I can’t tell you how thrilled and honored I am to have been nominated for The Very Inspiring Blogger Award by Heather Fitzgerald over at The Tethered World. And what a blessing it has been to get to know her too! Her kindness, joy, wisdom, and love for the Lord and her family shine through in everything she does. If you haven’t checked out her blog, I highly recommend it. Whether it’s encouraging and thought-provoking devotionals, or tantalizing tidbits on her soon-to-be-published novel (eek!), or her valuable discussion on writing, reading what she has to say is always a treat. I don’t know how she does all of it, in addition to teaching ballet and taking care of her family, and who knows what else–but she is an inspiration for sure! If I could nominate her back, I would. But I’m guessing that’s against the rules. 😉
Post the award on your blog.
Thank your nominator, of course!
List 7 facts about yourself.
Nominate up to 15 other blogs you are inspired by.
Post the rules so people know them.
So, here goes. 7 facts about myself.
1. I have been married to my handsome, smart, funny husband for 5 years. We have actually known each other for about 13 years, because our families go to the same church. We often hung out with the same group of friends, but for the longest time neither of us considered the other with romantic interest. We were “just friends” and the thought of dating or getting married was just plain weird. Funny how things change. 😉 One of the things I appreciate most about him is his sense of humor, which is scarily similar to my own. I tend to be a weird mixture of silly and dry/sarcastic in my humor, so having someone who understands me, and who not only tolerates my silliness but isn’t afraid to join in, is a bonus in my book.
2. I was born partially deaf in one ear. I think it had something to do with my ear drum being stuck to the side of the ear canal, so it wasn’t vibrating like it was supposed to. At any rate, I went into surgery when I was one year old and the doctor put a tube in my ear, which fortunately corrected the problem. I can hear fine with both ears now. I also have insanely long toes. My father affectionately refers to them as my “monkey feet.” It has its advantages, though. For instance, I am extremely adept at picking things up with my toes. So when I drop something, I just grab it with a foot instead of bending down. And if my hands are full, not a problem–I can open most doors with one foot. Oh, and at one point I also perfected the art of pinching people with my toes, much to the chagrin of my younger sisters, the unfortunate victims of my practice.
3. I am a sixth-generation student of Ludwig van Beethoven. No–really! One of Beethoven’s students, Czerny, went on to teach a man by the name of Leschetizky, who in turn taught Horszowski. And Horszowski taught my college professor, Dr. Leslie Spotz. Cool, huh?
4. Now we’re about to get really nerdy. In high school, I was obsessed with Tolkien’s Elvish languages (not that that’s changed, but that’s when it started at least). I even taught myself how to write in Elvish script. I got so good at it that I occasionally took college lecture notes in Elvish, and could read them back later with ease. A strange side effect of this was that I sometimes subconsciously mixed my English and Elvish letters. When I went back to read it, I could understand it perfectly, but would stop and think, “there’s something…off…about this word, but I can’t quite place it…” and it would take me a couple minutes of staring at the word to realize my mistake. Since then, I have developed a (slightly) more useful interest in Irish (Gaeilge), which sprung out of my love of Irish music. So I spend part of my free time studying Irish, just for fun.
5. I have a random and slightly scary talent for recalling Disney music. As a kid, I had a particularly strong memory for songs. So, I probably couldn’t have told you the actual plot to most movies I watched–but I could sing and dance every song from the movie by heart. Unsurprisingly, musicals and Disney movies were my favorites. To this day, I still remember almost every Disney song ever released, and can sing most of them upon request.
6. Up until the last half of high school, I was absolutely convinced that I was going to be a marine biologist when I grew up. That’s how much I love the ocean. Particularly ocean life–dolphins, whales, fish, you name it. In addition, I also collect seashells. Any time I travel to a place with a beach, I try to find some to bring home and display. It’s a fun way to show different places I’ve traveled to, and what the shells look like at each location.
