Sunshine on a rainy day

The Sunshine Award might just about be my very favourite.

I’ve been really, hugely fortunate enough to receive several now, from different bloggers who’ve all nominated me for the most wonderful of reasons – that my writing, my person, brings them light and warmth and happiness. And that’s TRULY the stunning, sunning power of the internet, of words and of the blogosphere.

Those connections; like lights on the darkest, drizzliest days.

I wouldn’t change nor swap this for the world. I love it big.

So my HUGE thanks to the lovely Sarah Summerlin (of Amycake and The Dude), and the wonderfully mysterious Inion N. Mathair (of Two Voices One Thought), who sent this beaming, lovely award in my direction*

And so we have The Rules (aren’t there always)

Offer 7 interesting/quirky/random/obscure facts about yourself

Answer the 7 questions posed by the blogger who nominated you

Nominate [mutable number of] other bloggers to receive the award, posing them 7 new questions

I figure this gives me 14 (*owp!*) quirky facts to give you (will you stay with me to the end? Even just to keep me company?). But only 7 questions to answer, because (thankyouthankyou!) Inion N. Mathair didn’t pose me any.

As for nominations – wait and see! No skipping ahead…

QuIrkY fActS

1. I have green eyes, which don’t show up well in pictures, but which have a dark rim around the outside of the irises. I’m a bit vain about my green eyes and very happy with them.

At the kinda request of Sarah – cos we BOTH have green eyes, so we swapped

2. I took Japanese class for a year as a teenager, because I once learned from a Reader’s Digest article about a Japanese POW camp, how to count to ten, and my child-self would return to the magazine, softly repeating those weird syllables and listening to the oddness as they became audible on my lips ichi, ni, san, shi, go, roku, shichi, hachi, kyu, ju, and I wanted to know more. Now I have a considerably better grasp of the language. In addition to 1-10, I can also tell you you’re pretty (kawaii), famous (yumei), an apple (ringo desu), to go straight ahead (masagau itte kudasai) or that my local vicinity is a post office (anata wa uchi no yubinkyoku desu) (?!). Money and time well spent, right? Let it NEVER be said that the English are too Empirebound to learn new languages…

3. When I was little I had a very legitimate terror of any toilet which wasn’t the one at home. I was terrorised by at least two (one which filled up while I was on it, because someone had unplugged the bath and the whole system was jammed, and another which flushed itself unexpectedly (coupled with a door lock which wouldn’t budge)). My poor mother spent YEARS (like, probably nearly into my teens) with her foot jammed under the door of public toilets, which I refused point blank to lock in case I was trapped again while the toilet filled up the world with water and drowned me to death in other people’s piss.

4. I’m more annoyed than I can say that I fell TOTALLY in love with a new song today. And came home, with the lyrics buzzing round my head, ready to find out who sang it (I didn’t catch the details on the radio) only to find that it’s a band I already love to hate, because their songs are awesome, but the members were all born in the 90’s. Which makes me feel oldish. Which I guess I should get used to, but hmmmmmm no. Not cool!

5. In spite of being thirty and TOTALLY in charge of my own self, I’m still a little a lot anxious about telling my Dad about the tattoos I’ve been thinking about for ages, and which have finally passed the two-year-test, and which I might just get this weekend. Because I think he’ll have fifty fits. And I’m due to see him today. Perhaps I should just tell him via my blog, because I’m totally chicken about it…

6. In true Ten Things of Thankful style, I’m co-opting the dance for the Seven GuardVirgins and stealing the Secret Book of Rules to see if I can apply any of them to wriggling out of posting a 6th Quirky Fact. Turns out I can. It’s in the back: Appendix D – halfway through the Chart Of All Things.

7. I LOVE spicy food. The hotter the better. And I cannot RESIST a challenge. I will sit at the table, tears streaming down my face, mouth on fire, being laughed at/with by friends as I determinedly work through whatever spicy delicacy has been put before me as a dare. I WILL CONQUER IT!

