TTT – Talents

It’s Top Ten Thursday again! This week we’re talking about talents… and clearly, being consistent and sticking with things will not be on my list!


Let’s see what did make the list (in no particular order)…

1. Reading
Reading has always been a favorite pastime of mine. As a kid, I can remember being sent to my room to clean it (because it was always a mess) and getting in trouble later in the day because I started cleaning, found a book, and then just read the rest of the time instead of doing what I was supposed to.
I don’t get to spend as much time reading my own books as I used to (working, going to school, and now being a parent tend to eat up your potential reading time), but I spend some of every day reading to G. And I’m trying very hard to spend more time reading “real” books (on my Kindle) instead of just consuming the Internet.
Currently reading: The Summer Guest by Alison Anderson along with Walking on Mom

2. Editing
…But not my own work. I have an eye for punctuation and when things are spelled wrong (although I may not know exactly how to spell it correctly). Reading on the Internet can make me twitchy. When I was in school, I always edited our group papers because I didn’t trust anyone else to do it.
However, I have a real knack for sending out a tweet, email, cover letter… and then finding a typo. It’s so much harder to edit your own words!

3. Baking
I love to bake. Cookies, selected pies… and cake. Although I prefer cupcakes, to be honest. That’s partially because the decorating necessary on cupcakes just isn’t as extensive, but it’s also because I just think they’re adorable. It’s also easier to break complex flavors down into components and put them all in a single bite of cupcake than a single bite of cake.
I’ve taken a few decorating classes and I have some skill there, but I love the baking more and that’s definitely more where my talent lies.

For those of you playing along at home, I’ll be baking these cupcakes for the IWI Basel Bake Off this weekend. Fingers crossed it goes better than last time 🙂


4. Along the same lines – Making ice cream
One of the gifts I bought myself with graduation money was a KitchenAid ice cream maker attachment for my stand mixer. I spent a few blissful months making small batches of homemade ice cream, totally taking my ample freezer room for granted. My mixer and the ice cream maker both came with me to Switzerland, but we’re going to have to invest in an additional freezer before I can actually make any ice cream. The bowl is bigger than the freezer we have.


5. Empathy
I am highly sensitive and this translates very well to being able to read someone else’s frame of mind and put myself in their shoes. (To an extent.) This serves me well most of the time, but it can also get overwhelming at times!

6. Binge watching TV
Like, seriously, I wish I could just get paid for this because I’d be totally ballin’.

7. Self-deprecation
See above.

8. Procrastination
I am excellent at putting things off. Have a paper to write? Better clean the house. Have cleaning to do? Better fold this laundry. Have clothes to wash? I just need to finish reading this (series of) article(s).
Professionally, I always made this work for me. I’m great at prioritizing and I perform well under pressure, so I would determine what needed to be done and set (artificial) deadlines for myself. Everything would get done. It wouldn’t be late. Only my blood pressure had to pay the price.

9. Managing social media
Once upon a time, I had a LiveJournal. I had a Friendster. A MySpace. Now, I have this blog. A Facebook; two, actually. A Twitter. A Google+. LinkedIn. Xing. Pinterest. Instagram. Snapchat, of course.
I don’t use them all regularly, but I do use them all. I love social media. I love studying the way it works, how news travels, what people share… and the data. I love me some social media analytics.
For a brief time last year, I had a freelance job writing social media for various companies. I loved it. I had to research their niche, study their voice, and craft posts for their social media accounts.
Real talk, I wish I could still get paid for something like that. I really wish my university had offered a degree, or at least a minor, in social media marketing because I think I could have knocked that out of the park.

10. Braiding hair
I’ve never been good at styling my own hair. On any given day, you’ll probably see me with it in a disheveled ponytail and maybe an Adidas hat covering my roots.

