I know, I know, I say such things all the time, egotist and drama queen that I am. If you were really sick of my self-aggrandizement I assume you’d have had the good sense to stop coming here by now. Thank goodness I surround myself with people who, though otherwise entirely admirable in their many stellar qualities, are just loopy enough to spend time with me ungrudgingly and continue to share their own blogging abodes and the treasures therein with me in ceaseless generosity. But I am feeling a little extra pleased with myself these days for a couple of particular reasons. I’m just ridiculously slow to get it all underway appropriately.
I am told that a recent post of mine was, in the tally of my benign WordPress overlords, number 365 in overall production here at the kiwsparks factory. That is, in the looser sense, a year’s worth of posts for a daily blogger. However, honesty and my personal traces of OCD move me to say that while I did indeed ‘officially’ commit only so far as one year’s worth of daily blogging, I hadn’t yet fulfilled that commitment to the letter since the one-per-day agenda began in earnest on, if I remember correctly, the 6th of July last year. Sure, who doesn’t need something to do to celebrate her wedding anniversary in a more special way than that boring old romantic stuff? So I had a second milestone of the 365 variety yet to achieve in two weeks. I did double-post a couple of times along the way when the whim emerged, but that in no way made me feel I had met the standard I set in my original plan. On the other hand, WordPress would no doubt find it arguable that I’ve posted, technically, daily, because the WP time stamp does not agree 100% with whatever time zone I’ve been in at various points along the year, so it dates my posts differently than I would, and I am happy to consider my own time zone the decisive one, even if it means typing madly until I can press Publish at the stroke (the clock’s or mine) of midnight. I’m nothing if not a control freak.
All of this being said, the rewards of committing to this year of daily blogging have been considerable and entirely worthwhile. I have gotten back into a dedicated practice of writing and creating visual as well as verbal images that is its own reward, to be sure. I am reminded of the need to Make Things on a regular basis and find pleasure in that process as well as sometimes amusing my own little silly self with the outcomes as well. Most of all, I have reconnected with a social side of myself that is sometimes less easy to access, as a more naturally introverted and even shy person who expresses her bolder and outwardly more comfortable character better in print than either in person or (quelle horreur!) on the telephone. Yes, my nearest and dearest will tell you that I am chatty (or verbose) and rather unfiltered in nature when around them, but of course many of you probably know exactly what I mean when I say that it is specific to my feeling safe and in familiar surroundings that brings out that extroverted version of me.
The biggest payoff in this blogging process is, of course, the presence of that sort of a Safe Place for me to have social interaction with a much wider range of wise and talented and fabulous and fascinating people from all over the world than previously possible. I may have had my own self-centered reasons for starting to blog, but it is you, my dear visitors, commenters and especially my blog-sharing friends, who have made it continue to be worthwhile and in ever increasingly fine ways. I have again been gifted with several blogging awards, and though the late spring-early summer schedule around here militated against my taking much time to respond properly, it is yet another reminder that my web community is generous and supportive as well as simply a fun and kindly group of people. So I must say further thanks to Dr. Dan and Susie and my delightful correspondent at veggiewhatnow for sharing their generosity of fine blogs and passing along blogging awards as well, respectively: the One Lovely Blog Award, Versatile Blogger and a recognition I’d never even heard of before, making me a Food Stories Nominee for Excellence in Storytelling. Cool! All of them, all of their blogs, and all of the kindness showered upon me.
I shall certainly try to honor the spirit, and hopefully the letter, of these awards but I’d appreciate it if you cut me a little slack when it comes to sharing those Fun Facts about myself (as if I haven’t poured enough of ‘em on you to nearly drown y’all already). As usual, I’m so impressed and humbled by the astounding company I’m privileged to keep that I hope every one of you will click on my three admirable friends’ names above and take a leisurely visit at each of their sites to see just what wonders await you there. You will leave far less hungry and far smarter and happier, really, I assure you. Dr. Dan is a Canadian internist and foodie-supreme who posts all sorts of succulent, sweet and savory cookery to make you dream. The wise and funny blog susartandfood is the place where Susie beautifully publishes her own marvelous food, along with superb art, fantastic writing and a good dose of wit throughout. And veggiewhatnow is a land loaded with grand vegetarian ideas, terrific photos and illustrations and a whole lot of useful information that just doesn’t show up anywhere else in such a friendly format.
My sharing of bits of brilliance about myself, well, that’ll keep coming in all of the upcoming posts just as it has in every post so far.
And here are some fellow bloggers greatly deserving of my passing along these honors, along with all of my previous nominees (please search my site via the various awards’ names found in my sidebar if you’d like to see the many other deeply deserving folk I so enjoy sharing with you):
For the Versatile Blogger Award, I happily commend to you the following standout bloggers: Mandy, filling The Complete Cookbook not only with gorgeous food and the photos thereof but also all sorts of domestic derring-do and lovely forays into the history (familial and wider-reaching) of landscape, pets, garden and more; Marie, managing a grand kitchen, a busy family, a beautiful property and gardens, and a dog who thinks she’s queen of the active crew of local wildlife, blogs at My Little Corner of Rhode Island; Claire, the travel, garden, cookery and photography (and more) blogger of Promenade Plantings; the supposedly year-stricken K, writing year-struck‘s wide-ranging, scintillating, touching and bracingly intelligent while often still hilarious tales; and Bishop, savoring through his Backyard Farm the natural approach to gardening, cooking, travel and the appreciation of fine libations both home-brewed and otherwise.
For the One Lovely Blog Award, I’m pleased to present: David, painting heart-stoppingly beautiful portraits and teaching lessons to lucky painters over at davidreidart (which my computer appropriately translates for me as ‘daredevilry’); Lindy Lee, weaving poems of the heart and telling tales that transfix, on Poetic Licensee; Nitzus, magnificent and insightful photographer spreading the admiration of memorable and remarkable people, places and creatures far and wide through his self-named site; Cyndi, bookchick extraordinaire, wending her way through collected poems, stories and essays of her own, and stellar photography in the pages of cfbookchick; and Dennis, that inimitable Bard on the Hill, whose poetry spills out of the Texas hill country in rivers shared with poems he’s selected from many other fine poets.
And for the Excellence in Storytelling recognition I enthusiastically nominate: Celi, at that magically inviting sustainable homestead, thekitchensgarden; John, who writes hymns of Italianate glory from the Bartolini kitchens; Tanya, la reina of the Spanish mountains’ bounty at chicaandaluza; Barbara, who has far more than justasmidgen of exquisiteness to share at her blog; and cookingspree‘s mistress of fabulousness at table, in the kitchen, and whatever amazing places she goes, Antoinette. All of my best to you–and theirs, too! Cheers, my friends.
A small footnote: while I am deeply honored and pleased to have been so generously given these recognitions, I am going to refrain from further award acceptance lest I spend too much of my time polishing my medals and strutting around in my tutu and tiara and too little time, well, blogging. Much ground left to cover, I’m pretty sure, even if I don’t yet know what it is. Meanwhile, you good people should busy yourselves with exploring the wealth of illumination at all of these other blogs too–so much fun ahead for everyone.PS–while I’m cresting this wave of self-promotional adulation, I’ll just mention that today at Zazzle.com there is a one-day 50% off sale on all of their posters and wrapped canvases, and mine are all over the site and pretty dirt cheap to start with, so if you go over there and search for kiwsparks you’ll see all sorts of affordable art, much of which has been seen on this blog before, on sale. Just saying.