about me

Every now and again, I update my "About Me" page with more up-to-date and accurate information. I wrote the first 100 Things About Me in 2006.  I updated them in 2012 and again in 2016. But it's 2020 and in 4 years, enough has changed about my life to once again update this list.

Hint: To see all the past 100 Thingses, scroll down.

The EVEN NEWER MORE NEW AND UPDATED 100 Things About Me: (2020)

1. As I've stated before, I was born and raised in Arkansas. That has not changed.

2. It has also not changed that I went to college at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and majored in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing.

3. Okay, several things haven't changed, but they will soon. After graduating the U of A, I married a Scotsman named Scott and moved to Scotland, where I lived for the next 9 years of my life.

4. After, you know, several years, I ended up with three children, who shall be referred to here as Fifi, Lolly and Jaguar/Cub. (He didn't like being called Jaguar, so a couple of years ago I acquiesced to his wishes and changed him to Cub.)

5. I have had a lot of pets, mostly cats, which is weird because I kind of hate cats AND I'm allergic to cats. But I have a soft spot for kittens, and that's how they get you.

6. Besides the many cats, I've also had pet rabbits, dogs, and a long succession of fish who refuse to stay alive. I've also had plants that I got attached to only to watch them die as well. Oh and in high school, I had a pet rat.   

7. Right now I'm totally fantasizing about a pet bird. I know this is a bad idea, especially because of said cats, but wouldn't a birdie be cute??

8. Wouldn't a puppy be cute too??

9. Okay, so maybe I just like naming pets. In order, my pets have been named: Squirt, Remedios the Beauty and Clementine, Kate and Wills, Dora and Boots, Chewbacca and Zelda, Gracie, Kitty Whiskers (to present), Sassy, Isobel, Pumpkin Spice, Butterbeer, Panda (to present), the OneRedCrossBetta, Sushi, Betta O'Rourke, and Cookie (to present).

10. Enough about pets. I also like cake. No, I take that back. I LOVE cake.

11. Yeah, so back to the timeline. I moved back to Arkansas in 2013 with Scott and our three kids.

12. Scott and I split up a few years later though. But we remain good friends and great co-parents.

13. Then I met Neil and a few years later, we married. So now I'm married to Neil. 

14. Since he has four daughters, I now have seven children I call mine. Seven children and three cats.

15. I still live in Arkansas, but Neil lives in Mississippi. So that's an interesting dynamic. 

16. Neil and I are both writers. He writes for a blog called Godless in Dixie. I *ahem* used to write for a blog called *this one* and I've also written a book called The Last Petal Falling.

17. A cursory glance at either and you will correctly surmise we both used to be Christians and we are not anymore.

18. Just to rip off the rest of the band-aid all at once, I'm a humanist who believes in Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ equality, feminism, a woman's right to choose, humanitarianism, impartiality, and that free or affordable healthcare is a right, immigrants and asylum seekers are people who deserve to be treated with humanity and dignity, and the earth is round. Oh, and COVID-19 is real. #virtuesignaling

19. Social Justice Warrior points aside, I also believe in open and compassionate conversations with a wide range of people and view points, keeping an open mind, being willing to accept when I am wrong, confronting my unconscious bias, and not jumping to conclusions about people based on preconceived notions. I am against cancel culture, which I do not think is helpful for encouraging anyone's individual growth or consensus. 

20. I may be an atheist, but I support the rights and beliefs of people of all religions, and as long as one's religious practices don't hurt or harm others, I take no issues with people practicing and standing by their faith.

21. I love chocolate.

22. I also love cheese.

23. I'm a shopaholic. 

24. I love hiking, camping, and backpacking. 

25. I am a pluviophile

26. I hate sports, except soccer (to watch) and tennis (to play).

27. My favorite cuisines are Thai food, Mexican food and pizza.

28. I love to sleep.

29. I enjoy reading, though with my busy schedule, I tend to do more audiobooks than paperbacks these days. 

30. I have a slough of hobbies that I go in and out of, depending on the seasons of my life, like sewing, painting, writing, crafting, and baking. (But not cooking. I hate cooking.)

31. I am an ENFJ, an Orange/Blue, a Three/Eight and an Expressor/Controller. (Any other personality tests out there I'm missing?)

32. I don't believe in horoscopes, but I'm an Aries.

33. My main love languages are words of affirmation and gifts.

34. I donate blood every 56 days (or so).

35. I work for the American Red Cross (and so as a disclaimer: all my opinions are completely my own and do not always necessarily reflect the opinions of my employer). I love the mission, values and fundamental principles of the Red Cross. <-- That link is worth following!

36. I'm afraid of spiders, heights, enclosed spaces, and failure.

37. I love bright colors. The colors that I'm most attracted to are bold and bright like red, yellow or turquoise.

38. I hate my feet.

39. I like my hair. 

40. My hair has been a variety of colors and shades, lengths and styles. Some of these were good choices, others were not. Currently my hair is dark brown and long, though I'm slowly going redder with every root touch-up.

41. As cliche as it sounds, I like a wide variety of music, but I get the most out of indie music. I get the least out of country. 

42. I like indie movies too, especially ones that make me cry. 

43. I'm an empath. 

44. I like for people to like me, and I put too much stock into what other people think of me.

45. I'm a perfectionist, an overachiever, and an overthinker.

46. I live too much in the future. Neil is more of an in-the-moment guy, which makes us a good match for each other. He is teaching me to enjoy the present.

