Posted in Culture, Dreams, Quotes

#SoCS- Murmurings of Czech

If European cities were a necklace, Prague would be a diamond among the pearls

Anonymous

Czech Republic has been a country I’ve frequently heard about throughout my life. Whether it was my high school project on the Cold War, a Sabrina the Teenage Witch comedic sitcom episode, or one of my many places on my director’s travel wish list, Czech has always struck my curiosity with a peculiar fascination.

Though travel slow right now, I have a travel membership that allows me to daydream a bit in the meantime. They have categories which makes it difficult for me to choose:

  • Go Back In Time in Prague and Beyond
  • See Picturesque Prague by Land and Water
  • Relive Medieval Times in the Czech Countryside

Prague

Here are some snapshots of some areas in Prague I found on the website! The towering Gothic architecture is a sight to behold!

Walking around the Prague is comparable to being in a fairy tale: except for one minor detail: it’s real. 

Lust for the World (1 day in Prague)

Prague; the city so beautiful that it was spared by Hitler… or so the story goes. Prague is a living and breathing enigma; old and dirty but somehow unimaginably graceful.

World of Wanderlust

The ancient splendor and beauty of Prague, a city beyond compare, left an impression on my imagination that will never fade

Richard Wagner

It’s easy to fall in love among the winding cobblestone streets and snow-covered castles of Prague, but is it a good idea?

Dana Newman, Found in Prague


Detinice Castle, Kralovehradecky

Excerpt from Unusual Hotels of the World:

Medieval themed hotel providing magical middle ages experiences in an authentic setting

This property is a fantastic escape from the day to day boredom and way better than any chain hotel for stories to tell your friends about. Step back to a more rustic time and enjoy the authentic and imaginative attention to detail, the quality of entertainment, excellent food, wine and the whole atmosphere to make your trip memorable and truly MEDIEVAL!

Wooden floors, wooden beds, simple and rustic furniture – original pieces, candle lit rooms, unique bathrooms – simple, rough but stylish, wooden faced flushing toilets, etc. Behind the decor, the facilities and service are modern.

Dinners are served in the next door Brewery Tavern – an extravaganza of banqueting, drinking and regular live entertainment medieval style.
Feast on food prepared on a traditional open fire and beer served by tough and tender wenches of the Inn. Be entertained by swordsmen, jugglers and dancers in the candle lit vaults.  But be prepared for medieval mannerisms – keep in check or fall foul of the Innkeeper!!

A part of the Dětenice resort – baroque Chateau, adjacent Medieval Tavern with Brewery and authentic style Medieval hotel.

Eastern Europe has been really trendy. Prague is the best-preserved city in the region … and the best beer in Europe lands on your table there for 50 cents.

Rick Steves

I will end my daydream with a quote unlike the ones shown above. I suppose I need a balanced perspective! 😉

How can you not love a city that has a pub with vinyl cushions on the wall above the gents’ urinal, so you can rest your head while you ‘go’? Where you can order a beer without speaking, simply by placing a beer mat on the table? And where that beer is probably the best in the world?

But it’s not just exquisite ale and a wonderfully relaxed drinking culture that keep bringing me back to Prague. There’s also wit and weirdness in equal measure: a public fountain where two figures pee in a puddle, spelling out literary quotations; a 1950s nuclear bunker hidden beneath a city centre hotel; and a cubist lamppost. Quirky doesn’t even begin to describe it.

-Neil Wilson (Lonely Planet)
Posted in Culture, fiction, Quotes

#A2Z- The Ciselure Shop (fiction)

The chimes on the door clanged. A portly gentleman dressed in an olive-green tweed suit just entered Vpyshit’sya, a small shop nestled within a mountain village of Dzembronya, Ukraine. Novak took a burgundy handkerchief from out of his breast pocket, and wiped the dust off his gold rimmed glasses. He breathed a sigh of relief that he arrived in one piece as the foggy weather made safety of the travelling conditions questionable.

After taking a quick glance inside, he decided to walk around the shop quietly studying the craftsmanship of the metal pieces that were on display. He displayed a keen perspicacity in recognizing quality pieces. He heard about this shop as he chatted to the barman last night. Ukraine was well known for a variety of metal and wood carvings.

