Monday, March 28, 2016

Liebster Award! (Dear Auto-correct, This is NOT the Lobster Award!)

Round pink and red image with a red and pink heart
in the center surrounded by the text

First things first, a super-huge, happy, heartfelt, "THANK YOU!" to Holly at Blindmotherhood for nominating Chronicles for the Liebster Award!  This post has been delayed because we were on a most epic family adventure in California (more on that later!).  The Liebster Award is a great way to get to know relatively new bloggers, what drives them, why they write, and to learn about other blogs they love or may recommend!
Image of small signs that say "Lobster Award" in black text on a white
background with a red heart next to them.  One large red heart sits
atop the small papers and reads, "to inspire and to be inspired"

Here we go!  Below are the questions Holly posed to me, with my answers!

1.  How do you want others to describe you and/or your blog?

Chronicles of a Crafty Blind Chick is a bit of a hodgepodge and I'm ok with that!  When I began writing, I wanted to share my day to day as a blind mom, who also loves crafting, organization, cleaning, and home management.  I also have a passion for sharing my experiences as a blind person with others, educating and raising awareness regarding blindness, disability, ability, and working in partnership with a guide dog.  Still, what I hope most for my blog, and my writing, is that those who read it will hear my voice and will know that the things I write are genuine.  I hope that those I reach who are blind can find connection and common experience, and that those parents of blind children who I connect with may see that blindness is just one part of their child's experience and that with the proper skills and techniques, their child will find his/her passions and will have a future filled with greatness!  Perhaps the most universal things I write about are crafts, cleaning, organization, and household management, as all of us have to deal with those things day in and day out, but I'm hopeful my readers find a bit of humor and easygoing nature behind these topics.  

2.  What’s your most favorite aspect about your blog?

I love that my blog can be more than one thing, that writing can touch people in a very personal, intimate way, and yet it can be very functional and purposeful.  I love that my words, at times, bring laughter or tears, and that my experiences resonate with others.  Most of all, I love that through sharing experiences, feelings, fears, concerns, and thoughts, that we can connect with one another!  My absolute favorite thing is when a reader comments on a post and we are able to talk further--I'm just one girl behind a laptop sharing my life as a blind mom, professional, friend, daughter, and so on--I love when I can connect with others!

3.  What’s the issue that you write about that is closest to your heart?

Ability and Empowerment.  Though I did not intend for my blog to be entirely focused on blindness/vision impairment, it is true that being a blind chick that comes into my experience often, and thus is often a topic on my blog.  I wish I could reach every adult in a similar situation to mine and say "YOU CAN DO IT!" or every parent of a blind child and say, "THEY CAN DO IT!".  We all find our way, but sometimes it takes a long, arduous journey to get there.  

4.  Who do you most admire in the blogging world?

This one's easy for me!  I have long read and admired Glennon Doyle Melton of Monastery.  I strive to be as transparent, genuine, and loving in my writing as she is.  Her words and experiences have inspired me for years, long before I began writing, and I will have the opportunity to hear her speak and meet her in June--an experience I am seriously bubbling with excitement for!

The other blogger I have followed for years and admire a great deal is Jennifer Jones of iheartorganizing.  I can easily say I love organization and cleaning, but this girl, she is THE queen of organization and cleaning!  I have never met her, but I have long admired her work, and her "real" voice as she shares projects and processes as she and her husband make their home what their family needs at each stage and phase of life.  

Finally, I love, love, LOVE Melissa Maker at Clean My Space.  Clean My Space does both youtube videos and maintains a blog with more extensive information, but my favorite thing about both is that you can see Melissa's personality and she and her husband's "real" life through their writing and videos.  They share the best cleaning tips and techniques, answer Q&As, and share product reviews, all with thorough research, humor, and with their silliness interjected.  I also appreciate the professional appearance and quality of their work.