47. I keep a gratitude journal. *Almost* every day, I write three things I'm grateful for and one thing I'm looking forward to for tomorrow. I've just added a third category too - something I like about myself. I call that my "worthiness" column, because it occurred to me the other day that I don't often believe I'm all that worthy of anything special. 

48. I love to travel. My job keeps me on the road a lot (at least when we're not in a pandemic). I've traveled all over the world, mostly on mission trips when I was a young person. I've been to Canada, Mexico, Venezuela, England, Scotland, Wales, France, Israel, Jordan, and Pakistan. I've visited 19 states (not counting states I've merely driven through) and Washington D.C. I want to travel more. Visiting every continent is on my bucket list; I still have Africa, Australia and Antarctica to go.

49. Riding in a hot air balloon is another item on my bucket list. I'm afraid of heights though. (See #36)

50. I'm a neat freak. I hate disorder.

51. I pride myself on my ability to perfectly fold a fitted sheet. 

52. I have ADHD, and I deal with anxiety and depression.

53. I'm kind of a hippie, crunchy mom who practiced co-sleeping, extended breastfeeding, baby-led weaning, baby-wearing, baby signing, gentle parenting and cloth diapering. My kids are older now, and I have yet to determine how my kids will turn out.

54. I have awesome kids though. Just for the record. 

55. I love Bernie Sanders. 

56. I am in support of an independent Scotland.

57. I met my new husband on the internet (sort of - via his blog). My previous husband actually introduced me to his website years ago when I was first deconverting. (But there was zero funny business or even contact with him until well AFTER we split up, just in case your mind went there.)  We have, shall we say, a very "non-traditional" marriage. And it's the happiest I've ever been. *Insert heart emoji.

58. I used to write poetry. I will eventually get my poems into a book so I can say I've published TWO books and be an even more authentic author.

59. I like alliteration. Technically, actually, it is consonance that I like more.

60. I like to start projects with alliterative or consonant titles. I'm more likely to stick with something if it has a catchy project name. 

61. I'm a bit of a diva, and I love singing on stage, acting on stage, and public speaking. Pass me a mic, I'll find something to do with it. 

62. I wish I were funny enough to write like David Sedaris. 

63. I love thunderstorms - just not the damage they can cause. 

64. I'm both an adrenaline junkie and risk adverse. Figure that one out.

65. My current favorite TV show is The Good Place on Netflix. My all time favorite TV shows are Gilmore Girls and Scrubs.

66. I am always starting and failing diets.

67. I am always starting and failing exercise plans.

68. I love real mail. I enjoy writing letters and sending cards. I love receiving real mail too, so ... hint hint.

69. I don't enjoy conflict or fighting, but I appreciate and value direct communication, even if it's uncomfortable. I just don't like when people get defensive or reactionary about it. I will always point out the elephant in the room, because I can't stand awkwardness or inauthenticity. 

70. I also can't stand passive aggressiveness. I don't like aggressive aggressiveness either though. Just be an adult about it! (Unless you're a kid. But even then, be an adult about it!)

71. I often talk to my kids like they are my co-workers. I can't understand why they can't just be collaborative and work together more?

72. I enjoy event planning. When I was a stay-at-home-mom, this was expressed in throwing killer birthday parties. As a professional, this looks like organizing creative fundraisers and special events. If I can include a theme too? Oh man. 

73. I'm a Rotarian.

74. I serve on the board of the Arkansas State Independent Living Council as the board secretary.

75. I love to deploy to disasters with the Red Cross. Being on the ground during a large scale disaster response and physically touching the mission is what keeps me going when the day-to-day going gets tough.

76. I value honesty and compassion above pretty much all other values in life. 

77. I prefer everything to be clear and unambiguous. When ambiguity is inevitable, I do not like it. That makes 2020 a really tough year for me.

78. I have ten tattoos and ten piercings. I think it's ten for both... I haven't counted in a while.

79. I have an affinity for cute shoes.

80. I live by my day planner. Not my digital Outlook calendar - my 18-month spiral-bound paper planner. 

81. I use color-coded erasable pens in my day planner, and I reward myself for accomplishments with stickers.

82. My birthday is April Fools Day.

83.  I know it's cheesy, but I love Valentine's Day. It's kind of my favorite. I love all holidays really though. Any reason to celebrate and I'm on it. Shall we plan a themed party? I'll hit up Party City.

84. I have Imposter Syndrome. 

85. I'm a bit of a hypochondriac.

86. My favorite dessert (besides cake) is homemade banana pudding. I make it from scratch using my great-grandmother's recipe. I want some now. 

87. I also love pies. All pies. All Pies Matter.

88. I was briefly in a fake band in college called Heart Union. We didn't actually play instruments or perform gigs, but we sold merch.

89. I was briefly in a real band in college called Sharkie. I was briefly in a band in high school too called Oswald's Pool. 

90. I was a DJ on our college radio station, KXUA 88.3.

91. I like all of my dishes to match and put away in a very specific layout. However, I like all of my coffee mugs to be mismatched and different, so no one gets their cups mixed up. 

