Why Only Eleven?


Last week I was kindly nominated by Janice at Ontheland – Caring About Our World; Reflecting About Life for the Liebster Award. If you haven’t visited her blog before, you have missed a treat.  Janice is a gifted poet and her poetry and accompanying photographs are always thoughtful and delightful. Also she’s passionate about the environment and blogs about this and believes that we all can make a difference to the world we live in.

The Liebster Award seems to be centred on the number 11 and I’m happy to answer 11 questions posed by Janice, as well as thinking of 11 random facts about myself. Finally I have written 11 questions for my 11 nominees.

The award is aimed at blogs  with a certain number of followers – in this case followers of nominees should be between 200-3000.

Without further ado. Let’s begin:

Janice’s Questions:

  1. Why do you blog? Isn’t it interesting to see how the reasons why you started blogging become so different from the reasons you continue? I started, as many other writers, hoping to achieve a platform for myself as a writer and I wanted to share my writing journey of my first book whilst learning from others along the way. Quickly I realised that facts about my writing alone would not take my readers or myself far and I quickly diversified to an eclectic range of topics.
  2. gardeningWhat are your favourite hobbies? Among my cerebral interests are reading, writing, current affairs and obviously blogging. Outside I enjoy walking and gardening (in warmer weather). Overall I love organising, be it work, trips, family…
  3. What  is one of your pet peeves?  What really bugs me is people texting or glancing at their phone/tablet whilst out eating with others. It’s just not polite. My irritation is doubled when it’s a young child being ignored.
  4. What is a favourite food or meal?  My all-time favourite food is anything with pasta. As I was still a fussy eater when getting married I had a pasta dish at my wedding – much to the amusement of my friends and family.
  5. Ginseng-Tea-PicturesDo you prefer coffee or tea or neither?  Although I love the smell of coffee I don’t drink it, preferring herbal teas. Peppermint for the morning, ginger tea to take me through the day and a camomile tea in the evening.
  6. snowgarden2Name a favourite something  (eg. book, singer, band, author, poem).   My current favourite writer is Rachel Joyce.I loved her previous three books (The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, Perfect & The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy). Her latest book, ‘A Snow Garden’ is sublime, magical, poetic and humorous. It’s wonderful to see a short story collection becoming such a popular success.
  7. Are you a morning person? After the first hour in the morning, I turn into a friendly human being; ready to work, talk, take part in this world. Before then, I enjoy the quiet ethereal peace twixt sleep and wake.
  8. What sports do you enjoy, if any?   At the moment, apart from losing massively in football or tennis against my son, I enjoy pilates and yoga. The latter maybe less so following my recent slipped discs suffered after a particularly gruelling session. Ouch!
  9. googleWhat is a reference source that you use frequently? Was there life before Google?! Seriously, I use Google or such search engines many times during the day and can’t imagine what I did in pre-internet days. Oh yes, dictionary, encyclopaedia, thesaurus…Occasionally I will still use my Oxford English Dictionary when truly stuck.
  10. What quality do you value most in a friend?  Steadfastness.
  11. kennedy-space-centre4What is a favourite journey, either travelled or planned for the future?   This summer we are hoping to visit Florida so I’m very excited about this possibility. As a space fan a visit to the  Kennedy Space Centre is a must!



Random Facts about Myself:

cinnamon1. I struggle to say the word ‘cinnamon’ properly – and people who know me wouldn’t want it any other way!
2. I tried my first pizza aged 26.

3. midnight-sunAt nursery I orchestrated The Great Escape for myself and an group of friends, slipping through an unlocked gate after lunchtime break, heading towards the forest nearby. Alas we were spotted, kindly halted in our tracks and returned to the nursery.

4. Aged four I hunted out a packet of cigarettes and ate one but have never touched any since! In my mother’s defence she had hidden them in the highest and most inaccessible cupboard in the kitchen but I was a resourceful child – a real little monkey.

5.breaking bad I’m a secret (oops!) Netflix addict. In the past years I’ve gorged on: Breaking Bad, Chuck, How I Met Your Mother, Orange is the Next Black, House of Cards, Call The Midwife, The Good Wife, Better Call Saul…


6. I believe I suffer from Prosopagnosia where people have difficulty recognising others. I am hopeless at recognising people; it is a real struggle and I even panicked when picking up my son from school in the first days in case I couldn’t find him amongst the mass of children (don’t worry, I did find him – or more likely vice versa!)

l-plates7. When learning to drive my first attempt nearly ended up in the stone wall up on the moors as I proudly copied the drivers off the movies, swinging the steering wheel back and forth. My poor mother only just saved us!

8. Whilst my husband proposed at the romantic lakeside location in Sweden a group of mad manic looking sheep in the field nearby stared unnervingly at  us.

cleaning9. When sad or angry I become a demon cleaner. Want your house to sparkle? Just catch me on one of my off days!


