I’d like to thank the Academy…!

As I sit here typing, while dinner is burning cooking in the oven, and the darlings are fighting playing, I am awestruck to open my blog to find this wonderful notification from sweet Samantha tonight! (More about the nom here.) To be nominated for a Liebster award is just a treat. Really, I feel as happy as if I’ve just found more of the darlings’ left over Christmas candy in a hiding spot I’d forgotten all about– that kind of jubilation is coursing through my veins at this very moment. For those of you wondering if Julie has just completely lost her marbles at this point, let me explain.
The Liebster is awarded to new bloggers as an encouragement and to get them started in the world of blogging. Its offered by fellow bloggers. A requirement is that they have fewer than 200 followers. Well, no problem there. I think as of today, I have a whopping 18. 1539 views apparently does not a follower make. So, I am still a novice around here, and if the shoe fits; write about it =)

First, let me start by saying to Samantha, how truly honored I am, that in this big ole’ land of bloggie hopefuls- somehow, someway, you found my little corner and thought enough of my bit of scribbles to give me a nod. Samantha is quite the writer I might add. Her blog is truly inspiring, and very honest (click here to see what I mean.) I started this blog last October to finally give my self a space, (not a Myspace, been there, done that) to put my feelings into words about what I believe in. I have been writing for about as long as I can remember, but its always been a private and delicious escape from who the world knows me to be, the funny girl.

My blog evolved out of my strong concern over the state of our culture’s current loss of connection due to the endless tech distractions. And so, naturally, my blog spills into other parts of my life that are near to me: being a wife and mother, and all the other labels we give ourselves throughout this journey. I put a few posts out there in my new blog in the early weeks of last October, reflecting on what’s been in my heart for some time; then didn’t write much more after my grandmother passed away a week after I began. It felt right for me at the time to just step back and take in what the world was trying to tell me. I spoke with my husband a lot about whether I should continue with my blog as more of a personal place for my journal-type entries, or whether I should bite the bullet and publicize it to people who actually could judge know me. By the end of the year I knew what I had to do. 2013 had been a bumpy road to say the least, as Lady Antebellum sings, with “Roller coasters high and low,” but I was no longer afraid. No longer lost. I ended my career in mortgage banking after doing nearly 10 years hard time, and just like that, I woke up to find there I was, beneath the rubble. And I could breathe, finally.

With a renewed sense of purpose, I began writing again. The beginning of January has been a busy time for my little blog. I’ve been churning out, or transferring over from my older writings, thought after thought about my beliefs, my life, my desires, my heart. I am not afraid of what the response will be to my writing, and I suppose because of this newly found courage, my writing is well, honest and real. Not everyone who knows me, or is related to me, expected this. What motivates me? I feel deeply about encouraging others to stop for a moment in the rat race and reflect on their relationships with each other. Evaluate their “friends” and relationships online, and take inventory of the investment they are making in their loved ones offline. So, to Samantha, and to anyone reading these words, thanks for finding my blog. I do hope you’ll stay so we can learn to fly together.

If you want more information on the rules for this award, you can find them here: Basically here is the jist:

1. Thank the person who nominated you and link to their blog. 2. You must answer the 10 questions given to you by the nominee before you. 3. You must nominate 10 of your favorite blogs with fewer than 200 followers and notify them of their nomination. 4. You must come up with 10 questions for your nominees to answer.

One more thing – if you link back to this post, your response will appear as a “pingback” in the discussion section at the end of this post, which allows me to share your words with your fellow nominees. (Like this!)

liebster2_thumb

rules.

So, on to the 10 questions Samantha has created and asked us noms to answer here:

1. What do you think you’ll be doing a year from now (therefore sometime in the middle of January in 2015)?

I imagine I will be trying to vacuum the last bits of the shriveled up Christmas tree needles from the carpet. I will be hunting for the last of hidden Christmas candy that I know I stuffed away somewhere to hide from the darlings; and I will be writing here, in my blog, and joining others in theirs. By the time 12 months has lapsed, I do hope I will still be writing from my heart. That is my only goal this year. Really. No gym memberships, big travel plans or life-altering reconstructions; just heart-felt honesty.

2. Coffee or tea? Or neither?!

Coffee. Right at this very moment in fact. Pumpkin Spice, the last of the creamer in the fridge. I am still hanging desperately onto the Holidays. My British Grammy might like if I could find it in myself to drink more tea, but it just tastes like dirty water to me, sorry Gram.

3. How long have you been blogging for?

Well, technically I’ve been blogging diligently and earnestly for the past 10 days. Add about 10 or so days before that last year, so almost a month? Basically I’m a fledgling who is ridiculously late to the blogging party 😉 I have been reading blogs for years and years thinking, “I ought to make one of these bloggy things, but would anyone even read it?”

4. If you could live your life in a movie, or a TV show, or a book, what would that movie/TV show/book be?

Easy. Hart of Dixie. It’s my family’s current guilty pleasure. We discovered it on Netflix when we first moved into our new home two months ago, and without our satellite hooked up, we’ve dived into the story line and the divinely cheesy world of Bluebell to the point where we discuss the characters as if they are a part of our actual lives. We even named our new puppy Dixie Lemon Bluebell.

