There’s an unusually persistent breeze this morning. The sky is crisp and blue, like a new Wedgwood dome above our heads. The air feels fresh and the light is limpid. It is, I think, the beginning of our ‘winter’ season here in Paradise.
A perfect day to air those infrequently used clothes and linens, to prepare them for the sea voyage ahead. But before I do, it’s time for a little airing of affairs here on TWLG, for there are kindnesses to acknowledge, nominations to be thankful for.
It’s astounding, really, how an introductory device like our blogging awards can at times act as a balm, pulling you up short and forcing you to remember that what you’re sad about, or frightened or unsure of, is all part of the universal fabric of humankind, and that what you’re so tied up in today will be over before you know it. How can that be?
I like to think of each connection I make in our blogosphere as a window into another world, an opportunity to learn about other ways of life, other cultures, and to meet other people. Sometimes, the connections we make with these interesting strangers around the world are so real they can elicit the miracle of human empathy – gladness, sadness, joy and sorrow float from window to window with the speed of a ‘publish’ button.
So, today as I look out the window I am confounded by messages of support and encouragement that remind me I’m not alone, and that yes, indeed, so many of the things I think and feel are thoughts and feelings shared by us all. Thank you for your comments, thank you for your likes and follows, and today, most especially, thank you to the bloggers who have nominated TWLG for Awards. It seems that today I’m being sprinkled with star dust and it is magic.
Thank you Emily. I’m not often thought of as sweet, I don’t think, so this is an especially ‘sweet’ (I couldn’t resist!) moment. Most of you will know Emily’s gorgeous and original blog Hoof Beats and Food Prints, but if you don’t, go, straight away.
Before I reveal my nominations for this luscious award, I must answer some questions.
Cookies or cake?
Neither is really my downfall, though I will admit to the occasional craving for a home-made Anzac Biscuit – those ultra-crisp, chewey-centred, oat, coconut and golden syrup biscuits beloved of Aussi and New Zealand kids – so cookies, I guess.
Chocolate or vanilla?
Despite the very best role model in my father, chocolate doesn’t do it for me. I’m more a sour person – give me a lemon or passionfruit gelato every time. So vanilla, I guess – it’s a nice foil for what goes with it.
What is your favourite soft treat?
I am fond of Pavlova with all the trimmings – ice cream and cream, piled with a mountain of fruit, all smothered by lashings of fresh passionfruit. Is that soft? If you insist – the passionfruit creme brulé at The Wallaawa – my idea of heaven.
When do you most want sweet things?
When I haven’t had enough fruit to eat. Oh, alright, after a very hot curry, when my mouth is still tingling from the chilli – I love that combination of sweet and chilli – just a mouthful or two will do the trick
If you had a mild nickname, what would it be?
Is this shameful, I never had a nickname? Some people call me M.
My Super Sweet Blogger nominees are:
- Amy – The World is a Book
- Dallas, Crazy Train To Tinkey Town
- Small House Big Garden
- Christine – Dadirridreaming
- Our Adventures in Croatia
Kat at the delicious and beautiful Travel, Garden, Eat nominated TWLG to display the hipster logo of the Sistahood of World Bloggers. This is a group I particularly enjoy being part of, and accept with glee. Do you know Kat’s blog? If you don’t, I suggest you pop right over to become acquainted. But come straight back, because I’d like you to check out these sistas I always enjoy.
The rules state I’ve to answer ten questions but I answered them a couple of weeks ago, apropos The Reader Appreciation Award, so you’ll have to make do with those, or the super sweet answers, ’cause that’s all you’ll get out of me this week 🙂
- Liza at Zeebra Designs & Destinations
- Madoqua at Have you Ever?
- Michelle at, Silk Purse Production’s Blog
- EllaDee – take your pick of EllaDee Words, EllaDee Images, or
- and George Weaver at She Kept a Parrot. George hasn’t been actively posting lately so perhaps our visits will encourage her to resume posting some of her stunning photographs.
I have an inspiring new friend from the Basque country of Spain and was bowled over, and flattered when she nominated TWLG as an Inspiring blog. Ilargia might be sad to be living away from the sea these days, but she shares her spirit of adventure and the beautiful landscapes of northern Spain with the world.