And when we were in Peoria, I didn’t think I’d ever have to worry about doing G’s hair. My sister-in-law is a stylist, and she’s really good. What more could a kid ask for?
Well, we moved here and G wanted her hair to be long and I didn’t want to have to fight the tangles every day, so I’ve had to get creative. It’s not perfect. Sometimes I’ll braid her hair and leave it for two days because it’s easy and we’re usually rushed in the morning. But I’ve come a long way.

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Cutest hair. #lavieve

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G’s first braided pigtails.

G’s first French braids. (She calls them princess braids.)

Rope braiding – So easy, I can actually do this to my own hair!

Her braids lately have been Khaleesiesque, with several small braids being tied together in the back. It’s quick and keeps her hair out of her face, so I’m a definite fan. (If only I could trust myself to trim her bangs because they grow so darned fast!)

Be sure to check out these other talented bloggers!

10 thoughts on “TTT – Talents

  1. You would rather clean the house than write a paper???
    Love G’s princess braids. Oh, and the CUPCAKES! I am no good with buttercream. At all.
    I’m pretty sure “Social Media” is going to be a thing you’ll be able to take actual courses and get credits. I also think we should be paid to be doing it.
    Exactly HOW LARGE is your ice cream maker? 😂

    • If the paper is required, yes. If I needed to clean, though, I would surely rather write.
      There are some universities in the US offering social media courses; mine just wasn’t one of them. Unfortunately for me!
      It’s not that big, but my freezer is only the size of a shoe box! I miss my American-sized fridge and freezer 😂

  2. Sooooo…. I was SO close to putting editing on my list!! I also almost put binge watching TV!! I don’t get to do it often, but darn am I good at it.
    Reading and empathy!!! Yay.
    I can relate so much to your list!!! I absolutely love it!!! Thanks for sharing!!!

  3. Love, love, love Jeni’s Ice Cream! I have that book too! But how in the world do you get the Kitchenaid Ice Cream attachment to work? My husband, who is actually very good at cooking AND an engineer, just cannot get his ice cream to cool down quick enough when we use it. It’s super frustrating! He’s ended up resorting to some what we’ll call “scientific methods” of using dry ice and alcohol to get the consistency we are after. Unfortunately, due to the nature of those “methods” we rarely make ice cream, which is a sad for me, because I LOVE ice cream!

    Also super jealous of those cupcake making skills. They look yummy! 🙂

    G looks adorable with those braids. 🙂 I especially love the Frozen style.

    Thanks for adding my blog to your list of participating #TopTenChallenge-ers! 🙂

    • Keys to making the attachment work:
      1. Freeze it for AT LEAST 24 hours before you need it. We had an extra chest freezer in the basement back in the US and I just stored the bowl in there all the time.
      2. Make sure your ice cream mix is nice and chilly before you get ready to churn.
      3. Quickly transfer the bowl from the freezer to the stand mixer.
      4. Start it churning on level 1 (max speed for ice cream making).
      5. Pour in the mix.

      Depending on the ice cream type, you may end up with slightly soupy ice cream at the end, but ideally it will be soft serve texture. You can just transfer to a freezer-safe container and firm it up in the freezer!

      I only had a couple of failed batches. I hope this helps!

      Thank you for stopping by 🙂

  4. I could have almost written the same list for myself! Except ice-cream making. And it’s been a loooong time since I’ve done any braiding… I used to have some minor skillz there tho… ha ha!

  5. Hmm… Thanks for the detailed response to my comment. We have kept the attachment in the freezer for 24 hours +, but I wonder if our freezer isn’t cold enough? Of course, it’s good to know that it might come out looking “soupy” and not frozen. With other ice cream makers, the end result is more solid, so that might be what’s confusing us. I guess we’ll just have to try, try again. There’s nothing wrong with having a little extra ice cream in the house though! 🙂

  6. Great list and has inspired me to try making icecream as it’s something I’ve always wanted to do but keep putting it off (think I might be quite good at procrastination as well). My nanna used to make icecream for me when I was little and I love it much more than the bought type. I should definitely get paid for binge watching tv and could spend days at it if it’s a series I love.

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