Joining the Sisterhood

sisterhood-badge

I really appreciate blog awards. In the blogosphere, no one knows what I look like. No one sees my CV or cares whether or not I get a Ph.D. None of the usual things I look to in defining my worth matter. All that is here are my words. Words that come from an uncensored, more raw version of me than people in my real life see. Being nominated for an award says that despite my insecurities and without external accomplishments I am appreciated for just being myself. No feeling is more uplifting than feeling appreciated. Thank you Wee Blue Birdie for nominating me for the Sisterhood of the World of Bloggers Award and for making me feel appreciated. I am honoured. Her blog, Little Steps to Somewhere is beautifully written. She reminds me that there is more to life than the big picture. Birdie’s prose and sketches show that life is a series of moments and by slowing down enough to absorb the details of the present, whether is be the view from your window or the quiet of the night, you can really make a difference in your own life.

The guidelines for accepting this award are as follows:
• Thank the blogger who nominated you and link back to their site.
• Put the award logo on your blog.
• Answer the ten questions sent to you.
• Nominate seven blogs.
• Make a list of ten questions for your nominees

Here are the questions from Wee Blue Birdie:

  1. What kind of bird would you be, and why?
    I should ask my friend Lynne, the one with colorectal cancer, what she thinks. Lynne is a birder. She knows so much about birds, she can identify a bird by it’s call. It’s really quite amazing. I, on the other hand, don’t know much about birds, so this will require some research. A Buzzfeed quiz told me I would be a cockatiel because I’m smart, quirky, proud to be a nerd and don’t care what people think. Sounds about right, but that last part isn’t me at all. Another random quiz said I would be an owl because I love knowledge (true) and am a night person (Not!). Have you ever heard of the DOPE-4 Bird Personality Test? Some people argue that it is more accurate than Meyer-Briggs. This one says that I am a dove, which I think I agree with. The dove is a symbol of peace. I am peace-loving, empathetic and hard working. I prefer stability and am not so great at being assertive……a dove it is!
  2. Which period of history had the best clothing?
    I would say now because clothes are practical. You can pretty much wear anything you want. That’s a boring answer though, so I’ll go with Victorian Era, 1870s. At this point in time women were wearing a structured bodice with a natural waistline. The corset was in, but this was before it got really uncomfortable. Sleeves had slimmed down from the big poofs they used to be and usually ended in ruffles around the wrists. I like ruffles! Skirts weren’t as heavy as they used to be and were usually supported by a single small hoop. I think this era is closest to what we would call steampunk today.
  3. In which film do you wish you had played the lead? What would you have brought to the role?
    There are so many to choose from! I love Anne of Green Gables but, then there is Mulan, Jo March (Little Women), Elizabeth Bennett (Pride and Prejudice), Lisbeth Salander (Dragon Tattoo), Katniss Everdeen (Hunger Games), Daenerys Targaryen (even though she is from TV) and Alice (Resident Evil). I think I’ll have to go with Leia Organa (Star Wars) though. I would like to think I’d bring a little more kick butt to the role. It would be an excuse to use my karate skills!
  4. What was your favourite toy when you were a child?
    Do pencil crayons count? I couldn’t live without those. Otherwise, Puppy in My Pocket was my favourite. Collecting them was all sorts of fun. It was like collecting Lego minfigs today. They come individually packaged so you don’t know what you are getting. My sister and I would play with them for hours. I learned to recognize all the dog breeds. I used to draw them all in my sketchbook too. Eventually they came out with kitty versions and bear versions too.
  5. If you could be in the Olympics, what would your sport be?
    I would do snowboarding. I think it would be fun to do Snowboard Cross and Snowboard Slopestyle. Snowboard Cross is the event where boarders race down the hill is small heats. The terrain varies, challenging boarders to maintain control at top speed. Slopestyle is a series of obstacles and boarders get points for tricks on jumps, beams, etc.
  6. If you could cure one human illness or disease, what would it be and why?
    It would have to be cancer. It is devastating. It can happen at any age and it can happen slowly causing a lot of suffering, or it can happen quickly leaving loved ones in shock. Cancer has both genetic and environmental factors, making it nearly impossible to predict or control. Most lives today have been touched by cancer somehow. Lifting the burden of cancer would benefit all of humanity I think.
  7. What is your favourite urban myth, and why do you want it to be true?
    My favourite urban myth is that we only use 10% or some ridiculously small percentage of our brains. The notion that it is possible to activate the brain’s unused potential is based on folklore, not science. In many ways, brain function is still a mystery, but mapping studies have shown that all areas of the brain have a function. I think it would be great if this myth were true. Wouldn’t it be great to be psychic? Or telekinetic? Or even just smarter?
  8. What is your favourite unusual word?
    It was serendipity. It’s a pretty word with an even prettier meaning: a fortunate accident. It’s not that unusual anymore though. Prestidigitation is more unusual, I think. It’s fun to say as well. It means to perform magic.
  9. How would you like your writing to influence the world, or affect those who read it?
    I don’t know about influencing the world, but I’d like it if people who read my words either learned something new, could relate to me or were at least entertained.
  10. What is the best thing about being you?
    The best thing about being me is getting to enjoy my family. I have a wonderful supportive family. Growing up, I thought all families were pretty much like mine. As I’ve gotten older and gotten to know more about other families, I’ve learned to appreciate mine even more. I’m very lucky.