There are thousands of inspiring blogs and bloggers in my corner of the blogosphere and it feels churlish to nominate only a handful of blogs, so I’ve restricted my nominations to three:
- Betty, whose work for Heifer 12×12 around the world is informative, beautiful and inspiring to follow, even vicariously
- Nicole, at Third Eye Mom, whose role of ambassador for the UN’s Shot at Life is so necessary
- and Angeline, at Angelinem’s Blog, whose recently completed 365 photography project has inspired me to use a similar tool to turn my sad move from Sri Lanka back to Australia into an adventure by exploring my new world through the lens of my camera – and in the process, learn how to use it better.
I do love beautiful things (S, my oldest friend, in Switzerland, says my love of beautiful things is a defining characteristic), and I try to make my blog and posts as beautiful as I can – so you can imagine how happy I was when a new blogger nominated TWLG as a beautiful blogger in her first acceptance speech. Oceanbound’s Adventures has a passion for the deep and an intimate acquaintance with the seaside.
Again, there are so many beautiful blogs I enjoy every day, but I hope these few might be new to you
- Myau Myau’s Photo Gallery – glorious photographs of the most perfect of Japan’s temples and gardens – it’s like walking across those stepping-stones every time I visit.
- Echwalu Photography takes me places I’ve never been
- Sreeniviews seems to have an unending variety of the most exotic and gorgeous photographs of “beautiful India” (sorry, I couldn’t resist linking the beautiful award with the latest of India’s advertising tags).
- Peter’s Adventures is like opening the pages of the most comprehensive picture gallery of the most beautiful places on earth.
I’m over the moon to be collecting star dust in the form of Blog of 2012 stars – proud and very happy. Thank you, thank you
- Emily, of Bella Remy Photography, at the gorgeous Hoof Beats and Foot Prints
- Sue’s Art and Food – there’s much to enjoy here, not least her wry fatalism.
- Expat Alien – Kathleen’s childhood as a Third Culture Kid, growing up around the world is probably the only childhood I’d consider swapping with mine. On top of which, she’s published a book about it … but I’m not jealous, honestly, just avid to read more!
- Another Day in Paradise – We share a passion for Venice, but more, Sylvia travels frequently, to the most exotic of locations and commutes, it seems, from paradise in one hemisphere to paradise in another, depending on the seasons.
- Beyond the Brush – Now, people who can paint …
- A Nomad in the Land of Nizwa – Next to beauty I love the exotic, in fact exotic probably rules my life, so you can imagine how I enjoy the stories and images of Cat’s life in Oman.
I thought, since it is almost the end of the year, that this might be the appropriate time, and vehicle, to recognise a few of the bloggers whose initiative plays such an integral role in my blogging life and enjoyment: the challenge masters.
To these people – whether or not I am able to respond to every challenge – thank you for the inspiration of your prompts, thank you for the exposure, and thank you for introducing me to the community of bloggers I have met through your sites.
- Jake, at Jakesprinter’s Sunday Post
- Ailsa, at Where’s My Backpack?
- Marianne, East of Malaga
- Sue, A Word in Your Ear
- Fritz, Flickr Comments
- This Man’s Journey
- Cee’s Photography
- Ed at Sunday Stills
While they are much the same as the rules for other awards, the rules for Blog of the Year – 2012 have a couple of extra steps, so I’ll past them here.
- Select the blog(s) you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award
- 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.
- 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!)
- Let the blog(s) you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the ‘rules’ with them
- You can now also join our Facebook group – click ‘like’ on this page ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award Facebook group and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience
- 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…
BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!
Oh Francine, bless you! 🙂
Congratulations… you do deserve all the nominations… love this blog…
Oh, I’m so pleased you enjoy visiting bulldogsturf – thank you 🙂
Congratulations on your bagful of awards!! You deserve each one. 🙂
Jennifer you sweet thing – thank you 🙂
I appreciate your comments Phil 🙂
Congrats on the much-deserved array of recognition! I look forward to visiting many of the blogs new to me — the best thing about the awards process! Such a busy time for you as you prepare for your journey! ~ Kat
Clock’s been stopped, temporarily, Kat – i’m not ready just yet !
A quick click on like for now before I rush off to my job, and then I’ll be back to read more slowly and check the people mentioned here. You deserve each and every award!
Well, it doesn’t pay to sleep a little later in the morning, have to speed scan through blog posts before work, and completely miss one’s nomination for an award.
