Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. This week’s topic is “Non-Bookish Hobbies”. I thought this would be a really fun way to get to know each other beyond books!
Travel is one of my favorite things and really something I’ve missed this year being stuck at home. I taught and lived abroad for two years – in Japan and South Korea – and I’ve lived in several US states. It’s been hard not being able to have any big adventures. I’m lucky enough to live just ouside NYC, so I’ve at least been able to take some mini trips in. Do you guys recognize any of these spots?
Crafting is something I’ve always loved – because you don’t necessarily have to be a good traditional artist to produce really great stuff. I was out of work for two months during the pandemic and during that time, I tried experimenting with a lot of different crafts. I did some paper crafts, some needle-felting and worked on a book nook for my shelf (which I still need to finish 😭). It was a fun way to keep occupied and engage the creative part of my brain.
Besides reading, writing is my really great love in life. I’m working on my first novel – a Young adult fantasy – and of course I love to blog! I’ve also written some short stories and poems, which I’ve been submitting to different publications. *fingers crossed*
Scuba-diving is something I always wanted to do, but kind of shied away from as a plus-size person. I never really saw a lot of plus-sized representation in the scuba community, but I’ve always loved the natural world and took the plunge a couple of years ago to get PADI certified. Since then, I’ve dove the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and Phuket in Thailand. I’m really hoping to get back there again – especially as this is a skill that can get rusty over time.
Above is a picture I took of a parrot fish when I dove the Great Barrier Reef. They’re one of my favorite fish because of their brilliant colors. I adjusted the red in this photo because that’s one color you lose at depth.
Sustainability is something I’ve always been interested, but in the last year or two, I’ve really made a lot of changes to become more sustainable. One is trying to move away from one-use plastic. Most of my skin care is now in glass containers. I use shampoo and conditioner bars instead of plastic bottles. I have reusable tumblers, coffee cups and lunch-ware for bringing food and drinks to work. I’ve moved away from single use items – using bamboo circles instead of cotton pads and even a reusable Q-tip.
I was a barista for many years and I love learning about coffee – about its history, ethical growing and different roast profiles. I also love trying new coffee shops – whenever I travel somewhere new I like to find cute local coffee shops to try. I’d love to visit a coffee farm in South America one day to see the drying and roasting process in person.
7. Skin Care.
Especially as I get older, I’m really interested in finding good and sustainable skin-care products. I even made my own lotion, face-wash and face oil for my family one Christmas. If you ever need a skin-care recommendation – particularly for sensitive skin – I’m your girl.
8. Crystal Healing.
Okay, I’ll admit, this one is a little woo-woo, but ever since I started going to yoga classes a couple of years ago, I’ve gotten more and more into crystals. For once, they’re beautiful. It’s really fun to collect different minerals and learn about them. It’s also interesting to learn what you’re drawn to. I have a little altar in my room where I keep my crystals and I like to incorporate them into meditation practices and yoga.
9. My Cat, Momo.
I don’t know if this really counts as a hobby, but I’m pretty much obsessed with my cat. I had a lot of pets growing up – hedgehogs, cats, hamsters, mice, geckos, and fish – and even wanted to be a veterinarian when I was a kid. But because I’ve spent a lot of my adulthood moving around, traveling or in a state of poor mental health where I didn’t trust myself to care for an animal, my cat Momo is pretty much my first adult pet. I’ve been so isolated during the pandemic and she’s been such a bright spot in my life. I love coming home from work and seeing her standing at the top of the stairs waiting for me. I love cuddling with her at night.
10. Abstract Painting.
While I love crafting, I also love the freedom of abstract painting. I especially love doing fluid art of paint pouring. They’re so messy and colorful and you never really know what the finished product is going to look like. While I’m often hindered by perfection in other mediums – like writing – abstract painting really lets me channel and process my raw emotions. I’m part of a trauma support group and we often begin or end our sessions with painting, which brings out some really interesting results.
This was really fun to do and a good break from book blogging. Have any of you done this tag? Do we share any hobbies? Leave me a comment below and…
Until next time,