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Lovely Kathryn at the brilliant The Business of Introverts has nominated me for a Liebster blog award, which is rather happy-making 🙂

The idea is that:

1. You choose a few young and evolving blogs that you love and believe in to receive the Liebster Award (which is simply like a stamp of approval from one blog to another)

2. You write a blog post stating that you are nominating them and asking them to answer 10 questions of your choosing (this is that post!)

3. They write a post on their own blog answering the questions and nominating more blogs for the award

I’m passionate about blogs and one of my very favourite things is finding new ones to read… so here goes with my answers to Kathryn’s questions:

1. Why did you decide to start your blog?

I’ve been blogging for just over eight years and I started my very first one to record my life at university, accompanied by two tiny rubber ducks called Freddie and Frankie. It’s a way of keeping track of some of my life – a journal and guidebook all rolled into one!

2. What’s your favourite season and why?

Spring! I love the feeling of newness as we emerge from winter, lush greens all around and the bracing fresh air, with sunshine and a promise of summer to come.

3. What is the last great book you read?

I am in the middle of re-reading for the umpteenth time, Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series. I’m on book eight of fourteen and as always, I’m so hooked that the stories and characters are weaving themselves into my dreams. I’m a complete WoT addict, so much so that my 18th birthday present from my parents was a gold ring I’d designed, taking strong inspiration from the series.

4. What 3 things would you take to a desert island?

This is such a tough question! First up, Larry the lamb – I’ve had him since birth and he’d be a great comfort if I was alone on said island. Secondly, a boxed set series of the aforementioned Wheel of Time – they would at least keep me occupied. Thirdly, a never-ending notebook and a pen with everlasting ink (you didn’t say I had to stay realistic!) so I could get my jumble of thoughts and experiences down onto paper.

5. Name 3 people that have inspired you

You don’t make these questions easy, do you Kathryn?! Ok so firstly my parents, for living all over the world before that was a normal thing to do, for starting a business at nearly 60 and for learning and changing with the times and not being set in their ways like so many of their generation. They’ve set me a brilliant example.

Next up, one of my best friends, the genius behind Contrariety Rose – for having the guts to quit her day job and focus on developing her own indie fashion label. She has the most determination and focus of anyone I’ve ever met and I admire her for it every day.

And lastly (though by no means least, and by no means the only other person I admire – this list could go on for aeons), a newer but no less treasured friend, Rachael, who was brave enough to listen to her instincts, move to the other side of the country and start a whole new life over there. I’m proud and in awe all at once!

6. How do you relax?

By reading, which has been my chosen method of chilling out all my life, I can quite literally disappear into another world between the pages. Also hopefully in the new year, by playing with my adopted kittens!

7. What do you like most about writing a blog?

The freedom to say what I want, and to develop who I am and where I want to go next. The community that springs up around blogging never fails to amaze me, too – I’ve met some fabulous likeminded people over the years.

8. Where’s your favourite place to write?

In my studio at the back of my house, overlooking the first garden I’ve ever been able to call my own.

9. Are you a night owl or morning lark?

Night owl, definitely – one of the things I find hardest about my day job, though I love what I do for the most part, is having to be in at 9am. I much prefer to work late – as my unscheduled blog posts will show!

10. What is your most memorable trip?

Another tough one as all my trips have been breathtaking for one reason or another, but I think the one that takes the top spot, just, is the banger rally to Romania I did in a car called Rusty McLusty in 2011. It helped me face some fears, brought me fantastic new friends during and after the trip, opened my eyes to a whole new way to travel and cemented a changed view of my world. And probably improved my driving no end, too!

When I got home, I felt like I could take on the world. Without it, I’m not sure I’d have been brave enough to have made the massive changes I have and been as happy as I am today.

Oh, and as I was one of a very few girls (women!) on the trip, I’m no longer terrified of talking to men, which is handy. Though I still flatly refuse to speed date… lol!

My nominated blogs for this are Louise at Craftyguider, Mimi at Little Sips of Tea, Annastasia at Midorigreen, Shobha at NYLon Living , Keri and Emma at Ladies What… and Catherine at Everybody’s Home for Dinner…

My questions:

1. What’s the first thing you do when you open your eyes in the morning?

2. What’s your best ever bargain?

3. What’s always found on your bedside table?

4. Three things that inspire you?

5. Your favourite place to go to get away from it all?

6. Motto for life or words to live by?

7. What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

8. What’s your favourite word?

9. The book you’re currently reading (or the next or the last, depending how much of an avid reader you are)

10. When are you happiest?

Can’t wait to read all your answers – and Kathryn, thank you, I had some lovely flashes of memories writing my answers!

Wishing you unicorns and happiness,

Carla xx

[reading] away with the fairies
On the hunt for unicorns