8. I just this second got asked (and decided) that if I had to die in a pulse-poundingly, heart-stopping way, it’d be a heart attack after being tazered. I heard you get a HUGE endorphin hit off being tazered, and I’m pretty curious about that…

9. I haven’t had anyone for the LONGEST TIME to make up stories with on Twitter. Lovely Piper used to fulfil that role – we’d go on epic journeys into space on our friendly whale, Orca, and slide round the rings of Neptune or dip into a passing Nebula for coffee; and before her, the wonderful Shanique and OH the stories Shanique and I would tell, but Anansi himself would’ve been jealous. But now my 140-character story-heart lies wasted and unused. So I’m recruiting. Tweet me with your intro, and if it’s awesome, we’ll story it up.

10. Too many of these are starting with ‘I’. Yeah, it’s about me (rules of the game, yo!) but it’s slightly depressing (for a writer) to realise that I really haven’t found that many creative ways of introducing each new quirk. Nuts!

11. I did some heavy landscaping this week (got covered in mud and ended up with achey muscles and everything…) and I wrote a luscious poem about it, popped it over on The Well Tempered Bards. And ONE PERSON looked. What’s wrong wit’ ya? You not a fan of poetry? *gives you side-eye*

12. Had a ninja fight online just now. Pretty sure I lost. Crashed and burned after missing a spear (thrown with surprising velocity). Hate losing fights!

13. I only discovered the show ‘Three’s Company’ this week (I was one year old when it finished. I was one year old in ENGLAND when it finished. I was one year old, in England, with no TV, when it finished). I watched the first two episodes, courtesy of the ever madsillygorgeous Joy, and I LOVE IT!

14. I hate jigsaw puzzles with a passion normally reserved for toy soldiers and mosquitoes. I’m good until there are more than 24 pieces and the picture gets complicated. I find them dull, soul-crushing exercises in utter pointlessness and I’ve discovered that life’s too short to die piece by piece as I start with the outsides and fill in the insides and the hours I’ll never get back just keep leaking away.

OW! BOOM!

Onwards, lovelies – to the Trial By Seven (questions) from Sarah

1. In what form do you prefer your chocolate?The scarcely-seen kind. I’m not a big fan, and if it comes to taking or leaving it, I’d usually leave it. BUT I do like salted chocolate. And have discovered a new joy in the form of Peanut Butter Kit-Kats. One of them a month and I’ll be just dandy.

2. What did you major in in college (or university)? Do you still do something related to that field?Awwwwh I didn’t because there was nothing I wanted to go and study so much that I was willing to endure the debt and student lifestyle (I know most people see this as a plus. I definitely did NOT). So I have no degree; no major. And on paper I’m pretty basic in terms of academic smarts. Which sucks. I yearn for a degree, but oh the COST! And it’d be for vanity anyway – I KNOW I know English well enough to bend it to my will. I KNOW I can write gud (no kidding!). I KNOW I wouldn’t be doing anything differently if I HAD that piece of paper saying I’d jumped through the examining board’s hoops…and yet, and yet…

3. Name a word you love to say.Perspicacity. I LOVE it. It sounds suave and slightly sardonic. Possibly a little bit vicious. And it can be wielded at the unwitting in manners most beautiful.

4. Name your three best physical features (your favorites, not society’s).Smile – when I smile, people smile back. I can feel my face getting happy and that grin just cracking out across my cheeks. It’s a whole-face smile – eyes and all.

Hair – always a plus – thick, dark chestnut, slightly wavy with red glints, which shines really nicely and does that swishy shampoo-ad thing if I want it to.

Muscles – odd for a girl (but whatevs) perhaps, but I LOVE being a bit hench, toned and (increasingly) defined.

5. What is something that has made you proud in the last week?That my beautiful Niece and Neff both DEMANDED time with me. And got it (cos I’m on holiday this week, yo!) and it was beautiful. Niece and I went for ice-creams in an ice-cream parlour for her birthday, and she sat all proud and 4-years-old atop a BIG stool, and grinned at me and chatted as we licked our ice-creams. Then Neff came round and we wrote to his pen-friend in Texas, and he showed me the most gorgeous picture he drew of the two of them, then we snuggled up and ‘looked at the world on Google’ before watching Giant Squid videos on Youtube. The snuggling was the best part.

