Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Clearing the Slate (a bit).

I have been a bad blogger of late.  I have been honoured with three awards.  I cherished them, and was really, really chuffed to receive them.  And haven't responded to them.

So, here I go.

The lovely Father Dragon bestowed not one but two awards.  The first was this one.

The SuperSweet Bloggers award.


Naturally it comes with conditions.  Some of which are easy, and some are beyond me.

Answer the following questions and Nominate Five Bloggers.
Questions:
1. Cookies or Cake?   Some cake, rarely.  My sweet tooth is largely savoury..
2. Chocolate or Vanilla?   Either.  The real stuff in both cases..  And the chocolate has to be dark.
3. Favorite Sweet Treat?   Good chocolate - but I would pass it up for smoked almonds, good olives, and many cheeses.
4. When do you crave sweet things the most?   When they aren't available.
5. Sweet nickname?   None.


I am totally unable to choose bloggers to single out for this award.  I don't think it is laziness.  So many of you sweeten my world.  With laughter, with your life philosophy, with beauty.


So, as usual, I am NOT going to select anyone.  If you would like to play, please take this award and run with it.

I will show you the other award the lovely dragon gave me towards the end of this post.


The next award came from Carol in Cairns.  The Sunshine Award.  And sunshine is something that she sees a lot of, and shares generously.


Naturally, it too comes with conditions.  Some of which I can manage, some of which are (of course) beyond me.

The first is to share eleven things about myself.

I am very, very bad tempered and fight to keep it under control (mostly successfully).
I come from a maths/science oriented family and find both challenging.  My mother and my youngest brother used to fight about who did my physics homework.  I was happy to let them.
I was in my thirties before I realised that not having the maths/science gene didn't mean I was stupid.
I am an introvert.
In my next life I would like to be a cat - preferably one of my own to ensure that I am suitably indulged.
The smaller portion and I have been together for over thirty five years now - I would have got less than that if I had murdered him early.
And that is more than enough about someone who is really very ordinary and not interesting at all.

Then Carol poses eleven (naturally) questions to answer.

1.  What do you love about blogging?  The exposure to different people, from different places, and the richness they add to my world.


2. Who is the most interesting person you have met in real life and why?  I don't think there is a most interesting person.  I find people fascinating (though I don't always like them).  Quirky is always good. 

3. Who is your favourite author and can you recommend one thing I should read of theirs?  Too many to count.  Barbara Kingsolver is one of them - and Prodigal Summer is one of my favourite books of hers.  Tove Jansson - The Summer Book.

4. Newspapers, radio or Breakfast TV?  Newspaper.

5. What is your favourite cake?  Probably chocolate.  But very rarely.

6. One thing you would still like to learn?  So many things.  I would love another language.  There is so much about so many things I don't know.  Fortunately I am still learning.

7. What was your first job?  Other than baby sitting and house cleaning?  Selling women's underwear in a Department Store.  They loved me, and wanted me to have a career there.  I didn't.

8. One place you would like to visit again before you die?  Antarctica.  Hands down.

9. Can you speak a language other than English?  Other than grumpy, no.

10. The first album you bought with your own money?  Quadrophenia by The Who.  I think.

11. What is your favourite flower?  Too many to count.  Probably whatever isn't blooming at the moment.

Then we get into the conditions I baulk at.  Single out bloggers to pass the award on to, and create eleven questions for them to answer.

Nope.  Can't/won't do it.  Any one of you who wants to play is more than welcome to take the award , and hopefully follow the rules better than I do.

Which does make me feel guilty.  I probably shouldn't ever get another award.  And your presence here is award enough.

Back to the second award given to me by Father Dragon, the Golden Scale Award.




It came with these words.


'The Golden Scale Award is not for the things you did, but for the things you'll be doing to be happy on daily basis. It's for the courage you promise to show when facing adversity. The determination you promise to have when standing for your dreams and for what you believe in. It's the wisdom of knowing life is sometimes way too difficult but overcoming those difficulties is the only way to grow into a better person and to learn something. We face our fears to find ourselves and our own worth.
There is no wisdom without experience, and knowledge is empty without wisdom. Accepting this award means you are willing to work hard to start working miracles in your own life. I want to make clear I am not suggesting you stop believing on a High Power. I believe too. I am just inviting you to take responsibility of your life, like I did, and release all your true potential.'



