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Magan: We’re Not Talking About Books Q&A

Estelle and I are swapping questions and getting into the nitty gritty details… Welcome to our “We’re Not Talking About Books Q&A.” Today I’m answering Estelle’s questions and soon she’ll be answering mine. I haven’t even read her questions yet. I’m just copying and pasting them and writing whatever first comes to mind. Are you scared? I kind of am. But let’s get started, shall we?

I feel like you had a good traveling year. What was your favorite trip? Where do you want to try to go next year (a trip with the little one or maybe a romantical trip for two)?

I did! This year feels like such a blur because so, so many things happened, but we got to go on a few trips! First was our trip to DC in February, where we reunited for a little more than 24 hours. That was such a whirlwind trip; it went so fast and we tried to squeeze so many things in, but I loved that there were little moments like you and I taking the time to meet up with Sasha of Sash and Em for dinner. In May we went to Colorado with my family. It was our first trip as parents so that was a wee bit stressful for me and I’m positive we overpacked. I think I took enough diapers for an army. That trip and our August trip to Florida with Dustyn’s family were both very meaningful (and necessary) because this whole foster care process has been so stressful. If I didn’t highlight my hair, I’m certain you’d find a bunch of gray hairs on my head. Those trips really gave us time to escape reality, be a little family, and not focus on all the normal craziness we face on a daily basis.

non-bookish end of year reflections with magan

(Left) Magan (l) and Estelle (r) outside the Newseum in D.C.;
(Right) Magan + Her Husband, Dustyn, on the beach in Cape San Blas, FL

As for next year, we have zero trips planned right now. That seems kind of sad to admit, but there are still so many what-ifs in our lives with our foster daughter and we have Baby Blasig making an appearance in February of next year. I would love to plan a getaway trip with Dustyn at some point, but it would probably be mid-to-late 2014 to who knows where. It won’t even matter, I’m sure. Our 10-year anniversary is in July so hopefully we’ll do something memorable to celebrate!

It might just be because I’m your friend but when I think of you this past year, I feel like (if it’s possible) you’ve become more selfless and have really come into your own as a mom. You’re my first close friend who is a mom so maybe I’m just noticing it more? I don’t know! But I feel like it’s the coolest thing and I’m in total awe of all you do. Is there a change you feel in yourself after the past few months?

Oh, man. Were you intending to make me cry, Estelle? Geez, Louise. *grabs tissues* I definitely feel like I’ve changed a lot this year, but I can’t really pinpoint how I have or even begin to put that into words. I think my priorities have shifted so much. There’s definitely been so much less “me me me” (especially when it comes to spending money and shopping). I feel like almost every time we’ve had a court hearing, we’ve anticipated losing our foster daughter and that’s really taught me the value of time and how precious it can be. I’ve also had to be more gracious and accepting of a lot of situations I never thought I would be faced with. I don’t think I’ve particularly done anything TO change, but my heart and focus have been changed because of her. She’s just taught me so, so much. Especially how to be more patient. I’ve never, ever been a patient person and that’s one thing I’ve been told I am over and over again this year. (I’ve always secretly giggled at that because usually my insides are so anxious.) All of the changes I feel and am experiencing right now, I hope they last and are more than just temporary. You and I have talked a lot about, and I’m holding onto a card forever that you wrote me, about how because of our foster daughter, a lot of good has occurred. My pregnancy might never have happened. I might have stayed so selfishly me-focused, and my eyes certainly wouldn’t have been opened to the entire foster care world.

What do you want more of in 2014 that you didn’t get this year?

It’s funny you mention this because I’ve been thinking about this question a lot lately. I’m never one to make big resolutions at the beginning of a new year, but I am hoping to change my perspective on a few things. Growing up, we never really had a ton of people over to our house besides grandparents. Now isn’t the time or place to discuss why that is, but recently a friend said to me, “I think it’s been a year since I’ve been to your house.” That really, really hit me like a ton of bricks. I’m finding that I love to have people over, but constantly feel self-conscious about the state our house is in (especially now that we have a little person who leaves toys stranded every three feet). One of my biggest hopes is to let those fears reside and to really be more inviting and allow more people into our lives. We do a lot of dinners out or hang out at friends’ houses, but I want to bring that sense of community into our home and not keep people at arm’s length. This answer is probably so much deeper than you were hoping for, but it’s just what’s been on my mind lately.

