Monday, January 01, 2007

My Story

I’m Mandy and hail from a small town, along the Ohio river, nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian mountains. I'm currently a small town girl with big city hopes and dreams, searching for a way to escape my little valley for a bigger life. I tend to live life at a slower pace than most people; doing things in my own time, in my own way (also known as pure stubbornness).  My greatest joys come from the simple things in life – spending time with family and friends, watching the sun sink behind the hills, or reading on a grassy hillside.

I’m freakishly linked to my mom, who named me after a Barry Manilow song which has led to a life long unrequited love to the man who “writes the songs.” I’m seriously the only person I know of who, at my age, owns most of his discography and has seen him numerous times in concert. If you should ever take a road trip me, consider yourself warned; there will be Barry Manilow tunes and lots of them. Road tripping is one of my favorite things to do in the warmer months because it usually leads me to my out of town friends.

I take immense comfort in reading, writing, and my Kitchen Aid mixer (which is possibly the best investment I’ve ever made beyond my college education). I can usually be found carrying around a book, a journal, and some sort of recipe. Reading has always been a way of life and writing always my therapy. Writing is the way I best express my thoughts, feelings, and desires. It allows me to empty the chaos of my thoughts and think a little more clearly, which is why I blog.

I firmly believe that bonfires (a typical weekend event) and beer (Yuengling, please) go together. I spend a great deal of my summers with friends at outdoor concerts or enjoying the evenings on a deck or patio talking long after night has fallen. I’m loyal to a fault, fiercely protective of those I love, and will most likely answer the phone if you call at 3 am. I wish life had background music like the movies, that I knew how to read (and fold) a map, and could properly use a ruler. Since I can’t do any of those things I almost always have music playing, rely entirely too much on my GPS, and refrain from anything that requires me to give a measurement.

I often crave solitude, heading into nature to find it. Being out in a field, walking amongst the trees, or watching life in my small town unfold from the top of a hill, with only my dog for company, is where I find both balance and peace. It’s also where I gather my strength, do some of my best writing, and can spend hours of time lost in my own thoughts.

I have a soft spot in my heart for musical theater. As a child I was involved with a singing, dancing, and acting group which was a much needed creative outlet for me. I also spent my early teenage years taking part in local theater productions. I’ve been known to randomly bust out a Broadway tune or quote some overly dramatic line from a film or play, usually at a completely inappropriate time. Supporting the arts is one of my favorite causes, as is, animal rescue.

My golden retriever, Sandy, is from a rescue and you will have a hard time convincing me that one should acquire a pet any other way. Sandy has a better personality than some people I know, doesn’t realize that she is indeed a dog, and makes appearances on my blog from time to time in ridiculous accessories that she loves (no, really, she does).

I have a great fondness for long dangly earrings, brightly colored scarves, and driving with the windows down while the music blares loudly. My weaknesses include distinguished looking older gentlemen, chocolate raspberry chai, and pink catawba wine. I find it incredibly daunting to write things like this, so if there’s anything you’re wondering or I’ve left out, please don’t hesitate to ask. My email is mandy.smalltowngirl@gmail.com or I am also a big fan of old fashioned letters and cards.