7. Finally, my favorite subject in school was science. This one comes as a surprise to a lot of people, given my artistic leanings. I think the reason I love science so much is because I’m a very curious person. My mind has always wanted to know how things work and why they work that way. Over the years, my interests have turned from the ocean to the sky. So, I am a musician, teacher and writer by day–and amateur astronomer by night. There is nothing as humbling, exciting and awe-inspiring as looking through a telescope at the vast, incomprehensible beauty of God’s creation in the universe.
Now, for my nominations! Please, do not feel obligated to participate because I nominated you. I also am aware that I’m re-nominating some of you, but these are all bloggers who inspire me, so I thought they all deserved recognition. 🙂
1. Raelea Hiller from The Starlit Forest. A poetic soul, beyond any doubt. On her blog, Raelea shares poems, story excerpts, and other thoughts and writing endeavors. This lovely lady has a true gift for description; everything I read from her always captures my imagination and sparks my interest. Her words, humble spirit and eye for the details are all inspiring indeed!
2. Faith Brown from Like a Bed of Rest is an inspiration and encouragement in both her writing and example. She has opened herself up on her blog in the most vulnerable way by giving others a glimpse into her past suffering and her journey into a deeper, trusting, and joyous relationship with God that was born out of it. I rarely read her posts without tearing up. If you want to see God at work, even amidst darkness, you need to read her story.
3. Faith’s mother, Deanna Brown over at Strokeman’s Woman, is equally inspirational and encouraging to me. Here you will read parts of the same story, except through the eyes of a caregiver. Deanna doesn’t sugarcoat the many struggles she has faced and continues to face, but rather shares her experience openly and honestly. Her trust in the Lord through it all, and willingness to share her wisdom and experience, are a blessing to many, including myself. She is one of the strongest ladies I know, who despite everything has remained humble, selfless, and God-glorifying. I am very thankful for her example.
4. Emily Shiflet from Living in Heaven’s Shadow is a kind, joyful, and wise lady (as well as fellow pianist) whom I have immensely enjoyed getting to know. She posts book and movie reviews, along with her own writings and thoughts on theological topics. Her blog is full of deep, thought-provoking and beautiful writing that always leaves me refreshed and challenged.
5. James from A Tolkienist’s Perspective. For all things Tolkien related, this is the place to go. His articles range from the books, to the movies and the music, and beyond. They never disappoint, are done in good taste, and are well-written and thought out. He inspires me with his appreciation and respect for Tolkien, as well as his ability to consider things I’ve never thought about before, or to think of them in new ways. Reading his blog is always a treat!
6. Eric at Sweating To Mordor, who quite creatively turned his need to exercise into a chance to follow along on Frodo’s journey to Mount Doom, chronicles the stories of Middle Earth. He is currently breaking down The Silmarillion, page by page, and “simmering” over the points in a thorough, easy to follow, and interesting manner. His posts (which, by the way, are accompanied by his own beautiful photographs) always intrigue me and inspire me to get lost in Middle Earth along with him.
7. Lastly, but certainly not least, is Abby Jones from A Gentle and Quiet Spirit. I debated on including you, Abby, only because I don’t want you to feel obligated to participate while you’re supposed to be resting. So, don’t push yourself! I’ve got my eye on you, missy. 😉 Still, I felt my list would be incomplete without any mention of this sweet lady. It is because of Abby I started my blog, and share any of my writing in the first place. She encouraged me to be brave, and has generously shared with me her knowledge, experience, thoughts, praises and constructive criticism along the way. Abby is a true example of a gentle and quiet spirit in word and in deed, whether at home, at church, among friends, or on the internet. Her writing is gripping, with poetic descriptions and beautiful details; and she weaves magic, truth, adventure and Christianity together in imaginative settings. On her blog you will find her thoughts on writing and theological topics, helpful and insightful book and movie reviews, fun children’s stories, and much more! It is all well worth reading.
That’s it for now! Thanks again for including me, Heather. And thank you to all of my readers for sticking with me thus far! Until next time, allons-y!! (And if you get that reference, you’re awesome).