10. astronaut3When young I dreamed of becoming an astronaut or tightrope walker – I practiced lots for the latter on our garden fence!


11.bag I’m a bag lady! In the lucky sense of the word  – I love bags and can’t pass a bag shop without popping by for a quick look.  What can I say – I’m addicted!


Questions to My Nominees:

  1. Why did you start your blog?
  2. How do you deal with a setback at work/rejection letter etc?
  3. How do you celebrate a success?
  4. What’s the one crazy activity/thing you wish you’d tried but never dared?
  5. Which of your posts has got the most views? Can you post a link to it
  6.  If you could go anywhere in the world, where would that be?
  7.  What advice would you give your younger self?
  8. What is one of your most embarrassing moment?
  9. What’s your favourite drink? (Alcoholic or non-alcoholic)
  10. If you could travel into the past, which era would you go to and why?
  11. What is your most favourite (clean) joke?

Finally, to my nominations for this Liebster Award. It has been very difficult to choose as there are so many wonderful blogs out there and I have become friends with so many of you. I apologise if any of you have a no award policy which I failed to spot!  Also I had trouble finding out the number of followers for some, so if some are not quite matching the ‘rules’, please forgive me.


If you wish to participate further in the Liebster awards, here are the ‘Rules’.

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and link to their blog.

2. Nominate 11 other bloggers to Liebster Awards 2016.

3. Answer 11 questions from the blogger who nominated you (see below)

4. Tell your readers 11 random facts about yourself.

5. Give your candidates 11 questions to answer on their blog when they publish their appointment.

Finally, it is Mothering Sunday tomorrow in the UK and I want to wish all mothers out there a very special day filled with warmth and joy.


53 thoughts on “Why Only Eleven?

  1. Pingback: Now for something different | Facets of a Muse

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    1. Many thanks for the reblog, Mary Ann and no rush at all with the Liebster Award – just in your own time or if it’s too time consuming I totally understand. Just wanted to say how much I enjoy your blog and your writings.

  3. Pingback: Kyrosmagica is Now Award Free | K Y R O S M A G I C A

  4. Somewhere there is a very large stash of unwanted encyclopedia, isn’t there? 😦 😦 I function on coffee but it gets wearing sometimes and I fancy a change. Never tried ginger tea but it might do the trick. I have a cupboard full of unloved peppermint and assorted flavours.
    Oh- this’ll make you smile! I just went to the cupboard to check and there was a box of lemon and ginger. Obviously another overwhelming success 🙂

    1. 😀 Yeah, Jo! Great you found the tea. First, have you checked the use by date? Second, do you dare to try it? Never had a lemon-flavoured one before…Amazing what you find in the back of those cupboards – during one major clear-out (must have been in a very angry / depressed mood) I discovered tins and packets ten years out of date! Of course, my husband said they would be fine. Oh, out they went!

    1. You’re right – that’s the very first story. The collection consists of seven stories and although they were not meant to be linked, that’s how they ended up. I’d highly recommend this book for any Joyce fan. Thank you so much for your comment.

  5. Mike

    Yet another interesting (and very different) blog. It was intreging to read about you eating a cigarette, but I suppose you were too young to smoke one! And who doesn’t like pasta.

    I must admit I’m a telly addict too – but mainly trying to keep up with all the programmes I save on the freeview box, a battle which I am slowly losing. I also like the smell of coffee but am not too keen on drinking it. Now tea, that is a different matter – but it has to be a cup of builders!.

    Thanks for sharing all those little snippits about yourself


    1. It was very funny in retrospect about eating the cigarette, this from someone who barely at any food. At least I was never tempted by nicotine ever again! So builder’s tea for you, is it? Not even tempted to try some peppermint?? So glad you enjoyed these snippets…I realised there was so much I could tell…but I’ll just have to keep you guessing.😀

  6. Thanks so much for your kind words Annika. I thoroughly enjoyed your post. I watch netflix at night — some of the same series as you — and sometimes remember the days that I thought tv was a waste of time — less so now unless it’s daytime…

    1. Janice, so glad you liked the post and many thanks for nominating me – this is a fun award! It’s odd, when I’m away from TV, weeks at an end, I never miss it, but once home, particularly in winter, it’s lovely to sit down in the evenings and relax. My way of stopping my spinning my mind, I reckon.

      1. I like the way you had fun with the award. You have breathed fresh life into it. TV is a great way to unwind at night–I often dose off eventually (we watch in bed).

  7. Congratulation on your much deserved award, Annika! Thank you for the nomination. Sadly, with my deadline quickly approaching, I can’t participate, but I’m honored.
    I laughed out loud when I read about you eating a cigarette. I can’t imagine how horrid that must have been!

