Meet and Greet Tuesday

It’s Tuesday, friends!

Today I had the chance to interview Tanya from The Other Side of the Road blog.  I look up to her so much as a blogger and love following her!

It was fun to get to know her better through these questions.  Here is what she had to say:

Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hi y’all!  My name is Tanya, and I blog over at The Other Side of the Road. I’ve been married to Michael for 19 years, and we have two teens.  Grace will be moving out to go to college this year, and Jack will be in 11th grade.  We live in Texas, and I enjoy reading, blogging, gardening, volunteering, travel and cooking.  Before becoming a stay-at-home mom, I taught high school science for 10 years.
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How long have you been blogging and what inspired you to start blogging?
I started blogging around the year 2000 using Geocities.  Anyone else remember that platform?  I started using Blogger in 2004, mainly as a family scrapbook.  Around 2008, I began doing blog posts other than family updates and started a recipe blog.  I started blogging to share family memories, but stayed around for the wonderful community of online friends that I found.  I love connecting with blog buddies.  I think it’s such a unique way to meet people from other areas and in other stages of their lives.
How did you come up with the name of your blog?
Originally, my blog name was Ladybug and Honeybear.  These were my nicknames for the kids when they were little.  They were getting older, and we were getting ready to move to England in 2011.  I asked the family for suggestions on a new blog name, and Grace said “The Other Side of the Road!”  Even though we don’t live where they drive on the other side of the road anymore, the blog name makes me think about travel and adventure.
 
Of all your posts you have written, which is your favorite and why?
One of my favorite posts is the story of how Michael and I met (You’ve Got Mail), since I consider it a true miracle in my life.  I was 31 and had just about given up on meeting Mr. Right.  I decided to try something crazy called Yahoo Personals, and I’ll let you click on the link to read the rest.  In today’s world, meeting online is no big deal, but back in 1999, I was embarrassed to tell anyone I was trying it.  Needless to say, it worked out really well!  Another post that I wouldn’t really list as a favorite, but it’s important because it was such a life-changing event for us was Hurricane Harvey.  In 2017, our home flooded with 18″ of water during Harvey, and the water stayed there for over a week.  It taught me so many lessons about what’s really important in life and having strength to get through something when you don’t think you’ll be able to.
 
You need some encouragement.  Who is your go to person for a little pick me up?
Michael is definitely my best friend and biggest encourager.  I’m also really close with my aunt, and I can count on a quick phone call with her to boost me up and give me some perspective.
 
You have friends coming over to dinner tomorrow night.  What are you going to make for a meal?
I would pick something simple and fun like fajitas or burgers.  If I’m in more of a “cozy” mood, I’d pick a casserole like chicken spaghetti or enchiladas.
 
What is your favorite dessert recipe?
Our son Jack really enjoys baking, and he’s made lots of cookies and treats in the past few years.  Some of my favorites are French Silk Pie, apple pie, and classic chocolate chip cookies.  You can see all my recipes here. 
 
You are planning an evening out.  What’s your favorite go-to restaurant for a fun time?
Any Mexican restaurant would be fun!
If you could have a weekend away, just you and your husband, where would you go?
Ok, let’s just pretend that Covid isn’t around anymore!  If we were driving, I’d love to head out to the Texas hill country.  If we were flying, I’d hop down to a beach in Mexico or Florida.  The beach is my happy place!
 
What are some pet peeves of yours, and why?
I tend to be a rule-follower, so a pet peeve is when people don’t follow the rules, respect others, or honor our country.
 
What’s your go to type of music?
A little bit of everything.  I think I’ve had a phase in life for each style of music.  Heavy metal/classic rock in my teens, country in my 20s, pop in my 30’s, etc.  Now I listen to all that plus a mix of Christian music, classic crooners, and 70’s “lite rock.”  I “shuffle” my stations on Pandora.
 
What’s your idea of the perfect family day?  
Now that the kids are older and closer to leaving the nest, I really cherish our time together.  I think we would all say that our favorite family time is when we travel.  (You can check out all our trips here.)  If we’re at home, it would be swimming, going to a movie (when we still could), and going out to eat.
 
Has living through a pandemic taught you anything?
That’s a tough one.  Living through the pandemic has taught me that things can change so quickly – rules, laws, attitudes, lifestyle, routines.   Sometimes it’s hard to feel that we are not in control of those things, when they are changing in unpredictable ways.  It has been a reminder to cherish the important things like family and my eternal home with the Lord.
 
Favorite Scripture verse and why?  
Another tough question!  If I had to pick just one, it would be Matthew 5:16.  “In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.”
 
Favorite book you have ever read?
I love to read and have lots of favorites – you can see my Goodreads page here and the books section on my blog here.  The book that had the most impact on me recently is The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom.  The book tells her story – a middle-aged “old maid” watchmaker who works with her family in the Dutch Underground to rescue many Jews during WWII.  A true story.
 
Best advice you would give to a new blogger?
Just be yourself!  Trends in blogging come and go.  I can remember times when all of the following things were popular in the blogging world:  craft blogs, shabby chic backgrounds and buttons, photo-a-day, long essays, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook and now of course, Instagram.  So my advice is to stay true to what YOU want to say, and then connect with others through comments or social media.  I can’t wait to “meet” some of you over on The Other Side of the Road!
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Thank you, Tanya, for taking the time to answer my questions!
Hope y’all have a great day!
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8 thoughts on “Meet and Greet Tuesday

  1. Your blog name is PERFECT and Grace came up with it?!? LOVE THAT! Okay, I am heading over to read how you and your hubby met now, Tanya! So fun to read more about you!!

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