Hi everyone! It’s my first time participating in Ask Away Friday, hosted by some lovely woman bloggers: Tamara Like Camera, Mrs. Tee Love Life Laughter, Christy of Uplifting Families, Stacey of This Momma’s Ramblings, and Amber of Bold Fit Mom. I found out about AAF via Tamara and am so excited to jump in to another little blogging community.
I’ve swapped questions with Amber of Bold Fit Mom, who has two young children and is completely dedicated to physical fitness. She’s such an inspiration to me, especially lately when I’ve been making a big effort to be more active. Head on over to her AAF post to see Amber’s answers to my questions!
1. First things first. You’re addicted to cameras, so what is the best one you would recommend? All I have to use is my iPhone and I’d really like something a little more…hmm…high tech.
I’ve heard that iPhones take really good pictures! I often wish that I had a smartphone/Android so I could take share-able pictures- hopefully someday soon. As for cameras, I have been a Canon girl since 2005 when I got my first digital camera (almost ten years!). The PowerShot series features great point-and-shoot cameras if you’re not looking for anything too fancy. I’m about to buy the Canon G12, which has the option of switching to manual settings and features a fantastic pop-out screen. I love the G series!
2. Where is one place that you haven’t yet traveled, but would really love to?
This is so hard, because I honestly want to travel everywhere and see the whole world! I would love to go to Southeast Asia. I’d love to see India, the Balkans, Antarctica, Kenya, Alaska, Cuba. All of South America. But realistically, the places I would love to travel to and most likely will next are London, England, and Cardiff, Wales. Andy is from the UK
and went to university just north of Cardiff, so he’s talked about it a lot and I can’t wait to visit with him.
So far, I’ve only traveled to the English Midlands. I can’t wait to see more of the UK!
3. Do you just like trying new foods when you travel or do you love cooking new foods also? I love trying new foods when I travel! I think that’s part of the fun: travel is all about getting out of your comfort zone and getting to know another culture and experience how other people live, and that includes eating. It isn’t always easy to find balanced vegetarian meals on the road, but I’ve learned to make do and be flexible when necessary.
Before cutting seafood out of my diet, I did fancy myself particularly adventurous when I ate octopus in Spain. I was surprised how much I liked it!
Octopus on the chopping block at a tapas bar in Barcelona, Spain
4. I think everyone deals with depression and anxiety at some point in their life. What are a couple of tips on how to deal with something like this?
I could talk for way too long about those two things! I’ve always been honest
about the fact that medication works for me, specifically Wellbutrin. But of course, medication is not for everyone. Therapy works, when it’s with the right person. Things like being out in nature, laughter, reducing stress, and getting the right amount of sleep (it’s different for everyone, but I need at least 7, preferably 8 hours) are all great ways to combat both depression and anxiety.
My birthday hike last year: resting at the top of Monument Mountain in western Massachusetts.
5. Italy!?!?! I’m so jealous right now. What was your favorite part of visiting there?
I’m not sure I could pick a favorite! Italy is the European country I’ve spent the most time in, and number two out of all the countries I’ve traveled to (number one is Costa Rica- I spent two continuous months there
). I like that I’ve been all over- on the coast and in the mountains, north, central, and south. I remember really liking Siena and Verona from my high school trip, but I’d have to say Cinque Terre was my favorite spot overall
When I think of Italy as a whole, I’m really attracted to the culture: language, architecture, food, art. So much of it is beautiful and/or delicious!
Bologna, Italy. Love those red rooftops!
6. You’ve probably eaten a lot of different foods, since you love to travel. What is the worst and best foods you have ever tried? I have loved almost everything I’ve eaten while traveling. I’ve been extraordinarily lucky to be surrounded by good food, or hosted by fantastic cooks.
Pasta with crème fraîche, gorgonzola and string beans in Caylus, France
But there was this one meal in Granada, Nicaragua- my first there, actually. It stunk! Some things taste good only because it’s been hours since you put anything in your mouth. I got off the bus my first day in Granada and desperately searched for something vegetarian, in no mood to be picky. This sandwich was on tasteless bread, filled with tasteless vegetables, and tasted like…condiments.
The light was nice though, wasn’t it?