    1. Jill, you’re welcome and I totally understand. It’s just my way of saying how much I enjoy your posts; always giving me food for thought and staying with me for weeks after. The award is time consuming but I did enjoy sharing some of my life on the post. I laugh at the cigarette incident now and so does my mother; she didn’t at the time though, driving through the snow and dark to the hospital. However, the irony is that at that stage in my life I barely ate anything but I could eat that! Ugh! Never touched one again!!😀

        1. Our mothers are saints, I reckon. My son is only slightly fussy and when he was younger I worried myself to distraction. In my early twenties I became quite ill and think this was partly down to my lack of eating and getting nutrients I needed so I (ie. long-suffering mother) gradually introduced foods – at first struggling but now I love most vegetarian dishes. It’s made life easier, I must admit.

    1. Phew, Jacqui! I’m glad I’m not the only one with these addictions – I feel better now! Do you also suffer guilt complexes when watching Netflix? ie. that you should be doing some far more productive but just can’t pull yourself away. You’re welcome for the nomination and if you have time to do it I’ll enjoy learning more about you and your life. Feel you’ve got some good stories to share…

  8. Annika, I enjoyed reading this. It was a joy to learn more about you. You are obviously a delightful person–well, maybe not during the first hour of the day, haha. If midnight is the “witching hour,” then surely the first hour of the day is “Mr. Hyde” hour. I can relate! Alas, my husband–morning person that he is–is at his most chipper during the first hour of the day which, of course, my “Mr. Hyde” self finds completely annoying.

    1. Eve, you have me laughing here, imaging the dichotomy between you and your husband’s chirpiness hours! Do the two meet in the middle of the day? So glad you enjoyed the post and it’s a great opportunity to be a bit more personal and tell of the the minutiae of everyday life. Hope you get a chance to join in.

  9. Congrats on the well-deserved award, Annika, and thanks for the nomination 😀 I loved learning more about you. I especially enjoy hearing about the antics of childhood – the great escape, practicing your balance on the fence, learning to drive by mimicking what they do on TV. Ha ha. Great imagination happening there. I used to practice swimming with my legs and feet together for the day when I’d become a mermaid 🙂 A fun post.

    1. Thank you, Diana and your nomination is so well-deserved. Your blog is a wonder and delight; always giving me reason to pause, think and look deeper within myself, whatever your topic. 😀 So, you wanted to be a mermaid! How far could you swim like that? Did you ever see ‘Splash’? I think I turned to writing even more growing up; I needed to do something with that pent-up imagination!

      1. I did see Splash, and I could swim quite a ways (though not very gracefully). Later as a scuba diver, my dreams of mermaid-dom pretty much came true. 🙂 I think we do have to grow up and gather a bit of experience to write, but always it surely helps to stay connected to the realm of the imagination that we lived in as children. There, anything is possible!

        1. I couldn’t imagine what life would be like if I hadn’t carried the magic of the childhood world with me. It not only helps the creative spirit but ensures you never get old – well, inside at least! Life under the sea is a whole different world and it must be amazing to scuba dive amongst it. Absolute brilliant that you learnt such a great skill and brought that childhood dream to reality!😀

  10. Congratulations on your nomination. Good answers and graphics. And thank you for nominating me, I appreciate that. So you wanted to be an astronaut, that is cool…

    1. You’re welcome, JC. No pressure to do the award, just my way of saying you have a very special blog and how much I like it. The irony is that after spending all my childhood dreaming of being astronaut I’m now scared of flying (and petrified during turbulence)! Still love space rockets etc…

    1. You are very welcome, Lis. Your blog is very special, each post a delight, giving me time to reflect or raising a smile on my face. 😀 We are all small in this universe! With warmest wishes

    1. Julie, I love this award for that fact; giving one the opportunity to write a bit more personal on the blog. Yep, I’m beginning to realise I was a bit of a tear-away and definitely a bit of a tom-boy! What about you? I look forward to getting to you know better if you have a chance to do the award. Many thanks for the re-blog.

  11. delphini510

    I love the way you present this Liebster Award post, both pictorially and literally.
    A pasta dish for the bride.:). Different teas during the day. Can I join your for the Ginger tea?
    Like my coffee in the morning.

    I so hope you get to visit the Space Centre and sit in a capsule.:))
    Leading the Great escape! Eating a cigarette! Something for a fussy eater. Quite a handful:)

    Thank you for my morning laugh.

    1. I’m so glad I could provide a morning laugh! Writing this I realised how many fun and silly things I’ve done in my life…so far! Quite therapeutic. Can I sit in a space capsule?? Now I’m even more excited. I’m thinking we could all meet for a tea party and natter about our various exploits? Should be great. (Coffee can be served too…)

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