Thanks so much M! I truly appreciate this, and am honored!
You’re very welcome! It’s difficult to find a balance between recommending the blogs you enjoy the most and overburdening them with incessant nominations – I hope this one won’t be a nuisance for you 🙂
I like the idea of windows… It is so true! Thank you so much too for your nomination – I am honored to be a “sista” (and recently I have written quite a bit on the woman’s perspective!) There are some great recommendations here, and I will have to explore each and every one! Thanks again…
Well, I thought the Sisterhood was the perfect place for a woman who writes often about women’s issues 🙂
congratulations on your awards and the six stars! – and thank you for sharing the awards with other great blogs
That’s the best part – sharing other blogs! Hope you were able to catch up with some of them, and thank you for your support 🙂
Congratulations on the swag of awards 🙂 and a big thank you for nominating me for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award – an honour for me to accept. I’ve enjoyed my glimspes through and into the window of your world, and the journey with you which still has a way to go 🙂
I’m chuckling to myself a little ruefully because i’m almost decided to postpone my departure till after Easter – so yes, it looks as though our time together looking through the windows of Paradise still has a way to go 🙂
In practical terms, ie the weather, after Easter is a much kinder time to return, and if all is well with you there, why hurry?
Exactly. I need to talk to the landlady about it – I don’t know why I’m putting that off!
Wow! Your virtual Awards cabinet is overflowing, Meredith – and all of them so very richly deserved.
I’m sure that your kind words of support and generous use of links are an inspiration to many bloggers. It’s always a delight to visit with you at TWLG.
Thanks for the link to East of Malaga. Much appreciated.
I hope people have the time to check out the links – some of them at least. I much prefer the way you and some others do it by making a couple of recommendations every week or month, or whatever. But that’s rehashing an old conversation, eh? and we’re both agreed it’s the introductions that make our blogging world go round! So happy to highlight East of Malaga among the influential blogs of 2012. 🙂
Hi Gene, congratulations on your awards…..so very well deserved!!! Thanks for passing it on to me.
Best wishes now you’re self-hosting!
Congratulations on all the well deserved awards. I thank you for including me in your “Sisterhood”. It is an honour.
Spreading the joy dear 🙂
Congratulations on all your Awards TWLG, and thank you for mentioning and nominating Our Adventure in Croatia for the Super Sweet Blogger Award, truly grateful of your mentioning us here in your blog!. I agree with you that the blogosphere enables us to meet, at least virtually, many fellow bloggers with whom we can share laughter, thoughts and feeling. Even though we may never meet in the “real world” we share our very human experiences of life. Thanks again and happy blogging!
You too – see you around 🙂
Congrats on all your well-deserved awards. I wish I had the time to read all of the ones you list. It truly is a window on the world – one that you can direct to your destinations of choice….
I know what you mean about finding the time to visit a whole slew of new blogs! I try to check out a few, at least, when I read nomination posts, but most often I find myself bookmarking the posts to catch up later – and yes, I seem to eventually work through most of them!
I’m usually exhausted after writing an awards post like this, so I hope you’re taking some time to rest and enjoy the day! They are all very well deserved. I also hope your moving chores are going smoothly and all will go well next month for you.
Exhausted? Totally pooped – and as blind as a bat, what with all that to-ing and fro-ing! I did indeed take the day off – went with Mo down to the south coast for the day – a bit of sunburn on the face and the smell of the tide turning on the rocks below us over lunch. Very relaxing.
I’m also feeling a little more relaxed because I’m toying with the idea of postponing my departure till after easter … I think that’s a better time to do it 🙂
I do enjoy your blog so much and so I’ve nominated you for the 2012 Blog of the Year Award! You’ve received it already, but you deserve it again!
Here’s where to go to check it out:
That’s so nice of you. Thank you ns, I’ll be right over.
Thank you very much my friend, I really I appreciate 🙂
I realised how much I enjoy the inspiration of your challenges when you ‘missed’ a few weeks ago – so thank you, again Jake 🙂
Thanks SO much for the Versatile Blogger Award, I really am honored to be in such great company — (I follow Third Eye Mom, too!!) — and am really grateful that you found http://heifer12x12.com worthy of your attention! Am in Ecuador right now, finishing my 12th month of travel, and it came as a great surprise to me, in the Alta Sierra with the Quechua people …
how lovely!!! THANKS!!!
