I am so touched and humbled by this!

growning self blogger award

“The Growing Self Blogger Award has been created to acknowledge and celebrate amazing individuals, in the blogging community, who are persevering through life’s challenges not only to GROW as individuals,  but to reach out and help others GROW as well.” ~Roda

I feel truly blessed to have met so many wonderful individuals through this process called blogging! I had no idea this world even existed a year ago. I started blogging to deal with my personal pain and isolation and found a network of strong, funny, talented, artistic and kind human beings! Many of whom were dealing with life’s struggles just like me.

I never would have dreamed that the friends I have made in the blogosphere would help me in my “real world” relationships as well. I have been more open, more willing to try new things and, dare I say it, more trusting. Actually, I am still working on that last one 🙂

Many bloggers have been generous to me and nominated my blog for awards, and all of those are important to me. I admit, I am way behind! Embarrassingly so! I hope to start catching up soon. But one lovely human, one that I will never be able to put on the back burner, has nominated me for the award that she herself has crafted. Which makes it extra special! If you know Roda, then you understand what I am talking about! Her nomination brought tears to my eyes, so I will begin digging out of the backlog with “The Growing Self Blogger Award”

 

How it works:

  • Put the award logo/image on your blog
  • List the rules
  • Thank the individual that nominated you and provide a link to their blog
  • Describe the award and mention the creator: Roda  – Growingself.blog
  • Nominate up to 5 blogs.  Remember, the purpose of this award is to specifically celebrate those individuals that have made a difference in your life or the lives of others.
  • Give at least 1 reason why you nominated each individual.
  • Notify your nominees of the award

Today I would like to nominate:

Sophie from Foodzesty

Monika from Everyday Healthy Recipes

Jay from My Truth is Now

Linda from Mainepaperpusher

Sophie- You are my long lost sister from Greece! No, we don’t look alike, I’m sure, as I have red hair, freckles and burn instantly so no one would ever confuse me for a Greek beauty! But, we connected so quickly and strongly from the instant we started messaging. You are so kind and considerate and inspire me to get into the kitchen and try new recipes. We have our mutual love of Rafa to bind us across time zones and you are the first person I think of when a tennis match pops up on my TV. Thank you my dear friend for all the emails and the beautiful post card from Greece!

Monka- I have learned so much from you! Your healthy recipes help me stay on track and fuel my, sometimes, insane workout schedule. I have found new ingredients and tried new techniques which have helped me grow my culinary repertoire. Thank you for putting up with all my questions! One day I will figure out how to get to your cooking site to share those recipes. You are so sweet to take the time to research my queries and help me navigate the blogosphere!

Jay- You are such a sweet man! You inspire me to read more than my usual “goto genres”. I am a creature of habit and will easily fall back on my usual authors. You have made me a better analyst, helping me look beyond the obvious and uncover the many underlying possibilities. I am honored to be a witness to your literary ascent! Please know that I am truly privileged to be a small part of helping you on your way 🙂

Linda-I know, I know, you don’t do awards. I also know that you break the rules when you feel strongly about something. Guess what? Your friendship is so important to me that I am breaking your rule! I am not nominating you to be irritating, but because I feel so strongly about the impact you have made on my life that I am going to talk about you whether you like it or not! So there! We have much in common, and I know if we lived on the same coast we would be fast friends. You inspire me to keep putting myself out there, we both know how easy it is it become isolated. Those of us who are a little too comfortable with alone time can become overlooked, as it were. And, we have the same sense of humor! Your Guest in Jest series is one of my favorite weekly posts! I would give just about anything to spend an afternoon with you drinking coffee, eating cookies and laughing our asses off. Thank you, my friend 🙂

And Roda….The only reason you are not nominated is because you nominated me! I will find you in Colorado, or Seattle, one day. And, hug the stuffing out you 🙂

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One Lovely Blog Award!

lovely-blog

The lovely and talented Sophie from “Foodzesty” kindly nominated me for this award. This is the first time I have been nominated for this one, so thank you Sophie! If you have not made it to her blog yet then you are in for a treat! Sophie is a wonderful cook and has shared a number of delicious recipes-go now and plan your dinner!

Here are the rules for accepting this award:

  1. Each nominee must thank the person who nominated them and link their blog in their post.
  2. They must include the rules and add the blog award badge as an image.
  3. Must add 7 facts about themselves.
  4. Nominate 15 people to do the award

 

Hmmm, 7 facts about me…

  1. I am the mother of two young adults, and am very proud of them!

img_3535

2. You can see from this picture that we like to rock climb as a family

3. I turned 50 last February and got a tattoo to mark the occasion. This is my one and only!

fh2

4 & 5. My husband and I like to run half marathons and travel as much as possible.

scotland run

6. I have a Ph.D. in molecular biology and taught at the college level for 25+ years.

me and alex

my daughter and I at my graduation from USC

7. A few years ago, I went to culinary school because I enjoy baking and cooking and needed to get better at both!

 

Now for my nominees! Please do not feel pressure to respond to this award, my intention is to recognize how much I appreciate your blog and your talents!

