Today, I was really inspired by the bravery of my friends, Amber Naslund and Melissa Case, who put themselves out there on the web, describing who they really are as people. Not putting their thoughts about work or culture or books online, but sharing intimate details of themselves with the world. I decided to take the plunge, as well. Here are a few details about me (in no particular order):
I love to write. From the time I was a small child, I have been writing stories. I spent many an angsty evening as an adolescent writing poetry. Since I was thirteen, I have been keeping a personal journal in some form. For the last six years, I have taken part in NaNoWriMo and, although I have yet to finish a novel in a month, I am currently working on a novel that I am very excited about and hope to finish this year.
I speak German. I lived in Germany for a year after I graduated high school and before I started college. I lived with a host family, went to German high school, learned about culture, politics, and history, struggled with the language until I started dreaming in German (which I still do periodically), made friends for life, and gained more knowledge about myself as a person than I could ever have imagined before I left.
I am a Unitarian Universalist. This has had a profound affect on my life in many ways and I am so grateful to my parents for raising me in a church that let me explore my own spiritual journey, ask questions, gain insight, and develop my own world view and belief system from the time I was a very young person. I have always had a strong sense of social justice, equality, and respect for the earth and all living things. I don’t preach and I don’t expect others to have the same world view as me, even within my own religion. Every person is entitled to his/her own journey and I respect that. As I hope you will respect mine.
I have a strong affinity for the Middle East. In college, I had many friends who were from the Middle East or had spent a lot of time there. With their influencing, I spent a semester in Amman, Jordan, where I learned a little bit of Arabic, a lot of culture, and of the wonderful, hospitable nature of the Arabic people. I ate delicious Mediterranean food, smoked a lot of hookah, and reveled in the dusty architecture that held so much history. I spent a week in Syria, visiting Damascus and Aleppo, learning about Syrian history, government, and people.
I love spicy food. My dad has been eating hot peppers (and putting them in dishes for the family) since I was very young. I’ve always eaten lots of different ethnic foods and my favorites are Indian, Thai, and (though not particularly spicy) Italian.
Art is my passion. I could spend hours in front of one painting or sculpture. I adore Mark Rothko, Vincent van Gogh, and Michelangelo. One of my favorite books is The Lost Painting. Both in Germany and Jordan, I studied art, and I couldn’t ask for a better way to break a language barrier.
I am a firm believer in positive psychology. I choose to focus on all the things I am grateful for in my life, from the mundane to the awesome. Mindfulness, gratitude, and a positive attitude can go a long way. The more we appreciate what we have, the more wonderful things come our way. I have been fortunate to be a part of the Adventures in Manifesting eCourse offered by Sarah Prout and Sean Patrick Simpson, who have also brought together those involved in a wonderful online community. This community is a great place to explore positive psychology and support one another through many life changes. It is truly a blessing to be a part of this group.
Cooking and baking are some of my greatest joys. I love to cook and I love to entertain. Cooking and baking for friends and family makes me about the happiest person alive. I am currently revising, editing, adding to, updating, and re-publishing my family cookbook, which my mother put together in the 1980s. This version will be digital, so friends and family can view it on a computer, e-reader, or print at their will.
So, what do you think? Will you tell me a little about yourself?