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Liebster Part 2

Here is the second part of my Liebster post appreciation.  I thanked Cabin Pressure May Change and Art Catalysts by KathyClem in my previous post, and now want to thank The Zombies Ate My Brains for my third nomination.  Their questions for me:

  1. Keaton or Chaplin? I’m not sure which is the right answer, but I’m going to have to go with Chaplin.  He wrote Smile, after all.
  2. How many times a day do you check your email? Since I got a smart phone, too many.
  3. Do you have a pet?  Is it on your lap/laptop at the moment? I have four pets, and surprisingly none of them are in physical contact with me at this moment.
  4. Do your friends/family/associates read and follow your blog? Not at this time.
  5. Does the fact that your friends/family/associates read and follow your blog make a difference to how or what you write?  I’d like to think it wouldn’t
  6. When you are on hold waiting for the customer service rep to come back with the answer, how do you pass the time? I always seem to get pulled into kid emergencies every single time I’m on the phone.
  7. Do you consider blogging a hobby or a job? Hobby
  8. Introvert or extrovert? Definitely an introvert, although at first those who meet me are surprised by this.
  9. This Liebster thing is a lot of work, do you agree? A little bit, yeah.
  10. Do you forgive me? Completely.

Again, thanks to all three folks that nominated me.  It’s nice to know that this early on, people are finding and taking the time to check out my blog.

Truthfully I’ve been a little remiss at finding new blogs, and if I would name 10 right now I’d probably be renominating several that have very recently received this award. Here are a few that caught my eye for one reason or another.

Monkey and Squish

The Incident-prone SAHM

Fonts and Frosting

This Crazy Little Farm

I know it’s far from 10, but I hope the blogging spirits will forgive me and I promise I’ll find another way to pay it forward.  Here are my questions for those above:

  1. What is your comfort food?
  2. Is there someone in the media who really makes you laugh?  Who is it?
  3. What is your favorite time in history?
  4. Why?
  5. What’s your favorite season?
  6. Pie or cake?
  7. What was the last book you read?
  8. To where do you most want to travel?
  9. When do you most feel in your element?
  10. When do you most feel out of it?

liebster

Just a review of the rules: 

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.

What happens when you go to bed early

Wow, I go to bed at 9:00 pm and wake up with three nominations to for the Liebster award, which is thrilling, and just the kind of encouragement I need after a harried morning battling dishes and children’s outerwear.liebster

Here are the rules attached the Liebster award:

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.

I’m going to thank all three of my nominators and do my best to answer their questions.  Hopefully all of you reading will not get bored with hearing me talk directly about myself.

First, thank you Cindy at Cabin Pressure May Change.  I’ve loved what I’ve read at her blog, and the tagline, “getting just to whelmed,” makes me smile.

  1. Why did you start your blog? – I wanted to put down reflections and accounts of my everyday life, to remember how full my days are, even when they’re full of normal stuff
  2. What is your favorite thing  about having a blog? – It makes me take time to think
  3. What do you do for fun? – Projects!  I love to work on my house, and I love to spend time in my kitchen.
  4. What is your favorite book? – How do I pick just one?  I cannot.  I’ve been on a Willa Cather kick lately, so for now I’ll say My Antonia.
  5. What is your favorite movie? – Same issue as above.  There are those that I love from childhood, those I watch when I want to laugh, those for when I want to cry.  I love the classics though, and I often turn to My Man Godfrey when I’m in a bad mood and need some cheering up.
  6. If you had really good news to share who would you call first? My husband.
  7. On your 85th birthday what do you hope your loved ones are saying about you as they celebrate your life so far? That they know what I believe by how I live, and that I make the best cakes and pies.
  8. Thinking back to the last time you laughed so hard you couldn’t breathe, what was so funny? I try to laugh a lot, I’m sure the last time it had to do with Parks and Rec.
  9. Thinking back to the last time you cried, what moved you? I cry a lot.  I have a tendency to take stories and images too far sometimes.  I was crying in the library last Friday as I finished reading Death Comes for the Archbishop.
  10. What is one of your favorite quotes? ” I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.” – E.B. White

Next, a thank you to Kathy, at Art Catalysts by KathyClem, a visual artist and a poet (mediums that blend so well together, don’t you think?)

  1. When did you start your blog? I first opened this blog last August, but didn’t start posting to it until the beginning of this month.
  2. What made you do the Zero to Hero challenge? I needed some motivation to get in gear, and some guidance learning about WordPress
  3. Do you have any pets? Four: two cats, two dogs.  Why?  Because I’m crazy.
  4. What is your favorite hobby? Baking and building, but my baking seems to be more appreciate by my kids.
  5. What do you do most of the day?
  6. Do you believe in Magic? Yes, emphatically.  Magic is one language we can use to describe the world, and it’s one of my favorites.
  7. If you could have another life, what would you be? I love to imagine living in New England or somewhere in the United Kingdom. Perhaps on a farm.
  8. Why?  I love trees and fields and a sense of history.  The romantic in me loves the idea of making things from the earth.
  9. How big is your immediate family? There are 5 of us.
  10. What do you like about writing? Writing is deliberate.  So much of my time I feel like I’m in reaction mode.  Writing for me is the opposite.

