Taking a Moment to Say Thank You

Since my current archive of photographs is not inspiring a response to this week’s photo challenge theme of “Kiss”, I will take this post opportunity to instead say thank you to several bloggers who have been kind enough over the past couple of months to pass awards my way!  I enjoy reading others’ award posts for the opportunity to get to know a blogger a bit better, for the introduction to new blog voices out there, or for the reminder of old blog voices I have missed along the way.

Maddie at Breezy Books flattered me with the 2012 Blog of the Year Award. I have a Susan Hunter mystery loaded on my nook and look forward to finding time to read the first in the series authored by Maddie!  Check out her often humor-filled posts, as well as her series of mystery books.

Blog of the Year Award 2 star jpeg

Across the Bored generously listed Travel. Garden. Eat. when nominating blogs for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award!  I enjoy the varied nature of Across the Bored’s musings, and know you would, as well.  I was flattered to receive another nomination for this award shortly thereafter from Hearing with the Eye!  Sumithra is a young woman with an inspiring voice who I know will continue to make her mark on this world.

very-inspiring-blog-award20121   very-inspiring-blog-award20121

Taking to the Open Road nominated my blog for its first Versatile Blogger Award!  Peggy’s blog takes readers all over the world with its travel photos and insights — a wonderful opportunity to vicariously travel while building the bucket list.


Another nomination for the Versatile Blogger Award came from Dorothy of Musings of a Horse Mom.  Dorothy actually has a couple of different blogs that I enjoy, including Eyes to Heart (whose response to the photo challenge “Kiss” this week definitely touches your heart!).


I continue to enjoy so many of your blogs and am always amazed at all of the talent and creativity this world holds.  In the interest of space and time, I will pick the “rules” of just one of the awards to pay it forward this time — the Very Inspiring Blogger Award.

The rules of the award are:

1. Display the award logo on your blog

2. Link back to the person who nominated you

3. State 7 things about yourself:

  1. I will soon be accompanying my oldest son for several college visits in Boston and Washington, D.C., and look forward to enjoying fresh seafood that can be a scarce commodity in Minnesota!
  2. I came from two biochemist parents and to their horror took Physical Anthropology to satisfy my science credits for my undergraduate degree.
  3. I do not believe that food can have too much garlic.
  4. I am a night owl.
  5. I am a “Downton Abbey” fan.
  6. I am not sure I will be able to finish my book club’s next read, “Big Breasts Wide Hips” by Mo Yan, the winner of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Literature.
  7. Despite living in Minnesota for over 20 years, I enjoyed my first sauna only a few years ago. (Look for a future post on Minnesota sauna culture soon!)

4. Nominate other bloggers for this award and link to them.  

I would like to recognize some of the more recent blogs I have been delighted to discover:

Ciao! ~ Kat

You Flatter Me, Blogger Friends!

Recently, I read a blog post by Peter Bregman, one of my favorite business-related bloggers in the Harvard Business Review Blog Network.  He posted a thoughtful commentary titled: “Do You Really Need to Say Thank You?”   His post was an excellent reminder of the virtue and value of those two little words — “thank you.”  No matter what the setting or the context, and whether it be a compliment, a positive communication, or a kind action, acknowledgement is important.  I encourage you to read Mr. Bregman’s post, which has application beyond the business world, as he so accurately conveys the passion, vulnerability, and sincere interests that so many of us share when we communicate by our posts and commentary throughout the blogosphere.

As I read his post, I was reminded of the need to formally thank several blogger friends for their kindness in thinking of Travel. Garden. Eat. when it came time to nominating blogs for various awards.   Thank you!

I waffle between feeling cynical about these things and appreciating them —  I discovered many of my favorite blogs through others’ awards posts, and I enjoy getting to know other bloggers I follow through some of the tidbits they share in their “acceptance posts.”  The “awards process” is subjective — we all enjoy different blogs for different reasons, and the diversity just adds to the rich content of the blogging community.  Ultimately, though, I do think these awards are a nice way to introduce newer blogs we have discovered and help expand their audience, while also providing yet another way to just say “thank you” to longstanding blogs we enjoy on a regular basis.  And I would be lying if I said I did not feel that happy skip in my heart when I receive note of a blogger’s acknowledgement of my blogging efforts (just as I do when I receive a particularly heartfelt comment)!