92. My clothes are arranged by color in my closet. (Consonance!)

93. I make my bed *almost* every day when I get up. 

94. I listen to NPR.

95. I don't believe in ghosts, but I kind of do.

96. I don't care how old I am, I love stuffed animals.

97. I like to problem solve.

98. I take my tea with milk, no sugar.

99. I love musicals. 

100. I love lists.

The EVEN NEWER 100 Things About Me: (2016)

1. I was born, raised and educated in Arkansas, the Natural State. (Previously known as "The Land of Opportunity".)

2. I attended the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and got my degree in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing.

3. I then married a Scotsman named Scott and moved to Greenock, Scotland, where we stayed for nine years. [Recent developments: Also now getting divorced from said Scotsman.]

4. During those nine years, we created three awesome and insane children, Fifi, Lolly and Jaguar (not their real names).

5. When Jaguar was 10 months old, the five of us moved back to Arkansas.

6. I was a devout Christian for 30+ years.

7. I am now an atheist.

8. I wrote a book about it.

9. In school and college, I went on several mission trips. These trips took me around the world to Venezuela, Mexico, Canada, Israel, Jordan, Pakistan, Wales and Scotland.

10. I've also been to France and England but not on a mission trip.

11. I love languages, and while I am the master of none, I have studied French, Arabic, Scots Gaelic and British Sign Language.  I am very good at English though.

12. In fact, English grammar is my pet passion, and I love it so much that I took an advanced grammar course in college FOR FUN. It was a required course for aspiring English teachers, and I was the only person taking that class as an elective.

13. When I moved to the UK, I purchased Fowler's Modern English Usage, so I could adapt to proper British grammar instead of American. Moving back to the US and re-adapting to American grammar has been confusing.

14. Speaking of grammar, one of my embarrassing intellectual memories includes freshman year in college writing in a paper that I was great at "grammer" and the professor replying in red ink "just not at spelling?". Cringe.

15. Also, I love the Oxford comma, but a career requiring AP style is slowly dousing that flame. I still believe in it but not as passionately as I once did.

16. Speaking of career, I am the regional communications director for the American Red Cross Serving Oklahoma and Arkansas. I have previously kept that anonymous, but to avoid conflict of interest, I fully disclose that now.

17. And I disclose that also to state that all opinions shared in this blog are mine (or used to be mine) and are not the opinions of my employer.  (Disclaimer complete. Moving on.)

18. Before working for the Red Cross, I worked in communications for a health care nonprofit, where I learned that according to AP style, "health care" is two words, not one. However, "voicemail" is now one word.

19. My hobbies change frequently, but over the years they have consisted of baking, sewing, card-making, painting, acting and exercising. The only hobbies that have truly weathered all the seasons of my life though are writing and reading.

20. Hobbies I have tried to take up but failed at miserably include gardening and crocheting.

21. I used to bite my nails horribly until I turned 18. At 18 I decided to become a grown-up and somehow kicked the habit. Now I'm kind of precious about my nails.

22. I do still bite them when I get nervous or anxious though.

23. I get anxious a lot actually and have a serious problem with over-analyzing everything in my life. Even my therapist tells me I need to get out of my own head and stop over-thinking everything.

24. I've just started seeing a therapist. I feel sorry for her.

25. Along with anxiety, I also deal with depression, body image/relationship with food and ADHD.

26. I cope pretty well with all of those things though. Or so I think. My therapist may think otherwise.

27. I also struggle with a whole slough of issues stemming from my life as an evangelical, Calvinist Christian, that I'm only just starting to unpack. I know that's an unpopular thing to say in the Bible Belt where being a Christian is supposed to be the best life choice for happiness and well-being, but in my spiritually masochistic heart, it wasn't.

28. Even though I'm an atheist, I'm not a "militant atheist", and I don't hate believers of any faith. I genuinely hope all people find peace and happiness in their faith or lack thereof. So I will never try to convince someone to stop believing what they believe. I'm afraid too many people don't understand that about me though.

29. I was a DJ for our college radio station, KXUA. I called myself DJ Xia and for some reason always spoke in a low voice while on the air. I certainly hope that I have kicked that habit now, especially as my job requires some on-air time here and there.

30. I like to change the subject sometimes when it gets too intense or controversial.

31. I used to be one to avoid conflict, and at times I still do when the conflict is unnecessary, but I'm also now very good at approaching conflict head on when needed. I will be frank with you if it will make a bad or weird situation better.

32. I am a control freak and a perfectionist.

33. I am ambitious and competitive.

34. I am also a really good listener.

35. I am relentlessly too honest and am trying to learn if that's a good thing or a bad thing.

36. When I was in fifth grade, I accidentally set part of my grandpa's cow field on fire with a bottle rocket. It was absolutely terrifying watching at least an acre, if not more, instantly become engulfed in flames. (No one was hurt.)

37. I was afraid of fire for a very long time after that. Couldn't even stand candles.

38. My other childhood fears were kidnappers and burglars. I blame Unsolved Mysteries and Rescue 911.

39. I also had a lifelong phobia of spiders. FOR REAL PHOBIA. I could not get close enough to them to even kill them or stick a cup over them. But when I moved back to Arkansas as a mother who had to protect her children from the (sometimes venomous) evil eight-legged hellspawn, I had to overcome that fear in order to get close enough to them to kill them. Now I hate them but don't have panic attacks over them. (Which is no lie - I used to have panic attacks over spiders.)

