A Lieb of Faith

Dear Friends,
A few weeks ago, I was honored with a Liebster by FittyUpdike. My post is titled, The Liebster Behind the Curtain. Peer recognition is truly the greatest honor of all. If you haven’t visited Fitty’s Arty Blog yet, you should. She’s an amazing tactile artist and accomplished craftsperson among many other things.

I have since been recognized by other peers. Since I have Fitty’s lovely Liebster proudly displayed on a shelf in my blog cabin, I felt I shouldn’t begin collecting pretty Liebster trophies, though, for a chocolate crown, my ‘selflessness’ would turn on a dime!

Anyone that has gone through the Liebster process knows it takes some effort to pull together. Because of this extra work, I’d like to acknowledge two amazing, fellow ‘bloggists,’ who’ve honored my blog, anntogether with nominations. Both HemmingPlay and C-Dog & Company have written Liebster questions for their nominees. I have answered both sets of deeply profound 😉 questions herewith. I apologize in advance for length. I attempt keeping my posts short, but sometimes words and their colorful relatives are necessary. I’ve added photos and art too… 🙂

HemmingPlay: This bloggist is a prolific wordsmith and an artist of words. He’s a forthright person with a terrific sense of humor. His intrinsic understanding of the human condition fuels his passionate and creative writing process. You’ll not be disappointed reading chapters from his latest book, working title: ‘Running Girl

Hemminglsplay Liebster Nominee Questions:

  1. What was the title of the first thing you remember writing? Age? I remember penning a lengthy letter to Santa outlining the benefits of owning both a banjo and a bunny – I was five. When I was 11, I set up a workstation in my room and fantasized I was Kolchak, the Night Stalker. If memory serves, I wrote cheesy articles about suburban man-eating monsters. I graduated to writing ominous things in a diary and leaving it open on my bed hoping my sisters would read how they wronged me through the course of a typical day (I wrote more than one, sorry, it was fun thinking back)…
  2. Have you ever had a dream about walking into work without any pants on? Yes. I walked in ‘pants-less,’ and everyone ran out screaming – so it was my dream, but their nightmare!
  3. Have you ever actually walked into work without pants (or dress, etc.) on? Details! I did forget to shave me legs a few times, so I may have appeared to be wearing both a skirt and pants at the same time. There was another time I walked into work with a broken nose after a weekend at the Jersey Shore, but I can’t reveal the real story 😉 (picture of my hairy look/previously shared on Facebook with friends who remember the good old days – provided here for your entertainment)hairzilla
  4. What’s the biggest challenge you have to writing regularly, and how do you overcome it? Over the last eleven years, I’ve written 10 manuscripts for the YA/MS market. Works of fantasy mostly. During that time it seemed I couldn’t get my ideas and story lines out fast enough. On 3 separate occasions, 3 manuscripts got ‘call backs’ for full reads. Nothing developed past that point, but those ‘positive rejection’ have kept me going. I know my writing needs to improve and I have much to learn, but my writing will not improve if I can’t write – right? Since I began substitute teaching along with giving children’s art lessons, my brain feels like a sponge tablet that’s been left in the desert by a band of dried-out humanoids. It has been most difficult stringing coherent thoughts together. Blogging has been a wonderful way to keep the sponge wet and hopefully with summer break nearing, I can write again.
  5. What do you read for fun? Love Jonathan Tropper’s humor. Every so often I pull an anthology off the shelf – Poe, H.G. Wells… I also began reading 100 Famous Speeches to remind me just how bad my writing is and that’s always entertaining 😉 Oh, and there’s always an interesting book variety to read for my book club. Our book reviews get quite entertaining when wine is thrown into the mix!
  6. If you could be anyone in history, who would you choose and why? I’d like to be an unsung pioneer woman. I think it would’ve taken a tremendous amount of faith, character and personal strength to build a foundation for a family in the wilderness. I would’ve liked to have lived before technology and white noise became the air we breathe. And I adore the soulful eyes of cows and horses. I’d have had a few of each. I would’ve been one of those hip pioneer woman – straddling a horse rather than taking the  old chuck wagon to the grocery store.
    C-Dog & Company: Debra Levy, animal lover, is a true champion for earth’s defenseless creatures. Often times her posts focus on ‘man’s best friend.’  She knows what we should be doing as a civilized society to aide any mistreated critters living among us. Deb wants to share and grow the bond between humans and animals.
  7. Why do you blog; why did you get started? I’m embarrassed to say I began blogging after watching the movie Julie & Julia. I thought, gosh if Julie could do it, why not me? I began my first blog several years ago, but didn’t know what I was doing. I got nervous when only 2 countries – and large numbers from those 2 countries – viewed my blog. I thought my site address was being compromised. Less dumb, years later – I read a great book, Blog Inc. by Joy Deangdeelert Cho. I did research and spoke to a women who edits an educational blog and whalah, anntogether was born 🙂
  8. If you could meet anyone, alive or dead, who would it be? Hands down – Abraham Lincoln. There is something so amazingly sincere and beautiful in his homely countenance and that’s not even delving under his stovetop…
    1. lincolnA very close second would be the artist Rosa Bonheur (Her wall-sized painting, The Horse Fair, 1853 – fueled my passion to be an artist)

