Sunshine Blogger Award

sunshine-blogger-award

Glen, over on his delightful blog, justabitfurther, totally took me by surprise. He nominated me for the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am honored.

I love Glen’s blog where he and Lynn and their dog Katie are all about the journey, especially where the wonderful outdoors is concerned. Awesome photos and Glen’s thoughtful words take me on hikes, canoe or kayak outings, and other adventures, both transporting and inspiring me to more of my own adventures in this wonderful world of ours. Please stop in at justabitfurther and have a look-see!

I am grateful to Glen for his wonderful blog, and for nominating me for the Sunshine Blogger Award.

I am especially happy for this nomination because it makes me feel even more a real part of the blogging community. The award is given by bloggers to other bloggers who inspire creativity and positivity in that community. It is all about connection, helping bloggers and readers to discover new blogs or new-to-them blogs. Of course, that means sharing some of those blogs that you love.

The rules for the Sunshine Blogger Award include:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Now, as for those pesky questions presented by Glen, I admit I find this just a tad intimidating. Deep breath, here we go:

  1.  Why did you get into or what motivated you to start blogging?  It’s a mysterious thing, isn’t it? I am a writer. It’s hard not to write. Writing for others to read keeps me awake/mindful, observant, in practice. And it’s fun. Well, mostly.
  2.  What’s your favourite comfort food? Probably a slice of whole wheat bread with peanut butter and dill pickle slices.
  3.  Is there a quote or saying you don’t like? Hmm. One phrase that comes to mind,  “Give back.” Don’t be upset by that.  It’s just that I believe it is natural for us to want to give. It helps us to be whole. It is not a matter of owing, it is more a matter of being our whole selves. Don’t “give back,” just “give” your own unique, beautiful gifts.
  4.  What would your ideal day be like? I suspect it would involve hiking, perhaps in the mountains, with a trusted other.
  5.  What do you love most about blogging? Inspiration and community.
  6.  What is something that made you smile today? My awesome best friend, who happens to be a cat and who never fails to make me know I am loved.
  7.  What is one piece of advice you give other bloggers? I don’t actually presume to give advice to other bloggers, except, I suppose, go for it! I learn much from other bloggers, and I am grateful for it.
  8.  Favourite flavour of ice cream? Ben & Jerry’s Coffee Caramel Fudge – it’s vegan and it’s awesome. Woohoo!!
  9.  Do your family or friends know about your blog and what do they think of it?Actually, there are only two people of my personal acquaintance who know I blog. They are long-time friends of mine and always supportive!
  10.  What advice would you give to YOUR ten-year-old self? You are amazing, and you are loved. Always know that. Be who you are.
  11.  If you could be any superhero, what power would you have and why? I don’t actually know all that much about superheroes, but flying seems like a pretty cool power to have. Yeah, I would totally fly. I would love to see more of the universe, and to feel the freedom of flight.

Whew, now that I’ve covered that territory, I would like share the names of a few blogs that are special to me, in no particular order. These are just a few of the blogs from which I derive much inspiration, pleasure, and insight. I hope you will pay them a visit:

You Are Love Now:  I love this little burst of love in my life. Not sure how it happens (or maybe I am), but every day, I find a lovely, thoughtful, encouraging poem from Sandy.

Carry Loves Cats: Honest to Pete, every time I read this blog, I wind up smiling and usually laughing out loud. Love the cat connection here, and the wonderful voice in this blog.

Nourishing Amy: Vegans, would-be-vegans, folks just scratching their heads about veganism, check it out! Particularly right now, when she’s mindfully writing very supportive posts for folks dipping into it for Veganuary.

cat fink KnowTrustChooseCreate: Reading Cat Fink’s blog is like diving into a spectacular confection, complete with rich flavor and icing and visual appeal and hidden nuggets. I relish her language, her inspiration, and the deep heartstrings she touches.

A Miracle Workbook: I am always delighted by the posts I find here. They are great inspiration and encouragement to walk my path, to be compassionate towards myself and others, and more.

Running Truths: I am inspired Every.Single.Time. I read a post here. She helps me stay on my own running game, although she’s way ahead of me on the course.

Blue Mood Café: I’ve mentioned the café before. This blog inspired my 2019 book expedition, on which I am off and running.

Inspirational Poems: Love Trina’s outlook on life, and I also really like how she presents her poems, some backstory, and the creative picture of the poem. Lots of inspiration here.

jenjoycedesign:  I do not even know how to knit, but I love this delicious blog steeped in fibers and the beauty of nature. When this blog pops up in my reader, I just feel a mental “Ah!”

James – Not looking back: Love this guy’s positive outlook on life, his fresh voice, and the things he finds with which to inspire me.

Devon Maid: This is another amazing runner who always inspires me, and shares great insights.

According to the rules, here I propose 11 questions for my nominated bloggers:

  1. What’s your last book read, and your opinion on it in less than 15 words.
  2. What’s your all-time favorite book?
  3. What is a work of art that touched your heart or that you just really like?
  4. Where’s your favorite place to be outdoors? Beach, mountains, forest, meadows, etc.?
  5. What is your favorite outdoor activity?
  6. Has blogging changed you? If so, how?
  7. What’s your favorite thing to do just for fun?
  8. What’s your favorite vegetable?
  9. What has been the biggest adventure of your life so far? The short version. 🙂
  10. Do you have a favorite animal, spirit animal, or animal best friend? If so, please briefly describe.
  11. Name a word that delights you for how it sounds, what it means, or what its etymology is.

Thank you so much, to Glen and all the wonderful bloggers out there that enrich my life every day!

beloved books

veru1_4_19.jpgI read a lot, but in recent years I’ve noticed I don’t read a lot of fiction. Lately, however, I happily stumbled across the Blue Mood Café blog, and it somehow opened my eyes to what I’ve been missing.

As I perused her comments in the Best of 2018 post, something clicked. I decided right then to make reading for enjoyment a bigger part of my 2019 picture.

Happily, her top two 2018 picks were right there on the shelf at the local library:  Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren (the author is actually two people), and Unravelling Oliver by Liz Nugent.

I blasted right through those two books before 2019 even started. The first was probably not exactly my cup of tea, but the second hit the sweet spot.

This was just ridiculously self-indulgent reading, particularly with Unravelling Oliver, a mystery which was pretty much impossible to put down. What fun!

Whew! I felt kind of guilty about suspending time like that, but not enough that it prevented me from dipping into yet another book.

This time, I revisited a book that has long been on my shelves. It’s a very much beloved book that I read with my children. I love children’s literature in general, but The Wind in the Willows is one of the special ones. I wanted to read it again, but somehow never could quite allow myself to indulge. Until now.

I shamelessly plucked it off the shelf, and dove in.

Right off the bat, I was in that dreamy place by the river, steeped in Kenneth Grahame’s delicious language.

How can one not just absolutely love the characters? I want a Rat in my life, desperately.

At any rate, it was an awesome trip down memory lane and, really, into another world.

I love that I have now been able to give myself permission to just read with abandon – wherever my whim takes me. It’s kind of funny to realize the subconscious constraints I placed on myself in this area.

It also made me realize that I put a whole heck of a lot of similar constraints on myself generally. I’m all about what I’ve got to do, what I should do, what I’m not doing, what makes sense for me to do, but not a whole lot of what I just want to do, what I’d really like to do.

That’s actually a pretty big realization with some broad implications. I think there is more to come on this topic.

By the way, Blue Mood also mentions several challenges one can participate in, and I admit I am tempted. If I set a goal to read a certain number of books, it might encourage me to really let myself go wild with this recreational reading. Living on the edge, heh?

How about you? Got any beloved books of your own?