40. I used to have a pet lhaso apso named Bandit. He got dognapped.

41. I always think I'm a pet person, because I love other people's pets. But I'm not good at taking care of my own pets. I've had cats, rabbits, a rat, fish and now a dog. Luckily my [soon to be ex] husband is a really good dog daddy, and my cat fends for itself.

42. Even knowing I'm not a good pet parent, I still want a lhaso apso or some other kind of lap dog to be my best friend. I also always think I'd like a bird.

43. And for my yard I want chickens and a goat. Scott says absolutely not to the goat, but I think there's wiggle room with the chickens. [Recent developments: Cannot cope with idea of chickens while single]

44. I am not a vegetarian, even though ethically I think I really should be one. We did try becoming vegetarians once but only lasted a week. I don't really like vegetables.

45. To make up for not being a vegetarian, I buy only free range eggs. I used to only buy free range chicken too, but holy hell that's expensive.

46. Still, every time I pass a chicken truck on the road, I re-evaluate my stance on eating meat.

47. I am a passionate breastfeeding advocate. I used to be a breastfeeding peer supporter with the Breastfeeding Network, and my mummy friends and I started a series of weekly breastfeeding support groups throughout Inverclyde, Scotland.

48. We also started a nonprofit (not-for-profit is actually what it was called, since it was in the UK) called Inverclyde Breastfeeding Mums, and we did some pretty cool stuff.

49. I breastfed all three of my kids for two to two and a half years each.

50. I even tandem fed my daughters for a few months.

51. While a "stay-at-home-mum", I taught baby signing classes, worked as a childminder and ran a online shop called Into Bento, which sold bento boxes and lunch accessories. (The shop is closed, but I've kept the Lunch Is Boring blog online.)

52. I also had the privilege and pleasure of doing some travel writing for SearchScotland.org, now SlainteScotland.com.

53. I used to be the desktop publisher for a private high school in Glasgow. I designed, laid out, wrote for and edited the annual magazine and the monthly newsletters. I saw the job advertised in the paper, had no experience with Photoshop or InDesign whatsoever, but quickly taught myself the basics, interviewed for the job and got hired. It was the best "fake it 'til you make it" experience of my life. It got me on my communications career path.

54. I believe in "fake it 'til you make it", as long as you know you are capable of making it.

55. I am also a chronic sufferer of impostor syndrome, so what do I know?

56. I think I am a strong leader and a good manager. But I'm also a self-doubter and my own worst critic, so ask me again tomorrow and I might say the exact opposite.

57. I used to think of myself as solely right-brained, but as it turns out, I'm pretty left-brained too. I'm creative but analytical, scatterbrained but organized, emotional but rational. I'm either a unicorn or a hot mess.

58. I'm definitely an extrovert though.

59. I'm ENFJ to be precise (Extrovert, iNtuitive, Feeling, Judging). The F and J are very close to the T and P though (Thinking and Perceiving).

60. I love monkeys. I have a unrealistic dream of having a pet monkey one day, like an organ grinder kind of monkey.

61. My favorite colors are orange, green and purple.

62. I want an orange car.

63. I enjoy sorting and folding laundry. It calms me.

64. I hate sweeping but love vacuuming.

65. I never call it vacuuming; it's still "hoovering" in my mind. Just as gas is still petrol, diapers are still nappies, underwear is still pants, and Scotch is still whisky. Some British and/or Scottish words will never and should never die.

66. Because words like crabbit, dreich, numpty, mingin', boggin', steamin', glaikit and tumpshie just do not have proper English equivalents.

67. I love shoes.

68. I love makeup. I never wore it much until I turned 30. Then, as with the nail biting, I decided to become a grown-up and start wearing it.  I love wearing makeup now.

69. I love my hair. My hair has been every cut, style and color imaginable. It's always been pretty short until I moved back to Arkansas. I've been growing it out ever since, and I LOVE having long hair. It's also managed to stay the same color for a while now, which is weird and likely to change soon.

70. I was in Forensics in high school. Not the study of dead people but competitive speech and drama. My favorite events were poetry reading, improv, duet acting, solo acting and mime. I was actually pretty good at mime.

71. I did musical theater in high school as well but never got a lead role in a musical. I did play Truvy in Steel Magnolias though.

72. So then in Scotland I got involved with amateur dramatics and did theater there too. Again, no lead roles except for Shelby in Steel Magnolias. It was by far my favorite part I ever played.

73. But actually I did play a few other lead roles. In Scotland I performed in pantomimes, which are not the same thing as silent mime, and was the Principal Boy a couple of times. Panto is amazing, and I wish they did them here in the States.

74. In high school I entered two beauty pageants. I was not the beauty pageant type, but hello, scholarships! I got a measly $500 scholarship out of one of them for winning the "Be Yourself Award" or something stupid like that. In the interview, they asked me about my second place state championship award for mime and asked me to do a mime of how I felt getting ready that morning. I wanted to kill myself.

75. I had the best friends in high school. Many of us still keep in touch to this day, and many of us have the most awesome lives now. Class of 2000 was an epic class.

76. I also had some really awesome friends in Scotland. Even though we're an ocean apart, I still know I could call many of them, and they'd be there for me.

77. I now have some awesome friends thanks to the book club I joined. The Velociraptors in an Opium Den ladies are, well, awesome. And we actually read books in this book club.

