Danke, my liebster

When you take a hiatus from blogging, you worry a bit.

You worry that your readers will forget about your blog.  You worry that you disappoint those faithful readers that do remain in your blogging circle when there’s nothing new for them to read.

And you worry that when you do return to the blogging world, no one will want to read what you write.

Being overwhelmed by the wedding world these last few months, I’ve taken a few breaks from blogging.  It was necessary to try to retain my sanity while preparing for all three of my adult children’s weddings.

But each time I returned, there you were – my faithful readers, my friends who proved they weren’t just fair-weather friends.  And you, my dear ones, are liebster.

Liebster (pronounced: leeb-stir) is a German word meaning sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing and welcome.

How do I know this?  I learned it straight from my blogging buddy Dor at Virginia Views.  She recently was awarded The Liebster Blog Award and most graciously passed the torch to Mama’s Empty Nest.  Dor is definitely liebster.

According to Dor, this award “recognizes up and coming bloggers and winners are asked to ‘pay it back and forward.’  The award is given to those bloggers who have less than 200 followers.”

The Rules for the Liebster Award are as follows: 

  • Link back to the blogger who gave you this award.
  • Post the award to your blog.
  • Post 11 things about yourself.
  • Answer the questions asked of you, plus create 11 new questions for your nominees to answer.
  • Nominate 11 people you think deserve the award and link them to your post.
  • Go to their pages and tell them they have been chosen.

Linking back to my friend Dor’s blog is easy to do and I’m pleased to recommend her blog to all my friends and readers.   Posting the award on my blog – also easy.  There it is, positioned in this post, and taking up a little space on my awards page.

Now comes the not so easy thing.

Post 11 things about yourself.   Well, here goes!

1)     Unless you know me personally, this may come as a surprise to you because since I began blogging, I’ve kept anonymous.   To some, I’m only known as Mama or MEN (Mama’s Empty Nest).  But my real name is Cindy.

2)    I’ve been married to the most wonderful but sometimes wacky man for 35 years.  And unless I was a child bride, which I wasn’t, that tells you I am definitely middle-aged, or as I like to call it, on the down slide to 60.

3)    I’m not crazy about dogs.  The feeling is not mutual, however.  They appear to love me.

4)    I am fanatical about ice cubes.  I must have ice in any cold drink, whether it is sweet tea, unsweetened tea, soda (or as we call it here – pop), or just plain water.  Must. Have. Ice.

5)    I love sleeping in a cold bedroom.  In the dead of winter when it’s freezing outside, snow on the ground, cold wind blowing, you may drive past my house at night and you’ll notice that my bedroom window is open a tad.  This habit evolved because of those dratted menopausal symptoms of hot flashes and night sweats years ago, but now both hubby and I prefer a cold bedroom since we sleep better at cooler temperatures.  Brrr…in a good way!

6)    I drive an all-wheel drive vehicle for one purpose – to make it out of my uphill driveway every winter.  When it snows here at Mama’s Empty Nest, it blows and drifts and makes my driveway a challenge.  Plus, I love my Freddy Forester (the name I dubbed my trusty SUV).

7)    This is the seventh item in my list of things about me, so it seems fitting to relate that this is my seventh year of living cancer-free, for which I am so very thankful.

8)    I like the number 8.  I don’t really know why, I just do.  If I were an ice skater, I’d skate figure eights a lot.

9)    I just don’t understand why everyone wants to read on Kindle.  Really, reading on a screen is not nearly as relaxing as cozying up with a real, honest-to-goodness paper and binding book, turning real pages that I can feel in my hands, and locating a real bookmark to keep my place.  And browsing libraries and book stores is soothing to me.  Firing up a hand-held electronic device just doesn’t create the same feeling, virtually.  Call me a dinosaur.  I can take it.

10)  This item seems like a dichotomy, but it’s true.  I like lots of open space in a house; closed-in spaces make me feel claustrophobic.  But wide open spaces like the prairie in the central part of our country almost frighten me.  Go figure.

