Tag Archives: blog awards

Seven Random Things About Me

It’s awards time!

Jemi at Just Jemi awarded me with the Honest Scrap Blogger award and the Best Blogger award. Thank you, Jemi!

As part of my acceptance speech, here are seven random things about me that you might or might not know:

1. My name. “Belle” is my full, legal first name, not a nickname. I spent my first 20 years of life wishing my mother had chosen a two-syllable first name for me, because I really disliked having a one-syllable first name and a one-syllable last name. Not that I have a poet’s ear or anything, but it never sounded quite “right”.

But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to appreciate my name more and more (especially after changing my last name during my first marriage – I felt so utterly foreign to myself! It was quite a relief to change back to my real name).

2. Making changes. By the time I was 16, I had moved 13 times. I think this is the main reason why I’m rather fond of change and big moves. If I don’t get the chance to move residences every now and then, I end up moving furniture or (to my husband’s chagrin) shifting entire rooms in the house.

We’ve been in our current house for over ten years now – way too long, from my point of view. So, as an example of my fondness for changing things around, our current dining room used to be the kitchen, after which time it spent a year as a storage room. It then became a dining room, was changed to the “train” room (as in a model train layout), and now, in its present incarnation, is a dining room again. It drives my husband nuts but makes me very happy.

3. Not quite a lethal weapon. I have a brown belt in Aikido and a black belt in Jodo. (Jodo is not Judo – at quick glance, it’s an easy mistake to make, but in reality the two arts are very different. Jodo is a traditional weapons martial art.)

People ask me all the time – so, when are you going to start training again? To which I must reply: Never. I’m quite content to rest on my laurels and glory in my past achievements without ever stepping onto the mats again. (And now you know why I’m failing miserably in the Fitness Challenge – please don’t look at my progress in the sidebar.)

4. My first book. When I was seven, I wrote and illustrated my first book, Adventures in Candyland. The main character was an enterprising round candy by the highly original name of Mint. I’ll give you three guesses what my favorite candy was back then …

I then went on to write and illustrate a whole series of Mint’s adventures in Candyland. Unfortunately, each one is long lost, but I can still remember the many hours of enjoyment I had creating each of them.

5. A detour in life that lasted a bit too long. On my first day of law school, when the Dean addressed the first years and told us we were “the cream of the crop”, I had to fight down a massive attack of the giggles. In retrospect, I should have known this didn’t bode well for a future career in law.

To make things even worse, he was actually stating a fact. Does anyone remember that scene in Legally Blonde where Reese Witherspoon is sitting outside with a few of her new classmates, and they’re introducing themselves? And everyone has a long, long list of impressive credentials and degrees? That would have been about 75% of my classmates. The other 25% came from families who dined regularly with the Prime Minister. (There was, of course, some overlap between the two groups.)

I’m not sure how I snuck into this highly refined and academically excellent environment, but I somehow did. Can we say square peg in a round hole? Or maybe a bull in a china shop?

6. My ghosting experiences. I once ghostwrote a book on customer service that was published by Wiley Canada. I knew nothing about customer service, but of course that didn’t stop me. I even came up with a great survival of the fittest theme to organize all the points in the book.

I was also a freelance medical writer for two years, during which time I ghosted doctors’ speeches, medical articles, patient pamphlets, letters to the editor, and the occasional monograph. As for how much I knew about medicine, see paragraph above.

7. Blather, blather, blather. I have a tendency to be very long-winded when I put my hands to the keyboard. (Probably not such a great trait when it comes to novel writing, but there you have it.) Oh wait, you already knew this …?

There you have it – seven random things about me!

I’d like to pass this award onto all of you, so if you’d like to play, blog about it and let me know your link in the comments here, or tell me a random thing or two about yourself in the comments!

Bloggiesta Mini-Challenges

blogiestaI just checked out the Bloggiesta mini-challenges, and I’ve decided to add these ones to my Bloggiesta list:

The Book Lady’s Blog: Clean up your feedreader. This is something I’ve been thinking about doing – I even posted about blog overload recently! My plan is to borrow an idea that Beth F. suggested to me: place the blogs that I am subscribed to in alphabetical folders.

Speaking of Beth F., I’m also going to be doing her challenge: Write a post and save it for another day. I’m not sure whether I’ll write an opinion post or a list post, but I have ideas for both in my blogging notebook, so I have quite a few choices.

I love blog commenting, although I don’t have as much time for it as I’d like. So I’ll be doing Fizzy Thought’s challenge: Go forth and comment!

Some time today I’ll also be heading over to GalleySmith’s and linking to something on here in her comments section with the proper anchor text. Unless a blog has enabled do-follow comments (for example, when you comment here, Comment Luv is activated and you get an SEO-valid link back to your latest post), you’re not going to get major SEO benefits from links in your comments on that blog, but it’s still a VERY good reminder to always use related anchor text when creating links to your blog!

The final mini-challenge I’m going to attempt is Book Blather’s blogging tips and tutorials challenge.  The idea is to go through this  list of blogging tips and tutorials at Problogger and learn a new tip (and possibly put it to good use over Bloggiesta!). This one sounds like fun.

Are you in Bloggiesta? Which mini-challenges are you going to tackle? Even if you’re not doing Bloggiesta, do any of these mini-challenges sound like fun to you?

Some Lovely Awards

This past week I received some very lovely blog awards.

Heartfelt Award

heartfeltDiane at The Book Resort gave me this sweet little Heartfelt award. Isn’t it cute? Diane created this award to express that nice toasty warm feeling you get inside, when you’re relaxed, having tea and cookies with friends and family.

It is such a sweet little award – I love the mouse popping in and out of the teacup! Thank you, Diane!

I’d like to pass this award to five book bloggers who have captured my heart – they are all on my “must read” list, and when I’m blog browsing, I always visit them first:

Kathy at Bermudaonion

Beth at Beth Fish Reads

Joanne at Book Zombie

Cathy at Kittling: Books

Ruth at Bookish Ruth

I’d also like to pass this award to the following non-book bloggers, both of whom have also captured my heart:

Amy at Rainflowers Garden

Heartsdeesire at Simply Blessed

One Lovely Blog award


I received the One Lovely Blog award from Fleurfisher, who happens to be one of my new blog finds, too!

It’s an award for bloggers and blogs you’ve newly discovered.

I’m passing this award to the following bloggers, each of whom has a lovely blog that’s relatively new to me:

Deborah at Books, Movies and Chinese Food

Lezlie at Books ‘n’ Border Collies

Wendi at Wendi’s Book Blog

Bobbie at Book Reviews by Bobbie

Diane at The Book Resort

The Lemonade Award

lemonade_awardDiane at The Book Resort also passed the Lemonade Award to me. It’s given to those blogs that show great attitude or gratitude. Another lovely award!

I’d like to do something a little different with this award. I follow so many great book blogs in my feedreader, and it seems to me that as a whole, this entire community is one with great attitude and gratitude.

So I’d like to figuratively present this award to the community as a whole!

Ms. Bookish’s First Award!

This was such an unexpected surprise to come back to from my holidays, and such a wonderful way to start the new year. Jessica at Living Between the Pages gave me this beautiful Butterfly Award!

Part of the fun of receiving a blog award is passing it on to others. So I’d like to pass this award to my dear friend and fellow book blogger Ann-Kat at Today I Read. She definitely has one of the coolest blogs around!