Well, I am humbled, as well as super psyched, to be nominated for the Liebster Blogging Award (TWICE!). After working diligently on my blog since November, it is so nice to receive some recognition. Although it is not at all necessary: Writing is my thing, my calling, my favorite hobby, so recognition or not, I’m not going anywhere.
I want to thank Saturated in Seattle (saturatedinseattle.wordpress.com) for nominating me and being such an awesome source of encouragement. She never fails to leave me the most uplifting comments, and I just know we would be great friends if given the chance to meet in person. Please, check out her blog if you haven’t already. She challenges me in my faith with each post she writes. She talks about some extremely difficult topics, but you will only grow closer to God through her stories, as well as develop an immense amount of respect for her.
I also want to thank Gospel Isosceles (https://gospelisosceles.wordpress.com/) for nominating me for this award. She has been such a loyal follower; I get so excited when she comments on my work. As for her blog, just WOW. Her writing is top-notch. Plus she deals in prose and poetry, which I have not discovered many bloggers that do both. I also haven’t discovered any blog poetry that I like, except for Gospel Isosceles. Her faith intermingles challenging and thought-provoking material. Excellent stuff!
To both of these ladies: I would no doubt be nominating you if I was allowed! You are superb.
Now, I’m going to attempt to answer the 11 questions Saturated in Seattle asked me to cover on this post.
- How did you come up with your blog name?
Peace has always been a very difficult concept for me. Despite my tight relationship with Jesus, I have never fully experienced the way in which he calls himself the Prince of Peace. It is lost on me because I am not only a constant worrier, but I also suffer from anxiety. Anxiety has plagued me most of my life, but it has been more present in my day-to-day within the past three or four years, I suppose we can blame adulthood for that. It finally occurred to me one day that I do not have to live with anxiety. My children don’t need to know me as a mom who gets really anxious sometimes; my husband doesn’t need to take on the task of calming me when I need it. Instead, the Lord can and will heal me from this. Since adopting this belief, which I should have adopted long ago, I have gained an immense amount clarity , and even though I still have anxiety, I know the Lord will sustain me through it.
- Favorite thing about blogging?
I absolutely, positively love to write. I used to be an English teacher, before becoming a stay-at-home mom, and my decision to get an English degree really centered on my love for writing. However, I lost my passion for it when I got busy with college, and became even busier in my career. This stage of my life gives me ample time to nurture my passion, and it has come alive like never before. I can’t stop. I write in my sleep, while I do dishes, driving my son to the library. It can sometimes be quite torturous to be honest with you. My husband caught me the other day with my computer in the garage when I was SUPPOSED to be staining some wood for him. Whoops! I’ve no control.
- Hardest thing about blogging?
The hardest part about blogging is definitely the feeling that I should be reaching more people. I have a tendency, like all Christians, to follow God’s call and assume I know what He intends for it. He never fails to throw me a couple curve balls. It is hard not to become consumed with the number of likes, shares, and comments. It seems as though the posts that I am most confident in receive the least amount of feedback. It can be discouraging. It is easy to forget that I write for myself and for the glory of God. I tend to get caught up in writing for other people. However, I have learned that this is a HUGE no-no. It takes all the fun away when I’m just in it for the glory, and a word to the wise, there isn’t an immense amount of glory in blogging. So, I strive to maintain my passion and continue to post, ignoring my feedback for the most part (although it is so appreciated). I still get a huge thrill when someone likes my post. I’m sure my fellow bloggers can relate.
- Go to music?
I am a country girl through and through. I’ve known siblings and friends who have bounced between loving country and hating it, even betraying it by listening to–dare I say–mainstream pop (Ick). I can honestly say I have never not liked country. I like the new country and I like the old country. The lyrics make me happy. Also, when I do need a break from country on occasion, I will turn on KLOV, although, Christian music tends to drive me crazy. I know that makes me sound like a Heathen, but hey, it’s the truth.
- Who do you admire most? Why?
This is a tough question because there is so many answers depending on what avenue of my life I need mentoring. My go-to answer would absolutely be Jesus Christ. I strive and fail each and every day to model his behavior and love for other people. He is pretty much a rock star, and He is the best writer around. His words give me life every day, keep me going, and the imagery cannot be matched, even by Steinbeck. However, for those who want a more personal answer, I would have to say my husband. I know this is going to sound cliché, but seriously, trust me when I say: He is the most patient human being like EVER. I am an incredibly difficult person to live with and I have hardly ever seen him angry, at me or anyone else. This is not because he locks up his emotions; this is because he is honestly just a man at peace, something opposite of his wife, a woman at chaos. I can’t get him angry even when I try. He loves his family and provides for us in ways that I am abundantly thankful for. He has a faith in the Lord that inspires me every day. His knowledge of the Lord is also hugely inspiring, something I really strive for in my own life. He runs a store of 50 employees with ease, and comes home with a smile on his face and time and energy for his family (even when he has no time or energy). He’s the best.
- If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
Tulfes, Austria. Tulfes sits above Innsbruck, tucked into a mountainside. At least, this is how I remember it. I stayed at a hotel in Tulfes when my History teacher took a group of high school students to six European countries in 10 days. I have gained a lot of respect for this teacher since becoming a teacher myself. It was an incredible trip, but Tulfes, Austria calls to me. I will absolutely go back there someday.
- Would you rather live in the city or country?
This is a tough one. I grew up in a small town and hated the big city of Fargo, ND. However, now I live in Bismarck, ND and I absolutely love it. I have no desire to live in a small town anymore, which is more of a surprise to me than to anyone else. However, Bismarck, ND is more like a small town than a city to most parts of the country. I suppose I could be happy anywhere, except on a farm. I do not want to live on a farm.