RunningKatTales (now how could I not follow another Kat’s blog!?) honored me with the “Very Inspiring Blogger Award.”  Kat’s blog provides motivation to get outside and run with the dog or a friend, even on those cold and snowy days!  She is gearing up for a half-marathon and I enjoy sharing her journey.  It has been a couple of years since I last found time to train for a half, so I train vicariously through others like Kat for now.  Thank you, Kat!

As an award recipient, there are “rules” to follow. They are:

  • Display the award logo on your blog. ~ yep
  • Link back to the person who nominated you. ~ done
  • State 7 things about yourself. ~ OK, OK
  • Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them. ~ check
  • Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements. ~ in process

Seven things about me?

  1. I have items of clothing I have not worn in years because they need a button sewn or hem repaired . . .
  2. I love having all four seasons (although in Minnesota, we tend to skip spring and go straight from winter to road construction season).
  3. When I was young I made library cards for my books and would not let my younger sister “borrow” them unless she “checked them out.”
  4. I have never had a broken bone.
  5. I am thankful my boys have taken up nordic/cross-country skiing and moved away from downhill skiing — as I hit my 40’s I increasingly became paranoid about falling and breaking a bone.
  6. I like liver and onions (my mom would only make the dish when my dad was not home, as he could not stand the smell).
  7. I can’t let the holiday season go by without watching “It’s A Wonderful Life.”

In the spirit of “keeping the blogosphere a beautiful place,” the following blogs with primarily photography-focused content fit the bill.  I encourage you to check them out if you have not before (or certainly continue to follow if you already do):

Prego and the Loon nominated me for the “Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award”!  Her blog provides food for thought on an issue that deserves as much awareness and attention toward prevention as possible — domestic violence and abuse.  Thank you, Prego!

The rules for receiving this award are as follows.

  1. Provide a link and thank the blogger who nominated you for this award. ~ check
  2. Answer 10 questions. ~ see below
  3. Nominate 10-12 blogs that you find a joy to read. ~ see below again
  4. Provide links to these nominated blogs and kindly let the recipients know that they have been nominated. ~ working on it
  5. Include the award logo within your blog post. ~ done

The Questions to be answered:

  1. Your favorite color?  Blue.
  2. Your favorite animal?  I have become somewhat partial to black labs.
  3. Your favorite non-alcoholic drink?  Coffee.
  4. Facebook or Twitter?  Facebook.
  5. Your favorite pattern?  This time of year, anything with snowflakes comes to mind.
  6. Do you prefer getting or giving presents?  Giving presents.
  7. Your favorite number? I have to go with Prego’s response on this one: “I can’t even pretend to like one individual number.”
  8. Your favorite day of the week?  It really depends on the week . . .
  9. Your favorite flower?  Echinacea purpurea (purple coneflower)
  10. What is your passion?  Travel is right up there — both traveling myself as well as armchair traveling vicariously through others photos and stories.

Living in my house of testosterone I have no aversion toward bloggers of the opposite sex, but keeping with the theme of the award, I am passing on this honor to other “sisters” in the blogging world who share much joy through their blogs:

Did you know if you enter the word “Liebster” in the topic search for WordPress you can find three or four variations and badges for this award?  Fat Lies and Fairytales was kind enough to nominate me for the award generally going to blogs with less than 200 followers (and her award post reflects one of the “other” Liebster awards that goes to blogs with less than 3000 followers).  I enjoy following Fat Lies and Fairytales for her eye-catching photography, edgy humor, and diverse musings on life.  Thank you, “FLAF” for bestowing this honor upon Travel. Garden. Eat.!

The Rules for the Liebster Award are as follows:

  • Link back to the blogger who gave you this award ~ check
  • Post the award to your blog ~ check
  • Post 11 things about yourself. ~ how much do you really want to know about me?  I am going to assume what I shared above and below are plenty!
  • Answer the questions asked of you (I dodged this bullet since Fat Lies forgot to pose questions to me :-)), plus create 11 new questions for your nominees to answer ~ can I say that I fully appreciate any nominated bloggers who decide to massage the rules on this one, but should you decide to pull out all the stops I have created a list of 11 new questions below!
  • Nominate 11 people you think deserve the award and link them to your post. ~ check (see below)
  • Go to their pages and tell them they have been chosen. ~ I’m getting there
  • (one of the posts I saw regarding this award also said “no tag backs” which I assume means “pay it forward, don’t pay it back”)