78. I love to sing. I used to lead worship at church, but now that I don't have church, or musical theater for that matter, I just sing in the car really loud. And sometimes I karaoke.

79. My favorite alcoholic beverages are gin and whisky ("Scotch"). I like my gin with tonic or juice, and I drink my whisky neat.

80. I never win anything, except that one time I won the Glenmorangie grand prize of a weekend trip for eight to stay at the Glenmorangie House in Tain, Scotland. Scott and I, along with three other couples, spent a three-day weekend enjoying activities such as skeet shooting, yachting Loch Ness, strolling along the beach, touring the Glenmorangie distillery and drinking all the free whisky we wanted. Best prize ever.

81. Oh, and I also won a pager from a radio station in the '90s. I was so cool.

82. I used to go to raves in the '90s too. I started out a kandie kid, ended up a jungle lover. My raver name on the rave forums was xialuvsjungle.

83. I then got into indie and became a really unsuccessful hipster.

84. I used to be the door girl at two bars, JR's Lightbulb Club and the Dickson Theater.

85. Other career choices in my past include Little Caesar's and Pizza Hut in high school. I also worked in a law firm during the summers.

86. While at college I also worked in the university's development office. Somehow I managed to do school full time, work in the development office between and after classes, and be the door girl at night. I don't know if college students get more hours in their day than adults do? Or maybe the secret to success is living off $5 Eureka pizzas and Diet Dr Pepper.

87. It certainly wasn't beer, because I did not drink alcohol until I was 21. I got very sick on my 21st birthday.

88. My birthday is April Fools Day.

89. My best birthday party was my 30th. I had a "Music Mania" party complete with karaoke and a DJ and all things '80s and '90s. Everyone dressed up as a music sensation. I was very pregnant but pulled off a pretty sweet Gwen Stefani.

90. I do not think I'd ever like to be pregnant again.

91. I have changed a lot as a mum, but the things I still believe in are gentle parenting (no spanking), babywearing, infant cosleeping, breastfeeding and dinner together around the table. As my kids get older I'm entering a whole new world of parenting, which is terrifying, but I think I'm doing okay.

92. I am without a doubt screwing up my kids.

93. I love working for the Red Cross, as it matches my natural inclination for helping others. I also strongly support other causes, such as LGBT rights and women's rights. I actively support causes such as Lucie's Place, a home for LGBT young people, and Femme International, which provides among other things reusable feminine hygiene products for girls in Africa who would otherwise be unable to attend school for a week every month due to her periods.

94. I am a feminist.

95. For someone who has no problem posting intimate details of her life online and publishing a book about the most vulnerable time in her life, I am very guarded and trust very few people in my real everyday life. In other words, I make no sense.

96. I hate for anyone to see me cry and hate to be seen as weak or needy. I like to be self-sufficient and hate asking for help.

97. I used to collect kokeshi dolls.

98. The only sports I care an ounce for are soccer, tennis and baseball. The only sports team I care about is Glasgow Rangers, and even they are not really on my radar anymore.

99.  I love politics. I am a registered Democrat though I'm more left wing than they are.

100. I love making lists.

The NEW 100 Things About Me: (circa 2012)

1. I was born and raised in Arkansas, USA.

2. I went to the University of Arkansas and got my degree in English, with emphasis in Creative Writing.

3. I went on several mission trips growing up, and ended up travelling all over the world. These trips took me to Mexico, Canada, Venezuela, Pakistan, Israel, Jordan and Scotland.

4. In Scotland I met my future husband (though unbeknownst to us at the time).

5. I dated several guys who I thought was 'The One' but was wrong.

6. Then a series of events lead me back to Scotland and therefore Scott.  A year later we were married, and I moved to Greenock, Scotland.

7. Together we have three magnificent but insane children, Fifi, Lolly and Jaguar (not their real names - their real  names are all Scottish names).

8. I love languages and have studied French, Arabic, Scots Gaelic and British Sign Language, but I don't speak any of these fluently.  At all.

9. I won first place in the annual Arabic Speech Contest at University by playing an original song in Arabic on the guitar.  The best part is, I don't
play the guitar.  At all. 

10. Aside from the countries visited on mission trips, I have also been to France.  And England and Wales, which are indeed different countries, even if they are a part of the United Kingdom.

11.  I am terrible at math.  I self-diagnosed myself as dyscalculiac, but this makes Scott roll his eyes.  But for real, I think I am.

12. My husband calls me a hippy.  I prefer to call myself a natural mama. Though the only washing my hair once a week thing might tip me over the edge. (But I draw the line at tie-dye!)

13. Effectively this just means I believe in natural birth, extended breastfeeding, baby-wearing, co-sleeping, natural foods and natural remedies.  I do not like using medicines, am thoroughly against circumcision, and, well, only wash my hair once a week (if that).

14. But I bet you anything my hair is healthier and shinier than yours! 

15. Speaking of hair, I dye it a lot.  Currently I am platinum blonde, but in the past I've been every colour between platinum and midnight black.  With some blues, pinks and purples mixed in as required.

16. I love resistance/ strength training classes like BodyPump.

17. I hate dieting though.

18. I freaking love me some chocolate fudge cake.

19. I also love crisps.  ('Chips' if you are American.)

20. I love the Scots dialect.  Words like crabbit, drookit, steamin' and eejit are just too good to be true.

21. I used to write a lot of poetry, but sadly, I don't write as much anymore.

22. I was raised in The Most Republican household, but somewhere down the line I rebelled and am totally a liberal.

23. But 'liberal' does not necessarily mean 'Democrat'.  Nor does it mean I am 'Labour'.  If I were able to vote in the UK, I'd probably vote Scottish Nationalist Party (SNP).

