Commenting on parenting, soul-searching, and everything in between... on YOUR blog!

Monday, August 16, 2010

An Interview With ShannonL (yes, that's me)

My friend Kate from Watercoloring on the Table tagged me for this interview meme. Kate is just lovely.  She writes about raising her two girls, including the the ups and downs and everything in between of being a stay-at-home-mother, and she shares her thoughts on life in general.  She writes frequently and she is always honest, thoughtful and sweet.  She is one of my daily reads and I really enjoy her blog.  Thanks for thinking of me, Kate!

So, here goes nothing!

What experience has most shaped you, and why?

Oh, boy.  I honestly don't think one experience in particular has shaped me to who I am today, but probably a number of things over the years.  My childhood and my wonderful parents were a huge part of it.  My parents were always very loving, open and honest with me.  I think that is why I am such an honest person and value honesty so much.  We also moved a lot when I was young, changing neighborhoods and friends frequently.  This helped me become independent, but also a bit shy.  I never got used to making new friends.  I never had tons of friends at one time.  I made a few good, real friends and stuck with them.  I am still that way, and having a hard time making more friends, although I'd really like to.  I have a loving and supportive husband who has been a huge part of my life for 14 years now, and of course becoming a mother to two beautiful children has shaped me the most.  Motherhood changes you in so many ways that you would never imagine before having children.  I live for my family. I adore them.  They are everything to me.

I don't have one life-changing moment that has "shaped me".  I have had struggles along the way, as most people do, and I've dealt with them in my own way.  I believe I am stronger for overcoming some of those obstacles.  But I don't believe they have shaped or defined me.  I hope they haven't.

If you had a whole day with no commitments, what would you do?

Gee, that would be awesome!  I'd sleep in, get up when I felt like it.  Get a yummy latte at Starbucks, then go for a pedicure and maybe do a little shopping.  I'd meet a good friend for lunch and chat about anything and everything.  I'd go home and play good music really loud and sing and dance.  I'd sit out in the sunshine and read some blogs.  I'd make a big salad for myself for supper and then probably just veg on the couch or in bed watching a good movie.  Kinda boring, I know.  But it sure would be a great day!

What food or drink could you never give up?

Drink:  Diet Pepsi.  Can't live without it.  Coffee is a close second.  I love my coffee in the morning!  Actually, I don't drink much else besides Diet Pepsi and coffee.  Horrible, isn't it?  I know I should drink more water, but I just don't enjoy it.  I don't like milk, either. The only other beverage I drink is iced tea.  I am so unhealthy!

Food:  Hmm, I don't think I could give up pasta.  I love spaghetti, lasagna, macaroni... I can't imagine never eating pasta again. 

If you could travel anywhere, where would that be and why?

I haven't travelled anywhere outside of North America, so I would love to go just about anywhere!  Probably Cuba, Hawaii, Jamaica... anywhere hot.  With beaches.  And an all-inclusive resort! 

Who do you have a crush on?

Hmm, a crush, eh? (how Canadian of me!) My husband, of course!
Well, I did always like (and don't laugh at me!) Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.  More when he was a professional wrestler though, and less now that he is just an actor.  He lost a lot of muscle and doesn't look as hot as he was.  But, yeah, I guess that would be my crush.  Oh, and I like Jean Claude Van Damme, too.  Not so much now, but in his early days.  You know, from Blood Sport!  And I don't like either guy for their acting skills.  Not at all, actually.  Just their looks.  But anyway, my number one answer is still Hubby!

If you were leader of your country, what would you do?

Boy oh boy, I am so not into politics.  I would NEVER want to lead my country.  I would fail miserably.  The only answer that pops into my mind is healthcare.  I would do something to ensure that all Canadians had a family doctor.  I know too many people that don't have a family doctor and have to rely on walk-in clinics or hospital emergency rooms (my parents included).  It's not cool.

Give me one easy savoury recipe that doesn’t include cheese.

