You Are My Sunshine

It makes my day when I receive a nomination for an award.  It’s even better when I discover it comes from another kiwi blog.  I have only been following this blog for a short time, and shamefully hadn’t even  realised that it is written by a fellow kiwi.  I love the fact that there is another kiwi, passionate as I am, about mental health… and is writing about it.

D.J. Halswell from A Mid-Life Adventure has nominated me for the Sunshine Award.

Here are the Sunshine Award’s simple rules:

  • Post the Sunshine Award logo
  • Then nominate 10 fellow bloggers you feel are worthy of this award
  • Announce their nomination on their blog
  • Plus, link a ping-back to the nominator’s blog

Questions for all nominees:

Favourite colour?Green… any green.

Favourite animal? I don’t have my own pet at present but my canine nephew Duncan is a favourite as are his feline siblings Sally and Harry. My beagle friend, Poppy is also a firm favourite even though she is on the other side of the planet.

Oh, were we talking favourite kind of animal?  If we were, then it’s a bear.  Unfortunately bears have never got as far as New Zealand.

Favourite number?  I don’t do numbers.  Any number is just fine with me.

Favourite non-alcoholic drink?Freshly squeezed orange juice (with bits, pulp or whatever you like to call it).

Favourite alcoholic drink?I don’t drink a lot these days, but when I do it is dry white wine.

Facebook or Twitter? 

  • Twitter: @CateReddell   I admit I don’t do much on Twitter, but I’m there…
  • Facebook: Infinite Sadness or what?  I’m currently debating how much longer I’m staying there.  My purpose for starting a page was to spread the word on my blog, and that just isn’t really happening due to Facebook’s reluctance to share posts (at no cost).

My Passions?Writing, reading, spending time with my two-year old niece and her teenage brothers,  life where judgement of others does not have a place.  I’m also passionate in my dislike of reality television.  I simply don’t get what is so entertaining.  Why can’t we have real, quality television instead?  Or better still, why not just turn it off?

Giving or Receiving Gifts? Both are rewarding!  Receiving gifts can be hard sometimes because I find myself wondering about the motives behind the gift.  But I love giving gifts, especially those which are for no other reason than because I could.

And my 10 nominees are…

Firstly let me acknowledge that there are a lot of bloggers who don’t want to accept awards, for a variety of reasons.  If you are one of those, and I have nominated you, please accept my apologies and don’t feel under any pressure to participate in this award.  Just know that I think your blog is great… and then carry on with your day.

With that said, my nominations ( in no order) are:

Claudia at Summer Solstice Musings

Jayne and Chas at THE SUNRISE GOAL

Jennifer at Chopping Potatoes

PTSD And Beyond (particularly for her post We Are Not All the Same)

Sid at Dad Knows

Natalya and Anya from Finding Health After Illness

Kina at Human In Recovery

Come November

A Wilderness Love Story

And yes, the perfectionists will notice that are nine blogs listed when I was meant to nominate 10.  Just sit back and breathe for a moment.  It will feel okay soon.  It’s always good to be able to just sit with imperfect things (a shortened list too)and break a few rules. 🙂

And to finish, just because I can…

“I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.” 

― Robert A. Heinlein

Just One More

The Courageous Confessionals Award

I said a few days ago that I had just one more award to mention and that is the Courageous Confessionals Award  which my friend Kina of Human In Recovery has presented me.

Kina created this award a while ago to honour the kinds of blogs she was reading, which offered a variety of styles and content, and spoke to her at a heart and soul level, those where the authors are taking a huge risk by sharing “their rawest, deepest, darkest, and most painful struggles and allowing the rest of us a chance to see what lies beneath.  These are courageous people who are basically confessing their truest sense of self, whatever that means for them”.

To be included in those who have received this award is a great honour.  Since I published my book three years ago, and my story became pretty much public knowledge, I have somehow tended to put aside the fact that what I share in my writing is pretty personal.  It just is, for me and while there are obviously things I don’t share, particularly to protect other people, I strongly believe that being open and honest is my way of contributing towards getting mental illness spoken about in a more open way.  It’s not right for everyone and I completely respect, that but it is right for me.

There are two pictures which go with this award, and I love them both so you get to see them both.  There are also no requirements of things I must do or say.  I like these ones. 😉


Thank you so much Kina for firstly creating this wonderful award and for considering me worthy of it.  Your recognition of why efforts to be open and honest, with a purpose, make it worthwhile.  Thanks.

