If you aren’t familiar with the Liebster Award (I wasn’t), it is a blogger award that started in 2011 as a way for bloggers to recognize and acknowledge other blogs they enjoy reading, helping blog readers discover new blogs.
Thank you sincerely to Jewish Thoughts for nominating me for the 2017 Liebster :).
Jewish Thoughts started reading my blog when I began including more Jewish content about a year ago, I want to say. She has been a loyal reader ever since, and leaves thoughtful comments often, which are always appreciated and encouraging. I used to be hesitant to include Jewish content, but it is readers like Jewish Thoughts who help me feel confident and inspired to share posts on that aspect of my life.
If you are curious about the Liebster award, or I nominated you and you would like to participate, here is some background info on the award and how to accept the Liebster (thank you, WordingWell.com for this blog post with helpful info about this award).
About The Liebster Award:
It has German origins – the word “liebster” has several definitions: dearest, sweetest, kindest, nicest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, etc. etc.
It follows similar principles as a chain letter, in the sense that it should be passed forward to a certain number of people.
It can be interpreted, depending upon your personal views, as either something wonderful (who doesn’t like awards?) or as an annoyance (a chain letter that involves work).
*I was on the fence about “accepting this nomination” because of the “work” involved. Ultimately I came to the conclusion that it is an honor to be nominated, and I’d love the opportunity to recognize other bloggers whose content I love. If I nominate you and you don’t feel like “playing” I completely understand! No pressure, just a way of giving you a virtual shout out. :)*
The Official Rules:
If you have been nominated for The Liebster Award AND YOU CHOOSE TO ACCEPT IT, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you:
1. thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.
2. display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget”.
3. answer 11 questions about yourself, which will be provided to you by the person who nominated you.
4. provide 11 random facts about yourself.
5. nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award.
6. create a new list of questions for the blogger to answer.
7. list these rules in your post (You can copy and paste from here.) Once you have written and published it, you then have to:
8. Inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!)
Ok, fewf! On to it, then:
11 Questions I was asked to answer:
1. When did you start blogging?
2. Why do you write?
See my blogpost “On Writing“.
3. What is your favourite holiday or festival?
Shabbat because it happens once a week, Chanukah because decor, presents, and food, or 4th of July.
4. What is your greatest ambition?
To have children, write a best-selling memoir or collection of essays, and visit all the National Parks. (Not necessarily in that order, lol)
5. If you could have any one thing what would it be?
A backyard trampoline! (Hubby refuses, “too dangerous” lol)
6. What was the best day of your life?
My wedding day 🙂
7. What is your favourite season?
Anything that isn’t winter.
8. Do you enjoy reading?
Yessssssss! So much.
9. What is your job?
I’m a Grant Writer.
10. What is your favourite recipe?
Shakshukah! (Recipe here)
11. What makes you want to wake up each morning?
Letting Barley out to pee and hot coffee waiting in the automated machine (god bless that thing).
11 Random Facts About Me:
1. I track the moon cycle.
This is the 3rd cycle I’ve been “observing”, and we’re almost halfway through, to the full moon, of this current cycle. Some people believe there are certain yin or yang associations with each of the eight moon phases. Google Lunar Abundance if you are intrigued.
2. I’m studying Palmistry.
I know, I know. You’re probably thinking this all seems pretty “woo-woo”, the moon and the palm stuff, but if I’m being completely honest I find this stuff fascinating. I’ve loved all things new-agey for as long as I can remember. And I mean, I did major in Religious Studies. I love eastern philosophies, and mysticism from every religion and culture.
This is the one I built with my friend Kevin two years ago. I’m working at rebuilding it, and more, slowly. I’m in no rush (think zen). It’s great because it is super functional, creating a sort of swimming pool area in the river. Zen gardening > lifting weights. And is equally challenging IMO. Some of those rocks are heavy.
4. One of the only things I bake is Challah.
You may recall from my Simple Kitchen Makeover that I planned to move the pantry items into the one kitchen cabinet that still has doors, switching it with our plates and bowls. Well, I did that on the first row of pantry items (canned food, rice, beans, and pasta), but decided to keep the second shelf as-is, which holds the baking ingredients and cooking liquids like olive oil and every type of vinegar you could dream of (an hot sauce, lots of hot sauce, obvy).
Leaving the baking ingredients in the open shelving was such a good move! It makes baking challah a total breeze. Also, shout out to Rachel Ray for teaching me to clean up and put ingredients back as I go (did anyone else watch 30 Minute Meals with Rachel Ray on the Food Network growing up?)
