Assignment #15 – Content Loves Design

The most recent assignment is to open up the “Customizer” and play with the design tools.  Well here goes.   I will once again post a old poem,  a Ghazal from  Feb 11/2006, edited March 10/06 and see what happens.  Please keep in mind this is an experiment.  I wouldn’t normally change the colour of each stanza.  It appears that Big Brother has limited customizer capabilities.

OK!  I tried it, it looked hideous so I removed the colours.  So far I haven’t come across anything that I really want enough to change the theme.  I am happy with the way it looks now and I will leave it this way.  No more fiddling around with the design.  OK…. I bow to the popular comments regarding the colours.  Here they are.

Fives Faces of the Muse

.

River flows swift, flashing cerulean hues

Carving channels deep.  Listen for the muse.

 .

Breeze gently whispers her name as the grass

Crowns nod. The capricious leap of the muse.

 .

Graciously Sun shares his benevolent light

where sleepy shadows creep.  Unveil the muse.

Earth embraces life – her arms grown from granite

A safe protective keep. Nourish the muse.

 .

Euterpe steals into my somnolent mind

seeking inspiration as I sleep.  Ah – the Muse.

 .

Cheryle Baker

The Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award

I want to thank Hannah of Simply Hanes for nominating me for The Sisterhood of World Bloggers Award.  I am so very honoured and grateful for her consideration.   Please pop over to her blog she is a versatile writer with many categories to delight you.    The Sisterhood of World Bloggers Award is given to writers who express the unique female experience.

The Rules for Accepting and Nominating are as follows:

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and link back to their site.
  • Put the award logo on your blog.
  • Answer the ten questions sent to you.
  • Nominate seven blogs.
  • Make a list of ten questions for your nominees.

My Answers to the Questions:

  1. What is your biggest fear and why?

Being successful, I would then have to accept that I can do anything I set my mind to.

  1. What are you motivated by?

To help.  If I believe I can be of help to someone I am all in 100%

  1. What was the last dream you remember?

It was an apocalypse dream where the captured were forced to tattoo their own hands with hunting knives.  Then the captors cut them off and left the victims to die by being skewered on a fence and hit by fast moving vehicles.  (Sorry… I ate something before bed, I shouldn’t have )

  1. What is your favorite book and why?

The Rhyming Dictionary – it is an invaluable resource

  1. If you could sit down and have a conversation with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be?

Buddhas’ Mother – he ordained her.  It would put to rest the squabble between Monks and Nuns regarding the suitability of Nuns ordaining Nuns.

  1. When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up? Do you still have that childhood dream?

At one time I wanted to be a Nun, an Actress, a Writer and a Conservationist (That’s what they were called back then).  Yes I still have those dreams.  Did the actress thing, practice ecological behaviour, I am now blogging and I teach Samatha Meditation based on the Buddhist Thai Forest tradition.

  1. Do you have a bucket list? If so what are the top three items?

a)  I would like to travel in my RV.  b)  Travel on meditation retreat with my Venerable Teacher.  c) Create a multi discipline creative healing retreat.  A large lodge with smaller cottages sequestered in the woods to accommodate, writers, musicians, healers, meditators and artists.  The property is located  in an area of wooded rolling hills and has a river running through it, for swimming and rafting.

  1. If you could boost one of your five senses, which would it be and why?

Improve my ability to listen to my intuition.  Not only hear it but listen to it.

  1. Would you rather die young, or live forever?

Die young, if it meant not coming back.

  1. What is your favorite thing about yourself?

My ability to enjoy being alone.

I nominate the following, in no particular order. 

Allychat’s Blog

Anecdotes from Along Life’s Road

Daily Cup of Wisdom

Iridescent Spirits

Shannon McFadden – Global Grandma

Kate M Colby

Serins Sphere

The 10 Questions.  I chose to ask the same insightful questions that were asked of me.

  1. What is your biggest fear and why?
  2. What are you motivated by?
  3. What was the last dream you remember?
  4. What is your favorite book and why?
  5. If you could sit down and have a conversation with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be?
  6. When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up? Do you still have that childhood dream?
  7. Do you have a bucket list? If so what are the top three items?
  8. If you could boost one of your five senses, which would it be and why?
  9. Would you rather die young, or live forever?
  10. What is your favorite thing about yourself?