5.  If you could be published anywhere, what’s your dream spot?

I can't say I've thought about this...  and I honestly don't know the answer.  When I see that someone has shared my writing, or something I've done, that tells me that they connected with it, something about it resonated with them and their experience, and that is truly the most powerful thing about blogging to me:  connection and sharing!  

I have thought about the possibility of writing a children's book with albinism, empowerment, and ability at the core of its story, but I know very little about the professional world of writing and publishing.

6.  What is one strength about your writing?

One strength of my writing is its conversational nature and my transparency as I share things.  I think readers can connect best when they are able to get to know the author, when the author becomes a real person rather than some bot on the other end of a computer screen.  We all experience adversity, challenges, failures, and successes along this journey--we grow stronger by sharing and connecting through them.

7.  What is one weakness about your writing?

Consistency!  I struggle to write as often and as regularly as I feel I "should", and yet, I am not one to write just because I should be writing a set amount of times per week.  If I don't have genuine, thoughtful content, I would rather wait to post until I do.  

8.  How many hours a week do you spend blogging?

At this point, probably a few hours a week.  As I began writing, I really didn't know if my topics and content would resonate with others.  As I continue connecting with readers and this blog grows, my content and efforts will grow as well.  

9.  If you could choose another creative outlet, other than blogging, what would it be?

My husband calls me a Blind Martha Stewart LOL.  So, I guess the blog content keeps with one of my other creative outlets, crafting.  I enjoy doing artsy projects with my daughters, making decorations for our home and as gifts.  I've always loved the arts--singing, painting, and drawing, so you could say the arts are strong with this one.  

10.  Have you ever traveled in relation to your blog?  If yes, where?

Not at this point, though I am completely open to traveling and/or speaking in relation to the blog and/or the topics I work to advocate and share.

11.  Why should people read “your blog”  when there are so many out there?

I strive to share my experiences, thoughts, and feelings in such a way that they are relatable and genuine without being preachy.  Readers enjoy the connection and shared experiences that resonate with them, especially around topics of blindness, disability, guide dogs, Braille, alternative techniques, and so on.  It's a unique perspective to share, that of a blind mom and professional, perhaps giving insight into an experience that not many see but many wonder about.  I'm totally open to the "How do you..." questions, and am honored to be able to share one voice and experience in relation to those topics.  
Image of a red heart with "LIEBSTER AWARD" printed in white
Now, for the part I was most looking forward to--the opportunity to nominate, encourage, and learn about some of MY "favorite" new or smaller blogs!

Georgie's Vision:  Georgie's Vision Blog documents the incredible team and great adventures of Becky Andrews and her guide dog, Georgie.  Becky is a small business owner, Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor, Motivational Speaker, wife, mom, runner, cyclist, and lover of travel and adventure!  Basically, Becky is a rock star and I am daily inspired by her writing, dedication to empowering and helping others, and her love and commitment to her family and friends!

ProjectBrailler Blog:  While I am in the U.S., and Kristy Hooper, founder of Project Brailler, is in the U.K., I believe that level of access to literacy and communication, education, and awareness she and her team at Project Brailler work toward should be adopted worldwide!  Her passion and determination are evident in each post and her efforts to ensure blind and visually impaired children in the U.K. have access to Smart Broilers and, consequently, to literacy!  

This Mom is Top Percentage:  Samantha Ross at This Mom is Top Percentage has very recently begun blogging.  I have been following since she began and I'm excited to see her finding her voice and sharing her experiences!  

Blind Mama:  I love that Megan shares openly her philosophy that blindness is not a liability, it's a lifestyle.  She shares the rich experiences, humorous anecdotes, and bizarre happenings of being a blind mama!  I love her honesty and her sense of humor as she experiences life!

Thanks for taking a peek at Chronicles of a Crafty Blind Chick!  Huge thanks again to Holly at BlindMotherhood!  Now, I'm off to send Liebster (NOT Lobster) Award nominations to the above listed bloggers! 

Watch for posts in the next couple of days from our totally awesome family adventure in California of epic proportions!  I'll share some Blind Chick travel tips as well!

Until Next Time,

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