One final note, that when I first read Kina’s post of my award, I mis-read the title of the award as the Confessional Blog Award.  I thought, that’s funny that Kina has created an award just for Catholics.  That led onto but I’m not Catholic.  LOL.  At which point I thought for a moment that I was a completely fraudulent awardee (I often feel like a fraud, that’s just life for me)… until I read the title a second time.  The moral of the story?  Read it properly the first time.

“Life, she realized, so often became a determined, relentless avoidance of pain-of one’s own, of other people’s. But sometimes pain had to be acknowledged and even touched so that one could move into it and through it and past it. Or else be destroyed by it.” 

―    Mary Balogh,    Simply Love

Belated Acknowledgments And Thanks

I have been very slow to acknowledge receipt of some wonderful awards from some awesome bloggers.  So before I go any further I need to say to those bloggers that I very much appreciate their recognition of my blog, and that my slowness to post about their awards is no reflection on how I feel.  Actually I am quite overwhelmed by the recognition.  So thank you.  Now let me tell you about them, in the order I received them.

Very Inspiring Blogger Award


Zen Lady  from Reflections on Life Thus Far nominated me for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award (I admit this was quite a while back).  I really like what she has to say on her blog so am honoured to receive her nomination.  Thank you.

Very Inspiring Blogger Award Rules

1.  Display the award logo on your blog.       

2.  Link back to the person who nominated you.     

3.  State 7 things about yourself.      √   (see below)

4.  Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them.      √   (see below)

5.  Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements.    

7 things about me

(apologies if I have told you these before)

1.  I’ll eat any chocolate, but prefer dark.  BUt I hate melted chocolate.  The texture is just all wrong for me.

2.  My first LP (it was in the 1970’s) was The Best of Abba.

3.  I failed French at school.

4.  My favourite paper at university was a Sociology course on writing life histories.  So far I’ve only done one and a half life histories.  The half is my father’s life history and is still waiting to be finished.

5.  The only pets I had as a child were two guinea pigs (called Patch and Badger).  A few weeks after I got them some teenagers from the church next door let them out of their cage and Patch and Badger were never seen again.  My parents refused me having any more pets.

6.  I hate brussel sprouts.

7.  I’m scared of Doctor Who.  I have been as long as I can remember that music.

Nominations for Very Inspiring Blogs

(in no particular order)

Miss Mental Health’s Rant Space 


Just Another Canadian Gurl

Being a Beautiful Mess


And yes you’re right.  That’s not 15.  But 15?

The Brilliant Blog Award

The next award that came my way is the The Brilliant Blog Award from Lulu of Sunny With a Chance Of Armageddon.  I have to admit that I was always an average student at school.  Brilliant was not a word any teacher would have used to describe me.  I did manage a couple of A+’s in my first year at university but still ‘brilliant’ wasn’t exactly me.  So for Lulu to include me in her inaugural presentation of this award put a huge smile on my face.  So thank you Lulu.  It is very much appreciated.

Da Rules

  1. Write an acceptance speech, linking back to the person who gave it to you.   
  2. Write 7 things you believe in.      √ (coming up shortly)
  3. Give the award to as many brilliant blogs as you would like to share the love.     √ (below)

7 things I believe in

The right of all people to be treated equally regardless of:




sexual orientation





And yes, that is seven.  It maybe not be exactly what Lulu meant but I suspect she’ll let me off.

Nominations for Brilliant Blogs

(still in no particular order)

Empathy 2012: wake up – change yourself – change the world

…But She’s Crazy

Sweet As NZ Girl

Rebel Youth NZ


Voices of Glass


Zen Lady Meditating from  Reflections on Life Thus Far has been very generous in also nominating me for the One Lovely Blog Award.  Big smiles.  Thank you so much.  May I be thought of as a lovely blog for a long time to come.

The rules are:

  • Display the award logo on your blog    
  • Link back to the person who nominated you    
  • State seven things about yourself      √   (I’m cheating.  See above)
  • Nominate fifteen other bloggers for this award and link to them        √   (coming up)
  • Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements       √


(in no particular order)

The Mirth of Despair

Pride in Madness

I Love Being Hypomanic


Summer Solstice Musings

NB. Again you’ll note that I can’t count to 15, but I did say above that I was only an average student.

Sunshine Award


Carolyn Hughes of The Hurt Healer has kindly awarded  me the Sunshine Award.  Carolyn’s blog is one of my favourites simply because I feel like I’ve been sitting in the warm sun when I have read her post.  They make me feel good.  So it is indeed a great honour to receive this award from her.  Thanks Carolyn.

This award is given and passed on to bloggers who positively and creatively inspire others in the blogosphere.’