    2. What is your favorite song, or piece of music, and why? For me this is always such a difficult question, I adore so many types of music and all sorts of singers across all spans of time. There is much music that reduces me to tears. Often while blogging, I’m crying a little, depending on what I’m listening to. For example, right now I’m listening to Camelot – Broadway version with Richard Burton and Julie Andrews. Before that I was listening to Barry White and before that Great Puccini Arias…and this morning Green Day…
    3. If you had to donate everything you own to a charity that you have never given to previously, which charity would you give to? WWF if they shaved their expenses back. I give to various animal charities and I’m very big with children’s organizations and cancer research – I think WWF can reach many places, but my impression is they use a high percentage of donations to pay for stuffed animals, umbrellas…
    4. If you were allowed to eat only one vegetable for the rest of your life, which one would it be? Chocolate – oh, wait you said vegetable – okay, chocolate. Oops sorry, I think my vegetable would definitely be chocolate…
    5. Two of the best books you ever read were ___? Love James Herriot’s series, beginning with All Things Great and Small. And, I never wanted Harry Potter to end (I cheated that’s 7 books)
    6. Even if you don’t have a cat or dog — cat-person or dog-person, which are you? Definitely dog, because the husband and I are big, slobbery and hairy too.
    7. lalalalal
    8. What do you do, or where do you go, to “get away”? Give me a candle, a window and quiet and I can go anywhere, oh, and chocolate.
    9. What’s your “day job” — or what do you “do” besides blogging (or is blogging your job)? I currently am a substitute teacher, I give private art lessons and sell the occasional piece of art. Someday I hope to trade this glamorous life and make enough money to buy celery and milk with the money I generate from selling my art and my writing. Oh yes, I’d love to blog the hours away too (with chocolate and a candle of course). I was once an Art Director many moons ago. I miss the days of being wined and dined and carrying a big business card…but mostly I miss the companionship of other crazy artists/designers – we worked hard – deadlines and all – but we had fun!
    10. What’s your favorite number? Easy 13 – I know many a folk think it bad, but it was my high school softball number and it gave me confidence – 13 and I were like 2 peas in 1 pod (see I used other numbers as not to offend).
    11. Name a personal hero  . . . My mom. She had an extremely difficult life and was asked to be an adult at a tender young age. She had many opportunities to get married off – as she was quite beautiful – but she worked hard and paid her way through college, graduating with honors. I have 5 other sibs and we are all just about 1 year apart, we were all born in different states (my father was in the F.B.I.) and back then the agents got transferred quite a bit – through her rough life and then rearing us kiddies her smile never faded. Today, I have difficulty judging people’s ages because my mom is 78, but she has the heart and soul of one much younger.me and mom
      Thank you for reading and have a beautiful Sunday 🙂
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41 thoughts on “A Lieb of Faith

    • Entertaining questions – and thank you again.
      And while I’m speaking here, I’ve been honored with a Versatile Blogger award, and I’d like to pass one on to you too, supremely deserved – is that okay?
      AnnMarie 🙂

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      • Dear AnnMarie,

        I’m not sure of the protocol of these things, but I was nominated once before for that one, back in January. As I recall, it required me to reveal 7 things about myself. I think I’ve revealed most things that are PG- rated already. And the statute of limitations hasn’t run out on a couple more, so….

