How long have you been blogging?
I've always been a journaler. I started my first (paper) journal when I was in grade 5. I just kept writing through-out my entire childhood and then I finally discovered the internet when I was 20. Yes. You read that right, 20 years old. I was a late bloomer! I joined livejournal in 2000 and wrote in my lj pretty much everyday for over a decade. I had a blogspot journal a few years ago but didn't keep at it. This is my second try! Writing has always been one of the most accessible way for me to get information out as a Deaf person who does not speak. I am surrounded by hearing people (co-workers, friends, family, and strangers) who do not sign or can only sign so much. Thus it can be hard to communicate my thoughts and feelings in a way where information flows out in a natural way. Writing has been a medium where I'm able to connect with non-signers. Journaling as a child & teenager was a safe space for me to just talk about everything while in my everyday life, communication barriers were everywhere. But it still was with only myself. Being introduced to online blogging really broke down a lot of barriers I had been having with people. The internet has been such a blessing for me as a Deaf person!

Why do you say you're an elf in your short bio?
Long story short, when I was a wee lad, my mom asked what I wanted to be when I grew up and I signed back at her that I wanted to be an elf. For some reason, from day one it seems - I’ve been fascinated by elves and have always wanted to be one. People call me elf as a nickname. Whenever there’s a costume theme about showing up as what you were meant to be, I always show up as an elf and people know I will show up as one. I am not super serious about being an elf, I know I’m a human being. These dang ears just refuse to become pointy! But it doesn’t mean that I don’t have a little elf in me. It’s something to be celebrated.

Why do you use Deaf and not deaf? What is the difference?
By saying Deaf, I am stating that I consider myself culturally Deaf. In the d/Deaf community, deaf means the medical condition (deafness itself) and Deaf means that one is culturally Deaf. There is a very diverse & rich Deaf culture full of folklore, traditions, social norms, and of course a love for sign language.

What do you mean by urban homesteading?
My partner and I have been working (slowly) towards a more sustainable way of life. I really enjoy writing about that part of our life as it motivates me so a part of the blog will be about this journey. I acknowledge the fact that urban homesteading as a white person living on stolen land is problematic and that the ability to engage in urban homesteading itself is a privilege that I have. 

What camera do you use?
I have two cameras, a Nikon D40 and a Nikon D7000. As for lens, I use my standard 18mm-50mm & 50mm-200mm zoom lenses and also my beloved 50mm f1.8 lens.

What do you do for a job?
Tricky question! Before I moved to Vancouver, I worked at a quilt shop for a few years as their web admin. Then I moved here and struggled with finding a job and somehow ended up being self-employed as a photographer/designer/ASL instructor. I designed an ASL Club program where I teach basic ASL to friends & friends of friends (and soon, to my partner's family!). It's super important for me to create an accessible community and share my love for ASL with others. Recently I got hired as a photographer/media person at Deaf Children's Society and work with deaf preschoolers half of the time which is a DREAM come true. I'm loving every minute of it. So now I have this job but also still manage to fit in time for everything else.

Any other questions? Feel free to contact me at zoeenuage[at]gmail[dot]com.

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