Date Joined: August 24, 2013
Last Online: January 14, 2018
Birthday: June 14
Country: United States
When I first created a Swap-Bot account in August of 2013, I had no idea how fun it was going to be! I was most excited about swapping crafts, projects, gifts, and cards through the mail internationally, but I have also had a wonderful time being involved in domestic swaps. Although I don’t have an extremely high number of swaps like some folks do, I am dependable and have good follow-through. My numbers will climb as time marches on. :)
I live in California, though I am not a California native. (But I’m never leaving now that I’m here!) I grew up in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, on the other side of the country. My family is 3,000 miles away (that’s approximately 2,414 km), which helps us get along much better. I am a dual U.S/Italian citizen, which I think is pretty cool. One day, I really want to see Palermo, the capital of the island of Sicily, in Italy. That’s where my grandfather was born, according to the records we have. I would like to trace my roots.
I tend to be a bit cerebral, which my family describes as “lacking in common sense.” But I do have a good sense of humor (or at least I think I do) and love to laugh.
I'm very fond of collecting stamps from other countries. When you send me a post card, letter, or other mail – especially if you're outside of the US – please send it by affixing an actual stamp (instead of metered postage). I will do the same for you!
I am not a very picky person. Chances are, if you like something, I’m going to like it, too. I am a big believer that I can get to know someone from what they send me, which is a truly great thing. I will not get offended by risqué post cards, I won’t turn my nose up at something odd/quirky, I won’t snub you for having a different personality! Please don’t restrict yourself to my favorite color, my favorite topics, or my favorite items. I’ll bet you I’m going to receive items from folks everywhere around the world that I wouldn’t even know to put on this list because I haven’t seen them yet, but I’m going to love them. Trust me, it will happen. If you’re in doubt, send it!
That being said, I have it on good authority that a proper profile contains likes and dislikes. Truth be told, I look at this section in others’ profiles. So, here you have it.
I enjoy profile-based book swaps and, therefore, thought I should include a section in my profile about books. Many hosts indicate that participants should set out our book preferences in our profiles. Well, I don’t know about you guys, but I can hardly describe a uniform set of preferences! Is it a book? Is it an entertaining read? Does it have intellectual and entertainment value? Then I’m probably going to enjoy it! The only real category of books I don’t enjoy much is that of sappy romances. I’m sure they have their place, but no Danielle Steel or Harlequin Romance for me, thank you. So… since I don’t have a real good set of criteria to set out, I thought I’d put my Amazon Big Books Wish List here: Jen’s Amazon Wishlist.
Also, here’s a link to my Goodreads account: Jen’s Goodreads Account.
Of course, by no means am I setting out demands for the books on these lists! I just figured that I could give you all examples of books I enjoyed, books I didn’t like at all, and books I would like to read so you can see the types of books I’m drawn to. I will leave it up to your best discretion to introduce me to a book I have not yet read. :)
I’m not affiliated with Globalbility at all, but I’m really fascinated by this project, so I thought I’d share it with you all: Globalbility. The website provides a prompt for those who wish to participate: “War. Poverty. Human rights violations. Environmental crisis. Economic crisis. A global political crisis? How can we create a better world? How can we transcend cultural barriers? What are the most important questions of our time? What do you find most important in life?” Participants are encouraged to send a postcard with “hopes and wishes for the world to promote positive, constructive and respectful communication.” If this type of project interests you, check out the website! That’s where you’ll find the address to send your postcard to.
I am a staunch advocate for recycling/upcycling, conservation, and a smaller carbon footprint. I wash and re-use resealable Ziplock-type baggies. I have far more recycling than trash at any given moment. I shop at farmers’ markets and the local co-op, not at big box stores or grocery stores if I can at all avoid it, although I will admit I am a Costco shopper and I love my speedy little car with the turbo-charged engine. Everything in moderation, right? I buy organics. I donate to conservation funds and purchase carbon offsets. I reuse canvas-type bags when I shop. I don’t – and won’t – push my mindset on you, but if you’re interested in reducing your carbon footprint or learning about ways to reduce, reuse, recycle, I’ll give you an earful of suggestions! Although I believe in the environmentalist movement, I also think that everyone should feel they can approach it in baby steps. Every little part counts, and everyone can do something, even if it plays only a small part. It’s incredibly empowering to feel like you’re doing something good for the planet. OK, I’m getting off my soapbox now!
Photography: I am an amateur photographer. I get better every day! I am always so impressed by other photographers' talent, so cards, mail, envelopes, etc. with striking photographs are appreciated.