The rules are:

  • Acknowledge the person who gave this award in a blog post.     
  • Do the Q&A below.      √   (see below)
  • Pass on the award to 10 deserving and inspiring bloggers, inform them and link to their blogs.  

Here’s the prescribed questions.  I think I have answered these before but it was a while ago so forgive me if I repeat myself.

1.Who is your favourite philosopher?            

Calvin & Hobbes

2. What is your favourite number?                  

I don’t have one.  Why should one number be better than another?

3. What is your favourite animal?      (you’ll note I can’t count again)

1.  Bears
2.  Elephants

4. What is your favourite time of day?       

Early mornings (when I can make it)

5. What are your Facebook and Twitter accounts?           

Facebook:    Infinite Sadness… or what?

Twitter:     #CateReddell

6. What is your favourite holiday?       

Canadian road trip 1990

7. What is your favourite physical activity?   

It makes me tired thinking about it.   Right now all I do is walk, usually to the car.

8. What is your favourite non-alcoholic drink?         (and again)

1.  Coffee (strong and never instant)       

2. Freshly squeezed orange juice                                   

9. What is your passion?    

Check out  The Passions Profile Challenge

10. What is your favourite flower?  

Daisies (I think that goes without saying, but I love pretty much all flowers).

 Nominations for Sunshine Blogs



Canadian Hiking Photography

Crazy In The Coconut

Sparkly Blue Butterfly Magical Fairy Dust Sprinkles Of Love

Human In Recovery

Reality Blog Award


The last award I need to acknowledge is the Reality Blog Award, given to me by Kevin from Voices of Glass.  Being real is something that is important to me.  To me it can be a fine line between too much and too little.  I hope I manage to balance that line and I very much appreciate Kevin’s acknowledgement that he sees my blog as rea.  Thanks Kevin.

The rules for this award are:

  • Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you      
  • Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and link back to them        
  • Answer the 5 questions presented        √ (coming right up)
  • Nominate up to 20 blogs for the award and notify them on their blogs      
  • Copy and paste the award on your blog somewhere         

The Questions (and Answers)

1.   If you could change one thing what would you change? 

Peace not hate  (I say hate rather than war because I believe that hate causes war)

2.   If you could repeat an age, what would it be?

I’d like to be a pre-schooler again because I’d like that little girl to learn that she matters.  I want someone to say to her “You is Kind, You is Smart, You is Important”.  Not just once, but over and over again until she believed it.

3.   What one thing really scares you?

Fire.  Even the flame of a match scares me.  The fear comes from witnessing an extremely traumatic event a long time ago.  The trauma might be dealt with but the fear remains.

4.  What is one dream you have not completed, and do you think you’ll be able to complete it?

I’ve got a couple of very special people who I need to meet in person.  And yes, one day it will happen.  I don’t know how, but that’s not important.  What is important is that it will happen.

5.  If you could be someone else for one day, who would it be?

This is a really hard one that I have had to put off posting this until I sorted this out.  So many options, but only one choice.  I think I’m going to have to pass.  I know that’s terribly slack but…

Nominations for Real Blogs


Soul Destruction – London Call Girl Diary & Book

Come November

Reflections on Life Thus Far


Tracie Louise Photography

And finally I have one more award to tell you about that I just got yesterday.  But as this is already so long, I’ll hold off and tell you about it soon.  Thanks for bearing with me. 🙂

“The applause was so loud and insistent that I had to respond with several encores. I was numb with happiness, when it was over, I knew that this alone must be my life and my world.” 

―    Leni Riefenstahl

Am I A Strong Person?

Three people have now nominated me for a Strong Person Award.  What’s more, they are people whose opinion I appreciate, so I need to stop and listen.   First, Halfway Between The Gutter And The Stars, then Carla from Seasons Change, And So Have I, and then Sharon from Day in the life of a Busy Gal… have nominated me.  I very much appreciate the nominations, so thank you ladies.

The thing is that I struggle to see myself as strong.  Today I have been stressing out over something a very good friend said and have felt as weak as a wet lettuce leaf.  I’ve tried to be strong when it has been necessary but then when I am back on my own I feel more like a complete wreck.  Not strong at all.

It’s interesting because I know that how I see myself is different from how others see me.  I’ve always felt like the fraud, just waiting to be discovered.  I’ve always been sure that if people really saw the ‘real’ me then they would run and hide.  I’ve just spent forty something years waiting for the bubble to burst.  Well sometimes it has, but other times I’ve just been convinced that everyone else around me has it wrong.  They must have.  Surely, I’m not strong like they say.

