Liebster Award Nomination

aMany thanks to Harley Kallisti, who has honored me by nomination for the 2018 Liebster Award.  Harley’s blog Passion and Chaos is a wonderful mix of her drawings, snippets of fiction that will become a novel she has been working on since grade school, and posts about her real life. She has a gift for story-telling; check out her blog!

The Leibster Award itself is more than an honorific given by one blogger to another. It has an actual prize awarded by The Global Aussie on December 31! You can learn more about it on his site, which is truly global, by the way, as it’s primarily devoted to travel.

Honored as I am to have received this nomination, I’m afraid I’m going to have to decline. I’ve spent hours today trying to answer 11 questions and come up with 10 random facts about myself that I’d be willing to share. These rules and requirements are just too cumbersome and invasive for me. I’m not a “peel the onion layers” type of person. Not to mention having to nominate between 5 and 11 other bloggers. So, thank you for the honor, but no.

Stream of Consciousness Saturday: Bodily Functions

For the better part of today, my brain has been working in the background, mulling over  Stream of Consciousness Saturday’s prompt “bodily function.”  To be honest, I guess I must be sort of prudish, because all I could think of was bodily functions that are usually not discussed in polite company. (Thank you, Emily Post. You probably don’t remember her. She was the original etiquette queen. Waaaay before Miss Manners came along. But I digress.) Despite my prudishness, my biggest laugh today was reading Fandango’s take on the subject on his This, That, & the Other blog. He chose farts. You’re laughing now, too, I bet. Go read it; you’ll laugh even harder.

Anyhooo, part of my mulling was about autonomous bodily functions, those you really have no control over. (That does NOT include farting, because, as everyone knows, you can hold that in, for quite a while with practice. Again, digressing.) I mean something like blinking. Since this is SoC, I think it’d be cheating to leave now and do a little research, but I think the main reason for blinking is to keep your eyeballs hydrated. Every blink spreads a layer of useful tears.

Did you ever have a blinking contest when you were a kid? Or when an adult with a kid? Or when a drunk adult? Like farts, you can control blinking for quite a while (not as long as farts). Sooner or later, however, you lose control and blink. In my experience it’s sooner rather than later. I think it’s partly because my eyes need a LOT of hydrating but also because once I start thinking I can’t do something, if it’s a rule or a law, I can’t stop thinking about doing it. Like telling someone not to think about elephants. (Try THAT.) My will power tends to break down pretty quickly. Plus, it’s just my nature to buck authority.

The blinking game ends when the first person blinks. That person lost the game. Although the game is usually for fun, sometimes the stakes are high. For instance, first person to blink has to run around the block, or load the dishwasher for a week, or become a hostile foreign leader’s lap dog/puppet/patsy.

Photo credit “The Staring Contest” by Anthony Letmon; found on Wikimedia Commons

Quick Fire Round 10 Answers

Jack Be Nimble source: Wikimedia Commons

A Guy Called Bloke periodically posts lists of questions for anyone to answer. Now, I’ve blogged in the past that I don’t like participating in quizzes and questions. However, for some reason, Quick Fire Round 10 appealed to me. So here goes:

What is the one meal you could eat all day every day for the rest of your life if you had to?  Eggs, in any form

If we lived in an all grey world what three colours would you introduce as the first and only colours to our world?  Yellow, blue, green

Have you ever been starstruck?  Have I ever not been?

What is the best present you have ever received?  Transistor radio, Christmas, 10 years old

What film would best describe your life?   Either Gaslight or Pollyanna

What song would best describe your life?  I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For

What is the next book you are thinking of reading?  The Notorious RBG

If you NEVER had to sleep and could sail through each and every day without getting tired, what would you be doing with all that extra time?  Wasting it

What question would you ask of a stranger to get to know them better quickly?  I don’t talk to strangers

Worst holiday you have ever had?  Christmas after deciding to leave husband but before leaving

You have the choice at dying at 100 or living to 200 but still go through the ageing process what would you select and why?  Live to 200 to see what the future holds

How will humans evolve in the next 1000 years – as in what do you think we will look like?  I don’t think we’ll make it another 1000 years

What’s the website you visit most often?  Toss up between YouTube and Facebook

If these were only two choices what would you pick and why: A planet with no fruit or a planet with no vegetables?  A planet with no vegetables, because that’s my least favorite food

In a world that is constantly changing on a daily basis what one thing do you hope will never change?  The ability to laugh

What is your astrological sign and do you think you are close to that personality type?  Libra; I’m very close

It is said that every one of us has a book waiting to be written, what would your book be?  Fantasy involving dragons, magic, and mythological beings

What is something you will NEVER do again?  Get married

Answers please on the transparent side to a droplet of water!