24. This is not because I necessarily want to see Scotland independent but because I like a lot of what the SNP have done for Scotland.  The independence thing could go either way, and I'd be fine with it. 

25. But I'm not a UK citizen, so I cannot vote.

26. I'm still a US citizen, and I could vote if I ever remembered to order a ballot in time, but I never remember.  You have to order your ballot, like, decades or something before the next election.

27. I have an indoor pet rabbit named Chewbacca.

28. I always think - when I don't have a pet - that I am a pet person, but then when I get a pet, I realise I am not a very good pet person.  

29. We used to have another rabbit named Zelda, but she died.  We also had fish, but they died.  We used to have two cats, Remedios the Beauty and Clementine, but we gave them to my sister-in-law when I got pregnant with my first child, because I couldn't cope with the smell and the morning sickness.

30. My favourite food is Thai food.

31. My husband and I have a ritual of always going to the same Thai restaurant for our anniversaries.  We always toy with the idea of trying out one of the other restaurants along the same street, but always end up at Thai Siam.  It's just that good.

32. My second favourite food is pizza.

33. My favourite 'date night' activity is Pizza Hut and a movie at the cinema.

34. I have two brothers.

35. I am the middle child.

36. I have serious middle child syndrome.

37. I have three sisters-in-law and two brothers-in-law.  I have two nephews and three nieces.

38. I have a step-mom and a step-dad and numerous step-siblings, most of whom I've not met.  And don't even ask how many step-nieces and nephews there are, I don't even know.

39. My children attend a Gaelic medium school.  This means their entire classroom experience is all in Gaelic, no English.  They will learn to read, write and speak Gaelic before learning to read and write in English.

40. I am very proud of their bilingual education, and proud they are learning their country's native language.

41. My husband is my best friend.  I have other friends (females) who I consider my 'best friends', but I'm too shy about the title 'best friend' to ever actually call any of them my 'best friend' in case they don't feel the same way.  I blame that on fifth grade.  Kids are so cruel.

42. I suppose I hated elementary school.  I still kinda hate some of those kids.

43. Facebook has softened some of my hateful feelings towards my fellow elementary schoolmates.  Not all of them ended up as jerks. (Some did though.)

44. My hobbies change all the time.  But in general I enjoy arts and crafts (cardmaking, sewing, painting), reading, writing (when I find the time) and acting.

45. I did acting in high school.  It was called 'forensics' which isn't the same thing as CSI or Dexter forensics.

46. Speaking of Dexter, it's one of my favourite TV shows.  Along with Scrubs, Glee, How I Met Your Mother and Community.

47. I enjoy amateur dramatics and love being on stage.

48. I can act, and I can sing, but for the life of me, I can't dance.

49. I also can't swim very well.

50. My favourite alcoholic beverage is gin.  Bombay Sapphire especially.  My favourite mixers are fresh cranberry, fresh orange and diet tonic or lemonade.

51. My favourite board games are Scattergories and True Colors.  That is, if those are considered 'board games'.  Neither actually use a board.

52. I believe in gentle parenting and no spanking, but unfortunately I have a quick temper and often fail on both accounts.  But I keep trying.

53. I have a realistic view of myself and am able to forgive myself when I screw up.  But I am still very hard on myself; I want to be the best person I can be, but I accept the fact that I am not she yet.

54. Did you think that last sentence was improper grammar?  It's not.  I am a grammar lover.

55. I adopted British grammar and spelling rules when I moved to Scotland as quickly as I could learn them.

56. My first job was in Little Caesar's Pizza.  I also worked in Pizza Hut.

57. I used to work in a bar while at University, (wo)manning the door.

58. I am now a childminder and a baby signing teacher.

59. I used to be a desktop publisher and graphic designer, but I quit that job when I had Fifi.  

60. All of our children's middle names are named after family members.

61. I used to DJ a couple of radio shows on the University radio station, KXUA 88.3.  I called myself Xia.

62. In high school, I joined as many clubs as possible so I could be in as many club photos in the yearbook as possible.

63. This included math club - even though I was terrible at and hated math - and Japanese club, because it meant I got to go on the annual Japanese club field trip to the Japanese restaurant.

64. I love sock monkeys.

65. I love monkeys in general.

66. I once had a pet pig for all of three hours.  I spent an ungodly amount of money at the town fair trying to win it, but as soon as I brought him home, my mom made me take him back.  Poor Wilbur.

67. I had a pet rat in high school named Squirt.

68. I pet-sat a turtle named Speedy for a couple of years while at University.

69. My roommate at the time did not like when I put Speedy in the bath tub to swim while I cleaned out his tank.  But I didn't like when she left her hair in the bath tub, so it was kind of even.

70. I attend a 'Craft Night' every Tuesday night but most weeks don't do any crafting.  I do a lot of gossiping though.

71. I go to church.

72. I am a Christian who really struggles deeply with being  a Christian.

73. I am of the reformed persuasion when it comes to theology.  It's the only way Christianity can make any sense, even if I don't like it sometimes.