6. What is one of your favorite aromas?Traction engines. Oil and smoke and grease and fire and coal and steam, shining paint and glinting metal (yes, I can smell those last two- if I could, I’d smell the *chuffchuffchuffchuff* noise they make and the quake of the earth as they rumble past in all their massive gloriousness). Gorrrrrgeous!

7. If you could only have a bathroom or a kitchen, which would you choose?
Kitchen. I can bathe in a tin bath in front of the fire. And I can have a ‘gazunder‘ in the bedroom. But I can’t, can’t give up cooking. There’s something utterly magical about taking fresh ingredients and slicing, dicing, sauteeing, marinading, massaging, chopping, stirring, adding, testing, spicing, herbing, spooning, grating and tasting my way to the perfect meal, filling the kitchen with redolent scents of whatever it is, revelling in being at one with the pans and knives and wooden spoons.

Final push now, dears! NOMINATIONS AND QUESTIONS

Which puts me into a *teensy* bit of a quandry. I’ve given lots and lots and lots of lovely sunshine lately, because I’m hugely fortunate to know so many beautiful, sunshine-y people here in the Blogosphere.

So I’m gonna do this my own way, and nominate the people I’ve had GOOD conversations with today (that’s not to say that I’ve had crap conversations with anyone today, more that the extent and sumptuousness of the interactions was noteworthy). I do enjoy the potential for conversation afforded by social media. And LOVE talking to and hearing feedback from other bloggers.

In no particular order:

Clark Scottroger – The Wakefield Doctrine

Denise – Girlie on the Edge

Kimberly – (All work and no play makes Mommy go) Something Something

Chris Carter – The Mom Cafe

Sandra Salin – Apart from my Art

*drags self up from floor and pulls errant throwing star from side, trying to ignore the blood-loss, narrows eyes and fixes on target, staggering back into combat position*

Beth Teliho – Writer B is Me

Your questions (if you choose to accept them) are as follows

1. What’s the last thing that made your stomach clench (in a good way)?

2. How did you make someone’s day better today?

3. Which (and why) do you practice; forgiveness or vengeance?

4. Which language(s) would you love to be fluent in?

5. What was the last song you fell in love with?

6. In what circumstances were you last out of control?

7. Describe the last thing you read which made you think “WOW!”

*As per a recent (and by the way totally un-responded-to) post on the Considerings Facebook Page (Hey, when you see something written there, you’re totally allowed to write back. Especially when the end of the sentence has one of those ‘?’ thingies…) I have this awful, nagging feeling in the back of my brain that there was, in fact, a THIRD person who nominated me for this award. And told me. And I was really SO happy that right there and then my brain expunged all information pertaining to WHOM THAT WAS! So if it was you, and you gave me this award and I’ve horribly, horribly snubbed you by not including my response to your generosity here, PLEASE forgive me, let me know (again) about it, and I will definitely make sure I write you down and respond properly next time!

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41 thoughts on “Sunshine on a rainy day

  1. *grins* It works. I got them done. And my Dad danced the dance of disapproval and I did the dance of 'gonna do it anyway' and we're cool. Which is a relief. Our respective positions on the matter have been affirmed and honour has been satisfied.

    Oh gosh. No. I don't poop in public places EVER. Good grief!

    I stop eating if that were a possibility. I've even been known to not eat the night before going somewhere for a day so I don't have to go while I'm out…and reading that, it doesn't sound particularly healthy, does it! Eek!