My Nominees

Many bloggers don’t accept these awards. I’m beginning to see why. It’s really hard to decide on nominees! You want your favourite bloggers to know you love their blogs, but you don’t want to leave anyone out or hurt feelings. I’m going to pass this award on to my favourite bloggers that don’t already have it and are likely to answer my questions 🙂
No pressure to participate if you don’t want to or can’t

Amber Dawn’s Non-paper Journal

Carrie Cordero Designs

My Weary Mind

Nerd in the Brain

Normal in Training

Patchwork Journeys

The Realm of The Chaos Fairy

Here are my questions for nominees….

  1. What story does your family tell about you over and over again?
  2. If you could choose anyone, who would you choose as a mentor?
  3. What are the top three places you’d like to go on vacation?
  4. What is one of your grandest achievements?
  5. If you had 30 minutes of free time, how would you spend it?
  6. What is the worst bit of advice you’ve ever taken?
  7. Do you have a recurring dream? What is it about?
  8. What was the last movie you watched? What did you think of it?
  9. What were you doing the last time you had a really good laugh?
  10. Which three words best describe you?

Liebester Award II

liebsteraward When I got back from NYC, I was pleased to find that Tempest Rose over at Nonsense and Shenanigans had nominated me for the Liebester award. Thank you, thank you! If you haven’t visited her before, you definitely should.  She’s creative, funny and controversial. Her blog is always a good read.

How do you feel about blog awards? I’m finding a lot of people don’t like them, are sick of them or appreciate them, but don’t participate. I think they are fun. I like to know when you like something I write/draw or if you appreciate my blog. Hearing that sort of thing makes my day! The Liebester is extra fun because it comes with questions to answer…something I love to do. Then I get to ask questions and read the answers when I pass it on…more fun 🙂

Normally, the Liebester is passed on to smallish blogs that you admire. Since I have done the Liebester before and recently nominated a bunch of my favourite blogs for other awards, I’m going to answer the questions I was given and post new questions for you (yes, you reading this) to answer.

Here are my answers to the questions from Nonsense and Shenanigans (big thanks again :D)….

1. If you could change one thing about your country, what would it be?
Language laws. I think being a bilingual country is a great thing, but it has to be done right. Do I know how to do it right? No, but I know there has to be a better way. No doubt, many of you were laughing at the antics of our language police here is Quebec over the last year or so….Not allowing terms like “pasta” and “calamari” on a menu at an Italian restaurant because they weren’t the proper French terms….please! I also remembering hearing something about artwork in a restaurant having to be removed because it had English words in it. I understand the intention, but it was getting a bit ridiculous. Things are better now, but far from perfect. Going from one extreme to another….I have lived in Quebec for 11 years and I am not fluent in French. Am I ashamed? Yes! I grew up in Ontario and took French all through school. I got excellent grades and was declared fluent in French on my report cards….then I moved to Quebec and learned I couldn’t speak or understand at all. It really is too bad. I think French is undervalued in the rest of Canada, but carries a lot of resentment with Anglophones in Quebec. It would be nice to even things out across the country.

2. What is one thing about your country that makes you unbelievably proud?
There are so many reasons to be proud of Canada. People make fun of us, but I like that we have a reputation for being kind, polite and understanding. We accept our neighbours regardless of race, sexuality or religion. There’s nothing wrong with “please”, “thank you” and “sorry” either. 🙂

3. Do you remember your dreams? If so, what is the last dream you had that affected you?
I remember the dreams that I have over and over again. The others tend to fade away. The last one that got me was about my Gran. I dreamed she had been alive these past ten years and I hadn’t known. I was so upset that I had missed out on all that time with her. Hubby said I was crying and whimpering in my sleep. Woops! I have this dream a lot, slightly different every time. I wake up so confused.

