Posted in fiction, poetry, Quotes

A Fourth to Remember

Photo by Camylla Battani on Unsplash

Joy!
Wa-hoo!
Today’s the day!
Buzzing with excitement
We’re celebrating indoors today!
My owner created a scavenger hunt for me
She hid some delectable treats throughout the house
Pop a tunnel of floating bubbles along the way
Canine peanut butter, vanilla cookie treats
Await me at the end of the obstacle
An excursion to the back patio
Fetching a squeaky ball
My owner loves me
No fireworks
Tender
Care

Word of the Day: Excitement

Posted in Awards, Events, flashback, Nature, Quotes

Personal Life & Award Update

I hope everyone is well and healthy! Hence, the reason for my orange filled banner to encourage people to take care of their immune systems. 🙂

I want to apologize for my late blog posts for the A2Z challenge. I’m currently coping with the death of a friend who I had a real deep, caring connection with. For those of you who understands how that feels, it can be quite an emotional roller coaster. I’ve been sleeping and resting after being thrashed around by my feelings, memories, and thoughts.

Yet, I can just imagine him telling me, “Sa, hike with me. The beauty will surely make you feel better.” I will miss him dearly.

Imagine my smile when I woke up from my melancholic slumber to find a nomination in my inbox for The Real Neat Blog Award. This is actually the first time I’ve been nominated for this particular award. Thank you kindly James!

James has published a few books and possesses an otherworldly sort of imagination. One of the titles to his book, “The Haunting of a Marcasite“, surely has me intrigued. Stop by his blog for an interesting read and step into another world of memorable characters!

Rules For The Real Neat Blog Award :

  1. Display the Blog Logo in your blog.
    (I re-made my own banner, but you can find logos online. 🙂 )
  2. Thank the Blogger who nominated you.
  3. Do not forget to link to their blog for nominating you.
  4. Answer all the questions they have given you.
  5. Nominate 7 to 10 other Bloggers of your choice.
  6. Ask your Nominees 7 questions.

James’ questions:

What is your favorite place to get away to?
There are so many beautiful places in the world that I would like to visit, but I can only speak to places I’ve been to. There’s physical places where I’ve only visited once in my life.

Like… Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. Visited this wondrous place 11 years ago and its natural beauty astounded me as the captain navigated our boat between the rocks. I was in awe and wanted everyone I knew to experience this with me.

Image Credit: Forbes

Right now, in the midst of this “self-quarantine”, my favorite place to get away to is here on my blog as I drink a good cup of tea. I’ll be working on my challenges today and check out the worlds of other A2Z participants!

If, you choose to become a famous actor or screen writer? What would you choose?
I’ve really enjoy memorizing lines and acting in theater plays. I relish the idea of performing on stage playing a role and entering the mind of another character. Even though I enjoy creative writing on a small scale, I never really thought of screen writing before. Acting feels instinctual to me whereas writing requires a lot more work to imagine an extensive and cohesive plot line. I’ve known a lot of people who were highly skilled in it though. We tend to work together quite often!

What is your favorite holiday ? Why ?
It’s difficult for me to choose as it’s split between traditional and non-traditional holidays. There seems to be a holiday for anything and everything. There are some “holidays” that I celebrate everyday.

That being said, I’ve celebrated many holidays with friends and family. I enjoy the big, traditional holidays as they allow me to reconnect with loved ones such Christmas, Thanksgiving, Lunar New Year. However, I’ve had some very meaningful, quieter moments celebrating Passover, Veterans Day, Palm Sunday and Lent.

I also like World Water Day, Earth Day, Random Acts of Kindness, National Comic Book Day, and May the 4th be with You.

Ice skates or Rollerblade?
Ah! I love both equally. I have great memories for ice skating and rollerblading!

Style is that which indicates how the writer takes himself and what he is saying. It is the mind skating circles around itself as it moves forward.

Robert Frost

What are your favorite toppings to put a pizza ?
Pineapple, mushrooms, green peppers, onions, black olives

A strawberry milkshake or a vanilla milkshake ?
Strawberry milkshake! I love strawberries! I found out that my birthday lands on National Pick Strawberries Day. 😉

What is the funniest show you have ever seen ?
Movie wise I kept laughing throughout “O Brother, Where Art Thou” & “Miss Congeniality”!

As for TV shows, it’s difficult for me to choose! There’s funny shows that I think I can only watch once like Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Big Bang Theory, & Malcolm in the Middle. There’s other shows that I can watch more than once like How I Met Your Mother, Simpsons, or Gilmore Girls.