Such a challenge.  I am not, unlike the Dragon, a believer.  However, if anything, this makes the award even more important.  An acceptance of responsibility.  Always.  Not an easy path, but one I believe it.  And I will try, and when I fail (as I will) I will try again.  Thank you so very much Father Dragon. 


Thank you Father Dragon, and thank you Carol.  I am very grateful - and apologise for both my tardiness and my inability to follow the rules.



108 comments:

  1. Well done catching up on your awards, Sue, as really it can get too much. I mean, I turn on the computer to write, then find I've only answered comments… much worse if I had a thanks for award speech and process to go through too!

    Congrats, & joy :)

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    1. wordsfallfrommyeyes: It was very rude of me not to acknowledge the generosity of the donors. Mea culpa.

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  2. I am glad that you posted your awards, but I agree that the rules that come with them are onerous. But, Congratulations on the awards!!

    I believe that the rules optional,

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    1. Webster: I don't do rules well. Far too many rules are, or should be, optional. Minor rebellion?

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  3. EC ~ I wish I had thought of just breaking the rules ~ you can tell that I am a teacher can't you? I like that your family fought over who did your Physics homework. Congratulations on all the awards ~ you certainly deserve them.
    My best wishes for 2014.

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    1. Carol in Cairns: I have a huge respect for teachers. I think it is one of the most under appreciated jobs - and so necessary. I loved my family fighting over my physics homework too. It didn't increase my knowledge but DID increase my pleasure. I wandered off and read while they did it.

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    2. jenny_o: I was very happy to let them do it. I couldn't understand it, but it was a win/win as far as I was concerned.

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  4. Hmm...I've had similar awards bestowed and, like you and many others, now leave them on the table, so to speak.A sort of self-serve diner (Dinah?)
    But your answers, while not soul-stripping, do give us a little more knowledge of you. And, in its small way, is a good thing.
    The blogosphere does spin its crystal and spill light on so many of us...
    Good fortune to you and your readers, EC.

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    1. dinahmow: Thank you. And there are parts of my soul which should not be exposed. No soul stripping in public. A rule I will follow.

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  5. And that is more than enough about someone who is really very ordinary and not interesting at all. I think that this dog puts it far more eloquently than I could.

    One thing you said resonated with me - to learn another language. I never had the desire to learn another language, but then in my 40s was forced to after moving to a foreign land. So, one is never too old to begin, and if a reluctant idiot like me can learn, it should be a breeze for someone intelligent and motivated.

    I also like the idea of coming back as a cat - they are amazing animals. Although my wish was rather more base - to be Colin Firth's soap... yeah, I know, I need to get out more.

    Congratulations on the awards - I really like the last one. Although I probably could do with a little of the sweet award to counterbalance the snark. And I definitely need more sunshine.

    I can understand that sometimes blogging takes a back seat in life when there is so much else one needs to do.

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    1. Marie: No, I am not jesting at all about being essentially dull. But thank you.
      I wonder whether it was necessity which gave you the impetus to acquire the gift of another language? And you assuredly jest on the idiot front - or are just misinformed. Badly misinformed.

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    2. Well, I've never thought of you as dull at all. Intelligent, well-read, warm and caring come to mind. As do wry, observant, open and giving. But never dull (and I bore easily).

      Many expats (mostly Americans I have to say) get by in Sweden with never learning the language. Although they live in bigger cities where at least some people can communicate with them. Somehow I don't think that would work here "beyond the black stump", so perhaps a degree of necessity was involved if I wanted to immerse myself in my new homeland. It's also plain old nosiness as well - I couldn't bear to live in a place where I couldn't read the papers or understand written and spoken communication. I want to know everything and I don't want to do that through a middleman. And I don't want to live in an isolated little enclave of outsiders.

      Okay, maybe not an idiot. Perhaps a half-wit? That's what my maths teacher used to call me. I suppose you can empathise with that one.

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    3. Yeah, me again. Sorry about these days old, disjointed conversations, but I always remember something AFTER I press "Publish".