11) I’m happy and relieved to report that I survived this year – our “Year of the Weddings” in which all three of our adult children married.  It was stressful and most joyful all at the same time and I believe I’m still someone sane from the experience.  I know I am thrilled beyond measure to add three more wonderful people to our family!  For those of you who want to see photos from the last wedding held just a couple of weeks ago, hang on.  They’re coming soon, I promise.

Here are the 11 questions Dor chose for us lucky award recipients:

1)    If you could go anywhere in the world and stay for a month, where would you choose to go? My first thought was a nice, warm, sunny beach somewhere, but then I thought, “Nah….I’d get weary of just lounging on a beach for an entire month.”  So where would I spend a month anywhere in the whole wide world?  I think I’d go to the country of my ancestors – merry old England.  And even though it probably wouldn’t be warm or sunny, I’d explore the old country as much as I possibly could and imagine my ancestors living there.

2)    What is your hobby?  Besides blogging, I love to take photographs, but I’m really such an amateur.  I’m an avid crossword puzzle solver.  I’m a reader when I have time and I used to enjoy crafts.

3)  What was your childhood dream?  Don’t laugh.  My fondest childhood dream was an aspiration to be famous.  I decided early on in my life that I was either going to be a famous actress or a famous writer.  Unfortunately, I am neither.

4)    What was the best gift you ever received? Just recently, I received a gift that left me speechless.  But I’m going to leave you in suspense over that one because I plan to write a post about it very soon.  Stay tuned!

5)    What is your favorite movie?  That is hard to narrow down because I like a lot of movies.  Many of my favorite movies are old ones like It’s a Wonderful Life and The Thin Man.

6)    Who is the person who inspired you the most?  I’d have to say there were two people – my parents.  My mom battled cancer for less than a year before she succumbed.  She battled bravely without complaining, without regrets, without feeling sorry for herself.  Instead she chose to be grateful for the life she had been given and the blessings that surrounded her.  I hope I am half the person she is.  My dad also inspired me as he was the most kind, gracious, well-liked and respected man.  He also never said anything harsh or unpleasant about anyone.  I’d like to follow in his footsteps and be a chip off the old block, but I have to keep working on that.

7)    What is your favorite dessert?  Anything chocolate, except when eaten after 7 p.m. when the caffeine in the chocolate keeps me up all night.

8)    What is your favorite quote? Oh, that’s difficult because I am an ardent collector of quotes.  I love quotes and keep them in a notebook.  I could choose a poignant quote, a philosophical one, even a scripture from God’s Word could qualify as a favorite.  But I may surprise a few people with this quote that I think says it all:   “Just keep swimming.” ~ Dory in Finding Nemo

9)    What do you do for relaxation? I sit.  Honestly, that’s what I do to relax.  I sit and I’m quiet and I de-stress.

10) What is your favorite remembered scent/smell from childhood?  The clean, fresh scent of soap.  It reminds me of my mother.

11) If you could be a character in a book, who would you choose to be?  Hands down, Elizabeth Bennet in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.  No matter how many times I read that book, I always find myself admiring this character.

Now it’s my turn to pass the Liebster on to my list of 11 must-read bloggers, although I don’t know if my honorees have less than 200 followers or not.  I only know that I follow them and they are dear friends of mine.

They are my go-to list, but I want to tell my new followers that I just haven’t had time to check out your blogs yet.  I have a lengthy list of new folks to read about and I’m hoping to do just that soon after the holidays are over and the long winter sets in.

  1. Homestead Ramblings
  2. These Days of Mine
  3. Georgette Sullins Blog
  4. Living in Graceland 
  5. Montana Outdoors
  6. Big Happy Nothing  
  7. Writing For Daisies 
  8. Believe Anyway
  9. Nikole Hahn’s Journal
  10. Saturday Evening Porch 
  11. Laura’s Blog

Some of my faves don’t really get into these awards that much, and that’s just fine.  Whatever floats my boat may sink yours, so I won’t be offended if you choose not to respond to the Liebster Award and its rules.

But if you are feeling whimsical and want to answer my 11 questions, here they are:

1)    If you made a bucket list, what would be the number one item on that list?

2)    What is your favorite holiday?

