five... eleven... I'm bad at math // a liebster post

Because all the cool kids (like Michelle and Natalie and Sydney) were doing it, I decided to jump on the train and play the "five things" game (It's a game... on a train... I mean, apparently anyway...) and give myself a reason to share a few random tidbits. 

But then, then, the sweet Naomi of Patterned Love nominated me for a Liebster Award (a kind nod to bloggers with less than 200 followers - all hail the little guys!) (and thank you, Naomi!) and I thought, hey, why stop at five (because this deal demands 11) so, boom, here goes... Oh, and this is a long one so... Yeah... Apologies...

(( more after the jump ))

(sidenote: now that I'm thinking on it, I think I remember sweet Stacia over at Free To Be Stacia Lee nominating me for this a couple of years ago and I had noooo idea what it meant and I sort of dropped the ball so thank you to Stacia for believing in me all that time ago and here's my redemption!)


The Rules for Nominated Person:

1. Post 11 things about yourself.

2. Answer 11 questions from the blogger who nominated you.

3. Nominate 11 more bloggers.

4. Ask 11 questions for your nominees.


part one
(( 11 things about myself ))

1// I love God. And I haven't always been able to say that. My whole life I had relied on Him and appreciated Him and never once doubted His love for me (I even wrote my college admissions essay for Pepperdine on that subject) but to be able to say that I  love Him? That was something I always struggled with. Sure I liked Him well enough, but it made me feel like a phony to say I loved God because He wasn't a top priority in my life. I never took the time to invest in our relationship, taking it entirely for granted instead. I wanted so desperately to be one of those people who could say with such certainty they loved God, but the words always felt false on my tongue. But when the bottom fell out from my world and I found myself at my lowest, I looked up and there He was. And about a year ago, I finally got it. And I experienced that feeling of falling in love with the One who promised to never leave me, never give up on me, and never forget the promises He made me. And it was the best feeling in the world. 

2// I hate card games. They make me cry. Seriously. Beyond Go Fish, I am completely unable to wrap my head around the rules of card games (this includes all card-based drinking games which I basically hate anyway because I'm not really into that whole "drink to get drunk" deal - never was, never will be). Many people have tried to teach me many games and every time I border on hyperventilation because I can't seem to understand it. So while I love watching people play (truly get a kick out of it, and I love photographing games), I can't handle actually playing.

3// I was given a shotgun at  around age 10. I grew up in a hunting and fishing kind of family (while most families on the block spent their summer vacations in Hawaii or somewhere equally tropical and lush, we were the family that roadtripped it to middle-of-nowhere Utah for annual fishing trips - no complaints here). My dad was a competitive shooter back in the day (still goes out shooting and hunting with his buddies every chance he gets) and when I was a wee lass my grandpa gave me a 20 gauge shotgun that had been in the family for decades (I'm actually a little shaky on the full history of said firearm - dad, shoot me an email with some specifics after you've read this!) Anyway, while it's been a few years since I've actually shot my gun, more and more lately I'm getting curious about it again. 

4// My favorite authors vary from time to time, but my go-tos are always Kurt Vonnegut, Roald Dahl and Francis Chan. How's that for variety? I remember sitting at Red Hills Market one night where I ended up chatting with our (now) cellar master from the winery and how throughout the course of our conversation I had apparently mentioned that I'm a christian and also adored Kurt Vonnegut. I remember he actually stopped me as he tried to digest that apparent contradiction in his mind, as though the two should have been mutually exclusive. I, on the other hand, had never thought about it like that. But there it is: my favorite authors write about the disturbing aspects of "the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith", the adventures of the"greatest fornicator of all time", and the crazy, unfathomable love of the Creator of the universe, respectively. Go figure. 

