So... When I decided to create this blog, I was gchatting my friend Caitlin, and we were trying to come up with a "good" name for my brand new baby blog. One of the names she suggested was "Rhymes With Laundry," which I very promptly dismissed.
But as I kept thinking, and as I came up with no good names (and discovered the few names I thought of were already taken... Rats!), I thought, "Hmm, maybe there's something to this "laundry" thing."
The phrase "Rhymes With Laundry" embodies many aspects of who I am: a happy-go-lucky, sometimes nerdy, Salvadorian Mormon girl from Utah, who has often lived her life in two different worlds, but most often with one foot in each. Those of you who are bi-cultural or who have ever been a minority in any way (religious, cultural, ethnic, etc.), understand what I'm talking about when I say I often feel like I'm neither here nor there. I was born in El Salvador, and I'm extremely proud of my heritage (and our food! Oh, the food!), but I grew up in a white, Mormon world, where I was not the typical blonde-haired, blue-eyed gringa. I still live in between both worlds today.
You see, my name is Yándary. It's a Spanish name, supposedly from a Colombian novela (ie- soap opera). I'm the only one of the five kids in my family with a Spanish name. (Heck, even my parents have English names!) Maybe it's because I was the only one of the five kids born in El Salvador? As the story goes, my mom and her friend were pregnant at the same time. They were due around the same time, but neither one of them knew her baby's gender. The friend was set on the name Yándary if she had a girl, but alas, she had a boy. My mother then stole the name, wrapped it up in unpronounceable pink ribbon, and gave it to me. That, dear readers, is the true story of how I got my name.
How does this tie in with "Laundry," you're wondering? Luckily for you, the story continues. As it turns out, I was born during a really bad war in El Salvador, so my parents decided to leave and come to the U.S. when I was two. (No one asked me what I thought, but apparently, they liked me, so they brought me, too.) We lived in California 'til I was nine years old. In California, our main language was español. We went to church in Spanish, to school in Spanish, and talked to all our family and most of our friends in Spanish. (You definitely don't need English to survive in LA.)
When I was nine, we moved to Utah (Oh, yeah. We're Mormon.). We quickly realized we needed to learn English ASAP! When I introduced myself to people at my new school or at church (we decided to go to church in English, rather than Spanish, so we could all improve our English as a family), I'd say, "Hi, my name is Yándary." To which they'd all respond, "Wha...?" I'd say, "Yándary." More head-scratching. Followed by cringe-worthy attempts to pronounce my name properly. Eventually they'd end up saying something like Yawn-dree. And by that point, I was usually ready to give up on them ever saying my name even halfway decently. Somehow, everyone ended up saying "Yawn-dree," so I decided to make my life (and theirs) simpler by telling them my name was "Yawn-dree," and that it "rhymes with laundry, but with a Y." Sometimes, this pronunciation still makes me cry a little inside, but I'm used to it by now. I guess that was my attempt at "assimilating," or something? It does make me happy when my friends who speak Spanish can actually say my name right, but I also get that not everyone can roll a Spanish "R," so no worries- we'll still be friends if you can't! :)
Sorry for making this so long, but now you know the story of how my blog and I got our names.