      I thought it might amuse you that my Swede got a great t-shirt from his youngest daughter at Christmas that said "You read my t-Shirt. That's enough social interaction for one day." She knows her introverted father SO well :-)

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    4. Marie: I LOVE that t-shirt. I would wear it, and so would the smaller portion. With immense pleasure.

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    5. Marie: I am more than usually brain dead this morning. In attempting to reply I have hit delete (your comment) twice. Fortunately averted. I am never sorry to see as many comments from you as you care to make. I am so with you on the nosiness front. Curiosity is a big, big part of me. Not to do anything with the information - I just like to know. And inconsequential snippets delight me often.

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    6. I'm glad I'm not the only one that has computer "blonde moments" in the morning :-)

      Yes, I thought you'd like that t-shirt. I am also an introvert, which surprises most people because I’m outgoing and friendly and, in fact, very far from shy, but I prefer one person and one conversation at a time.

      I fought this for years, always trying to be someone else. I made myself go to parties and functions; I tried to fix what I thought was “wrong” with me. It didn’t help that other people would press, “But you’re so good with people” as if being introverted meant living on the dark side. But I finally got it.

      Poor L-G on the other hand is quite socially awkward and he finds socialising a problem, even though he is warm, witty and lovely when you get past the defensive walls. The internet and email suits him rather than facing people, so yay for this form of communication.

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    7. Marie: One on one for me too. And while I am shy, I present (I think) reasonably. And what is it with the perception that introverted means not friendly? I suppose it could, but not in any of the introverts I know...

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    8. I think society portrays introverts as complete weirdos, because vwe are a minority (I think I read somewhere we constitute 25% of the population). The majority always fear what they can't understand or control.

      But I'm happy where I'm at these days. This is also one of the blessings of being older. Along with the wrinkles comes a “What you see is what you get” self-acceptance, or perhaps for introverts it’s, “Who you don’t see is what you get”. It is a great relief to stop trying to be who you’re not. And I truly treasure the friends I have and try to nurture those friendships.

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    9. Marie: I thought there were more of us than that. And yes, on the gaining more comfort about who/what I am. I wouldn't be a teenager again (all that anxt) for anyone. Despite the better, and better behaved body.

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  6. happy new year!
    i used to love it when people bestowed those awards on me and i still love to read them :)

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    1. kylie: And a happy new year to you too. Awards are nice, but always feel misplaced.

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  7. What? You speak 'grumpy' too? Nice to add some flesh to the bones. Best wishes for 2014.

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    1. J Cosmo Newbery: Sometimes I think that grumpy is my 'first' language. I am certainly fluent in it.

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    2. This a.m., that's all I can speak---grumpy. My good English has vanished to the far recesses of my brain.

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    3. Strayer: Grumpy is a rich and varied language. Claim it for your (our) own.

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  8. These are well deserved EC. I've noticed a few awards making the rounds again, like you I accept them, then forget to pass them on, usually because I don't know who to pass them to.

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    1. River: It is an impossible decision isn't it?

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    1. Bob Bushell: And a very happy new year to you too. With lots and lots more birds in your sights.

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  10. Congratulations and I too think you deserve those awards. Also, like you, I could not choose who to pass an award on to (not that I'm ever likely to receive an award as I have few followers). I was very interested though in all your relevations about yourself and from those remarks I see even more that you are my kind of folk. Hope 2014 has begun well for you.

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    1. Mimsie: I am home alone at the moment so the new year has been (after New Year's Eve) blissfully quiet. Much reading, very little productivity. And no, no wild celebrations, I was volunteering. Which was busy. Very busy.

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  11. A Happy new Year , lovely friend :). Kissessssssss.

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    1. petronela: Thank you - and to you. And your baking looked incredible. Even for my usually savoury tastes...

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  12. Very well-deserved awards, EC! Good for you in not picking out bloggers, as I would have been SUPER PISSED if you hadn't named me.

    Happy, happy new year to you and the smaller portion!

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    1. Ms. CrankyPants: And now you have two awards to play with. Go on, I dare you. Double dare even...

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  13. I don't do these things, but I was amused at some of your answers.

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  14. Lovely awards and well deserved.