Tangent: I’ve also done a few little practical updates since I posted the kitchen makeover, like using twine to tie the pot-holders to the oven handle, and moving our wooden tray from the living room to on top of the microwave, creating a perfect place for our cutting boards and drying rack. I’m obsessed with making spaces adorable, sparse (and therefore easy to clean), and functional. Thank you Marie Kondo for the Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (read my review of that book here!).
Anyways, I hope to bake challah more often now that my kitchen feels really functional and like a real happy place, especially knowing our coworkers are into it.
(Screenshot below of text convo between hubs and I on Friday. We each took a loaf to work and both were almost gone by lunch time! win.)
The other day when I was baking challah I opted for the denim apron (super cute when wearing leggings, and when home for the evening, when are you not wearing leggings? #AmIRight?). I then had the ingenious idea to put a kitchen towel across the lap region, securing it with the apron string, and rocking a side bow. I think this will now be my preferred apron wearing method. It makes me feel like Belle in Beauty and the Beast, and who wouldn’t want that?
6. I have a temper.
Sometimes I feel like my blog only paints the “pretty” picture of me, largely because I want my little corner of the internet to be a positive, uplifting space.
But if someone really pisses me off, it is entirely possible that I will lash out or go on a schooling rant on impulse. It’s kind of an embarrassing quality, but I am who I am. I’m not sure if I should apologize for this aspect of my personality, or embrace it. Probably a little of both. It’s a nuanced issue. On one hand, owning my voice as a feminist, jewish, educated woman is important to me. On the other hand, I don’t want to make others feel uncomfortable…
7. I collect heart-shaped rocks.
I have mentioned this atleast once on the blog. Current count: 4. Each rock (and pinecone) have a significant story associated, but for the sake of ever getting around to finishing this post, I’ll save that for another time.
Btw… is it just me or did Jesus’s face appear in this rock? I swear to god it wasn’t always there… #cray
8. I am somewhere between a minimalist, and someone who really appreciates beautiful things.
Take Chanukah for example.
You may notice a slight variation on the amount of gifts. I enjoy both fireplace scapes so much. I do think it is important to be minimalist about a lot of things, but I don’t see anything wrong with placing value on objects either. I’ve done a lot of reading/listening/learning of minimalist ideology, taking what resonates with me and leaving what doesn’t.
9. My childhood nicknames include Tazmanian Devil, Ninja Turtle, Energizer Bunny, Beckanoo, Beckynu, and just “nu” for short.
10. I have to read or listen to a book on audio before I can watch a movie or TV series based off of it. No exceptions.
11. I am happier than I once thought ever possible.
If you are a reader who is in a dark place, trust that it can and will get better. Seek out resources (btw, please know I’d be honored to be a resource- not an empty statement). I’m not an expert, and lord knows I have my days, but there are far more good days than bad. Always learning how to not let bad moments become bad days, and not let bad days become bad weeks, etc.
My Liebster Award Nominations:
AKA Kitchen Bitch – A friend in real life who has seriously amazing recipes and is just in general an amazing person.
Blissful Britt – A fellow PNW blogging soul sister (is that weird to say? Probably. Oh well, said it.)
Confessions of a Product Junkie – A gal who was an acquaintance throughout my youth/friend of my cool older sister who has seriously great taste.
The Constant Wanderings – An old summer camp cabinmate who travels the world and who has a way with the pen.
Rain on a Tin Roof – A random gem of a blog find, who Inspired me to update my “About” page, and has such good DIY design inspiration.
Runners Being Blog – A virtual running friend who lives in, I want to say Sweden? Who keeps it refreshingly real while also covering crazy mileage and is a run-to-work commuter, a rare breed for sure.
Sarah Fit – Primary social media presence is on YouTube, but also love her blogs. Great content, and cute baby too.
This Runner’s Recipes – Another PNW runner and running coach, with amazingggg content on all things running.
Uproot Kitchen – A friend in real life who largely inspired me to get started with blogging. She has awesome recipes, and I just generally love her blog and outlook on living a healthy and balanced life.
Alright, my questions I’m asking to the bloggers I’m nominating for the Liebster Award:
1. What are your childhood nicknames?
2. Who are the best authors you’ve discovered in the past twelve or so months?
3. If you could travel anywhere for a vacation today, where would you go?
4. Favorite color(s)?
5. What is your ideal date night?
6. What are some foods you don’t like?
7. Favorite item of clothing you own?
8. Favorite household item you own?
9. Most used kitchen appliance, excluding your fridge?
10. Best weekend vacation you have taken in the last twelve months?
11. Why was it the best?
And there you have it. I hope this post wasn’t a total snoozer of a read. If you made it this far, thanks so much for reading! And thanks to all the bloggers I nominated for creating awesome content. Keep on keepin’ on, friends.