I’m not squelching on the other responsibilities for accepting this award, but right now this is looking like a lot of text.  I will put part two up thanking the third blogger and post my questions and nominees very soon.

New Bookclub

I recently joined a book club, the first book club I’ve ever joined.  It’s called “The Fun Book Club.”  I have several issues with the name, but I understand the intent.  Apparently the woman who organized it belonged to another book group in our neighborhood that only read serious, often depressing, books about past and present problems in the world.  She wanted one that offered an escape from this world, so this has a focus on sci-fi and fantasy.  All of this is fine with me, but I am sort of concerned that the majority of the books were are reading are 1) seem to only be books that are being turned into movies and 2) all fit into the genre of Young Adult.  Don’t get me wrong, I think there’s some great YA fiction out there, but this is where I have issues with our group’s moniker.  “Fun” does not have to mean an easy read.  A book that challenges you either through its style or theme can still be fun.  I’m not suggesting that we crack open Dostoyevsky each month, but if the first thing someone tells me about a book it that it is such an easy read, chances are it’s not going to be on my To Be Read list anytime soon.

We just finished reading The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.  I’m horrible at writing about books (a skill I hope to practice), but a one line summary could be : a circus unlike any other serves as a venue for a strange competition of magic between two young, and sometimes hesitant, participants.  The settings in the books were amazing, and you can tell the author had a lot of fun with them.  I imagined Cirque du Soleil doing a show celebrating the imagery of Tim Burton.  Character development, on the other hand, seemed lacking. At the end of the book, I found that I didn’t really care what happened to the two protagonists.  Not that I disliked them, I just didn’t feel like I’d gotten to know them personally and didn’t have anything at stake in their outcomes.  

I’m not sure if there was a general consensus as to whether we liked the book or not.  Some people were frustrated by the fact that it jumped around in time.  Some thought that the ending seemed forced.  All in all, I thought it was enjoyable.  I didn’t get home from the discussion until after 1:00 am and several glasses of wine, so maybe the name “The Fun Bookclub” is more appropriate than I thought.

Day 8: The “About” Page

Today we were to tackle our “about” page, a task I’ve been putting off because, you know, it’s hard.  I’ve been doing everything I could to not start working on it, even choosing the dirty dishes in the sink over the keyboard on the desk.  How can I express the different sides of my personality without letting one dominate?  It definitely deserves some revisiting, but at least I have something up.  Let me know what you think:  https://complexitythroughjoy.wordpress.com/about/

On My Mind

E.B. White once wrote that the theme of his life is complexity through joy.  That resonated with me years ago, and even more so now.  I want to expound more on his words, but my own aren’t here right now.  I’ll just say that my life is fairly simple.   I spend a great deal of my time in my neighborhood and in my home.  By my own making, my calendar is fairly open and loose.  As Thoreau suggested, I “let my affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand.”  This works for me.

When I look at my life on a daily basis, I am for the most part satisfied.  Sure, there are some days that I waste.  Days I feel bad or lazy or in an apathetic mood.  However, most of my days are quite full.  Yes, full of dishes and laundry, but also full of children and friends and baking and whatever the new thing I’ve decided to get into lately is.  When I examine a year of my life, I don’t get the same sense of satisfaction.  Too often I look back and think more of what didn’t happen:  the trips I didn’t take, the projects I didn’t complete, the money I didn’t make.  The year seems filled with lots of empty time that I guarantee I didn’t feel I had when I was in the midst of it.

That’s one thing I’m hoping to get out of this blogging experience.  A reminder of how full my everydays are.

Day One

A new year, a new blog.  I’ve been batting the idea of starting a new blog for a little while, a little unsure as to whether I would commit, but apparently, I have done so.  These few sentences have launched me into a new project, hobby, timesuck; however you look at it.  Apparently, the new year is a popular time to launch new blogs. WordPress even has a challenge to help get you going, for which I am grateful.  It’s actually Day 5 of the challenge, so I have some catching up to do.

I like to write, but I am terrible at keeping a personal journal.  I think for the reason that it is so much easier to write to an audience.  Even an audience of imaginary readers who may or may not stumble across my words and find something that resonates with them.  I also need to write.  Not in the burning, need to express myself, passionate sort of way.  Rather, I’m a stay at home mom of three young kids, and writing full sentences, without mention of superheroes, Legos, or Pokemon, gives me a different sort of mental exercise than I normally get.

So here it goes.  I’ve not totally fleshed out the focus of my blog.  I’ve done that with blogs of the past and I ended up feeling beholden to the blog.  Baking things just so I could blog about them, kicking myself when I forgot to take a picture of some step of some project.  I am letting this one just be, and I will see what comes out of it.