Liebster Award – The kindness of strangers.

The Liebster Blog Award rules are: 1. Make a post thanking and linking the person who nominated you. 2. Include the Liebster Award sticker in the post. 3. Nominate 10 other bloggers who you feel are worthy of this award. 4. Answer the ten questions asked to you by the person who nominated you, and make ten questions of your own for your nominees. 5. Copy these rules in the post. 6. ALL THE NOMINEES ARE FREE TO ACCEPT OR REJECT THE NOMINATION.

My blog post!

Wow! So this morning I woke up to the thrilling news that I’ve been nominated for this award, what makes it even more exciting is that I’m brand new to this! I’ve always wanted to be a writer but other things have clouded my way, mainly confidence but I’ve had a lot of lovely things happen the last few days and I am going to write my blog about the kindness of strangers.

The fabuloso Silence Killed the Dinosaurs  nominated me for this and I’m ever so grateful. She writes honest posts about how anxious just living can make you and how difficult it can be just to do the day to day things people take for granted. She is also brilliantly funny and draws a mean dinosaur among other things! Her pictures never fail to amuse me. (Except the furniture distressing one, I am genuinely disturbed by that one!)

The timing of this nomination and the title of my post are relevant too, last night was very exciting for me, I messaged one of the biggest bloggers I know, who I’ve followed for years and talked about with my friends and…..she messaged me back!! (Seriously, that is like meeting a celebrity for me, although she is adamant she is just a normal mum!) Not only did she message me back, she sent me over to twitter and followed me and introduced me to people that can help me make myself more visible.

I was so amazed, if I’m honest, I didn’t really expect to hear anything back from her, with 125k followers, I assumed she would be inundated with messages just like mine and that my words would be lost under a mountain of others. So what does this tell me? That actually, despite the stereotypes that women can have for being catty or unfriendly, we are actually very lovely to each other most of the time.

I feel this most keenly with motherhood. There seems to be this insane pressure, what do I mean seems to, it’s so well documented, there is this huge thing about competition amongst some mothers. When you go to a playgroup and say, ‘Oh I’m so proud, my little pickle can hold a breadstick by himself!’, and they look at you slightly pityingly and say something like, ‘Oh well my child of the same age has just completed the Dorchester hotel’s top chef course, complete with a pastry course’ (Just to clarify, I have no idea if this is a real thing, just in case you wanted to get your 6 month old signed up!! 😉 )

I am the first to admit to the reality of motherhood, why shouldn’t I? Yes my children are awesome, and funny, and wonderful and I love them to little tiny bits but my word can they being annoying, and messy, sticky, often smelly, whingy and definitely irritating at times.  I rely far too much on tv just to get through the day, (Mr Tumble is a godsend, but I can feel my brain exploding when I watch him, and don’t get me started on Rastamouse!), but that is how motherhood is for a lot of women, I had hoped to be creating craft masterpieces with them every morning but I’ve apologised for that ridiculous arrogance in a previous post!

I’m currently writing this hiding in the bathroom! (Don’t call NSPCC, Daddy is downstairs!)

If no-one tells it straight, how it really is, warts, worms, tears and all, these unsure mamas are going to feel worse about themselves, less confident, maybe avoid playgroup or stay at home more. We need to stand up and be united, motherhood can be really really really crap! It can also be really fantastic, but if you are honest about the bad and the good, you can support each other through it all.

Look for the mum or dad at playgroup with the anxious look on their face and go over and say hi, when you pass a tantruming toddler in a shop smile and say; ‘they pick the best spots don’t they?!’ so they know they are not alone, if you see a mum trying to feed a new baby while their toddler runs riot, offer to get her a drink, or engage the toddler for 5 minutes.

These little gestures will only take a tiny bit of your day, but could change someone else’s whole mood for the better. I think solidarity is important in all humans, smile at people as you walk around the shops, say hi to someone at the bus stop, compliment someone on their shoes or dress, you never know what it will lead to, we all need to stop being afraid that everyone will think we’re a bit odd for engaging strangers….or maybe just embrace the oddness, because that open friendliness our grandparents talked of, doors unlocked, whole communities raising children, seems to have been a bit lost somewhere along the way.

Too many people are isolated or made to feel their children are a nuisance but I often find if I make some kind of contact, a grimace, a roll of the eyes to the person shooting looks at us when small boy is screaming, it is often all in my head and actually they are wondering where his jumper is from or remembering their days with a toddler.

Although some people are genuinely just mean and grumpy and you should feel sorry for them because all that bitterness will cause an ulcer! I will admit to actually sticking my tongue out at one seriously mean lady after all my other attempts at friendliness fell flat. The look of annoyance that crossed her face definitely made me feel better at the end of a pretty crappy day! Plus it stopped the tantrum in it’s tracks as small boy was very impressed with me, win win! 😀

Now the questions, been looking forward to this!

1. What is your favourite dinosaur?

Ooh way hard, I think the purple spotted pinkosauras just wins this!

2. You are cursed by a fairy with way too much time on her hands. For the rest of your life you will have endless access to books and be able to read them as quickly as you like, but you will only be able read either fiction or non-fiction (not both). Fiction or non-fiction?

Fiction, I get enough real life at home! 😉

3. What achievement are you most proud of?

Hmmm, I should say my children but actually it’s the half marathon I managed to complete last September!

4. You get to pick a superpower that everyone else in the world will have except for you. What is it?

Perfect tea making! Then everywhere I go my tea will be awesome and no-one will ever ask me to make a cup!

5. What is your favourite fairy tale and why? (Or, if you don’t like fairy tales, why don’t you like fairy tales?)

This is tough. I think Roald Dahl’s version of red riding hood where she leaves with a wolf skin coat and pig leather suitcases!

6. What motivated you to start your blog?

I have always wanted to write and I finally have the confidence to give it a go!

7. An eccentric great aunt you never met or heard of before leaves you a time machine in her will. When do you travel to first?

A bit soppy but I would deffo go back and see my granny and tell her I was sorry for turning into a stroppy teenager and not getting a chance to tell her how much she meant to me before she died.

8. What form does your boggart take? (Translation for muggles: What is it that you most fear?)

Deffo a spider and I would in no way be able to imagine rollerskates on it. Would probably have a heart attack first!

9. The previous fairy has a brother who not only has too much time on his hands but also a questionable sense of humour. He curses you so that, for the rest of your life, you can only communicate in either Venn diagrams or flowcharts. Which do you pick?

Going to go with flow charts as I have no time to google Venn charts! 😀

10. What kind of music do you like?

Hmmm, currently anything that isn’t specifically created for children!!

My nominations

Ok so I am so new to this that I haven’t had a proper chance to look round yet and so I am simply going to nominate the bloggers that have interacted with me so far! Much appreciated everyone, every like and follow makes me smile a lot!

roamwildandfree

candidkay

foodfellowshipandwine

everywordyousay

mypersonalteenlife

nickysdaywithautism

inalibrary

storyshucker

lyricsandchocolate

intefangordetdet

Now, the questions!

  1. Where is your favourite place to watch the sunset?
  2. Which country are you from and what is the best thing about it?
  3. How do you like your tea?
  4. Who do you write your blog for?
  5. If you had to paint the whole of your house just one colour and keep it for the next ten years, what would you choose?
  6. What is your dream job?
  7. If you could only eat one food for the rest of time, what would you choose?
  8. Who is the most irritating celebrity who you think least deserves their fame?
  9. By the sea or by a lake?
  10. What is your favourite cake?

Wow so again, huge thanks for the nomination and I hope you all have as much fun answering my questions as I’ve had thinking them up!

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