‘Tis the Season – Sweet Inspiration








‘Tis the season.. Have you seen that snow falling across the pages of WordPress?  Thought I was imagining things at first.  Lovely soft falling snow.

It must be that giving season.  I have been given an award not once, not twice, but three times!  What fun!

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award was sent my way by  WIE SAGT MAN…?, A Hausfrau in Deutschland.  An informative blog about two Americans living in Germany.

The Petroleum Wife, TCK and trailing expat spouse, also sent this award my way.

I thank you both.  You inspire me as well.

For once, I am going to follow the rules (more or less).  Seven things about me:

1.  I once had a turtle named Tootsie

2.  I like to watch Doc Martin and work on my needlepoint

3.  I love art museums

4.  I think Roger Daltrey is cute even though he is way too old to go prancing around stage with his shirt off

5.  I want to go to Buenos Aires and learn to Tango and then see the end of the world in Ushuaia

6.  I am convinced chocolate and red wine will cure anything

7.  I love all you nutty bloggers


And the Nominees are:

Mumigrants  –  An honest look at being a mum and a migrant.

Expat Since Birth  –  A multicultural family living in the Netherlands

Mirth and Motivation  –  A TCK who believes in positive kismet/fate

American Tai Tai  –  In search of beauty in the mundane

Angelinem’s Blog  –  Traveler, photographer, nurse










My other award comes from  Jumble,  An American woman living in China.  It is the The Super Sweet Blogging Award.  Not sure if I got it because I am so sweet or because of my Food Friday.  I’m sure it was both!  🙂  Thank you, Ms Jumble!!

This one comes with questions:

1) Cookie or cake?   Chocolate chip cookies, of course!

2) Chocolate or vanilla?  Is that a choice?  Chocolate all the way.

3) What is your favorite sweet treat?  Dark chocolate truffles

4) When do you crave sweet things the most?   The holidays!!

5) If you had a sweet nickname what would it be?   Dulcinea


And now, drum roll….

This one goes to Maggie at Fly Away Home Book, A New Jersey girl living in Norway.  She is very sweet and currently sitting under a ton of snow.

Happy Holidays everybody!!




Two more Stars!

Blog of the Year Award 3 star jpeg

My latest award is the Blog of the Year Award which is kind of unique because you can collect up to six stars.  I just received two more stars.

One from  Moonbeam McQueen who bounced it back at me and one from It’s Lynny Kansas.

Thank you both!!  I’m not going to give another boring acceptance speech but I am going to share with you all the people who are connected to my stars.  It looks like an interesting group and I am going to have to take some time to visit them all.

Maybe you should too!!


Fly Away Home

The Displaced Nation

The Thought Palette

Legal Nomads

Tail of A Trailing Spouse

In Search Of A Life Less Ordinairy


Knackered Mother’s Wine Club

Maps and Mojitos


Crazy Train to Tinky Town

World Whisperer

The Palladian Traveller

Writing Between the Lines.

Before I forget

One More Morning

Stuff I Tell My Sister

It’s a Whole New World

It’s All About Purple

Robin Coyle

Dianne Gray

Maddie Cochere

Miss Snarky Pants

Rendezvous with Renee




Info for the award:  Blog of the 2012 Year Award 

Blog of the Year Thanksgiving





It is almost Thanksgiving Day in the USA.  I think it is the most important holiday we have.  It has nothing to do with religion or ethnicity.  It is the one day a year this big melting pot comes together on common ground and takes a moment to reflect on all the things they have and should be thankful for.  They don’t all eat Turkey, they don’t all watch Football, they don’t all have big families surrounding them, but they all have something to be thankful for, even if it is something small.  And this day should remind them of that.

One thing I am thankful for is this blog and all the fellow bloggers I have come in contact with over the past 8 months.  I love writing little stories and reading other people’s pieces.  I am only sorry I don’t have time to read as much as  I would like.  There is so much interesting stuff out there!!

Maggie at Fly Away Home was one of my first followers and she has been very supportive all the way through.  I have enjoyed reading about her life in Norway and growing up on the New Jersey shore.  Her book, Fly Away Home, is great! Check it out.

Maggie has now bestowed the Blog of the Year 2012 Award on me. Thank you, Maggie!

Well, it has been an interesting year.

I started my blog with my new Mantra:  “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”

I have written 109 posts about growing up TCK, travel, genealogy, my current life, and various other miscellaneous things that popped into my head.  I started a Food Friday blog that brought me back to my love of cooking.  And, I published my memoir, Expat Alien.

Plus I had my gallbladder removed!!   (Thank you all for your comments and best wishes!)

I have a lot to be thankful for.

