Two wonderful bloggers, Jenny of Peace From Panic and Lisa of From Dream to Plan, nominated me for the Leibster Award. To be entirely honest, Jenny nominated me months ago, back in March, and there are really no excuses for how long it took me to finish answering all of her excellent questions. I am very flattered to be recognized by these two exceptionally special writers. They both share their wholehearted selves through their fabulous and engaging blogs, which I encourage everyone to visit!
The guidelines for the award are pretty straightforward.
- Thank the person who nominated you, and tag him or her in your post. (Thank you Jenny and Lisa!)
- Answer the 11 questions asked of you.
- Nominate 5-11 other bloggers (ideally with 1000 or fewer followers), and inform them of their nominations.
- Create 11 new questions for your nominees to answer.
Because I was nominated twice, there are twice as many questions to answer, so I will get right to it! To begin, here are the questions that Jenny asked…
- Why did you start your blog?
Messages encouraging the use of disordered eating, the promulgation of unrealistic body expectations, and the promotion of unhealthy relationships with food and exercise are the norms in our culture and society. I wanted to offer a different voice and to document my journey through recovery from my eating disorder. You can read about my motivation here.
- What book are you reading now and do you recommend it?
I am always reading more than one book at a time. Right now, my three are The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion, by Christopher Germer, Seven Storey Mountain, by Thomas Merton, and Eating Disorders: A Guide to Medical Care and Complications, by Philip S. Mehler, MD, and Arnold E. Anderson, MD. I would recommend the first two, unequivocally. The third book is one that I am reading for work, and I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it for general reading.
- What does your favorite coffee or tea mug look like?
It would be impossible to choose a favorite. Right now, because it is autumn (my favorite season!), I am enjoying my owl-shaped coffee mug tremendously. 😍
- Do you prefer modern or traditional art?
- Retail shopper or online shopper?
Both. The convenience of online shopping is great, but when it comes to buying clothing, I to be able to touch the fabric and to feel my body in the clothes.
- If you could do something really adventurous, and knew you’d be okay, what would it be?
- What is the kindest compliment anyone can give you?
That I am kind-hearted and loving. That I am living out my values. (But only if it was true and not just flattery!)
- Are you athletic? Favorite sport?
Ummm… define “athletic.” I love to bike, swim, and practice yoga, because they are fun and enjoyable activities. They also keep my body healthy and leave me feeling refreshed and alive. For a long time, I was addicted to running. My therapist and psychiatrist are working with me to develop a healthier relationship with running. For several years, I quit it entirely while I allowed my mind and body to heal. A month or two ago, I ran a quarter mile and then worked my way up to a half, but now I am nursing some badly bruised/strained feet. So the running is still TBD.
- What is your favorite quote?
- How have other bloggers encouraged you?
The blogging community here at WordPress is such a blessing! The comments that I receive are amazingly supportive. Other bloggers challenge me to think in different ways. I find inspiration, I am reminded of my values, and I am drawn back to what is most important through the comments left on my blog and the posts of other writers. I don’t think its exactly what Dr. Barbara Fredrickson meant when she decribed positivity resonance (I think that requires a face-to-face encounter), but it must come close.
- Imagine a peaceful place. What does it look/feel like?
There is a safe place that I go to in my mind when I’m meditating, where I sit beside a gentle brook, under a giant, leafy tree. The sun is shining through the leaves, sending dappled light across the water and the thick, green, grass. Those same leaves ruffle in a gentle breeze, while the brook babbles happily.
Ok, onto Lisa’s questions…
- What’s a funny travel story you will never forget? Personally experienced or not.
I honestly can’t think of a single thing! Isn’t that terrible? There are so many amazing memories, but they aren’t necessarily funny. At least, they certainly wouldn’t seem funny to other people. I think most of my travel stories are the, “You really had to be there…” sort. Maybe, in some ways, those are the best kind.