Recipes by chefkreso

The Austrian Dish

ONCE UPON A HOT FLASH

juliecares

Marcia Strykowski

Arbie Krae

Simply Seppos

Everyone Else has the best titles

Rhapsody Boheme

Growing self blog

Food to glow

abbeyco

indianeskitchen

wakinguponthewrongsideof50

thisismytruthnow

 

Thank you all for your friendship, advice and your positivity 🙂

 

An Award I Have Never Heard of Before!

black cat award

The beautiful and positive Roda sent me a message the other day. She said “I have nominated you for the Black Cat Blue Sea Award!” I thought, is she pulling my leg? It sounded kind of like a joke-but it’s not. What I found out is that the intent behind this award is to recognize those bloggers who attempt to write for everybody, regardless of the number of viewers they acquire. It is designed to acknowledge writing from one’s passions and not really targeting a blog that necessarily has a large following or a tremendous amount of “likes”. The official statement is:

What Is This Award

This award is for bloggers who strive to write for everybody, and no matter how many viewers they get, make an impact on a reader. This award is an expression of gratitude to the nominee. It should be awarded to anybody that you choose deserves it, and it doesn’t mean that they must have hundreds of followers and likes.

As Roda put it “This award is an expression of gratitude to the nominee and it should be awarded to anybody that you choose deserves it.”

How kind is that! We all enjoy followers and “likes” of course, but I think we sometimes get caught up in that loop and forget that we started this for ourselves and our passions. I love the ideal behind this award and am honored that Roda thought of me!

Rules

  • anybody nominated can nominate up to eight other bloggers
  • the nominee answers three questions posed by the nominator
  • the questions you ask while nominating can be any three questions

Roda’s Questions to me:

  • What would you like bloggers to do more of that they aren’t doing right now?

This is tough for me to address because I follow a number of really diverse blogs. Cooking, rock climbing, running, story writing, photography-all are approached differently and I enjoy that diversity in my Reader feed. As long as everyone stays positive and supportive of one another I am happy. I have yet to find a blog that is negative or demeaning in any way (thankfully!). If I did run into that I would not follow, comment or like any part of it!

  • Tell us 4 things about yourself, one of which is not true… and see if we can guess.
  1. I have a Ph.D. in molecular biology
  2. I have a twin sister
  3. I have run 3 half marathons, to date  and
  4. I went to culinary school
  • Describe a perfect day that balances all the things you love.

I rise early and get in a good run then come home and have a scone (or two!) that I made earlier. I head out with my family for a day of rock climbing (of course I never fall because it is my “perfect day”!) We go out for a tasty dinner and a cocktail or two, then I spend the rest of the evening with my husband-not filling in any more details from here on!!

My Questions to you

  1. Where do you look for inspirations for your blog posts?
  2. How has your blog changed / evolved over time? Was the change in line with your expectations?
  3. What would you like to be doing in the future? Are you still blogging?

 

I do realize that not everyone participates in awards and my only intent is to honor and recognize those blogs that I truly enjoy! Please do not feel any pressure to engage with this post and know that I appreciate all that you do!

 

My Nominees:

Ink Owl

In Diane’s Kitchen

This is My Truth Now

Running Forward, My way

Normalisoverated2016

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Sunshine Blogger Awards #1 & #2

sunshine

Hello Everyone! I have been missing for awhile and I am so behind on my postings!! We have been really busy with our new home purchase in Tucson. It turns out that it takes a lot of time to set up a transaction like this when you are not in the same state as the new house. We have finally finished inspections and negotiations and are feeling better about our position with all this. It will close in August, then we really have to move into gear! Meanwhile, this amazing blogging community has been generous with me once again! The incredible Valerie from “Living Lighter in Atlanta” nominated me for the Sunshine Blogger Award, back in April! Then in June, the Avid Observer from “What Living taught me” also nominated me. I truly appreciate both of these blogs as they have entertained and enlightened my world!

The Rules for accepting this Award:

1.) Thank the person who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
2.) Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you.
3.) Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
4.) List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.

 

Valerie’s Questions to me:

What are three activities that bring you happiness?

-running, rock climbing and cooking!

When you are feeling down, what kinds of things do you do to try and lift your spirits?

-run, rock climb and cook!
What are some of your favorite funny movies (comedies)?

-Blazing Saddles, Caddy shack, Spaceballs and the Vacation movies
Who is your favorite comedian, and what do you like about him/her?

-Anyone on SNL past or present
Does money buy happiness?