    GOOD πŸ˜€ Let me know πŸ˜‰

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  2. Oh I love you and the two year tattoo waiting period. I'm 33 and my dad only knows of one. When he found out, he did not speak to me for 3 months. I'm not even lying. I have one on my wrist and my son's name on my foot (cause he's my anchor). Just do it. Just put thought into it. Nothing worse than walking into a building, looking at a wall and getting the no smoking sign tattooed on your collar bone.
    I cannot poop in public places. I once constipated myself for over a week when we went camping. I had to go see a doctor about…ummm…unclogging the pipes.
    Challenge accepted.

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  3. Aha! Iseeya! And tonight you revealed your name πŸ˜€ Pleased to meet you properly.

    I was relieved that you didn't include questions – I think by the end I would have lost all my readers! It was serendipitous all round.

    Getting to know people better through this kind of thing is truly one of the joys of the Blogosphere. Glad you know someone of the Green-Eyed sector. We're fun people, but yes – a tendency to vanity exists.

    I cheat. If I'm out, I don't drink.

    GET IT! Oooooh life's too long not to. And too short to worry about what other people think πŸ™‚

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  4. Three friggin months when ya don't post anything fer ages πŸ˜‰

    But yay! I don't mind waiting. You know me – Little Miss Patience, right?

    I have a few flecks of weird yellow, but yours sound waaay different. Get a pic if you can, and get initiated into the gang (which reminds me, I should get Lisa, Dyanne and K2 to all do pics too, if they wanna join in…)

    Only slightly the wrong smell. It's still coal – still steam – still totally delicious. Was it only on my birthday that we met? Wow! Yeah, but there were pics of me in a steam train because apparently there are now laws in the UK which preclude untrained persons from riding a traction engine (Health and Safety gone mad!) and although WonderAunty really tried, she couldn't get me hooked up with a go on one.

    Steam train is TOTALLY the next best thing though πŸ™‚ And yes – SO happy. By the end of the day.

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  5. I don't tend to be afreet of bathrooms any more. But glad to know you were scared of them as a kid, too!

    LOL! I always forget about your tattoos πŸ˜€

    I can never see your eyes – you've always got your scottian sunglasses on :p but GOOD TO KNOW πŸ˜€ Green eyes rock. Hmmmmm I wonder if there are Ten of us throughout the hop…

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  6. I was scared of public bathrooms as a child (and sometimes, as an adult, though for different reasons), love puzzles, loathe Three's Company, like chocolate less as I've gotten older, have two tattoos (matching ones *wink wink*) and have green eyes, as does my daddy and my son.

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  7. What is this salted chocolate!? I read about it at Melanie's blog a while back. The latest craze? Somehow it doesn't sound good. But I'm gonna try it anyway!
    Tats. Really? No clues as to where and what?:) No matter, Dad's still gonna blow a gasket if you get one or 2 or 3?

    Thank you for the nomination Lizzi! Makes me feel good. Special:)
    Hey, gonna go and check out the Bards. Later!

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  8. Patience, patience! If I get my way, there'll be photographs by the end of Sunday…

    (also I gotta be careful about offering 'more about these potential tattoos' as when I did that before, I unthinkingly sent a topless pic (of my back, tho) to a friend…and only thought properly about it after I'd done it! Fortunately she was cool about it…)

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  9. Noooo nu-uh! Not even remotely bothered. There have been times when I've really, REALLY tried to eat chocolate and its just tasted SO BAD. We were out the other night, and there was chocolate cake for dessert. I really tried – I managed about 1/3 of my piece and just had to stop – I was just mulling in my mind about WHY would I eat something I didn't like just to make someone else happy?

    Thank you *SMILES*

    Apparently all the muscles in the world don't help me win at online ninja fights.

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  10. πŸ˜‰ Oh you KNOW IT!

    But after that surprise attack, I concede absolute defeat and will allow you to do as you will with the award.

    WHOOT! Four of us now, with the green eyes thing. That's so cool πŸ˜€ What shade are yours? (and also, DON is full of shit, never mind anything he says…)

    Glad you love so many of the things. Buuuuuuuuuut….traction engines. Not train engines. WHOLE different ballgame. Train engines go on rails and pull carriages. Traction engines go in fields and pull machinery (amongst other uses)

    I'm glad people like me. It's nice.

