‘Tis the Season to Receive … Awards!

I have been rather remiss of late. I’ve been honored a few times recently with awards, but I’ve been slow to respond to the award givers.  Time flies.  Seems like just yesterday, I was posing for this picture …


But just last week, I posed for this one … (more…)

More Awards, More Mea Culpa

I have been remiss of late in thanking two special bloggers for awards they’ve bestowed on me:  Fall ‘N Love Crafts, who has honored me with my second Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award, and Dean at Deanz Doodlez, who has nominated me for the Liebster Award.  Please visit (and follow) both of these very talented young artists.  And again, my deepest thanks to both of them for these honors.

The rules for the Sisterhood award are simple:

  1. Post the logo on your blog.
  2. Thank the person who nominated you.
  3. Choose 10-12 other ladies who blog as your nominees.
  4. Post the links to the nominees’ blogs and notify them on their blog.

OK, here’s the logo:


I’ve thanked Fall ‘N Love Crafts (see above).

And now for my nominees:

And this last nominee is a bit of a deviation from the rules.  (I didn’t fully follow the rules last time either 🙂 )

I’m nominating Ben for this award because I don’t think there’s enough bitterness in his life and being nominated for a “sisterhood” award might just do the trick.

Now, for the Liebster Award!


I’m gonna cheat on this one.  Surprise!  If you want to know what I am supposed to do, then click on Dean’s link and see for yourself 😉  What I am going to do is answer Dean’s questions because I think his questions are quite fun.

a.  Who is the most intelligent person you know?

My husband.  Not braggin’, just sayin’.

b.  What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done for someone?

Hmmm … well, it wasn’t quite like I did this for someone but with someone: I bought a 1966 Dodge van and drove cross-country with a friend, from New York to California, in 1978.  If you knew me and my friend then, you’d know why it was the craziest thing I could do.

c. How did you get your name?

My mom took my two sisters’ middle names and came up with mine.  She’s a very practical woman.

d. Whats the best piece of advice anyone has ever given you?

Go West, young lady!

e. If you had to describe yourself as a flavour, what would it be?

Sweet & Spicy

f. If you had to describe yourself as a car, what would it be?

A 1994 Toyota pickup truck … which of course is what I currently drive.

g. If you had to describe yourself as an animal, what would it be?

A cat, of course!

h. Do you think laughing at someone else’s misfortune is wrong?

Yes, indeed.  I admit to being guilty of this, but I try to reserve my laughter for those whose misfortune can be construed as “poetic justice.”

i. If a loved one was to serenade you, what song would you most like them to sing?

j. Would you ever let your parents pick out a partner for you?

No.  And I didn’t.

k. Have you ever tried spam? (the meat product)

God help me, yes.  It was quite common to eat fried Spam where I grew up.

 *** The End ***

The Community Storyboard’s Featured Post


My (long) short story in response to the Community Storyboard’s September 8 Writing Prompt has been awarded a “Featured Post” badge!  And I am sharing this distinction with my pal and partner in blogging, John W. Howell at Fiction Favorites.  You can read John’s writing prompt response here.

Now all you other writers out there, make a visit to The Community Storyboard, submit a story, a poem, a photo, an essay to that week’s writing prompt, and you too may become a recipient of the CSB Featured Post badge!  There’s a new prompt every Sunday, lasting for the whole week.  Join in the fun!

The Best Sisters a Blogger Could Have

Briana Vedstad has honored me with the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award.  A huge thanks and big hug to Briana and her kindness in nominating me.  You can (and should) visit her original post here and see what other wonderful sister bloggers she nominated 🙂

The rules for this award are simple:

  1. Post the logo on your blog.
  2. Thank the person who nominated you.
  3. Choose 10-12 other ladies who blog as your nominees.
  4. Post the links to the nominees’ blogs and notify them on their blog.

OK, here’s the logo:


I’ve thanked Briana (see above).

And now for my nominees:

And this last nominee is a bit of a deviation from the rules.  (What?  You thought I would actually abide by the rules this time?)

I’m sure Pecora will find some way to pass the honor along to her 😉

It’s Awards Time Again!

Yes, indeed!  I’ve been honored with two awards.  First, Patty at http://petitemagique.wordpress.com/ nominated me for the 5 in 1 Award.