I’m just in the beginning stages of learning to trust another voice.  Not the one inside me who is constantly knocking me down.  If I can start to believe in my own strength, then maybe I can go places.  Exciting places.  Places I never dreamt possible because I was so convinced that those voices in my head were right.  It makes me start to realise the truth in the saying that from a tiny seed, grows a mighty tree.  I also realise that if we tell each other what we see, that we see a strong person, that might just be what that person needs to start to believe.

Earlier today I posted this picture on my Facebook Timeline:

Image credit: FB – Woman 2 Woman

At the time I saw it (and liked it) I didn’t realise it would be relevant to this post and the Strong Person Award.  I think mountains begin to move when we start to realise the stores of strength within ourselves.  And hopefully the Chinese won’t mind me saying this but I’m sure that when sleeping men wake (and realise their strength) then mountains will move too.

Enough of that, there are rules to follow:

1. Make sure to add in the text (below) and image (above) to spread the love and add how little or how much you want!

You heard me right! You are not weak, you are strong. You are not a failure, you are a fighter! This goes out to all mentalists. And it’s a gift from The Quiet Borderline to you all – Please spread the love. Mental health is not something to be sneered at and it deserves much more respect. Stop the stigmatising.

2. Name your diagnoses – Stand loud and proud! You can tell us a little about them also if you’d like. How you’re affected by these diagnoses and how you are fighting your way out of them.

3. Add a photo of yourself, or some abstract picture that represents you, anything you like!

4. Send this on to as many, yes, as many, people that you like. It can be five, ten, fifty.

My diagnoses?  Standing loud and proud is not a problem and I readily admit that right now I have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and I think I still have ED-NOS (Eating Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified), but no one has bothered to comment on that recently.

But I am not my diagnosis.  I am me, and the diagnosis just goes a little way to explaining a few difficulties I face.  I have a therapist who doesn’t treat me for these diagnoses.  He treats me, Cate Reddell, no labels attached.  And actually I love that.  I’m not ashamed of my labels but they are only a small part of what makes me a strong person.

As for passing this on, I happily pass it on to all the bloggers I follow as I believe that each one of them, while at different stages of different journeys, is strong.  I’m going to hold off and reserve the right to name individuals later.

And in the words of one of my favourite bears:

“If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together… there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we’re apart… I’ll always be with you.” 

―    Winnie The Pooh, A.A. Milne

‘Honorary Status’ Brotherhood

I have two brothers who are both very special to me.  We don’t always see eye to eye, but they’re my big brothers and pretty much, they’ve always been there when I needed them.  Right from when I requested they not attend my fifth birthday party.  I think the reason was something to do with me not thinking they mattered as much as my friends, and room around the table and for once I got my own way.  Now I know better.  Brothers matter greatly.

One of my brothers has been amazing with his financial help over some very difficult years, and the other has been of more practical help (but he’s still welcome to give me his money anytime! And yes, that is a hint :-))  He’s the one to keep arriving with the trailer when I was shifting houses, and do all the heavy lifting.  Because he now lives nearby he is the one I get the hugs from, when I need them.  Well, when I can go and get them anyway.  They are both important to me, and so when I received word of this Award, I thought of my own kin first.

Kevin of Voices of the Glass has very kindly bestowed upon me  A Brotherhood of World Bloggers Award ‘Honorary Status’.  Being a part of a Brotherhood is a significant honour in my mind.

This Award has no rules, and is just mine to have and appreciate.  It is very much appreciated. My blogger brothers are important to me and so I am greatly honoured to receive this Award.  Thank you Kevin. 🙂

I’m leaving you with this song for each one of my blogger brothers.  I enjoy the unique perspective that you bring to what seems a very female-dominated part of the blogosphere.  It’s always great to have another way of looking at things.

Seven Plus Seven

Image credit:

It’s time to celebrate!  This week I have been fortunate enough to receive two Awards, for which I am very grateful.  Kevin from Voices of Glass kindly nominated me for the ‘Seven things about me’ Award and Kathy from BipolarandBreastless nominated me for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award.  Wow!  I am very lucky to be recognised by two such fine friends and bloggers.  A huge thank you to both Kevin and Kathy. 🙂






The rules of both Awards are largely the same, so I won’t repeat myself.  This is what I have to do for each:

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you.
  • Share seven things about you.  (so for two Awards I guess that means 14)
  • Nominate other bloggers you think deserve the award, and post on their blog to let them know they have been nominated

So… 14 things about me

(I’m not sure that there are 14 interesting things that I haven’t already told you but we’ll see how we go).