Keep on Blogging and Enjoy the experience of writing.

The Liebster Award – Discover a New Blog

LIEBSTER AWARD

liebster-award-main

Wow!.  A. aka Mymischiefmanaged of My Lost Lexicon Blog https://mylostlexicon.wordpress.com/  nominated me for the Liebster Award.  Thank you.    Please pop in at take a look at her posts.  She has a welcoming voice and a flair for unique imagery.

The Liebster Award is awarded to new bloggers, those with less than 200 followers.  It is a way to encourage them to keep writing and posting to their blog.  It certainly worked for me.  I am so pumped to keep going, to improve my writing, to conquer the blogging world.  I cannot express how thankful I am to Mymischiefmanaged enough for the nomination.

I feel so encouraged.   I am glad I started Blogging University 101.  Everyone I have met has been very supportive and I am grateful for their comments and kindness.

The Liebster Award Rules for Nominees

  • Thank and link the person who nominated you.
  • Answer the questions given by the nominator.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers, who have less than 200 followers and link them.
  • Create 11 new questions for the nominees to answer.
  • Notify all nominees via social media/blogs.

Here are my response to Mymischiefmanaged’s Questions

  • Are you a morning person or a night Owl?

I am a night Owl, always have been always will be. I nap in the afternoon in order to get enough sleep.

  • What is the one thing you are incredibly bad at?

I cannot count.  I can administer a million dollar budget, but don’t expect me to go out onto a warehouse floor, count the number of pallets of pop produced that day and give you the correct number.  Even if I count the product four or five times, I will give you a different number every time.  I know it, I accept it and I no longer worry about it.

  • What is your favorite movie soundtrack?

The soundtrack to “The Keep” by Tangerine Dream.  I watch the movie almost yearly, just to listen to the music.

  • Describe yourself in three words.

Spiritual, Round, Creative

  • On a scale of 1-10, how adventurous are you?

Depends on the circumstances.  1-3 when it involves my work, 6-8 if I am out camping or rafting.

  • Where do you live? Do you like it?

I live in Calgary, Alberta – Canada.  I love it.  I’ve lived in many cities in Canada, one in Germany.  I  selected Calgary as my permanent home.

  • What is a piece of advice you would give to your future self?

Learn to listen to your inner voice earlier.  Don’t listen to others when they say you can’t or shouldn’t do something. You can and you should.

  • Are you more of a cat person or a dog person?

I am both.  Each touches my heart and soul in different ways.  The dogs in my life have shared their enthusiasm for everything with me.  The cats have taught me to love gentle solitude and independence.

  • What is your guilty pleasure?

A hot bubble bath in the middle of the afternoon and a good book.

  • What is your favorite color?

Green, the verdant green of the newly opened leaves of the spring.

  • Do you have any advice for me and/or other bloggers who are just starting?

Find a way to write everyday.  Connect with other writers who will encourage and support you.    For me this has meant registering for the Blogging 101 challenge.  I need the discipline and accountability offered by completing the daily assignments.    When all is said and done, I am hoping it will become a habit, one where I will write on my own daily, without the formalized schedule.

I NOMINATE THE FOLLOWING BLOGS

https://hirundine608.wordpress.com/        Needle at Sea Bottom

https://popnowlin.wordpress.com/            The Creek

https://simplyhaynes.wordpress.com/        Simply Haynes

https://eatliveescape.wordpress.com/         ELE

http://beanandbantam.com/                       Bean & Bantam

https://mrsmrobinson2014.wordpress.com/        MyMiaCreations

https://wisdomsquill.wordpress.com/                  Wisdom’s Quill

https://littleredstrings.wordpress.com/               [L]ittle Red Strings

https://blackgirlinsyracuse.wordpress.com/        Hello World

https://everythingpeculiarmaria.wordpress.com/          LiveLaughLove

http://wanderwomanblog.com/                            Wander Woman

MY 11 QUESTIONS

What always makes you laugh?

If you were a colour, what colour would you be?

Where is your favourite place?

How long have you been writing, blogging?

Who do you look up to?

