Being fairly new to the blogging world, I had never heard of the Liebster Award before. So when MaryAnn Lorts of  comingtolight nominated me I was rather surprised. MaryAnn and I haven’t know each other long. We both serve together as co-leaders with an online Bible study group. But are also on the same journey of venturing out more in writing. I love that God has been connecting me more and more this year with fellow writers and bloggers. I am blessed and honored that she thought of me.

One (or three) of My Favorite Blogs-
It’s difficult to pick just one. I read a few. I tend to gravitate to these three all the time.

Crystal StineStacey Thacker and Lindsey Feldpausch . I’ve been blessed to be on launch teams for Crystal Stine and Stacey Thacker. They are awesome women and always available . Met Lindsey when I was on another authors’ launch team. I would love to be a big sister to all three. I think I am old enough to be their mom, but that role is already taken and everyone could use a sister. I think that I should be a Titus woman because of my age, but these three women inspire and encourage me so much. All three are Word rich, and always point me to Jesus. Whether in studying His word (Stacey Thacker); just being real and transparent, showing me more how Jesus simply shows up if we look (Lindsey Feldpaush) or remembering that all the things I do: home life, kids, church, and writing are and must be for His glory (Crystal Stine). And Crystal has an awesome graphics course called Creative Basics. If you are trying to learn how to do graphics be sure and check it out. There are a whole lot of other wonderful women that I read regularly.

10 Random Facts- In a very random order.
• I was 37 when my twins were born at 42.5 weeks, after I was warned I may lose them before 33 weeks. Switched doctors, no bedrest. They are not my youngest.
• Served as Secretary General of my college’s Model U.N group in my Jr. year.
• Spent a summer as an apprentice for a regional theater. The best summer!
• Still have stories from grade school that I wrote.
• I have 7 children.
• Could have graduated after my jr year in high school. Except I didn’t want to quit my choir, chorale and theater classes.
• I consider Miss Frizzle a mentor. Especially when the big kids were little.
• Left handed, but only when I write. Everything else I do right handed. Not sure if that makes me ambidextrous or not. Makes those “which brain are you” end up with nearly 50/50 results.
• Discovered recently that I have a passion for black light puppet theater.
• Christmas is my favorite holiday. I could decorate at least 2 or 3 trees with all the ornaments I have. My ornament collection started in my childhood. Don’t have enough flat spaces either for all my Christmas things. Or baskets enough for all my Christmas books.

1. What is your favorite room in your house and why?
Depends on the season. In the summer I do enjoy being outside on our deck. I don’t do sun or heat well, but it’s still lovely being on our swing. My goal is to have an office/prayer/music room soon. That will be my favorite.
2. How do you relax? Reading, playing mindless games on the computer. Listening to music, usually worship music. I love to cook and bake but don’t often give myself permission to do that just for fun. Chasing the sunset and waiting at the beach until dusk is nearly over before heading home.
3. Are you an early bird or a night owl? Have you always been this way? I am not an early bird. Usually a night owl. Though discovering that as the seasons change…my night owl tendencies stop once it starts getting dark earlier. But I’m still not an early bird. Though when I do catch the sunrise it’s as glorious as chasing the sunset.
4. Describe your overall inspiration for your blog. That’s a hard question to answer, since mine, I feel is still very much a work in progress. And it will probably be a mashup of different things. Encouraging, I hope. Other pieces that will be more of “practicing the craft” nature. Eph. 3:18 “that you may be able to comprehend how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ”
5. If you had to pick a Bible verse that serves as a mantra for you at this point in your life, what would it be and why? There are a few that have been my verses for several years. Ez. 37: 1-10, where he breathed life into dead bones and they became a mighty army. Is. 61:1-10, I believe that the Spirit has anointed me, (and any Believer) to fulfill a purpose, of helping others to heal, give them joy for mourning, beauty (in words or deeds) for their ashes. And as a prayer warrior, Hab. 2:1 Set on a watchtower. Vigilant for things amiss.