    NO – *so* not bothered about chocolate. I'd always rather have something savoury, or just candies.

    NO – puzzles are HELL. I hate hate hate HATE THEM! They're boring and a time-sink. I neeeeeeeeeeeed input – zap! zap! zap! THINGS HAPPENING. Puzzles are the antithesis of that.

    Dictionary.com is your friend.

    Glad you like it, and pleasplease accept? Wanna see what you do with it. 'Specially #1 πŸ˜‰

    Do it for Sandy…

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  11. You're not a chocolate gal? I just can't relate to that. But I agree with you on your smile – it is lovely. As are your eyes. Heck, you're just a lovely lady. With muscles.

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  12. Auto flush toilets are the very devil, Heather. And SO scary when you're not expecting them. I developed a habit of flushing before AND after, so that I'd know that it wouldn't auto-flush in the middle ifyaknowwhatimean….

    John Ritter – ALL OF THEM. So much fun. I need more πŸ˜€

    Your hubby and I would get along πŸ˜€

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  13. I am glad that my daughter is not the only one to ever be scared of public toilets. She won't even use it if it's an automatic flush. The last time she used the automatic flush she jumped up just because she heard the toilet NEXT to her flush…she wasn't even done yet. *sigh* Motherhood.

    And I am SO GLAD that you have now experienced the joy that we call John Ritter! Three's company is awesome!

    (And my hubby loves spicy foods, too…eats jalapenos like an apple. Crazy.)

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  14. How many do you know? Perhaps the majority in your world do, but given where you live, I suspect they also share the same DNA and have six toes on each head…

    I'm not sure how much of a 'contribution' my eyes really make. They're good with input, but that's rather different. πŸ˜€

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  15. *grins* Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeally! I would *never* have imagined! How many post-it notes do you have around your computer for emoticons now? We all gotta start somewhere on the path to who we are now, and who you are now is bloody FANTASTIC and I adore you, so who even cares about whoever you used to be like.

    Puzzles TERA-suck.

    We had good chats yesterday – those were my criterea for awarding, so you made the cut πŸ˜‰ Don't worry about jumping through the hoops tho – it's just a bit of fun.

    Yes, and it was OKAY! I got wee comments about 'mutilation' and 'would you not rather just cut off your leg? – it's the same thing', but I think he's decided to let this one go. Mellow, mellow and mellow πŸ˜€ *phew*

    To be honest, rightnow is SUCH a good time. All my previous concerns or 'it'll be there FOREVER's' of tattoos are like 'whatever!' in comparison to ACTUAL issues. The message and meaning of both are BEAUTIFUL.

    And whatevs – it's nice to get the awards. If you say 'thank you' prettily enough I'm fairly certain you don't have to actually go through all the hoopla of accepting them πŸ™‚

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  16. Ow is right! I deserved the mediocre rating after calling you less than human, I guess. I guess you just need to see my ankles someday.

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  17. Oh Sandy I've missed you lots. Glad you're back πŸ˜€

    Don't be green with envy. All eyes are lovely close up, right? Yours are brown aren't they? That's my second favourite.

    Still anxious! We'll see how it goes. I think I'll get stink eye for a while…

    And yet…*sigh*. Maybe one day. In the meantime I shall write my heart out.

    (I thought if anything would hook her in, that might do the trick…she fought hard not to be part of his, as you see)

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  18. Did you know that women with green eyes generally have unusually large feet and smallish breasts? What's up with that you think? They are lovely though, and I'm sure contribute to your perspicacious awesomeness.

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  19. Oh COOL, I do like knowing a kindred spirit πŸ™‚ Randomness is vastly underrated. And he trick is to enthuse, then you carry people along with you.

    Glad you understood the uncomfortable narcissistic aspect to this! πŸ™‚

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  20. Not human? OW, ya cut me deep there! I did say I like it occasionally…

    mediocre indeed :/

    They're greener still in real life. Love green eyes πŸ˜€ Ankles is odd tho :p

    I feel for your daughter – she has my very deepest sympathy! I understand her fear. It's horrible.

