Awards Post

I’ve been racking up a few blog awards recently and it’s time to acknowledge them, share a little bloggy love and pay it forward. I’m always touched when someone recognizes my blog and thinks enough of it to send me some attention. It’s one of the many reasons I love the community here on WordPress. Also, there was a period a few months back when life took over, so if you’ve given me an award and I missed it here, please forgive me.

I have turned into a bit of a rebel, so when it comes to blog awards, I really don’t follow the “rules.” After all, the point of these, I think, is to spread the love and learn about new blogs along the way, without creating a sense of obligation. So here’s what I like to do: recognize those who have nominated me, share a few unknown facts about myself and then nominate a few others who can accept some, all, or none of the awards that I’ve mentioned here.

The Liebster Award:


Lexa at and Daan at both nominated me for this award. Lexa is a fashion model and writes of her adventures in that world. Daan is a social networking expert and talks of his life in The Netherlands in his blog. Thanks to both of you for including me in your illustrious list of nominees!

The Reality and Shine On Awards:


My dear friend Crystal at sent these two awards my way. Crystal’s uplifting blog offers advice and insight to a life of enlightenment and happiness. Thank you, Crystal!

The 2012 Blog of the Year Award:

Blog of the Year Award 6 star jpeg

Mimi at nominated me for this award. Mimi’s blog is filled with love, wisdom, humor and an occasional music video. She sparks lots of wonderful commentary as well. Thank you, Mimi!

I encourage you to check out each of these great sites. And enjoy!
So to share a few unknown things about me (or things you might not know anyway):

  1. I am a foodie, gourmet cook and love great food.
  2. I hold a degree in Industrial Design and love color, design and graphics
  3. My favorite music is jazz, but I also love classical music and rock music
  4. I’m an avid reader and my favorite genre is historical fiction.
  5. I’m a shoe collector. Zappos is my best and worst habit.
  6. I love to ski, but also enjoy snowshoeing and I’m hoping we get snow soon!
  7. I would never jump out of a perfectly good airplane to skydive, but I feel very comfortable scuba diving 100 feet below the surface of the water.

Here are my nominees for any or all of the above awards. Take them and share or not:

There are so many others that I could include but I do encourage you to check these out. Now that I’ve been blogging for awhile, my “following” list has gotten longer and longer…

Ode to the Blogosphere” was an Editor’s Pick for October! Thank you, Michelle and WordPress! News

Narrowing down all the fantastic posts featured on Freshly Pressed in a month to just ten is a challenge, but one that we relish — it reminds us of how much great content you’ve published, and of the depth and diversity of the community. Here are some of October’s standouts:

Silk Road Ramblings: Lost Empires, Gobi Fugitives, and The Secret Meth Habit of Marco Polo

I have conquered the Silk Road—venturing through the wild frontiers of Central Asia all the way to the dynastic heart of China, through a land of unforgiving beauty and a blood-splattered past; a land of lost empires, camel caravans, mummies, treasure-filled caves, and Imperial tombs. I am a modern-day Marco Polo, except I can’t grow impressive facial hair or call people ‘Orientals’ or ‘barbarian mongrels’

We read many great posts about travel each month and scope out tons of great photography, but Backpackology gave us…

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Ligo Circle of Appreciation

Last week, Mimi at included me in the Ligo Circle of Appreciation. Somewhat different than a blog award, the Ligo Circle is a way of including and acknowledging those bloggers who have touched our lives through their blogs in a special way.

Had I received this honor from someone else, Mimi would have been on the top of my own list for inclusion. Her blog is always a favorite and when I thanked her, she said: “I was so happy to be able to give your talents some attention, Cathy. You are someone who I am sure I would befriend in the real world, and as such value you with the same tenderness that one saves for those they love.” That’s Mimi.

Mimi shares inspiration, humor, a love of family, ethics and her favorite music. When she was Freshly Pressed recently for a hilarious post about stink bugs, she was somewhat dismayed that the tag under the FP announcement for her post said “More Entomology.” But true to form, she laughed it off, accepted her reputation as a “bug” person and included a picture of a praying mantis in the follow-up post.