Man, these questions are not easy for me.  I'm really not a "give out recipes" kind of person.  We're simple meat and potato or spaghetti and meat sauce kind of people.  And I just thought of two recipes, but they do include cheese!  Ok, here's my go-to meal.  Throw some chicken breasts in the oven with mushroom soup, make either minute rice or Lipton noodles and sauce (I like parmasan) with veggies on the side.   Easy-peasy.

What did you think you were going to be when you grew up?

I never really dreamed of a particular career.  Probably why I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.  But I looked through my "School Days Memory Book" not too long ago, and when I was in elementary school I wanted to be either a waitress, model, or singer.  Um, I'm definitely not any one of those.  Although I do love singing karaoke!

If you could spend just one day in someone else’s body, who would it be?

Probably a child.  Like my daughter.  There are so many times when she's quiet and I look over at her and wonder what she's thinking about.  I guess if I spent the day in her body, I'd know!  Either that or a pet.  Like a really spoiled cat.  They have the best life.  And I'd like to know what goes through a cat's mind, too.

Which woman writer – living or dead – do you most admire and why?

Honestly, I really don't have an answer for that.  For the last few years, besides newspapers, magazines and blogs, I have only read a few trashy romance novels and a couple of Janet Evanovich books - which I didn't really enjoy.  When I was in junior high school I read a lot of books... mostly Stephen King and John Grisham.  So sorry, still no woman authors to write about.

What character trait inspires you the most?

Honesty.  Just being honest about yourself and to yourself really helps you understand yourself so much more.  And being vulnerable.  I am inspired by people who can be open, honest and vulnerable.  Willing to share so much with others and risking hurt or disapointment while doing it.  I guess it's the reason why I love reading blogs by people who are real.

What is your favorite kind of music?

I love music.  Almost anything.  I guess I would say that Top-40 is my favourite, but I truly love a mix of artists and genres.  I like old-school Metallica, AC/DC, Queen, Bell-Biv-Devoe, Digital Underground, George Michael, Michael Jackson, Madonna and Mary J. Blige.  And I love Train, The Black Eyed Peas, Carrie Underwood, Hedley, Eminem, Lady Gaga... I could go on and on!  And all of the songs I play?  I sing along and know all of the lyrics by heart. 

Which book or books have inspired or touched you the most?

Oh no, back to the reading questions!  Well, when I was young I read Life With Billy (a non-fiction book about a case of domestic abuse and "Battered Woman Syndrome" by Brian Vallée).  Reading the true stories of the abuse that that woman suffered was heart-breaking.  And sickening.  It was my first time ever reading about such crude, controlling, dangerous behaviour so that story really stuck with me.

What is your favorite family custom?

Hmm, we are a pretty go-with-the-flow family.  Not really big on customs or traditions.  But we do have a few things that we try to make a habit of doing together as a family.  I guess my favourite one is at Christmas time.  Every year we all go out as a family to choose a tree from a lot.  It gets delivered to our house and we bring it in and leave it sit for the night.  The next day we curse and try to set it up in the stand, and play Christmas carols, I drink Bailey`s Irish Cream, Hubby has a beer and the kids have hot chocolate, and we all decorate the tree (and the rest of the house) together! 

Well, that is the ideal anyway.  Last year it didn't go nearly as smoothly.  We chose a tree, although I wasn't happy with it.  But it was the second lot we went to, and we were all getting cold so we bought it.  It turned out to be totally dead and I pretty much decorated the whole thing myself.  Then it ended up falling over and half of the ornaments broke.  We tied it up and I re-decorated it.  It was a sad, limp tree.  And there were needles, a lot of needles everywhere.  Last year I was disapointed that our family tradition was ruined.  I even said that we should buy a fake tree (the horror!).  I didn't mean it.  I can't imagine not having a beautiful, fresh, real tree in my house for Christmas.  I love Christmas trees.  I love the smell and I just love sitting and staring at the lights.  They are so beautiful and mesmerizing.  Oh my God, I can't believe it's the middle of August and I'm actually feeling excited for Christmas right now!  Ok, enough!  Anyway, I think we are going to try out the Christmas tree tradition again this year, and I really hope it goes better than last year.