WHEN ARE WE HANGING OUT AGAIN? (Yes I screamed that.)

As soon as possible. Sadly I’m now in the not-safe-to-fly part of my pregnancy, but soon you’ll have a little Blasig to meet! And I really do want to visit NYC again soon. I feel like no matter how many times I go there, I’ll always find something new to see and experience.

Do you think we will get more Zac Efron next year? Because… I’m seriously disappointed in his life choices and lack of movies in my theater. What are we going to do with him?

I sincerely hope so. And hopefully our clean-cut Zac will return and there will be no more press releases about his rehab stays. (Has anyone else been as deeply disappointed with him as we have?) We haven’t seen nearly as many movies this year as we have in the past, and I’m sure Dustyn is oh-so-thankful for less of Zac’s smoldering physique, but come on! WE NEED MORE ZAC!

Can you share one of your favorite pics from the year?

Of course I can! This photo is from our Florida vacation where I seriously wished I had carried my camera everywhere we went. This is an iPhone photo of a boat floating by right by where we stopped to eat that evening. I don’t remember the food or what I ordered. I don’t remember the name of the restaurant, but I do remember the peacefulness of this moment and how absolutely beautiful the sky was.

magan

The most fun moment you had this year?

Goodness gracious. I know this may sound like a cop-out answer, but honestly, every moment you and I had together was so awesome. I wish that could happen way more often than it does. Talking/texting/chatting just isn’t enough. Aside from our gushy friendship, I loved finding out that we were expecting our first baby and telling our grandparents all about it at a surprise lunch. We had them all arrive at the same restaurant together. I made little boxes with scratch off tickets that told them we were expecting (which shocked them because everyone suspected maybe we had big foster daughter news to share). I also included one of our ultrasound photographs in frames for them and personal notes to each one of them about how excited we are for them to meet Baby Irmagerd. I also gained a new appreciation for my job this year that gave me a different perspective on why I love being a photographer; the bride from my last wedding of the year sent me an email on behalf of one of their groomsmen who wanted to know if my assistant that day was single. That’s pretty priceless!

And the best buy of 2013? (I’m sure there were many of them.)

You’re catching me on a day when I’ve just splurged on something super fun for myself. I bought the new Urban Decay Naked 3 palette, and ohemgee is it beautiful. (For those who aren’t aware, Estelle and I are make-up junkies, too.) When I was excitedly doing my make-up this morning, I couldn’t even begin to pick out which colors to use first. They’re all so beautiful! If you are a make-up-aholic, you need this in your life.

With just a few days left until Christmas, what’s a stand out memory from the holiday that you have?

Growing up, my maternal grandparents would always come over to our house to help us put up the Christmas tree. It was never planned and happened spur-of-the-moment, but I remember them always being there. This year, with baby girl in our house, Dustyn and I put the tree up pretty early so she’d have a long while to experience the lights and ornaments. We were initially having the problem of her going to the tree and taking (i.e.: yanking) all the bottom ornaments off. One day my grandma and mom came to Austin to hang out with us. We made a trip to Michael’s and my grandma mentioned wanting to get baby girl her own Christmas ornament. Baby girl chose a sparkly snowman with silly arms and legs. When we got back to our house, grandma unwrapped the ornament and let baby girl put it on the tree. Every single morning, one of the first things she does is run to our tree, find her snowman, and bend down to give him a kiss. I swear it’s the cutest thing in the entire world; she sporadically checks on him throughout the day, too. These two memories are so special because it’s essentially the meshing of my childhood with hers and having my grandma be so integral to both.

Stay tuned for Estelle’s answers to my questions!
Tell us your answers to any of the above questions…
We always want to get to know you guys better, too!

January 7, 2014 - 12:01 am

Top Ten Tuesday: Let's Talk 2014 Resolutions, Magan - […] guys… I’m worn out. And no, that’s not just the pregnancy talking. I mentioned in my Q&A with Estelle that I’d like to be more welcoming and have people over more often. Maybe these two concepts […]

December 29, 2013 - 10:50 am

Bookworm1858 - Such a fun idea to share more of the personality behind the blog. I’m super late obviously but I look forward to checking out Estelle’s shortly.