The rules for the 5 in 1 Award:

1. Display the award logos on your blog.




The Sunshine Award

The Sunshine Award

2. Thank and link back to the person who nominated you.

If you don’t already know Patty at http://petitemagique.wordpress.com/, then visit her blog right now.  She is a truly gifted artist, blending song lyrics, her own poetry, and photography/artwork into her blog posts.  Patty is a woman of tremendous feeling and she has experienced too many tragedies in her young life.  Her poetry reflects her struggles … perhaps I should say, “our” struggles, for I believe Patty speaks for many of us who have suffered great loss.  I find her poetry to be always beautiful and often cathartic.  I am always in awe of her creativity.  In spite of all she has gone through, her generosity and love know no bounds. 

3. Nominate as many bloggers as you like.

If you are a follower of my blog, then you will know that I tend to “cheat” at this part.  I hate to say “this blogger will get this award and this blogger will get the other award.”  So at this end of this email, I will list as many bloggers as I can.  I have at least several dozen favorites so I will try to pick those who may not have already received any or some of these awards. 

4. Let your nominees know via a comment on their post.

Will do 😉

Second, I’ve been nominated by three amazing bloggers for the WordPress Family Award!  The rules are the same as above, except that the list of nominees is limited to 10.

1.  Here’s the award 🙂


2.  Let me give a big thanks to:

Running to Her Dreams at http://runningtoherdreams.com/

Running to Her Dreams is about much more than training for a marathon.  She’s also a mother, a dreamer, and a doer.  She finds hearts in nature, takes photos of them and posts them to her blog.  In her own words, she is a “smartassic woman running to her dreams, who follows her heart and occasionally drops the f-bomb.”  Her motto:  “always be true to yourself and think like a boss!”

Gwen Bristol at http://gwenbristol.com/

Gwen is a wonderful blogger, sharing her insights, her writing, and lots of great marketing tips on her blog.  Hers is the kind of blog that you could spend days on, clicking from one informative tab to another, drinking up her knowledge, suggestions, and encouragement.  She is a writer’s writer:  someone who lives and breathes writing and who shares everything she learns.

S.K. Nicholls at http://redclayandroses1.wordpress.com/

S.K. Nicholls is a woman of many talents:  she is an author, poet, lover of history, a Registered Nurse with a 30-year career spanning “everything from ER and CCU, pediatrics, geriatrics, hospice to psychiatry.”  She grew up on a farm but now lives in a big city.  She is a wife, mother, and grandmother.  She most recently published Red Clay and Roses, a fictional account of a true story about life in the deep South during Jim Crow and before Roe vs. Wade.  I reviewed her book here, and highly recommend it.  It is an important work, a story that needed to be told and that needs to be read.

3. & 4.  OK, when it’s awards time, it’s cheatin’ time for me.  I’m combining my nominees and invite them to choose any (or none) of the awards here.

Without further ado, let me just share the love among:

Robynn Gabel’s Common Sense Experience at http://dupler.org/

According to Dave at http://davidpagan.wordpress.com/

Adventures and Misfortunes of Hector the Aimless at http://adventuresandmisfortunesofhectortheaimless.wordpress.com/

Araneus1 at http://araneus1.wordpress.com/

Ben’s Bitter Blog at http://bensbitterblog.wordpress.com/

Englishman in Italy at http://englishmaninitaly.org/

Expat Eye on Latvia at http://expateyeonlatvia.wordpress.com/

Dawn of Thoughts at http://moossama88.wordpress.com/

ericjohnbaker at http://ericjohnbaker.wordpress.com/

Helen Midgley at http://helenmidgley.wordpress.com/

howanxious at http://howanxious.wordpress.com/

Jill Weatherholt at http://jillweatherholt.wordpress.com/

Julie Green at http://juliegreenart.com/

Katie Cross at http://kcrosswriting.com/

What the Hell … at http://kevinbrennanbooks.wordpress.com/

Shannon Raelynn at http://shannonraelynn.com/

Now, stop reading this post and start following these bloggers 🙂

Just Call Me Ms. Popularity

I’ve been honored with TWO awards this week!  I am rather awestruck since never in my life have I felt so popular then when I rebooted my blog 🙂  The first award I received this week is the Shine On award given to me by the truly inspiring Running To Her Dreams blogger.  If you haven’t visited her blog yet, then go now!  You can always find your way back to me later 😉

shine-onAs with all awards, there are a few rules (which I may or may not follow ;))

