Are you an expert at something special?

Thanksgiving is nearly here and hopefully you’ll be enjoying at least a couple of days off from your normal routine this week. Dave and I are leaving for San Diego very early in the morning tomorrow, and we’re super excited about exploring new areas of California, spending time with his parents and sisters and stopping for a little extra overnight on the tail-end of our trip, which I’ll talk about soon.

Because it’s Thanksgiving, this week should be all about being thankful. So in the spirit of “Treat Yourself Tuesday,” which I really enjoyed doing last week, today I’d like to do another positive post about being grateful. Remember when I said we should all give ourselves a pat on the back every once in a while as a way to treat ourselves? Well, maybe we should also remind ourselves that we’re pretty good at some stuff, and each and every one of us has something great to offer.

Do you have a special talent? Do you do something really well? What is it? Maybe this is a good time to write it down and be appreciative of all the things you bring to the table. And you know, it doesn’t all have to be super serious, which brings me to the topic at-hand.

I'm an expert at via A Lady Goes West blog

Let’s play a little game called “I’m an expert at …” which I’m adapting from the lovely Lynda, a wine country-based fitness enthusiast, because her post totally made me laugh as I related it to my own life. And without further ado …

I’m an expert at …

  • Packing perfectly for a vacation. I pull everything out and arrange outfits by day and event, down to the jewelry and underwear required for each, before placing everything in a suitcase or bag. I don’t think I’ve ever forgotten anything or felt outfit remorse while away. 
  • Bringing enough snacks to get through a day. You’ll never find me without a protein bar or bag of trail mix on hand, as well as a reusable water bottle. There are times I oversnack, because I’m fearful of getting hungry. Better safe than sorry, I’d say.
  • Remembering even the tiniest little details about somebody, so much that it tends to freak them out if I ever bring it up. It’s true. If you’re my friend, I can probably retell all of your stories with the same descriptions as you, because I just love learning about people and listening to them.
  • Fitting in one more little chore before walking out the door. That’s right, sometimes, or always, I insist on piddling around and doing little unnecessary tasks when Dave is rushing me to get out the door for something. For instance, before he dropped me off at Barry’s Bootcamp on Sunday morning, I declared I needed to vacuum with about fives minutes to spare before leaving. Granted, we have a minuscule apartment and takes no more than three minutes to do, but it’s the principle of the whole thing. I always feel better knowing I got one extra thing done. And I’m skilled at doing that.
  • Keeping an up-to-date wall calendar hanging in the kitchen. What, nobody uses wall calendars anymore? I disagree. Mine is going strong with plenty of pen marks through activities that changed after written down. And yes, I’ll go back after-the-fact to add things in that were unwritten.
  • Organizing group activities. I like to plan, I like to organize, and I like group stuff.
  • Cleaning my plate. I was taught at a young age to clean my plate, and even though the healthy-living advocate in me definitely likes to practice portion control: If it’s put on my plate, I’m probably go to finish it. 
  • Running a group fitness class. I like to command a room, and after years and years of teaching, I’d like to think that I’m pretty good at it. And I’m good at holding a smile and eye contact while sweating profusely and huffing and puffing during hard parts of a workout.
  • Writing what I like to write. If this blog is any indication, I love to share my thoughts via the written word, and based on all of the lovely readers who keep coming back for more, I think I’m doing an okay job here.
  • Leave-no-trace living. What does that mean? I put away every single thing I use in my apartment after using it, so that nothing is ever left out. I make the bed after getting up, wash my dishes as soon as I’m done eating, and constantly empty the garbage. It’s leave-no-trace, my friends, and I excel at it. I like to have things “show ready” at all times, which may be the former-Disney employee coming out in me.
  • Eating dessert. My stomach can handle any amount of sugar. When someone is pushing a plate of dessert away and declaring it “just too sweet,” I’ve likely already finished mine and starting eating Dave’s. (And just because I’m an expert at eating desserts, does NOT mean this is a good thing, folks. You can’t cage up this beast in sweet-mode.)
  • Writing long messages in cards. I’m afraid I’m one of those gift-givers at showers and parties, who has written a card so long the person opening it has to wink at me across the room and say “I’ll read this one later …”
  • Making bulleted lists. I really like to make lists. I think I’m good at it too.
  • Filling up a Tuesday blog post on a holiday week with very little substance. (You can figure this one out yourself, and that makes something you’re good at too.)

That about covers it. I’m over here patting myself on the back in honor of “Treat Yourself Tuesday” and being thankful for many things in life …

Thanks again for the idea, Lynda. I guess I’m also an expert at recreating good content.

I hope you all enjoy your Tuesday. Are you getting in a workout today? I was up to substitute teach a super-early morning BODYPUMP class today and am also fitting in a Barry’s Bootcamp this afternoon, before some off days over the rest of the week. Check back in the morning for another food post before you head off on your holiday and have an awesome day!

Questions of the day

What are you an expert at? What is something you wish you were an expert at?

 Ashley signature

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  1. I LOVE this! I thought I was the only one who went back in my planner or wall calendar to write in something I did, but wasn’t written at the time! And I think I could easily go toe to toe with you on the sweet tooth addiction. Mine can’t be tamed.

    1. Hi Courtney! We are pretty similar, ehhh?? The silly thing about the calendar is, I will definitely toss it in the garbage at the end of the year, but I’m still only comfortable knowing everything has been written on there. Doesn’t make any sense, but oh well. Hope you have a great day!! Are you looking forward to all.the.pie.and.cake this weekend? I am!