Bloggers Nominated:

  • America on Coffee: Coffee shops have been near and dear to my heart. I love the random assortment of music and shows that are shared.
  • Kate @ Holistic Life by Kate: Beautifully designed site, chock-full of mindful resources to help others live a better life.
  • Dr.Tanya @ Salted Caramel: The positive & sound advice she gives is a beacon of light. I appreciate her wisdom. She hosts “Blogging Insights Series” and shares great pointers.
  • Mr. A @ A Barbarian in Gentleman’s Clothing: Shares excellent book reviews and tips spoken from the wisdom of life experiences.
  • Sadje @ Keep it Alive: Her short stories and poetry tie in with wonderful lessons. She hosts “What do you see?” creative writing challenge.
  • Jay @ Fragrance Writer: He writes some beautiful poetry about fragrances, life experiences, and is willing to collaborate with other poets to create great works.
  • Tatiana @ Travelways: Her blog is incredibly rich with unique experiences and beautiful photos. It’s a visual delight!
  • Ann-Christine @ Leya She features some beautiful photos on her photo blog that bring a lot of peace to my life. Motto: “To see a world in a grain of sand…”
  • Zy Marquiez @ Breakaway Individual.com: He has written on an assorted array of topics from creative writing, culture, health and biotech with an interesting take on issues.
  • Dracul Van Helsing: Published Sherlock Holmes fanfiction & vampire novels; He also regularly writes intriguing fiction tales related to current events
  • Sandomina @ Insightful Geopolitics: Informative posts about the mysteries of space and global threats
  • The Alchemist Studio: Enjoy checking this studio’s pottery collection and listening to random thoughts and musings
  • Mollie @ Frugal Hausfrau: I enjoy checking out her savory recipes and mouthwatering photos to match.
  • Andrea @ Cooking with a Wallflower: She covers tasty dessert recipes, travel trips, and blogging tips on writing quality content.

My blog compliments your blog! You’re not obligated to respond, but I just wanted to take time to appreciate the hard work you put into your blogs.

Questions to Nominees:

  1. What kind of music are you listening currently to calm or motivate yourself from the “outside noise & news”?
  2. What has been your greatest achievement this past year?
  3. What kind of skills do you want to develop in the months ahead?
  4. What on-screen villain is most intriguing to you?
  5. Do you have an outfit that makes you feel great about yourself, seems to boost your confidence, or makes you feel invincible? 😉
  6. Was there ever a movie or documentary that inspired you to take action or made you want to learn more about the background story?
  7. What kind of activities do you and your best friend do together? Do you have a favorite funny memory that you share?
Posted in Dreams, Events, Music, Quotes

SoCS: 2020 Vision – Happy New Year!

2019-2020 SoCS Badge by Shelley! 

Happy new year everyone! I hope you all had a blessed day! Cheers to new dreams and goals ahead with powerful declarations for the future. You’re worthy of great things in your lives and I hope that you will live up to your full potential.

Image by alan9187 from Pixabay

I’ve been relaxing, tidying up my room, enjoying time with the family, and entranced by a variety of shows on Netflix. Growing up, I had terrible vision, and always needed glasses. I always wondered what it would be like to see with 20/20 vision with full clarity.

What does my vision for 2020 look like? Maybe it can be clearer with the help of this really thoughtful gift my coworker gave me as my Secret Santa this past Christmas. He knows I enjoy blogging, and I’m very excited to explore these quotes! Here’s one I’ll think about:

“I know the price of success: dedication, hard work, and an unremitting devotion to the things you want to see happen.”

Frank Lloyd Wright

2019 feels like a blur to me! From computer networking classes to public speaking classes, it’s been a journey of self-improvement. The ideas from the pictures and phrases that I glued to my vision board this year started manifesting left and right. I don’t know why I feel surprised. It’s typically a fun, relaxing craft activity for me. To be honest, the metaphysics behind the mysterious “Law of Attraction” still fascinates me. Maybe, I see what I want to see. Regardless, it’s been an interesting year and there are stories to tell!

I can share one story. I cut and pasted an intriguing quote I found in Forbes magazine from Douglas Baker Jr., CEO of Ecolabs. Curious to know why he was 2017’s Person of the Year by Twin Cities Business.

“Our focus is delivering clean water safe food, abundant energy, and healthy environments. These needs are fundamental and transcend economic ups and downs. Wherever water needs to be conserved, food needs to be safe, energy is required, and people seek healthier environments, we will find opportunity.”

Douglas Baker Jr.

One evening, the president of the local Rotary Club invites me to a meeting to see what’s new in the community. The Rotary Club’s central causes are: promoting peace, fighting disease, providing clean water, saving mothers and children, supporting education, and growing local economies.

