Day One: I’m a Versatile Blogger!

Thanks to Stacey at YarnSalad, who tagged me with the pay-it-forward

Versatile Blogger Award!

I’m supposed to reveal 7 things about myself that readers of my blog wouldn’t know, and then tag 5-15 other Versatile Bloggers to share the good vibes.

So here goes nothing!

1. I’m a No-Poo Girl.  I have curly, fine, fluffy hair, and several years ago I read the revolutionary The Curly Girl Book.  In it, the author writes that the best thing curly girls can do is skip the shampoo. Curly hair doesn’t move the scalp’s natural oils down the hair shaft very well, and using shampoo that strips those oils away just makes things worse.  So rinse often, use a fair bit of conditioner to detangle, and then use a bit of gel on wet hair, air dry, and curls will stay in place and look good all day.  It’s brilliant!  My hair is no longer the bane of my existence, and feels completely predictable.  Even on my wedding day.

On the down side, this system means that I look like a wet rat every morning for a while until my hair dries.  And camping and sailing is a hair nightmare that I have yet to sort out (beyond threatening to cut it all off!).

2. I am addicted to the idea that moving house will solve all problems.  Careful readers of the blog may have figured this one out already, and those who know me will only be surprised that I am admitting to this problem in public.  I can’t help it!  We moved every few years as I was growing up, and my father, from whom I get this deficiency, even once moved us a few blocks away just because he liked the next house better.  Then I went to university and started moving every 4-10 months.  Then I travelled for a year.  Then I came back to BC and moved every year for another several years.  Even after I met my husband, he stayed in one place for several years while I bounced around every 8 months doing my PhD in another city and coming back to be with him for a few months in between.  The Skipper gets nauseous at the thought of packing a box.  I compulsively read the real estate flyers.  I’m working on it.

3.  I’m afraid of heights.  Some heights more than others.  Specifically, I get irrationally terrified when I’m on structures that are very high, but that I can see through the bottom of.  Trestle bridges, ferris wheels, roller coasters, even metal staircases that use grids (?) instead of full steps.  Don’t even get me started on gondolas.  I haven’t tested this one in a while, so I don’t know if I’ve gotten any better.  I should check.

4.  I LOVE stinky, peaty, full-strength single malt scotch.  I got hooked while living in Scotland.  I love dark beer, and drank a lot of it in Scotland.  In fact, I drank so much of it, that after a while my tolerance was getting ridiculous (ahh to be 23 again!), and I was tired of getting dehydrated on my way to getting tipsy.  Someone suggested I switch to whiskey (water of life), and I’ve never looked back.  Skipper and I made a pilgrimmage a few years ago to our favourite distilleries on the Isle of Islay, and we have photographs of said distilleries on our walls as our art.  Islay is a small island off the West Coast of Scotland.  It has distilleries, oysters, and cheesemakers.  We thought it was heaven! 🙂

5.  Red Wine Used to Make Me Sick.  Thank goodness I grew out of that one!  I don’t quite know how that happened, actually.  On said trip to Scotland, another reason I switched to whiskey was that every time I drank a couple of glasses of red wine, I ended up bent over the toilet.  Even at parties where I was trying to impress people with my coolness.  Sigh.  Thank god I’m not 23 anymore!

6.  I used to be a pretty decent knitter.  Taught a few folks, knit some nice garments, formed some knit groups; knitting was a real passion.  I’ve let it go and come back to it before, and I expect to again.  I love wool, love colour and texture, love working with my hands, love following a pattern.  But in the last couple of years of my PhD I dropped it, and I just haven’t picked it up again.  I have a beautiful stash upstairs that calls my name, though.