1.  I love vegetarian food.  I do eat meat occasionally but would be happy without it.

2.  My most precious possession is a gold ring made from a gold cufflink that my mother gave to my father when they were married. It is inscribed with Dad’s initials.

3.  And my second most precious possession is my teddy bear.  Those of you who know me in real life, or have read my book, will already know this.

4.  I have two older brothers.  One I have talked about who lives nearby and grows mushrooms, the other is an economist and lives in Wellington, NZ (apparently he was the one that got the brains from the family gene pool).

5.  I have lived in 17 different houses in my life (actually one house I lived in twice so I guess that makes it 16).

6.  I can play the flute.  I also learnt classical guitar and piano although wouldn’t venture to play either in public.

7.  My 20’s were my best years to date (even though my big mental health crash happened when I was 28) but I’m always looking to improve on that.

8.  I have been a bridesmaid three times and once a bride.  I always thought I’d like to be a ‘best man’ (just for the fun) but that has yet to happen.  But let me be clear, I’m not planning any trans gender change.

9.  I am seriously thinking about getting my first tattoo.  It was to be this week but this week has been a disaster and I thought it was best not to do something as permanent as a tattoo when my head was all over the place.

10.  The biggest sadness in my life is the argument I had with my father moments before he died.  We didn’t argue often so it was definitely out of the ordinary.  We both said things that hurt the other.  I think I’ve got to a point of forgiving myself but wish for just a few moments with him to say sorry and make sure he knows I love him.  I often still talk to him anyway so hopefully he knows.

11.  The happiest time of my life was in 1990 when I spent four months globe-trotting with two friends.  Oh, to do that again!

12.  I admit I can’t really be bothered with the Olympics.  I’ll take it or leave it.

13.  I am very passionate about people being treated fairly and am quite disturbed by the way the New Zealand Government is handling the rebuild process in Christchurch after the earthquakes.  For some reason buildings, churches and sports grounds come before people and that breaks my heart.

14.  One of the most useful books I ever read was How I Stayed Alive When My Brain Was Trying to Kill Me by Susan Rose Blauner.

Wow, I actually got to 14 and had a couple left up my sleeve.  You’ll just have to wait for those but meanwhile I hope you weren’t too bored.


For the Seven Things ABout Me Award I would like to nominate:


Frank at Shitegeist

Redheadcase’s Blog

Ruby at I Was Just Thinking. . .

As for The Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award I would like to do something a little different.  Obviously this Award is for female bloggers but I think there is occasion when perhaps an honorary award could be made to a man.  I don’t want to step on anyone’s toes and I certainly don’t want to break any rules created when the award started but I happen to know that one particular male blogger has expressed interest in becoming an honorary member of the Sisterhood.  Personally I think this would be a good thing and I’m also keen to stamp out any suggestion of sexism.  Therefore I would like to nominate for an honorary Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award to:

Kevin at Voices of Glass

It is important to state that if any members of the Sisterhood have strong objections to this then it might need to be recalled.  Also my talents are great, but not quite up to doctoring the Sisterhood image to show the honorary status, but I suspect Kevin is more than capable of doing this.

Meanwhile wouldn’t it be great if the male bloggers around set up their own similar Award?  There’s my challenge to you guys.  And my quote for today goes with that challenge:

“To remain indifferent to the challenges we face is indefensible. If the goal is noble, whether or not it is realized within our lifetime is largely irrelevant. What we must do therefore is to strive and persevere and never give up.” 

―    Dalai Lama XIV

Here Comes The Sun



Since my post Don’t Blame It On The Sunshine a few days ago, it has been raining non-stop here, and there has been no sign of any sun.  This morning it has dried off a little but still no sign of sun.  But wait!  Here it comes…Fibrofella has very kindly bestowed on me another Sunshine Award, for positively and creatively inspiring others in the blogosphere.  Thanks you Fibrofella.  This is exactly what I need today and I very much appreciate the Award.

I need to say that I think it is fantastic to see another man with fibromyalgia blogging.  The majority of fibro sufferers are women and so I imagine it makes it hard to get support as a man with fibro.  So I say the more blogging, the better.  Check out his blog for a uniquely male perspective on fibro.

Now, the rules for this Award again, are:

1.  If you are nominated, you must blog a post linking back to the person/blog that nominated you.

2. You must answer some questions, nominate ten fellow bloggers and link their blogs to the post!

3. You should comment on your nominees’ blogs to let them know you’ve nominated them.

I’ve done number one, but the questions are the same as what I answered the other day so I won’t repeat them.  And I have just nominated some blogs for this Award, so again I’m not going to repeat that.  I hope that is acceptable to Fibrofella.  If not, he might just have to set me some new questions.  🙂

So once again, thank you Fibrofella.  The sunshine is warming me up and that is just great.  And finally as one who hates talking about the weather, and just can’t see the point,  I am getting seriously concerned about how often the subject comes up in my posts.  Apologies.

