A Quick Thank You for Awards

Carol at Adjusting Your Focus has given me the compliment of awarding me with The Very Inspiring Blogger Award. I have already received this award and have responded in a previous post. If you want to learn seven random things about me, head on over here to read them. I do want to thank Carol for passing this award onto me and letting me know that she finds my words inspiring.

one-lovely-blogLast week I also received the One Lovely Blog Award from Amanda at Living and Travelling in Africa. This is an award that I have also previously received (you can read the post here). In accepting this award, I wrote seven unknown facts that my readers at that time did not know.

realityblogawardWhile on the subject of awards, I thought I would acknowledge another that has been sitting in my inbox for a while. Madoqua  and Scrapydo offered me the Reality blog award.  I have followed Madoqua for a while and always enjoy the posts she creates especially as she writes from a country I have never visited. As for Scrapydo, she is a fellow South African who has relocated to New Zealand and posts some beautiful photographs. In accepting this award, I am asked to answer a few questions:

If you could change something, what would you change?

I would change the existence of war. I believe everyone has the right to live their lives in a state of peace. It is upsetting that so many people, among them children, experience the stress and tension that is present in a war zone.

People also have the right to have their basic needs fulfilled: their need for shelter, food, clothing. There are so many people who live without – and so many who have more than they need. I would love to live in a world where everyone has what they need in order to live without the pain of hunger and homelessness.

If you could relive one day, what would it be?

It is difficult for me to choose just one day as there have been so many happy ones. If I could, I would like to have a day in which all my family members are together again for a family gathering – and that would include the members of my family who have passed away. This was something that happened often when I was growing up. What was so good was that both my dad and my mom’s siblings were at these parties – as well as both sets of grandparents. I often think of those days as they brought a lot of joy to us.

What is the one thing that really scares you?

I try not to dwell on that which scares me as that would render me inert. At different times of my life, different things have caused me fear – and I have worked towards eliminating them.

What one dream have you not completed yet and do you think you will be able to complete it?

My dream is to finish writing a story that I began a while ago. This I hope to complete once I find a routine that will give me the quiet in which to do it. Now that I am working closer to home this year, I am positive that I will be able to do so once I have reached the many deadlines at work that seem to be looming.

If you could be someone else for a day, who would you be?

I am happy with who I am – and would not want to change that. There are things I would like to experience though that, up to now, I have not had the opportunity or the means to do so.

I unfortunately do not have the time to nominate blogs for this award. I would prefer, instead, to spend the time that I do have writing posts of interest. I do thank those who have nominated me, though, for the compliment that they have given me.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2014

A Few Blog Awards

Over the past year or so, bloggers have given me some awards. Due to time constraints, I have not managed to acknowledge their nomination and pass it on. In the past I have spent many hours writing the posts in which I have answered questions and nominated other blogs. I have decided that I shall now acknowledge receiving these gestures of appreciation but I shall not pass them on.  I would rather spend the time I have to blog on writing or sharing photos.

field-of-flowers-awardMichelle at Book Chat has nominated me for a number of awards in the past year or so. (Thank you Michelle) The first is The Field of Flowers award. The award is meant to show appreciation and is sent to brighten one’s day (as a bouquet of flowers would). Now if there is any blogger you would like to send this bouquet of flowers to, go ahead and grab the button.

working-to-change-the-worldMichelle has awarded me with another compliment: The Working to Change the World Award. This award was created to acknowledge bloggers who are working to make a change in the world. Recipients of this Award work hard and sincerely to make the world a better place using their compassion, love and understanding. The question asked in accepting this award is what do I believe would change the world if everyone did it. My answer? Put others before yourself. If we thought of helping others first before looking after our own interests, I think the people in the world would be less self-centred and focused on finding wealth. To me the best example of one who lived like this was Mother Theresa – a woman who put others’ needs before those of her own.