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    1. Delores: Thank you. They are lovely awards, and lovely gestures from the bloggers involved.

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  15. It was nice to get to know you a little better through your answers, Sue. I had to laugh at your comment on your 35 year relationship..

    I hope this new year be good to you and yours.

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    1. Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe: I am sure that some days he feels the same. More than half our lives...

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  16. I stopped responding to these awards long ago, since the people I would choose would usually end up putting a note on their blogs that they don't accept awards any more. I haven't gone that far, but I now accept them happily but don't ever choose others to pass it on to. Much too much like a chain letter.

    I enjoyed your answers, and I learned a few interesting tidbits about one of my favorite people! I have always been attracted to introverts, although I would never be accused of being one! :-)

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    1. DJan: I am fascinated by extroverts (well by everyone really), but couldn't wear their hats.

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  17. So, you do not always keep calm, but you do carry on. You did not mention your book reviews, that always inspire me.

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    1. Joanne Noragon: No, I don't always stay calm, despite my best intentions. Twice now I have fallen into 'blind' rage and have done and said things which came as a shock when the rage cleared. Frightening things. So my temper is kept leashed as far as I can.
      I am very glad to hear that you enjoy my bookish indulgences.

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  18. Happiest of New Year's to you! What a wonderful way to start this year. And I learned a few more things about you, too, oh shy one! Peace...

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    1. Linda: Thank you. A wonderful year to you and yours.

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  19. Replies
    1. Lisa (aka Mollie's mom): Thank you. The bestowers are wonderful people.

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  20. Congrats, Mizz EC! Now how about sharing some of that cheese and dark chocolate!

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    1. Cathy Oliffe-Webster: I will happily share the cheese and chocolate. And wine? Party time.

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  21. I agree ... having to choose favorites is not only difficult, but unreasonable. An award is an award ... meant for the person who receives it (you) and shouldn't have stipulations attached. I wouldn't take one of your awards because I think they should stay right where they are ... with you. You earned them by gaining the respect of the Dragon Father and Carol so they are yours to keep ... and I couldn't agree with them more. You are the perfect choice ... grumpy and all:) (Woudl you be willing to teach me Grumpy ... I am often, but I don't express it well). So now would be the time to express my appreciation to you for being such a faithful follower and a teacher par excellence. You have made me laugh (most of all), cry, ponder, wonder, contemplate and learn ... yes, I learn from you each time I come over and what could be more rewarding in life than learning something new. It makes you realize that you are still alive (which could often be a question when you get as old as I am). What a Joy it has been this past year ... I still want to figure out a way to get over to Australia if for no other reason than to give you a big Hug. Happy New Year my good, brillient (yes you are brillient even if you can't do math) warm but grumpy, suffering but strong, giving and kind friend. Let this be yet another challenging, in a good way, year.

    Andrea @ From The Sol

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    1. Andrea: Taking one, or both of the awards wouldn't take them away from me. It would merely spread the love, oh recalcitrant one.
      Grumpy comes naturally to me. Very naturally. Perhaps you could let your grump loose from time to time?
      I do love your comments and your affection - but feel very undeserving. Hugs.

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  22. Replies
    1. Grannie Annie: I shouldn't have taken so long though. Rudeness.

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  23. Congratulations, you handled the answers nicely!! Happy New Year--& would you please pass me the olives?

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    1. fishducky: I will share the olives, but you will have to be quick if you are to get any of the ones stuffed with fetta cheese. Very quick.

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  24. It's always nice to learn more about you. Love olives and cheeses, too. And Barbara Kingsolver's books. I need to reread Prodigal Summer - the very first of her books I read.

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    1. Lynn: I do love most of Barbara Kingsolver's books. Her essays are wonderful too. Try and track down Tove Jansson's The Summer Book. I would be very interested to hear what you think of it.