Weight Watchers Watching Me

My weight has been the elephant in the room for many years. Even my primary doctor doesn’t directly address it. He knows I know that, in medical terms, I was morbidly obese at my last physical. He knows I know how to lose weight and how many times I’ve “tried” to lose it. This time, after 4-5 tries at Weight Watchers, I’ve reached and maintained my goal and am now a lifetime member; yet I’m still reluctant to discuss it. Oh, I’m definitely proud of the accomplishment.  Although I complain about having spent so much money on buying several smaller wardrobes on my nearly 90 pound journey, believe me when I tell you I am ecstatic to be able to wear regular “misses” petite size 12 or 14 rather than “woman” petite size 22 or even 24! However, the phrase “4-5 tries” carries a lot of weight (no pun intended).

You see, I’ve backslid so many times, I’m afraid I will again, despite my determination not to let that happen. The WW members’ and leaders’ litany “it’s a lifestyle, not a diet” isn’t really entirely true. It is a diet, because unlike those lucky people who can eat anything without gaining an ounce, I have to continually watch what goes into my mouth. If I eat too much ice cream one day, the next I’ll have to eat salads and/or exercise. If I don’t track everything I eat, my weight creeps up. If I don’t go to meetings, my weight creeps up. Periodically, I have to stop eating ice cream and other sweets, even though it’s “allowed” on WW. That’s what any reasonable person would call a diet. It’s a dieting lifestyle. It’s comparable to being an alcoholic who needs AA to maintain sobriety.

So, one way I’m going to help myself to maintain my weight loss is to remind myself of some things I needed (and still need) to do to stay “on” the WW plan. If it also happens to help anyone else reading this, that’s great.

1. Contemplating reaching a WW goal involving 100+ pounds to lose made my head spin. Then, I discovered how much control I had over the app, so I periodically reset my goal weight in smaller increments (like 5-10 pounds at a time). Those goals were attainable, and I rewarded myself each time I reached one. (It may be verboten, but my rewards included special food items. Hey, it worked for me, as long as I tracked!)

2. Essentially a couch potato, I did the same for the fitness goals, since the WW auto settings were way too high. The app also got me to realize that housework — vacuuming, laundry, changing litter boxes, etc. — counts as activity! That was a relief, since the first time in my life that I set foot in a gym was after I had already lost around 30 pounds. (Note to self: You need to get back to regular exercise.)

2-a. Wearing a fitness tracker really does help to up the exercise quotient. If you wear one all the time, as I do, it’s a constant reminder to get moving. And it doesn’t have to be the popular Fit-Bit or Apple Watch. If a pedometer works better, go for it! Personally, I love my Motiv ring. (uncompensated plug)

3. I didn’t actually have to reach the WW goal, if my doctor wrote a note giving a more attainable weight as a goal. That was a real life-saver for me. I told my doctor that I would probably drop WW before reaching their goal, as usual, for three main reasons: the necessary, but incomprehensible, 100+ pounds I would need to lose, the nearly $50 monthly member cost, and hanging, excess skin (when you’re 60+ with that much weight to lose, your skin just doesn’t have the elasticity to contract that much).

4. The doctor-set goal weight slides me out of the obese category back into merely overweight. Having attained that goal weight, I no longer have to pay for WW meetings or the online tools. The only requirement is to weigh-in once a month and gain no more than 2 pounds over goal. I can still lose weight, if I want to. At some point, though, WW would start charging me again for the online tools; don’t know if they’d also charge for meetings. Also don’t know how much weight I’d have to lose for that to happen. I’ve had several weigh-ins that were 2-3 pounds under goal with no repercussions.

5. I need to both track everything and go to WW meetings at least every other week to avoid gaining weight. Compliments and encouragement from friends and family are gratifying and a nice ego-boost, but only other WW members truly don’t judge when another member plateaus or even gains a few pounds. Because we’ve all done it.

That’s it. Remember, it’s not a diet, it’s a dieting lifestyle.

Random Acts of Kindness Award


Thank you, MwsR, for nominating me for this award, which is given to someone who has shown kindness to another blogger or to the Word Press community. I am surprised and humbled by this honor. Thank you!

The rules are:

1- Tell who you nominate and why.

2= Copy and share the picture that shows the award, posted above.

3- Share  a paragraph of something that impacted your own life in the way of receiving kindness or how you extended kindness to someone else.

4- Nominate anyone or share to your own page. If you so choose to Participate. Tag or pingback to the original person who nominated you, or the original post.