3)    How did you decide on the name of your blog?

4)    What is one of your most beloved family traditions?

5)    What is your all-time favorite thing in the world to eat?

6)    Where have you traveled that is the farthest away from your home?

7)    Which is better – television, movies, or book?

8)    If you celebrate Christmas, when do you open gifts, Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?

9)    If you own a Kindle, why do you like it? If you don’t, why not?

10)  It’s almost Thanksgiving, for what are you most thankful?

11)  Have you ever met one of your blogging buddies in person?  What was the experience like?

I’m grateful for my readers and my blogging buddies, for my oldest and dearest friends and my new, endearing ones, for the opportunity to be honored and the chance to honor someone else.

Danke schön, mein liebster lesern.

(Thank you very much, my dearest readers.  Not sure I got that German correct, but I tried!)

©2012 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com


17 responses

    • Kate!! So good to ‘see’ you and thanks for the lovely comment, “I feel like I’ve been reacquainted with an old friend.” 🙂 Hopefully, I can catch up with you and your blog very soon. I love that new (at least to me) photo of you. Be blessed!!


  1. Welcome back to the blogging world! I’ve enjoyed your photos and stories of your children getting married and your part making their events so special!


    • Thank you very much, shofar. Glad to hear you enjoyed my photos and stories. I worried a little that my readers would get a little weary of the wedding world stories, but it was such a huge part of my life this year. Thanks for being a faithful reader. I’m hoping for a little spare time to delve into your blog soon. Be blessed!


  2. Thank you Cindy, for the nomination. I am honored. I’m also glad that you won’t be offended because I do not feel comfortable receiving awards of any kind.

    I doubt if anyone would be especially interested in my answers to the 11 questions, except possibly to the last one. During the six years that I have maintained a blog I have encountered many people whom I consider friends and that has served to restore a lot of my faith in people. Four I have had the privilege to meet in person. Only one lived in the same area as I do and we became good friends for several years until he succumbed to cancer a few weeks ago. I will miss him very much. Another couple stopped by while passing through our area and we spent a very pleasant afternoon together. I hope to see them again the next time the venture out this way. One young woman from the east coast communicated with me for several years before coming out here to complete a masters degree at the University of Montana. She became practically a part of our family during the time of her studies and spent many weekends here with my wife and me and we enjoyed many great hikes together. She married about a year ago after completing her degree and moved back to the east coast, but we still keep in touch. The fourth is a man who shares my love for the wild country of the west. He now lives in the northern part of Washington state and comes here every fall to go on a number of hikes with me. We have become very good friends.

    I consider these to be very successful results from a simple venture out to meet new people in a virtual environment and find that so many, like yourself, are real and wonderful folks.


    • Montucky, goodness no, I would not be offended by your not taking part in the awards hoopla. Thanks for answering that last question though. I truly enjoyed your answer and reading about the folks who’ve become your friends through blogging. I’m sorry for the loss of your close-by friend. I’m sure you will have many happy memories of him to recall while you’re out enjoying that gorgeous countryside. And you are so right, ‘meeting’ real and wonderful bloggers does restore faith in mankind. It’s sure been a blessing for me to get to know you a little through your magnificent photos. Thanks for taking the time to comment and being one of my faithful readers also! Blessings to you!


  3. I’m so excited for you–congrats! I loved hearing about you and I’ll have to say most of your answers rang true for me, my friend! And I agree–I’ve had to take many a break this year as well.
    And I loved your questions, too, and thank you for thinking of me! I hope to meet you one day.
    I’m dying to answer a few right now! I love Christmas, and opening one present on Christmas Eve and the rest on Christmas Day; France–I dream of going to Burgundy for 2 weeks someday…chocolate souffle and books, books, books! (And audiobooks, more than iPad reading) I enjoy sitting, too, which is why I named mine blog Saturday Evening Porch:) (And the ‘reelingintheyears’ comes from an old Steely Dan tune…LOVE the 70’s, to boot).
    I’m thankful for my family, and friends like you!
    Have a happy holiday, M.E.N.!