        But thank you. It is genuinely touching that someone like you would think enough of what I’ve done here to make the gesture. That is the greatest honor I can imagine, as I’ve come to view you as one of the more appealing, talented and interesting bloggers and artists I’ve found here. Gives me quite the little tingle, actually. 🙂

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      • Yes, I was unsure of protocol as well. Truth be told I didn’t have time to do research with my son’s football game this morning and baseball game this afternoon and getting daughter to work ’cause hubbie works sundays…I’m whining, can you tell 😉
        But I’d noticed you had listed my blog, so I felt I should answer your oh, so very entertaining questions (I expected nothing less). And I did want to give you a Liebster too!
        And I thank you for your ego-puffing compliment 🙂
        If I wasn’t always trying to watch my girlish figure, I’d gladly take on the extra head weight!!!
        AnnMarie 🙂

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      • On my word as an honest Italian with no mafia affiliations, I will give your chapter a thorough read this coming weekend. I want to read it and not just glide the eyes over your words. I’ve got an action-packed and fun-filled week and I’d like to devote serious read time to this. I hope that’s okay.
        AnnMarie 🙂
        ps I’m honored you asked 🙂

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      • I just spent about 30 minutes writing up a mini review of chapter 4 and I’m not sure if it went through – I sent it via gmail – please let me know if you received it or not. If it didn’t go through, I’ll need to enlist my magic tech children to help me tomorrow –
        AnnMarie

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      • Oh darn, the same thing happened when I tried to send email for the kids with something for school – there is an old account and I think when I wrote the email it went in the old mail – so it’s probably stuck in limbo. My darlings have gone to sleep (it’s tough being a teen) I’ll ask them to figure it out in the morn – if they can’t I’ll simply rewrite and sent vie email – but I’ll do it directly through my blog gmail -darn, darn – sorry – ‘itl tomorrow then…darn, darn, darn…
        Hope you’re well otherwise 🙂

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      • I’m doing well. Lazy day. My wife’s retiring, so we’ve been making the rounds of retirement parties, had a big one last night with too much food and drink.

        If you want, I could send a test email to your gmail account and then you could just reply to that.

        But I am really tickled that you’re willing to do this. I really am. 🙂

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      • There is another gmail account for an SMTP server connected with the kids’ school website and I think it went through that. The compose box came up so I thought it was okay – but I’ve been wrong many times before. So if my kiddies can’t find that dumb outbox for that other gmail – I’ll just rewrite and send it through my blog gmail –
        Big congratulations to your lovely wife – I’m sure she’s looking forward to basking in the sun and eating bonbons 🙂
        I’m writing this with one eye open – I wish it was a party making me tired but it was housecleaning and oodles of running around today – so ’til tomorrow my friend 🙂

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      • According to the giant husband, I’ve been snoring of late. I’m supposed to be morphing into the other side of 50 with grace and dignity. Late night blogging is granting me wondrous sleep.
        AnnMarie 🙂

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  1. Oh my word….I love reading everything you write. I loved finding out more about you. We are alike in so many ways…it makes me giggle. Thank you, AnnMarie, for lettings us see deeper into all the wonderful things that make up you….held together by my favorite, chocolate!!

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    • Chocolate!!! Another reason you’re a wonderful and ‘splendiforous’ gal, Skye! 🙂
      And thank you, as always, for your heart-filling words. I like giggling too, so I try to make others giggle along whenever I can – sometimes I’m successful, many other times I do quite the opposite. 😉
      AnnMarie
      Happy gorgeous Sunday!

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    • Is that really you? Cool!!!
      I’m so happy you made it over here! Yes, I’ve been in a remarkable place since Madonna calmed down 😉 Thanks for stopping by, I’d ask you in, but the place is a mess. We’ll have to go to Dolores’s where we’ll find good things to eat 😉
      AnnMarie 🙂

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    • Back then, I’d wash my hair, braid it while damp then brush it out. I also spent many a college class day, basking in the educational sun. Back then, I never understood why the boys went running in the opposite direction. Today, whenever I look at that particular photo and imagine my 6-ft (with heels) self dolled out like a Revlon Amazon – I get a bad case of the giggles. I would have sprinted the other way too!
      AnnMare 🙂
      Thanks ever so much for stopping by 🙂

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      • I think we all did crazy things when we were young, look at the clothes you are wearing when you were young…..but I still thing your hair looked lovely ! mine is a nightmare, always was and always will be !