dragons-loyalty-awardBulging Buttons has granted me with another award: The Dragon’s Loyalty Award. This award is for the loyal blogger who comments regularly. As you all know, I enjoy commenting on fellow bloggers’ space when I have the time to do so – part of what blogging is about, isn’t it? In accepting the compliment of this award I am asked to list seven interesting things about myself. Many of you know quite a bit about me so I have tried to think of little things you may not yet already know:

  1. Living in a country far from my land of birth, there are a few treats that I miss eating: the sticky sweetness of koeksusters, the saltiness of biltong, the fishy taste of anchovy paste, the crunchiness of Romany Creams, the tanginess of ripened guavas, and true South African boerewors.
  2. I enjoy watching super-hero movies. I love it when Marvel creates the next film whether it be about Spiderman, Wolverine, or the X-Men.
  3. Even though I live in a big city, I love spending time in more natural surroundings. I enjoy time spent away from modern architecture and much prefer the creation of the natural to man-made.
  4. I have picked up the crochet hook again after eight years of rest. I am now spending less time reading!
  5. I secretly wish for a personal chef as I enjoy eating a variety of foods but do not really like spending too much time in the kitchen.
  6. I tasted kale for the first time a few months ago and I loved it. Now every week, this vegetable finds its way into my shopping cart.
  7. Even though I do not go there often, I enjoy spending time at the beach. I like walking on the soft sand and watching the sun set in the horizon.

I have notifications of other awards in my inbox – those I will share with you in another post as I did not want this one to be too long!

I would love you to share one thing about yourself that we don’t know in the comments.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2014


WordPress Family Award

wordpress-family-awardSummer is moving on and I continue to clean out my comment box. Another award I have received in the past year has been the WordPress Family Award. This award acknowledges the bloggers who have had an impact on a blogger’s WordPress blogging  experience. I would like to thank Sonel at Sonel’s Corner and Scrapydo at Everything Crafty for passing this award on to me.

Each day that I blog, I come across posts that are interesting, photos that blow me away, and thoughts that make me think a little about this experience we call life. In nominating the following people for the WordPress Family Award I am thanking them, not only for the creativity of their posts, but also for the support they give me in my blogging. These are bloggers who have taken the time to encourage me, to give me that pat on the back, and whose gravatars I often see in my comments.

  1. A friend of mine who has always supported me with my blogging right from the start: Darlene from People’s Choice Movement
  2. Frank, a fellow blogger who also enjoys moving across the dance floor and who blogs at A Frank Angle
  3. T.B.Markinson from Making my Mark who has just published her first book.
  4. Kim who blogs at Building a life of Hope and whose stories are beautifully written
  5. Leanne whose stunning photos are always an inspiration: Leanne Cole Photography
  6. Chris The Story Reading Ape who helps readers meet writers and their stories
  7. The blogger at This Man’s Journey who brings together many bloggers through his weekly challenge
  8. Frizztext of Flickr Comments who unites many people through photography and news
  9. Laurie at Pride in Photos who daily gives blogging/photography tips at the end of her posts to help others in the blogging community
  10. Francine who blogs at Francine in Retirement posts both inspiring photographs and words

These blogs are only a part of my WordPress family. As time passes, I get to know more people through WordPress, and they become a part of the group of people I communicate with each week.

The Super Sweet Blogger Award

It has been a while since I have written an acceptance for an award nomination. The summer holiday is a time during which we can clean up our closets, and attend to those things we keep putting off during the rest of the year. One of my goals this summer is to clear my comment box of all award nominations.

The super sweet blogger awardThe most recent nomination I have received is the Super Sweet Blogging Award. This award was handed over to me by a couple of people: by Heather at Heather’s Photography who posts some stunning photographs, Tya at Expressions in a Tcup who is soon to be a mom, and Scrapydo at Scrapydo, Everything Crafty whose scrapbooking pages are beautiful.

