It is award season, and whilst I may not be wearing a fancy designer dress with sparkles and borrowed jewelry from Tiffany’s (or crippling Jimmy Choo Shoes!), I have dabbed a little Chanel No 5 behind my ears and at the wrists. After all is not everyday you get nominated for a Sunshine Blogger Award. In this instance courtesy of author and poet, Mary Smith of Mary Smith’s Place to whom I am most grateful….
Before I embarrass myself answering Mary’s questions on my personal life…. here are the rules.
Thank the blogger who nominated you in a blog post and make a link back to their blog.
Answer the 11 questions sent to you by the person who nominated you.
Nominate up to 11 new blogs to receive the award, and then write them 11 new questions – or cheat like I did and use the same questions 🙂
List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or your blog
Here are the questions I received and my answers:
What was the driving force behind the creation of your blog?
I had taken a writing hiatus for about four years when I was back living in the UK working and caring for my mother. When we returned to our own home again, I needed to get back into the habit of writing everyday, blogging six years ago was just taking off big time, and after a couple of false starts, I created Smorgasbord in October 2013.
Apart from wanting to get back into writing, there was also the question of boredom, as I tend to get into mischief if I am not kept busy!
What was your vision for your future in blogging/writing when you first started this blog? How has that vision evolved?
I wanted to build a platform to promote my own books, share my experience in nutrition and meet new people. That evolved into the Cafe and Bookstore offering free book promotion and Smorgasbord became a blog magazine in 2017 with columnists for music, travel, food, gardening, literature,health and recently numerology. It has become far more to me than I first envisaged when I posted once a week.
Now there are at least five posts a day on various subjects, many that I write but plenty of great guest writers too. I don’t know what I would do without it honestly. I have met so many astonishingly talented people who I consider to be friends, and it has expanded over into social media around the world. I love it that wherever I may be, I can chat to someone in Australia as they are going to bed, and someone in the USA as they get up on the morning. Brilliant – Pen pals on speed.
What age were you when you realized you loved writing?
That would be when I was about seven years old, and writing my own sick notes for school. I did tell you that if I get bored I get into mischief! We lived on a naval station in Malta, in a house at the top of a steep flight of steps. I would walk down those steps with my satchel to the manned main gate, where I was supposed to catch the school bus. Instead I would deposit my satchel behind the guard house, and wait for an old farmer who came daily to tend his field of prickly pears on the station. As he was drawing away from the guard house, I would hop on the back of his donkey pulled cart and hide under a sack. The school bus would come, stop and be waved on by the guard on the gate, who assumed I was not going to school that day.
I would spend the day helping the farmer who spoke no English (but we managed to communicate just fine). He shared his rustic lunch of bread, goat’s cheese and a peeled prickly pear with me (teaching me carefully how to remove the fruit from the lethal outer coat) and water from a wine flagon (I think it was water!) the donkey got some too. About 3pm, he would pack up to go home, and I would hop on the back on the cart under the sack, slipping off and sneaking behind the guard house to collect my satchel. When the school bus appeared over the hill, I would trudge up the steep set of steps home for tea.
The next day I would take a note into school with me, saying that Sally was sick yesterday and unable to attend school – with a scribbled MEColeman.. for my mother’s signature that I had studied carefully. I would carry out this deception every four or five weeks and I got away with it for a year until the old farmer stopped coming.
That’s when I realised the power of the written word!
How has your life changed as a result of the electronic age? Is it better/worse/the same?
For example……..otherwise we would be here all day!
It is so much better. I cannot imagine having to ring the cinema or buy the local paper to find out what is on at the movies.
I don’t have to waste time ringing around for an item I want, I just google it and the location and it tells me where it is in stock, and if I want they will deliver it to save me driving 20 miles to pick it up.
I don’t have to go to a travel agent to book my flight or holiday or go back to pick up my tickets. I can check in online instead of queuing at the airport, and I can book my seat instead of taking pot luck on the day.
When I am house hunting I don’t have to go to the area that I am planning on moving to, visit every estate agent and end up with a foot high tower of paper details. Now I can search in any country in the world, bookmark the details, contact the agent and arrange an appointment with a few keystrokes.
When I want to change my passport I can do that all online and receive my new documents in a week or two without worrying about sending my old passport and it getting lost before the new one arrives.
I can sell my digital books online, without having to print them, or to pay enormous amounts of postage to get them somewhere…. and readers can buy with a few keystrokes, at a great price and have them downloaded immediately.
And last and by no means least, when I leave a place, I only leave behind the physical building.. I take my friends with me whereas before, leaving a town or even a country meant losing them.
What was the very last website you visited today?
That is easy… Mary Smith’s Place so that I could copy the questions across to respond to the award. Recommend you pop over there too as lots to read and enjoy.
What was the first website you visited when you woke up four days ago?
That is also easy… always Smorgasbord, to respond to the overnight comments and to boost the midnight post… then I go browsing…that takes me through to elevenses…
If you could change one thing about your past, what would it be?
I should never have eaten that first bar of chocolate as it set in motion a rollercoaster love affair that has become an eternal triangle.. between me, the chocolate and the weighing scales!
Everything else, good and bad was part of life’s enrichment and provided some valuable lessons.
How would your life be different today if that one thing from your past were to change?
If you have children, tell me…how did your parenting change from the time you had your first child until the time you had your last?
We don’t have children. Probably just as well with our nomadic lifestyle in the last 39 years; anyway I still have not decided what I am going to when I grow up myself yet.
Tell me about the funniest experience you’ve had in the past month.
When I first came back to Ireland three years ago, I went to a hairdresser in the next town over for two appointments. I liked the stylist and went back the third time only to discover that she had left. I was not very happy with the result on that visit and since then I have been to other hairdressers now and then for a cut. A couple of weeks ago I decided to try a different hairdresser in my own town, and whilst the stylist was washing my hair, she said she recognised me.. I assured her that I didn’t think we had met.. But she insisted and then asked me if I had been to the former hairdressers. I admitted that I had…. and she said she was the girl who had been my stylist for those first two visits, but she went by her own name now, not the one they had given her! We did laugh, delighted that she is now very close and she is back doing my hair again.
What do you have planned for the upcoming holiday season?
We don’t tend to take summer holidays as we lived in the sun for so many years. We like to take long weekends out of season and explore different areas. I do go over and house and dog sit for my sister and that means visiting my home town and friends which is a break and fun too.
If I nominate you and you have an award free blog, please view the nomination as a compliment: you are under no obligation to respond. (Thanks Mary for that statement)
Annette Rochelle Aben
James J. Cudney
Here are my 11 questions for you.
What is the most daring thing you have done?
Name one item still on your bucket list.
If you had a time machine, would you choose to live in the past or the future?
What is your favorite movie of all time?
What is one piece of advice you would give to your younger self?
What is one of your guilty pleasures?
Do you have any pets?
Tell us about one thing that really gets your goat.
Who would you invite to a celebrity dinner. List 5, dead or alive?
What is your most annoying bad habit?
Name your current favorite song playing on your playlist right now.
Thank you for dropping in today and I hope if you have time you will pop into the blog posts I have selected for my nominees as they are well worth reading and following.. Sally.
Thanks again Mary Smith for the nomination…