The only rules for the Ligo Circle of Appreciation are to invite two more bloggers into the circle and to complete the sentence: “A blog is…”

There are so many bloggers who I do include in my circle of appreciation – people who I now consider friends – people I care about and miss when they take a break from blogging. But I will choose only two for the purposes of this post and hopefully in the next few weeks, I plan to finally put together my blogroll.

I invite Julie Hansen Intuitive. I met Julie within the first month of my blogging experience here on WordPress. She shares her amazing insights and gentle wisdom on her blog and I always look forward to her posts. We have made a commitment to get together in person to share a hug and a cup of coffee at the earliest opportunity. (And if I’m not mistaken, Julie was the first person to present me with a blog award.)

And I invite Madame Weebles. Lord knows she doesn’t need the additional press. This week, she offered to throw a virtual tea party on the blogosphere and got 80 RSVPs! She’s my blogging heroine – and I’ve told her that many times. Weebs is funny, irreverent, kind (a word she uses for me but it also fits for her), a great writer and a historian. She’s also a Reiki practitioner and my friend. As busy as she has to be answering all of the comments that she gets on her blog, she always seems to be able to make the time to come over to my site and comment whenever I put up a post. And I always appreciate it.

To Julie and Weebs, I simply want you to know how much I appreciate you. Please don’t feel that you need to do anything further than to know this, but if you choose to participate, it is an honor to include you in the circle and to see who you would invite.

Finally, in my humble opinion, a blog is a place to express one’s unique world view in a way that enriches the blogger and those who come to visit.

May your blogging experiences lead you to new paths of appreciation and your circle.



On Being Freshly Pressed

Tuesday at work: Email from Michelle.
Congratulations! You have been Freshly Pressed.
Ode to the Blogosphere will be posted
in 1-2 days.
Stay focused on clients…

Wednesday: Doing email.
Notification of moderation.
James posts a comment.
Hmmm – never met James before.

Light goes on.
Check the FP page.
Art and all.

Histogram jumps.
143 views in first hour.
Comments to moderate.
Comments to answer.

Aside: Fortunately,
I am out of the office today.
My day off.
Otherwise, people would think
I had disappeared.
Note to self: If it ever happens again,
and you’re supposed to be working,
call in sick.

Cut back to Wednesday: Eat breakfast.
Reply to comments.
Eat lunch.
Reply to comments.
Workout for an hour.
Reply to comments.
Cook and eat dinner.
Reply to comments.
Go to bed.
Actually sleep.

Thursday: Things have slowed down.
Answer a few comments.
Go to work.
Ski jump histogram
returns to normal when
announcement ends at 4:00.
It marched over 32 hours,
from top left to bottom right
and then off.

Amazing stats.
Over 1100 Hits,
4 Reblogs,
50 New Followers
from around the Globe.

People liked the poem.
It spoke to them
of their own experiences.
Why they blog,
what they’ve learned.
That feels good.

A magical mystery ride.
Thanks to WordPress.
And I would have never
written a poem,
Had I not started my blog.

If you’ve ever been Freshly Pressed, has it changed your blogging experience? If you haven’t been Freshly Pressed, is it something you aspire to? Do you check out Freshly Pressed to find new blogs? Why?



More Snow

Yesterday, we got our first snow of the season here in Colorado. After being Freshly Pressed on Wednesday and Thursday, I was still joyfully replying to comments on the awarded post, and wanted to write a short poem and put up a picture before leaving for a full day of clients at the office. So I cheated and used a photo from a huge snowstorm last October.

I did confess my transgression in the comments, but my friend Clare asked me to post what my beautiful environment looks like now. By the time I got home last night, it was dark and all the snow had melted.

This morning, I was greeted by more snow and bright sunshine so here’s what I shot just a few minutes ago:

Having grown up in the South where snow is a rarity, the first Autumn storm is always a delight. For an avid skier, it means the slopes will soon be calling.