-NO, but it does make unhappiness easier to live with!
Were your parents happy when you were growing up? Why do you think they were/were not?

-They thought they were. I believe they were not because they married too young to know what they really wanted. They divorced when I was 23.
What makes you laugh out loud?

-I am a strong believer in the statement “it’s funny because it’s true”. Check out this link: I laughed until I cried!
Does the weather affect your mood?

-Yes! That is why we are snow birding now!
What in your life are you currently looking forward to?

-Setting up our new home in Tucson!

What living taught me Q’s for me:

 A quote or any saying that you love and follow.

ego

  • If you get chance : either to go in future and know what’s there for you or to go back in past and change something Which one would you choose & Why?

-I would go back into the past and (attempt) to prevent a decision, made by someone else, that caused me great emotional pain.

  • A superpower that you think everyone should have.

-The ability to see one week into the future, so that people can better choose their words and actions today.

  • Mountains or Beaches?

-both! I can’t choose!

  • Is there anything that can/might make you stop blogging?

-If this community became negative or unsupportive. That seems very unlikely as everyone I have met has been amazing!

  • If you get a chance to watch any war that happened in the past live Which war would you choose n Why?

-The civil war because I know which side I would be fighting for!

  • Share any adventurous or risky thing that you ever did.

-I did skydiving a few times, three to be exact.  I would love to do it again!

  • What gives you goosebumps every-time?

-fingernails on a chalkboard. It is happening now as I type this!

  • A gift that you would love to receive anytime.

-flowers

  • Your favorite topics to have a conversation on.

-My kids!

  • One thing that you want to eliminate from your life completely.

-weeding!

 

I would like to nominate:

Free to Express

Everyone else has the best titles

Maggie

Atoms of thought

Roda

kool kosher kitchen

In Diane’s Kitchen

The Ink Owl

Wish to Dish

Sensible nonsense

LEE Bakers

My Questions to the nominees:

What is your favorite day of the week?

What was your favorite childhood toy?

Are you a cat or a dog person?

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? Are you doing that now?

At dessert time, do you go for chocolate or lemon?

What is your favorite topic to blog about?

Why did you start your blog?

What book are you currently reading?

What past TV show would you like to see back on the air?

If you could go back into your past, what (if anything) would you like to change?

What would you have for your final meal?

Blogger Recognition Award, #2!

blogger-award

 

I am still working my way through some awards and nominations that I have been blessed to receive. The amazing Kathy Knull was kind enough to think of me when she was writing her acceptance post. Kathy is a novelist, accomplished equestrian and has a wide variety of hobbies and skills I could never master in two lifetimes! I really enjoy reading her posts and can relate as we are in a similar stage of life. Check her out!

Here are the rules for accepting this award

 

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Write a post to show your award.
  • Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  • Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  • Select 10-15 other bloggers you want to give this award to.

 

The first time I was nominated for this award, I was only 2 months into blogging. I don’t think that initial post was widely seen so I am reblogging portions today.

 

How my blog started:

I started my blog as a way to take back some control in my life. After my kids went to college (and yes, if you haven’t experienced it yet, the “empty nest syndrome” is real!) I found myself floundering. I was disillusioned with my career, my purpose had grown up and my husband, well, he was dealing with his own mid life crisis (also a very real thing!). I needed to reconnect with my life, the world and myself. Once I realized that I had basically disappeared I wanted to get back some of the fire that I once had. After all, I had managed to get both a bachelors and a doctorate degree, raise two amazing young people and teach some pretty hard subjects at the college level for 20+ years, but where did that woman go? Starting this blog was one of several steps I have taken to connect to others in my situation. In the process, I have met far more people, of varying backgrounds and ages and am thrilled to be able to hear their stories and share ideas with them. I had no idea how much these connections would mean to me and I am only 7 months into this journey! Thank you for your support and comments, I hope to meet more great people in this blogosphere!

Advice to new bloggers:

I feel a bit disingenuous offering advice, as most of you are probably more seasoned bloggers than myself! But here goes! A piece of advice I received was, “don’t compare your start with someone else’s middle”. I think this is a wonderful sentiment and can be applied to anything you are starting. Be it exercise, a diet or a new job. Someone will always have more experience, talent or, in this world, followers! We all have to start at the beginning of everything! If you are passionate about it then learn from those folks and embrace your beginning. You don’t get to have 5 years of experience on the first day of anything!

The second piece of advice is more from an observation. The blogs I see that are doing well and, have a genuine feel of authenticity, seem to be those written by people who are not looking to make a fortune. Money may come down the line but you will never have more of an opportunity to connect on a personal level than you do right now. If you get rich later, that’s great but if it’s your passion then enjoy it now!

I nominate the following bloggers for this award:

 

Please tag me back if you choose to write a post!