4. If a blogging genie came to you and offered you three blogging-related wishes, what would you wish?

  1. I wish I got paid to write my blog and draw my pictures.
  2. I wish I knew some programming so I could make it really original
  3. I wish I had more time to brainstorm for posts.

5. If you had the opportunity to explore undiscovered areas of the earth, OR to explore undiscovered areas of outer-space, which would you choose?
Earth definitely. I am interested in anthropology and paleontology. I’d love to learn more about ancient humans and extinct animals. There’s the ocean too. So much of the ocean has yet to be explored. I am interested by life, which is something that hasn’t been confirmed in space yet. Stars and planets are wonderful, but until we find life, I’d much rather study the Earth.

6. Why did you start blogging?
I started blogging because I wanted to talk about my mental health problems and connect with others going through similar things. I thought talking might help me feel better, or understand myself better. I thought maybe I could learn from the experiences of others. This is a part of myself I keep hidden from most of the people in real life for the obvious reasons, so blogging under an alias seemed like a good idea and so far it has been going well.

7. What is your one, ultimate, life-long dream?
I just want to be happy. I want people to be proud of me. I want to feel that I am enough, that I have accomplished enough. I want to stop worrying and working and fighting and just be able to enjoy things.

8. If you had to give up your other achievements to accomplish that dream, would you?
This is a hard question to answer. I guess I’d be fine with having different achievements, but my achievements are a big part of my dream, so I wouldn’t be accomplishing it if I gave them up. I think my dream requires a change in attitude. There isn’t a limit you work towards that says you are adequate. It’s an ongoing process. I need to learn to enjoy while I work. Easier said than done.

9. Do you believe in ghosts? Aliens?
Ghosts? I’m not sure about. The whole energy cannot be created or destroyed makes me wonder sometimes. Aliens? I wouldn’t say believe, more like hope. How could it be possible that properties have combined in this one place to support life and no where else. The universe is so vast. There has got to be something else out there.

10. What religion are you most intrigued by? (It doesn’t have to be your religion, you don’t have to be religious — just one that interests you, in good ways or bad.)
Ah religion, always a sticky topic. It can bring so much hope, but also cause so much destruction. I am interested in East Asian religions, Taoism in particular. I don’t know a lot about it. I took an Eastern Religions class in university and it briefly touched on it. I like that Taosim is associated with nature and the flow of energy. It’s about balance which strikes me a peaceful. I hope to learn more some day.

 

So here are your questions. You can answer them in the comments or on your own blog (make sure to send me the link!) You can pick and choose which you answer if you’d like, but I’d love to hear from you! 🙂

  1.  How do you get motivated when you’re in a rut?
  2. Where do you get most of your blog post ideas?
  3. Do you have any weird habits? Explain.
  4. What is something you’d like to learn more about?
  5. If you could have a vacation home anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
  6. What are three of the items on your bucket list?
  7. Who do you look up to?
  8. Which one of your posts do you think is best, why? Provide the link.
  9. Share a quote you find inspiring.
  10. If you could try out a new career, what would you try?

 

One Lovely Blog Award

Sorry for two award posts in one day, but I wanted to get caught up! I’m also not feeling too happy with myself, so thinking about my awesome bloggy/twitter friends cheers me up a bit.

Not too long ago, I was nominated by WeeBlueBirdie from Little Steps to Somewhere for the One Lovely Blog Award. Thank you WeeBlueBirdie! I am honoured. It was a lovely surprise to be nominated.

The Details

1. Thank the person nominating you and link back to them in your post (Thank you again WeeBlueBirdie!!)

2. Share seven things about yourself

3. Nominate fifteen or so bloggers you admire (Too many for me…going to alter this to five.)

4. Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know

So, seven things about me….here we go…

  1. I should wear glasses. I have them, but I don’t wear them as often as I should. I wear them for driving, watching movies and conferences.
  2. I really like coffee. I drink a lot every morning, but make sure to switch to decaf before noon. It really messes with my sleep. I use coffee to quell sweets cravings too.
  3. I am a lister. I make lists for fun! I’m not kidding. I go through baby name websites and list all my favourites just for fun.
  4. I snowblade. I have learned to ski and snowboard, but I like the blades best. They really are the best of both worlds. Your feet are free, you don’t need poles and you can do tricks 🙂
  5. I love books. Books of all kinds! I could spend hours in a bookstore. I’ve been spending a lot of time in the Arts section lately. Did you know there are books on doodling?! 😀
  6. I don’t have tattoos. I’m too indecisive for them. Picking one thing that I would like for the rest of my life is too hard. If I had to pick, maybe it would be a maple leaf…I am Canadian! 🙂
  7. I think bunnies are really cute, but I don’t think I’d ever want one as a pet.