He was immediately enthused by the diversity of products he found: unique jewelry that was encased by glass display boxes, brass Viking shields that hung on the walls, intricately engraved kitchen knife sets, engraved metal wall decor.

He slowly found his way to the check out desk in the back of the shop. He noticed a young lady diligently working in the back room. Sophia’s family has been in the ciselure business for five generations. Her family taught her everything they knew, and precocious Sophia became a young master in the craft. She was inspired by a few techniques from a video she watched.

She was finishing up an jewelry box for an exhibit held at the Metal Working International Trade Fair in Kiev, the capital. She was looking forward to learning new things in metallurgy and the innovative tools in metal industry.

Novak cleared his throat, “Excuse me, mam. I was told that you can create metal designs for a wide variety of things.” Sophia broke from her trance, got up from her workstation, and walked towards the man. He took out a wooden box from his bag, and set it on the table.

“Careful now, there’s a golden pocket knife I would like to engrave for my son. It’s his birthday and there is something I would like to inscribe.” He took out a note for Sophia to read:

My son, take time to sharpen your skills, your tools, your resources, and you’ll be more productive. Much love, Novak

Image Credit: Pixabay

In response to:

Posted in Culture, Dreams, fiction, poetry

#A2Z – Burj al Arab (quadrille/cinquain)

Listen
Near string quartet
Enjoying 3-toned drink
Seeking closure from past mistakes
Sharp shame

Image Credit: Pixabay

Hotel
Burj Al Arab
Shields from disappointment
From its opulent interior
New life

Image Credit: Harrison Jacobs – Business Insider

Golden
Seashell Entrance
Tries sweeping memories
Welcomes those who choose a new path
Journey

Dubai’s bright allure!

In response to:

Posted in Awards, flashback, Music, Nature, Quotes

Sunshine Blogger Award #6 from Wondering Belle

Good morning! These past few days, I’ve been enjoying a moment of respite as I indulged in my hobby of sewing. I’ve been walking been on nature walks with friends, and I can’t help but feel inspired by mother nature. I like to thank Wondering Belle who has graciously nominated me for a Sunshine Blogger Award. I really enjoy these as I get to know my questioner better by the questions he/she asks and introduce a new person to my readers! She enjoys having fun exploring the wonders of the world through her lovely writing! Here are the rules:

The Rules:

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you.
  • Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  • Nominate new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award in your post/or on your blog.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.

Belle’s Questions:

What makes you the happiest about your blog?
I love taking photographs of my walks in nature, writing stories and poems, and documenting my adventures and explorations alongside quotations and prompts by others. I have so much fun doing these questions too!

What is your all time top goal?
It’s rather funny – this was the same question that was on my recent scholarship essay which I titled “Metamorphosis” inspired by a quote from Metamorphoses by Ovid, a Roman poet:

“As wave is driven by wave
And each, pursued, pursues the wave ahead,
So time flies on and follows, flies, and follows,
Always, forever and new. What was before
Is left behind; what never was is now;
And every passing moment is renewed.”

I later found this photo shared by Helene Vaillant and felt like I could relate to the profound changes a caterpillar goes through to become a butterfly.

I concluded my essay with some goals I wanted to achieve with my degree:

“By embarking on a Master of Science in technology and innovation management at NCU, this endeavor will help me reach my goals of helping my community develop a stronger cybersecurity defense line by creating a unique and new product or service that maximizes the best use of resources, time, and money. The specialization in project management will enable me keep up with the trends, implement breakthrough research and development which can serve as a catalyst for social change. “

I know my goals will evolve as I continue to live my life. On this blog, it seems that I talk the least about it. My blog serves a different purpose outside of my career path. I think my top goal here is to inspire bloggers to enjoy the writing process.

What is one thing on your bucket list?
I want to take a few weeks to go check out the vast collections at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC someday!

Aviation Hangar
Photo Credit: Dream Vacations

Where would you suggest someone go visit?
A place that my family and I have visited that I would suggest someone go visit is the Grand Canyon. Encountering its sheer magnitude from the North Rim for the first time made my jaw drop! It’s absolutely breathtaking!

