Sunday, June 9, 2013

Leibster Award: Giving and receiving a little blog love

It was late on Saturday night and I was in my dressing gown. I'd done a row of stitching on Dear Boy's quilt; I'd watched Dumbledore's death scene in The Half Blood Prince and the opening scenes of Mr and Mrs Smith. I was heading towards bed with a book. Then I saw a little message in my 'comments' tab - Morgan from Me and My House had nominated Lilybett and Boy (that's me!) for a blogging award. Normally I am pretty happy with just receiving comments. But this little bit of love is a sweet few inches of icing on that cake. 

The Liebster Award is given to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers (although I've cheating just a smidge when I've nominated mine). So, what is a Liebster?  The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. Isn't that sweet? Blogging is about building a community and it's a great way to connect with other bloggers and help spread the word about newer bloggers/blogs.

Here are the rules for receiving this award:
1. Each person must post 11 things about themselves.
2. Answer the questions that the tagger set for you plus create 11 questions for the people you’ve tagged to answer.
3. Choose 11 people to nominate and link them in your post.
4. Go to their page and tell them.
5. No tag backs!

11 Random Facts About Me:

1. I have won three blog competitions in the last three months. This is why a fluorescent Yoda is watching me as I type.
2. The last book I read was the first Jack Reacher novel and I kinda liked it. I'm saving the next two for a long-ish plane trip I'm taking in early July. I'm reading a SF series of Lovely Husband's in the mean time.
3. I have one tattoo that I got when I was 15. I wish I'd been a more inspired 15-year-old. Or at least a less impulsive 15 year old. I am thinking of getting another with an ancient Roman theme (related to Dear Boy's name) but in white. The high incidence of poor white tattoos, however, is not making me hurry.
4. I dream of singing in public. But I hate performing or being the centre of attention.
5. I am technically Doctor Lilybett. But not the kind of Doctor who can put up their hand if a flight assistant asks if there's a doctor on board. 
6. I would give up chocolate for the rest of my life if I could eat as much bread and cheese as I wanted without beginning to resemble a traditional wheel of Parmesan.
7. I bite my nails.
8. I love pretty much anything written by Aaron Sorkin: The West Wing; The American President; A Few Good Men; The Newsroom; Studio Sixty on the Sunset Strip, and to a lesser degree:
 Charlie Wilson's War, The Social Network and Sports Night. I love that every first season finale episode is called 'What kind of day has it been'. I love the in-jokes and the way The West Wing cast have spoofed their 'walk and talk' style in several ads.

9. I got a speeding ticket last month. For going 5km over the speed limit. I know there's no such thing as 'safe speeding' but this makes me want to be a very bad citizen, tear the traffic infringement notice up and mail it back to them covered in in black sharpie swear words. I HATE that I had to BPay some place called Civic Compliance Victoria. 
10. I don't own any Apple products. I don't like them. Every single Mac I used at uni crashed (one even went up in a puff of blue smoke), even the brand new pretty pink ones. I will never, ever queue for a piece of technology. Unless it was life-saving technology and someone I loved needed their life saved... and we somehow lived in a post-apocalyptic society where Medicare was no longer functional.
11. Currently sitting on my desk: phone, stack of books (half read, half not), camera, broken Peppa Pig book, instruction leaflet for a Weight Watchers ProPoints calculator, sharpie, LED torch, two blank birthday cards, yesterday's shopping list, three blue biros, Dear Boy's quilt, two presents for a pregnant friend, Sherlock season 2 DVD, twenty cents, wooden xylophone stick, roll of wrapping paper, sticky tape dispenser, pair of Dear Boy's socks, Mothers Day Classic medal and a small white mountain of tissues Dear Boy pulled from their box and that I can't be arsed shoving back in.

Questions for me to answer:

1. Who inspires you the most?
- Normally when I read really sweet or interesting blogs, I feel inspired to be more prolific or creative in my own. Normally when I read about awesome women helping other women around the world, I feel in love with humanity. But I'm just not feeling it much at the moment. Need to kick my butt out of my post Blog Every Day in May funk.

2. What is your earliest memory?
- Playing on the floor at my Grandmother's house and my father coming in and telling us that we're going to the hospital to meet my new brother. I'm not sure if this is the earliest, but it's the earliest I can accurately date.

3. What is your worst habit?
- Satisficing.

4. Something you can't leave the house without?
- I used to think it was my keys, but I locked Dear Boy and myself out of the house a few weeks ago and we just went along our merry way until Lovely Husband came home. 

