Last week I had my portrait taken by my dear friend and awesome photographer, Bethany Nauert. She and I originally started this blog together, though due to other professional obligations (she is a full-time photographer and contributing blogger to other blogs as well), we have now branched off going our own ways. Nevertheless, Bethany continues to give me ideas for the blog and will still be a future contributor to Steamed Not Fried! In fact, one of her suggestions to me was to share more about myself with you all -- more specifically, have her interview me, since I’m always the one interviewing everyone else! I thought it was a great idea and told her to come up with whatever questions she wanted to ask that might give you all a better sense of who I am! :)
Before I get into the questions, I'd like to take a minute to reflect and express my love for this blog and why it’s so important to me. As I have mentioned in my “About Me,” I grew up around my mother who was a homemaker and my father who was an Executive Chef at an exclusive country club. Along with them both cooking a lot (which helped me realize a talent and love for cooking), my father was extremely into health. Anyone who knew my dad knew how he was fanatic about it! He was always reading some article and/or at the health food store picking up some supplement, powder or vitamin. I remember taking frequent trips to the health food store with him and even then, at a young age, becoming interested in all things healthy.
I honestly never had any intention of working with food -- my father even discouraged me from it! He told me that it’s a career you dedicate your life to with little free time, as he did. I originally moved to Los Angeles to purse a career as a Fashion Stylist, but after some time, ended up feeling unfulfilled by it. I do, however, still exercise my skills in styling and my “vision” or my “eye” for creating things, which is still something I’m extremely passionate about.
Together my love for that and my history of growing up around a health nut, chef and homemaker has lead me to where it is I should be! Here. :)
One of the most profound things that made me further become a health nut had to do with losing both my parents at a young age, These events influenced me to become more conscious of my decisions in how I treat my body. Out of my own free-will, I have abstained from drinking alcohol for the last five years and I do not drink any caffeine (no coffee, no soda, no tea). I’m not saying you shouldn’t but these are things I have chosen to do and I have seen the benefits to doing so.
Just last month, I was given was a reminder as to why I’m doing this blog and reaffirmed my strong belief in living a healthy lifestyle (eating healthy food and exercising):
I was feeling overwhelmed with life. I had become feeling really weak in all my joints, and my doctor told me I may have RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis)... at 27! Years ago I had a doctor tell me the same thing -- I was working out like a maniac, going to the gym 2-3 hours a day and it scared me into thinking I had either over worked my body and that I was going to no longer be able to exercise anymore without extreme pain. The past doctor reversed his diagnosis, but my current doctor brought it back into focus. To further complicate things in my search for pain relief, I received a localized skin cancer diagnosis. Growing up at the beach, it wasn't necessarily surprising, but still very upsetting. Fortunately, my passion for health has enabled me to take a proactive approach to these issues. While dealing with both of these situations and dealing with so many doctors the one thing they all asked was -- how my diet was, do I exercise, what's my stress level, and how many hours of good sleep do I get. It all clicked to me then that the answer is sometimes just simply eating healthy, moving our bodies, getting rest and being relaxed/stress free. I’m still trying to figure out exactly what my diagnosis is from my doctor but in the meantime I strongly stand behind everything this blog is about and living a balanced healthy lifestyle.
On to lighter topics... Here is my interview with Bethany Nauert!
What inspires you daily, besides health food/or the blog?
I’m inspired everyday by music, nature (trees, the sky, the beach), travel, beautiful photos/ beautiful things, colors. I could be driving and listening to music coming up with ideas or being inspired while walking outside and looking at my surroundings. I am also very inspired by other people and their stories. I love reading about or watching videos on how other people got to where they are at and what they had to overcome or how they “started from the bottom” (as Drake says.) ;)
What's your favorite movie and why?
I can’t just name one but my three favorites that I watch all the time are Wedding Crashers, Gladiator and The Graduate. I love Wedding Crashers because I really love the location of the movie, it reminds me of New England and with their “All American Family.” It’s also really funny and has some great quotes. Gladiator has been one of my favorites since it came out. Talking about inspiration that story alone is inspiring even if it’s a movie! Russel Crowe’s character was so strong and such a leader and I really admire those qualities and think it was a really well done film. The Graduate became a favorite a while back too. I loved the soundtrack, the story and the way it was shot.