    • You know, my friend, I believe you were one of my very first blogging buddies! I was so excited when you first commented on my blog way back then and I’ve come to feel like I know you even though we’ve never met in person. Hopefully, we can do so someday, although my trips down South won’t happen so much since our oldest daughter doesn’t live in B-ham any more. I loved the answers you gave to my questions! We have the same Christmas ritual, I see, one present Christmas Eve, the rest on Christmas Day. And oh yes, I knew where your reelingintheyears came from — we 70s gals have to stick together! Thanks for the congrats! It’s been such a whirlwind of a year with so much joy and love, I feel like I could just burst from happiness! 😀


  4. Thank you very much for the award, Mama … or Cindy … but I’ll probably keep referring to you as Mama! 🙂 I will enjoy responding to it and, like Saturday Evening Porch, many of your answers rang true for me. Also, she is one of my original blogging buddies, too! Isn’t it funny how the blogging world can actually be so small sometimes? And, if it weren’t for plagiarism, I’d copy the first paragraphs of your post. I’ve been on two extended breaks and can’t thank my readers enough for sticking with me. I am always amazed and so grateful. That your followers welcome you back with open arms is no surprise to me. I love your blog – you are so genuine and the warmth radiates right off of the computer!

    I am so thrilled for your survivorship, my friend! You are an inspiration to me! You go, girl! xoxo

    And I am so happy that you are still standing after three weddings in one year! And I know you poured your heart and soul into each one. What lucky children, and what a wonderful mom. Please put your feet up and relax, or put the pedal to the metal and take off for a fun drive with Freddy Forester.

    I just have to say that I love Dor’s blog, too. Being new to Virginia, she has helped me adapt and makes me appreciate things about my new state that I wouldn’t have known about otherwise!

    I’m looking forward to visiting the other Liebster recipients! Thank you, again, for including me among them.


    • Aw, AA, who is spreading the love and warmth now, girl? You are! Thanks for your sweet and kind words! Isn’t it neat to have this circle of blogging friendship? Yes, I’m taking it easy as easy as possible with the holidays coming up soon. My happy, happy, joy, joy-ometer is about to pop its top!! xoxo to you too!!


  5. I love reading the answers to the 11 questions. That’s the most fun part. Like montucky, I’m not comfortable with the awards but I do want to tackle the questions and put them out there to my readers. However, I must disagree with montucky in that I would definitely be interested in his answers to the questions. Guess I’m just a “people person”. Thank for the honor of being on that great list you have. I enjoy checking out new places to visit and will try to stop by the ones that are new to me.

    You are a worthy recipient of this awards. Congratulations!


    • Thanks, Debby!! I know what you mean about Montucky. Yes, I would have been very interested in his answers to the questions, but feel honored that he even tackled one of them. I feel that he is such a humble, humble person, much like you. I’m a people person too, so I can’t wait to read your answers to the questions. And you are also most worthy of awards in my book!


  6. Hey Mama’s — or should I say, “Cindy!” 🙂 So happy to finally know your name. And so wonderful to read about all the wonderful things you shared. Congratulations on your award! As you know, I enjoy Dor’s blog very much, and it’s no surprise to me that she passed this lovely award on to you. It’s very well-deserved!

    And as for blogging breaks? I think I’ve got you beat. And in no way am I a “fair-weather” friend of yours as you’d mentioned you’d worried about. I’m here! (When I’m here, of course…) 🙂

    Your answers to Dor’s questions were so thoughtful and beautiful, I feel calmer after just reading them. And I look forward to reading about your “best gift.” Maybe you’ve posted about it already, while I’ve been on my own little break? I’ll have to check soon. It’s quite intriguing.

    Well, my friend, I’m happy to read this for so many reasons. First, it sounds like you made it through a year that would have wrought havoc on a lesser soul, with all three of your children marrying off at once! But instead of complaining, you dove right in and focused on all the good that has come and will continue to come from such unions. It’s been a joy to read about all the weddings. And even nicer to get to “know” you a little more now through your answers (It’s a Wonderful Life is one of my favorite movies, too!).

    Thank you so much for passing the award on to me. I’m honored, and will answer your questions soon.


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