    The aroma is STUNNING. Love it so so so much.

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  21. Okay- first of all I love you. And do you know people called me “Chrissy” from Three's Company for YEARS!!!!! Everyone EVERYONE did!! I suppose I used to be a lot more flaky. Yup.

    Puzzles. Suck.

    I can't answer all these questions- but I am forever grateful and honored you would think of me ME for this award!!!! Thank you SOOOOO much!!!!

    Has your dad read about your tattoos yet? Go easy on her dad!!!

    I think this would be a PERFECT time to get them- ya know, with all that is going on. As long as they have the right message and meaning anyway….

    If it makes you feel better- I can't remember the first person who honored me with this award several months ago. I SUCK at receiving awards! I LOVE LOVE LOVE getting them though!!! Gah. *Ashamed*

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  22. I loved this … it was fun getting to know more about you. I feel like we're kindred spirits in the randomness of what pops into our head and that we'll talk about anything! πŸ™‚ (When I did my post for this one, I had the same thought about too many starting with “I” … it's tricky when you're supposed to be revealing things about yourself, but still. Sigh.)

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  23. I coulda, shoulda been first, Lizzi and clarkscottroger! I worked on a great comment last night, and it would.not.post. It was past my bedtime, and I just gave up the ghost. Now you'll have to settle for a mediocre one.

    They actually come across as very green in this post, and just slightly lighter than mine, I've decided. At least you didn't have to worry about automatic flush toilets, though. My poor daughter is terrified of those, and “noisy flushes” make her list of terrifying aspects of this big, wide world.

    I see my first two questions were a complete bust. I guess I can forgive you for not being able to answer #2, but chocolate, really? REALLY?!?!?! I'm not convinced you are human any longer.

    I love the question about the three favorite physical traits. It's originally my dad's, but I love to spring it on people. Such interesting, revealing answers. Mine are eye color (ha!), ankles, and ears.

    Finally, that is the most interesting favorite aroma I have ever heard. Wow!

    Great job!

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  24. I only ever got as far as the tiniest bit of Romaji. Katakana gave me headaches and I failed the reading/writing section of the exam. Bigtime. It was SUPER FUN though.

    Thank you πŸ˜€

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  25. I'll have to see if I can find any more free episodes. Joy found the first two, but no more than that *sigh* LOVED it though – so very funny. Glad you got to see the series in a timely fashion, and have great memories about it. That's awesome.

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  26. Seriously, Three's Company is still on of my favorite shows ever and could watch old reruns over and over and never tire of that show. I loved the earlier years though and remember watching them as a kid with my mom (tons of good memories on this one because of that). Hope you keep watching and enjoy πŸ™‚

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  27. *checks time “4 hours ago”* Apparently it was a pretty easy win – since SantyKid stopped showing up around here, there's not quite the same rush to be part of it!

    You're welcome – I'm glad you accept and that you'll endeavour to stay away from the Secret Book of Rules*

    I was pretty damn pleased to flip through to the back and discover APPENDICES! I mean good GRIEF *facepalm* here we've all been, labouring under chapters and sub-sections and there are APPENDICES! And a COAT. Of course.

    I think it's because the Seven GuardVirgins distracted us back…

    *Book of Secret Rules

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  28. ok now that that's out of the way…. (eat your commentationing-with-a-five-hour-advantage, british or maybe european hearts out!) who ever it is that I beat.

    I thank you for the Award. I will past them things in a Post today. I will answer them and I will scour that goddamn Book of Secret Rules* like I was Daniel Webster preparing for my Closing Argument before the jury of the darned!

    (I tip my hat: “…Appendix D – halfway through the Chart Of All Things.” damn! I wish I thought to realize that a) there was an Appendix to the Book of Secret Rules and 2) that, of course, there would needs be a COAT!)

    * aka Secret Book of Rules lol

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