In accepting this nomination, I need to tell you a little about my sweet tooth 🙂

  1. Cookies or cake? Both these sweet treats I enjoy. My favourite cake temptation is chocolate mousse cake – I can never refuse a slice. Offer me a cup of tea with a biscuit, and I will accept especially if shortbread is on the platter. 
  2. Chocolate or vanilla? Chocolate always wins when it comes to cake. When it comes to biscuit choices, though, the chocolate chip cookies may be set aside for tangy lemon creams and melt-in-your-mouth shortbread.
  3. Favourite sweet treat? A piece of creamy Lindt chocolate would win hands down. Candy, cake and cookies cannot compete with the creamy sweet texture of chocolate melting in my mouth.
  4. When do you crave sweet things the most? I have noticed that my craving for sweet things increases when I am very tired. And after a good meal, nothing is sweeter than a piece of chocolate.
  5. My sweet nickname?My nicknames do not tend to bring sweet things to mind. Though my husband has lately picked up the Canadian endearment “sweets” 🙂

For my nominations I am to choose a sweet baker’s dozen. I have noticed that most of the blogs I follow are award-free. I mention the ones I feel are super sweet, but know that some will not write an acceptance post. Try out the sweetness of the following bloggers:

  1. Sonel’s Corner: for some beautiful photographs and a super sweet South African. 
  2. Francine in Retirement: for beautiful photos and interesting posts that are often uplifting.
  3. Leanne Cole Photography: her photos are creative and artistic.
  4. Building a Life of Hope: I enjoy reading her well-written scenarios.
  5. Colonialist’s Blog: For some witty writing and interesting photos from time to time.
  6. Pride in Photos: Not only do I enjoy looking at the photos, but I also enjoy reading her pieces of advice on photography.
  7. 50 Year Project: A blog that centres on books, movies, and travels – all of which form part of her goal to visit 192 countries, read 1001 books, and watch the top 100 movies of all time.
  8. Ruth Hendricks Photography: for beautiful photographs.
  9. A Window into the Woods: A view into a back yard with a difference. I enjoy reading – and looking at – the antics of Suzanne’s animal visitors.
  10. My Wall: For beautiful photos and poetry.
  11. Restlessjo: I enjoy reading about her travels and visiting all the places she has been through her photographs.
  12. From the Bartolini Kitchens: This is more than a food blog. John links his recipes to childhood and family stories, making his recipes more than just food.
  13. This Man’s Journey: for inspiring posts.

Visit these bloggers to find out why I enjoy them and see if you agree with me.

The Epically Awesome Award of Epic Awesomeness

Epically Awesome AwardLast week I was given an award I had not heard of before: The Epically Awesome Award of Epic Awesomeness. The title makes me smile – as does the blogger, Alex, who nominated me for this unusual award. Alex: a woman who posts on interesting thoughts and ideas, a woman who tells it like it is, a woman who often makes me chuckle or think seriously about what she has introduced to blogger conversation. Her blog, …Things I Love, does not focus on only one topic of interest, but instead on the spectrum of things in this world that she enjoys. I smile because the title of this award is a name I would definitely associate with her.

As with any award, there are some expectations that come with it:

  • Write ten things about yourself
  • Nominate 10 blogs that you find awesome (and, of course, let the bloggers know about this awesome award).

I prefer, however, to follow the example of Alex and bend the “rules” a little. Instead of ten personal things about myself, I will share ten things that I find to be truly awesome in this world. 

  1. Ave Maria: This is a hymn that still brings goosebumps to my skin no matter how often I hear it. 
  2. The Argentine Tango: This tango is one of my favourite dances to watch. I love the quick movements, and the passion that the dancers ehibit.
  3. Strictly Ballroom: the best modern dance movie in my opinion. This satirical reflection of the competitive dance world reminds me so much of what I experienced when competing.
  4. The Cheetah: My favourite land animal is the cheetah. Not only do I find this cat beautiful, but I believe it to be graceful as it stalks and runs for its prey. 
  5. The Peacock: I marvel at the beauty of the peacock, my favourite bird. The colours of its feathers are stunning as they parade in the sunlight. 
  6. The Lord of the Rings: I have been a fan of Tolkien since I read “The Hobbit” when I was 11 years old. My favourite novel is certainly “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy. When the film came out, I was not disappointed. It is time, I think, I watch/read this story again. The story is exciting, and the cinematography in the film is just, well, awesome! 
  7. Braveheart: The theme of amazing cinematography is seen again, I believe, in this heart-rending film. 
  8. Gangnam Style: There are many versions of this song created by Psy. My favourite one has to be the one performed by the Ohio Marching Band. 
  9. Gumboot Dancing: I have always found this athletic dance interesting to watch – from the time I was young when we used to go on a Sunday afternoon to watch the miners sing and dance. 
  10. Ladysmith Black Mambazo: This group of men who sing acapella never fail to impress me whenever I listen to them. 

