Thank you! Thank you!

You can’t see me, but I’m smiling right now. You know why? Julie Krupp of Enhanced Perspective nominated me for the Sunshine Blogger Award, peer recognition for bloggers who inspire positivity and joy. Wow! Thank you so much, Julie!! By the way, your blog delivers on its promise, enhances my perspective, and always leaves me with a new insight. I appreciate you more than you know.

The Rules:

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
3. Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
4. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award in your post/or on your blog.

I must admit…I’ve wrestled with this post. Rule #1 was easy because Julie, a mindfulness teacher, is amazing, and you should definitely check out her blog. In general, however, I struggle with rules.

Questions Posed to Me:

1. What is the best present you ever received?

On the Holy Lands of the Aegean coast, Kody slipped a sapphire ring on my finger, gazed into my eyes, and proposed marriage again, and this time I knew without a doubt that our relationship would last forever. The sapphire symbolizes sincerity, faithfulness, and new beginnings. Mine will always remind me of my parents’ example, God’s presence, and the deep sapphire blue of the Mediterranean Sea.

2. What are three small sources of joy for you?

Practicing gratitude, knowing I’ve made a difference, dancing when the music plays, beating my husband at darts, sunshine in my day, my toes in the sand, the wind in my hair, my family, and my friends who are like family, oh, and my dog Rain, oh, and my grand dog Boozer. Do you see me rule-wrestling? But, seriously, we’re talking about joy here.

3. Where is the last place you traveled and why?

At question #3, I begin to wonder, ‘Who cares?’ Nothing extraordinary happened during my last travels. No disrespect, Julie! I’m just digitally processing here. Almost every time I write a blog post, I ask myself the ‘Who cares’ question, and my internal dialogue continues, ‘Who are you writing for anyway?’

‘Me,’ I usually say.

‘Then, why are you sharing it with the world?’

‘Because maybe someone else needs to hear it.’

As an observer of my own conversation, I realize I write when I’m inspired. Hence, the current wrestling. Back to question #2, writing gives me a small source of joy, especially when people find it relatable. Today I realize I’m writing for the award, and I find myself wondering, ‘Will my Sunshine Blogger award be revoked if I don’t answer all of the questions?’ And I try really hard to refocus on question #3 and answer the rest, and I hope someone connects in some small way.

Kody, Lauren, and I drove from Houston to Dallas over Memorial Day. Kody golfed with friends for three days, I saw a dear friend and we soaked in some sunshine at the Marriott pool, Lauren saw friends and went to Six Flags and to church with me. We dined (see question #9), we shopped, and in a blink, we found ourselves home again. It’s the little things, right?

4. Where is your dream vacation?

Thailand and Barcelona are tied for the top spots on my bucket list for cathedral and temple tours, not to mention question #9.

5. What did you want to be when you were little?

I wanted to dance on Broadway, 👯‍♀️ and someday I will. Okay, probably not on stage, but I’m okay with dancing in the street…

6. When did you feel that what you said or what you did really resonated with your soul?

I feel it almost every day, teaching. One of my favorite moments of this past year was when I told my students about that time I fell on my face.

7. What are you afraid of or what fear have you overcome?

I wouldn’t call myself fearless, but I don’t tend to worry about things. I suppose my biggest fears revolve around tough conversations and potential outcomes. I tend to leave things unsaid. Later those things may or may not matter, and often when it matters, there are more chances to get it right.

8. What is one of your favorite books?

So. Many. Favorites. If I could be more like any author, I choose Maya Angelou. I love Why the Caged Bird Sings

9. What is your favorite type of cuisine?

Thai…Thai Herbal Chicken Fried Rice, Thai Sweet Chili Paste with Beef, Shrimp Tom Kha Soup, Fried Crab Cream Cheese, all on the menu at Jasmine in Plano, TX, where Kody and I had a standing Friday night date for many, many years.

10. What is one of your favorite songs?

These favorite questions are killing me. I love variety and gravitate toward Indie rock/pop, like Hippo Campus “South,” 90s grunge, like Chris Cornell “Seasons,”and gangsta rap, like Rick Ross “Hustlin’.”

11. What is one of your favorite movies?

I will drop everything and watch Dances with Wolves, Moulin Rouge, or anything directed by Wes Anderson.

My Nominees: I chose blogs written by people I know personally. Let me introduce you to friends of mine.

Patricia and Marisa are beautiful and inspiring young women, my former students, rays of sunshine for sure, and Marisa has been a friend of my daughter since 9th grade. These ladies share a zeal for life and the University of Texas. Let’s see if they take on one final writing assignment. Regardless, please check out their blogs.

I’ve known Renee practically all of my life. We grew up together, same church, same dance lessons, in a small Oklahoma panhandle town surrounded by fields of corn and wheat that kiss the endless blue sky. Today Renee knows food and wine, travel and writing, and she leads a life of adventures. Click the link to witness joy in motion.

I met Shannon in the bathroom. Isn’t that where you meet your friends? We were both attending the Mayborn Literary Non-fiction Conference, where we sat around a table in an intensive writing workshop, and I bawled like a baby when sharing my writing. We ran into each other in the ladies’ room so many times over the course of that weekend, we became more than bathroom buddies. Shannon is my BB to this day, she has a passion for helping the homeless in California, and she totally helped me revise what is now this clickable post about my son’s journey with paranoid schizophrenia. Plus, the hilarity, check Shannon out.

It’s my honor to share with you my talented friends.

Broken rule #1, I have four nominees. Broken rule #2, I have one question, more of a writing prompt. I’m an English teacher.

Patricia, Marisa, Shannon, and Renee, here’s your question:

In honor of this Sunshine Blogger Award, will you write a post (any genre) that feels like sunshine?

I realize that some of you may not participate in awards, so no pressure to conform. I totally understand.

Patricia @ allthingspatricia.com

Marisa @ moonbeamzyoga.com

Shannon @ ramblinrandol.com

Renee @ connectorcreator.com

Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

Thanks for stopping by and reading today. May your day be filled with sunshine!

32 thoughts on “Thank you! Thank you!

  1. I’m not surprised! You’ve won many many top awards with me since you’ve been a very young lady!!! Good job to a Master Blogget!! Love you around the sun & all the planets 💜

    Dana Nana Mom ~~~~~

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Reblogged this on It's Always Darkest Before The Dawn: A Story of Hope and commented:
    http://www.achampionofhope.wordpress.com

    Hi Crystal

    Thanks for the follow *, as the reason I write is to share.
    * (Though my family and close friends say it would be far more entertaining with a video-camera # in “real life”, rather than in cyberspace!)

    # By the way, do they still make them in today’s ever-faster changing world..or is it all done with mobile phones?

    (get with the times now,”luddite”* c – it should be a smart phone)

    * or so I was often called by my “my techno-geek” friend, Bill (“the gonk”)

    “total non-techno” c (who doesn’t possess a mobile phone, after a rather eventful’ experience some years back, whilst trying to walk, talk and chew gum at the same time)

    Who says men can’t multi-task!

    Kind regards and happy writing, Crystal

    “early bird” (very) * craig
    * my “best” time (by far)

    “You will do foolish things…but do them with enthusiasm.”
    – Colette

    PPS

    Best wishes from the First City to see the sun (in summer) …and we’re also the first to see the sunset and the stars (in winter-time)

    “I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness because it shows me the stars.”

    Liked by 2 people

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