Tuesday, December 04, 2012

And the winner is ...

...  ME ! ! ! !

I’ve been nominated for a blog award.  Look! ——>

Someone nominated me for that!

Liebster is a German word meaning dearest, beloved, or favorite. The Liebster Award is given by bloggers to other bloggers and is intended to showcase exceptional blogs. And I have been given this award by one of the bloggers I mentioned a few posts back.  Thank you ever so much, Isobel, for the nomination! Isobel nominated me for this award at her photography blog, but I found her at her non-photography blog.

How It Works: 

1. Add the award icon to your blog!
2. Link to your nominator to say thank you.
3. Post 11 facts about yourself.
4. Answer the questions the tagger has set for you.
5. Create 11 questions for your nominees to answer.
6. Choose 11 up-and-coming bloggers with less than 200 followers, go to their blog, and tell them about the award.

Eleven Facts About Me:

This is actually hard: Having blogged here for 7 years, I'm not sure there's very much that I haven't already told you!

1. I took four years of Latin in high school and loved it; I'm pleased I was able to talk HardPlace into taking it this year.
2. I love licorice -- real licorice, not the so-called "red licorice."
3. I have finally learned how to bake apple pie.  It took only 30 years in the kitchen, with assorted dry, tasteless failures, but I finally found a recipe that works and that everyone likes.
4. Three places heal me every time: the ocean, the Grand Canyon, and an incense-filled church.
5. I love the smell of skunk-spray.  It's so earthy and real.  No, I've never been sprayed, but we had a few at our old house, and the scent was a fairly regular occurrence.
6. Every year, I forget that I'm the only one who really likes cranberry relish (how can that be???); this means that I have cranberry relish for weeks after Thanksgiving!
7. My mother was born in Argentina, and I spoke both English and Spanish as a toddler/little girl. In 5th grade, the Spanish teacher gave everyone "their Spanish names." My classmate Alice was given "Alicia," so the teacher tried to name me "Alicita." I was outraged and spat at her in the most indignant tone of voice a 9-year-old can muster, in what was probably the most perfect accent she'd ever heard in that school, ¡Me llamo Alicia!  [My name is Alicia!]. Okaaay then ... Michael? Your name will be Miguel.
8. I like to think I have an eye for photography. But really? .... My pictures suck.
9. There are no matches for me in the cyber-dating world.
10. I am a grammar geek, word nerd, language lady, et cetera -- but y'all already knew that. Right?
11. Gardening -- the kind where I get dirt under my fingernails -- makes me happy.

Eleven Questions I Have to Answer: 

1. What are you most passionate about? Social justice. In my 20s, I marched and demonstrated and sat-in and protested. Then I settled down and got a job and got married and got kids and the world went by without my really knowing what was going on anymore. Then Nick died, and I had no passion for anything. Then my mom got sick and I moved to Arizona to be with her and she introduced me to MSNBC and I started getting informed again. And mad again. And worked up again. I'm writing letters to Congress again. And talking to people about this stuff again. I haven't "done" anything yet, but I suspect that the right cause and the right opportunity will arise, and I'll be making signs again -- grammatically correct signs, of course!

2. Why do you blog?  Because I am an introvert. That means -- among other things -- that I process things internally. I sit and stew and think and mull about things and then, to help me articulate them, I write them down. You don't want to know how long it's taking me to answer these questions!

3. What is your favorite meal?  My mother's "country breakfast," which she would make once or twice a year -- Christmas and one or two other days.  Scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, pancakes, fruit compote, croissants (Pillsbury), coffee, mimosas ... ahhhhhh, life was good.

4. What book or books do you think everyone should read? I'm not big on "shoulds," because everyone needs different things in their life, so I will instead name two books that changed me, that shaped the way I look at the world.
  • Nonfiction: Powers of the Weak, by Elizabeth Janeway.  She talks about the dynamics of power in society and politics, naming some of the ways the powerful hold on to their power. 
  • Fiction: A Severed Wasp, by Madeleine L'Engle. An old woman looks back on her life and the things she has suffered and made peace with along the way ... lessons in forgiveness and compassion (of and towards oneself, as well as others).  
I first read both those books in the early 80s, and they both helped me identify things that I was struggling with and helped me understand myself and others better -- and helped me claim some of my own powers.

5. If money were no object, how would you occupy the rest of your life?  If I had unlimited money? I'd spend my life giving money away. So many of my widowed friends are in such dire financial straits and it kills me that I can't help more than I do. And I am so profoundly aware of how fortunate I am to live as I do in this society that I'd do whatever I could to help those who weren't lucky enough to be born into a white, middle-class family in America in the 1960s.

6. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?  First, Well done, dear one.  Second, He's right over there, waiting for you.