Peter and I met skiing twenty years ago (yes, on the lift) and we still share our passion. Here’s the post about that story if you’re interested. We buy a season pass and try to go up every Friday to one of our ski areas about two and a half hours away. We usually leave the house around 6 am, get to mountain about 8:30, ski like Banshees for five or six hours, have a late lunch and then head home before Friday afternoon rush hour in Denver. It’s a long day, but worth the effort for us.

Skiing is great exercise, but also a way to get outside in the winter, enjoy the magnificence of the Rocky Mountains and expose ourselves to much needed sunshine and fresh air. It keeps the cabin fever away and also keeps us in great shape.

So here are my questions for you: Have you ever tried skiing or snowboarding and if so, what is your favorite experience? If not, ever wanted to try it? Where do you like to ski or ride? If it’s a passion, why?



Freshly Pressed

Got the word Tuesday
from Michelle, the Story Wrangler.
A short gestation – one to two days.
Never thought it would happen,
Just happy to have a place to write,
to experiment, to publish all these pics.

And then the mystery of friendship,
comments, support – egging me on.
Ode to the Blogosphere
Ode to you.

Tig! I’m it!

My friend, Clare Flourish, tigged me almost two weeks ago. My apologies, Clare, for taking so long to get to this. Excuses aside, I finally have some time to devote to it. I’ve decided to ignore most of the rules of the tig, and do it my way (as Clare says, “So sue me! An appropriate comment from a former Solicitor – Clare, that is). I’m just going to answer her questions. But if you’re curious, you can go to her site and read the rules here.

Clare, part of the reason I have taken so long to write this is that your questions were very open-ended and I needed time to decide how to answer them. I know, you probably wanted a spontaneous answer – oh well…

1. Tell me something I don’t know.

Well, coming from you Clare, I’m not sure there’s much that you don’t know. I’m not kidding! Your intelligence astounds me and I have a pretty high intellect, myself. But, I think you probably meant something you don’t know about me. Hmmm, something you don’t know…I played classical guitar for over ten years, still have my beautiful guitars and if I ever quit doing bodywork, will probably get back to playing (fingernails and bodywork just don’t mix).

2. Tell me who you are.

I am a child of the Universe, continually unfolding, growing and  – honestly, these days, just learning how to be me. Which sometimes isn’t all that easy…but getting better.

3. Tell me what you love.

I think being born a 5-time Scorpio (Sun, Moon and three planets) I’ve come to realize that I love all the vibrations that my senses can show me – food, music, exercise, color, art, writing, reading – drinking in the sensual experiences of this world.

So there you go!



©CathyUlrich and LargeSelf, 2012

I’d like to thank the Hollywood Foreign Press…

Oh wait, that’s the Golden Globes.

I want to thank those who have sent awards my way and also to apologize for taking so long to get this post together. With getting ready for vacation, going on vacation and getting things done after coming back from vacation, this has been my first opportunity to assemble this post.

Katrina at Freedom to a Full Life generously nominated me for several awards in June.

The Dedicated Follower Award

The Kreativ Blogger Award

The Versatile Blogger Award.

Thank you, Katrina! Yours was one of the first blogs I followed when I joined the WordPress community and I continue to enjoy your wonderful posts. You always leave me with things to ponder.

Last week, Clare Flourish nominated me for this beautiful award:

The One Lovely Blog Award

Thank you, Clare. Your insights and dedication to honest and heartfelt dialogue inspires, stimulates and enlightens and I so enjoy your perspective.

Finally, Athena Brady sent this wonderful award my way:

The Fabulous Blog Ribbon

Thank you, Athena for your friendship and wisdom. I love the topics that you discuss (Angels, miracles and dreams to name just a few) and your viewpoint.

I have decided to pick just one blogger for each of these awards today to bestow a nomination (except for Clare for which I nominate twice), but I am creating a BlogRoll of some of my favorite blogs on a separate page and I also am creating a page for my awards where I will permanently acknowledge those who have honored me with these lovely awards and display them proudly.

