Sharing Music, Computer Games, and Dwarfs from My World

If it seems like you just read a Share Your World post from me, that’s because you did. I revisited a previous question before completing last week’s questions, so here I am: trying to get current. Better to do two than skip one and have you miss out on all this random information about me.  🙂 Thanks Cee for your continued hosting of this cool challenge.


What is your favorite smell? What memory does it remind you of?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt was difficult to come up with one smell, so here’s my list.

Freshly mowed lawn. Reminds me of summers growing up in Michigan, playing out in the yard, sitting under the plum tree, and generally being kids.

Bread baking. I’m not sure I have a lot of memories of bread baking, but I sure love the smell. On the other hand, it might be something that I wasn’t conscious of. (OK, so my color coding doesn’t work so well for bread. The tan is just too light, so you have to put up with this.)

Roasting green chilies (which I only smell in New Mexico, but it’s awesome).

The perfume my grandmother used to wear. One of the most amazing experiences I had after my grandmother died is having memories of her initiated in the most random places. Walking home from the bus, and I would pass someone wearing that perfume. And I could close my eyes and be with Grandma again.

Coffee, especially freshly roasted beans — no explanation needed.  But I do have a little story, because you know I often do.  When I was younger, I loved the smell of my father making coffee. But I never liked the taste. When I got married, my husband drank coffee. I loved the smell, but didn’t like the taste. Eventually, I found that if I started drinking coffee (with cream and sugar), that was pretty good. Then one of my bosses good-naturedly started hassling me about what’s the point of drinking coffee if I’m going to put all that stuff in it. So I gradually got to the point where I could drink black coffee, but I eventually returned to adding a little cream or milk to it. And I don’t do flavored coffees anymore. Just give me the basic stuff with some milk. Yum!

Name a song or two which are included on the soundtrack to your life?

Probably Tapestry by Carole King to represent all the rich and varied experiences (and my love of textiles), and Firework! by Katy Perry because I’m finally really coming into my own. And while I’ve done some awesome things in my life, I still have a few more sparks that need igniting.

Do you play video/computer game?  Which one(s) or most recent? 

I’ve played a few games in the past, though the names elude me. My current games if I need a little break include Spider Solitaire and Free Cell. I know, I lead an exciting life. Actually, I can’t get involved in games that suck me in, or I’d spend too much time on them.  😉

Which of Snow White’s 7 dwarfs describes you best?  Plus what would the 8th dwarf’s name be? (Doc, Happy, Bashful, Sleepy, Sneezy, Grumpy, Dopey)

I guess I’d say Doc. I’m the problem solver, the teacher, the listener. It seems to be the best fit, unless I was Happy on a day he forgot his meds. As for an 8th dwarf, I’ll go with Crazy.


More Sharing of My World

Thanks to Cee for Hosting Share Your World

Here are the four questions for this week. It’s fun because the questions are always unusual. Consider joining in the fun.


If you had your own talk show, who would your first three guests be? (guest can be dead, alive, famous or someone you just know)

  • My maternal grandmother.
  • Carly Simon
  • Tom Hanks

What can you always be found with?

Coffee. Right now, I have a thermos of iced coffee next to me as I’m sitting at the computer desk.  I mean there are times when I don’t actually have coffee within ten feet of me, but aside from sleeping, it doesn’t happen very often.  🙂

What is the most fun thing you did in school?

I guess I’ll go with college and say the most fun I had was being a Roberts Fellow. I had a year of extra courses and special activities culminating with a 2-week trip to Asia. That trip was pivotal in ending up with my current position in Taiwan. I learned so many things, met great people, and had lots of fun. To this day, I am still part of the group, an in my position in Taiwan, I meet each year’s new Fellows when they make their trip to Taiwan (and other parts of Asia).

What’s something you know you do differently than most people?

I probably grade my writing students differently than most people. I don’t take off points for grammar (because of an cultural overemphasis on being “correct.”  Since students try to hard to write without any mistakes, they have no idea how to just create and write something for the sake of expressing themselves. So I give homework points simply for doing homework, without taking off points for grammar mistakes. Students immediately relax, and we can start doing some real writing.



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Another Episode of “Share Your World”

Share Your World – 2014 Week 30

Thanks to Cee for hosting this challenge.

I think it’s kind of cool that this week’s questions are all focused on the number two, because it’s Week #2 for me for participating. But I need to hurry as it’s already Monday of Week 31 in most of the world. But I’m going to type really fast.

List 2 things you have to be happy about.

 1. Even though there are a lot of details to be worked out, I have a better sense of where I’m headed for the next phase of my working life. It’s not what I expected, but I’ve learned that most of my best experiences have come from being open to the unexpected.

2. I am happy to have so many wonderful people in my life–family and friends, on BOTH sides of the water. While I long to be back with my children in the US, I have some “adopted” daughters in Taiwan. And I have friends here who have made my time here a true delight.

List at least 2 things in nature do you find most beautiful.