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  25. I don't like awards or prizes with rules, it makes them a tad pointless to me - here's a gift of appreciation - now spend some time working for it. I agree with DJan that they can feel like chain letters if you're not careful - you have handled them just as I would, and it is interesting to get a little more info on you, you international woman of mystery you *laughs. A knicker seller, who's have thought it? *laughs some more. On the subject of laughing I actually spat tea in the act reading your words on the 35 years you and the smaller portion have been together. Well played, and an excellent example of why such awards should exist and be handed to one such as yourself. Taking into account your time spent with those who need help more than ever at this time of year, the fact you manage to answer every comment on here speaks volumes of the star that you are. Shine on dear, shine on. x

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    1. All Consuming: I have a long arranged alibi for the time when the smaller portion is found deceased in unexpected circumstances. I wasn't every a Scout (or a Guide) but a bit of preparation doesn't go astray. I hope you got yourself another cup of tea. And didn't spatter the first on anything too precious.

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  26. I will share my overly abundant sweet tooth with you. :)
    We both speak grumpy...what a coincidence!
    Rules are made to be ignored and broken, in my opinion. I loved finding out these little tidbits about yourself. Hugs!

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    1. River Fairchild: Grumparians? There are a lot of us about, though some travel more incognito than I can manage. Hugs right back to you.

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    1. Letting the Words Escape: It is an amazing challenge isn't it? I hope I am up to it.

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  28. Nice to get to know you better. It's quite extraordinary just how similar we are.

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    1. Wendy: It is one of the wonders of the blogosphere that it brings like minded people together. People we would never meet any other way.

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  29. I would never guess that you were bad tempered. I used the expression "hiss and spit" the other day, and credited you as "this nice person who is my blog buddy." Thanks for sharing some interesting stuff!

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    1. Riot Kitty: I am vilely bad tempered. I have frightened myself with it twice now and keep it under control as much as I can. Think discovering yourself three rooms away from where you last have conscious memory pushing a knife into someones belly. Fortunately I had dropped the carving knife and picked up a bread and butter knife - but I have no memory of doing it. He thought it was funny (the smaller portion), I didn't and don't. And I love that hiss and spit has spread.

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    2. I know exactly what you mean.

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    3. All Consuming: A bit of a worry isn't it?

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  30. It is lovely to read this and get to know a little more about you EC, and I can so relate.
    Although, throughout the year, one can easily glean your warmth, intelligence and humour from your posts.
    Your blog is like a tonic for me.
    And, that's from a grump who can't stand (and refuses to watch) breakfast TV, with their asinine comments and forced smiles... at five am! ;)

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    1. Vicki: Breakfast TV? Not unless my aim of the day is nausea and anger. Though mind you, I am not a fan of much TV. Thank you for your kindess. Much appreciated.

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  31. Happy New Year (and please hereby accept the Award of "The Blogger Who Best Declines To Comply With The Conditions Of Awarded Awards Award")

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    1. Andrew Maclaren-Scott: Now that is an award I am happy to accept. Thank you. No conditions attached to it either. Bliss.

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  32. Your awards are richly deserved and I enjoyed very much getting to know a little bit more about you. I would say you are a very interesting person, I would underline the word 'very' if I knew how ;) I am so glad to know you and have enjoyed visiting through 2013. Looking forward to many more visits in 2014. Happy New Year!!!

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    1. DeniseinVA: I am going to disagree with you. I could excell on Mastermind with my special subject being my own dullness. But thank you.

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  33. Awards or not, we all know what an intelligent and caring person you are. I suspect that like me, most of your followers give a little anticipatory "hoo-rah" when they see that you have put up a new post.

    from (often-grumpy) Alexia :)

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    1. Alexia: Thank you for being a glutton for punishment.

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  34. Your very presence in the Blogger World is an award for all readers. Your photos and your unfailing views always keep me coming back.

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    1. Susan Kane: What a lovely thing to say. Thank you.

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  35. Well done you! Hope your new year is off to a good start.

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    1. ladyfi: It is thank you. Your beautiful images of this morning tell me that yours is as well.

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  36. You absolutely deserve a Sunshine award, milady. And happy new year, EC!

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    1. John Wiswell: Thank you so much. I often feel much more like a black beast than either sweet or full of sunshine. Happy New Year to you too. Happy, productive new year.

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  37. Awards deservedly deserved! :)

    Rules? What are rules? Some we follow; some we don't; some are worth following; others are not. Do as you see fit; and what you see and do is fitting; and if I continue I will surely get myself into a muddle, if I've not done so already!

