Friday, 1 August 2014

The Liebster Award

First of all, I have to start off this post by thanking Taylor, from the blog Oatastic Oats, for nominating me and my blog for The Liebster Award. When Taylor nominated me, I was just so happy that another established blogger was even reading my blog, never mind liked it enough to nominate me along with ten others of her favourites for this award. I am here-by accepting the award and all that it entails.

For those of you reading this post who don't know what the Liebster Award is, allow me to briefly enlighten you. The Liebster Award is an award passed around from blogger to blogger which basically shows our appreciation for each other. It's a recognition of all the hard work and dedication we put into all of our recipes and posts. 

There are a few rules which accompany The Liebster Award which you must adhere to, if you wish to accept the award. 
- You must link back to the blog which nominated you
- You must share 11 facts about yourself
- You must answer 11 questions asked by the nominator
- You must then nominate 11 of your favourite bloggers yourself and you must notify these people of your nomination
- You must ask 11 questions yourself, which your nominated bloggers must answer should they accept the award 

Having already linked Taylor's blog (Oatastic Oats) above, and now again, on with the next part of the post; sharing 11 facts about myself. I decided to share a mixture of facts that people may already know about me along with a mixture of facts that people don't already know about me and maybe would have never even guessed. 

1. I am starting a Personal Fitness Training course in September through an organisation called Image Fitness Training. The course is based at Liffey Valley Fitness Centre and when I have finished this course, I will possess several useful qualifications that are all fitness related. 
2. I have a bit of an unhealthy addiction to Instagram at the moment. If you don't already follow me, click here
3. I have a dog called Ariel (named after the Disney Princess) and she is a cross between a Shit Zhu and a Wire Terrior.
4. I adore watching the Food Network channel and the Good Food Channel and have had for years and years now. My favourite Chefs and Cooks to watch are Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fernley Wittingstall. 
5. I have four sisters. 
6. I lived in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia for two years from the age of 16 until the age of 18. 
7. I love horse-riding and before I moved to Australia, I used to own seven horses! I don't own any now, unfortunately. But I love a good trail ride or beach ride whenever I get the opportunity. 
8. I have a really sensitive digestive system. Dairy products, like yoghurt, really upset my tummy and so do other things like refined white carbohydrates and protein powders.  
9. When I was younger, I used to hate tomatoes, eggs and broccoli. I love all of those foods now!
10. My favourite singer of all time is Taylor Swift. But I also love Ellie Goulding, Tinie Tempah, Childish Gambino and Lorde. 
11. I love buying health foods from health food shops and health food stores online. My favourite online (and otherwise) health food shops are; Discount Supplements, Body First Nutrition and Holland And Barrett.  

Now, to answer the questions which Taylor, from Oatasic Oats, asked me.

1. If you had to choose one last meal to eat, what would it be?
This is a really hard one as I have so many favourite foods and favourite meals. But if I had to choose something, I'd probably choose to eat out in a restaurant for my last meal. The restaurant I would choose would have to be The Pancake Manor. The Pancake Manor is a chain restaurant in Australia dedicated solely to pancakes, both sweet and savoury. It's beyond your wildest dreams, plus, they have a gluten free pancake option, which is always a plus.
2. What is your favourite way to exercise?
I have a passion for running! I usually run five days a week, either outdoors, in the gym or on my own treadmill and normally clock up between 3 and 6 kilometres every time. So it definitely has to be my favourite way to exercise. Although, I also love horse-riding and I have recently started a new strength training programme in order to try and build some muscle mass, which I also really enjoy doing. 

3. Are you a cat, dog, or other type of person?
I am definitely a dog person! I have a puppy of my own, called Ariel (yes, after the Disney Princess, The Little Mermaid) and she is a cross between a Shit Zhu and a Wire Terrior. My mam and sisters also own a dog called Aurora (after the Disney Princess, Sleeping Beauty - are you seeing the theme here?) and she is a teacup Maltese crossed with a teacup Bichon Frise. I have also owned several dogs in the past and their names were; Eireann, Ben, Demon, Sandy, Nala, Blacky and Elsie. 