And, here are my nominees…

Calm Kitchen – Hayley writes about coping with anxiety through blogging and healthy eating. We have a lot in common including anxiety, karate and crafts. We’re both doing the Self-esteem Challenge at the moment.

My Own Challenge – Maja writes about how she is coping with anxiety. Her posts are always entertaining!

Normal in Training – Christy is a psychologist who blogs about self-acceptance. I find I can relate to most of her posts. She makes me stop and think about my thought processes.

Part Time Monster – Diana is a fellow grad student who writes about books, girls and monsters. She blogs often, giving me daily features to look forward to.

Princess of Dragons – A creative writer, she blogs about dragons! I’ve been enjoying her 100 Theme Challenge most recently.

 

A Very Inspiring Blogger Award

A little while ago, I was nominated by the lovely Diana at Part-Time Monster for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award.

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Thank you Diana, it was such a nice surprise! I became acquainted with the Part-Time Monster through the A to Z challenge last April. Her blog is about books, girls, monsters and social culture. I particularly enjoy her Top Ten Tuesday and Feminist Friday features. So thank you again, I really appreciate the award 🙂

Now, I am passing the award on to some of the bloggers that I admire. I know a lot of people don’t do awards and that is fine, don’t feel obligated to play along. I just wanted you to know I think you’re great.

Award Details

1) The nominee shall display the Very Inspiring Blogger Award logo on her/his blog, and link to the blog they got nominated from.

2) The nominee shall nominate fifteen (15) bloggers she/he admires, by linking to their blogs and informing them about it.

Fifteen?! That’s too many for me. I’m going to modify this rule to five.

Here are the nominees..

Drama Llama – A fellow ’85er who shares thoughts and experiences on feminism and border line personality disorder (BPD). I often learn something new from her posts.

Fuzzwalk – JJ has a talent for writing. She blogs about her current mental health experiences as well as story-like posts about her past.

Little Steps to Somewhere – I enjoy WeeBlueBirdie’s writing style very much. Like myself, she works hard to remain functional with depression.

NotAPunkRocker – I get all my blog challenges from Sheena. She’s cool, creative and has a big heart. She’s someone I hope to be like when I “grow up”.

The Twisted Journey – I admire Lib’s honesty. She opens up about topics that I’m too nervous to talk about.

The Liebester Award

liebster_award

I really appreciate Meraki Geek and Princess of Dragons for nominating me for this award. It was a really nice surprise and it made my day to know that you read my blog 🙂 Thank you!

What is the Liebester Award?

Liebester is a German word meaning lovely or valued. I’ve seen a couple different descriptions of the award, so I’ll just give you the basics. It’s an award for new bloggers with a small-ish following. The idea is to recognize the work of new bloggers in the community and create more interaction. It’s a bit like a chain letter, but it’s about spreading the love and saying I like your work, nothing bad happens if you don’t want to accept it or pass it on.

Liebester Rules

  1. Thank the person who nominated you. (Shout out to the wonderful Meraki Geek and Princess of Dragons again :))
  2. Answer the 11 questions given to you. (I have double the questions to answer, sorry for the long post!)
  3. Nominate at least 5 blogs with less than 200 followers (approximately).
  4. Post 11 questions for your nominees to answer
  5. Post a comment on the your nominees’ blogs to let them know they’ve been nominated.

Questions from Meraki Geek

  1. What is your favorite smell?
    This is going to be a weird one. If you’ve ever smelled it, you’ll understand. Laura Secord ice cream cones. I don’t know if they make them fresh in the store or not, but walking by, yum! It smells soooo good. It makes me happy.
  2. If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor? Why?
    I’d want someone inspiring and clever, some0ne who is good with people and who demonstrates strength against the hard times and embraces learning. My Gran represents all these things, so I would like her as a mentor. She has been gone for a decade now, but continues to inspire me every day.
  3. Name one word to describe you.
    I asked my hubby this question and he said “Cupcake”, his pet name for me. Not really what I had in mind, but I’ll go with “sweet”.
  4. What song is stuck in your head right now (or what was the last song that was stuck in your head)?
    The last song that was stuck in my head was Iko Iko by Zap Mama
  5. When was the last time you were nervous? Why?
    The last time I was nervous was last week when I was going to have a lunch meeting with my boss. I planned to bring up a few touchy subjects related to how things were going, so I was freaking out a bit. Unfotunately, she invityed someone else to lunch, so the conversation never happened. Something I have to look forward to this week I suppose.
  6. What top 3 characteristics would your ideal boss have?
    Good communication is definitely number one! Then honesty and determination
  7. What’s something you hate doing? Why?
    I hate wasting time!! Unfortunately it’s hard to anticipate and not always avoidable. I always feel like I don’t have enough time, so having to re-do something or spend 2 hours commuting to do something that takes 10 minutes, drives me bonkers.
  8. Name a movie or book whose main character and/or storyline represents you or a time in your life.
    This one is hard! The first one that comes to mind is “The Bell Jar” by Sylvia Plath just because I identify with the feelings the main character experiences.
  9. Which store would you choose for a shopping spree?
    Lululemon!!
  10. If you had to change your username/url to something completely not yourself, what would it be?
    Spotlight on the Extrovert
  11. How do you know when something/someone is totally right for you?
    You just know! There are no doubts, no need for a pros and cons list or anything of the sort. I also believe there are external cues subtly telling you, you’re on the right track.