If you could have one super power what would it be? What would you use it for?
Oh that’s easy! Teleportation! I would use it to go wherever I want to go at that moment. If I want to go lay on a tropical beach I could go for an hour and then come back home.
How would others describe you?
That’s a tough one but… I think the people closest to me would describe me as funny, silly/goofy, serious at times, organized, determined, talented, thoughtful, caring and strong. [Physically and mentally ;)]
Where is your favorite place to spend a Sunday?
I’m never always at the same place every weekend but it’d probably be the beach.
What about LA turns you on?
The options and the weather! There is so much to do here and so much to see! I’ve lived here for seven years now and I still haven’t seen all of it! The weather here makes me happy everyday!
What about LA turns you off?
You can probably guess that before I even answer. It’s the thing that turns everyone off about this city. The traffic! I feel so much of the day is wasted in the car and planning around it taking an hour to go 3 miles. Other than that though I don’t have any complaints, I love this city!
Haha! Really? That’s so hard to say! Here are two that I absolutely love though. Larchmont Bungalow (Best omelettes ever!) Thank you, Bethany for showing me this amazing spot! ;) My second is a shout out to a place back home in South Florida..Yu-Mi Sushi. Hands down the best sushi I’ve ever had anywhere! I always make sure I stop by there when I go back to the East Coast.
You have a cat and a dog, what are their names?
Remy and Mocha. Recently, I’ve been making up new names for them and find I hardly call them by their actual names anymore haha! Remy is a six-year-old Boston Terrier who I now call Shwemy or McShwemington. Don’t ask how I came up with that but that’s what I call him now. Mocha has been in the family for a long time! She is a thirteen-year-old Burmese and I call her Shmokey. Again, I don’t know how I came up with these names!
What do you enjoy more? Sunrise...or Sunset?
Both are great! I really like Sunsets though. I enjoy walking my dog in the evening right as the sun is about to go down and I reflect on my day and think about the world and all those kind of deep thoughts. I also love when the sky is changing color. There was a while where here in LA the sunset was looking purple it was absolutely beautiful!
Favorite childhood memory?
I loved spending the summers on Cape Cod and going to summer camp up there. I learned so much and met so many great people. I also loved exploring the Cape and New England with my parents on the weekends when I wasn’t at camp. It’s not an exact memory but those summers are all definitely my favorite childhood memories.
If you were a crayon, what color would you be?
Anyone who knows me knows it would be teal!
What's your favorite word?
Um…I really have no idea. Haha! Love…that’s so cheesy but it is a great word and makes me feel happy.
If you could relive one single day from start to finish, what would it be?
This is the same answer as my favorite childhood memory. I really loved spending the summer and growing up on Cape Cod. There’s not much that can compare to a perfect day on the cape in the summer! Time at the beach, sunshine, two laned beautiful winding roads, some of the best and freshest seafood anywhere (lobstah rolls ;)), clean air, being a little kid, being with my parents....life was carefree! I would relive any of those days up there in a heart beat!
If you could fix one thing, solve one problem, in all of the world, what would you do?
My answer is going to be so cliché BUT I honestly would want there to be world peace. I feel so silly saying that but I really wonder how the world would be if there were no fighting and everyone got along. What if we weren’t divided and everyone accepted each other and their opinions and views with no hard feelings. That would be something I’d fix…through this questionnaire haha!
Last movie you watched?
American Hustle. I really liked that movie a lot!
What song is on repeat right now in your ipod?
The Walker by Fitz and the Tantrums (I LOVE this band, if you’re not familiar with them you should check them out!)
What would you rather do? Eat a bowl of crickets or crawl into a bed of them?
I’d definitely crawl into the bed, if I had to choose of course! ;)
Written by: Kristen Tola Hettich
Interviewed and Photographed by: Bethany Nauert