5. … and why?

Because the show is silly, melodramatic, sweet, and an escape from reality; which I realized we really needed as a family. Sometimes you just have to get lost in the magic of an addictingly-innocent TV series; which is mostly appropriate for our entire circus. (My loving euphemism for my whole darling family) and the parts that aren’t we just tell our five year old not to talk about with his classmates or his Teacher during share. Don’t judge!

6. Do you have any big life aspirations (something you hope to achieve at any point in your lifetime—like anytime before you die)?

Absolutely. The biggest aspiration I used to have while growing up was to be a successful writer, never had a burning desire to be a mother. Now that I have been a mother for thirteen years, as I reflect on the day I became one, it occurs to me that life shows you what to aspire to, and you make it your goal to either live up to it, run from it, or carve out your own way.. which sometimes leads you right back to it. In my case, my greatest achievements will always and forever be my four perfect to me darlings. Growing up not thinking much about the impact of becoming a mother; all the while, life was preparing to show me what I’d actually been searching for- my heart. Not becoming a successful writer before I became a mother, was just life showing me that in fact I had to find my heart before I could find my voice. I’ve been lucky enough to have found it four times over. Now that I am finally pursuing my writing, and having realized that I’ve already achieved my greatest accomplishments, the success part of my writing goal seems to matter a whole lotta less. I just want to keep writing to express my incredibly full and grateful heart, and hopefully my voice will follow.

7. What is your favorite holiday? (If you don’t celebrate any holidays, what is your favorite time of the year?)

Christmas. Hands down. Halloween is fun too, (quite the stark contrast, I realize but follow me.) In both holidays, as a kid I remember both the magic surrounding them, as well as the terror. Santa was both a mythical delightful jolly chap who brought treats- and smelled funny when you got too close to him at the mall. Likewise Halloween was a magical time when I could literally eat myself sick of candies I had often never dreamed of until they spilled out from my pillowcase to be counted and devoured. It was also horrifying. I am still scared of haunted houses– but I will still go if you can promise they are handing out candy.

8. Do you have any regrets? (Share if you like, or simply answer yes/no—up to you.)

I sure do. Too many to write out. My biggest regrets come from not listening to myself when I chose to become a person I knew I was not authentically in my heart. Some of my actions along my winding road led me to be ashamed of myself, that is a regret I still struggle to release. Sometimes I wish I could take back moments and start again. I didn’t believe in myself like I do now. So I regret taking so long to believe in myself. It could have saved me from a lot of mistakes. Then again, I am glad for the mistakes I’ve made.. so I say, “No Ragrets.” Not even one? Not even a single letter? Nope.

9. If you were only allowed to eat one food for the rest of your life, what food would you choose?

I would say grilled cheese sandwiches. Not the kind I make here at home with block cheddar, but the kind you get at restaurants when you order for your kids off the children’s menu and then eat most of it yourself. The gooey, American cheese product, kind. Mmmmm.

10. If the leprechaun stole the pig’s money, why does the octopus sing to the vase of roses?

Is this some new trending secret code with the cool kids? If so, I’m not getting invited to the club anytime soon. I am, after all, approaching my 30′s. All I can think of when reading this question is, the leprechaun shouldn’t be stealing from the pig, his pot is filled with gold, and everybody knows pig’s only carry paper money, you know: lettuce, cabbage, dough, greenbacks, bacon 😉

And without further ado/adieu, Here is my list of 10 nominations for the Liebster award. Aong with my own 10 questions for these budding bloggers. Each of them has intrigued me, I am eager to hear from them. Here goes:

1. http://run2src.wordpress.com/

2.http://playswithwords.wordpress.com/2014/01/13/when-setting-goals-backfires/

3. http://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/15872631/

4. http://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/11293000/

5. http://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/49207095/

6. http://itsallhers.wordpress.com/2014/01/11/the-forgotten-hero/

7. http://travellinme.wordpress.com/

8. http://randeebergen.wordpress.com/

9. http://charlywrites.com/

10. http://livingwithshadows.wordpress.com/

My questions for you all above:

1. What is the hardest word for you to write. Why? Not from a spelling or grammatical angle, I am talking about your feeeeeeelings.

2. What time of day do you most often write? Why is that?

3. Do you check your stats as much as I do to see if anyone actually reads your posts, or are you writing and then tuning out entirely until you have something else to say?

4. What was the last book you read?

5. What was the last blog you read?

6. What is your favorite word to write and why? Remember guys, feeeeeeelings.

7. What would make you delete a post after you’ve composed/published it?

8. What are your thoughts on identity theft in the land of blogging? What have you done to protect yourself, your words? Will you do anything?

9. Why did you decide to accept this award?

10. Why did you start your blog?

Thanks for reading to the bottom if you are not yourself a blogger, especially from this list. Thank you even more if you are- you’re blogs have each inspired me to keep writing, including this here post.