Photo Credit: KeYang @ Pixabay

What do you think would make a difference to this world?

I think Gandhi was onto something when he said this. I think of our inner lives affect our actions in the world around us and nurturing the garden within us can bear fruit.

What is a hobby you wish you had more time to enjoy?
500 piece Thomas Kinkade Disney Dream collection puzzles. It’s a super magical collection and I can only manage 15 minutes a week or less. It’s a relaxing hobby for me and reading about its benefits such as “accelerated ingenuity, thought process support, dopamine production, meditation” on dumblittleman is intriguing. Yes…I should play more! 🙂

Image Credit: Barnes & Noble

What is your favorite song right now?

Earlier this month, I came across decision that made me somewhat upset, and I imagined what would it be like to be separated from those I cared about for even a short time. Although I decided to stay close to loved ones, Freya’s beautiful voice captured a piece of what I was feeling.

Standing on the platform
Watching you go
It’s like no other pain
I’ve ever known
To love someone so much
To have no control
You said I want to see the world
And I said go
I think I’m lost without you
I just feel crushed without you
I’ve been strong for so long
That I never thought how much I needed you
I think I’m lost without you
Read more: Freya Ridings – Lost Without You Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Emeli Sande’s lyrics is also currently resonating with my spirit.

You’ve got the words to change a nation
But you’re biting your tongue
You’ve spent a life time stuck in silence
Afraid you’ll say something wrong
If no one ever hears it
How we gonna learn your song?
So come, come on
Come on, come on
You’ve got a heart as loud as lions
So why let your voice be tamed?
Baby we’re a little different
There’s no need to be ashamed
You’ve got the light to fight the shadows
So stop hiding it away
Come on, Come on
Read more: Emeli Sandé – Read All About It, Pt. III Lyrics | MetroLyrics

What would you like others to know about you?

I have two dream catchers dangling above my bed. I love my dreams, always makes me ponder about life throughout my day.

Image credit: Pixabay

Have you ever written a book? What is the name of that book if so?
No, not yet, but what I hear from many authors is that writing a book an exhilarating, nerve wracking, time consuming, and rewarding experience! Ideally, I think I would want to stay in a small cabin by myself in the mountains somewhere with few distractions. I’m not sure what the solitude would do to me though. Perhaps, it would be a profound experience!

“I like the mountains because they make me feel small,’ Jeff says. ‘They help me sort out what’s important in life.”

― Mark Obmascik
Image Credit: Switzerland @ Pixabay

What is one thing that would make you happy right now?

A fruity ice cream bar! The impending summer weather is making me say that!

Image Credit: OyeHaha @ Pixabay

List 5 things you love.

Animals, Sunshine, Exploration, Writing, Loved ones, Art

Image Credit: Julius Silver @ Pixabay

11 Questions

  1. What are your plans for the the summer?
  2. What is one of your favorite posts that you’ve written on your blog?
  3. What place in the world would you want to visit?
  4. Which book had an impact on your life?
  5. If you were an animal, what animal would you be?
  6. What is your favorite memory from your childhood?
  7. What is your creative style? If you’re curious, here’s a quiz!
  8. What have you done to pursue your dreams lately? How about today?
  9. When you think of your home, what immediately comes to mind?
  10. Describe the greatest adventure of your life
  11. When did you last push the boundaries of your comfort zone?

11 Nominees

There’s no obligation to answer this award, but I wanted to recognize your beautiful blogs today and thank you for bringing some sunshine into my life. 🙂 ❤

  1. Michelle @ Mws. R Writings
  2. Subbashini Meenakshi Sundaram @ Exploring the World Around Us
  3. Ester @ Travelling Around the World
  4. Michael Ogazie
  5. Ilona @ easydiet.blog
  6. Ailish Sinclair @ Stories and Photos from Scotland
  7. Imelda @ My Wall
  8. SkyNRainbow
  9. Megan @ ESL Ventures
  10. Rachel Alexandra @ Roots and Rosemary
  11. OUKASnation
  12. RadGamer @ Rad the Poet
Posted in Culture, Dreams, flashback, Food/Recipes, Music, Quotes

#SoCs – Cozy Post-Party

Image Credit: Pixabay

Hello everyone! I’m sorry I’ve been out for two weeks. It has been a doozy and I’m tucked underneath a layer of bed sheets right now in my cozy room munching on golden jack fruit. Feeling tired might be an understatement. Stream of consciousness is all I can muster right now. 😉

Brother’s Graduation

My brother graduated from college with a degree in environmental engineering. Words cannot express how proud I am. On the day of, there was a tornado alert in the area, pouring rain was beating down on our car windshield, temporary hail pellets hit certain areas of town. There was no notice of postponement of the commencement event, so we slowly drove on the highway to our destination, an athletics stadium on campus.

