In no particular order. . .

1.  Ardmore, Oklahoma:

Where I was born and raised, and it will always be a part of me.   We swam in lakes, went to football games, built homecoming floats, hung out at the Sonic Drive-In, ate buttermilk pie at Hamburger Inn, and attended church.  But we also had a good public school and a surprisingly robust arts community.  I’m thankful for the community of kind and funny folks who raised me and loved me there, and the influences I will always carry from southern Oklahoma.

The Hill Family, sporting their glasses and tinker toys: Julie Hill, Gene Hill, Laura Hill (me), Martha Ann Hill and Steve Hill. About 1969.
My sister Julie and I, about 1966.

Two crazy facts about Ardmore, Ok:  (1) John Hinckley, Jr., who shot President Reagan in 1980, was born in Ardmore, and my grandparents bought and lived in his house after the family moved.  (2)  The screenwriter for the movie “Footloose” based the movie on his time in Ardmore — at least the way we spoke, dressed, and lived.  Red cowboy boots rock.

2.  Nashville, Austin, San Francisco, Pasadena, Cincinnati

Awesome places I’ve lived since my childhood.  I currently live in Mason, Ohio, a suburb of Cincinnati.

3.  Vito’s Spaghetti and Meatballs

My favorite meal, and the reason I married my husband.  OK, one of many reasons, but it’s up at the top of the list.

Laura and Vito
Vito and I after nearly 25 years of spaghetti and meatballs.

4.  Bo and Lizzie

My two dogs.  Bo the Schnoodle and Lizzie the Goldendoodle.

5.  Books

I’m a reader.  I majored in English (Vanderbilt University), went to law school (University of Texas School of Law) and practiced law.  Since leaving the practice of law to raise kids and have some fun, I always have my Kindle with me.  I read mostly fiction, with an occasional non-fiction or bible study thrown in.

6.  Food and Wine

If there was a slide-show of the greatest moments in my life, so many of them would include memories of food and wine:  a lovely picnic at a Napa winery, Thanksgiving dinner with my husband’s signature turkey and dressing, New Years Eve feasts shared with Kalisa’s family, Skyline chili with my son, Christmas Day meals with my Oklahoma family, tacos with my daughter. . .

Laura and her mom cooking Christmas Eve
Christmas Eve dinner
Friends at Saintsbury winery
Napa Valley winery, with a great group of friends
Laura and Vito at Terra Valentine winery
Wine and food tasting, Terra Valentine winery, on a trip with Fred and Kalisa

7.  God

The source of  my many blessings.  I hope to humbly serve Him.

8.  Cilantro

Love it.

9.  A Husband and Two Kids

I married a guy who makes me laugh, who has my back, and who has given me a wonderful life.  I have two amazing kids, both in college.  My time raising my kids was the most fun I’ve ever had, and was my highest use. Sending them to college was simultaneously delightful and devastating.

10.  A Transitional-Nester

I hate the term “empty-nester.”  I don’t want to define my life as empty.  While my nest was more full a year ago, I choose to see it as transitional now, rather than empty.  Life can still be vibrant and beautiful, even after the passage of one fabulous phase of life.  Now, on to the next fabulous phase.

For more about Kalisa, please see Ten Facts About Kalisa.  For facts about our friendship, please see Kalisa and Laura.  And for the reason we started this blog, and chose the name “two dandelions,” please see Why “two dandelions”?

What are your thoughts?

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