Liebster Award and Survey

Hi, everyone! We didn’t go hiking this past weekend because of heavy rains and flash foods, so I don’t have any fun PNW hiking adventures to share with you this week. Angie at Pace with Grace nominated me for the Liebster Award (thank you, Angie!), which is an award given to new bloggers by other bloggers as a way to support and promote each other in growing their blogs. 

Liebster Award Logo

1) If you had to give one piece of advice, what would it be?

Seek beauty. Not in terms of personal vanity, but seek the God-made and man-made beauty of the world around you. Beauty has the remarkable capacity to shift our perspective, alleviate stress, and make us kinder people. So explore nature, travel to beautiful architectural landmarks, visit an art museum, listen to a symphony, reading a captivating piece of literature, run on your favorite trail, spend time with the smiling faces of family and friends, whatever works for you in engaging your mind in the beauty of the world around us. As Dostoevsky wrote in his novel The Idiot: “Beauty will save the world.”

Hiking to Beckler Peak
Natural beauty at Beckler Peak.

2) What are you most proud of in your life (past or present)?

I traveled completely by myself for 10 days during my semester abroad in Europe. I went to Switzerland, Luxembourg, France, England (although I did stay with friends there), Belgium, and parts of Western Germany completely by myself. It was a challenge in the best way possible and taught me self-reliability. I learned how to manage obstacles on my own, how to entertain myself, how to read maps, and how to value silence and alone time.

3) Who is your style icon?

The mannequin at REI—just kidding (sort of. I can’t go there without finding more clothes I want to buy). I really don’t have one particular sense of style; sometimes I love a classic chic style, other times I have a more outdoorsy look. Most days, I wear a long sleeve t-shirt, a cute base layer, or sweater, straight leg dark wash jeans, and boots, black flats, or Sperrys. Also, I love any shirt or jacket that has thumbholes. 

4) What is something your readers don’t know about you?

I love late 19th/early to mid 20th century American and British poetry. Ralph Waldo Emerson, Gerard Manley Hopkins, T.S. Eliot, and W.H. Auden are some of my favorites. Sometimes on long runs I’ll mentally recite snippets of poems, such as “Invictus” or “Do Not Go Gentle” (the poem featured in Interstellar), in my head to match the rhythm of my cadence. To quote Virginia Woolf (A Room of One’s Own), “It is strange how a scrap of poetry works in the mind and makes the legs move in time to it along the road.”

5) How would you describe your personality?

I’m introverted, stubborn, efficient, disciplined, bookish, mildly pedantic (personalities include flaws), generous, kind, and motivated. I have a weird sense of humor (we recently watched The Interview and I thought it was hilarious), I don’t do well sitting still, and I am hard on myself and always pushing myself to do better. I’m also super awkward at answering this question.

6) Favorite gift you’ve ever given?

For several birthday, I gifted Ryan with tickets for us to a BrewFest in Valparaiso (where we went to college and lived up until this spring). Experiences are my favorite gifts and we always had so much fun at these events. 

7) What is your favorite holiday and why?

I love everything about Christmas, from Christmas eve church to opening presents the next morning to the Dr. Who Christmas special. The music, the decorations, the food, the cheer, the time with family, everything about it brings joy to my heart.

Christmas 2014
From Christmas 2014: Charlie’s favorite present.

8) What is your biggest struggle with blogging?

I don’t know if I’ll ever master social media. Sometimes I feel as if I’ve learned a lot and am finally grasping how to functionally use it as a business tool, and then I learn more and realize just how little I know and how much I need to improve.

9) What is your biggest accomplishment?

Lately I’ve been reflecting on how this blog, as little as it is, is an accomplishment. I am often transparent in the fact that I want this blog to grow into its own little business, my livelihood. At times, a hint of temptation emerges to review every product offered to me, to write for others without compensation, and to dumb down my content. The accomplishment for me is in upholding integrity in my work and continuing to work hard, even if at times it seems to no avail. To (again) quote Virginia Woolf in A Room of One’s Own, “So long as you write what you wish to write, that is all that matters…But to sacrifice a hair of the head of your vision, a shade of its colour, in deference to some Headmaster with a silver pot in his hand or to some professor with a measuring-rod up his sleeve, is the most abject treachery.”

Blogging is actually quite a metaphorical and literal fulfillment of Woolf’s desire for women to have a room of their own to write, but that’s a rather tangential ramble of my mind. 

10) Who inspires you?

Oooh, that’s another tricky question. Ryan and my parents inspire me each and every day. Beyond my family, I draw immense inspiration from Saint Therese of Lisieux, a 19th century author who emphasized finding greatness in little acts of kindness and generosity – the little way, as she called it. We all aspire to do great things, but it is often the little things which leave the most impact upon the lives of others: an encouraging note, a smile to a stranger, the completion of a dreaded chore, and simply be present in the moment with the ones we love. The idea of doing little acts of kindness inspires me to try to be a better person.