It must be strange, contemplating the end of your ‘assignment’. Best wishes and good luck for the future 🙂
Congratulations on your fantastic award line up. It is so well deserved, and reading your introduction into the award post, one can easily see how the sweet award is so appropriate for you. Wear them all well!
Ok – sweet it is Emily! Thanks for all your support 🙂
Congratulations and best wishes for all your awards! Nice going 🙂
Thank you Meg, I appreciate your warm comment 🙂
twlg certainly deserves all these nominations, you are a wonderful communicator and take us on superb journeys around sri lanka and to venice of course 🙂 most of all i enjoy your voice, your way of thinking, (which makes me think) and your attention to detail in your photography … i will never forget the amazing collection of images you gathered for the Colour challenge … and thanks so much for your great kindness in mentioning dadirridreaming for an award, it is a cheering boon to see the blog mentioned somewhere … a reminder to keep writing and publishing even when life is doing crazy little squiggles that mean things are transforming again … as they are with you dear meredith … catch you in australia one day! christine xx ps. glad you awarded elladee too 🙂 and i will take time to follow up some of your other favourites …
I’m so flattered and overwhelmed by your kind words I’ll just have to pass over them – you know how it is!
I wish I had thought to add a link to Heartfelt Images too – even though you don’t post there as much as I’d like you to (!!!! 🙂 ) – visiting your blogs is always one of my reading highlights – so It is my pleasure to promote the great work you do, especially with the birds.
I hope you get a chance to check out some of the others you don’t already know – like EllaDee I delight in making the circles grow 🙂
Congratulations Meredith for all the accolades coming your way. You and your wonderful TWLG deserve all.
I humbly accept the nomination of beautiful blog award for http://sreeniviews.wordpress.com
I hope will continue to contribute to the bloggosphere in the same vein.
Thanks and regards.
Your beautiful explorations of a theme are always a delight Srini 🙂
My humble regards Meredith.
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Awesome!! Congratulations TWG!
I hope you’ll take up your Award Amy?
Congratulations my friend. You are indeed one of the bloggers I admire and find inspiration from. Thanks for sharing this award. Truly a joy and honor. An exciting present for the holidays. Merry Christmas…..
You’re very welcome, and congratulations to you 🙂
Wow you! Woo hoo. I’m off to check some of your suggested sites.
Oh good – that’s the only reason I labour through the response posts – to recommend new (hopefully) blogs to others 🙂
thank you for the inspiration by your comments!
It’s my pleasure 🙂
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Oh Wanderlust, sending you huge e-hugs! I love this post, your deluge of awards are well-deserved for you are a wonderful part of this WordPress community. Love the ‘window into another world’ that you offer me, and am thrilled you nominated WMB for 2012 Blog of the Year. xxx Ailsa
Thank you dear – and the same here about you, especially now you help open up hundreds of other worlds each week when we go visiting other challengers!
After so many days fighting against the technical elements, I am back again!!! I have to say it has been a though time, but everything is over and out (Hope!!!).
I really love your post!!! I enjoy very much the nice way you have to present your awards…And to thank people…
Your blog is full of quality, of imagination, of illusion, of love…I am sure you can talk about life and about cooking with the same passion…And this is a gift!
I feel happy, proud and flattered when I read your nice words about me and my blog…
Thanks a lot for the nomination!!!
A big hug!
I’m bursting with pride at the lovely things you say Illargia – thank you and well done yourself on your thoughtful and very beautiful blog. 🙂
You had me at the passionfruit creme brulé, pav and anzac biscuits… that’s a seriously good list.
Love today’s photos too, Congratulations on the award!
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Thank you my friend. That means a lot to me. Awards keeps me inspired and motivated, more if it comes from my blogger friends. Congratulations. Wishing you an amazing 2013!
Congratulation! It is very nice to meet you with all the question. More power and even greater successes of both in numbers and in essence.
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I had conversation with a girlfriend of mine, who is somewhat new at blogging, and I talked about how supportive and engaging the blogging community could be! Very nice post, and well said:)
2012 was a year of blessings and friendship. 2013 is a year of new, exciting inspirations. In both, you are there my friend. Congratulations! Thanks for sharing these awards generously.