There are so many more awesome things in this world – but I shall stop here 🙂

Now to share some awesome blogs. These are 10 of the bloggers that I follow and read as often as I am able. A visit to them may introduce you to someone whose awesomeness you would enjoy.

  1.  John who blogs at from the Bartolini kitchens
  2. Francine who blogs at Francine in Retirement.
  3. Leanne who blogs at Leanne Cole Photography.
  4. Suzanne who blogs at A Window in the Woods.
  5. Frank who blogs at A Frank Angle.
  6. TBM who blogs at 50 Year Project.
  7. Vladimir who blogs at Wind against Current.
  8. Elizabeth who blogs at Mirth and Motivation.
  9. Laurie who blogs at Pride in Photos.
  10. Ruth who blogs at Ruth E Hendricks Photography.

One Lovely Blog Award

one-lovely-blogGeorge at She Kept A Parrot has complimented me with the One Lovely Blog Award. What can I say about this blogger? What first attracted me to her blog space were her photos – not only the way in which they were taken, but also the subject matter. These are always interesting and I enjoy looking at them. But the posts on this blog are not only photographs. This woman who “keeps a parrot” writes on whatever comes to mind: her personal experiences, her thoughts, her ideas. And having lived for seventy years, she has had a lot of time in which to develop her opinions.

Rules of acceptance:

  1. Thank the person/people who nominated you and link back to them in your post.
  2. Share seven possibly unknown things about yourself.
  3. Nominate fifteen or so bloggers you admire.
  4. Contact the chosen bloggers to let them know and link back to them

In order not to bore my regular readers with facts about myself which they may already know, I have decided to walk you through the day I experienced yesterday. Within this description, you may find that you discover these seven unknown “facts” about myself.

A day in the life of Colline: 

I woke up with the knowledge that today I had a job; and with the knowledge that the children I would spend time with were polite and followed instructions. Having been with this class before, I knew that today would not be a day spent wishing for time to pass quickly. I followed my weekly morning routine: publishing my blog post (that I had written the previous day); preparing lunch for myself and my children; showering, eating and getting ready to leave. Kisses good-bye and I left home, hefting my bag on my shoulder.

As the school today was within walking distance, I left 30 minutes before my starting time. Five minutes into the walk and I began to feel the heat. Today, I realised, was going to be one those hot and humid summer days that made one think regretfully of the past cooler spring days. By the time I had reached the school, I was longing for a cool drink and an air-conditioned space. That was a dream, however, as the room was already heated when I walked in. I opened the windows and switched the fans on, hoping to cool the atmosphere before the children entered.

As expected, I did not have a difficult day: the children were respectful; willing to do the tasks set by their teacher; and well-behaved. They were, however, feeling hot. Their red faces were before me as they asked questions, or set down to work. I had many requests of “puis-je aller boire?” – a request I could not refuse as I, too, was drinking continuously from my water bottle.

I was thankful when the end of the school day arrived as that meant I could leave the classroom. It was not much cooler walking home but I knew, when I arrived home, I would be able to wash my face with cold water and drink a long cool drink. Once home, I followed through on my desire. Once some household chores were done and a bit of homework help, I sat down with my family to eat the dinner hubby had cooked. And then? A little internet, a little TV, and afterwards time to sleep to rejuvenate myself for the next day.