“Don’t knock the weather. If it didn’t change once in a while, nine out of ten people couldn’t start a conversation.” 
―    Kim Hubbard

Don’t Blame It On The Sunshine

A little bit of extra sunshine floated in my window a few days back when Purple Law Lady from Fibromodem very kindly nominated me for a Sunshine Award. I’m not blaming her or the sunshine… actually I love it.  It’s still winter here so any extra sunshine is always welcome.  So an enormous thank you to PLL. 🙂

If you have fibromyalgia, or know someone who does her blog is a great blog to check out.  She has so much information there and is so enthusiastic in finding ways to manage fibro.  And hey, she’s from across the ditch, in Australia so we’re almost neighbours.

Here are the rules:

1.  If you are nominated, you must blog a post linking back to the person/blog that nominated you.

2. You must answer some questions, nominate ten fellow bloggers and link their blogs to the post!

3. You should comment on your nominees’ blogs to let them know you’ve nominated them.

So, here are the questions:

1. Who is your favourite philosopher?  In a previous post I named Calvin and Hobbes, because they are just the best.  But seeing I’ve named them before, today I’m going with Eleanor Roosevelt.  Now she might not be what you consider a philosopher to be, but she has some damn good words of wisdom.

2. What is your favourite number?  I don’t really have one but I’ll go for my birthday which is 11.

3.   What is your favourite animal?  Bears, any bears although I won’t be too keen to get up close.

4.    What are your Facebook and Twitter URLs? 



Feel free to join me at either. 🙂

5. What is your favourite time of the day?  Sunrise.  Love it.

6. What was your favourite vacation?  I think I’ve told you about my favourite trip through Canada years ago so this time I’m going with Lake Rotoiti.  It’s a small lake just out of Rotorua in the North Island of New Zealand.  Some friends own a bach (that’s kiwi for holiday home) up there and my ex and I often borrowed it.  It was fantastic.  Very basic and very tranquil, not to mention gorgeous surroundings and just a little way off the beaten track.  Unfortunately the friends were really friends of my ex, so he still gets to go but not me.  But hey, I have my life!

7. What is your favourite physical activity?  If I didn’t have fibro I’d say cycling, but needless to say my bike is sitting unloved in the garage. 😦

8. What is your favourite non-alcoholic drink? This changes but right now I’m addicted to iced coffee (without the cream) or frappes.

9. What is your favourite flower? I love daisies but actually I just love flowers.  In my dreams when I am rich (LOL) I’ll have lots of flowers inside and out.  The only flowers I don’t like is geraniums, because I can’t stand the smell.

10. What is your passion?  So I’m only allowed one?  I have lots, and some of them you can read in The Passions Profile Challenge posts.  I spent way too long not being passionate about anything, so I’m making up for lost time.

My ’10’ Blogger Nominees

(actually I’m not going to 10, and reserve the right to award more later):


I Was Just Thinking. . .

Seasons Change, and so have I

Pride in Madness


My Bipolar Bubble



An Ungrateful Cow? (Maybe that’s Unfair On The Cow)


I must appear to be so ungrateful because it has taken me so long to get to acknowledge the Awards I have been nominated for recently.  Actually I am very grateful, and honoured to be recognised in this way.  So hopefully I don’t actually resemble the cow.  I have little real excuse so I’m not even going to try, but I do want to say an enormous thank you to those who nominated me.  I do very much appreciate Awards when they come and my tardiness should not in anyway be seen as a reflection of my gratitude.

Firstly my good mate Kevin of Voices of Glass has very generously nominated me for two Awards in the past few weeks.  So thank you very much from both me and the cow.  The Awards are:

The Inspiration Award apparently comes with no rules.  I love Awards like that, but somewhere along the way someone made up some questions I should answer, so here goes:

1. If you were a Disney character, who would you be?  Minnie Mouse.  I like her clothes, although can’t quite see me in that outfit.

2. What was your 1st job?  Slicing bananas and washing pots at a catering company.

3. If you had to live in a so called “3rd world country”, which would it be?  I’d go to Haiti.  I’m sure it wouldn’t at all be pleasant, but I’ve seen Christchurch’s post-quake conditions and know enough to know that Haiti’s are so much worse.  Maybe I could do something to help.