- What’s your favorite recipe not from your home country?
Pumpkin soup from Germany! It’s unlike any pumpkin or squash soup I ever tasted in the U.S. I actually don’t know the secret to the recipe, or what makes it so incredible. It is simply delicious! I also love rice pudding, which you can find here in the States, but which always tastes better in Britain. Mmmmm… and croissants. Alas, Americans do not know how to make a good croissant. Or how to brew a good cup of coffee! Now my mouth is watering.
- If you could travel to one city or country right now, where would it be?
This question is easy to answer, though the response may not be what my readers would expect. Although my recent writings are all about Paris, the ONE place I want to be more than anywhere else right now is… Germany!!! There is nowhere quite like southern Germany on the edge of the Black Forrest in the fall. Mmmmm… I can taste the pumpkin soup! My heart flutters when I think of the changing trees along all the little hills and valleys. I have this very distinct memory of the landscape emerging from a dawn fog, me staring out the back window of Helene’s little BMW, the road winding along from Stuttgart to Zurich early one morning… It was heaven!
- What is your favorite way to travel? (Bike / train / plane / walking, etc.)
YES. (All of the above)
- Why did you start writing your blog?
- What movie could you watch over and over again and still love?
The Lord of the Rings (any of the three)
- Do you have a favorite quote?
Nope! There are too many good ones to pick just one.
- Would you call yourself an indoor person or an outdoor person?
I need a little of both to remain in balance. Without nature, I would suffocate. The beauty of God’s created world puts a song in my heart, inspires gratitude, and centers my soul. Yet, there are times when nothing is as restorative as a cozy afternoon or evening spent indoors.
- How do you get motivated to work toward your goal(s)/target(s)/ambition(s)?
That is a really great question, and it is perhaps impossible for me to answer! If I knew exactly how to motivate myself, I might be much farther along this path of life. I think that I have a naturally curious and driven mind, but being so driven can also lead me to quickly become overwhelmed, resentful, and angry. I suppose that I would say the thing that helps most is loads of therapy! There was a time that I was ashamed of my tendency toward distraction, depression, anxiety, my propensity to leave projects half-done, and all my other faults and failures. It took some pretty devastating major life events to turn my way of thinking on its head. I think pursuing a goal starts with embracing my whole self – all of my imperfect parts along with all of my strengths – and readily admitting that I do not possess all the answers that I need. The willingness to turn to others (like my therapist and a few very tried and true confidantes), to be humbly honest with myself, and to adjust my expectations to reflect my reality definitely helps.
- If you had to choose one country (aside from your own) to move to permanently, which would you choose?
Probably the UK. Of all my trips abroad, London was my favorite city.
- Where is your favorite place to be?
Hmmmm… I don’t know if I have one favorite place. For me, it is less about the physical place than the memories, the experiences, and the people. Love. It all comes back to love.
The fun of the Leibster award is sharing it with others. I am passing along this award to the following nominees. I love to follow their insightful blogs. They each share a unique voice, and I hope that you will check out their sites. Below the list of nominees are my 11 questions to each of them.
- Laura from Laura Bruno Lilly
- Lauren from Milly’s Guide to Happiness
- Jenn from HealthyJenn
- Kristin Olivia from A Parody of Life
- Karen Lee from Finding Merle
- What is your favorite season?
- If you won the lottery and never needed to work again, what would you do with your time? Would you still want to work even if you didn’t have to?
- What is your favorite way to pass time or relax on a Saturday afternoon?
- Do you have any pets? What kind?
- Where is your ideal weekend getaway?
- Are you more of a city person, country person, or somewhere in between?
- Do you have a favorite television show? What is it?
- What was your favorite subject when you were in school?
- E-reader or old-fashioned book?
- Have you ever taken a road trip? Where did you go? What was it like?
- What is one piece of advice or wisdom that you hope your future self never forgets?
“An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.”
~ G.K. Chesterton