Ride the storm. Cheer wildly. Gather strength from life’s storms.

Jonathan Lockwood Huie

When we arrive, we were checked by two metal detectors which made me wonder about all the precautions that have to be taken considering all the mass shootings in the nation. The thought of it made me feel a bit somber though safer, and these rows of security guards at the entrances made me feel a sense of awe.

We took our seats far up and back as the live brass band was playing in the background. I munched on some almonds as I listened to the commencement speeches. There were three wonderful speakers:

  • The first was a beautiful young lady who reminisced about who experiences during college and concluded with a message of kindness and gratitude.
  • The second was a young man who was determined to build an Iron Man suit and shared with the audience some of his life lessons of preparation.
  • The third and final speaker was an engineering professor who shared a powerful story of what happens when you fearlessly respond with “yes and if” to life’s great opportunities. We also got to see a fun clip of him playing in a blue grass band.

Engineers. Problem-solvers. They never cease to amaze me. I left that stadium feeling inspired. Tons of pictures with friends and family. Then onto the grad party next day. A feast takes a lot of work especially when you decide to do it at home instead of a restaurant. Time management works towards your advantage as event planning can be seen as an operation of sorts.

Preparing for an Extravaganza

Mom and I woke up early morning, 6 am and 7 am respectively, and began cooking, cleaning, prepping while everyone was running errands for supplies. We invited a variety of guests with a variety of dietary needs. We created a buffet with several dishes filling up our dining table throughout the morning and afternoon:

  • Banh hoi – rice vermicelli woven into intricate bundles with chopped scallions or garlic chives sauteed in oil typically served with a complementary meat dish and either soy sauce or a homemade fish sauce
  • Crab and Asparagus Soup – filled with other fresh ingredients of quail eggs, ginger, chicken
  • Glass Noodle Stir Fry – translucent noodles fried with chicken and tons of veggies
  • Xoi lac xua – Steamed peanut sticky rice with coconut milk
  • Fried chicken, grilled pork, jumbo shrimp, and beef
  • Fried rice- using a new technique mom learned from a friend
  • Fruit trays – watermelon, jackfruit, grapes
  • Che Thai fruit cocktail– sweet dessert filled with gelatin, chia seeds, longan fruit
  • Che Dau Van – Vietnamese Lentil bean dessert
  • Fresh spring rolls – vermicelli, pork, lettuce, cucumber, cilantro, carrots, crunchy egg roll with a peanut butter sauce

My brother and I tested the audio system he borrowed for karaoke by singing a few fun duets such as “Aladdin’s A Whole New World” and a variety of other Disney songs.

I arranged citronella candles to repel bugs on the tables and set up chairs and tables outside while dad mowed the yards. We strategically placed a variety of ice chests around the house: filled with beer, soda, water, fruit drinks. Wine bottles were ready to go. I arranged and cut fresh flowers to put in vases and cleaned up the house with a wide array of cleaning products. There was fresh towels and soap in the restrooms. I clean up the guest bedroom for the guests that want to take a nap. (which wasn’t going to include me!) 🙂

We all eventually took a shower to wash away our sweat, mud, flour, food coloring. I freshened up my face with makeup, styled my hair, and donned on a pretty red, black, and white floral dress that hugged my body. I suddenly became a hostess along with the rest of my family members as we welcomed our guests.

It’s Showtime!

It was my job to make sure everyone was well-fed serving as waitress and scanning the rooms to anticipate needs. Refilling drinks, inquiring about food allergies, offering napkins, utensils, picking up trash, etc. Though I’m fairly reserved, I can be quite a conversationalist. I walked around and outside the house chatting to everyone making sure no one felt left out. I learned more about their studies, work, interests, and hobbies. It seemed to be a networking activity as well as I gave out job referrals and we exchanged information and contact information.