For those of you nominated, please know that I am offering this award as a way of honoring your work in the WordPress community. If you feel that you would like to participate, please acknowledge my nomination with a link-back and feel free to nominate as many or as few blogs as you feel appropriate. If you don’t wish to participate, that’s fine too. My desire is to spread the word about your blog, but not to create any stress or added work for you. My feeling is that these awards provide a way for us to find each other and learn of the amazing wealth of creativity and diversity in the blogosphere. So pass it forward if you are so inclined. Finally, one of the common threads (sets of rules) throughout these awards is to share things about ourselves that may not be known through our blogs so I’ll share those at the end of this post.

So without any further delay:

For The Dedicated Follower Award, I nominate Russ Towne – A Grateful Man. I think Russ is probably the only person who has read every post on my blog! His comments are always appreciated and I so enjoy his blog. It is filled with humor, love, and inspiration. Thank you, Russ for being here.

For The Kreativ Blogger Award, I nominate Russel Ray Photos  Russel is a wonderful photographer who lives in San Diego and shares his love of that beautiful city along with his fantastic flowers and his cat Zoey. (I’m a sucker for the cat pictures.) He’s funny, interesting and always entertaining.

For The Versatile Blogger Award and The Kreativ Blogger Award, I nominate Clare Flourish. She is a gifted writer who shares her perspectives on her life as a Trans Woman as well as her viewpoints on religion. She always leaves me with a lot to think about.

For The One Lovely Blog Award, I nominate Cooking Intuitive written by Julie Hansen. Juie’s primary blog, Julie Hansen Intuitive is where she shares her insights and experience as an intuitive healer. Cooking Intuitive is her wonderful inspirations with food. Her ideas are fun, easy and tasty – and for those of you who adhere to a vegetarian or vegan diet, Julie’s blog is a wealth of information.

For The Fabulous Blog Ribbon, I nominate Searunner. I love his photos from around the world.

Thank you, again, to my nominators and congratulations to all of my nominees and thanks for all the blessings you bring to me.

So a few things about me:

1. I love just about any food with the exception of a handful of things – and Rutabaga turnips is at the top of the list (of things I won’t eat, that is).

2. My favorite music genre is jazz.

3. In my twenties and thirties, I was a competitive runner.

4. I bought new skis this year – Volkl Kenjas and I LOVE them!

5. I like to write with a fountain pen.

I think that’s it for now!



The Commenter/Commentator Awards

The Commenter/Commentator Award

This week, Gina V., at Gina’s Professions for PEACE awarded me the blogging Commenter Award. It’s an honor to be recognized by Gina since she is such a wonderful commenter. She encourages dialogue on her site and responds to every comment. She’s truly a role model for all of us!

Now, to pay it forward, I’m pleased to announce my nominations of four fabulous bloggers who inspire me with their posts as well as the commentary that they stimulate and support on their sites as well as mine.

FearNoWeebles – Often humorous, sometimes poignant and always interesting. Madame Weebles has become known in the blogosphere as the founder of the “Hot Dead Guys Sweet Sixteen Tournament.”

JulieHansenIntuitive – Julie shares wonderful intuitive insights and gentle teachings that enlighten and uplift.

ElisaCashiola – A placement designer, Feng Shui master and fabulous photographer, Elisa’s blog is visually appealing and informs of energy in the home and garden.

HealthyandHolistic – A lifestyle blog focusing on healthy choices. One of my recent favorites was a great post on caring for orchids including lovely photos of my favorite house plants.

Thank you all for your contributions to my life. I enjoy our interaction. Your commitment to commentary is what makes the blogosphere rich and rewarding.

Because my nominator, Gina, put it so well, I’m going to simply repeat what she has said about the “rules” for the award:  “A note about rules and such, please know that it is standard practice (and very good for karma ) to thank the one who nominated you and provide a link back to their site in your post. Then to offer your nominees with links to their blogs as well. Other than that, well I am going to stay true to who I really am at heart, and release the need to follow rules to the letter when I know that really, at their essence, awards are simply generated to help us bloggers find other like-minded individuals and share the love around. And please know, all my dear nominees, to feel welcome to participate if it brings you joy. Otherwise allow the compliment and kudos to bring a smile, and then let it go. This is simply about sharing some of our favorite blogs with each other.”