4. What is one place that you would love to go?
I would just love to go to Thailand or Japan. I've never been to an Asian country. But I also have a calling to visit Texas or Tennessee. There's just something about the whole 'country' thing that lures me. Other places I would love to visit some day include; Dubai, Fiji, Amsterdam, Canada, Italy or New Zealand. 

5. What type of cuisine would you really love to try if given the chance?
I've tried a lot of different cuisines already, but never in the actual country of their origin. So, with that in mind, a couple of my favourite cuisines are Thai food and Mexican food. So I guess I would like to try both of them, but in the actual country that they come from, so I could taste the authenticity. 

6. What inspired you to start a blog?
I was inspired to start a blog very soon after realising their existence. I only sort of realised that blogs existed in 2012, after finding Oh She Glows, The Oatmeal Artist and Chocolate Covered Katie. I instantly wanted to get in on the action and start my own blog so that I could share my own recipes with the world. I started two blogs before my current one, which were just for practice, a way to figure out what I really wanted from my blog, like, what type of recipes to share, the design, the layout and all that kind of stuff. 

7. If you could give one tip on food photography, what would it be?
Admittedly, I don't make the photographing part of my blog a priority. It always takes a back seat behind the quality of the recipe, the ingredients and the content of the post. I have been trying to improve my pictures slowly but surely over time, but they still have a long way to go. So I'm not sure if I am even in the position to give anybody advice when it comes to taking a photo.

8. Are you adventurous when it comes to food, or would you call yourself more of a play-it-safe kind of person?
I think I'm both. Some weeks, I'll try loads of new and unique recipes and end up back-logged when it comes to posting these recipes on my blog. But other weeks, I don't try any new recipes, and stick to the ol' reliable foods when it comes to a quick meal. I am actually a big convenience food person! Which people find hard to believe. You just have to be educated when it comes to choosing convenience or processed foods to ensure that you make the right choices. It is quite simple to eat healthily and conveniently at the same time, once you have the know how. 

9. What is the weirdest thing you have ever eaten?
I haven't eaten that many weird things really. All I can probably offer to the table is; Kangaroo. When I lived In Australia, I tried it twice. The first time, I actually quite enjoyed it. But the second time, I didn't like it very much at all. 

10. If you had to name a cow, what would you name it? It can be any colour that you want.
I would name it something cliché! I love cliché names when it comes to animals. If it was a Friesian cow, that's the black and white ones bred for milking, I'd probably call it something like Patch. Or Daisy. Daisy is a cute, common name for a cow. 

11. Do you have any fandoms/interests that are not food or fitness related? (Harry Potter, Star Wars, Adventure Time, etc.)
I have a bit of an online shopping addiction. I have had for years now. I buy everything online. Health food, supplements (like protein powders), kitchen utensils and of course, loads and loads of clothes! I am not exaggerating when I say LOADS by the way. I have so much clothes in my wardrobe that  haven't had a chance to wear a lot of them yet. 

With all of that completed, now it's my turn to nominate 11 of my favourite blogs to complete The Liebster Award. 

The Oatmeal Artist
Chocolate Covered Katie
Oh She Glows
Happy Healthy Life
The Little Green Spoon
The Coconut Diaries
Eat Clean Live Strong 
Happy Body
Secret Squirrel Food
Desserts For Breakfast

And finally, my 11 questions which the nominated bloggers have to answer. 

1. What are your all time favourite healthy foods?
2. What foods do you dislike or used to dislike as a child?
3. What is your favourite unhealthy food, which you would have as a treat? 
4. What are your favourite health food or supplement shops including online ones? 
5. What is your favourite restaurant to eat out at?
6. What are your favourite restaurants that offer healthy options, for those of us who watch what we put into our bodies? 
7. What type of exercise/work outs do you do and how often?
8. Do you have an interest in the protein contained within the food we eat and how it can benefit our bodies in terms of growing and becoming stronger (building muscle)? 
9. What is your favourite meal of the day?
10. What is your favourite thing to have for breakfast? 
11. What are your preferred pre and post workout meals or snacks? 

I hope you have enjoyed reading thought my acceptance post of The Liebster Award and I hope I have done the chain justice. Thanks again to Taylor, from Oatastic Oats, for nominating me and I hope that even a couple of the bloggers that I nominated will accept the award and keep the chain going! 

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