4. Coen or Farrelly Brothers?  I’m going to go with Coen brothers on this, only because the movies The Farrelly’s come up with are just too ridiculous for words (for me anyway).  But I could be proven wrong, and I’m open to suggestion.

5. Favorite baby/child’s book?  I am very fond of A Bear Called Paddington by Michael Bond but when I was little I had a book of the Christian Christmas Nativity Story.  It was very special to me, not the least reason being that at around five years old I had carefully printed my name inside it.  Unfortunately I think it got left behind when I left my marriage (it was a fast removal of posessions so a few things didn’t make it).  I did try to get it back eventually, but by then it had been turfed.  I was very upset.

6. Favorite non-existent punishment (well, non-existent in “1st world countries”) for monsters who harm the defenseless?  This is a hard one and I’m been contemplating it for several days now.  I think I’ll go with stoning, basically because I very much subscribe to the principle of “let the one who’s never fallen throw the first stone”.  It won’t be me throwing the stones on that basis.

7. What’s your favorite thing to do that is not strictly legal?  I’m absolutely sure I’m not going to tell you.  😉

8. How many times would you call the cops on your non-native (I’m an immigration professional – the variety that bring people INTO the US, this complaint is not about their race or heritage, it’s about their lack of respect) neighbors playing mariachi music outside all night long because they don’t have to get up in the morning before you just started hucking stuff out the window at them?  Okay so I’m not in the US, and dare I say it, I don’t know what mariachi music is.  And while the person who came up with these questions might be an immigration professional, I just don’t see why this is a race issue (and yes, I still think this is a race issue by the fact that they are identified as non-native.  What’s more I wouldn’t be wasting my own stuff throwing it out the window at them.  I might however call Noise Control around midnight.

9. What’s an image that depicts how you feel right now?  This is one I posted on my Facebook page a few days back and actually, it is completely true.

Photo credit: Observing the Sounds of the World

10. What’s your favorite ridiculous video?  This is an oldy but a goody.  If you’ve never watched it, make sure you watch all the way to the end.


As for the Sunshine Award, I have to admit I wasn’t a little ray of sunshine the day I got this, so am not sure I fully deserve it.  Although the Award’s delivery did definitely perk me up, so I’m hanging on tight.)

So anyway, here are my answers….

  1. Favorite philosopher?  Can I have two?  Calvin and Hobbes.
  2. Favorite bad habit? Dark chocolate and strong coffee
  3. Age? 46 (but think I’m 28 and feel about 80)
  4. Favorite time of day? Mornings.  There’s not much better than a sunrise, especially when I see it rise out of the sea (a 10 minute drive away).
  5. Favorite time of year? Spring (I love the daffodils and my city is full of them in spring)
  6. Favorite dead celebrity? I don’t really go in for celebrities much.  Sorry, I just can’t choose.
  7. Favorite Christmas movie? Snoopy’s Christmas?  IDK, most Christmas movies are a bit much for me.
  8. Favorite vacation? A month spent travelling through Canada in 1990.  I just wish it had been longer.  One day I’m going back.  And I’m going to squeeze in another one a year later down to Stewart Island (the dot at the bottom of New Zealand).  That was a fantastic holiday, just not long enough.  It’s a great place to check out.
  9. Physical activity?  Going to bed. LOL  Fibro is keeping me from feeling too physical right now.  Give me time and I’ll be back on my feet.
  10. Favorite thing? Being with my 19 month old niece L and her two older brothers, J and T.  Love it!


Continuing right on, I was also fortunate enough to be nominated (and yes, this is the last one) by Dorothy of I Love Being Hypomanic for the new Daisy Award.  Daisies happen to be my favourite flower, so it extra nice to be nominated for this.  Even more so, I have to admit that while I have been following another of Dorothy’s blogs, Out of the Lens Photography and love it (except for the recent post on spiders – sorry Dorothy, I told you I couldn’t like it), I had no idea that she had this blog.  So two surprises in one day, an Award and another excellent blog to follow.  Thank you so much Dorothy.

The rules for this Award are:

* Thank the person who nominated you.

* Tell your readers 7 unusual things about yourself.

* Nominate some worthy bloggers.

I’m sorry but I really think I’ve given you enough crazy things about me for one day, so I’m going to bow out of seven unusual things.  If you have an objection to that, let me know…


Nominations for the Inspiration Award go to:

The labyrinth of my mind.

