liebster-awardI had the honor of being nominated for the Liebster Award by Niki of The Richness of a Simple Life. If you have not checked out her blog, you should! Her writing is clear and true. Her posts are inspiring, thoughtful and honest. And she is now over 500 followers! So head on over to her blog and check what all the excitement is all about!

Thank you Niki for taking me under your wing and giving me guidance as I slowly got my blog up. It is through her meet and greets and interacting with wonderful bloggers, new and experienced, that I have quickly come to understand just how wonderful and supportive the blogging community is.

It took a little longer than I wanted to accept the award because I wanted to be thoughtful about the responses to the questions and also think of fun questions of my own…plus I wanted to select 10 special nominees!

Here are my answers to the 10 questions (5 Blogging/writing related and 5 random) Niki asked me.

1. What did you write before you started blogging? (Journal, short stories, nothing…)

I have always loved writing and creating. I always kept a journal–off and on through my childhood and even up through the birth of my first child. Writing is a great way to express oneself–even if the writing is kept close to one’s heart and just used as an exercise to work through some complicated feelings. I ended up writing a novel which was never published in college after a particularly hard time and I happened to stumble upon it a few weekends ago during spring cleaning. Now I write grants and papers as a pediatric health services researcher. It is important to disseminate my findings to the larger scientific community. I only recently decided to try out blogging as a way to translate and share my findings as well as my tools I developed during the course of my research and those that I use in clinic with families.

2. Who did you first share your blog with?

I announced the launch of my blog to everyone all at once on Facebook so I guess that means I opted to go “Facebook official” on my first day. The idea to start the blog came to me after I shared an ADHD handout I had newly developed on Facebook and I had such overwhelming response to the post. I think about 40 people asked me to send them the handout! I started to think that perhaps a blog was the more efficient and easier way to share these types of tools with everyone and anyone.

3. Who do you hope reads your blog most or who do you hope doesn’t? (Be sure to specify which you answer!;) )

I hope that parents, educators, other pediatricians, family physicians, other healthcare providers and community advocates will follow and read my blog. My wish is that it become a “place” to chat about pediatric health, research and every day topics related to parenting.

4. How long do you typically spend creating a post from start to publish?

It depends. The average is 30 minutes but sometimes longer (like this post which I worked on for a little and then came back to it another day). I find that writing is a process. I get all my thoughts and ideas out quickly when inspiration strikes. I read through and edit before posting. Sometimes ideas need to percolate and sit for a little bit too so I keep a file of ideas that I can go to when I need inspiration.

5. Do you secretly hope for a post to go viral? Why or why not?

I think it would be exciting if it would go “viral” but honestly, I think a more manageable forum where there are more interactions with followers and visitors is more meaningful to me. I love when readers take time to comment and share. It means that there was something that spoke to them or resonated with them.

6. What piece of advice would you give your younger self?

To laugh out loud more. To break the rules from time to time–it’s ok! I am a type A personality. I like structure and routine…guess it is only fitting that I became a behavioral pediatrician! Life is short…if you want to do something…do it!

7. What smell takes you straight back to your childhood?

There are certain Filipino foods that take me back to my childhood. Both my parents are Filipino and I am first-generation Filipino-American. I have learned how to cook some of my favorite dishes, but there are a few that I have not cooked because I want to enjoy particular dishes at the home of my parents when I visit them.  Food evokes strong childhood memories for me–I suppose that is why I love to cook and share food with those I love.

8. If you had to move today, no questions asked to another country, which would it be and why?

This is easy. France. I have always had a love affair with France. I cannot even speak French! However, I have visited twice with my husband and have been in awe of the country, the food, culture, history and people. Maybe one day I will learn French–it will never be perfect but just enough so I can get around…lucky for me my husband minored in French and could hold his own for 30 minute conversations with taxi cab drivers (and let’s face it…everyone!) and got us around during our last trip.

9. If you could live in any time period (other than the present) what would it be and why?

It would be during a time without war and terrorism. A world we can live together, accepting and free of each other. A world without violence and our children are safe. A world without poverty and global warming…I wish to leave this Earth as bountiful as it was for our generation so that my children and future generations could see its beauty.