- Favorite meal?
Tacos. Tacos. Tacos. Tacos. Tacos. When I am sad or sick or crabby or have any other type of ailment, my husband immediately jumps in the car to go get me a taco from Taco Bell. I’m not kidding. It has magical powers. Speaking of, I may need one tonight, since my son has basically cried all day long.
- One piece of advice you would give to a new blogger?
Hang in there. Blog often. Cultivate your passion. Don’t blog for other people. Write for yourself and for the glory of God. Celebrate when you receive feedback, but don’t depend on it. Don’t give up. It takes a while to gain any followers, but if you are consistently solid in your writing, they will come.
- If you had a free afternoon, how would you spend it?
I would spend a free afternoon reading at Barnes and Noble. It is one of the things I miss most about being childless. I used to spend hours and hours on end just hanging out in Barnes and Noble, or any other coffee shop for that matter. It is the most relaxing thing in the world to me. One day, I would love to find a tiny, quaint coffee shop and make it my office, spending day after day there writing a book. I think this is what I will do when my kiddos leave me.
- What is the last book you read? Would you recommend it?
The last book I read was I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai. It is a nonfiction story of a girl who grew up in a Taliban ruled nation, Pakistan, yet had the courage to stand up for education. She was shot in the head, but survived and continues to fight for what is right. Although it took me awhile to get through and bored me a bit at times, it was an excellent book. I would absolutely recommend it. This is what inspired my post Living Outside the Cocoon (https://pursuepeaceblog.wordpress.com/2016/04/05/living-outside-the-cocoon/).
The next thing I am to cover to accept my award nomination is 11 Facts about myself.
I love to hunt. I love to bike. I love to drink Dr. Pepper in extravagant amounts. I love pigs. I love to ski. I love people.
I won 8th place in a greased pig wrestling contest when I was roughly 13 years old. I had a partner. She did most of the work. I’m slightly petite. Not much of a pig wrestler.
I rode a pig through a pig barn for WAY more than 8 seconds when I was a kid. I broke my foot, but gained a lifetime of pig showing glory.
I am a freelance writer for a local magazine, and I am constantly on the prowl for more opportunities.
I used to be a pretty good runner. I’m not anymore. Although the worse the weather, the better my run, every time.
I am attempting to start a ministry titled Casseroles for Small Souls where a group of women would provide dinner for any woman who has lost a child through miscarriage. The casseroles would be provided for a week and contain enough food for her family. She would also be assured that we would be praying fervently for her during this time. If you’re interested in knowing more, comment below 🙂
My favorite Bible verse is Isaiah 41:10, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Before I met my husband, I used to hang out regularly with 60-something couples and play Farkle. Yes, I do have friends my own age. In fact, one such couple (his grandparents) introduced us through a set-up disguised as a game night.
The greatest thrill on this earth is a snow day. Hands down. Who’s with me!?!
I have the absolute, most horrifyingly unique dreams of any one on the planet. I scare my husband nearly every day with my renditions of them. I don’t know what this says about me, but man, I am never bored when I’m sleeping.
Jesus is my Lord and Savior. He is the King of my life and my absolute go-to guy for (nearly) everything. He gives me rest. He quenches my thirst. He provides me with wisdom. He has saved me over and over and over and over. Without faith, I would be unsure of everything. My life would have no meaning. I would have no hope. I don’t understand how anyone in the world functions without it.
The following blogs deserve much more recognition than my own. Each post is consistently chocked full of wisdom, talent, and entertainment.
- Missing Eden (https://missingeden.wordpress.com/)–She never fails to inspire and equip me with wisdom and tips for being a good stay-at-home mom. She faces trials herself, yet is so insightful concerning the trials of other moms. Every time I read a post, I find myself taking a sigh of relief toward the end. Excellent!
- Beauty Beyond Bones (https://beautybeyondbones.com/)– This girl finds some crazy interesting things to write about concerning her faith and how to incorporate it into the world around her. She has struggled with an eating disorder, but her posts are for anyone who seeks the Lord. She always introduces me to a new perspective that I have not considered, but I’m so glad she opens my eyes.
- Accidentally Single Blog (https://accidentallysingleblog.wordpress.com/) — I basically respect the crap out of this particular blog because for a long time, before I found my husband, I thought I would have to face the world as a single gal. She has such a positive outlook, and the humor she incorporates keeps me reading.
- Fire and Ink from the North Dakota Plains (https://stephenarthurlarson.wordpress.com/) — Although I may be cheating a little (since this particular blogger attends my church), this is a man after the Lord’s heart, not to mention His truth. Stephen writes about very difficult topics that all Christians should be seriously considering. He is knowledgeable and will challenge you to consider your Christian morals in reference to the struggles our nation faces. His witty personality shines through in each post, however, and he is quite exciting to read!
- Jessica Buczek (https://jessicabuczek.wordpress.com/)— I just discovered this mom blogger and haven’t had a ton of interaction with her. In fact, she’s probably going to wonder who I am when she sees I nominated her. However, her humor and positive outlook make each post awesome to read. She faces the challenges of any mom with faith and she doesn’t take herself too seriously. She has really impressed me so far with the writing I’ve been able to consume.
Nominees, if you are interested in accepting your nomination, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
To all my readers: I’m sorry this was so long-winded. One of my not-so-good qualities is that I love to talk about myself, when given the opportunity, although I do try to keep it in check when people don’t ask, so don’t get the wrong idea about me. I hope Saturated in Seattle and Gospel Isosceles know how thankful I am for the nominations, and I hope those I nominated know how much I appreciate their blogs.