My brother who graduated was the emcee for the night engaging the guests in songs, rap battles, stories and shared input and feedback as to post graduation goals. He shared the good news of his three job offers, and he was weighing

My other brother was in charge of games and entertainment for young adults. He set up video games, board games, card games and managed the crowd. Activities are time flexible as we gauged the crowd’s emotions. When you get a lot of laughs from the latest trending game for instance, it’s a green light to continue. Otherwise, it’s time to move on.

Dad managed the outdoor crowd for the older adults who are more interested in slower paced activities. They sat outside in the gazebo thoughtfully engaging with questions about life and philosophy. Mom managed the group of ladies who tried on some new fashionable clothing and perfume. They chatted about the new adventures they had about motherhood and exchanged tips and advice.

By the end of the day, presents were opened and shared as we ate a delicious, light, fluffy, fruit cake that we got from Mozart’s Bakery. Our guests thanked us for the night and gradually began to leave as I bid them farewell. My sister was in charge of cleaning up as we helped her pick up trash and store the china. We finally got some shut-eye around midnight.

Mozart’s Bakery

My Birthday

The day after my brother’s grad party was my birthday! This year was a small affair due to the fact I didn’t want to steal my brother’s thunder, and frankly, I was tired from the previous night. I asked my siblings if we can hang out in our living room in our pajamas, eat some leftover cake, and re-watch one of my favorite Korean dramas:

Image Credit: Jae-Ha Kim Journalistic Review

I am now 31 years old, and I’m feeling all sorts of things. My siblings and I reconnected on a deeper level which I personally felt was a dream come true. Our communication with one another improved after we spent time apart reflecting on a variety of things and life events. Reading things in the media affected how we treated each other in good and bad ways. My parents are adjusting to their “empty nest” as we are moving out of our childhood home one by one. We have wonderful stories and experiences in this house. They are getting ready to retire, as we are beginning our lives and careers.

Bus Ride Home

I treated myself to some lotions for my hard working hands and feet. I reinvested in myself by attending an inspirational career training and enrolling in a master’s program. I sat near the window of the bus pensively staring at the grasslands. I started to chat to the guy next to me when I saw an interesting t-shirt. I noticed he had only one arm. I was inspired as I listened to his thoughts and hobbies. Later at another stop, a blind man sits in front of us. I was impressed by his vision for what he wanted to accomplish in his life: owning his own business. He, too, had an inspiring story to share as I was captivated by his blue eyes. I was amazed by the company that I had during my trip. I hope to learn more from them soon!

As I reached town, I rested and joined my study group later in the evening. They treated me to a delicious wholesome birthday bowl from “The Good Kind: Modern Market and Cafe” as I designed a logo for our group and studied security issues.

Life continues, and isn’t this a lovely tropical bowl!? 😀

Posted in Events, Food/Recipes, Nature, Photography, poetry

A-to-Z Challenge: Hibiscus


#Quadrille – Not So Easy, Ace

Ace,
Elusive conundrum
Encumbered by your gold standard
When did three little lines
that form the letter “A”
dominate our lives?
Iconoclasts have grown
within your regime
Our pursuit towards the
milieu of achievement
has developed our acumen
Sine qua non
in certain realms

Alright, my poem may be a tad dramatic! 😉 Today, I was collaborating with my study group at a beautiful venue downtown called The Pearl. The city recently finished building a water park which lights up at night for the kids to play in. I’ve been thinking about joining the yoga group that meets out here on the AstroTurf at night.

Photo Credit: Lorraine Elliot
Please check out her site for more information about the Pearl Brewery!
She has high quality photos that will show all the various shops and fantastic cuisine there 🙂

One of my study buddies treated me to a gourmet “Raspberry Hibiscus Donut” from a place called Maybelle’s Donuts after I excitedly pointed out that I’ve never seen a donut like this one before! According to readers of the city’s magazine, Maybelle’s has been honored with the “Best Donut award” in the “Best of the City” category.