1. Display the award logo on your blog. ‘Tis done.

2. Link back to the person who nominated you. Yup, did that, too 🙂

3. State 7 things about yourself.  Anything?  OK, here’s to my boring self:

  1. It’s Friday and I’m taking the day off because
  2. My kitchen is being “demolished” because
  3. We’re getting new kitchen cabinets!
  4. Because the old ones were original (32 years and counting) and I tend to be slow to start home improvement projects
  5. I picked out the new cabinets which are white and double-wrapped with polymer to protect from water damage
  6. To my chagrin, the new cabinets are from the Martha Stewart line because
  7. I don’t like Martha Stewart the person, but I know I will love my new cabinets 😉

4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them.
This is always the biggest challenge for me because I haven’t yet figured out a seamless way to copy and paste these links without having multiple windows open 😦  But I’ve got time on my hands today so here goes:

  1. Bastet and Sekhmet
  2. Teri Polen
  3. Readful Things Blog
  4. Busy Mind Thinking
  5. Running Father
  6. Jade Reyner
  7. The D/A Dialogues
  8. Julian Froment’s Blog
  9. The Write Place
  10. Pat Bean’s Blog
  11. Aging Abundantly
  12. Saunved
  13. Green Embers
  14. Year ‘Round Thanksgiving Project
  15. Talking Experience

I will now proceed to the second award, the Liebster Award, bestowed upon me by the ever erudite John W. Howell at http://johnwhowell.com/.  Do not hesitate to visit his blog!  I’ll still be here when you get back 😉

liebster3In accordance with the Liebster rules:

A.  List eleven random facts about yourself

  1. My birthday is tomorrow (for those of you in a different time zone, tomorrow could be yesterday, it could be today or it could still be tomorrow ;))
  2. I will be six years shy of eligibility for Social Security, but something tells me I’ll keep working
  3. I don’t have kids so I have no sense of time passing which means I have no sense of myself aging …
  4. Until I take a look in the mirror and do not immediately recognize myself
  5. Even though my hair is gray, in my mind it’s still dark brown
  6. I think I’m more physically fit than I was in my 20s
  7. But I also have more aches and pains than I did in my 20s
  8. To celebrate the arrival of our new kitchen cabinets, we had a beer before dinner and then wine with dinner
  9. We both woke up the next morning remembering why we shouldn’t do that
  10. I’m looking forward to getting my house back in order after our kitchen is done
  11. I would like someone else to get my house back in order after our kitchen is done

B.  Nominate eleven other bloggers for the Liebster Award (why not … I’m on a roll!)

  1. Running for Her Dreams
  2. Robynn Gabel’s Common Sense Experience
  3. Eric John Baker
  4. Amber Skye Forbes
  5. mybrandofgenius
  6. Jill Weatherholt
  7. The Crossover
  8. 30 Days of Self Discovery
  9. Word Savant
  10. kiralynblue
  11. lindaghill

C.  Notify these bloggers:  In due time, I have to finish this post first …

D.  Ask eleven questions that the bloggers must answer upon accepting the Liebster Award.

  1. What would be your perfect meal (if calories and expense were of no concern)?
  2. What is your favorite footwear?
  3. What is your favorite automobile (if any)?
  4. How do we achieve world peace?
  5. Who or what is your muse?
  6. What is your favorite time of day?
  7. Do you see dead people?  (If yes, explain.  If no, then I am relieved.)
  8. What is your favorite form of exercise?
  9. When is your favorite time to work on your blog?
  10. What is your top pet peeve?
  11. What makes you the most happy?

E.  Answer the eleven questions that you were asked when you were nominated

  1. Do you want to be rich and famous?  Rich but not famous (I don’t want no stinkn’ paparazzi following me around)
  2. If yes why and if no why? I answered Yes and No because why wouldn’t I want to be rich and why would I want to be famous if I could just be rich?
  3. What is the most important day of the week for you? Saturday
  4. What is your favorite dessert?  Ben and Jerry’s Americone ice cream
  5. How long did it take you to feel good about writing?  About 40 years
  6. What is your favorite time of day?  Whenever my cat Luisa has finally fallen asleep
  7. Who do you depend upon? My husband
  8. Has anyone ever let you down?  Of course, but it was usually my fault.
  9. Where on Earth do you think is closest to heaven? Atop Black Point at Mono Lake, California
  10. What was the most valuable advice anyone ever gave you?  Trust your intuition
  11. What is the most indulgent gift you ever received or given?  I don’t know if I would call it an indulgence, but the most $$ gift was when I gave a family member $1,000 to help him go to Costa Rica for experimental treatment of MS.  We can’t say the treatments actually helped, but I’ve never regretted helping him get the chance to try.

I end this post, with both hands patting myself on the back 🙂  Cheers, everyone!