7. Would you consider yourself a “neat freak” or are you extremely unorganized? As I read this out loud to Andy, he laughed and said I could answer that one. Translation: I would never consider myself a neat freak, ever. I have fantasies of being a tidy, organized person, but it’s rarely a reality. I’m mostly okay with that.
8. Do you drink wine? If so, what’s the best wine you’ve ever tried and where was it from?
I do drink wine occasionally, but I don’t know that much about it. I much prefer white wine over red. As for as the best wine…I had some amazing
local wine at a party in the mountains of Tuscany
three years ago. I believe my host remarked This is as good for you as water. So they say!
My wine-loving host and a friend in Chiozza, Italy. Wine is a big part of any Italian meal.
9. Tell us one random fact about yourself. When I was born, I had a little ‘hole’ in my heart that resolved itself. I also had a condition called pulmonary stenosis that meant I had to be monitored by a cardiologist every other year throughout my childhood. My heart is completely fine now. (Wahoo!)
10. Would you rather stay a week in the mountains or a week at the beach?
I really had to think about this! I love the outdoors, whatever it looks like, but I have spent a lot of time in the mountains (small ones, anyway) since living in upstate New York, so I’ll say the beach. I grew up on Long Island
and being near the ocean is one of my favorite things ever. I mean, the sound of crashing waves is on meditative CDs for a reason, right?
The expansive ocean beach in Samara, Costa Rica. Heaven!
Interviewing and being interviewed is so much fun! If you are interested in participating in Ask Away Friday, contact me or any of the other bloggers mentioned. You can also join the AAF Facebook group to make a buddy request.
After arriving on the ancestral soil I figured out pretty quickly why that [Italian] heritage swamps all competition. It’s a culture that sweeps you in, sits you down in the kitchen, and feeds you so well you really don’t want to leave. –Barbara Kingsolver
You did a fabulous job at interviewing; the questions were perfect and professional. I enjoyed getting to know Amber and appreciated her honesty regarding her struggles with depression. My son-in-law caught a large octopus last week, along with two large salmon. He ate the octopus by himself as no one else would touch it — apparently, it wasn’t great LOL
Carol @ Battered Hope
Thanks, Carol- the answers here are mine, actually. I asked Amber questions and she posted those answers on her blog 🙂
Amazing questions and answers! I admire everyone who travels extensively and internationally. I hope to start with the Hubby once the Kiddies get a bit older. I can’t wait to visit, taste and experience what the world has to offer.
You’re right, that sandwich LOOKED amazing…so sad it didn’t match up in taste 🙂
Thank you! I’ve traveled with children twice, as a mother’s helper, and I don’t blame you for waiting to travel until they’re older. There’s so much to keep track of!
Loved, loved, loved all your answers and pictures!
The Mr. has Aortic Valve Stenosis and had surgery about 8 years ago. The doctor say he will need surgery again in a few years. I’m actually doing a Heart Walk and raising money for the American Heart Association because of his problem(& my grandfather had problems with stroke) I’m so glad your heart troubles are gone!!!!
It was so fun swapping with you! 🙂
Thanks Amber! What a great introduction to Ask Away Friday this was!
Oh, man. Best wishes for your husband and his heart. I can’t imagine needing to have *any* surgeries, much less two.
That sandwich may not have tasted good but you sure made it look good!
Haha, thanks Rachel 🙂
I’m pretty sure I’d pick a week in the mountains. As long as there was a nice lake to relax next to. And no bugs. Does a place like that exist?? 🙂
Rabia @TheLiebers recently posted…#AskAwayFriday with Stephanie from So I’ve Been Thinking…
Oh yes, I’m hoping to get up further north to the mountains in Maine next month. Perfect time for river rafting 🙂 No bugs, though…I wish that place existed!
Your food pictures made me drool. Especially that pasta in France. YUM!
Amber recently posted…What I’ve Learned Being A Military Spouse
That pasta in France was so good, we had it twice during my ten day stay there. In fact, maybe I need to recreate it here, because that’s from ’09…it’s about time I had some creme fraiche again 😉
I love that – hearts that repair themselves. That’s really inspiring, actually.
Let me know if you ever get back to Monument Mountain! I love Great Barrington. I love The Berkshires.
I took to heart your answer to #4. I’ve never had depression at all actually, but anxiety is my fierce beast. I agree so much with what you said.
