A few weeks ago I put a questions box on Instagram and said “Ask me anything!” I love reading these kinds of posts from other people with a mix of topics!

Do you have any plans for your birthday this year? (40?)

I’m reading this question as “Do you have plans for your birthday this year when you turn 39 or the year you turn 40” 😆 I don’t have plans yet, but I am planning a trip with some girlfriends for the fall (we’ll all be vaccinated!) and it might end up being a birthday trip. No plans for a big party at 40!

What’s your ennegram?

I’m a 3!!! (Did you guess right?) I actually have a post coming up about personality types. Try to guess my other ones (Myers Brigs, 4 Tendencies, etc). 

I love your finance related posts. Maybe something about how you’re saving for retirement?

When I was 22 and started working full time I didn’t want to think about retirement because it seemed SO FAR AWAY. I didn’t even know what career I’d be in or what life would look like. I still set up a 401k at my first job and contributed to Roth because I knew it was the “right thing to do.”

While I still don’t really know the where or when of actual retirement, now that I’m 40 I feel that much closer – lol. I believe in a “slow and steady wins the race” mindset but also the more you dump into your accounts, the faster you’ll be able to reach financial freedom where you get to decide what retirements looks like rather than your age or situation deciding for you. That’s ultimately what I’m chasing – the freedom to choose. We’ve been saving aggressively for a while now in a mix of different accounts: a SEP IRA for me, SIMPLE and Traditional IRAs for T, and Roths the years we are eligible. 

Will Birch and Mazen have any more siblings? Human or fur?

When Thomas and I met he wanted to have 2 more children, and I was perfectly happy with one. I reminded him he hadn’t experienced age 0-3.5 yet and might change his mind.

One night recently both kids were crying and we were overwhelmed, and he looked at me and said: “You were right.” HA! While I love the idea of having another baby because babies are so cute, I am perfectly happy with two kids – especially since Birch is almost old enough to do all the fun kid things!

I feel the same way about having one dog at a time, so hopefully we won’t be getting a new one for many more years. 

What do you guys plan to do with social media and smart phones for Mazen?

I think phones for kids are great because of all the benefits that they bring, so I am pro technology in general. We have an iPad with Facetime, Facebook Messenger for Kids, and some games. He also has a Gizmo Watch that can text and call that we love for him to wear when he’s given a little freedom in the neighborhood and things. 

I think when he’s a little older and more responsible, an old school phone that can only text and call is probably what we’ll do. Definitely not handing him an iPhone at age 12 with all the apps loaded on. I think if we had a really trustworthy child we might 🙂 

I’m also banking on there being a new smart phone made for kids that comes out in the next 4-5 years. Something like the Kindle Kids Edition where it has basic features but built-in parental controls like the way Facebook Messenger is set up. (Does this exist yet?!) 

I really don’t know about social media yet, but I’m all for parental controls until they are waaaaay old.

Favorite OG food blog that doesn’t exist anymore?

RIP Healthy Tipping Point! I’m still friends with C and we’ve gotten together over the years <3 

Do you think you guys will ever move from Cville?

Fun question! I don’t think we will move until are kids are grown, if we do. With Thomas’s family all here and many of his life-long friends, plus the business he has built I don’t think we’d want to leave. (Also sharing time with Mazen with his dad would pose a problem.)

I DO think if we have a grown child who moves to a coastal spot (y’all know I love the beach) we could move to be near that said child. I also really want to be a snowbird when I’m older and spend winters in a warm place! 

What’s your best marriage advice?

I have a post on marriage coming soon! I think my best advice is to choose your battles and play to your strengths and help them play to theirs.

Simple example: I am more the home organizer and decorator, so Thomas lets me get away with stuff inside that he might otherwise have opinions on and he’s the outdoor loving gardener so I let him call the shots outside.

Do you have any vices or things that get you unglued? You’re always so together!

OMG yes. 99% of the time they are things I just can’t share publicly! Issues with friendships, parenting challenges, rude troll comments (my skin is much thicker now, but sometimes I have a fit with myself because I want to reply but I don’t).

Also: the need for change surrounding gun control, Black Lives Matter, so much frustrating things in the news. I’ve been arguing with an old friend from high school on Instagram who doesn’t “believe” in systemic racism and thinks everyone should have access to an automatic machine gun in their house. DRIVES ME NUTS. I finally had to disengage. 

Are you getting (or have you gotten) the vaccine?

YES! I got my second dose of Pfizer yesterday! So very thankful for all the science and research that made it possible. I really hope this is the beginning of the end to this pandemic. 

That was fun. That’s all for today!

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