This artisan donut just seemed unique to me because I enjoy taking pictures of hibiscus flowers and drinking hibiscus tea. I even had a strange dream where a hibiscus flower was chatting to me insisting that I call her Hibi for short. 🙂 However, I never heard of it being an ingredient in desserts. It was certainly delicious and tart!

Previous Posts in 2019 A to Z Challenge 
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

In response to:

Posted in Awards, flashback, Food/Recipes, Quotes

Sunshine Blogger #4 from Keep It Alive

The greatest discovery of my generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes.

William James

Good morning! A few days ago, I was celebrating a friend’s birthday at a movie theater by seeing another superhero movie: Aquaman. Again, I loved the visual effects, the action, the laughs, and adventure!

My fourth Sunshine Blogger nomination is from Sadje from Keep It Alive! Thanks Sadje! She has some lovely stories as she weaves three or four tales a day from various word and photo prompts! She is a prolific writer and a popular lady here on the blogosphere.

What is the Sunshine Blogger Award?
“The Sunshine Blogger Award is given to those who are creative, positive, and inspiring, while spreading sunshine to the blogging community.”

Once nominated, if you choose to accept, write a post where you:

  • Thank the person who nominated you for the Sunshine Award and link back to their blog
  • Answer the questions set by the person who nominated you
  • Nominate other blogs and give them questions to answer
  • Notify your nominees through social media or commenting on their blog
  • List the “rules” and display a Sunshine Award logo in your post

Sadje’s interesting questions are as follows:

Which one, do you feel is your best post?

Objectively, I’m going to my stats for this. I don’t visit it too often so this is a surprise to me! My top 5 posts outside of my About page are:

Subjectively, I’ve enjoyed the process of writing each post and taking or finding pictures for each one. I love the stunning flowers I take pictures of. Such beauty is hard to rank. I feel that I can do better with time. 🙂

How do you get inspiration for writing?

Many things inspire me in a multitude of ways! It can be almost anything since I’m fascinated by a lot of topics and easily amused. I love it when I find obscure connections between current events! Photographs, artwork, illustrations, life experiences I want to make sense of, relationships, jokes, food, my educational experiences, books I’ve read, my travels, television shows, movies, quotes, other’s blog posts, random ideas that pop into my head and I want to explore them further by writing about it.

If given a choice would you choose traveling by train or ship?

I enjoy travelling by train! I like to cozy up with a book as I pass by beautiful scenery. I easily get sea-sick by ship and have to take motion sickness pills. I once went crab fishing with my aunt in North Carolina and the rockiness of the boat made me vomit most of the afternoon. However, I’ve always wondered what a cruise ship would feel like! Maybe it’s a smoother experience!

Are you an early bird or a night owl?

Angry Birds – The early bird gets the worm… and turns it into a friend.

Generally an early bird! 🙂 I’m far more productive in the morning!

Which would you say is the best part of your life?

I cherish time spent with my relationships in nature. I enjoy travelling and having fun with my family, my roommates, my friends, and my boyfriend. I’ll share more stories about them later!

How was life in childhood for you?

Photo Credit: Realtor.com

I had a very charming and idyllic childhood for the most part. I was raised in a suburb of Dallas, Texas. In the cul-de-sac, my neighbors came from a variety of countries. It takes a village to raise a child. I was raised by teachers of all sorts of subjects, professors, engineers, doctors, bank tellers, business owners, mechanics, hotel housekeepers from a melting pot of religious and ethnic backgrounds. We all looked out for one another and I felt safe. We talked about many subjects underneath the sun when I would stop by to visit or when some of them babysat me.

They also had children my age. Playing with them was a blast! We had water gun fights, roller bladed in the sidewalks, played baseball, basketball, soccer. The girls would have long talks hanging out on the bed of my friend’s dad’s red truck till the moon popped up. We played outside for hours. Sometimes we stop to feed the ducks in the lake nearby. I am very fortunate to have such rich and vivid memories.

My loving parents worked hard to give us wonderful experiences. My siblings and I are close. My parents doted on and cared for us very well, and I’ve always felt loved and happy even though we weren’t rich. It was filled with fun family parties, road trip adventures, a wide range of music, fishing trips, visits to libraries and museums, and a love of nature.