    I'll cease and desist now...but you know what I mean, EC! ;)

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    1. Lee: Thank you. I do feel a bit guilty about being a rule unto myself. It is a habit I criticise in others, albeit usually about more life and death issues like drink driving, where some believe that rules are for other people.
      Just the same, I do know (and often) agree with what you mean.

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  38. Nice, nice, nice. This is one of the things I like about blogging, we teach, we share, we recognise each other's worth. You've been given these because of what you do for others via blogging!

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    1. Guyana-Gyal: There is so much to see, to learn, to share isn't there? And I am grateful each and every day.

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  39. Dearest,
    you deserve every single award. I give you a special one for your "compassion." I love that about you!

    About coming back as a cat....

    Shall we be cats together and sunbathe on the hot cement in Jamaica purring together?

    Xxxx LOVE to you.

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    1. My Inner Chick: Coming back as an indulged house cat sounds bliss. And enjoying the sun sounds pretty good too. Its a date. Hugs.

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  40. Sometimes following the rules is over-rated! And with all this talk of cake? i might need to raid the last of the left over holiday sweets... i believe i have enough of a sweet tooth for the both of us!

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    1. daisyfae: Would you believe I had have one small piece of cake - to keep visitors company. And there is rather a lot left. Mind you, my savoury tooth ate too much. Way too much.

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  41. All well-deserved awards for you, EC :)

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    1. Jayne: I think they could be given to almost everyone in the blogosphere. I have found it such a rich and supportive place. And educational, beautiful and funny too.

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  42. Interesting and upbeat blog I ran across ad DJans . I enjoyed perusing very much...:)

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    1. troutbirder: Welcome and thank you. DJan is a pocket dynamo isn't she? Wonderful.

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  43. Gidday Sue,

    Ah yes and hearty congratulations on being bestowed with those awards. I do find them rather a dilemma. In fact, just the links and all the rules and the passing onto others, is quite the challenge. Besides, rules are made to be broken. Like you, I struggle to figure out who to pass on the awards to.

    Having said that, you are a most worthy recipient. You embrace the ideals of a sharing, caring blogging community. I'm grateful to you, my dear friend.

    Here's to 2014.

    Gary :)

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    1. klahanie: Is there an award which you have not been given? I doubt it, and your care and concern for everyone (except yourself) is inspirational. Have a wonderful, wonderful weekend.

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  44. My indulged house cats knocked my camera off the top of the frig this a.m. So mad at them at the moment, not sure my camera works anymore, very sad. Hoping the batteries are just dislodged. Darn pampered cats, am thinking of revenges like not pampering them for some time, but that probably won't happen. Have been thinking of your antarctic expedition as I watched the drama of the ship caught in the ice unfold, while thinking of you and your voyage, retracing the steps of Shackleton. Sure was a far cry though, with them tweeting and youtubing every moment.

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    1. Strayer: My indulged house cats are in toilet town at the moment too. Largely because of their insistence that 4.30 is a suitable time to rise. Enforced with yowl and claw. I am up now, and they have gone back to bed. I hope your camera survives.
      I have been watching the stuck in ice drama with interest too (of course). Interest and a bit of jealousy.

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  45. EC, your conversation with Marie about being an introvert had me nodding in agreement. I read a definition of introvert/extrovert that seems right to me: An introvert recharges alone; an extrovert recharges by being with others. I'm definitely the former, but I do enjoy being with others - it's just that it wears out my batteries, and to get my energy back, I MUST spend time alone. People do tend to think if you enjoy company you're automatically an extrovert :)

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    1. jenny_o: And I need that time on my own to recharge into a (less) grumpy being. If I am forced to be with people all of the time, my psycho bitch from hell rears her head. And snarls. It does seem to be common misconception though.

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  46. Making an admission that you are my most favoured blogger may put me offside with other favoured bloggers, so i'll keep it as a secret you and I only know.
    BTW: our puddytat is a tabby-tortoiseshell female with white paws and chest regd named, Minnie, Misc-Alley, nee feral.

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    1. Vest: What a lovely thing to say - though I suspect you say it to many of us.
      Do you have pictures of the feline tyrant (because they all are) who lives with you?

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  47. Will get my son to take photo... hopefully.

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