Thank you so much, Kate, for tagging me in your own interview.  It was fun!  Now I have to send this to a few other bloggers, and add my own question. So my question is:  How/where did you meet your spouse/significant other?

I am passing these questions on to the following bloggers.  I can't wait to read all about you!  Sorry if this is not really your "thing", but how could I leave any of you out?!

Christine, my good friend IRL and in the blogosphere, from Coffees & Commutes.  Her blog is all about being open, honest and vulnerable.  She's learning a lot about herself and inspiring others while she's at it.

Sarah from s a r a h c a s m, the first blog I read after Christine and never stopped.  She's all about perspective and really makes you think or re-think. 

Corinne, another honest blogger who I enjoy reading very much, from Trains, Tutus and Tea Time.  Her heartfelt writing and beautiful photographs always have me coming back for more.


  1. I love reading your answers! And truthfully, I don't drink much other than lattes, tea, and diet coke... so I hear you. And could never ever give up pasta! :)
    Thanks for tagging me! I needed some inspiration for this week... I promise to play along soon!

  2. (and I thought I was already following you "publicly" before! I guess I just had you in my plain old reader... but that's remedied... ;) )

  3. Aw, thanks Corinne! You rock! Seriously.

  4. Great answers! And I'm blushing... Thanks. Your honest and kindness shine through and through.

  5. Thanks again Kate, it was fun but a lot were difficult for me to answer (in case you couldn't tell - ha ha!)! And thanks as always for your own kind words. :-)

  6. Well of course I'll participate! And thank you for including me. It's a fun way to get to know the nitty-gritty of people isn't it! I can't do it this week, but I promise next :-)

    P.S Your day to yourself looks startlingly like a day I would like to enjoy myself! We should SO try to do some of it together really soon. Like REALLY soon.

    I heart you my friend! You are so humble and sweet and kind.

  7. Oh, thanks Shannon! I will definitely get on this... probably at the end of the week.

    I am with you and Corinne on the drinks... lattes and Coke. Oy. So, so bad for me.

    Also... you inspired me (before this, oddly enough) to change my 'about' section of my blog! You just echoed what I put in it. Great minds... ;)

  8. Christine, let's try to work *something* out soon! I know this week is crazy for you (it's actually turning out to be super-busy for me, too), but let's try to set something up! Yay, thanks for playing!

    Sarah, that is so funny! I just checked out your new About page and I love it, smiling face and all! And I was actually going to put something about you "being deep" but sometimes throwing in something light. You worded it perfectly!

    I look forward to reading both of you when you get the chance!

  9. Oh, Shannon, this was immensely enjoyable! I am delighted to learn more and more about you!

    I have a secret...I love to read but mainly stick to books I have already read. Like you, I have had far too many disappointments so reading is not nearly as enjoyable as it used to be when I was a young girl who started reading Mary Higgins Clark and John Grisham.

    We, also, don't have many traditions. I prefer to keep myself stress-free everyday (which is to say I am lazy).

  10. Aw, thanks, Amber! I'm enjoying getting to know you better, too!

    LOL! I always say that I *should* get back into reading but then I choose something that I don't like, so I don't stick with it. Plus, I'd rather spend my extra time reading blogs anyway! :-)

  11. I love the premise of your blog! I enjoyed learning about you, and I'm with you on the freaking way I could live a full life without it!

  12. Your perfect day sounds like MY perfect day! And I love whose body you would inhabit if you could. Great answer!

  13. Good answers. I, too, don't have many traditions and love all kinds of music and want to travel somewhere -- anywhere -- warm and relaxing. Good stuff!