1. Baby anythings. I love kittens, puppies, bears, birds — well, you get the idea. I love new life.

2. Geological formations of any kind — Grand Canyon, Mt. Rainer, mountains in general, waterfalls.

3. Sunrise, Sunset (with or without the fiddler)

4. Gardens and fields. Color in all its grandeur.

Show us 2 of your favorites photographs. Explain why they are your favorite.   If you are not a photographer (serious or otherwise), think of a two favorite scenes in your life and tell us about them.

newyear's 2010 0021. This first photo is one of my favorites because I generally do not consider myself much of a photographer. This photo shows that sometimes I can just get lucky. It also reminds me of a very special day. It was New Year’s Day 2010. I was spending my first holiday season in Taiwan with a colleague from the university. She and her husband and their four daughters welcomed me into their home, and we had just a delightful time. This photo was taken when we went to the Hsinchu Zoo. I love the colors, the composition, the memories. OK, I love everything about it.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA2. This second photo is from February of 2014, toward the end of our semester break. I have a post to do about this trip in general, but I love this photo of my husband and me. My husband is the photographer in our family, and so I don’t always have lots of pictures of him or of the two of us together. And he is sometimes a little stiff in photos. What I like about this photo is that we both look so relaxed. The other reason it’s a favorite of mine is because he does so much to help me through the rough spots. He is always there for me, even when I’m not sure about me.

List 2 of your best personality traits.

1. I am a creative problem solver. Whenever there is a glitch in a project or in life itself, I am good at looking for alternatives. Sometimes, my perspectives might be a bit odd, but at least, we shake ourselves out of just seeing the problem so we can discover solutions.

2. I am compassionate. People feel comfortable coming to see me when they are struggling with problems–not just because I might go into problem solving mode, but because I always listen first. Many people, including students, are often surprised when they realize they’ve been understood and not just processed through. It’s important that people feel they matter and what they think and feel is worth consideration.


Check out what other participants are sharing.

Now, I need to post this before the new questions hit the wire!  🙂


Share Your World: My first session (Week 29 of 2014 for the rest of the world)

Random photo: compliments of my daughter

Random photo: compliments of my daughter

While I’m still trying to figure out what I really want this blog to be, I keep experimenting with different things. Today, I thought I’d try the Share Your World, hosted by Cee’s Photography. Each week, 4 questions are posted, and you just answer them. And since the questions are totally random, it fits right in with my current blog “untheme.”  And by the way, for those of you who like photography, Cee’s Photography also has several photography challenges you might want to check out.

When I started blogging, I didn’t do a lot of challenges, but I’ve picked up a few along the way. I’ve noticed that Sheena Not a Punk Rocker might be responsible for roping me into many of them. She writes such cool posts, and then I think — hey I should do that. Go check out her blog, she’s got lots of cool RANDOM stuff. I really like random! And if you like the random photo on the left, you might want to check out my daughter’s blog, Sincerely Kate and see what else she’s up to.

So, I’m going to jump in right here with this week’s questions and see where they take me.

Share Your World – 2014 Week 29

Have you ever been in a submarine?  If you haven’t, would you want to?

BecunaIn the early 90s, I was in Philadelphia with my two oldest sons. We were visiting our friend, Sue. One of the things we did while in Philadelphia was to go to the Independence Seaport Museum at Penn’s Landing. While there, we had the chance to tour the Becuna (SS-319), a submarine built in New London, CT. It was launched in 1944 and was involved in WWII missions. It was involved in surveillance after the war. It was decommissioned in 1969, and is now in the museum in Philadelphia. My oldest son love American history, and at that time, he was fascinated by WWII, so this was a natural stop.

So yes, I was in a submarine, but not in one that was submerged. I’m sure modern submarines have a little more space inside than the Becuna did. I admire anyone who actually works in space like that, even if it’s just standing still and you can come up for air. I can’t imagine being in that confined space for days or weeks on end.

On the other hand, I would say that if I were just going as a “passenger” and could read or write or knit on my own schedule, I might be interested in going to sea for a few days. There I said it.  But I don’t think I’d want to do longer than 3-4 days.

Are you a listener or talker?

This definitely depends on the situation. As a teacher, I have to do a lot of both. I am accustomed to people coming to see me when they need to talk, so I guess I’m perceived by some as a listener. I do find there are times when I’m overwhelmed with stuff, and I just talk and talk and talk. I try to watch how much I do that or who the audience is, because I tend to be a little too self-revealing at times. I’ve made a point of getting better about that. Now when I’m thinking about revealing something, I’ll check in with someone I trust before spouting off. But in terms of the general give and take of conversation, I know some people who also do both listening and talking, so I think it works out most of the time.

I have to say though, that my preference is to do less talking. I like that I can communicate with people through online messaging of various kinds. I’d much rather email or message someone rather than call them. It’s funny because it wasn’t always like that. I used to talk a fair amount on the phone, but no more.

Do you prefer crunchy peanut butter or smooth peanut butter?   Anything with your peanut butter?

Crunchy. Extra crunchy even! At least two companies make it. It’s awesome! I like mine on home-made wheat toast for breakfast.  Thanks, Dave!  ❤

Oh, but you can build fudge around my peanut butter anytime, with or without chocolate involved.

Have you ever been drunk?

No. I was willing to try it once. In my early 20s, I was staying somewhere for New Year’s Eve, and thought, let’s see what all the hoopla is about. But halfway through my second drink, I just felt fuzzy and uncomfortable. It didn’t seem like anything I want to go any further with. So I stopped, and that was that.

Fast-forward 20 years, and a friend (hi, Sue!) went barhopping on foot in the small town I lived in at the time. I had two drinks, and supplemented with Sprite. I had a good time, but again, it just felt like something I didn’t want to go further with. It’s not that I never drink, but I do it rather infrequently.

One more thing. Friends who know me well know that I can be just as much fun as the next person at a gathering even if I don’t drink alcohol. A few of my friends know to just give me a Coke, and I’m in having a good time right along with the rest of them. haha



SO, what you think? Is this the kind of post you’d like to see from me? Should I put it into the rotation? Tell me what you think in the comments.  🙂