I'm a native California girl, born and raised on the central coast, though I've also done a lot of international traveling/living. I returned in late 2013 from nearly 10 years of living and working in Cambodia. It's been an interesting transition back into American life.
I'm an ESL/EFL teacher. I teach out in the community through the local college. Most recently I've had the opportunity to teach in our local state mental hospital and thoroughly enjoyed it. The men were wonderful, but challenging at times, to teach.
I also work as a classroom aide (paraeducator) during the day in special education. I'm with middle school students, which are my favorite, and have been placed with the more intense students with more severe learning, intellectual and physical disabilities. It can be very intense and rewarding at the same time. The key is to keep smiling and laughing.
I promise to rate when I receive something from you. I also promise to send out all of my swaps. If there is ever an issue I will send a message to inform or to inquire. All I ask is the same of my partners.
I am generally an organized, linear person (or at least I like to think I am). I always say that I should have been a math major because my mind works in a more logical fashion, with occasional jaunts on the less-than-logical side. I do surprise people with out of the ordinary behavior or words that they didn't predict would come out of me. Hey, I gotta keep people on their toes!
I'm mom to 2 dogs, my "girls," rescued from the local animal shelter in April 2015. Tica (10.5 lbs, 1 yr 6 mos) is a terrier mix. I call her my mosquito and look forward to when she's out of the puppy stage.
Latte is my little sweetheart red chiweenie (7.5 lbs, 3 yrs 5 mos). She's a cuddler, but can flash her badger-fighting teeth when needed.
My boy, Jachi, is a Jack Russell/Chihuahua mix (2 yrs, 8 mos), that I adopted in 2014 from the local Humane Society. He's super anxious, and it's taken a lot of work to get him over some of his fears. His first year of life was not good at all. He now lives with grandma who adopted him from me to help with her senior dog Daisy who's deaf & blind. Jachi helps guide her in and out of the house and get her out of bed.
kitchen gadgets for baking or cooking, or baker's twine
fun baking wrappers/liners that are seasonal that can be used for bread loaves or packaging cookies, etc. (NOT cupcake/muffin cups)
fun or seasonal address labels for my new address
yard-length cotton fabric in fun and simple patterns (not busy. think polka dots or stripes or small flowers) that I use for making collar scarves for my dogs.
fat quarters to start a collection for my future first quilt
sewing accessories or gadgets: fabric weights, cute pin cushions, fun stick pins, small scissors, spools of thread, or anything thing else a sewing officianado/expert/regular sewer would use.
Silver stars, particularly sparkly stickers that are holographic; star-shaped ornaments; or just about anything with stars on it
snowflake inspired items (see above for types of things).
My kitchen has been a pinecone theme, so I like things with pine sprigs and pinecones on them.
cute little hedgehog or bunny themed items
scents: jasmine; cinnamon; apple/pumpkin spice
gift cards: iTunes, Walmart, Target, Amazon
Teaching things: whiteboard markers (especially Quartet brand), decorative/fun #2 pencils, Bic mechanical pencils, mini-highlighters,
postcard/greeting card-sized blank envelopes (without a card)
plain brown or sparkly bobby pins
Anything from my Etsy Favorites
The sweets: :: orange slices (the candy) :: vanilla Tootsie rolls :: orange Tootsie roll pops :: Mentos :: Sour Patch Kids (I know, below I say I dislike sour things, but these are a vice)
chocolatey things :: York peppermint patties or pieces ::dark chocolate (non-Hersheys & the higher the percent of cocoa the better! i.e. 70%+) :: Junior Mints :: peanut butter M&Ms :: Ritter Sport chocolate (marzipan, mousse, but not raisins!) :: soft homemade chocolate chip cookies :: snickerdoodles :: coconut filled chocolate ::
Other not so sweet things: Cheetos (Plain, Cheddar Jalapeno or Flamin' Hot) :: dry roasted & slightly salted almonds :: turkey jerky ::
Drink Stuff: :: Good Earth tea (sweet & spicy) :: English Breakfast tea :: PG Tipps / Tetley tea :: Hot Cocoa (but not flavored) :: Crystal Light water flavors: orange, white grape, green tea ::
scrapbooking supplies since I DON'T enjoy this hobby; same with bits of ribbon and embellishments
cutesy, girly things with lace, fringe, cartoon animals or baby animals, and pastel colors.
black licorice :: sour candy :: gum :: white/milk chocolate :: anything blueberry/raspberry flavor :: chocolate with peanuts, crispies or raisins :: fruit-flavored herbal teas (except blackberry tea)
BLUE--just about any shade of it.
GREEN--particularly when it comes to nature prints or landscapes, or combined with blue.
RED--the Asian/Chinese red or a deep, dark red.
Even though I like most colors, purple by itself is NOT preferred. It's fine with other colors.
I have discovered (with the help of Swap-Bot) that I love sending and receiving postcards. I host many swaps, including the "Places I've Been" series, monthly postcards, and the colored postcard series, as well as being the founder of the Postcard Lovers group.
I thoroughly enjoy sending, receiving and trading postcards. I have access to lots of different postcards from Cambodia that I am willing to swap in private swaps: UNESCO World Heritage site of Angkor Wat, other Angkor era temples, countryside life, life on the lake, etc.
I LOVE to receive postcards from your area, country or hometown that show scenery, landscapes or historical sites; vintage cards of anything; and most art cards. I even enjoy the occasional ad card if it's actually interesting.
I prefer the postcards I received to be stamped with a message written on them and sent through the postal system (i.e. naked). But, I don't mind if several are sent together in an envelope for my collection. Check with me 1st!
I would prefer NOT to receive a lot of handmade postcards unless they are artfully and tastefully created. I really like when you create a beautiful piece of artwork through painting or drawing or collage. Just don't paste a magazine cut-out on it and call it homemade. Again, check with me 1st.
When I'm not at work or playing with my "girls," I'm usually in the kitchen or in the garden, or catching up on DVRd TV shows.
I am a developing sewer and I do pretty good at what I make so far. I've been enjoying my first Brother sewing machine that I bought myself for my birthday.
So far, I make collar scarves for dogs out of various bolts of fabric I buy on sale. I have seasonal scarves for fall/Halloween, Christmas and Valentine's Day, as well as many others for everday wear. My goal is to eventually make a quilt.
In the spring and summer you'll find me with my fingers in the soil. I planted a less than successful container garden this past spring, but my houseplants are doing much better. I think I'm better at flowering plants. The one's I've left at my mom's house have done fine.
I just made my first homemade jam during Labor Day weekend. I grew up eating homemade jam from my mom and always watched her make it, but this was the first time I was involved in the entire process.
We had a marathon day of making 12 batches of jam and ended up with over 50 jars of jam: all variations of strawberry-something. Strawberry-mango, strawberry-blackberry, and strawberry-blueberry. A couple batches were made with organic sugar, and one batch was no sugar strawberry.
Now I'm inspired to do more canning. I'm hoping to make some pickles. Right now I have some vanilla beans steeping in vodka for Christmas presents of vanilla extract. There's also some mint soaking in vodka for mint extract.
I'm planning to put together gifts of the homemade variety for Christmas this year. My mom always used to give out a loaf of her pumpkin bread, a jar of her jam and a cross stitched ornament, which was always loved by those who received it.
I like the idea of homemade gifts and re-purposing things to avoid filling the landfill.
I like to experiment with new recipes, especially for my slow cooker/crockpot or that I need to use my KitchenAid mixer to make.
Dahlias are my favorite flower of all time! I love the variety, the colors, the size, everything!
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