My dad loves to grow several types of fruit trees around the perimeter of our backyard. I would help him take care of the flower and vegetable garden where we grew squash, peppers, eggplant, lettuce, mint. I would harvest the fruit off the trees and we would share our surplus with our friends and other family members. He also taught me lessons in construction, mathematics, and mechanics.

My mom was a stay-at-home homemaker while working as a seamstress on the side. I learned a lot of domestic skills. I basically learned how to sew my own clothes and other neat things. I would have fun cooking gourmet meals and baking wonderful treats with mom in the kitchen.

Are you a coffee person or a tea addict?

I don’t drink coffee at all, but I do love tea! It’s a wonderful stimulant to get me going in the mornings nearly every day. It also relaxes me when I might be going through some stressful moments. I also love to invite friends over for tea and cookies while we catch up with each other’s lives.

Food that you cannot resist?

Oh! I am a foodie! I love a variety of dishes as well as a lot of desserts! I love various types of pasta, seafood, breakfast food, lightly whipped desserts like eclairs or tarts.

What should be the first thing a child be taught?

There’s so much to teach children! However, I think some important lessons a child should learn is to show gratitude, respect, kindness, and be a life long learner. If they throw a tantrum, they should learn that they will not always get what they want by acting rudely.

How are you enjoying blogging?

I love it very much and find it more rewarding than other social media sites I’ve tried. I feel like I can express my thoughts more easily here. I’m thankful to you for being a great community! Right now, it’s fun to write stories for an audience.

What are your ambitions for your blog?

It’s an evolving entity. I would love to collaborate with other bloggers on a project of sorts. Perhaps we can tackle a challenge together and write our accounts. Someday, I might invite bloggers to write on my blog about a particular topic.

I want to incorporate some thorough book/movie reviews of some books/movies that I’ve recently read. I want to write more about my studies in depth and explore more literature which is a passion of mine. I want to be more comfortable expressing opinions about a variety of other subjects. I do a lot of sketch work as well and would love to share that with all of you!

I also hope I can also spread more sunshine and beauty to your lives by sharing inspiring quotes, snapping pictures that leave me in awe, or sharing stories that have touched my heart.

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 Books, Culture, Events, Nature

White Elephant #5

Teresa from The Haunted Wordsmith created a lovely event tag called White Elephant for the holiday season. I see this as a way for me to express appreciation for other bloggers I follow. 

For Donatella @ Donatellasansalone, when my tutor at school told me his travels and about the fashion of Italy, I didn’t truly understand what he was talking about. After seeing your blog, I finally get it! Thanks for the follow and thank you so much for sharing your bold fashion choices, your articles on beauty, travel, and lifestyle. For you, I thought you might enjoy a pop of yellow. 🙂

Fendi Micro Leather Yellow Satchel

For Dominique @ 3CStyle, thank you for sharing with us the difference between style and fashion helped by the quote of Oscar De La Renta. I look forward to learning more about sustainable fashion. Your experience as a scientific journalist has brought another unique perspective to the fashion industry. I want to share with you a photo that reminds me of your project, “When Fashion and Nature Collide”

Merging: A Photo Series of the humans being as a certain part of nature
 Masha Reva – Fashion Photography with Synchrodogs

For Mr.A @ The Barbarian Gentleman, it’s been fascinating reading about your journey on becoming a better man. Thank you for sharing your thoughts which gave me insight into other aspects of what some men may face. I thought you might enjoy this book! 🙂

Posted in Books, Culture, flashback, Quotes

Sunshine Blogger Award!

Wow! Again, I feel humbled and honored. Thank you! I have been nominated by Laura Bailey who posts about her musings, adventures, hiking, a love of Ireland, and other experiences. 🙂 I enjoy her poetry! I’ve been grateful for her prompts which were a guide in several of my stories here on this blog. She’s a resilient woman who “wears many shoes” which inspired the title of her blog, “All the Shoes I Wear“. She’s been a supportive, encouraging influence on the blogosphere. We enjoy her sense of humor and her presence!

What is the Sunshine Blogger Award?  The Sunshine Blogger Award is given to bloggers by other bloggers who are creative, positive, and inspiring.