  2. I’m like you, sometimes I eat before I’m hungry for fear of being hungry. I become a monster when I’m hungry so it’s for everyone else’s benefit too!
    I’m also an expert at organizing group activities. My friends always look to me to plan events.

    1. Hi Jen! Well then you and I don’t need to be friends, since other people clearly need our services. hehhehe:) Thanks for stopping by, and I’m sure you did so with a full stomach. Have a wonderful week!

  3. Hahaha, cute post Ashley! I love the whole Disney employee “show ready” concept – too funny, I’m picturing a Disney princess putting her game face on! But seriously, good skill. And the last bullet? I wouldn’t have known! Have a great holiday in Socal girly <3

    1. Hi Jill, Oh yes, I’ve taken many things with me from my time at Disney, many many things. Thanks for the love, and you have a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving:)

  4. Love this!

    I am an expert at:
    -Becoming friends with any animals at a party. Everyone mingling and having cocktails? I’m probably following the cat a little too closely as it is running away from me.
    -Connecting with kids. I so love being in Publix and seeing a little one being held by their mom and holding their gaze long enough to make a funny face so they smile. I just love babies. πŸ™‚
    -Getting people to play drinking games. I can’t decide whether I am proud/not proud of it, but in general I can convince a group of 30 something’s to play at least one game of circle of death during a night in with friends.
    -Making a meal when there is nothing in the house to eat. I can always do this. Always.
    -Buying the “best” product. I swear I spend hours reading reviews of the product I am looking for, and then scouring for the best price. I hardly ever have buyer’s remorse because I have done my research. This has also led me to do the impossible, like buy jeans online. It has also led my friends to come to me to ask for advice before buying something because they know I’ve probably already done the research. haha (This goes for anything from lipstick to a tablet)
    -Food knowledge. It is ridiculous how much space in my brain is taken up by food. Don’t know what season mango’s grow in? I’ve got it. Searching for a local co-op? I’ll send you my resources. What is that strange looking vegetable next to the celery? Probably jicama. Need a recipe for it? lol….you get the idea.

    1. Hi Judy! Yep, that’s your list for sure. I’m good at getting people to play games at parties too, I should have listed that. And I KNOW you are a master in the kitchen. I should probably research products more before buying. Nonetheless, thanks for playing along. You’re an expert at playing along! Love ya!!

  5. I’m an expert at finding the perfect city apartment haha. I have rented four different condos since being in Chicago, all of which I found via stalking Craigslist. I love to bake, but have made so many fails. I would enjoy being an expert at baking πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Lizzie, Well if finding a place in Chicago is anything like SF, then your skill is super amazing. Nice work!! I’d like to be a good baker too, but that might not be a good idea seeing as I have a dessert issue. πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Christa! Ohh wow, I’d like to know some of the creative desserts you’ve made. And I CANNOT get ready in 10 minutes, so that’s impressive!

  6. these Ashley. Are you a Virgo by any chance? LOL
    Okay I wish I had enough clothing and jewelry and fun accessories to pack a suitcase like you.
    Oh and doing a last minute chore before heading out …yep. The wall calendar, a must:)

    1. Hahaha, I know. I don’t think I’ll ever kick my sugar habit, but at least I’m pretty good about controlling it Monday-Thursday … πŸ™‚

  7. This post is great! πŸ™‚ You sound like a serious force to be reckoned with. Have you always been this way in terms of organization, tidiness, and diligence, or have you learned some of it? I feel like with some things, I’ve actually made backwards progress with good habits and being on the ball–yikes.

    P.S. I’m a champion at dessert-eating, too. πŸ˜‰

    1. Hi Suzanne! Well thanks. Yes, I’ve always been this way. Even as a child. It’s a blessing and a curse. πŸ™‚ Glad you’re a woman who likes her desserts. Hope you have a great day!

  8. What a sweet idea for a post! πŸ™‚ I love that you recognize all these things about yourself. They’re all really great qualities, too — especially remembering details about people and writing good messages in cards (in my opinion). Being an expert dessert eater is pretty excellent too πŸ˜‰

    1. Hi Carla, Oh yes, I worked at Disney twice. Once straight out of college as a communications coordinator at Epcot. Then the second time as a communications manager for entertainment. It’s a very wonderful, yet also challenging place to work in many ways. I learned SO much and will always love Disney and all it stands for. πŸ™‚

  9. This was such a fun post to read! I love hearing about all of your little quirks and I’m so jealous of so many of them! I’m definitely not a “leave no trace” liver. More of an all-over-the-place liver! Happy Thanksgiving! I’m so thankful for our friendship.

    1. Hi Kelly! The world needs all-over-the-placers to keep things interesting, that’s for sure. It would be boring out there if everyone was like me hehehe. Have a great Thanksgiving:)

  10. This is an awesome idea! I may have to steal this to use with my middle and high school students sometime πŸ™‚ People always struggle to mention what they’re great at and have an easy time listing what they’re “bad” at so this is great!

  11. Aw – I loved hearing about all the interesting things you’re great at! I am ALSO an expert at putting away more than one dessert – I like to say I have a totally SEPARATE dessert belly and now matter how much I eat at dinner, there’s ALWAYS room for dessert. Let’s go get dessert sometime! Have you been to Aziza for dessert? It’s themostamazingdesserteverrrrrrr. Happy Thanksgiving, Ashley!

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