Travel: I travel whenever I can, although I hardly ever have enough money or time. I live in the US and have traveled to Italy, Greece, Turkey, Spain, France, The Netherlands, and Switzerland. I want to see the Galápagos Islands, travel through the UK and Ireland, see India and China and Australia, New Zealand, South Africa - oh, the list is endless. Seriously.
Healthy Cooking: I also like to cook, bake, and eat healthy. I am very fortunate to live in California, where there is excellent weather and gorgeous farmers' markets. I haven't been in a food/grocery store in YEARS. I am gluten-free and believe in local, sustainable, organic foods. But don't worry - I won't push my mindset on you. I will definitely share my knowledge with you if you want me to, though!
Languages: The study of languages fascinates me - I wish I spoke more of them! I only speak English, Spanish, and enough Italian to order wine, but I try to learn phrases from anyone who speaks another language. If you have the inclination, teach me something in your native language!
Poker: I love to play poker with real people – no video games for me, thank you. My favorite game is five-card stud. Right now, I play with a great group of guys. I am the only girl who plays, but thankfully I have proven myself and been invited back. Sometimes the “skirt” takes the boys’ money, and sometimes they take mine. The best part is that these guys are not afraid to be themselves in front of the only girl who has been able to hold her own in this crowd. Yeah, I love that.
Miscellany: I collect stamps (see above) and pens, especially fountain pens. I am an avid reader and devour as many books as I can get my hands on. I love to learn new things. I enjoy all categories and types of music, but I am super-picky about movies.
I have a turtle named "Tortie the Tortfeasor." She's a little thing (about 3 inches in diameter) whose habitat fits perfectly in my little condo. :) I LOVE dogs, but I really can't afford to have one; plus, my place is tiny. I'm not a big fan of cats, but I dog- and cat-sit often and have a few feline friends as well! I live in San Diego, and we have a world-famous zoo here. I love to visit there and see all of the exotic animals. Of course, none would be suitable for a pet, but it's fun to watch them.
I hit a few bumps in the road over the last couple of years, but I'm happy to say I've come through it! I'm an attorney (but don't worry - I'm not the scary, sleazy kind you often see on TV!) and I switched practice areas, which helped me find a great new job! I'm happy so far -- though it's a demanding job that doesn't always leave me much time for swaps. If my dashboard is empty, that's why! But if that happens, rest assured I'll be back soon. :)
I also really enjoy the study of law. It interests me, and it is so vast I would never be able to know it all. It keeps me mentally adept. I like to learn about the law in other US states and in other countries, so feel free to teach me about the law where you are! (Or not, as I find that most normal people in the world find the law incredibly boring. Your call!)
I have also taught law classes at my alma mater. There, I helped third-year students prepare for the California Bar Exam (the licensing exam) by teaching a Pre-Bar Prep Course. I have also taught Advanced Legal Analysis and Legal Writing. I love my students. They definitely keep me on my toes -- and make me feel young!
When I'm not being a litigator or a professor, I'm also a private tutor. I tutor students who are about to take the Bar Exam on a one-on-one basis. I think it keeps me young to help burgeoning attorneys to attain their licenses. :)
Yep ... I guess those bumps in the road I hit could have been worse. I'm thankful, in a way, for the experience, and for coming through it with a little perspective!
I joined a penpal swap not too long ago and my swap partner commented that she didn’t see any mention of a significant other or kids on my profile. She asked me if I was living the “single and sexy life,” which made me giggle. I’m definitely single, no kids, and I wish my life were a whole lot sexier than it is now! I’m currently “sans man” but I’m always on the hunt. Wish me luck!
I've seen a few Swaps mention allergies, which is smart. I don’t have Celiac Disease, but I am gluten intolerant. My diet is completely gluten-free. Best thing I ever did for myself! I feel better than I ever have before, and much of my tummy distress (which I used to think was just normal) is gone. Yay! Because I feel so much better, it’s easy for me to say goodbye to bread, pasta, and other gluten-full goodies without regret.
That being said, I recently discovered that I DO like recipe swaps! If you don’t know what gluten is, or you’re not sure whether or not your recipe is gluten-free, don’t worry. You can certainly send me a message and I will respond, but I can almost always convert a recipe. It is my job – not yours – to make sure I do not to eat or drink anything I think might be risky. :)
I don’t report an item sent until I’ve actually put it in the mail. The mail system is pretty reliable here, but if you don’t get something from me in a reasonable amount of time, just send me a note and I’ll make it right. I keep good records of what I send, too, including scanning or photographing everything before I send it. So, if you want to see what went out originally, just ask. Please don’t give me a negative rating until after you’ve communicated with me first. I’m not a flake. Promise.
Thanks for reading! I look forward to continuing this great swapping adventure. :)
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