7.  I am descended from illegitimate children on both sides.  I grew up knowing that my dad’s father was born in England to a well-to-do unwed mother who sent him to live with another family.  (A long story that I will tell another time)  But we found out more recently that on my mother’s side, the ancestor who had come from Scotland (4 generations back?) came to Canada alone, with a small son.  The full story may never be known, but illegitimacy seems likely.  In fact, I’ve come to recognize that this history must describe a large percentage of us who are descended from colonials, or indeed from immigrants of any kind, especially from those who immigrated before say the 1970s.  Moving overseas was a convenient (and sometimes the only) option available to wipe the slate clean and start again.

So there you go!  Something new about me.  And now for the tag…who do I read who amazes me with their versatility, and who might be willing to share a little about themselves?

How about:

Miriam at Mucky Boots Farm.  Not only did she used to be a teacher and now is a farmer, but according to her blog, she is also now capable of jacking up a building!  Tell us more about your many talents, Miriam!

Amanda at As A Bee.  I don’t know if she’ll have time to participate, but Amanda is as resourceful and multi-talented as they come.  She knits, she makes honey, and she and her husband are currently raising a new baby while they liveaboard their sailboat.  Amazing!

Maeve at Life in the Cowichan Valley.  Again, I hope she has time to participate!  Maeve is a local writer and editor, and she’s currently participating in a very cool re-skilling group with women who are learning to do everything from sew to make sourdough bread to…well, go look at the list!

Another local blogger I’ve been reading recently is Rural Aspirations.  This writer is a new homesteader/farmer who is (I think) also homeschooling and designing their permaculture property.  Lots of interesting things going on over there!

Hmmm.  Well, I hadn’t intended to go with all local bloggers, but now that I have, I don’t want to break the pattern!  Unfortunately, I think those are all the bloggers I know about around here.  So I’ll throw out a wild card:

Neysa at Dissertation to Dirt.  Neysa’s is one of my favorite blogs, perhaps unsurprisingly, because she’s another academic who has switched to farming.  But Neysa’s put her money where her mouth is: she and her husband left school in the big city, farmed as apprentices for a couple of years, and are now in Austin, getting ready for their first season selling produce and flowers from their own farm!  Neysa doesn’t sugar-coat the reality of being a young farmer in the US, and I’ve learned a lot from her.  Even if she doesn’t have time to participate, she’s worth reading.

I’ll be contacting these talented–hey, they’re all women, too!–bloggers to invite them to continue the chain.  But even if they don’t, I hope you’ll check them out.  And I will just mention that the other blogs I read regularly are so brilliant they are intimidating.  But I’m a big fan of all listed in my blogroll…

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8 thoughts on “Day One: I’m a Versatile Blogger!

  1. Thanks for the mention, Toni! Your friend Fiona, who I met at a workshop a couple of weeks ago, found her way to my blog via yours – what a small world!

    I am horrible – really horrible – with things like this. I have no problem with revealing seven things about myself – I’ve always been a bit too boundary-less! But I just can’t single out other bloggers from among the too-many that I read. It feels like having a birthday party and being forced to invite only 6 friends instead of the whole class!

    I am so enjoying you and your blog – it is a real treat to have such a thoughtful and articulate neighbour who is thinking hard about so many things that are important to me – and I thank you for the award, and I’m going to leave it there!

    1. Miriam–what a small world! How neat that we are connected by more than just geography and interests. And not to worry about passing this along; I know exactly what you mean. Consider yourself awarded and recognized. 🙂

  2. Thank you so much for the award! I’m very honoured. Yes, it’s true we are homelearners. And I’m a former academic, too. It’s so nice to discover others in the Cowichan who are “living the Dream!” (and what a great place to do it!).

    1. Great! I’d love to hear more about your “former academic” life–amazing how many of us there are doing this, eh? Maybe something about all that education leading to undeniable truths, or that after so many years of pondering abstracts, we get desperate to DO something! 🙂 I’ll look forward to your post.

  3. Thanks for the nod, Toni. I’ve replied to it on my blog and I’m happy to pass it on. I also am a curly haired girl and have been trying the no poo method. Right now, I’m just fluffy. Think I need to implement the gel!

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