Sunshine Blogger Award Rules:
-Thank the blogger who nominated you.
-Answer the 11 questions asked.
-Nominate 5 other bloggers and ask them 5 new questions.
-List the rules and include the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post.

Who is your best friend and what do you have in common?
My best friend’s name is Rose. We met when we were teenagers in the cafeteria of the middle school we both attended and 18 years later, we’re still friends today. We’ve been through a lot together. We also supported and encouraged each other to reach our wildest dreams! Recently attended her wedding! Though we have our differences, we also have quite a bit in common!

rose and IAvid readers & curious, questioning minds
Long distance runners on the track team
Enjoy the arts such as singing & painting
Love to sew & design our own fashions
Traveled to France when we were kids
Enjoy Celine Dion’s songs
Compassionate & sensitive personalities
Come from big families with varied personalities
Christ followers though different spiritual backgrounds

What is your favorite place to go and why?
Tough one to answer because I’ve traveled to many places that I love! So, I’m going to go with a favorite location nearest to me: the Riverwalk. I love walking along the path next to this man-made river in the city at night. I love how it’s crackling with activity at the restaurants and bars! I enjoy listening to the mariachi bands that occasionally play their romantic ballads on stage. I love watching the cosplayers walk around in their unique, hand-made outfits during anime convention season.
Riverwalk

If you watch television, what is your favorite show?
Again, tough one to answer because I’ve watched a lot of engaging shows in the past! I like a lot of stuff! So I’ll just go through a FEW here. 🙂
Unbreakable Kimmy Schimdt is hilarious!
unbreakable-kimmy-schmidt
Chuck is also a funny comedy I enjoy!
chuck
Just finished watching “Haven” which totally caught my attention with its sci-fi mystery and connection to Steven King’s story “The Colorado Kid”.
haven.jpg
Also, I have a fascination with Korean dramas! I finished “Strong Woman Do Boon Soon”, “Man to Man”, ” 12 Years Promise”

Life does not feel complete without the Star Trek Voyager crew!
voycastyear04

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is an exciting tale of the aftermath of two brothers trying to revive their mother from the dead.
Fmab-poster

What is the book that you would recommend that everyone read?
Difficult to choose because it depends on the person! The bible has impacted my life… “Teachings on Love” by Thich Nhat Hanh
thich2

What is your favorite thing to do on a daily basis?
I’m a tactile person. I love messing with these two-toned glitter throw pillows! Rubbing my hands back and forth over the sequins helps me relieve stress. It’s oddly satisfying… 🙂

glitter pillows
Picture from Aliexpress.com

Share an interesting fact about your life.
I once built and programmed a Lego robot that could push small balls.
lego2

What is one word that describes you best? Explain.
Broad-minded. 🙂 My posts have demonstrated this quality.
idea.png

If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be and why?
I’m very blessed, and there’s not much I would change, though I want to change jobs eventually. I would like a job that would pay me for what I deserve, allow me to develop my talents and interests, and open up new avenues for exploration.
explore

What do you consider to be the priority of your life?
Family, Faith, Learning

Tell us your favorite author and why.
These questions have got to be more specific! There are so many favorites that I have in each genre:

  • Michael Crichton: Love his advanced, fast-paced, sci-fi worlds
  • Dan Brown: Enjoy how his characters explores esoteric research, also action packed
  • JK Rowling: Childhood favorite- I stood in lines outside the store just to get the next Harry Potter book.
  • Douglas R. Hofstadter who wrote Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid in which the density satisfies my mathematical inclinations.I enjoy stories that have a detective as a protagonist. Rex Stout sums it up!

detective

What is one thing that you wish everyone knew about you?
Sometimes, when people first meet me they might find me boring on the surface. I feel like people have pegged me to be a certain way. Yet, I have such a wild imagination and fantasies that I’ve always wanted to pursue. 🙂
butterfly-2049567_1920.jpg

Nominations

Questions to Nominees

1) Where do you get your inspiration from?
2) Where do you draw your strength from in life?
3) Is there a meaningful book you’d recommend to your readers?
4) What is one experience that has changed the direction of your life?
5) What is one song that resonates with who you are?

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