just really very awkward.
Q: Did you just stick your foot up to your arm to measure whether your foot was as big as your forearm or did you just know that off the top of your head? Also, how do you convince a coworker to measure your wingspan?
A: Haha yes you caught me. My dogs looked at me as if I were a crazy person. I was going to take a picture and post it but only three of my toenails are painted because only three of my toenails showed in the shoes I wore to my Housewarming party this weekend.
Q: What story does your family always tell about you?
A: Honestly I think I've told the big ones on here. They love to bring up when I fell off the climbing rope. I'll ask my dad for input though. He'll probably come up with something embarrassing.
Q: What is your go-to lunch when you are at home during the week? I go with boxed macaroni and cheese (it's best if it's in some fun snap or spiral) with a glass of orange juice. The flavors are further heightened when I'm watching The Price is Right
A: I don't actually eat most days until dinner (I KNOW terrible) but when I do eat lunch I usually just go with soup and a turkey sandwich. Today I have Matzo ball soup in the fridge that is just calling my name.
Q: Where did you get those cute meat cut prints you used for the party?
A: From Etsy seller Drywell. I'm going to reframe them and hang them over our buffet at some point in the near future.
Q: Do you include putting a tee shirt on an octopus as something in your skill set?
A: Hmmm. Never tried. I am quite good at putting shark costumes on small dogs though, so I could probably work something out. Also, if you wanted I could almost definitely put an octopus on a tee shirt on Zazzle.
Q: Kayla Aimee (seriously check out her blog) asked how high am I on your list of favorite people who only know each other sort of pretend but also for real on the internet? I will help you answer this question: very high.
Just kidding. Not really, I am serious about that because I enjoy being at the top of people's lists.
But seriously, write a post about your new weekly routine soon so I can see it and wish I was being all organized while I read it.
A: Very high. Seriously. Also, I will do just such a post in the near future. As soon as I figure out a way to make saying "On Tuesday I clean the toilets" not boring.
Q: Did you get a new house? I missed this somehow. Also, what breed are your dogs?
A: It's a SORT of new house. We moved in May 1st. It just took me almost four months to unpack which is why the Housewarming party was in August. Daisy is a Lhasa Poo and Zooey is a Cockapoo. Ryan is actually allergic to most dogs but hypoallergenic poodle mixes don't seem to affect him.
Q: Are you happy with your work choice? And favorite type of soda?
A: Absolutely happy right now. No matter what happens I'm going to look at this year as a wonderful experience since I get the chance to do something I love for a little while. And currently Orange Fanta Zero. I drink like four of them a day. It's really bad.
Q: Where did you get the adorable piggy with the speaker on his belly and the phone hook up in his ass? I want one!
A: West Elm. Sadly I think they are all sold out for now.
Q: If you could say ONE thing to Justin Timberlake, (as in it's the end of the world and he's the last person on earth standing next to you before that big asteroid lands on both of you and crushes you to death, leaving only your arms and legs hanging out..you are barely alive and he is barely alive--both of your arms flailing around, and you had to say only one sentence to him...) what would it be?
A: I would say "So...you said you would only make out with me if I was the last woman on earth...and here we are..."
Q: Is your octopus bookmark magnetic? And also where can I get one? It's super cute.
A: He's not magnetic, just clips over the page. I got him at Barnes and Noble. Here's a similar one.
Q: As a fellow new bride, married to my high school sweetheart (also Ryan), what would you say are the best three things about marrying your high school beau after a decade (or longer) of being together?
A: 1. I think we kind of grew up together. I was only 17 when we started dating and though at the time I thought I was like "cray cray grown up" I definitely was not. We sort of invented what is now an adult relationship from the ground up. 2. There really weren't any annoying surprises. I knew going into the marriage and living together and all that, that Ryan leaves glasses of water everywhere and is never going to stop doing that no matter how many times you tell him that every glass of water he leaves on the counter is going to be poured on him right before you pour a glass of water on his shirtless couch-laying body. 3. We've gotten really good at arguing. We can now finish an argument in three minutes flat and then talk about what to eat for dinner.
|We are just perfect for each other.|
A: I swear I don't always do that! I was just running really late getting ready for the party so I was cutting all available corners.
Q: Are you on Goodreads? And do you have an all-time favourite book and what is it?
A: I am on Goodreads but haven't updated it in quite a while. I've been meaning to get back into it. I'm LaurenFilingJointly on there if you want to be Goodreads friends. I have a lot of favorite books. Definitely Pride and Prejudice, Gone With the Wind, The Glass Castle, Lonesome Dove, Alice in Wonderland. There are so many more.
Q: What is the sweetest thing Ryan does for you and what is the most annoying thing Ryan does?
A: Sweetest thing: I'm constantly cold so in every season except for summer he's gotten into the habit of starting the car and turning my seat warmer on high about five minutes before we drive anywhere. Most annoying thing: He blows his nose really really loudly after he showers. It sounds like there is a dying goose in our bathroom. Drives me crazy.
Q: Since you're from the North, do you think Southern accents are annoying/dumb or quaint?
A: I love a good Southern accent! My mom's family lives in Tennessee/Alabama so they all have good Southern drawls.
Q: What is your favorite scene from The Princess Bride?
A: I have a couple but this is the first one that springs to mind.
Q: Did you know that there is a breed of octopus that can eat any creature and then know everything that creature knew? I'm not sure how the scientists figured this out, but the Discovery Channel told me so it must be true. Right?
A: If that is actually true then I like Octopodes even more now than before.
Q: Do you have any suggestions on how to create a successful blog?