74. I believe in infant baptism (non-salvic) but my husband does not, so we do not baptise our babies.

75. My husband and I are two total opposites, but we agree on almost all of the Big Things, which must be what makes us work so well.

76. I am an extrovert.

77. I like attention.

78. I used to think it was funny to 'moon' anybody and everybody.  Including security cameras.  I was a bit immature back in the day.

79. I still giggle at the word 'sex', so maybe I'm still immature.

80. I do not discount the possibility of ghosts or aliens.

81. I believe in some conspiracy theories.  This is one of those areas in which Scott and I are opposites, and he thinks I'm a hippy.

82. My ideal job would be an editor in a publishing company, or a proof-texter.

83. I use cloth nappies (most of the time).

84. My 'sentimental' favourite band is Tripping Daisy.  My current favourite band is The Decemberists.

85. I used to be in a band called Sharkie.  I think I played about three or four gigs with them before it ended.

86. I was in a fake band called Heart Union, and it was awesome.  We sold merchandise and everything.

87. My favourite colours are green, orange and purple.

88. My favourite colour for decorating the house, however, is red.

89. My favourite colours to wear are black, brown and green.

90. I like football (aka, soccer). 

91. I hate American football.

92. I played basketball in elementary school and was simply awful.  But I did win the 'Most Team Spirit Award', which I knew, even then, meant 'Not Eligible for a Real Award'.

93. I love watching and playing tennis.

94. We do not have TV in our house.  We have a TV but no channels.  We only use it for DVDs.

95. I enjoy baking.  Cooking, however, takes some effort.

96. I am not a jealous wife.

97. I used to work in Hot Topic but ended up quitting because my manager thought I wasn't 'punk enough'.  Newsflash, idiot: You work in Hot
Topic, so neither are you.

98. I was never into punk.  But I went through a techno/rave phase and an indie phase.

99. I still liked the Spice Girls though, and I was not ashamed to admit it.

100. It is my impossible dream to one day visit the moon.

The OLD 100 Things About Me (circa 2006)

1. I was born, raised, educated and married in the state of Arkansas. 

2. I subsequently got the hell outta dodge and now live in the country of Scotland.

3. My 1st grade crush was on the boy who could read really fast.

4. In elementary school, two friends, Greta and Jennifer, and I started a club called The Nutcase Club. We met weekly in the girls' bathroom on Sunday nights after church and recited our Official Club Poem.

5. I used to be a mega-tomboy and refused to play softball. It was baseball all the way.

6. I was on the 6th grade girls' basketball team. I was crap. At the end-of-the-year party, we all received ribbons for "Most Points Scored" or "Best Improved". I won "Best Team Spirit" because I was so crap.

7. I had a pet dog named Bandit who was dog-napped as a puppy.

8. I am a faithful fan of Tripping Daisy.

9. I got into the rock opera RENT back in '97. That means I've loved RENT almost from its inception (1996).

10. In my life I've loved three sports teams: LA Lakers (basketball), NY Mets (baseball) and Glasgow Rangers ("soccer", or rather, football).

11. I've always wanted to collect something. I had an extensive candy wrapper collection in elementary school. I tried to collect Barbies at one point (I have a grand total of two). Now I collect kokeshi. I've got seven at the moment.

12. I did beauty pageants in 11th and 12th grade. For scholarships, people.

13. I also did 'Forensics', or in layman's terms, competitive drama. I was the 2nd Place State Mime champion my senior year. 

14. I really wanted at some point to get a leading role in one of the high school musicals. I never got more prestigious than Riff's girlfriend in West Side Story. Maybe if we'd done the show in mime...

15. I used to be a shift manager at Little Caesar's Pizza.

16. I have seven piercings. I got my first earrings when I was 5, my second set of earrings when I was 16, my left ear cartilage when I was 18, my nose ring when I was 20 and my tragus at 23. At 21 I got a third piercing in my left ear, but have since stopped wearing anything in it.

17. I have two tattoos: one on my foot and one on my back. The foot one is an Arabic calligraphy design that means "faith" and the back one is an Arabic design that means "hope". My third and final one will be Arabic for "love", giving me faith, hope and love, the greatest of the spiritual gifts according to 1 Corinthians 13:13.

18. So yeah, I am a Christian. (Shock! Horror!)

19. I am a Christian who is a Reformed and still reforming credobaptist and cautious non-cessationist with no opinion on the millennium or rapture. And by credobaptist, I mean I just think that's what the Bible says and its not like you're going to hell for baptizing your babies, and by non-cessationist, I mean I don't actually know that one can speak in tongues for ones own benefit, but perhaps one can for someone else's benefit, if tongues are interpreted. And by without opinion on the millennium and rapture, I mean the Left Behind series is such a load of crap.

20. I am really, really interested in theology and believe all Christians should be to some extent.

21. I wear red glasses (currently).

22. I really like cute shoes with kitten heels. 

23. I am 24 (as of today's date, 8 May 2006), and I still wear my high school class ring.

24. I have a degree in English, emphasis in Creative Writing.

25. I had several shows on the University student radio station KXUA 88.3: the Essential Mix (Saturdays, noon-2, I believe), a 2-4am free form show and a 10am-12pm eclectic show. I called myself DJ Xia.

