So here are the rules.
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the Rules.
3. Share six non-important things / habits / quirks about yourself.
4. Tag at least three people.
5. Make sure the people you tagged know you tagged them by commenting that you did.
1. I may be 40 years away from retirement, but I already know how I'd like to spend my golden years: raising llamas. Back in June 2003, I was the matron of honor in a friend's wedding in Colorado. After the reception, I had another day or so before needing to head home, so one of the other bridesmaids was gracious enough to invite me to spend time with her and her mother. Her mom lives on a large property outside of Colorado Springs and happens to (here it comes) raise llamas. We had tons of fun that day, with her mom laughing about my "city ways" while we fed the llamas and fixed a broken fence through which some of them had escaped. Those llamas have quite a sense of humor, let me tell you! That day I discovered my affinity for llama raising, one which DH fully supports, and I look forward to having my own batch of them one day. I just need to figure out what you do with a llama once you raise it.
2. One of my favorite things to do is go out to eat at restaurants. How amazing is it that once humans had to hunt and kill our own food, now I can plunk down a few bucks to have someone prepare, serve, and clean up my dinner? Anyway, even though I adore eating out, I have the worst luck on two fronts. First, wherever we are seated, it is extremely likely that we will not have a waiter assigned to our table. Whether it's because of a shift change or a misunderstanding among the wait staff, we often sit for a long period of time before one of us is forced to go back to the hostess to ask for a server. It happens so often in fact that DH's roommate in Cincinnati declared that he wouldn't go out to eat with us anymore. (His loss, of course.) Second, there is also a high probability that whatever my favorite dish is -- the one I order each and every time we go to that restaurant -- it will be discontinued. Case in point, when my parents were in town recently, they watched Danny for what was the last time DH and I have dinner out alone together for years. After much debate, we decided to go to Claim Jumper. My eyes searched the menu, not finding the Tuscan chicken pasta I wanted. A question to the waitress confirmed that the menu had changed slightly and that item was discontinued. Neither DH nor I was surprised, it was bound to happen sooner or later. Being my favorite is a death knell for any food or dish. I'm just waiting for the day I get stoned to death by a bunch of PMSing women when chocolate gets discontinued.
3. I absolutely love to read. When I have time for pleasure reading, I can breeze through a book a day, easily. But over time, due to various factors, my choice of reading material has degraded to such a point that now I only read romance novels. Not just any romance novels, but historical ones. You know, with a good bodice rip or two. Bonus points if pirates are involved. This interest of mine started back in high school when my friend Sarah put together a "family vacation survival package" for me. As a joke, she included a romance novel. I ran out of other reading material on the trip and reluctantly opened the book, only to discover a new passion (pun intended). Since then, my diet of romance novels has gradually increased until you won't find me reading anything of substance. Okay, excluding a couple of pregnancy books. But now I'm back, fair-haired beauty of noble birth who was denied her inheritance and handsome, wealthy English lord with a hardened heart and painful past! Just let me change this poopy diaper first.
4. I was scared of dogs for many years. I have no idea why; if I've had a traumatic experience with a dog, it's buried deep in my subconscious. But even when we brought Evey home, and she was a five-pound pooch who looked like this...
... I was terrified of her. She would race around the house at Ludicrous speed, barking like mad, and I'd retreat in fear. I had no idea how dogs worked or what fiendishness this creature was capable of. I only got the dog to please DH (and distract us from our wait for a baby), and I soon decided that the house wasn't big enough for both of us. Fortunately DH convinced me not to release her into the wild, and somewhere along the way, I fell in love. Now I have swung in the opposite direction, and just the thought that Evey won't be around forever reduces me to tears. The only time I'll change the channel on a judge show is when the case involves a hurt dog -- I absolutely can't handle it. Strangely enough, I still hate cats. Sorry, I just do.
5. I had crabs when I was younger. Hermit crabs, specifically. Because of health issues in our household (or that's the excuse my parents used), we couldn't have any pets of the furry variety. After the millionth goldfish went belly up, we decided the next natural step in the evolution of family pets would be hermit crabs. The first one, named Nikki (for St. Nicholas, he was my Christmas present), lasted about 5 minutes. He crawled on my dad's hand and pinched him, so my dad reflexively flicked his wrist to get him off. Poor Nikki went flying across the room and died of an apparent heart attack. The next day we got Nikki Two. (Obviously I was not a creative child, and you understand why it was so hard for me to name Bean.) Anyway, with Nikki Two we had the opposite problem as with the first: the thing would not die. We had gotten hermit crab friends for him, appropriately named Phoebe and Chandler by my brother, but Nikki outlived them by years and years. Long after my brother and I had left home for college, my father was stuck caring for Nikki. Eventually, he decided to forgo the hermit crab food in favor of a more attractive selection of ham and cheese sandwiches and Hershey bars. The little guy did eventually slip away into the hermit crab heaven in the sky, probably of uncontrolled diabetes. RIP, sweet Nikki.
6. I've personally met the greatest detective in the entire world: Columbo. Back in St. Louis about a year and a half ago, I heard on the radio that Peter Falk was coming to the Jewish community center to speak and sign his book. My dad is a huge Columbo fan, and I have many fond memories of watching the show with him when I was younger. A light bulb went off -- I could get Columbo's book and have him sign it for my dad for Christmas! I purchased tickets to the evening for myself and DH and bought a copy of the book to bring with me. When we showed up, we found ourselves in a long line of tiny blue-haired old ladies. No joke, we were the tallest people there by at least two feet, the youngest by four decades, and the only ones with all our original teeth. No matter, I was determined to get my book signed for my dad and refused to be embarrassed. After all that, we were told that you had to purchase the book at the Jewish community center if you wanted it signed! "Pleeeeeease can I have him sign this copy?" I begged the woman managing the line. "I want to give it to my dad for Christmas!" The old ladies around me giggled and the woman teased me for trying to leverage the Christian holiday in that particular setting. Then I was embarrassed. But it all ended well, I got a brief but emotionally powerful audience with Columbo and my dad got his Christmas gift.
I am tagging.... Allison and Mary and Lisa. But no pressure. :) And as a reward to everyone for making it through my self-indulgent post, here are some Bean pics. The first onesie was sent by a family friend who works in the Domino's Pizza corporate office. Cute!! Note the butt of our pooch, who used to hate getting her picture taken, but now that Bean's here, must insinuate herself into every photo. And so begins the sibling rivalry.