10. If a movie were to be made about your life, what would it be called and who would play you in the movie?

I suppose the movie would be titled, “My Life: a work in progress”. This is a spin on our weekly work forum called “works in progress” where we present our research at least twice a year to other colleagues to brainstorm and get critiques to strengthen the work we produce. My path to where I am now has not been a straight line. It seemed that a door always opened and each opportunity shaped my path. When I started medical school, I knew I wanted to be  work with kids and become a general pediatrician; I never dreamed my career would be using that skill set to understand child health as a researcher and thinking up new and innovative ways to improve upon healthcare for children and their families. I am grateful to mentors and colleagues who have all left impressions on me at various times in my life and career.  The question folks always ask in interviews are, “Where do you think you will be in 5 or 10 years”…and I feel each year my image of that becomes more clearer, but I am always open to possibilities I may not even know of yet.

Thank you again to Niki for nominating me for this award. What a wonderful honor and surprise.

So, now it is my turn to pay it forward by spreading the joy of discovering new blogs and helping other bloggers. Here are my 10 nominees listed in no particular order. I understand not everyone is into the awards so please do not feel obligated to accept. If you are so inclined, please see the rules of engagement below the nominee section!

  • Emily, who is a pediatric hematologist/oncologist who blogs about professionalism in academic medicine. Her posts infuse humor and pearls of wisdom. Check out her blog at and one of her great posts about “how to manage your boss”
  • Alison, whose blog I recently found because her illustrations are captivating and invite you to look closer. One of her posts, “Catching the Sunrise” was beautifully written and captured personal reflections about her pregnancy. Each post showcases original art.
  • Kim, whose blog, Ramblings of K, she loves travel and posts some awesome photographs of her trip to Etosha.
  • Lauren, is a free spirit and blogs about her travels…I was drawn in by the simplicity and fresh look of her blog and also a post about her latest adventures in the Philippines, where my parents are from!
  • Poems of Life: I love the look and feel of this blog. The poems are touching and well written. If you love poems, check it out! One of my favorites is titled, “Love is”
  • Tadhg, a teenager with Aspergers shares his experiences of what it is like living with Asperger’s, previously part of the larger autism spectrum disorders. His blog, Ask a Teenage Aspie, is well written and thoughtful! Check it out! He just reached 100 followers!
  • Ioana from Romania, posts regularly on her blog, Music Teacher Lifestyle. She posts photography, witty posts. One I enjoyed was about the Happiness Habit.
  • Shana Ross, I have enjoyed all the posts I have read on her blog. She blogs about books and life. She recently posted a book review of a new read I decided I had to get my hands on. Check it out!
  • Kulish, who is 16 years old from India and loves to travel. Find out where he is at The Explorer K. His blog design is really eye catching!
  • The Birds Nest Blog. Really simple, clean blog with beautiful photos of her children and family and reflections of parenthood.

SIX SIMPLE RULES OF THE LIEBSTER AWARD should my nominees accept…

  1. Thank the blog who nominated you and link back to me (Nerissa Bauer at Let’s Talk Kids Health).
  2. Share the award on your blog (use the images saved on my post or search online for any images you wish!)
  3. Answer the 10 questions I asked you
  4. Ask 10 questions to 10 new nominees who have less than 300 followers (if I nominated you and you have more, please don’t be offended, not all follower counters are easy to find)
  5. Notify your nominees

Here are the nominee’s 10 questions to answer

  1. How did you decide to start blogging?

  2. Where do you draw your inspiration for your blog posts?

  3. Do you secretly hope your blog goes viral? Why or why not?

  4. What tip do you have for folks who want to start blogging?

  5. How did you come up with your blog’s name/title?

  6. What is your favorite book and is it from childhood or adulthood?

  7. What is your favorite recipe/meal and why?

  8. If you had to choose a color that represented you, what would it be and why?

  9. Where do you wish to retire and why?

  10. What is your personal mantra?

Niki, thank you once again for nominating me! It is truly a great honor.



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Written by

Nerissa Bauer

I am a behavioral pediatrician, consultant, child advocate and blogger. I am a wife, mommy to 2 amazing children and a golden retriever. Love cooking, travel, reading, tap and creating.