Questions from Princess of Dragons

  1. What is your preferred cheese?
    I’m not a huge fan of cheese on its own, so my favourite has got to be the kind that comes in cake! That could be cream cheese or ricotta I guess.
  2. If you could own any animal, what animal would it be (include fantasy animals)?
    A unicorn. Horses are loyal friends and unicorns are magic. It would be fun to have some magic in life.
  3. Mention one thing that’s on your bucket list. (Bucket list: a list of things you want to do before you die).
    I want to go to South Africa to see where my husband worked with white lions for a year. This has big significance for me. I will explain one day.
  4. What colour do you think your soul is?
    I think it would be a shade of blue. Something mid tone since I’m not light and airy, but I’m not a dark person either. Periwinkle perhaps? It makes me think of peace, sadness and
  5. If you could try any job for a day, what job would you try and why?
    I would be a model. I’d want to see if I could handle it for even a day without falling apart, plus it would be fun to dress up, have makeup done and take photos.
  6. Name one good thing that’s happen to you today.
    I’ve had a nice relaxing morning with my coffee. 🙂
  7. What’s your Myer’s Briggs profile?
    My what? I had to look this up. It’s a personality test. I took one of the free ones and I am INTJ. Apparently that is a really rare one. Most of it fits (curious, intelligent, perfectionist, avoids attention) except for the high self-confidence, lol.
  8. Quick! Pick your weapon of choice!
    A katana! It’s a traditional Japanese sword. Not only are they beautiful, but they are well balanced and razor sharp!
  9. When was the last time you cried?
    I can’t remember specifically. It was probably because I was forcing myself to do a workout and I started to panic. Silly, I know.
  10. What would you call the novel about your life?
    The idea of doing this properly stresses me out (Perfectionist in me). So I’m going to go with the first thing that pooped into my head….”Depression, Doodles and Discovery”.

Before I list the blogs I’ve nominated, I just want you to read what Meraki Geek called the fine print. I apologize in advance if you already have lots of followers (yay you!), were already nominated (yay again!), don’t like these kind of things (I understand), don’t have time to participate (believe me, I understand), or just plain ol’ don’t wanna participate (no worries). Sorry if I didn’t nominate you and you wanted a nomination. Sorry if I did nominate you and you didn’t want a nomination. Participation is totally optional and no offense taken or meant.

The Nominees (alphabetically)

  1. Calm Kitchen – Calm Kitchen is about coping with anxiety by maintaining a healthy diet. I think it’s a great concept as I know my diet greatly effects my mood. There are plenty of good recipes too!
  2. Don’t Forget to Blog – I originally followed her on the Anxiety United site, but she has recently decided to branch out on her own. She writes about her experiences with anxiety and depression. I admire the brutal honesty.
  3. Gretchenjoy – Gretchen is fun and has a great attitude. She blogs about several issues including body image, self-worth and love.
  4. My Own Challenge – Another brutally honest blogger coping with anxiety. She recently interviewed people suffering from anxiety around the world. Her questions were intelligent and eye-opening. I was impressed.
  5. Natalie Bowers – A creative and curious soul, Natalie blogs about her life and recovery from depression. She is real, I can often relate to the things she says.
  6. Normal in Training – A more experience blogger, she’s a psychologist and blogs about self-acceptance. She is a kindred spirit, our blogs often cover similar topics!

And the questions….

  1. Why did you start blogging?
  2. If you could describe yourself with one word, what would it be?
  3. If you could be famous for one thing, what would it be?
  4. What advice would you give to fellow mental health sufferers?
  5. If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life what would it be? Why?
  6. Which fictional character do you relate to most? Why?
  7. What did you want to be when you grew up?
  8. What is your greatest strength and your biggest weakness?
  9. What is your dream vacation?
  10. Which of the many quotes about mental health speaks to you most?
  11. What’s the most positive thing about today?

 

That’s all folks!

 

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