6. What would be your ideal morning (or start of day) look like? Quiet time, coffee or tea, early enough start to the day that I can feel accomplished before others need me.
7. What post are you most proud of and why? I don’t have many posts yet. But three come to mind. Two for Breathe Writer’s conference, one won’t be published until December. One is about leaning into that Holy Nudge that calls you to write. The other one is a response about one of the workshops.  A third,  about stepping out and walking on water.   That I was blessed to have  a portion of it used as a guest post.  Just because it’s completely where I am at right now. Learning to just take those first baby steps.
8. Describe your dream vacation. With family, no stress getting ready to go on vacation. I’ve yet to have one of those no stress beforehand vacations. Lots of quiet time just hanging out with the kids and hubby. Or just hubby. Board games, card games, books, coffee, tea. Some sight seeing.
9. What is your favorite memory? I have lots. Summer of ’79, as a theater apprentice. Writing/acting in our own skits as well as all the rehearsals for the regular shows.
10. Describe a special time in your life. Obviously, my wedding day and the births of my children.
11. What is one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger just starting out? Just start taking those baby steps on the water, and keep your focus on Jesus and not the turmoil, waves (naysayers) around you.
My Nominees:
Susan NiswongerWindows of Hope

I’ve known Susan for several years. Mostly within church conference settings. As a fellow woman in ministry. She’s always encouraging, and willing to pray. Our paths have drifted some but I still consider knowing her a blessing. Her posts regarding the Jesus following journey are always encouraging, even when they are convicting.

Pearl AllardLook Up Sometimes

Recently met Pearl in real life at Breathe Writers Conference. Discovered she wasn’t too far away. Great faith, love her beautiful words. Looking forward to getting to know her better.

Ruth VerKaikThe Nerd Factory

Discovered , after meeting her at a writing group event recently, that we had the Five Minute Friday tribe in common. “Met” at the FMF twitter parties. Glad to know that there will be a person I (sort of ) know when I start being really brave and attending the local writing group. Looking forward to getting to know her better too.

My Questions for my Nominees:

1. What motivates you to get up every morning?
2. What is your favorite post and why?
3. How and where do you pray for your most pressing issues? (e.g.- you write them, sing them, share them with close friends, do them early, or late at night…)
4. What is one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger just starting out?
5. What book (besides the Bible) has inspired you and how did it do that?
6. If you could give someone $1,000,000 who would you give it to?
7. If you had to pick a bible verse that serves as a mantra for you at this point in your life, what would it be and why?
8. Given the choice of anyone in the world whom would you want as a dinner guest and why?
9. If you could have someone from history over as a dinner guest -who and why?
10. Where are the top 3 places you want to visit?
11. Describe your overall inspiration for your blog

About the Liebster Award
If you are nominated for The Liebster Award AND YOU CHOOSE TO ACCEPT IT, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you should do the following:
1. Thank the person who nominated you, and put a link to their blog on your blog. Try to include a little promotion for the person who nominated you. They will thank you for it and those who you nominate will also help you out as well.
2. Display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget” or a “gadget”. (Note that the best way to do this is to save the image to your own computer and then upload it to your blog post. Check out this post to select an image:
3. For the 2017 Liebster Award, I will be shaking things up! Write a 150-300 word post about your favorite blog that is not your own. Explain why you like the blog, provide links.
4. Provide 10 random facts about yourself. (This year I’m making this optional. If you wish to engage with your readers it’s a great idea to include random facts about you.)
6. Nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have a less than 200 followers. (Note that you can always ask the blog owner this since not all blogs display a widget that lets the readers know this information!)
7. List these rules in your post (You can copy and paste from here or simply link to this post.)
8. Once you have written and published it, you then have to inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster Award and provide a link for them to your post or mine if you don’t have all the information so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!) Post a comment in the comments below so I can view your post and check out your blog. I personally visit each and everyone. I visited a few hundred last year!!