The Quiet Borderline

My Bipolar Life

Not Quite Lost

And nominations for the Sunshine Award go to:

The Mirth of Despair


The Bipolar Place

…But She’s Crazy

And nominations for the Daisy Award go to:

Redheadcase’s Blog

Day in the life of a Busy Girl

Human In Recovery

My Bipolar Bubble


“All my writing is about the recognition that there is no single reality. But the beauty of it is that you nevertheless go on, walking towards utopia, which may not exist, on a bridge which might end before you reach the other side.”
– Marguerite Young
An After-thought (added 15 July 2012)
It seems that calling myself an ‘An Ungrateful Cow’ means different things in different countries.  Communication across countries, even within the same language can be risky sometimes.  I understand that in some countries, at least, I was calling myself fat and I have yet to know what else it might have meant in other places.  What I was trying to say kiwi-style was that I was not a very nice person for being nominated for Awards yet taking so long to acknowledge them or pass them on.  I apologise fot the mis-understanding and also for any offence that I may have caused.

Award For… A Blog Heading For The Big Time (Hopefully!)

I am running a little behind in acknowledging Awards.  So here I go.  BPShielsey of The Bipolar Place very kindly nominated me for the Liebster Award.

I am embarassed to admit he did this several weeks ago, and by now he has probably forgotten.  But not me, firstly because I always love getting Awards.  It just takes me a while sometimes to get my act together.  But what really caught my eye is that this Award comes for the small fry amongst us.

“This award is given to blogs with less than 200 followers, as a way to
encourage them, as well as spread love around the community. It also shares
appreciation for fellow bloggers and the wonderful work they do.”

I love that.  When BPShielsey posted about getting the Award himself I loved that the post was entitled Awards For An Unloved Blog 😦  I have to admit that I have a fairly vivid imagination, along with a bad (according to psychiatrists) habit of animating the inanimate.  So I had this lovely image in my head of this poor little cartoon-like blog sitting in a corner with no friends (but one Liebster Award), and my heart strings have been suitably pulled to encourage you to rush over to his blog now and make friends… and let him feel that blogging community love.   Not simply because this image in my head is starting to bug me, but more importantly because his is a great blog and I particularly love the music.

But I do need to be entirely honest.  In terms of WordPress followers I have under 200, but my Facebook followers take me over the magic figure.  So do I have to give this back???  Please say no, because I love it.  And anyway right now it is so difficult to get any regular information from Pages on Facebook, that most of my followers there are not getting my posts anyway.  AHHHH!

Down to business.   The rules of this award are to thank the person who nominates you (check); link back to them (check); copy and paste the award logo (check); give 10 random facts about myself; and nominate other bloggers whom I would like to pass this award onto.

My 11 Random Facts:

1.  My favourite (really) soppy movie is When I Man Loves A Woman.  Ok, no more groans thank you.

2. The next movie I am heading to see is Ted.  Can’t wait, but it doesn’t start here until 11 July.

3. My favourite author is Janet Frame.  I especially recommend her three part auto-biography ‘An Autobiography’.

The Yogi Bear Show
The Yogi Bear Show (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

4. Winnie the Pooh or Paddington Bear?  This is a hard one, but Paddington beats Pooh by a slick of honey, or was that marmalade?  I’m also quite partial to Yogi Bear (the original).

5. I hate getting my hair cut.  I have to sit looking at myself in the mirror while some stranger asks me dumb questions about my children, my husband… and oh yes, my job.  All those things that I don’t have and survive quite okay without.  But the hairdresser treats me like I’m totally weird.  Oh that’s right, I am.

6. I once considered becoming a funeral director.  I could do without embalming of bodies but I like the idea of helping people say good bye to their loved ones.  I decided in the end that I would be playing with fate too much (with depression), and I really needed a more uplifting job.

7. My latest statement about myself (especially for the hairdresser above) is “I’m weird, but I’m saving up to become eccentric”.  I’d love to be an eccentric old lady (although not too soon!).

8. I hate gardening, but appreciate looking at gardens.  Just don’t want to have to do the work.

9. I love tiramisu.

10. The best meal I ever ate was seafood lasagna in Venice (a long time ago).  I guess the surroundings and the company helped, but the food and wine were delicious.

11. When I have spare time (which isn’t often) I like doing patchwork and quilting (by hand).  None of this using a sewing machine!  It’s been a while since I did any.

And now drum roll please… for nominations:

Daily Life With Fibromyalgia

…But She’s Crazy

Resonate Freedom

Pride in Madness

Out of the Lens Photography


“Never despise small beginnings, and don’t belittle your own accomplishments. Remember them and use them as inspiration as you go on to the next thing. When you venture outside your comfort zone, wherever the starting point may be, it’s kind of a big deal.” 

 ―    Chris Guillebeau