Now some nominations:

These are the blogs that I love to read on a regular basis. I have not included in my list those that have already received this award:

  • A Window into the Woods: Suzanne is such fun to read – and I love her photographs too.
  • Cee’s Life Photography Blog: I enjoy looking at the photographs on this blog
  • Photography of Nia: Her beautiful “paintings” are always lovely to look at. And, of course, I love looking at the pictures of her home town, Istanbul
  • Life in Kawagoe: Cocomino writes about his life in Japan
  • A Food Addict: The postings of a woman who has lost over 100lbs
  • Wilden Marsh: Stunning photos of nature that are helping me learn more about our world
  • Magsx2 Blog: A versatile blog with many interesting posts
  • 50 Year Project: Journey with this blogger as she reads, watches, and travels her list
  • This Man’s Journey: Written by a man who began his life’s journey living on an island
  • Have a Dream: Michael writes on his experiences and dreams and often writes on quotes to help you think a little of your thoughts and dreams

There are other blogs that I would have loved to nominate – but unfortunately someone else did so before me 🙂

Happy reading.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

The Illuminating Blogger Award

light bulb conceptKKH Photos – Off The Desk has nominated me for the Illuminating Blogger Award. I would like to thank her for this compliment. If you are interested in photography and ways in which to improve your own picture-taking, go and visit her site and see why she was nominated for this award. Not only does she post photos; but she also shares recipes and her thoughts on various topics.

This award, given to bloggers that produce illuminating and informative blog content, was created by Food Stories to acknowledge good blog content. (The “rules” for this award can be read here).

In accepting this award, I need to tell you one random thing about myself: As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be a teacher. I remember playing “teacher, teacher” with my sisters – with me in the role of teacher. As I grew older, I thought of following other career paths but they never worked out. I have had many good years teaching – but there are times when I have been disillusioned with the profession. Now I am in a different country trying to work at the profession I was trained to do. Some more hurdles to be jumped …. but that is another story.

I would like to nominate the following bloggers for this award. In choosing them, I have taken to heart the description “illuminating and informative”.

  1. John’s blog titled From the Bartolini Kitchens, is more than just a recipe blog. He gives advice on how to prepare his recipes; and often teaches me things I have never dreamed of doing (like making cheese).
  2. Mags at Magsx2’s Blog points readers to some interesting information. Her most recent post, for example, show me a bit more about the whales that can be seen off  of the coast of Australia.
  3. Frank has called his space A Frank Angle. His posts range from politics, to religion, to sports, and what he did over the weekend.
  4. The blog titled Cosy Travels of the Viking and His Kitten take me to unknown destinations in Europe, and to places I have never heard of.
  5. Every week Jake is the person who helps me discover interesting photos and different experiences. Every week he hosts a challenge which he calls the Sunday Post – and always introduced with his own entry of stunning graphics. Join us and contribute to a growing contribution.

Tell Me About Yourself Award

tell me about yourselfA while back I was given the Tell Me About Yourself Award. As with other nominations, this one has been resting quite a while in my comment box. I always have so many ideas of what I want to share with you, my readers, that I sometimes forget about the compliments that have been given to me by other bloggers.