I am passing this award to:

Wanderlust Gene – because her beautiful photos are other-worldly and transport me to far away places

ExpatLingo – because she makes me laugh

Dounia – because she is a fellow TCK who “gets” it

Moonbeam McQueen– because she persevered and published her book, Peculiar Rhymes and Intimate Observations: A Book of Light Verse

Award Rules:

  • Select the blogs you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012 Award’.
  • Write a post and tell about the blogs you have chosen and present them with their award.
  • Please include a link back to this page Blog of the 2012 Year Award and include these rules (do not alter the rules or the badges).
  • Let the blogs you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the rules with them.
  • You can now also join our Facebook page – click the link here Blog of the Year 2012 Award and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience.

As a winner of the award please add a link back to the blog that presented you with the award. Proudly display the award on your side bar and start collecting stars.

Inspiring Blogs

So, not TOO long ago I was awarded an award….  the Inspiring Blog Award.

This came from Expatially Mexico, a German woman, married to a hotel manager, living on a beach in Mexico.  Can you imagine a better life?  She has a great sense of humor and appreciates her new surroundings.  You should check out her blog for sure.

I like awards for two reasons.  One, it brings out a more creative element where pretty much anything goes.  And Two, you meet the most interesting people!!

I back-tracked this award to see what “rules” there were and found all kinds of interesting people who don’t follow any rules.  Awesome!!

Check them out too…

Inspiring is the word of the this blog….  What inspires me, what inspires you.

I like this definition:   to exert a stimulating or beneficial effect upon (a person); animate or invigorate

Animate.  What Animates me?

Good wine

Heated conversation

Getting lost in any city

A good joke

And of course, Gertrude Stein, my personal word god.  From Patriarchal Poetry:

Let her be to be to be to be let her be to be to be let her to be let her to be let her be to be when it is that they are shy

Very well to try

Let her be that is to be let her be that is to be let her be let her try

Let her try

Let her be let her be let her be let her be to be to be let her be let her try

To be shy

Let her be

Let her try

Cheers to all of you.  And here are a few you I will pass the baton to in case they feel inspired:


Valerie Davies

A Chip Off the Old Blog

A Moving Story

Clearing Customs

Ha!  That should keep you busy for a while!

Happy Inspirations!










Robin at Bringing Home Europe kindly nominated me for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award.

The rules are

  • Thank the giver, link to the page, and add the award to your site
  • Tell 7 things about yourself
  • Give the award to 5 bloggers

Hey, Robin, Thanks!!

One — I don’t have a sister.  I never have had a sister. I mean not officially. I have a first cousin who is pretty close to being a sister. But the truth is all my girlfriends are sisters. I guess that is what they mean by the sisterhood.  All the cool blogging women who are becoming my virtual sisters.  What a great supportive place this is!!

Two — Robin says she can’t parallel park. When I was 19, I worked at an international research institute in Ibadan, Nigeria. I was working in the Visitor’s Center which meant I had to take people on tours of the compound from time to time. One day I was alone in the office when some French dignitaries showed up unexpectedly and wanted a tour. I got the car out and took them around the research labs and the different crops growing in the fields and eventually returned to the garage under the administration building. There was no place to park but a on the side where I had to parallel park. To my own amazement I slipped right in perfectly on the first try. Later when the dignitaries were meeting with the Director General, they commented on how impressed they were with my parking abilities!  Haha.  Today it is a different story, believe me.

Three — I dream of  going to Argentina and learning to Tango.

Four — I once spent 15 minutes speaking Spanish to somebody on a train in Spain before we realized we were both native English speakers.

Five — I can be forgetful sometimes

Six — I forget

Seven — Awards make people happy.  Some thoughts from the Dalai Lama on the subject:

  • Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
  • If you can, help others; if you cannot do that, at least do not harm them.
  • If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.
  • It is very important to generate a good attitude, a good heart, as much as possible. From this, happiness in both the short term and the long term for both yourself and others will come.

So be happy, Sisters!  I pass on the award to all of you…. and

I was an expat wife

Communicating Across Boundaries

Darlene Craviotto


Adventures in Expat Land

Sunshine Award

    Maggie Myklebust, author of Fly Away Home (a great book) has honored me with the Sunshine Award!!

Thank you, Maggie!!  This is a great way to start the week.

The Sunshine Award guidelines are:

  1. Link the award to the person who gave it to you.
  2. Answer the questions that come with it.
  3. Pass it along to other bloggers and let them know they have received it.
The questions:

Favorite color–  Ferrari Red

Favorite animal–  llama

The Lama

The one-l lama,

He’s a priest.

The two-l llama

He’s a beast.

And I will bet 

A silk pyjama

There isn’t any

Three-l lllama.

