15 Random Facts About Valeria

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In business, "informal" is a dirty word.  People are encouraged to be themselves...but not too much themselves. This is why I don't want to be your business associate.  I don't want to just be some vendor who shows up at your home or event, camera in tow, as you awkwardly try to figure out how you should behave with me.  

I love my clients!  I build friendships with them and care about them.  I can't come to you asking to see the real, vulnerable you if I don't [also] show that side of myself.  I want you to feel safe greeting me wearing sweatpants with your hair in a messy bun.  I don't want you to feel nervous about saying something awkward or worry that your significant other might make one of his famous inappropriate jokes.  My goal is to assure you that I'm weird, too.  When meeting me, rather than thinking "there's the photographer...better act natural" I'd rather you thought "Val's here".  

In case you thought I was cool at any point, here are 15 reasons to reconsider that opinion...

  1. The million dollar question I get: how does one pronounce my name?  In short, it rhymes with "malaria", not "diarrhea".  Please don't try to visualize it...
  2. I am a huge (read "YUGE"!) video game nerd!  RPGs are my jam so if you're into Skyrim, Witcher 3, Fallout 4 or Dark Souls 3...we've much to talk about, friend.
  3. I LOVE adopting animals!  My home is a zoo (a dog, 3 cats, a bearded dragon and a snake).  I don't have friends; I have people who come over to play with the animals.
  4. Speaking of animals - my dog, Dozer, is the way to my heart.  He's a 120lbs pure-bred German Rottweiler that someone was dumb enough to abandon in a shelter.  His nicknames include Bubba, Bumblebee Tuna and Baby-Grandpa.
  5. I don't cry very often.  I'm usually the only one who doesn't cry at sad movies.  However, the show Vikings reduces me to a blubbering infant.  It's made me bawl at least twice per season, every season.
  6. What I lack in height I make up for in attitude and self-deprecating humour.
  7. Children and babies (even shy ones) always seem comfortable around me right away.  At 4'11" they probably think I'm another kid.  At my husband's work picnic this summer, a 6 year old asked me which one of the adults is my dad.  True story.
  8. I always think really nice thoughts about people and I never verbalize them for fear of coming across as a weirdo.  I'm making more of an effort to be open with my compliments instead of locking them up in my mind.
  9. If I ever won the lottery, I would buy an island and call it Rottweiler Island.  All cats and dogs would be welcome but it would have a 50 Rottweiler minimum.  Multiple people have realized I'm a loser when I told them of my dream.
  10. If you ever make a cheesy Simpsons reference, I'm always going to know it and always going to jump right on board to participate.  
  11. Because Alice in Chains is my favourite band and I listen to a lot of metal, people think that's all I like.  What they don't know is that I know the words to a lot of Bryan Adams songs.  This is the first time I've admitted that to anyone.  Maybe I should re-think this 15 facts thing...getting embarrassing.
  12. As a donut enthusiast, I can easily plow through a dozen Tim's donuts. 
  13. I strongly prefer winter of summer.  I adore snow and the cold.  Summer makes me uncomfortable because you can only remove so much clothes before you wonder if flaying yourself is such a bad idea.  Also, I get really cranky if I'm too hot.  Steer clear if you ever see me with a sweat-mustache.
  14. My proudest moment as a parent came when my daughter's teacher caught me in the parking lot of the school.  She told me, with tears welling up in her eyes, that she was so grateful to see children being raised the way my daughter is.  It seems the class found out her teacher was engaged to another women and started making some hurtful comments.  My daughter stood up in front of the whole class and gave them an earful.  I've never been more proud.
  15. I was 27 years old when I had my wisdom teeth removed.  To show you how truly vulnerable I'm prepared to be, here's a horribly embarrassing video my husband filmed in the recovery room.  Please excuse the fact that I look like I had been through a wind tunnel.