admiration and appreciation

Shantelle, the brilliant young woman behind A Writer's Heart and author of A Dream Not Imagined, nominated Poetree for the Liebster Award! After you're finished admiring her blog (and adding her novella to your to-read list), please do come back and check out the other awesome blogs linked at the end of this post! Oh, and if it interests you, feel free to read the stuff in-between. :)

  1. Link back to the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Answer the 11 new questions.
  3. Nominate other bloggers (however many or few as you'd like).
  4. Create 11 new questions for the bloggers you nominated.
  5. Notify the new nominees of their award.

Shantelle's questions:

1. What is the driving passion of your life?
Yaweh. And the innocent hope that, through small acts of great love, this broken creation may be restored to a beautiful state of shalom.

(also dark chocolate. and horses. and trees. and the ability to travel and experience at least a tiny portion of this incomprehensibly enormous, beautiful, greatly diverse world. and the dream that I might someday have an actual farm.)

2. Can you name a favorite character from a movie you've seen recently?
Live action: Nelson Mandela (played by Morgan Freeman) in Invictus.
Animated: Dug in Up.

3. What's one book (or chapter, verse, whatever...) of the Bible that has particularly touched you and why?
In college, when my dog died, my roommate left some chocolates and and a note with the following passage on my pillow:

"Why are you so downcast, oh my soul?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise Him,
my savior and my God."

Psalm 42 (which repeats those lines over and over) has become one of my favorite psalms. Its lamenting verses often reflect so closely my own soul, and it provides a small ray of hope that doesn't allow the reader to sit still. "For I will yet praise Him" means that there is something yet to be grateful about, and therefore we must do something (praise).

4. How tall are you? *smiles*
4 feet, 11 1/2 inches (I'm an unusually tall hobbit...)

5. What's one thing a book needs to have in order to make it a favorite for you?
Hobbits. Also elves and dwarves and wizards.
Seriously, though, there's definitely no magic recipe that makes a book one of my favorites. I like realistic, relatable characters with a good deal of depth to them, as well as an engaging plot. Bonus points if it makes me cry (or laugh).

6. How did you start and what's your favorite thing about blogging?
I started blogging to get into the habit of writing at least one poem every day, and it worked for a while. After a several-month hiatus, I decided to start back up again with intermittent poems and regular book reviews. This was two-fold: to get free books for review and to start working towards freelance book editing (which I've given up on for the time being).

My favorite thing about blogging? It keeps me writing.

7. What's something exciting that has happened in your life recently?
I went to Thailand with my husband and his family. It was awesome.

8. Why do you write (blogs, books, whatever)?
I find talking about emotions incredibly difficult, but writing them is as easy as picking up a pencil and opening my soul. Even the shyest of introverts cannot hold everything inside. Like everyone else, we need to have an outlet. For me, it's writing poetry.

9. Can you describe (or find a picture of) a different-era outfit that you'd love to wear?
I like blue jeans. A lot. (Except when I'm hiking; then I want lightweight cargo pants.) Outfits from other eras typically involve dresses, and while I do enjoy wearing a dress on occasion, it's not something I'd want to run around in everyday. But, since you're asking, I suppose I'd tolerate something like this:

10. Favorite songs?
In no particular order, here is a random selection of songs that might be considered favorites of mine:

"Honey Bear" and "Blue Ridge Mountains" by The Steel Wheels
"Cowboy Take Me Away" and "Wide Open Spaces" by Dixie Chicks
"Concerning Hobbits" by Howard Shore
"Oceans" by Hillsong United
"The Harvester" by Brandon Heath
"Rise Up" by Matt Maher
"Promise of a Lifetime" by Kutless
"Praise You in This Storm" by Casting Crowns
Hymns: "Come Thou Fount," "My Life Flows On," "Will You Let Me Be Your Servant," and "Be Thou My Vision"
...and pretty much anything by Third Day or Lunasa

(aka I don't have a favorite song)

11. Any advice for your fellow Christian bloggers/writers?
Be yourself. Don't try to copy the style of that really cool blogger who makes you laugh in every single one of their posts and who has 253 followers. They get lots of comments, sure, but they're not you. Everyone has something unique to bring to this world, and you have the wonderful opportunity to weave words from your soul onto a page and share your passion with your readers. Be honest, be kind, and be yourself.

my nominations:
(I'm trying to not tag the same people I nominated last time)

Rachelle Rea at Inspiring Daring
Opal at Opal Swirls
Rachel Coker
Chloe M. Kookogey at Living on Literary Lane

my questions:
  1. How long have you been blogging?
  2. Why do you blog?
  3. What do you find challenging about blogging?
  4. What is your favorite food dessert?
  5. And while we're on the topic of food, do you prefer tea or coffee? Is there a specific kind you like, and do you have a special mug?
  6. What is your favorite tree--either a particular tree or a species in general?
  7. Who is your favorite poet, and why? (Or singer/songwriter. They're poets.)
  8. What do you enjoy doing on a sunny day?
  9. And on a rainy day? (if it's reading, tell us about your favorite reading spot!)
  10. What is the book genre you read the most often, and why?
  11. Do you have any advice for fellow bloggers?

*The pictures in answers 2 and 5 were borrowed from Bing images, and the one in 9 from Pinterest.


  1. I really like the point you made about being yourself when blogging; you might be able to imitate another blogger pretty well, but everyone would be missing out on your unique perspective. It's so true that we all have something unique to bring to this world! :)

    1. Thanks! It's a bit of advice I give myself every time I write a blog post -- I struggle with authenticity as much as anyone. :)

    2. Great post, Serena!! I enjoyed reading it!! :) Yes, you are an unusually tall hobbit, ;D

      And Thailand, that's so cool!!

      Great stuff!! So glad you could do this post! :)


    3. Thanks, Shantelle (and thanks for tagging me)! I can either be short, or I can be a tall hobbit, so... ;)

  2. I know you just did a tag, so no pressure, but if you're interested, I wanted to let you know that I tagged you for the Favorite Screen Characters tag over at my blog!

  3. Thanks so much for nominating me! I'm terribly sorry for only just now seeing this!

    1. hahahaha, you dredged up a post so old that it still has that awful courier font I used to use! :) Anywho...

      You're welcome! And no problem--I totally understand failing technology (my computer screen recently bit the dust).