I would love to go to England someday. I’ve never left the US and Canada. Kinda sad, really.
I love the Berks, too! And I’ll definitely let you know when we’re over there next. Getting together would be so much fun!
Anxiety can be one of my worst enemies. I hope you’re feeling on top of everything you’ve got going on! It’s so easy to get overwhelmed sometimes.
And no, it’s not sad- you’ve been having kids! I have traveled but don’t know what it’s like yet to be a mother- just different experiences, that’s all.
I love this! What an amazing like you lead! Great post!
Aw, thank you! 🙂
This definitely seems like a fun way to get involved, I’ll have to try it sometime!
Yes, do it, Nikki! Great way to ‘meet’ new bloggers for sure!
I also have struggled with depression and anxiety. I have found, while I don’t love taking meds, I sometimes need to. Especially when the depression gets bad. But I’ve gotten to know when I need it, and when I can use my strategies to work through it. The anxiety I use “as needed” meds for. I’m finding some of the same things as you though – laughter, SLEEP, sunshine, exercise – all help me deal with it.
Love that you’ve been to Italy! My mother-in-law is there right now and it is certainly on my bucket list!
Nice “meeting” you through Ask Away Friday!!
Beth at Structure in an Unstructured Life recently posted…Talking Positivity and Motherhood with Mrs. AOK
Nice to meet you, too! I have never loved taking meds, either- it wasn’t until the last year or two that I was comfortable even admitting that I take them! It took me a long time to realize that it wasn’t a sign of weakness (okay, I still battle that), and more people than I could have anticipated responded when I started to write about depression & medication.
Christy, what a fun way to get to know you (and other bloggers)! I also am a Canon girl 🙂 Southeast Asia is on the tip top of my travel bucket list. How cool would it be to visit?
It is such a great way. You never know what kinds of questions your buddy for the week will come up with 🙂 I’m already looking forward to the next AAF!
Oh man, and SE Asia. I think I will love Laos, whenever I get there.
That pasta from France looks like a dream. Such an innovative combination! That sandwich on the other hand…you’re right the light was good! I would love to go to London someday but I don’t think it’s in the cards anytime soon 🙁
I told someone else above that I’d love to recreate that dish here!
I understand about travel not being in the cards- money is an issue here for sure, hence lots of road trips.
Hi Christy! Welcome to AskAwayFriday! It’s so nice to get to know you more through AAF. I love all your travel photos. I’m a frustrated traveler so to speak. LOL. I love traveling but had to slow down a lil bit since I had my son. I’m hoping that when he gets older, I’d have more time to get lost in other places. 🙂
Thanks, Rea! One of my favorite things about the blogging world is that we can live vicariously through each other- and that includes travel 🙂 I do that myself, especially now when I’m missing international travel!
I enjoyed learning more about you! Wales is beautiful, I hope you enjoy your visit when you go. (I was born in N. Wales). I look forward to more great posts on your blog :). Have a beautiful week!
Oh yes, from all the photos I’ve seen and stories I’ve heard, I’m so excited to see Wales- hopefully in the next two years! Thanks so much for coming over and commenting 🙂
You have some amazing photos. I wish that my Android took some awesome photos. I think my iphone did better.
Thanks, Christy! I need to get myself an Android, at least!
Love this swap, ladies! Wow, Italy! I think that the historical architecture is amazing! I dream of going to Cardiff, someday…well truthfully the whole of UK! When I hit my lotto windfall…I will be taking several months to tour it all! Hey a girl can dream right? LOL! So great getting to know you better, Christy and looking forward to our upcoming swap! Have an amazing week!
Thanks so much, Stacey! The more I’ve traveled, the more I pay attention to and love all different kinds of architecture- mostly historic. And oh yes, I’d love to travel for several months at a time again! I too am dreaming until I can make it a reality. Have a good weekend!
[…] My first AAF was with Amber of Bold Fit Mom. This week, I exchanged questions with Stacey of This Momma’s Ramblings. Stacey blogs about being a home schooling, full-time mom and includes everything from recipes to product reviews to family life updates. I liked that I wasn’t familiar with Stacey prior to swapping with her: I think we both asked each other questions that made us think! Please head over to This Momma’s Ramblings to see Stacey’s answers to my questions! […]