 

The Blue Sky Tag

BeaFreitas has nominated me for the Blue Sky Tag! If you, somehow, don’t know about her blog then you need to click on over right now and check it out! She is a fashionista, quote guru and all around marvelous human being!

Rules for the award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Answer the 11 questions
  • Tag 11 people
  • Give nominees 11 questions to answer.
  • Acknowledge Waves of Awesomeness in your post who created the art.

 

Bea’s questions for me:

  1. If you could only eat 3 foods for the rest of your life, what would they be?

This one is easy, coffee, chocolate and cheese!

2. What is your favorite time of day?

First thing in the morning (with that cup of coffee from question #1!)

3. What are your pet peeves?

Oh so many! But the worst is people who lie.

4. Who is the kindest person you know?

My mother in law!

5. What is the worst thing you did as a kid?

My sister was 5 years younger than myself and always wanted to be around me, or play with me. I was not very patient with her, so not a nice big sister!

6. What do you enjoy to do?

Exercise: running, rock climbing and the occasional yoga class.

7. What is your favorite quote?

ooh, tough one! There are so many! This past year I have been thinking and reading a lot about character, morality and integrity and how the personal choices we make effect those we are supposed to care about. So, today my favorite quote is:

karma quote

8. If you could choose your own nickname, what would it be?

Your Highness!

9. What is your favorite childhood book?

This is really old but my favorite book when I was 5 years old was Mr. Popper’s Penguins.

10. If you could time travel, where would you go?

I would like to see into the future, maybe 100 years from now. I definitely would not go back in time to before the discovery of antibiotics! Too dangerous!

11. What is your favorite scent?

Vanilla!

My Questions to you:

  1. What is your favorite color, and why?
  2. What was you favorite childhood TV show?
  3. Who is your celebrity crush?
  4. If you had the opportunity to travel into space would you take it?
  5. What was the best pet you ever had, past or present?
  6. If you could go back in time, which of your past mistakes would you fix?
  7. You can only eat breakfast, lunch or dinner for the rest of your life-what do you pick?
  8. What is your dream job?
  9. What one world problem would you solve if you had that power?
  10. Would you rather go skiing or snorkeling ?
  11. When was the last time you laughed so hard that you peed a little bit?

 

Nominations

Mystery Blogger Award

The creater of the Mystery Blogger Award is Enigma, here is her page.

mystery-blogger-award

I am so honored, once again to be recognized by BeaFrietas, for an award. She recently posted a list of great gift ideas for guys, which I really appreciated! Do be sure to click on over and get some great ideas!

AWARD RULES

  1. Display the award logo on your blog.
  2. List the Rules.
  3. Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  4. Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well.
  5. Tell your readers three things about yourself.
  6. Answer five questions from the nominee.
  7. Nominate anywhere from ten to twenty bloggers.
  8. Notify the bloggers by leaving a comment on their blog.
  9. Ask your nominees any five questions of your choice, including one weird or funny question.
  10. Share the link to your best post.

Three things about me:

  1. I have a BS in general biology and  a Ph.D. in molecular biology, so I love science especially all things DNA
  2. I ran my first half marathon and began rock climbing last year at the age of 49, and have plans to keep going farther, faster and higher!
  3. I am still on my quest of “what’s next in life” and would love to define that path soon!

My answers to BeaFrietas’ questions

  1. If you were a squirrel for a day, what would you do
  2. What is your funniest memory?
  3. What music artist could you listen to forever?
  4. What is your favorite thing about blogging?
  5. What is your least favorite household chore?

 

  1. I would spend the day raiding those anti-squirrel feeders. It looks like a blast to be spun around like that!
  2. All my funniest memories revolve around my son when he was little. He wore a batman cape for about 3 years and said and did the most hilarious things! Little ones are exhausting to be sure, but they are also a tremendous source of joy and those are memories our family still enjoys reliving.
  3. 80’s rock (see my answer to #2 in “three things about me above” to remember why 80’s rock is appropriate for me)
  4. My favorite thing about blogging is this community! I have met so many interesting people and really enjoy interacting with all of you!
  5. Our house is 11 years old now, the perfect time for things to start breaking down. I have replaced sink faucets and currently have 1 toilet that keeps running and a dripping shower head. Instead of fixing the plumbing I am blogging-so plumbing issues are my least favorite!

My best post

I guess I will go with the one that had the most likes. It was a post that was run on the psychology website, MakeItUlta. 6 remedies for a midlife crisis

My Nominees:

 

My Questions for the nominees:

  1. What is your favorite topic to blog about?
  2. Which foreign language would you like to speak fluently?
  3. If you had to pick, which leg of a triathlon would you prefer? (bike, swim or run)
  4. Do you have a tattoo? Why did you pick that image?
  5. What is your favorite TV show, past or present?