Monday, March 28, 2011

About me

(I've recently added the below to my About Me page on my blog. I thought it might be interesting for you all to read and that it will probably get lost on the tabby thing on my blog so have posted it here as well.)

My name is really Michelle.

But I go by the name of 'Clover' because I don't like my real name, I've always known about 1,000 other Michelles and I think that Clover sounds prettier and different. I don't feel like I've ever connected to the name Michelle in my entire life. If someone were to shout 'Michelle!' at me from a distance, it's possible that I would think that that person were calling someone else.

I guess it is sort of confusing to go by both Michelle and Clover. I should probably drop the 'Clover' but I can't. I like it too much.

I'm 28 (soon to be 29) and I spend a lot of my time reading and writing this blog. I live in the Southeast of England in a pretty little town. I am very socially awkward and shy. I'm a hesitant driver. I love ballet and musicals and 60s music. I don't drink alcohol or tea. I love word games like Scrabble and Boggle. I'm competitive by nature, but mostly with myself, unless we're playing Scattergories. I'm half Native-Alaskan. I'm never sure what to write on one of these 'About Me' pages, which is probably why I've never had one before now.

Fluttering Butterflies wasn't always a book blog. For many years, it was more personal. I'd write about my family issues, memories of growing up, my thoughts on the things around me. I've been writing Fluttering Butterflies since January of 2006 and hope to continue writing it for many more years to come.

I am an American citizen but I've lived in the UK since 2000.

Though I was born in Seattle, I've never lived there. Instead, I spent the first 7 years of my life living in Alaska (my mother is from the Tlingit tribe, who live mostly in Southeast Alaska). Here and there, mostly. My parents and brother moved around a bit growing up. We lived briefly in California and Texas. But I would say that I'm 'from' Oregon if anyone ever asked.

I love Oregon. We lived in Medford for a year, but then switched to Eugene, which is a far superior place to live. There, I really grew up and I lived there for more than 10 years. How I miss Eugene! The people, the atmosphere, the Saturday market, the university, the library. I'd love to go back, even though you can never really go home, can you? Sadly, I haven't been back to Eugene but once since I moved to England.

I met my husband, N, on the Internet!

Yes, N is the reason I moved to another continent. It's a sweet story really, a modern-day fairy tale. We met in a chat room when I was 16 and started regularly chatting and emailing. That led to talking on the phone, which led to N travelling crazy and ridiculous distances in order for us to meet in person. We started chatting online in December of 1998, met for the first time in December of 1999 and were married in December of 2000. We've now been happily married for over 10 years. He still makes me laugh.

What I love the most about our relationship it began and is based on a great level of communication. We were friends for a long time before it progressed to another more romantic. N is a little shy and has allowed precious few photos of himself to made public.

I used to work in a book store, looking after the children's department.

When I first moved to England, I had no idea what I wanted to do. I didn't know anyone, I didn't have any qualifications or much work experience. My first job was stocking shelves of the stationery department in W H Smith. That led to working full-time on the front tills. Which led to working in the book department where I really felt happy.

When a new bookstore opened in town (the now closed Books Etc) I applied there. At Books Etc, I worked with some incredible people and was eventually given the exciting job of managing the children's department. A job which I loved. I miss that job so much.

I really love working with books. I loved buying books from publishing reps, from opening the boxes of new books. I loved putting the books out, arranging the shelves. I loved talking about books with people, recommending them. I loved the people who worked in bookstores, the people who come into bookstores. My job at Books Etc was wonderful, and I will always think of it fondly. Thankfully, I'm able to have some of these same conversations and feel some of the excitement about books through book blogging.

I am now a stay-at-home mother, looking after my two beautiful boys.

But it had to come to an end eventually. In 2005, my eldest son was born. I gave up my job in order to look after him. Just over two years later, another son was born. Both boys are gorgeous and clever and unbelievably mischievous. They keep me on my toes, they've turned my hair grey, they've made my life more fulfilled and insanely more happy than I've ever felt possible. I feel lucky in so many ways. I talk about my boys fairly often on this blog. They are such a huge part of my life and who I am, how can I not talk about them?

Though my Eldest is now in primary school, and Littlest is headed towards nursery, we still try to spend a great deal of time together as a family doing fun things. Our favourite place ever? Legoland. Without a doubt. We also love Whipsnade Zoo and going to parks.

I also study parttime with the Open University, attempting to get a degree in Psychology.

Lots of people think I'm insane. I already have a full-time job looking after the boys, but add together reading and book blogging ... and studying for a degree? I've been trying for a degree for several years. There were a few misfires at first. I went down a path studying Literature. Then Law. Until now, finally, I've settled on psychology. It's a fascinating subject, one that still holds my interest, thankfully! I'm not sure what I'd like to do with my degree when I'm finished, but I've always hoped that I would be able to help people in some way. Especially teenagers who went through similar experiences that I did growing up - with suicidal thoughts, depression, eating disorders or self-harm. We shall see.

I love butterflies. And Eeyores. And jelly beans. And books. And blogging. And comments. And pie.

If you have any other really important questions you'd like to know about me, don't hesitate to email me at: flutteringbutterfliesblog (at) googlemail (dot) com


  1. Really interesting post, thanks, and it's great to know more about you! Wow, you've had this blog for nearly 10 YEARS!

  2. Sorry Cliona, that was a MASSIVE typo! I've been blogging since Jan '06! Not '01!! :)

  3. LOL, after two years I have learnt to live with your double persona! I can divert between the two names with ease!

    I didn't realise you were born in Alaska. I would love to see Alaska one day.

    Fab post!

  4. This is great, I find it really difficult to think of things 'about' myself... maybe nothing very exciting has happened to me...yet!
    I love that picture of your wedding day. N is such a myserious character, love it! I feel like I give too much of myself away willy-nilly.
    Great page, and I would have missed it I think if you hadn't posted :)

  5. Wow, it's great to learn more about you. And now I feel really bad for always calling you "Michelle". I shall try "Clover" from now on, but I may forget - please forgive me if I do!

  6. I love this Clover :) You truely are an amazing person. I like how you are so happy and incredibly content. You know what you like and what you want. Its lovely xx

  7. Viv - that's because you're clever :) Sometimes even *I* find it confusing!

    Also, yes. Alaska is a beautiful place. I'd love to take my boys there and show them where my mother's family are from. Where they're from, really!

    Fiona - Yet! I think that's the most important part of what you said :)

    N actually laughs at how he's portrayed on my blog, very secret-identityish. He thinks it's hilarious :)

    But you're so right, he questions me all the time about the amount of information that I share on this blog. But it's kind of part of who I am. And being hugely private is part of who he is..

    Jo - Oh, Jo! Don't worry about it. Michelle IS my actual name, so you don't have to apologise for calling me that :)

    Emmie - Thank you saying such lovely things :)

  8. Can you believe that our boys are in SCHOOL?? I'm way behind in blog reading. I usually do skim through yours, but rarely have two free hands to comment. My husband and I met online in August 1999, met in person in December 2000, and then I moved to SD in August 2002. Crazy.

  9. Lisa - Oh I know :( I really can't believe it. My little boy's first day at nursery is on Tuesday! I'm sure I'll cry.

    I still love how very similar our lives are though in terms of meeting our husbands, making huge moves and having our children at practically the same times. Our boys anyway, now you have your beautiful little girl.. I don't know how you manage! :)


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