          Ogden Nash

Favorite number–     2     two,  me and you    2    

Favorite non-alcoholic drink–    Schweppes Bitter Lemon on a hot tropical day

Facebook or Twitterdont do twitter…

My passion


any kind – painting, drawing, needlework, writing, looking at art, dance, music

Giving or receiving both….

,,, You give but little when you give of your possessions.  It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.  For what are your possessions but things you keep and guard for fear you may need them tomorrow?  And tomorrow, what shall tomorrow bring to the over prudent dog burying bones in the trackless sand as he follows the pilgrims to the holy city?  And what is fear of need but need itself?  Is not dread of thirst when your well is full, the thirst that is unquenchable?

There are those who give little of the much which they have– and they give it for recognition and their hidden desire makes their gifts unwholesome.  And there are those who have little and give it all.  These are the believers in life and the bounty of life, and their coffer is never empty.  There are those who give with joy, and that joy is their reward.  And there are those who give with pain, and that pain is their baptism.  And there are those who give and know not pain in giving, nor do they seek joy, nor give with mindfulness of virtue;  they give as in yonder valley the myrtle breathes its fragrance into space.  Through the hands of such as these God speaks, and from behind their eyes He smile upon the earth.

It is well to give unasked, through understanding; and to the open-handed the search for one who shall receive is joy greater than giving.  And is there aught you would withhold?  All you have shall some day be given; therefore give now, that the season of giving may be yours and not your inheritors’.

You often say, “I would give, but only to the deserving.”  The trees in your orchard say not so, nor the flocks in your pasture.  They give that they may live, for to withhold is to perish.  Surely he who is worthy to receive his days and his nights, is worthy of all else form you.  And he who has deserved to drink from the ocean of life deserves to fill his cup from your little stream.  And what desert greater shall there be, than that which lies in the courage and the confidence, any the charity, of receiving?  And who are you that men should rend their bosom and unveil their pride, that you may see their worth naked and their pride unabashed  See first that you yourself deserve to be a giver, and an instrument of giving.  For in truth it is life that gives unto life– while you, who deem yourself a giver, are but a witness.

An you receivers– and you are all receivers–  assume no weight of gratitude lest you lay a yoke upon yourself and upon him who gives.  Rather rise together with the giver on this gifts as on wings; for to be overmindful of your debt, is to doubt his generosity who has the free-hearted earth for mother, and God for father.

                      from  The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran

Favorite pattern


Favorite day of the week–  Saturday with no plans

Favorite flower– Rose

“I am not a weed,” the flower replied sweetly.

“Please excuse me…”

“I am not at all afraid of tigers,” she went on, “but I have a horror of drafts.  I suppose you wouldn’t have a screen for me?”

“A horror of drafts–that is bad luck, for a plant,” remarked the little prince, and added to himself, “This flower is a very complex creature…”

                     from The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery

I’m passing this award on to:


My ABC’s

About three days ago a fellow

Blogger nominated me for the Awesome Blog

Content award.  Her name is Maggie and she loves

Dogs and

Even wrote a book called

Fly Away Home.

Goodness Gracious, I said.

How can this be?

I wondered.

Just then I thought about

Kindred spirits and how easy it is to

Lose sight of



Opportunities when


Question how things happen.  Does there need to be a

Reason for


Things or can we enjoy our


Views of the world with


Xanadu can not be far off when we appreciate the

Years we spend together in this


I nominate MoonBeam McQueen for this award because she is cool.

Happy Monday!!

An Award!

The Wanderlust Gene has nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award.  Thank you Ms Gene.  I enjoy her posts very much as well.  Be sure to visit her.

I started this blog only a couple of months ago and find it both inspiring and soothing.  I spend my days working  and then I spend my evenings wandering around the right side of my brain in a place where time doesn’t exist.

I am traveling the world, meeting new people and seeing new places or sometimes revisiting places.  Plus learning all kinds of new things about the world and about the Internet.  It is Fun!

So seven things about me:

I seriously believe that chocolate should be considered one of the major food groups.

I like cheese – any kind.

I love color, bright colors.   But I mostly wear black.

I like red wine but white wine is nice too.

I used to cook all kinds of complex things from scratch.  Now I don’t anymore.

I want to go to Tierra del Fuego.

I had five first languages.

Thank you (English)  Che zu tim ba deh! (Burmese) Dhanyavad (Hindi)  Nandri (Tamil)  Da blu (Karen – a Burmese dialect)

My nominations for this award are:

  • DrieCulturen
  • A Dutch woman who grew up in Africa.  Fellow TCK.
  • I was an expat wife
  • Born in England and raised in Canada, lived in France, Australia, and Singapore now repatriated to Canada.
  • Expatlogue
  • Irreverent observations from an accidental expat in Canada