As with all awards, there are a few “rules” to follow when accepting:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog. I would like to thank Mind Mindful for her nomination. This blogger is a firm believer that the way we think is more important than what we think. Her blog is a description of her own journey towards being more mindful in the way she thinks.
  2. Write seven interesting things about yourself. I will try not to repeat what I have mentioned in other blog award acceptance posts. What you may not know about me: (1) My favourite hymn is “Amazing Grace”. (2) I would love to visit China to see the Great Wall of China, and some Buddhist temples. (3) I lived in Paris as an au pair for 10 months. (4) I do not enjoy playing word games. Bring out the Scrabble board and I will try to run away! (5) The board games I do enjoy playing are: Cluedo (Clue), Monopoly, and Mastermind. (6) I prefer intimate dinner parties as opposed to loud and rowdy social gatherings where everyone stands around with a drink in their hand. (7) And the best social event of all? One at which I can dance the night away 🙂
  3. Choose seven nominees. I have chosen to focus my nominations on bloggers that I have recently come into contact with for no other reason than I would like to learn more about them. I am still getting to know them, but in the meantime are enjoying their posts. I have nominated:
  • AllThingsBoys Blog: Written by a mom of 3 teenage boys, she writes of her children, posts photos, and writes on whatever comes to mind. 
  • Janet’s Craft: Do not let the title of the blog lead you to believe it is a blog solely about crafts. Janet blogs as well about her experiences as a Chinese woman who has moved to England and is adapting to the life there. In addition she blogs about her family. 
  • Scrapydo: Another blogger who posts on her hobbies, scrapbooking and quilting. However, she also posts photographs of her life in New Zealand as well as in South Africa. 
  • Craftcrazygran: Charlene is a South African who lives on a farm and enjoys doing any type of craft. If you enjoy exploring crafts, then this is the blog for you. In addition, you can read posts of her personal experiences; and look at her photographs. 
  • Shimmeshine: This is a blog written by a mom who loves to read. Her topics are diverse and interspersed with yummy recipes. 
  • Zelmare: is another South African blogger who writes on her current life experiences and shares her beautiful photos with us. 
  • 50 Year Project: TBM has created a self-challenge to read the 1001 must-read books, watch the top 100 movies, and travel to 192 destinations. The blog is about these experiences – and showcases some beautiful photographs from around the world. 

Enjoy the rest of your day – and browsing through some interesting blogs.  

A Second Nomination

Some of my readers have nominated me for blog awards that I have already received. Even though I do not want to create another set of nominations (I believe that doing this once is enough), I would like to acknowledge the compliment that has been given to me.

The first award received for the second time is the Versatile Blogger Award. I wrote my acceptance of this nomination on February 27, 2012. In my acceptance I shared 7 things about myself. Curious? You may go to the post to read them 🙂

For nominating me for this award second time around I would like to thank the following people:

  •  Nia, a kind and gentle photographer who posts beautiful shots of her hometown Istanbul. She goes one step further and creates what she calls paintings.
  • Writing as mothergorgan is a blogger who is interested in photography, biking and medieval history among other things. I know that I enjoy looking at his photographs too.
  •  Javeriya writes on issues from her  perspective as a Muslim woman. If you love horses, enjoy travelling, and are fashionable then this is the blog for you.

Another award that I have already accepted is The Sunshine Award. This award I accepted on April 3, 2012. If you are interested in reading my answers to the 10 questions you may pop on over there for a read. I would like to thank onelifethislife for giving me this compliment. This blogger attempts to capture the beauty, joy and memories of life with the camera. Her shots are a pleasure to look at.

Thank you once again to all the readers who have nominated me for blog awards. I appreciate the compliment and I will continue to strive to create posts that you will enjoy.

Top Recent Commenter Award

A while back Nia of photographyofnia nominated me for this award in recognition of my frequent comments on her blog. Thank you Nia for this acknowledgement though I do not find it too difficult to comment on your posts. Nia lives in Istanbul and shows me her beautiful city through her photographs. She also creates such beautiful art pieces with her pictures that one cannot help but respond.

I would now like to acknowledge the top recent commenters of my own blog, and pass on this award to them if they wish to accept it. I found their names in the “behind the scenes” Stats section of my blog.

  1. Scrapydo. I know that your technology skills may not allow you to post this award on your blog, but know that this week you occupy the top spot. Maybe you can put your scrapbooking skills into use and scrap your award 🙂
  2. Sonel comes in at a close second holding her camera in hand.
  3. Magsx2, armed with some interesting posts, comes in third.
  4. Nia is fourth with her gracious comments and compliments.
  5. Alex is on my list too. Thank you Alex for adding my blog to the things that you love.
  6. And Darlene is sixth – a new blogger who is just getting her feet wet in the blogosphere.

These six people are not the only commenters on my blog – although they are currently the most prolific. I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have liked my posts; and those who have taken the time to comment and answer my blog post question. Your comments add an extra dimension to my thoughts and experiences; and they help to create a conversation. In addition, your comments motivate and encourage me to continue blogging and search for topics I think will interest you, my readers.

To blogging, commenting, and creating a conversation …..