A: I get this question via email quite a bit and I'm always at a bit of a loss at how to answer. I think what I did to make this blog semi-successful was to really work at fostering a sense of community. I try to respond to every comment and tweet and email (though I am not always successful.) I attempt to turn the comment sections of my posts into almost-conversations and really make an effort to remember the things my readers tell me about themselves. In this way I feel like I've actually made sort-of-friends with so many of you. My blog is a personal blog. It's my internet self, so I try to be as present as possible. To get a blog started though I would just say comment comment comment, which I'm sure you've heard before. If I'm on another blog and someone has left a comment I find funny or interesting I almost always click over to the commenter's blog. And shameless blog promotion is always good. Link back to yourself in your comments sometimes. People click on those links.
Q: I'm an English major (graduating next year) going for a teaching credential. What books do you think I HAVE to read before I attempt to educate the minds of the youth?
A: I wish I could answer this question competently but alas I am no English major, just a girl that voraciously consumes books. In an attempt to be able to say that I myself am well-read, I bought a copy of 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die and am slowly making my way through it while still reading other various books.
Q: What do you think are the keys to a successful relationship?
A: Haha another question I'm not sure I have the answer to. My relationship is somewhat dysfunctional. It works for us but might not for other people. Mainly I just make a concentrated effort to listen to everything that Ryan says, be it little or large. Like yesterday he made some offhanded comment about how he hadn't had chicken salad in a really long time. So today I made chicken salad for his lunches for the rest of the week. He just got home from work and almost cried with chicken-salad-induced-joy. And sometimes he'll ask me not to put something up on the internet so I won't. I just try to remember that he is my most important thing right now and to treat him that way.
Q: How do you motivate yourself to get up and get shit done?
A: For now I just remind myself that if I do not get up and get shit done then I will have to go back to working in a cubicle crunching numbers all day. That gets me butt out of bed fast enough.
Q: Do you regret anything in your life?
A: I regret lots of things. I regret getting kicked off of the Debate Team in high school because of how I had two boys in my hotel room overnight during a tournament because even though nothing scandalous happened, a lot of people chose to think otherwise. (I should tell this story sometime.) I regret a bathing suit I used to wear. I regret not getting any good pictures of Vanessa and I together on my wedding day. So yeah, I regret things.
Q: When are you going to tell us what your other project is?
A: NEVER! Well not never, sometime. Just not sometime soon. (Is super duper secret.)
Q: How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop??? I need to know!!!
A: My sister and I tried to figure this out like a hundred times when we were younger. But we could never decide if we had gotten to the center as soon as you saw the tootsie roll part or if not until all of the sucker part was gone. So I truly don't know.
Q: Have you ever had a crush on OJ (who wouldn't right?)? And also (since it's all about me) is that the magic wand *I* gave you? If so I'm incredibly honored that it's on your writing desk. If it's not well...I guess it's cute anyway :)
A: Hi Claire! First, yep that's the wand you gave me. I also have the blue octopus you gave me tucked into the blinds (second picture) and the card you gave me with my other cards (fifth picture). Second, it can not be denied that OJ is a charming charming fellow but to me, he's just always been OJ and so nope, no crushes.
Q: How many pancakes does it take to shingle a dog house? That's the kind of crap my dad used to ask me...
A: Sort of sounds like my dad. My dad also used to say words with the most hideous accents. Cucumber was the worst. It made us gag. It was all like 'CooCAHMbrrrra"Yuck.
Q: I know you read The Bloggess and this is how I came to find your blog. What other blogs do you read on a regular basis?
A: I never know how to answer this question because I always feel like I'll leave someone out so I'll just say this. Beside The Bloggess, I only check two blogs daily and they are Young House Love (because I've been reading them FOREVER and sort of feel like I know them now, which is totally creepy but whatever) and Kayla Aimee - Only Slightly Neurotic (because girl cracks me up and has a cute baby.) If Allie Brosh were still blogging I would have to add Hyperbole And A Half to that list. Otherwise I check about a hundred other blogs on a bi-weekly basis, rotating blogs each week. I like to stay up to date on all of my Sponsor blogs as well as as many reader blogs as I can. I don't comment much because if I have time for commenting I'm going to be doing response comments on my own blog, but I swear I'm reading. And if I see something on another blog that I love, I will and and have in the past linked back to it on this blog. Also, if someone leaves a comment with a link back to one of their posts, I always check it out.
Q: Would you rather be a mermaid or a centaur?
A: Oh a mermaid hands down. Then I could make friends with an Octopus and we could be on a team when we played Tag with the rest of the MerPeople and we would be champions at tag.
Q: My boyfriend's name is Ryan and my brother's name is Ryan. One is named "baby" in my phone (I'll let you guess who.) Regardless, somehow I still mix them up. Do you have any ideas on how I should remember to not send my brother texts that he totally DOESN'T WANT???
A: I had this problem with Ryan and one of my friends in college who was in my phone as "Ryz"(a girl.) I just put a giant NO! in front of "Ryz" so that I would stop sending her texts that said "I know this is awkward but could you please please pick me up tampons before you come over, I am too sick from cramps to get out of bed." True story.
Q: Is your super secret project working on having a little bambino? I know that's kind of personal but I have inherited a nosy gene from both parents. I'm not saying nosiness is right, I'm just saying I'm not going to fight it anymore.
A: Nope, no bambinos sadly. Actually one of the conditions to this year off was that I had to stop asking for babies so much. Boo.
Q: Since my favorite holiday is Halloween I think everyone else should love it too. Do you have a go-to costume or do you like to branch out and try new things?
|The fact that my sister and I made Ryan be The Three Little Pigs with us one Halloween probably didn't help cure his hatred of the occasion.|