Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Liebster Blog Award

Laura over at My Baffling Brain has given me the Liebster Award.  Thanks Laura!

"The Liebster Blog Award is an award given from bloggers to bloggers that are small to medium in size or up and coming in the blogsphere. Liebster is German for "favorite." The award is a way to give beginning bloggers some worthy attention, make connections and let readers learn a little more about you."

1. Answer the 11 questions.

2. Give 11 facts about yourself.

3. Nominate 11 other lovely bloggers.

4. Post 11 new questions for your new nominees.


1. Do you believe in ghosts/aliens/the supernatural?  I enjoy movies about ghosts and the supernatural, though I don't believe in it.  I tend to think that anything that appears supernatural likely has a scientific explanation, and I'd love to know what those explanations are!  As for aliens, I think it's more likely than not that there's extraterrestrial life out there.  The universe is so big, after all.  When I'm asked whether there's life out there, I remember the movie Contact.  "If it is just us . . . seems like an awful waste of space."
2. Why do you blog?  I've always wanted to be a writer, and I kept hearing that writers of today need to have an online presence.  Many people suggested that blogging was a good way to share your work and get your name out there.  So here I am.  I'm glad I decided to take that advice.
3. What's your favorite season?  Summer.  There are lots of opportunities for fun family activities during the summer.
4. What is your favorite book/series?  Harry Potter is my favorite book series.  I love others as well, but Harry Potter will always hold a spell over me.    :-)
5. What do you want for Christmas this year?  I want a new laptop.  My laptop is broken.  It still functions, but the screen hangs halfway off of it, so I've had to get used to typing and seeing my words at an angle.
6. Where is your favorite place to relax?  A coffee shop.  Now that I have two kids, I rarely get a chance to do this.  It's probably been almost 3 years, in fact, but I love the atmosphere.  It's a great place to write, or read, and have a good cup of coffee, and maybe a good snack.
7. The best moment of your life so far?  This is a difficult question.  I'm married and I have two kids, so that accounts for three terrific times that are especially hard to rank.  And just so we're clear, childbirth was anything but spectacular, but when it's all over, you're left with something quite fantastic.  So forgive me if I can't choose.  I'll just leave you with those three and call it good.
8. Do you have any hobbies?  Growing up I built and launched model rockets.  I also enjoy amateur astronomy.
9. What is your job? Is it what you envisioned yourself doing as a child?  Right now I am a stay at home mom who writes and blogs.  I always wanted to stay home and write books as a kid (when I wasn't busy being an astronaut and visiting other planets, that is), though I assumed I'd make some money doing that.  However, staying home and taking care of the kids avoids the large cost of daycare, and hopefully I can continue to carve out a place for myself in the world of writing.
10. Do you play any instruments?  I played the clarinet from 5th grade through the end of high school, though I wasn't a virtuoso by any means.  I also played around with a keyboard for several years, though I never took lessons for that one.
11. What's your favorite fairy tale?  There are some good ones.  I like Beauty and the Beast because Belle is cool.  I also like Hansel and Gretel.  It's gruesome, yes, but those kids fought back and the witch got what she deserved.

Now, to go along with the first question on this particular list of questions, I'd like to post this video.  It contains some great information about the possibility of extraterrestrial life, along with some "fascinatingly disturbing" speculations.

Eleven Facts About Myself
  1. I'm passionate about space exploration, and I worry that the United States isn't doing enough to promote the importance of it.  It's the sci-fi fanatic in me.
  2. I worry about the political divide in this country.  I have my own political position, of course, but I worry when I see people calling someone else horrible names based purely on party affiliation.  We'll never solve our problems if we can't see each other as human beings.
  3. I really like pie.  I also really like π.
  4. Every time I read specific advice about how to write well, I cringe on the inside as I recall my own violations of that rule.
  5. As a kid, I liked to eat lemons.  And while other people would add sugar to make the experience more palatable, I always added a bit of salt to enhance the pucker effect.
  6. Around age 12, I ate Altoids all the time.  They were absolutely my favorite mint.  I also started to challenge myself to see how many I could stand to eat at the same time. This is how I learned that eating 20 Altoids at one time makes it hurt to breathe because the chilling effect of the mint is so strong.  I still like Altoids, but I don't do anything crazy like this when I eat them.  Doing that many at one time just means you run out of them too fast.
  7. Science is one of my favorite subjects, so I frequently peruse science articles when I'm not busy with 50 million other things.  I'm not as scientifically gifted as I'd like to be, but I make it a point to know as much about the latest science news as I can.
  8. Aside from watching science fiction, which is my favorite genre, my second favorite thing to watch is documentaries.  This includes feature film length documentaries, and documentary style shows like Nova, The Universe, and other things of that nature.  What can I say?  I like to learn things.
  9. I call myself a cynical idealist.  This may be an oxymoron of sorts, but it makes sense in my head.  I see that the world is riddled with problems, and I have no doubt it will remain that way because there will always be the selfish among us to cause trouble.  Yet, I see societies in science fiction where people have learned to move past self-centered motivations and have learned to do better by one another.  I know such a society could be possible to an extent, though possibility is not synonymous with inevitability.  Let's just say I know we can do better, and I think we can if we try, but I'm not holding my breath either.
  10. If we encounter aliens, I want to be in the group that makes first contact. There's no reason why I would be, of course, but I still think it would be really cool.
  11. I wish I had the power of telekinesis.  It would be so handy, especially in dealing with my two boys!
Okay, here's where I'm going to diverge from the rules a little bit.  I'm supposed to pass the award on to 11 other people.  Hunting down that many blogs is a lot of work, and more importantly, it takes a lot of time.  Now, I'll do something else instead that I hope comes across as mildly creative and fun.  I'll offer this award up to anyone who wants to answer my 11 questions.  Or, you can feel free to answer one or two of them in the comments if you feel so inclined.

Now, here's the actual fun part.  These are not personal questions.  They are instead trivia questions garnered from science fiction movies/TV shows/books that I enjoy.  Trivia can be great fun, and I hope at least a couple of you make an effort to participate.  If you want to accept the award, do your best to answer them, and feel free to investigate the ones you don't know.  I assure you, it could be great fun hunting down some of these answers.
  1. (From Star Trek TNG) How many lights are there?
  2. What does the title Fahrenheit 451 signify?
  3. In what sci-fi show might you expect to see a Browncoat?
  4. What weapon might a Klingon use in battle?
  5. What is the name of the ice planet in The Empire Strikes Back?
  6. Name the movie this quote comes from.  "What does God need with a starship?"
  7. What is the Kobayashi Maru?
  8. How large is a womp rat, and where would you expect to find one?
  9. Name the movie this quote comes from.  "I'm sorry, Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that."
  10. How fast does a DeLorean have to go to travel in time?
  11. Now here's an easy one for the geeks out there.  Name one reason why Joss Whedon is awesome.
I know that last one isn't really a question, nor is it trivia, but I say it's valid.


  1. You're welcome! I can think of many reasons why Joss Whedon is awesome, but here's the first one that comes to my mind: he creates really strong female characters.
    Great answers :)

  2. Did any of your rocket launches end badly? And I bet twenty Altoids at once was painful.
    Congratulations on the award!

  3. I wonder why it is that I can answer all the Trek questions (1, 4, 6, 7) without hesitation and only half the others? Good trivia though. And congrats on the award!

  4. Congrats on the award! I played clarinet too! Only from 5th to end of high school and I haven't touched it since. Oh well!