5. What is something your readers would be surprised to know about you?
I feel a bit addicted to watching birth shows/documentaries after having Dear Boy. I love the original One Born Every Minute, although the US version disturbs me because so many of the women are encouraged to go for the epidural and lay on their backs. I am also watching The Midwives and Don't Just Stand There, I'm Having Your Baby. It's a weird guilty pleasure even though I think about this while I watch them. It also seems I'll watch most medical documentaries/reality shows the UK puts out - anything with Michael Mosley, 24 Hours in Emergency, Junior Doctors: Your Life in Their Hands, Embarrassing Bodies... although that last one is the only one I ever catch on actual TV. The others I watch on SBS On Demand or ABC iview when the boy naps or during my lunch break at work. I just make sure I use my headphones so the women's screams and moans don't echo down the corridor. 

6. Your favourite food?
- My favourite are those bits and pieces mezze/antipasto/tapas style meals where you can pick and dip and choose. Throw in lots of crusty bread and things I can eat with my fingers and I'm in heaven. When we do it at home it consists of bread, olives, hummus, baba ganoush (although we've never found one as awesome as the one from our old IGA in Newcastle), grilled haloumi, slices of crisp chorizo or soft prosciutto, grilled capsicum/eggplant/zucchini, and maybe a green salad and something to do with potato.

7. A perfect night out...
- I feel like such an old lady but a perfect night out would probably be a homemade dinner with my extended family and then retiring to a luxury hotel suite all by myself and really living it up with a long bath with a book, and then a few star-fishes on the bed before sleeping undisturbed for the first night in a long, long time.

8. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
- If I could remove the civil and political and cultural issues that currently make it impossible for me to go there now, I would love to wander around the sites of ancient Mesopotamia between the Tigris and Euphrates (in modern day Iraq, and bits of Syria, Turkey and Iran) and ancient Persia, especially Persepolis (in modern day Iran). I want to see the origins of writing. Unfortunately, quite a lot of the cultural sites I want to see and that I studied in my Ancient History classes (and that my Ancient History teacher was fortunate enough to visit and photograph in all their glory) have been destroyed in the last few decades in various conflicts and for cultural/political reasons.

9. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
- The only thing I know for sure is that I'll be a mother of a school-aged Dear Boy, so I think I'll be doing school-gate drop-offs and pick-ups. A year or two ago, I gave myself five years to get an ongoing position in my current career. Given university funding is only getting worse, I suspect in five years time from now I will have just finished retraining to be/do something different. 

10. If your life were a musical, what song would you choose as your big solo?
- I would love to say something that would be big and ballsy and memorable like the 'Diamonds are a girls best friend' scene from Some Like It Hot or 'La Vie Boheme' from Rent. I'd even settle for a dive bar torch number like 'Miss Celie's Blues' in The Color Purple, but I suspect my own musical's solo would be something more daggy and uncool like 'Girl for all Seasons' from Grease 2 or 'Wonderful Day' from Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.

11. Your favourite blog?
- I'm not sure I have a single favourite, because I read lots of blogs for different reasons. I love the little snapshot of a life that Sash has created in Inked in Colour but I also love the way Maggie has translated Mighty Girl into bigger blogging communities and conferences of support and charity and hope. I admire most of the women who've made their blogs their living whether that's Dooce or Fat Mum Slim. I don't always feel blown away by every single post these women produce or always agree with their opinions on whatever topic they're discussed - but they all feel like people in my neighbourhood.

Questions for my nominees

1. How do you normally find new blogs to read?
2. What's your preferred leisure activity when you have a spare hour to yourself?
3. What's your guilty pleasure?
4. When and why did you start blogging?
5. What's in your handbag?
6. Name your three desert island albums or movies.
7. What philosophy do you live by?
8. Are you doing your dream job? If not, what is it?
9. Favourite item of clothing?
10. Favourite apps or programs for blogging/photography?
11. Describe your last 'aha' or 'forehead slap' moment.

My nominees (I'm cheating a little because some of these have over 200 followers)

Typically Red
Not Just a Mummy
Norfolk Exposure
Slapdash Mama
A Written Revolution
My Brown Paper Packages
Listen Sookie
Rubi Hoppen
Coal Valley View
Rock My Roll
Middle Class Mama's


  1. Hello, so nice to learn more about you. I'm a HUGE West Wing fan too!!! Thanks so much for nominating me. I have actually already had a Liebster in the past so not sure about the rules but will look into it. It also usually takes me ages to get around to doing these type of things....but thank you so much all the same. Have a lovely week! Mel x

    1. Isn't funny how small the blogging community can seem that these things come around again and again :)

      I'm looking forward to learning more about my nominees too!


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