My lovely friend AnnMarie over at Anntogether has shared the joy with me by nominating me for a “Lovely Blog” award. In her nomination she called me a “strong, intelligent matriarch whom I admire greatly” (which as you can imagine brought tears to my eyes). There are days when I don’t think I am either of those things, but I write from my heart and am strengthened by knowing that my words resonate with others.

Part of the joy of this award is getting to pass it on to other bloggers who have impacted or inspire me. This is my short list (there are many more, but I have to draw the line somewhere):

Peace, love and patchouli is home to the most wonderful poetry ever.
Mast musings shares thoughtful and brave commentaries on the world, and knows just the right comment to make to pick me up
Laurel at My Foray Into Food shares delicious recipes, wonderful contests through her affiliates, and teaches us how to plan ahead by buying and storing food for the long haul. Her planning inspires me.
Simply said messages is a new blog by an old friend whose courage gives me hope.
the happy lifealcoholic Adi is a tiny 20-year old from India, studying and writing delightful poetry (and chattering non-stop) in the United States.
Rose of Sharon Healing With a heart for healing and exquisite photographs, she educates us about her adopted country of Korea
Ty Spaeth is madly in love with her granddaughter, and it shows! We are grandmothers together.

With this award comes a bit of homework, so as assigned, here are seven things you probably don’t know about me (my sister and daughter probably do, but they have always had an inside track). My nominees — you will need to do this, too, if you want to play along.

One: Many years ago I wrote a children’s book called Boomerschnitzel the Bashful Elf. He hangs out with his best friends, the fairy Felicity and Freddy the Frog. My children enjoyed it when they were babies, and someday I’ll get around to trying to publish it.

Two: My “dream” vehicle (if I win the lottery, perhaps) is a 1955 Chevy, pearl gunmetal grey with deep purple pin-striping and shadow flames across the hood.

Three: My favorite truck (so far) was my little red Chevy S-10 with the KLUMSYK8 license plates…I bought her after Joseph totaled my Oldsmobile, and Grant said, “I don’t care if you buy a new truck, just as long as it isn’t a red one.” The red one was the best buy on the lot — really!

When my S-10 was two weeks old, Donnie, Georgia and I drove to Holbrook, AZ, for the Pender Family Reunion.  She didn't even have real plates yet!

When my S-10 was two weeks old, Donnie, Georgia and I drove to Holbrook, AZ, for the Pender Family Reunion. She didn’t even have real plates yet!

Four: I learned to drive a stick shift down on Oceano Beach in Jack Barker’s dad’s International Scout. That thing had a gear box that was sturdy enough to survive the worst teenaged girl’s attempts at smooth shifting. It was also a real bear to drive, had the world’s worst shocks, and I absolutely loved it.

How did I end up with three “vehicle” things here, anyway?

Five: Of all the wild critters in the world, crickets scare me the most. I think this stems from a “story” I told Mom one afternoon in maybe second grade, where I assured her this father cricket had invited me into his home to meet his family on the way home from school. I told her all about visiting with his wife and children and seeing where they lived (under the ground…do crickets really live under the ground?). When Mom suggested that this was perhaps me wanting to be able to visit the crickets in their home, I adamantly insisted that I had really done it! Neither of us would back down, and I ended up in trouble. I have mistrusted crickets ever since.

Six: If I won the Lottery big-time (after buying my truck in Fact #Two above), my dream has always been to buy a piece of property to turn into a family compound, with homes for my siblings and our children and their families (Daddy, too, of course). Our immediate clan has such good boundaries that we could all live close by and still respect each other’s privacy. Of course, it would need to be within the sound of the ocean’s waves.

Seven: Someday I hope to make money with my writing. When I think of how hard Louisa May Alcott worked to make her “scribbling” pay, I am heartened. And you, my dear audience, have encouraged me and urged me to continue, and I treasure you for that.

Okay, AnnMarie…my part is done. Thank you again for honoring me, and helping me pass the joy on to others.