December 26, 2013 - 9:00 am

Estelle: We're Not Talking About Books Q&A, Estelle - […] Good morning, friends!  Today I’m answering some questions that Magan sent me a few days ago. I hope you’ve enjoyed this series so far! It’s been so fun to reflect on the past year together and share it with you. (If you misses Magan’s Q&A, here it is!) […]

December 22, 2013 - 1:55 am

Liz - I love reading this interview! Magan, I feel so lucky to have gotten to see how you and your family have changed in 2013. I’m really excited for you to have your baby. And I like how you talk about wanting to let people in more! That’s something I’ve found myself mulling over a great deal this year.

On a lighter note, I also recently got Naked 3 and it’s been a great purchase.

I’m looking forward to seeing what 2014 brings for you!

December 20, 2013 - 7:48 pm

Alexa Y. - I loved reading your answers to E’s questions, M! It’s such a beautiful way to get to know you a little better, and to see how 2013 has changed and shaped you. Even with all your ups and downs, I also know that it’s been a crazy wonderful year for you. I’m honored to know you and be your friend, just because you’re a wonderful person with a genuinely good, caring heart and it shows so clearly how much you value family, friends and life in this post. Love it and love YOU!

December 19, 2013 - 8:58 pm

Melissa @ Writer Grrl Reads - Omigoodness, there are no words for how much I loved reading this! Magan, you made me tear up a few times, especially at the end with baby girl kissing the snowman — too freakin’ cute!

December 19, 2013 - 7:54 pm

Christina - I love the Naked 3 too!

December 19, 2013 - 11:53 am

Lisa Schensted - I would like to second Magan growing into motherhood as an incredible thing to witness and I absolutely adored every moment of it (and will continue to do so).

I love you both to the moon and back!

oxoxoxoxoxo

December 18, 2013 - 9:55 pm

Ellie - I just splurged on the Naked 3 Palette too! So in love with it.

December 18, 2013 - 3:16 pm

Meg - Loved reading this! You ladies are awesome. 🙂 And I love that Florida shot! We don’t have our travel plans locked down for next year, either, but I definitely need to plan a vacation somewhere . . . . this year was consumed by wedding chaos, but all bets are off in 2014!

December 18, 2013 - 3:06 pm

Tiff @ Mostly YA Lit - Love this series. GREAT read – you both seem like such awesome people, it’s wonderful to get to know you better.

Magan, I am the worst about letting people into my home. My husband is great at it and unashamed of our sometimes untidy place, but I feel like the worst hostess when my place looks like crap, so I know what you’re feeling. I’m going to try to be better at it next year, too, because you’re right, bringing a sense of community into your home is important.

On a lighter note, I feel the same sad way about Zefron. Rehab for coke? Yikes. And we definitely need better movies from him…”That Awkward Moment”? REALLY? =p

December 18, 2013 - 9:58 am

alice-jane - I love the new Q&A series that you’re doing! It’s so nice to get to know bloggers not only through what books they like but also through personal posts like this! The iPhone boat picture is gorgeous, too.

All the memories that you’ve shared are so precious and I hope you have a great 2014 as well! 🙂

December 18, 2013 - 9:45 am

Quinn @ Quinn's Book Nook - Wow, Magan, it seems like you’ve had a very busy, but good, year. As for the UD Naked 3 Palette – I just got that as well. It’s so pretty, and I think my favorite of all the Naked Palettes. So good to talk to another makeup addict.

December 18, 2013 - 9:28 am

Ginger @ GReads! - First of all, I LOVE this Q&A thing y’all got started. It’s nice to see personal posts on book blogs (something I am trying to do more of too).

Magan, I love that picture from Florida. I remember admiring your trip while y’all were there through your Instagram pics & thinking, wow! I need to visit this place. Also, that last question about the ornament and your grandmother: PRECIOUS. That’s definitely a keepsake to hold in your heart forever. I agree with Estelle that you’ve definitely evolved into this beautiful, selfless person. You inspire me, constantly.

PS – LOVE that tidbit about the groomsmen asking if your assistant was single, hehe.

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