What is your favourite and least favourite personality trait?

What is your most difficult experience?

What is your favourite word and why?

Who would you be if you were a person in history?

What do you look for in a post or a blog?

What has been the best piece of advice you have been given?

Enjoy writing and life with Love and Light

Cheryle

Assignment # 14 – Try Posting a New Style

 DEDICATION OF MERIT BEFORE MEDITATION

Pali Chant – Author Unknown

“May all living beings always live happily

Free from animosity

May all of us share in the blessings

That spring from the good I have done”

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

“Subbe,  satta, sada, hontu

Avera, sukkah jivino

Katung, punyung palung maihung

Sabbe bhaki bhavuntute”

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Pali Chant  translated to English & Thai   Courtesy of Willpower Institute Canada Meditation Centres

I set my format style to Quotes, but I don’t think it worked.  My preview looks exactly the same as my standard  normal style.

Anyway…   I thought I would share with you the chant I use before I meditate.  The purpose is to help set your mind to generosity and compassion.  It also helps to prepare the mind for meditation.  I believe it is a lovely sentiment encouraging peace and love for everyone.

13th Assignment – Blogging U 101 – Increase Your Commenting Confidence

Sometimes I don’t pay attention.  I think I am but when it comes down to actually doing what I am tasked with I don’t always have all the details retained in my brain.   One of the Blogging U 101 assignments asked that we personalize a prompt.  Seemed easy enough, except I didn’t remember to link my comments to the prompt I chose.  I can’t locate it now that I need it to complete today’s assignment.

I didn’t like the first prompt I came across on the Daily prompt of the day which suggested I take two protagonists from different stories and have them meet.  Characters are not something I have a clue about, I don’t know how to create them, relate to them or even how to make them relate to each other.  So..I skipped this prompt in favour of one I preferred.  Turn, Turn, Turn, explore your favourite and least favourite season.  That was easy.  I’ve already written a poem on my favourite season, spring.  I wrote a post about the season, posted it then proceeded to also post my poem.  Spring has come to my Garden.

Today’s assignments wants me to go back, read posts on the same topic written by other writers and leave a couple of comments.  Since I cannot locate the proper link I  went in search of a post upon which I could leave relevant comment that satisfies  the goal of the assignment:        https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_assignment/blogging-101-commenting-confidence/

  • Reading others’ takes on a topic you’ve tackled challenges your own thinking (and blogging).
  • It’s easier to enter a conversation when everyone has a shared experience, like responding to the same prompt.

I found a wonderful post by the Golflady reviewing the movie “Unbroken”.  I was lucky to be gifted a free pass to it’s preview in Calgary.  I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and thought it has so much to teach us about how important our attitude toward life is to how we survive and even if we survive. This link will take you to her review.   What We Can Learn from “Unbroken”  by the Golflady  https://jking20.wordpress.com/2015/01/20/what-we-can-learn-from-unbroken/.

With all the technical assignments, reading blogs and writing I am learning to manoeuver around WordPress.  An accomplishment for me.

Assignment 12 – Blogging U 101 – Create a better Blogroll

Assignment 12 – Blogging U 101 – Create a better Blog Roll

This assignment suggests that I share a few links that I love.  I believe I am a little ahead of the assignment as I already added the Blogs I Follow widget to my sidebar.  I was so confident that I had aced this assignment I almost forgot to write the post commenting on it. 

The blogs I follow belong to an interesting, visually stimulating group of wonderfully nice people who offer me insight into things I want to learn, cultivate and who generously share bits of their lives.  The widget places their pictures on the right side of my blog.   I hope visitors to my blog will drop in on their sites, find something appealing and follow them, thereby building up traffic and followers for the blogs I follow.

Twelve Habits of Happy, Healthy People Who Don’t Give a Shit About Your Inner Peace

A new take on living a healthy happy life.  Check out this link from:

I Am Begging My Mother Not To Read This Blog

and other tales from a twentysomething disaster

 

Twelve Habits of Happy, Healthy People Who Don’t Give a Shit About Your Inner Peace.