Leaping Liebster!


I’ve been nominated for another Liebster by the lovely Briana Vested at When I Became An Author.  I don’t want to disappoint anyone by following the rules, so I am going to answer Briana’s questions and stop there 😉  At a later date I may come back to this post and nominate a bunch of unruly bloggers, but for the time being, I just want to acknowledge Briana.  She’s a wonderful writer of young adult westerns so do please skip over to her blog and see about purchasing her books 🙂

Briana’s Questions for Her Nominees:
What is your favorite part about winter?  When I lived in the north, it was the snow, especially on moonlit nights.  Now, in the south, my favorite part is that there are fewer and slower mosquitoes.
Where do you see yourself living in 5 years?  Unfortunately, we’ll probably still be where we are now, although plans are to head to the West Coast as soon as I retire 🙂
How many books are in the room you’re in right now?  If you include ebooks, too many to count!
Look in your wallet/purse, is there more money or receipts in there?  That’s good one!  About 50-50 right now!
What was your first paying job?  Worked summers at a cafeteria doing everything from cleaning tables to cashier.
Favorite vegetable:  Sweet corn on the cob
How long have you had your blog?  Started it in November 2007, ran for about 3 years, took a 3-year hiatus and rebooted in Feb 2013.  You do the math.
What is the best dream you’ve ever had?  The one I don’t remember.
What did you have for dinner last night?  Pizza with eggplant, zuchinni and red peppers and two beers (it was Friday night; I’m allowed to drink then).
Are you happy right now?   When working on my blog, I’m always happy.
If you could change one thing about your appearance, what would you change?  I would make the scars on my legs disappear.

What? Another Award?


Patty over at Petite Magique had honored me with The Loyal Reader Award!  I am truly honored by this as I do try to be a loyal reader.  I am following so many wonderful bloggers.  It’s a challenge to keep up, but it’s also fun, educational, heartwarming and uplifting.

The rules are simple.

1. Display the award on your blog. (Done)

2. Thank the person who sent it to you. (Done)

3. Answer a rhetorical question of the authors choosing. (See below)

4. Send on the award to everyone you consider a loyal reader. (Uh oh)

Rhetorical question:

If you were on a deserted island, how would you survive? If there’s a wireless network on the island and an outlet, then me and my iPad would be just fine.  There isn’t?  I’m doomed.

Loyal reader nominations:

[Disclaimer:  I’m cheating.]

If you are reading this post, then you are a loyal reader 🙂  You know who you are (yup, I’m talking to you, Linda; to you, Shareen; to et al.).  You know that some of you are the same bloggers that Patty nominated (yea, RCC!).  Really, truly.  Make a copy of the award image, upload it to your blog and follow the rules.  Even if you think you don’t deserve it, I argue that you deserve it because you are reading this blog post right now!  Duh!

At the risk of getting sappy:  a big hug to each one of you 🙂


The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award

I have been honored with another award!  This one–the Liebster Award–comes from Olivia Stocum of The Claymor and Surcoat blog.  As an Irish friend in Latvia would say, “You like me, you really like me!” The rules of this award are simple (but lengthy):  first, thank the person who honored me (Thank you, Olivia!), list  11 unknown facts about myself, and answer 11 questions. Then choose 11 nominees and give them 11 new questions to answer.  I will endeavor to abide by the rules, although I am known for cheating 🙂

11 Unknown Facts About Me:

  1. My life is an open book (no, wait, you all already knew that)
  2. I love cats (whoops! I think most of you have figured that out too)
  3. I’m married (no surprise there!)
  4. I have two graduate degrees:  one in English and one in Social Work (ok, now we’re getting somewhere)
  5. My hair is not naturally straight (boring)
  6. But it is naturally gray (boring)
  7. My mom is one of 12 (makes for a lot of cousins)
  8. I brake for turtles (and move them out of the road because they take forever to cross)
  9. I once had a pet raccoon named Bartholomew (actually, he belonged to a boyfriend but we both raised him until he mysteriously died)
  10. I drove a ’66 Dodge van cross-country in 1978 (totally out of character)
  11. I like snakes (just not in my house)

Answer 11 Questions:

  1. What’s your favorite vacation destination and why?  San Francisco, CA, because I used to live there.  It’s also where my husband and I met and started our life together.
  2. What’s your favorite book? Book as in singular?  No can do.  I can’t pick just one.  I’ve enjoyed too many and they all speak to me in different ways, from Dickens’ Bleak House to Alice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones to Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake to George Eliot’s Middlemarch.
  3. What do you like on pizza? Veggies with a little pesto sauce to taste
  4. Do you have a favorite song? Again, singular?  Depends on my mood, but I can say that B.B. King is The Man 😉
  5. If you won the lottery, what would you do with the money? Establish trusts for my grandniece and grandnephews; buy a home in the San Francisco Bay Area; and partition the rest to ensure that we can live comfortably for the rest of our lives (yes, I know, that was terribly boring)
  6. What was your favorite pet?  Don’t tell the other cats, but it was Mikey, my orange kitty (RIP)
  7. If you had a time machine, where would you go? I’d stay put.  If I go back in time, I’m afraid I’ll get marked as a witch.  If I go forward, my worst fears might be realized.
  8. Do you wish I would stop asking so many questions? Now that you’ve mentioned it, yes 🙂
  9. If you found a magic lamp and was given three wishes, what would they be?  Love, Happiness and Good Health for everyone
  10. How many cups of coffee do you drink in one day? A 12-ounce mug during the work week, maybe twice that on weekends.  Most times I drink Earl Grey.
  11. Where do you see yourself in ten years? Hopefully back on the West Coast.

Now for the 11 nominees:












11 Questions for the Nominees (if they choose to answer):

  1. Are you a spy?
  2. What has to happen for you to say you had a perfect writing day?
  3. If you won a two-week all-expenses-paid trip to anywhere in the world, where would you go?
  4. What do you enjoy most about blogging?
  5. Do you have a master plan to take over the world?
  6. Who do you think should inherit the earth and why?
  7. If you had the funds to design your perfect writing space, what would it look like?
  8. What is your favorite animal (wild or domesticated)?
  9. Where did you hide the money?
  10. Have you ever been in a witness protection program?
  11. Do you think I’m crazy? (trick question)

It’s Awards Time!

I have to pinch myself. Sometimes I feel like I’m dreaming. I am a shy, sensitive introvert: someone who doesn’t make friends easily, someone who feels more comfortable with furry four-legged critters than people. I’m often inclined to think that people have more reason to not like me, than to like me. That’s just part of who I am. But since I’ve been blogging, I’ve been showered with awards from people I have never met. All I’ve done is commented on and liked your posts, followed your blogs, and tried to give support for your writing and other ventures when I can. And in return I get these awards.

Super-Sweet Award

Super-Sweet Award

Earlier this week, RunningToHerDreams honored me with the Super Sweet Blogger Award, my second one! And she is herself a super sweet and inspiring person, so please visit her blog.

Then Briana Vedsted created a new award and I’m among the first to be honored!


Now for the Rules:
Post a picture of the award somewhere on your blog.
List five things that make you happy.
Choose 5 people to nominate who have been a virtual shoulder to cry on, checked in on you when they knew things were rough, or has always been there for you.
Comment on their blogs to thank them and let them know you nominated you.

Things that make me happy:

1. My husband (OK, he’s not a thing but he’s the first and last and in-between in my happiness)
2. When any of my cats curl up on my lap
3. Giving hand-knitted gifts to friends
3. Writing
4. Reading
5. This community of bloggers

Briana already gave the award to two of my favorite bloggers, so here a few more of my favorites.

My nominees:






Thank you again, Briana and RunningToHerDreams, and a big hug to everyone who has supported me and my writing.

Part-Time Monster

I eat books for breakfast.


Best-selling Author of the Stone Mountain Mystery Series

Lady Of The Cakes

Vignettes from a multi-lingual, multi-cake-eating freelance existence


from the pretty to the gritty


Affordable editorial services for indie writers

William Pearse | pinklightsabre

Writing is learning to see in the dark


Writing Perspectives, Practices, and Proclivities

Books: Publishing, Reading, Writing

And, for good measure, a bit of Cooking and Eating

S.K. Nicholls


Jackie Mallon

Author/Fashion Designer

El Space--The Blog of L. Marie

Thoughts about writing and life

JeriWB Word Bank

Writing & Editing Services. Make every word count.

Britt Skrabanek

content optimist & life enthusiast

Hollis Hildebrand-Mills

Divine Imagery Is Everywhere™

Kate Shrewsday

A thousand thousand stories

dilettante factory

home of Dilettante Publishing and the diverse creative outlet of HK Abell

The Writer Within

Inside the world of author AnnMarie Wyncoll


Relationships reveal our hearts.

Kristina Rienzi

Suspense Author

A View From My Summerhouse

Share the view with me, rain or shine...

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