26. I want to be a midwife. I'm planning on going back to school soon to get a midwifery degree.

27. I believe in homebirth.

28. I believe in breastfeeding.

29. I don't necessarily believe in circumcision (except for religious reasons, or of course, medical reasons).

30. I also believe in a woman's right to choose whatever freaking methods of childbirth and parenting she believes is right for her and her family.

31. I can't keep plants alive. 

32. In September 2004 I married the most wonderful, handsome, loving man in the universe, a Scotsman by the name of Scott. Yes, Scott from Scotland.

33. We have two adorable kittens together, Remedios the Beauty and Clementine.

34. Remedios the Beauty is named after a character in Gabriel Garcia Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude.

35. Clementine is named after the character in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

36. Gabriel Garcia Marquez is probably one of my favourite authors of all time.

37. I love the Bronte sisters. They are my favourite authoresses.

38. I love to read.

39. I supposedly write poetry.

40. I have never cheated on anyone or shoplifted.

41. I make friends easily.

42. I just have trouble keeping them.

43. I got my first mobile phone at age 22.

44. I once lost fifteen pounds on WeightWatchers.

45. I have visited nine countries: US, Venezuela, Pakistan, Jordan, Israel, Mexico, Canada, UK and France, in that order. But I plan on visiting many more.

46. I'm afraid of heights, but I'd really like to go on a hot air balloon.

47. I'm terrified of spiders. Like phobia terrified.

48. I also have a fear of burglars, kidnappers and stopped escalators.

49. I used to be afraid of thunderstorms, but now I LUV them.

50. My husband and I spent a total of seven weeks together the entire time we were dating.

51. I break a lot of things on accident.

52. I like Diet Dr Pepper, Mountain Dew and Irn Bru (diet or original).

53. I have a serious problem dieting, because I cannot say no to chocolate or cheese.

54. I once delivered a pizza to Paula Jones. She didn't tip.

55. I worked in a law firm right out of high school and once got to assist in trial, handing the files to the lawyer during his arguments. I kept my own notes of the trial and shared them with the lawyer during a recess. He was so impressed with some of my observations that he actually used one of my points (that he hadn't picked up on himself) in his closing statement.

56. Most of my friends my whole life have been male.

57. I got dumped once for being a virgin.

58. I was a virgin until the night of my wedding. So was my husband.

59. I am completely against the birth control pill. (But I'll let others make up their own minds.)

60. I am not, however, against all contraceptives.

61. I bit my nails incessantly until I was 18. At 18, I decided it simply had to stop. Now I only bite when I'm freaking the heck out about something.

62. I can't really swim. ("I only dog paddle".)

63. So yeah, The Princess Bride is probably my favourite movie ever.

64. Most of the kids hated me from about 4th grade to 9th grade.

65. I hate my ass, legs and arms.

66. I love my eyes, lips and hair.

67. I love old hymns. 

68. I do not so much like modern Praise & Worship songs.

69. I think Christian music generally sucks.

70. I love gin, Bombay Sapphire in particular.

71. I'm not a full-time smoker, but I do enjoy a good fag here and there.

72. My birthday is April Fools Day.

73. I keep in touch with only one of my college roommates (the one who happened to be my best friend beforehand anyway). I had seven altogether.

74. I kinda buy into the conspiracy theories surrounding 9/11.

75. I can't decide which way I lean politically. I think I'd be what they call "a moderate" but that sounds so lame.

76. I love being married. I love my husband. 

77. I love skirts and dresses.

78. I love Rangers.

79. I've never broken any bones except for one of my toes once.

80. When I was about 6, my neighbour Justin and I found a baby bird that had been knocked out of its nest lying on the ground. We tried to nurse it back to health by cracking walnuts and acorns for it to eat. I'm pretty sure the bird didn't make it.

81. I used to have a pet rat named Squirt.

82. I turtle-sat a water turtle named Speedy for about two and a half years for a friend/boyfriend/ex-boyfriend.

83. I have seen Bill Cosby live.

84. I once put a one dollar bill in Har Mar Superstar's underwear at a gig.

85. I've been given a professional lap dance at a strip club (free of charge!).

86. I performed in a band called Sharkie my last year of college. I think I managed about three gigs before the other two guys joined another band, and Sharkie went defunct. 

87. I performed in a band called Oswald's Pool in high school. I think I managed one gig before the drummer pretty much threw me out. (The band didn't last much longer after that anyway, once the bass player got expelled from school and the drummer and guitarist were no longer allowed to hang out with him.)

88. I'm currently growing my hair out.

89. Green is one of my favourite colours even though it is the Celtic colour and I support Rangers.

90. I like painting even though I'm not very good at it.

91. I love my name, Lori. 

92. I was never any good at climbing trees.

93. My favourite vegetable, hands down, is okra.

94. My husband and I have decided that when we get old and one of us is surely close to dying, we are going to take a hot air balloon ride over Africa and jump, and hopefully get eaten by lions.

95. I used to go to raves. I was slipped acid once at a rave, and it was horrifying.

96. I think it is unfortunate that Meg Ryan is so typecast. I think she'd make a really good bad girl.

97. I was obsessed with The Babysitters Club books when I was a kid.

98. I am really interested in cell biology.

99. My husband and I plan to have three kids. I really want two of them to be twins.

100. If I were offered either baby carrots or a packet of crisps, I would honestly take the carrots. But no one ever offers me carrots, so that's why I eat so many packets of crisps.