[Tweet “Get to know @thisrunrecipes with the Liebster Award Survey #fitfluential #sweatpink”]

Now, to spread the blog love, I nominate other bloggers and provide questions for them to answer, so here we go.

I nominate Suzy Has the Runs, Just a Pinch, and Slimpify Life

  1. What’s something your readers don’t know about you?
  2. How would you describe your personal style?
  3. What’s one event that has left a definitive mark on your attitude towards life?
  4. If you had the resources and time, what country would you live in for a year?
  5. What’s your favorite holiday?
  6. What’s the most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done?
  7. Who inspires you?
  8. What’s your favorite novel?
  9. What’s the biggest struggle about blogging for you?
  10. What’s a goal you want to achieve before the end of the year?

Questions of the Day:
It’s your turn! Answer any and as many of the questions I answered above. I love to get to know my readers!

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24 Responses

  1. Such fantastic answers, and truly a further glimpse into your personality! So much I want to comment on, but I’ll choose just a few: I love the idea of reciting poetry while running–it is so rhythmical, and definitely inspiring. I concur with the mastering of social media, and I will raise you that I feel like I will never understand the behinds the scenes part of the blogging world. Like SEo, etc. And seek beauty is a wonderful piece of advice–because beauty can be transformative, and beauty can give you peace (the right kind of beauty, that is).

    1. Thank you, Susie! SEO is sooo complicated as well – another one I feel like I never understand! and yes to beauty being transformative – that’s a great way to describe it!

  2. So cool that you traveled like that by yourself! Independence is a powerful thing and realizing when you can do things by yourself is truly a wonderful feeling. I think I wrote about this topic last year. With so many posts, I often forget them until something reminds me 🙂

  3. This was a fun read and great glance into your life! I remember studying most of those poets in my lit classes in college and I really liked Gerard Manly Hopkins and TS Eliot. I’m really not into mastering blogging- it’s a fun hobby and I like it, but it’s not making me any money (lol) and I mostly do it to get some relief from technical writing and to share and document my own life.

  4. I love the answers to these questions. Since I’m newer to your blog, these answers have helped me to get to know your personality better.

  5. I loved reading your answers, Laura and getting to know you better! As a reader I can say that your personality shines through in your writing so well and I love that. I am impressed by your independent travels; what an amazing experience! I loved what you said about what you’re most proud of- staying true to your vision for your blog. This will continue to pay off for you! Thanks for sharing, I obviously loved reading it 🙂

  6. Loved reading this! It’s so nice to get to know you better! And we sound like very similar dressers (although thumb holes drive me up the wall) 🙂

    I’m terrible at social media – like, I haven’t even bothered to try. I just use it for personal use. As a fellow introvert, I think we will just always struggle with self-promotion. It’s uncomfortable. But mad props to you for trying anyway and always seeking to learn more and improve!

    1. Thanks, Hanna! I agree, social media is such a struggle for introverts – I personally dislike posting pictures of myself but that’s what draws followers. But that’s where a lot of traffic comes from and it’s good to go outside of comfort zones.

  7. Yippee! I feel like I need to go buy a new outfit for my nomination. <3 I love your answers and I love the fact that none of them surprised me which means what? It means that you write so well that I have been able to learn about who you are through your previous bits of writing and photos enough to know how you would answer these questions. I think you and I would honestly get along so well. We have so much in common, so much stuff to talk about in regards to writing and philosophy and religion and yet we'd give each other some balance too: I'd put a little wild and crazy in your life and you'd settle me down a bit. xo

    1. You deserve a new outfit! 🙂 Thank you so much, Suzy!! We do have so much in common and should just sit down for coffee or drinks some day – I’m sure we could talk for hours! If you’re ever in the Seattle area or I’m ever in the BC we should meet up 🙂 xo

  8. I love surveys! This one is so fun, and I love your questions. Here are some answers:

    If you had the resources and time, what country would you live in for a year? This is actually a dream that Dan and I have been working on. Our top choices would be Ireland, Sweden, Switzerland or Spain. Too many good places!

    What’s the most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done? I like to consider myself a pretty spontaneous person..I’ll never turn anything down! A few weeks ago in Tennessee I randomly pulled into a theme park and went bungee jumping..a few years ago I bought a Groupon for an adventure trip to Costa Rica..I have a few other examples but you get the idea!

  9. You’re awesome!! Thanks for sharing your answers girl! I must say, the first one is SO inspiring!! Seeking God’s beauty and the beauty we create is a real game-changer when it comes to perspective!

  10. I also love poetry, and your personality description is just what I’ve gotten from your blog thus far 🙂 Blogging is TOUGH and I struggle with the same things. I know I need to find a way to work smarter, not harder, and I don’t have that answer yet!

  11. Traveling like that sounds like such a great experience! When I studied abroad and did alot of things on my own, which was definitely good at helping me to feel independent and learn some things for myself without depending on others.

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