I’ve been on the fence about joining because of other obligations. Despite my reasons related to time, I find myself participating in and feeling enthused by their community projects.

So, that evening a communication arts teacher shares with us a recycling contest the school has joined with Pepsi Co. My ears perked up. I’ve been looking for an environmental cause post-graduation. I immediately got to work and started to partner with the local Wal-marts and Mary Kay representatives to collect aluminum cans and type 1 and type 2 plastics. I’ve been collecting at my friends’ holiday parties as well.

My car smells soda and the scent has been attracting honey bees. My poor guests have been carefully shooing them out the window. I haven’t been able to drop them off at the school because the facilities are closed for the holidays. Thank goodness my boyfriend offered his truck to help which reminds me of this song!

Honey Bee – Blake Shelton

In response to:

Posted in Books, Events, Music, poetry, Quotes

Moments in December

“Topology is the science of fundamental pattern and structural relationships of event constellations.”

R. Buckminster Fuller
Image Credit: Pixabay

Partaking in the sweet delights that start with P
Peppermints, Prunes, Pudding, Parfaits
Relishing in a blogging sabbatical
Capturing beautiful scenes
Snapshots through my lens

Swimming in scholarly research
Computer networking class investigations
Challenging me beyond belief
Navigating among puzzling topologies
Sailing the network infrastructure

Listening to holiday live orchestra
Created by Air Force’s talented musicians
Looking forward to Breakfast with St. Nick
Playing arcade games and bowling with friends

Image Credit: Pixabay

Enjoying my coworker’s Secret Santa mission
A Russian gentleman’s favorites
Color black, Rock n’ Roll, Extreme Hot Cheetos
Playing music & games, Reading the night away

Black gift bag filled with goodies
Dmitry Glukhovsky’s Metro 2033
Rolling Stones Circus Expanded Edition
Coffee-scented snifty pen
Terminator button pin
Gothic pocket watch

I write Leo Tolstoy’s quote
Inside a greeting card of a festive cat staring at a gift box
“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.”

Image Credit: Pixabay
Ain’t that a Lot of Love – Taj Mahal

Hope you are enjoying the holiday season! 🙂

Posted in Culture, Dance, Music, Quotes

30-Day Song Challenge: Day 24

When we suffer a loss, a break up, a painful change in our lives, we need to remember to take all the time we need to heal emotionally. Moving forward and getting back on track with our lives doesn’t take a day. It takes a lot of small steps to allow us to break free from our broken self and move on.

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Good morning everyone! For those of you who celebrate Christmas, hope you are enjoying Christmas Eve! For those of you who don’t, hope you are enjoying the season! I’m about to head out for more festivities, but before I go, today’s musical challenge is a song by a band that I wish would stay together!

There’s a few that I grew up with. When these bands broke up, I wondered how each of the members would grow from the experience. I also wondered what that would mean for me as an active listener. It might be a bit of a stretch to think a band’s breakup would hit me hard, and yet part of my identity is found in the music I listen to. As a group, they empowered me. Going solo, what does that mean? In a way, it meant that I was growing along with them and transitioning to a new stage in my life.

Nsync- Tearin’ Up My Heart
Backstreet Boys – Chances
They were broken up, but I think they’re back together again? I love their new song!
Spice Girls – 2 Become 1
Oasis – Wonder Wall
Destiny’s Child – Stand Up For Love
One Direction – What Makes You Beautiful
White Stripes – Seven Nation Army
Posted in Music

30-Day Song Challenge: Day 20

Today’s challenge was not easy for me today! Mainly, it’s because I generally listen to music for enjoyment rather than scanning for different meanings of a song. So, I asked for some help. It’s not against the rule book! 😉 Like looking at a work of art, I think any person can listen to the same song and gather different interpretations.

So, I found this interesting article called The Hidden Meaning of these 8 Most Popular Christmas Songs. This was the excerpt for “Carol of the Bells”

This song originally wasn’t about Christmas at all. It was a Ukrainian folk chant called “Shchedryk” that welcomed the spring and described a bird flying into someone’s house to tweet about good fortune. Composer Peter Wilhousky heard the chant performed and wrote the English lyrics to the popular, fast-paced “Carol of the Bells.” 

Carol of the Bells, Mic.com

Lindsey Stirling performs an amazing Carol of the Bells and takes us on a wintry adventure!

My roommate shared with me “Casser La Voix” by Maxime Landry showing the range of the French language. Many French words can take on various interpretations in music.

A friend recently shared with me “Trampoline” by Shaed. I felt like trampoline was a metaphor the subconscious or a dream world.