Kindness given to me:

Two years ago, I underwent nearly seven weeks of daily radiation for breast cancer. One of my neighbors, a woman I barely knew, called me every few days to offer help in whatever way I needed. I’m not one to talk about my problems, including health, nor do I ask for or accept help. Nevertheless, she continued to call. I think it was in the fourth week of radiation that the fatigue set in, compounded by lost sleep caused by the pain of radiation burns. One morning, as I was trying to work up the strength for my daily half-hour drive to the cancer center, my neighbor called. I finally broke down and told her about my fatigue, pain, and concern about my ability to continue driving myself to my treatment. She immediately offered to drive me every day, starting on the next day, and enlisted another neighbor to drive me that day. For the next three weeks, this woman I hardly knew gave up two to three hours daily to help me get to and from my appointments. We became good friends and, if she were on WordPress, I would certainly nominate her for this award!


My nominees have been consistently encouraging and helpful to me and to others, both in their comments and in the types of posts they write. they are:

Spoonie the wide-eyed wanderer

Natalie  The Darkest Tunnel

Fritzie Life Travel Soul

Michelle MwsR Writings   (I know it’s unusual to nominate the creator of an award. And I’m absolutely positive she didn’t create it with the idea that someone would give her the award. But, really, don’t you all think she deserves it?)



Are you A Snifty Sleuth?

Can you solve the mystery?

A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip!




The Villa was straight out of the 1920’s and it screamed high class chic louder than a gorilla fighting off a rival. On the English Riviera overlooking the beautiful bay of Torquay and just a stone’s throw away from the birthplace of the great Agatha Christie, this place was a fantastic find.

Of course, everyone enjoyed a good murder mystery weekend but it was frightfully dull when it was just in your Aunt’s front room in her home in the suburbs. When the other guests were just friends and relatives dressed up and the corpse was just a stuffed pair of overalls with red ink splattered on them.

This was supposed to be the real deal. It had better be, because it had cost an absolute fortune. Only those lucky enough to be wealthy or were good at calling in a few favours, could have afforded to stay in…

View original post 434 more words

The Blogger Recognition Award

Blogger recognition award (3) (596x540) (520x471)

Thanks so much to Rory at A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip for nominating me for this award! If you haven’t already seen his blog, do yourself a favor and go visit him. He’s an interesting guy, writing about many different things, and, with the challenges & quizzes he sponsors, he goes above and beyond to create an interesting, diverse community of bloggers.

The Rules:

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
2. Write a post to show your award.
3. Give a brief story of how your blog started.
4. Give (at least) two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
5. Select a bunch of other bloggers for this award; 10 to 15 seems about right.
6. Comment on each blog to let them know you’ve nominated them and a link to the post you created.

How My Blog Started:

Although I created a blog around three years ago, I never actually wrote anything. I toyed with the idea of blogging, but had no idea what I wanted to say or how I wanted to say it. Then, toward the end of this past April, I had some words in my head that were calling to me. Really nagging me. Once I started typing, those words practically poured out, even though I’ve never written poetry! I’ve always hated the writing process but generally loved the result. Not having a specific “assignment” or deadline has permitted me to learn to enjoy the process of writing, too. I still don’t know what I want to say or what genre I want to use to express myself, but that really doesn’t seem too important to me anymore. I write what I feel like, when I feel like it; sometimes prose, sometimes poetry, sometimes even fiction! I write for myself and am completely surprised and thrilled any time someone reads and likes what I’ve written.

My Advice:

Having blogged for less than three months, it seems odd for me to be giving advice, but here it goes.

  1. No matter what anyone tells you, write for yourself. Whether or not you plan to ever earn a living writing, write for yourself first. If you don’t like what you’re writing, chances are no one else will, either.
  2. You’ll start out reading all sorts of blogging advice articles and blogs. You’ll worry about how to pick a topic or start a story. You’ll worry about how to get people to read your blog. How to keep them when they do. You’ll be told to write what you know, write for 10-15 minutes every day, read other blogs, read books…..whew! Who has time for all that? Once you feel like you’ve had it with all the advice, keep what seems helpful for you (if you must) and throw everything else out. JUST WRITE! Don’t worry.  In just doing it, you’ll find what works for you. And have fun with it!


Having recently written about how I don’t like being tagged for chain-questions/quizzes, I feel a bit guilty nominating anyone. So, really, if anyone I nominate doesn’t want to be bothered, then don’t. I understand. Truly, I do. [whispering] Here’s a little secret: no one is going to be checking up to see who of my nominees decide to drop out. So do what feels right for you!

My nominations come from the blogs I read regularly because they’re fun or provocative or heart-wrenching or sweet or grip me in some way. (I’m not nominating some that are in that category when I know someone else has recently nominated them.)


Life Travel Soul

Mws R Writings

The Darkest Tunnel

This, That, and The Other

wide-eyed wanderer

Written In The Ink

Michelle Leigh Miller

A Unique Title for Me

Piper’s Adventures