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      • Your words reminded me of that old Crosby, Stills & Nash tune –
        “…Don’t you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry, So just look at them and sigh and know they love you..”
        And thank you for the hair compliment – I’m a typical woman in that department and never like my hair either 🙂
        AnnMarie
        I have my fingers crossed that my ‘crazy’ genes weren’t passed on… So far, (knocking on wood) my kids, seem so much more together, than I ever was…

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  2. What fun answers to these questions. I love all the pictures, too. I’ve seen The Horse Fair at the Met in New York and been mesmerized by it. Those big, beautiful horse bodies…

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    • Thank you ever so much. I like humor when I am lucky enough to pull it off (unfortunately, my family doesn’t think I’m as funny as I think I am 😉 ).
      Ms. Bonheur’s painting caught my horse-loving eye when I was 11. I remember first seeing this enormous painting full of astoundingly rendered figures. At the time I just assumed – being surrounded by so many of her male contemporaries – The Horse Fair’s creator was a man. Well, my joy exploded right there in the Met, I think I may have even yelled out – “A GIRL PAINTED THIS!!!”
      AnnMarie 🙂

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  3. Such a beautiful picture of you with your mother! You are always so thoughtful with your blog — I enjoy your posts immensely. Happy Sunday. – Fawn

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    • Thank you, Fawn. Yes, that’s one of my most favorites of us together 🙂 I’m so glad you’re enjoying the posts – I enjoy writing them.
      I hope all your patients continue to recover. Knowing they have a strong, caring person like you in their lives must help immensely.
      I’m enjoying what’s left of Sunday…
      AnnMarie 🙂

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  4. Oh, AnnMarie — you’ve done double-duty of answering another set of questions (well, actually 2 sets), and answering them so sincerely and with such humor … and, of course, with your terrific artwork! And I’ve got to comment on your post title: brilliant! So creative and funny … and darn, I wish I’d thought of it! 🙂 Finally, let me just say that from reading your answers I’m planning to: 1) watch “Julie & Julia” (I’d forgotten all about that movie), 2) read Blog Inc. by Joy Deangdeelert Cho (sounds fascinating!), and 3) keep encouraging you to send out your manuscripts. I’m a little bit in the same boat, writing-wise, so we’ll definitely have to encourage each other to “keep at it.” Keep blogging, drawing, painting, loving your fur babies (and your human babies and husband as well)!

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    • I really enjoyed, Julie & Julia – it has the distinction of being part of my ‘sleeper stack,’ (movies I enjoy at 2 am when I can’t sleep.) This post title came to me – I was lucky – hey, once in awhile the brain does me a favor 😉 The book, Blog Inc., has many tips and suggestions for beginning bloggers and it is written in a reader-friendly style. The author’s has an extremely popular design blog – Oh Joy! if you want to check it out.
      Yes, let’s push each other onward, upward and publishing bound. What I’d really like to do this summer, is go through my personal slush pile and rework some of my manuscripts and see where the words take me.
      I was annoyed with the littlest fur baby last night – he woke me up – I tell you, the nerve 🙂
      The human babies and even the hubbie are so much easier to feed and walk 😉
      AnnMarie 🙂
      Have a furry-tastic week!
      And I truly appreciate the kind words of encouragement…

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    • You discovered how to become my fast friend. The first and only rule of my exclusive club – you must love chocolate above all else. I don’t know what would be above chocolate anyway – last I checked it was the topper on the food pyramid 😉
      AnnMarie 🙂
      Have a wonderful week, Kristen!

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  5. Anntogether…where do all your wonderful thoughts come from…I enjoy reading all you write…thanks for the pleasures…also thanks for the lovely compliments…Mom

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    • Wow, I much appreciate your viewing so many posts – and I thank you for the kind words.
      Ah, a fellow 13’er. 13 remains in my heart – I hit really well and I struck out lots too 🙂 wearing 13…
      AnnMarie 🙂
      Have a wonderful Wednesday!

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