In response to:

  • FOWC with Fandango: Easy
Posted in Music

30-Day Song Challenge: Day 17

Next time I am at a karaoke bar and I were to do a duet with a special someone *cough* 😉 , I would LOVE to sing “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”! I’m giving credit to you, Ms. D! This video sung by Michael Buble and Idina Menzel is so so adorable! ❤ 🙂

Posted in Concepts, Culture, fiction, poetry, Technology

Wintry Virtual Reality

Photo Credit: KUKASMUU.COM

My friend knew that I was intent
on exploring a stimulating new hobby
so she gave me a gift of virtual reality for Christmas
and helped me strap on the goggles over my eyes.

Anticipating a special adventure,
I wake up in a red telephone booth
which transported me into a kind
of magical wintry masterpiece
in the snowfall of my mind.

I was taken aback by a set
of yellow eyes staring back at me
through the foggy window
with its brilliant iridescent fur
coruscating against the snow.

I suddenly remembered that
the game maker added a nice feature
where this mythical canine
will serve as a sapient cynosure
for the rest of my journey.

The quest involved finding a golden tree
in a labyrinth made of holly bushes
guarded by the Ice Queen
who spoke in riddles and resided
in a sacred temple outside the entrance.

Grateful for my linguistics background,
I felt like it would be fun
to have some tea and chat with the queen,
but little did I know of what I 
was going to encounter in this reality.

In response to… a lot of words and phrases this past week! Thank you for your inspiration! 🙂

Posted in Crafts, Culture, Events, flashback, Food/Recipes, Music

Q&A: Christmas Fireside Chat

Final testing season is over for me! Whew! This semester was quite a doozy, and those test makers sure know how to give many curve balls. Those mental gymnastics sure has made my mind more agile. Winter break is opening up for me, and I might be able to do more blog posts now! Yay!

Jenna, The Sunshine Artist, has invited me over for a Christmas chat by the crackling fireside! So now, I’m going to relax here with a cup of hot cocoa with marshmallows as I dive into and share with you all my cherished memories  in regards to Christmas. If you seen my post on  3.2.1-Celebrations, you’d know that I love to celebrate, and  there is more than one favorite memory! What are yours?

What’s your favorite Christmas movie?

Back when I wasn’t studying for the GMAT, I would go through all of Netflix’s Hallmark Christmas romance movies and eat some chocolate: A Christmas Prince, A Christmas Kiss, Christmas Lodge, Christmas in the Smokies, Christmas Inheritance… Maybe, I can sneak one in now, they feel so good! ❤ My favorite though would probably be Home Alone. 🙂 

What’s your favorite Christmas tradition?

Every Christmas has always been different for me! So I’m not sure I have a specific tradition. I roll a bunch of traditions into one event. Does that count? 😉 I enjoy attending Christmas mass with my family and learn the true meaning of Christmas after watching a creative theatrical nativity play hosted by the teachers and children. I also really enjoy creating hand made Christmas cards and help bake sugar cookies with some friends to deliver to the kids at a local orphanage. I really enjoy baking every Christmas! I also buy one toy for the Christmas Angel programs.

What was your most memorable Christmas and why?

So you might think I’m a bit insane, but this is the first memory that comes to mind at the word memorable! So, all of the second grade teachers at my school had worked with the parents to create a fun activity. Each student was going to bring a yard of Christmas themed fabric of his/her choice. The teachers and the parents who knew how to sew were going to create several “noodles” with each piece of fabric, stuff it with polyester, and bring it back.

The day before all of us headed out for winter break, all the students in our grade were going to work on this craft activity. Each student received 3 noodles made from fabric that were brought by other students. I just thought it was neat that I could have a piece from another student’s fabric. I just felt a sense of unity as we worked on this project together.

I was feeling under the weather, but I was so excited to work on this crafty activity. I didn’t want to miss out on the fun. The room was in a pure creative state for 3 hours as all the students in the throughout the hall braided and decorated these wreaths creating all sorts of unique creations.

I was feeling tired near the end of the day. I started to relieve the itch that traveled up and down my arms. As I scratched it, I noticed that there were red bumps. I touched my forehead and realized how hot it was. I was coming down with a fever. By the time I was finished with my wreath, I realized that I had the chicken pox!

I guessed I missed my vaccination. (Nowadays, I try to stay updated on my vaccines.) I was so worried that I passed on my chicken pox to the other students, so I warned all of them to stay many yards away from me. When we were all done and ready to go home, my classmates waved and wished me a Merry Christmas as they safely kept their distance.

My mother disinfected and washed my wreath. Even though I was sick, I was glad  to have made this wreath with good holiday cheer!