I cannot confirm with all that they have less than 200 followers, but some are newer to me so I have included!  Congrats and check out these Liebster nominees:

If you are a glutton for punishment, nominees, I do look forward to your responses to the following questions (I have tried to create questions that don’t require labor-intensive answers!):

  1. A place you have never traveled to that is on your travel bucket list?
  2. Book you are currently reading?
  3. Have you ever bungee-jumped?
  4. Morning bird or night owl?
  5. How long have you been blogging?
  6. Which movie can you watch again and again?
  7. One of your favorite quotes?
  8. Your favorite recipe (in full or via link)?
  9. Pet peeve?
  10. If you could invite anyone to join you for dinner — fictional or real, from the past or the present — who would you invite?
  11. Your favorite blog post — from your blog!

Hey, is anyone still out there?  I would like to nominate anyone still reading this post at this point for the 2012 Blogger of the Year award!

But, first, I have to gratefully thank Frankfurtmalin for the generous award nomination of 2012 Blog of the Year.  Malin has so many lovely posts, thankfully many in English since my Swedish skills are nil! — reflections on motherhood with a recent beautiful new addition to her family, photography, and everyday life of an opera singer in Europe!  Grazie, Malin!

I have decided to approach this award like the Oscars “Best Picture” award for movies — while there are many, I am going to pick just one.  I would like to honor “Lake Superior Spirit” with this nomination, in recognition of Kathy’s inspiring, motivational, beautiful, spirit-filled posts, time and time again.  If you  have not had the pleasure of a visit to Kathy’s blog, spend some time exploring her posts old and new.

Here are the rules to accept this award:

  1. Select the blog(s) you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award ~ this was difficult, truly, because I enjoy so many different blogs and so many different bloggers for so many different reasons!
  2. Write a blog post and tell us about the blog(s) you have chosen – there’s no minimum or maximum number of blogs required – and ‘present’ them with their award. ~ see below!
  3. Please include a link back to this page ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award – and include these ‘rules’ in your post (please don’t alter the rules or the badges!) ~ yes, sir!
  4. Let the blog(s) you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the ‘rules’ with them ~ soon enough!
  5. You can now also join our Facebook page – click the link here ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience 6 As a winner of the award – please add a link back to the blog that presented you with the award – and then proudly display the award on your blog and sidebar … and start collecting stars…

With my first “Blog of the Year” nomination, I receive one nomination, and the following badge:

So thankful I did not have to try and color in the lines myself . . .

Now that I am likely left talking to myself at the end of this long-winded post, I bid you adieu until next time.  Thank you to all of you who fill my Reader with tantalizing dishes, thought-provoking discussions, stunning images, and humourous tales.

Ciao! ~ Kat

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

I am honored to have received the “Very Inspiring Blogger” Award nomination from Jane at India 2008-2012!  Jane’s posts and photos have helped to pique my interest in India’s culture, food and people.  She is a prime example of the interesting people you “meet” in the blogosphere, opening your eyes to different thoughts and sharing different images you may not otherwise encounter in daily life.  Thank you, Jane!

In accepting this award, I must follow the 3 rules:

1. Thank the person who nominated me.

2. Share 7 things about myself.

3. Pass the award to 15 nominees.

Thank you again, Jane — I enjoy the varied tone and subjects of your posts, and look forward to reading about your upcoming trip to India!

Seven things about me?  How about five?

  • I have rarely met a red wine I didn’t like.
  • I have run eight (I think that’s right?) half-marathons since 2001 (with the philosophy of “slow or fast, we all get the same t-shirt”).
  • “The Little Prince” is one of my favorite books.
  • I share my home with three black labs and two cats.
  • Closely related to the previous fact?  My house is never truly clean.

In passing on the award, I thought of the sub-title of this Award — “keeping the blogosphere a beautiful place” — which brought to mind some of the most visually inspiring blogs I have read of late (using the manageable number five again for the number of blogs “nominated”, as it’s another glorious weekend day and I need to get outside to continue stockpiling that Vitamin D before the snow starts to fly!).  If you have not had a chance to see these bloggers’ images, sit down with your cup of coffee or glass of wine, and lose yourself in the beauty of their posts:

Canadian Hiking Photography

Travels with the Blonde Coyote


Adventures in Kevin’s World

Focused Moments

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and images with readers like me on a regular basis.  It is a gift, and it is appreciated.

Ciao! ~ Kat