I haven’t linked up with Mama Kat’s Writers’ Workshop in a while, and the prompt about “Seven things you love about your favorite TV character” was a no-brainer for me. But she’s a real person: Joanna Gaines.
Her style of dress. It’s OK to wear a t-shirt and jeans. Really, it is. Or a knit maxi-dress with a denim shirt over it and the sleeves rolled up. Joanna always looks likes she’s dressed for whatever may happen. She’s wearing sandals to show the house, but she’s got boots on for demo day. She’s a mom of many who lives on a farm. She has no need for platform heels, micro-minis, or anything else that’s solely “decorative”. As I told my husband before we got married, “Choose decorative or functional. You can rarely have both.” Joanna is both and so much more, but the rest of us can only be inspired by her.
Her design style. My sectional sofa is large and chocolate-brown because we needed a new sofa and I wanted one to match the fur and seat as many dogs and people as possible. I was miserable, still working full-time while preparing for my third (of four) cervical spine surgeries within two years. I sent my son and his girlfriend (now wife!) off to shop. Catherine is a force of nature and delivered exactly what I needed. But other than the tiny IKEA desk I work at in a corner of our dining room there isn’t a stick of furniture in my house I have chosen. But I know what I like. I know I could turn Joanna loose, with Catherine to choose colors (like my peaceful Lake Blue bedding!) and I’d arrive feeling at home. I think it’s partially that she really gets the “texture” component in design. A soft rug, a loopy pillow, a splintery sign on the wall – that makes it work for me.
Her ability to multitask. I used to be the queen of multitasking. Seriously. Now I can’t find my phone, glasses, or car keys. This woman raises several small children, has a working farm with chickens and goats and stuff, designs houses for other people, and decides what goes in her shop in Waco, TX and online and on her blog. And there’s a book coming out in October. Oh, yeah, and stars in a popular TV show.
Her hair. She has pretty hair, but she’s not all girly about it. It’s either down, in a ponytail, or in a literal knot at the back of her head. I love that! My hands go numb when I reach above my head, so clearly I’m never going to be sporting a fancy hairstyle. I’ve had my hair “done” exactly once – for my eldest son’s wedding. It wilted before the wedding even began, and it took me two showers and extra pain pills to get all that product out of my hair!
Her love of Chip. He’s one of those guys that you love to have at a party, but I think I’d probably kill him within two weeks. Normally, it would be one week, but he does seem to be able to fix a lot of things. The shopping trips together are cute on the show, but I’m about 98% sure after the film crew leaves she tells him to go anywhere else and leave her alone to shop and think. I’m kinda hoping she also cusses like a sailor, too.
Her youthfulness. I remember many years ago trying to turn cartwheels with my nieces. It didn’t go too well! But Joanna’s still doing backflips on the trampoline! Although I’m sorry, Jo-Jo, my kids would NOT have been allowed on your trampoline because it had no surrounding net. Ask any pediatric neurosurgeon what bought his last Maserati – backyard trampolines.
Her positive attitude. This is the big one. My husband has always told me I’m a pessimist, and I’ve always insisted I’m a realist. Well, the last few years I’ve been the prophet of doom. Up to and including a suicide attempt just because I didn’t want to be here when all the horrible stuff happened (home foreclosed on, dogs euthanized, son dropping out of school, living in a homeless shelter until I died of a stroke from untreated high blood pressure and constant severe pain). Thankfully, I’m still here and none of those things have happened. But we’ve been damn close.