7. What is one thing you’ve never been able to/had time to/had funds to do that you still want to do?   I really want to hike from rim to rim across the Grand Canyon, but I'm afraid my knees won't allow it anymore.  So, I want to raft down the Colorado River into the Canyon and spend two or three nights camping at the bottom.

8. What is your favorite television show and why?   Babylon 5 was a great blend of sci-fi, humor, political intrigue, action-adventure, romance-heartbreak, and the constant struggle between good and evil.

9. What is your least enjoyable chore?  Scrubbing the boys' bathroom.  I don't think that needs any explanation.

10. What one thing about you is cool? 
I have a talent
for coming up with haiku
in no time at all.
11. Do you have pets?  My sweet Clara Kitty!

Eleven Questions I Am Asking: 

1. What was your favorite book as a child/teenager?

2. Aside from your parents/grandparents/etc, what adult influenced your life when you were a teenager?

3. When you were in high school, what did you want to do/be when you grew up?

4. Of all the "roads not taken" in your life, which one would you like to peek down, just to see what would have happened?

5. If you went to college, what was your major? Would you choose the same field if you went back today?

6. Do you have any siblings?

7. What's the most beautiful place you've ever been to?

8. How do you indulge yourself when you need a pick-me-up?

9. When was the last time someone else cooked a meal for you?

10. What do you wish more people knew about you?

11. Why did you start blogging (which may not be why you blog today)?

12. What movie do you always have to watch when it's on television?

Eleven Blogs I Am Nominating:

1. The End of the World and What Follows ~ a fellow traveler on the WidowRoad

2. The Class Factotum Speaks ~ reading this is like watching a sit-com!

3. Fresh on Friday ~ Powerful posts from a powerful woman ... on Fridays

4. Ray's blog ~ he's been awfully quiet lately, but he writes thought-provoking posts

5. Surfside Serenity ~ touching, thoughtful reflections on life -- and lovely photographs!

6. Diary of a Gold Digger ~ it's nice to know I'm not the only one who just loves her in-laws

7.  Jeanie Writes ~ a dear friend who's just started writing about her life of faith

8. Faith in Ambiguity ~ a new-to-me blog that I found during NaBloPoMo

9. The Heartbreak Diary ~ another widow writes her way through the grief

10.  A Widow's Perspective ~ BForever writes with a tenderness that often brings tears to my eyes

11.  ... hmmmm ...

I need to update my blogroll in the sidebar; many of the blogs I used to follow have gone dormant. I have a lot more blogs in my reader app, but they are big and popular and hardly "up and coming."


  1. You're definitely one of my liebsters...and that was even before I knew about your amazing haiku ability. The Joyful Story and The Terrible Story are tales etched in my mind. I feel like I know you and Nick and what you shared and what you lost. And knowing that you still go on anyway despite such a loss is worth a lot to me.

    Thank you for tipping your liebster hat at me! xx J.

  2. Thanks, Alicia! I'll get to this soon... although I should do it now as yet another putting-off-packing device! Mwah!

  3. Thank you, Alicia! Todavia hablas espanol? I'll try to follow through with this for my blog Friday. I had to laugh about "less than 200 followers." I have less than 20. :p

    1. Un pocito. Entiendo mucho pas que puedo hablar.

      I know what you mean about the number of followers! I have my Devoted Dozen, and that's about it!

  4. Congrats!! I do love your blog, you have a way of making me think!

  5. Thanks Alicia! I'm going to work on my post for this award over the weekend. So did you get to keep your own name in Spanish? I love spunky 9 year olds.


    1. Indeed, I did. The teacher didn't quite know what to make of me. I can still remember how her accent made me cringe: It was a Texas drawl with Mexican inflection. ***shudder*** (Argentinians are very snobbish -- even a bit racist, actually -- about their European roots.)

  6. How wonderful for you Alicia to be recognized by your peers in such a concrete way. This is a testament of not only your writing skills but more so of the riches you share so generously with others because you are who you are. Kudos!

  7. Hi Alicia,

    Congrats on your award. You deserve it! Also thanks for the mention. I have been quiet lately, but as you know, I've dropped off the face of the earth for periods of time in the past, but eventually find my way back. :)

    Latin?! How did you ever convince Hard Place to agree to that?

    Un premio para una dama dulce. No tiene precio.

  8. Thank you! Sorry I was so brief this morning - I was running out to catch the bus but I wanted to get something to you before my mom woke up and got online!

    I am very honored to win this award and so flattered at what you said! I love having readers. :)

    I like your questions. I'll have to think about those! I definitely would not major in English if I were going to college today - the job market is not what it used to be. But man did I enjoy it.

  9. I really enjoyed reading this, Alicia. It is hard to write one of these posts well and you did it. I was very interested in everything you had to say, and it's nice to feel like I know you a little bit. Thanks very much for the honor of your nomination.

  10. I nominated you back, but we don't have to go into an infinite loop of renomination. But I figured I might add a couple readers to your devoted dozen. :)