5// If there's one gift I am grateful for, it's my patience. I am one of the most patient people of all time when it comes to being patient with people. Truthfully, I never thought about it until a friend pointed out. Now patience for other things in life? Eh, not so much. But with people, it takes a whoooole lot to push me over the edge. While there may be a slight natural tendency there, as I get older and (fortunately/unfortunately) have seen some of the uglier sides of human nature, much of it is a purposeful, deliberate patience. Often when people deserve it least. Because that's when they need it most. I believe that to be a Christian we are to live as much like our God as we humanly can (which granted, we will always fail at, but as Believers we hold ourselves to that standard out of love for God and all of His creation). In doing so, the phrase from Exodus 34v6-7 "slow to anger, abounding in love" has become one of the most meaningful in all the Bible. Remember it next time you're about to lose your cool. Love like He loves us. 

6// I fully rejoice in the rough patches. Even though yes, clearly, I hate going through them, there is no way in hell I'd be who I am, or where I am, today without them. If this seems like a resounding "duh" I'm with you on that. But too often we only look back on the hardness of it all, the hurt and the pain and that unbearable weight of it all and miss out on the joy that comes from weathering the storm. We harden ourselves to the silver lining and as a result, don't allow ourselves to grow from it. And what good does that do us? Face your trials head on. Brace yourself for it as best you can, surround yourself with an army of friends, family and hope and hold fast. Trust that you can take it. And be grateful for the strength you have been given to do so. You will be changed by it, no doubt, but only you get to decide if you'll be changed for the better.

7// I don't try to remember random trivia, but I do. I sincerely wish when someone asked our group a few weeks ago, "Hey, what's Jay Z's real name?" that I hadn't known the answer (or that I hadn't blurted it out). Things just stick in my brain. It's a whole world of useless information up there. 

8// I think in prose. Not all the time, but quite often I'll find myself sort of narrating my actions as though I were reading through my day in novel form. It's weird, I've done it for as long as I can remember and I have no idea I'm doing it until I realize I'm thinking in the third person. Am I the only writer who has experienced this particular schizophrenia? 

9// I was 26 before some nice fellow at a bar bought me a drink (yes, this was last week). Jodi and I were treating ourselves to a little happy hour at Oswego Grill (holy fried calamari, Batman) when the bartender poured us each another glass of wine from "an anonymous stranger". Now for that lovely lady, it was nice to be sure, but no great thrill. Me? I giggled like a schoolgirl and checked another item off my "Late Bloomer" list. Am I the only girl on the planet who has not experienced this particular form of flattery before? 

10// I have traveled reasonably far and wide. England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Italy, France, Greece, Turkey and Mexico. And while of course I love traveling with someone, I do have a particular fondness for traveling alone. When I flew to England a couple of years ago it was one of the single most cathartic experiences of my life. Bumming around a city of over 7 million by myself made London even more special to me. Being alone as I traveled to the edge of the North Sea made it so much more meaningful. I loved it. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. If you've never traveled alone, I highly recommend it. There is something so uniquely liberating in it. You get to know yourself better (which sounds so trite, but I mean it). 

11// Even growing up in a hunting and fishing kind of family, I had never been properly camping until I was 25. I had always wanted to go, but never had the opportunity (my parents are not the camping types - we were more the log cabin in the woods kind of family). So when  a friend of mine invited me to Colorado to take me out for the first time, I was all over that. We packed up his truck, hitched up the boat and were off to not only my first camping adventure, but the sight of the worst sunburn of my life (if I listen closely, I can still hear him laughing about that). Now though, especially since finding this place, I'm itching to get out there again. Mari and I are already plotting our next trip. 

part two
(( 11 questions from the blogger who nominated you ))

1// Tell a "Most Awkward" situation story:
You mean like the time I got frustrated with the person driving in front of me on the winding two lane country road (making it unsafe to try and pass) so I decided to mildly tailgate only to find out we were going to the same place and she practically owns the winery just down the road from us? You mean awkward like that?

2//  Favorite movie:
Changes with the moon and tides. But one long-time, always up for it, recommend it to anyone favorite is The Philadelphia Story. I even named my first car after Cary Grant's character C.K. Dexter Haven.

