The Liebster Award

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As I was browsing my WordPress Reader today, I found a lovely entry by a friend and fellow blogger (Cooking For The Other Half) who had been nominated for the Liebster award…and who in turn nominated me for said award! She kindly explained the award in her post and I fell in love with the idea (and the name which in German means “favorite”). Here’s what it is:

~ This award is given to new or up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers.
~ The award is then passed along to other bloggers in the same category to help spread the word and support one another.
~ Each blogger should post 11 random facts about themselves.
~ Answer the questions the tagger has set for you, then create 11 new questions for the bloggers you pass the award to.
~ Choose 11 new bloggers (with less than 200 followers) to pass the award to and link them in your post.
~ Go back to their page and tell them about the award.
~ No tag backs (aka, don’t nominate the person who nominated you).

I thought to myself, what better way to have a sort of come back to Indugling in Guilty Pleasures than by a little fun bio of myself through the eyes of my dear friend’s questions?! I am planning to start throwing French life recipes your way including how to make homemade Spaetzle and reviews of vegetarian products in France and Germany, because…you know you’re curious! So here we go to a more active, delicious 2013…

1. If you could have lunch with a famous person (living or dead), who would it be and why?
Julia Child. Absolutely without a doubt, question, or regret in mind. Although opera singers and family members come to mind, Julia is a huge hero of mine and someone I consider a role model and mentor. She was kind, extremely intelligent, and constantly wanted to challenge herself and put herself out there when in a foreign culture. She fell in love with something and by golly she followed it to the ends of the Earth and shared it with the world. Not to mention I want to taste her cooking and hear her voice in person. Speaking of which, this makes me so incredibly happy and I watch it any time my mood slumps slightly: Julia Child Set To Music. I’ve been walking around the city singing “Cook and cook and keep on cooking…” for weeks now…

2. If you could play hooky for a week from work, what would you do?
So many things!! If I had to settle on just one thing I would have to say running away to a cabin in the woods with a grand piano and a roaring fire place and spend cozy nights in with the Boy while hiking, kayaking, and exploring during the day time. There is nothing like escaping to the depths of nature that breaths life back into you.

3. What is your all-time favorite meal?
Hoo-boy…This one changes every time I have a new, amazing meal…At the moment all I can think about is the Spaetzle a la creme from the Marche de Noel…It’s spaetzle, lardons, onions, and a creamy sauce made even better with a dash of mustard accompanied by vin chaud (mulled wine) and wandering around the marche with friends. Now, you all know I have a sweet tooth, so any favorite meal must be capped off with a decadent dessert – so, depending on the season, a gooey chocolate cake with fudgey icing or some kind of tarte au citron. Yummm.

4. What are your three go-to beauty products?
There are four things I put on every day, so I’ll just be honest and tell you all of them. I use Urban Decay’s SunBaked bronzer as eyeshadow, define the eyes with a black liquid liner (don’t really have a favorite…I’m currently using one from a French discount make up store. La classe, quoi), and finish off with Maybelline’s long-lasting and waterproof mascara which makes your eyelashes miles long! The fourth, which is almost not a beauty product but an essential element of my life (yes, it’s an addiction) is Blistex’ Silk & Shine chapstick.

5. Coffee or tea and why?
Tea! Partially because of my Scottish maman and heritage, and partially because I just find it more comforting than coffee. I do go for the occasionally latte when I really need an energy boost, but tea will give me the wake-up call I need and it comes in so many flavors for the many moods and trials we face!

6. What makes you feel better when everything sucks?
As aforementioned, the Julia Child remix, tea, singing or playing piano to go through any emotion I need to, and my friends. Friends are truly a remedy for any ailment at any time and anywhere.

7. Who do you call the most?
I am not a huge fan of calling people or receiving calls to be completely honest. It’s a bit ridiculous and I think it stems from spending way too many hours on the phone as a teen – a kind of retribution? So it’s probably Maman, Dad, or the Boy.

8. If you could go back in time and talk to yourself as a 15-yr-old, what advice would you give?
Hey, girl, start looking into opera. And look for the LoMonaco technique. You will thank yourself later, and man, will you discover a whole new world!

9. If you could go ahead in the future and talk to yourself in 10 years, what would you hope to see?
Ideally an opera singer with a steadily blooming career with a comfy, cozy home that includes the love of my life and a big, fluffy doggy. But if that’s not the case I want to see a woman who loves herself and has gone after all of her dreams with passion and determination. I hope to see someone who continues to look to the future as full of hope and opportunity and shares that attitude with everyone around her. But there better be a dog. Jussayin’.

10. What is your biggest regret?
Unfortunately, something too personal to discuss on a public forum, which is related to the regret itself.

11. What is your greatest accomplishment?
Seeing one of my students fall in love with a language. Unforgettable.

And now for my nominees!! Drumroll please (and apologies that there aren’t 11, I need to start reading more new blogs!)

Lauren @ A l’aise fraise!
Mina @ Little Miss Frenchified
John @ Stolen Says
Elena @ Nomadicon

So, dear friends:
1. Why did you start blogging?

2. What is your greatest fear?

3. What would you do in life if you didn’t need to have a job?

4. If you could learn one new thing, what would it be?

5. How would you describe the word “awkward”?

6. What is your first food memory?

7. If you could throw a dinner party for a guest of honor from any time period (real or fictional), who would it be and why?

8. What do you do when you’re down in the dumps?

9. If you could go to any place in the world, or the universe for that matter, where would you go?

10. For what are you most grateful?

11. What would you most like to be remembered for?

And now, to thank you all for reading this far…an amazing recipe for Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies by the beloved A l’Aise Fraise! I’ve made them multiple times and die for them every time…Just a side note: because you cannot get the same kind of salted butter in the U.S., use American salted butter and substitute about 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt for a full recipe amount.

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