The Sound of Spring Has Come to My Garden

Blogging 101: Make a Prompt Personal   https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_assignment/blogging-101-personalized-prompts/

My first instinct when I read the 11th assignment was to just post this poem I wrote in 2006.  Instead of running and hiding behind these words I did write a post in response to the Daily Prompt

https://lightwalker1.wordpress.com/2015/01/18/assignment-11-make-a-prompt-personal-daily-post/

In addition to the assignment I decided I would also post the poem.   I hope you enjoy.

The Sound of Spring Has Come to My Garden

Listen,

Can you hear my garden grow?

I can.

It is not just a thought

my winter addled brain

has projected to confuse me

in the quiet, in the dark

hear the susurration of the spires

as they push, prod and propel

their way up from the depths

of earth’s frozen embrace

open your ears to the rustle

of the Bearded Iris

eavesdrop as the Tulips, red and yellow

thrust their way out

of the ground

the patter of the purple Crocus

reverberates as they pop and pierce

through winter’s debris

delight in the crack

snap and scratch of the blue

Silia as they shove

their way to sprout and swell

above the brittle leaves

the smell of decay is gone

my nostrils flare with the scent

of young verdant vitality

feel joy at their gain

the symphony is palpable

it resonates in my very spirit

tonight I can hear their fusillade

in the morning, I will witness their victory

Can you hear my garden grow?

I can

Listen…….

Cheryle Baker – 2006

Assignment 11 – Make a Prompt Personal – Daily Post

11th Assignment – Make a Prompt Personal

Daily Prompt  Turn, Turn, Turn   Seasons change so quickly! Which one do you most look forward to? Which is your least favorite?   https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_assignment/blogging-101-personalized-prompts/

My favourite season is spring, 2nd favourite is fall.  I tolerate winter, from the inside and enjoy the summer, outside, if I can travel and play in the water.

Spring brings with it all the hope of a future filled with sunshine and infinite possibilities nurtured by the rain. The healing green of the newly unfurled leaves energizes the landscape to grow and reach for the sky. The Silia and the Crocus poke their leaves above ground, followed by bursts of colour.  Brilliant hues of blue, yellow and purple.    Watching the earth come back to life after a long cold winters dormancy, revitalizes my outlook. Brings me back to the present moment, one where I leave behind thoughts permeated by darkness and move ever so slowly toward the positive filled with light.

Spring brings new life and a new outlook
Spring brings new life and a new outlook

Fall finds me enjoying the cool breezes watching the decay, sensing the continued cycle of death and rebirth is coming to a close.  My garden is filled with blossoms.  The late season, Echineacea and Feverfew brighten the slowly greying days.  The harvest at the end of summer is ripe and ready for picking. The bright red berries hang heavily on the Mountain Ash and the luscious green squashes hide amoung the vines crawling over the Nanking Cherries lining the alley.  The first snow drapes an innocent shroud over the garden hiding the past and reminding us the future is on the verge of today.

Winter is dark and cold, wild winds whip the chimes into a raucous symphony.  The doors and windows shut tight against the icy intruder. Winter is for hibernation, just as the bears do.  A comforter and a movie entertain while I sleep the long dark nights away.

It’s opposite, summer sees the windows thrown wide allowing the warmth to waft in with the song of the chimes as the breezes dance with the wind catcher.  Summer is for play, jumping and splashing in whatever water can be found.   Even the sprinkler in the backyard will suffice to ease the heat.

These two seasons either move too slowly or too quickly leaving me wishing them away or hoping they would stay, just a little bit longer.

Each year the cycle repeats, Spring the new beginning, the Summer for my playful youth, Fall full of beauty and for preparation and Winter for the comfort of a warm blanket.

Assignment #10 – Spruce up Your Sidebar

Well, I completed the 10th assignment.  I read all the posts on widgets then added a few to my sidebar to spruce it up.  It needed sprucing as my blog isn’t very visually stimulating. The changes I made should add some colour and interest to the sidebar.

I changed the shape of the photos in the gallery in hopes that they will appear larger. I also added the Blogs I Follow widget which display photos of the blogs I follow.  I like seeing these friendly faces here.  I imagine anyone who pops in will too.   The text widget welcomes anyone who stops by giving them a quick run down on what I plan to write about. Basically, my interests and my goals.  I hope the changes are an improvement.