3// Who is nearest and dearest to you and why:
I suppose I'm pretty blessed to be honestly able to say I couldn't narrow this down to just one person if my life depended on it.

4// What is your most meaningful memory:

5// What is your most comfy outfit that still looks put together:
Black pants, chambray shirt, cognac flats or boots. It basically feels like pajamas (is this the blogger uniform, or what?) but throw on some jewelry or a scarf and BAM! Outfit!

6// Where would you go back to if time travel was a real option:
Mid-late 19th century Concord, Massachusetts so I could hang out with Louisa May Alcott, Thoreau, Emerson. Or, roughly the same time period only in England so I could see the Pre Raphaelites in action... Or truly, to the time of Christ, because I can't imagine anything more insanely amazing than to see that story unfolding.

7// Favorite accessory:
My great grandmother's diamond and sapphire ring. It's been in my mother's family for five generations. I wear it every day.

8// What is your least favorite part about getting ready in the morning:
That whole getting-up-when-the-alarm-goes-off thing.

9// Pet peeve & why:
GRAMMAR. Or lack thereof. For the record: "her & I" is never correct. Neither is "here is a photo of Joe & I". Take the other person out of the sentence and see if it still sounds correct. You would never say, "here is a photo of I" therefore the proper way to phrase it is, "here is a photo of Joe & me." This is the tip of the iceberg. But it makes me crazy. I wish it didn't jump out at me whenever I read anything, but it does and it makes me feel violent. Someone get me a leather strap to bite down on. 

10// Do you have a bucket list? If yes, what are two of the randomest things on the list? If no, what are two random things you want to do before you die:
I don't have a bucket list, but if I do or become nothing else in this life, I want to be a good wife and a good mother. Sure, I want to do well in my career, I want to travel and experience the world, all the usual things but above all else, I know I want those two things someday. Not today, not even anytime soon necessarily. But someday. 

11// Greatest fear:
Not being able to accomplish #10 and never being able to fully trust God's timing. 
I need to get out of my own way.

part three

((nominate 11 other bloggers))

Jenn // Life with the Lieutenant
Kate // Daffodil's (she has more than 200, but I'm pretty sure I've known her since the days of 200!)
Brigette // Just A Smidge
Catherine // The Yale Chapter
Stephanie // Adventures of an Artist, Wife & Mom
Holly // Little Miss Holls (also a few over 200, but see above reasoning!)
Jodi // Arthur & Lancelot's Adventures
Martha // A Softer Side of Strong (no idea how many followers she has, but she needs to be on this list)
Allie // Faith, Trust & Pixie Dust
Mari // The Unexpected Harvest
Erin // If I Blogged, Which I Don't

 part four
((answer these 11 questions))

1// Five years ago, what did you think your life would be like now?
2// Why did you move to the place you currently live?
3// Favorite book?
4// What fictional character do you most identify with?
5// Describe the overall "feel" of your home.
6// Biggest risk you've ever taken
7// Do you prefer sweet treats or savory snacks?
8// Do you like to cook? What's your favorite thing to make?
9// One quote to sum up your worldview: go!
10// Early bird or night owl?
11// What would your personal theme song be?


If any of you take me up these nominations shoot me an email or tweet to let me know because I seriously want to know your answers to these questions (they were thought up with you guys in mind!)


  1. I'm so glad you tagged me - I'll definitely fill this out :) Just give me a little time on it, haha - I gotta think of some reallllll good answers!

    I love all your answers! Let's hang out soon! ;)

  2. Aww, I love reading these things! Thanks for tagging me...I've been such a terrible blogger lately, but I'll definitely try to do this! : )

    P.S. LOVE that scarf!

  3. i was running this morning and a lady said to me as i passed her car good morning jesus loves you and my immediate response was you too because it is true he does love each and everyone of us and i feel fortunate enough to love him back truly and honestly