I am posting from Camden, Maine! It’s officially my birthday (32), and Andy and I left NY yesterday for a four-night birthday vacation. It’s already been filled with unforgettable food and dear friends, plus right now we are staying at the historic Timbercliffe Cottage Bed & Breakfast. I cannot wait to tell you guys about this inn!
First things first: my favorite #AskAwayFriday yet!
This week I paired up with the beautiful, infectious, inspiring, talented blogger/photographer/writer, Tamara at Tamara Like Camera. This is the first time I’m swapping with a blogger that I’m friends with (and hope to meet in person!) and admire, and to do it on my birthday makes it even more special. If you haven’t checked out Tamara’s blog yet, please go ahead before you read another word! Every post of hers is a beautiful story and her photos are equally as gorgeous. I love her honest tales of motherhood and love and she is truly one of my favorite bloggers.
Let’s get to the great questions that Tamara asked me:
1. I know you know my love story and I know..or I think..there’s a very special one with you too. Can you tell me just one story that contributes to you and Andy falling in love. It could be a “how we met”, or a date, or how he won you over, or how you won him over, or a song you heard together at the right time, an adventure, a meal, etc.
Oh boy! I should do a feature on our story, shouldn’t I? 🙂 We met in April 2007 at the Omega Institute, which is a holistic retreat center in Duchess County, NY. We were both on seasonal staff, which means we lived on campus, worked forty hours a week (in different departments), and ate all our meals in the main Dining Hall.
The funny thing is, I already knew who Andy was: my first time working at Omega was August-October 2006: faux-hawked, shy, withdrawn. It’s tough coming in at the end of the season, when most of the full-time staff members have their circles of friends already. I was one of the new kids and so I socialized with other new kids. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t notice who the ‘cool kids’ were! Andy was friends with my boss and friend, Randal. I always saw him around campus, with his fire-engine red hair and camera in hand, photographing nonstop.
He wasn’t just Andy. He was Andy Milford: everyone knew him or knew who he was, and I got the sense that life would be so much fun with him around. I discovered the following spring that I was right!
2. I love your open talk of anxiety and depression and you know that I also have anxiety – unmedicated, situational anxiety. What has been something that has surprised you by getting rid of an anxiety or panic attack?
I’m pretty sure the only thing that always helps me to come down from a panic or anxiety attack is having a loved one close by, to help me breathe, to lock eyes with, to hold me hand. Or there was that time that I’m pretty sure my guardian angel helped me feel at peace again.
3. I know you’ve said that being a mother is a particular dream of yours. When your kid(s) is/are old enough to travel, what’s the first place you want to take them? For me, not surprisingly, it was seeing moose in New England or the west, or visiting our old home in San Francisco. Scarlet’s been to SF twice now but she doesn’t remember it!
(If I do become a mother, I hope we have at least children!) It’s nearly impossible for me to pick one place! I love the San Francisco Bay Area as well, but when I think specifically about little kids, I would absolutely want to take them to the UK to meet the other half of their family. I’d want to take them to Italy: I hope any offspring of mine loves hiking and good food as much as I do!
4. Can you share a portrait that Andy took of you, and tell the story behind it?
I’d love to! This isn’t my favorite photo of me in particular, but I love the setting and story behind it:
5. Okay, say I was visiting you in the Hudson Valley, which isn’t so weird because I pass through there all the time on the back way to my parents! What would we do together?? And I’m definitely thinking places to take photos, food to eat, places to shop, and more!
Fun question! Let’s go backwards: if we were shopping, the first two places that come to mind are the Purple Barn up in Ancram, and The Big Cheese in Rosendale.They both have a fantastic selection of secondhand clothing, hats, and shoes, at quite reasonable prices. As a bonus, the Big Cheese is also a cheese shop and deli serving amazing Mediterranean-inspired dishes.And oh, there are countless places to have fun with a camera in the Hudson Valley! I’m thinking of High Falls and Kaaterskill Falls, the Rosendale Trestle, Mohonk Preserve, and any number of strolls/hikes in and around Woodstock.
6. I ask this a lot because of my moose obsession: What’s your favorite animal? Have you ever seen one? Do you think you will ever see one?
I am so jealous because I was just looking through the guestbook here at my parents’s summer home in Boothbay, Maine, and the last guests saw a moose right here in the backyard! But no one in my family has seen one here yet. Sigh. I love your moose obsession.
Anyway! My favorite animal- you know, I’m not sure I have a favorite, but I love a lot of them. I love sea turtles. I snorkeled for the first time in Hawaii when I was twenty-four and was delighted to swim right next to a sea turtle. It just felt so magical!
And, somewhat randomly, I would love to see giraffes someday in their natural environment. I also love that I’ve been around a few different types of monkeys, in Central America.
7. What’s the wackiest belief you had as a child?
My dad tried to convince my brother and I that Tony the Tiger lived in my grandmother’s backyard with his girlfriend, Tina. He loved telling stories and I remember just giggling, saying ‘No way, Daddy!’, except of course I was always a little bit unsure about Grandma’s yard and may have eyed the trees a bit warily, expecting a cartoon tiger to be hiding behind one of them.
8. Got this question from Lisa of The Golden Spoons. What is your most viewed post ever and why do you think it’s so popular?
My most viewed post is (amazingly) still one that I wrote for our first wedding anniversary in October 2012. I was barely two months into blogging, and soon realized that what you put in the title has a big effect on number of views! Lots of women search for letters to husbands, apparently! Also, the word faith in the title helped, too.
9. What is something you look back on and think, “I can’t believe I did that, but I wouldn’t go back and change it!”
10. Got this one from Diz Mommy: when people meet you for the first time, what are they surprised to learn?
Yay! Thank you for such thought-provoking questions, Tamara! If #AskAwayFriday appeals to any of you, hop over to our Facebook group where you can find a partner, or just let me know if you’d like to swap questions with me!
Have a good weekend, everyone!