Outside of my faith, it is not easy for me to talk about myself... Because, in part, there's a lot of crazy little picadillos to talk about here and there, and in part because I really like getting to know others more than talking about myself. So, instead, I decided to list a few random pieces of trivia about me in hopes that it will help you "get me" a bit better:
•I was raised by three women (my mom, grandma and aunt) and wouldn't have had it any other way. Never felt unloved. Great ladies!
•I have had the same best friends for 28, 23, and 14 years... When I find good people surrounding me, I tend to bend over backwards to keep them in my life.
•I love Kansas (especially Lawrence) and all Kansas Division I NCAA basketball teams (Jayhawks, Wildcats, Shockers).
•I root for my KU Jayhawks ALL the time, but during during football season it gets tough because recently (see: the last 20 years) we haven't been so good. So, I tend to follow the KSU Wildcats with equal fervor when it comes to football (unless they play my Hawks, then I watch my boys in blue get stomped, usually. But, I cheer for em, doggone it!!)
•Mongolian BBQ is my favorite food and I LOVE BD's Mongolian Grill. I wish we had one here in Lawrence. We DID get a HuHot which is pretty close to BD's quality... But, not quite.
•In fact, Asian food is my favorite food type... Outside of good Mongolian BBQ, I am also a huge fan of Thai cuisine and sushi. I could LITERALLY eat Asian any time... All the time... If only I could afford it! 😂
•I can cook... Not Chef-quality or anything, but I know my way around a kitchen. I like mixing spices and sauces to see what tastes good. I also make a GREAT slow cooker chili during the winter months... Although, I sometimes spice it up to my preference and then I'm usually the only one eating it. Haha!
•My brain is chock full of useless information, so, sometimes, I play live team trivia with friends. We used to do it every week... But, now most of them are married and have turned boring. So, I'm looking for a new partner... As long as we don't turn boring together.
•I make jokes that most of my friends roll their eyes at, but I think I'm darn funny!! Naturally, I laugh no matter what. So, that's at least one person laughing at my jokes every time... Wanna be the second? Haha! (See... Now roll your eyes... I'm used to it... It's all good.) ;)
Ohhhh... That's probably good for now. If we get this thing rollin, you and I, I will bring some more random facts about myself on the date in exchange for the same from you! ;)
I received my Bachelor of Arts in Political Science in 2014 and have helped out a few local/state campaigns since then. Currently I am helping to head up a union that we are starting for paraeducators in our district. It is tough work and a whole lot of time commitments and a lot of talking to paraeducators in the district and helping them determine if the union is a good choice for them and what we can do, together, to better the pay, benefits, and quality of paraeducator in our district, if we band together.
I'd like to, in the next 2-3 years, run for local office (or potentially state representative/senator) once I feel like I have a good grasp on what the task entails and whether I can really benefit the people I'd be serving. The last thing I want to do is "serve" my community and fail to serve them well. We've seen too much of that on every level of politics. I refuse to be a part of that.
I have a passion for ministry and attend the Wesleyan Church in Lawrence and love working with the youth group, which I have worked with since 2000. I have had the honor of serving on the church board in the past. It was an exciting experience being part of the core leadership of our church during such an exciting time in the church's ministry. I still continue my role in youth group and volunteer here and there around the church. I will, without a doubt, be involved in ministry for the rest of my life in some capacity... I can't picture my life without it.
*I'm passionate about serving others. Right now I do that through ministry at my church and my job as a paraeducator in the schools. I'd like to serve my community more broadly in the future by running for local or state office in the near future, as well. I think what helps me to serve others well is my ability to listen to others, gain perspective of their problems, gather together resources that would help them, then helping them move toward those resources and help empower them to move toward self-sufficiency and self-realization.
*I'm passionate about showing people love... All people. Some people naturally have a lot of love (from family, from friends, from their church, from their coworkers, etc.) And that's fantastic! I want to show love to them, too. But, what I'm REALLY passionate about is showing love to those society has deemed "unlovable". If people pass by someone a million times... That's the someone I want to buy lunch for and talk to for a couple hours.
*I'm passionate about writing. Sometimes short stories. Sometimes letters. Sometimes ridiculously long dating profiles. But, mostly, poetry. I think it's a lost art form. I love the colors it paints with words and the way it sparks the imagination. I, likewise, love reading poetry as well... For very much the same reasons.
Movie: "Good Will Hunting" is definitely my favorite... Then I have a TON of others that follow closely behind. My favorite genres are: Musicals, Superhero Action, and all things Comedy (how's that for variety?) I am also a bit of a documentary nerd. Don't worry... I won't subject you to that unless you are one as well... But, I will have to sneak away to my laptop and indulge in my documentary obsession from time to time, I'm afraid.
Music: I don't really have a specific type of music that I stick to... My interests vary from classic rock to classical and from praise and worship to 80's music. I suppose my favorite music, however, is jazz and the vocal standards like Nat King Cole and Frank Sinatra. More specifically, I love the era in jazz called "Hard Bop" when it comes to instrumental jazz, which includes great musicians like Mike's Davis, Dave Brubec, John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, and Cannonball Adderly (just to name a few...)
Also, amazingly (and it is amazing if you knew me.) I'm slowly starting to enjoy country music more and more... I don't know how to feel about that...
Food: I think a good slice of pizza with a Diet Coke is one of the greatest pleasures in life. (I have cut soft drinks out of many areas of my life... But, a slice of pizza without a fizzy drink of some sort is just not acceptable.) Beyond that, my favorite food is really Mongolian BBQ, with Thai and Sushi right behind that. I really dig pretty much anything of the Asian variety. I have been trying to eat healthier and this has put a damper on a great deal of things I used to enjoy. But, it is a lifestyle change that needed to be done and that I'm excited to make... Plus, I am finding new things every day that make the effort more tolerable. Can you believe I actually LOVE grilled vegetables?? Have you ever tried grilled beets????? HOLY COW!
Seriously, though... My life is pretty much an open book. I have tried very hard to live a life that I have no regrets in and very little to be ashamed of.