Archive for the ‘Awards’ Category

Thank you… Thank you very much

Well, this is nice. There are more awards going on here at The Adventures of Danda and Yaya. Which is always good. Let it be noted that I never turn my nose up at an award. Are you all listening? This award is given courtesy of Jane’s Journal, a fairly new blog on the scene. Definitely take the time to check it out. And the award is one I’ve not been given before so it’s very exciting. It’s the Shine On award.
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And the rules are as follows:
1. Display the award logo on your blog.

2. Link back to the person who nominated you.

3. State 7 things about yourself.

4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them.

Ok, seven things about myself. Here goes:

1. This evening I watched World War Z and I liked it a lot. I was very nervous for a lot of it. But good nervous. You know?

2. I came THIRD in the pub quiz the other night. Third. Shoddy.

3. I’m at the point in my blogging career where I blog about my attendance at the weekly pub quiz. Shoddy.

4. Sometimes, when I do blogs with loads of photos in, it means I’m having a lazy day. So now you all know.

5. Tonight I forgot about dinner so I ate a massive cookie and a little pit of jelly. Both were homemade. Does that make it any better? The jelly I made completely from scratch, stewed down some cherries and blueberries and everything.

6. In the pub, during the pub quiz, there was the best bulldog I’ve ever seen. He was immense.
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7. My surname spelt backwards says Yes I Am. I know I’ve mentioned that before but you can never say it too many times.

And now my nominations. I mat not get to 15. Let’s see how it goes:

1. Misc. Maggie – because she’s wonderful and talked me through a rough time recently. Thank you xx

2. The Waiting – just get over there and check her out, she rocks my world.

3. Biancalovefoodlovefashion – what’s not to love here? Fashion advice for the unfashionable (me) and foodie pics.

4. Champagne and Dhokla – this blogger is brand new on the scene and has but one (fabulous) post to her name so far. Let’s show her a bit of blogging love and pay her a visit.

5. Alex Jones – lovely, honest, inspiring blogging with a bit of running up hills at the crack of dawn to share the sunrise with us.

6. KindredSpirit23 – a man who has come a long way from a difficult time a few years ago and has a few published stories to his name.

7. Miss Apis Mellifera – come on, everyone, you knew this was coming. The beekeeper in me had to nominate this blog.

8. Ordinary Lisa – good honest blogging and summer of fun that I am looking forward to reading.

9. Tokyobling – fabulous photos of Japanese life and lots of learning to be done.

10. (un)certainties – these two lovely Colombia-based people will be far too busy to pass on this award but their travels and experiments are great to read so head over and check them out.

11. Under The Skies of Arkansas – beautiful pictures of a beautiful countryside

12. Outside Air – recent trip to Italy won it for me, even before the vegetable patch in her new house and the honesty of remembering that no-one’s life is perfect, even if it seems it in the blogging world.

13. The Usual Bliss – her patio, her patio is what has gained her this nomination. Her patio is a patio to be envied. I have patio envy.

14. The Better Man Projects – lovely quotes that pick me up when I feel bored with things/defeated.

15. Campari and Sofa – well, they hosted me on their fantastic blog earlier this week. So obviously they’re in my list…..!

Ok all, go out into the world. Be fruitful and read many of the blogs mentioned. Let’s have a bit of a blog love-in.

Madame Forager does Leibster

Ok, it’s awards time again! This time it’s the Leibster Award from the fabulous Mark Lord. Check out his blog for beautifully written thoughts on life, etc.

First I must tell you 11 facts about myself so here goes:

1. When it comes to chocolate, I always go dark.

2. I’m currently reading about five million books.

3. I recently went foraging (twice) and now feel myself to be some sort of foraging expert, known to the world as Madame Forager.

4. I own tons of cookbooks.

5. I think tomatoes are brilliant.

6. In my other life, I would have been a farmer with lemon groves and olive trees in Tuscany.

7. I love a good programme about hoarding. Love it. It makes me not worry about my rough-around-the-edges front room.

8. I also love a good animal-attack programme. I Was Bitten was a particular favourite.

9. I’m rubbish at buying shoes for myself. I’m too lazy to put any thought into it so they’re always slightly wrong, somehow.

10. Reality talent shows depress me.

11. My brother’s friend had two cats called Phoebe and Katy, which I thought was way cool when I was younger.

Next I answer 11 questions posed to me by Mark.

1. What is your earliest lingering memory?
Shouting “Amy!” while standing on top of a little grassy hill at infant school.

2. Is there a person from History you admire more than any other and if so, why do you admire them?
He’s not that historical because he’s still alive but his name is Clive Stafford Smith and he’s fabulous. Google him.

3. Do you have a hobby that is unrelated to your work? And if so, what is it?
I volunteer at Ham House. It’s great fun. More fun than anything I’ve done in ages.

4. How many houses have you lived in, including your current?
Seven.

5. How do you think you might fair on University Challenge?
O man. Pretty badly. I try doing it every so often and I’m abysmal. Which always confuses me. I’m certain I’ll get more than three but I never do.

6. Is there another time in History you’d like to live ? When would it be and why?
The Romans were fascinating. I love Roman history. It’s a different question of whether I would have actually wanted to live then! There’s plenty of things about how we live now that make me think I’m happiest being in the here and now.
7. How long do you spend on the net per day?
I check my emails on my phone but I very rarely sit down and use the internet as such. Probably only once or twice a week for about twenty minutes each.

8. If you could run your country, what would be the first act of your Premiership?
Um. Processed food is banned. Additives are outlawed. People must be nice to each other.

9. Do you have a favourite record? If so, which is it?
Anything MJ. Possibly Man In The Mirror. But I’m in a very James Blake place right now.

10. Who has been the biggest influence on your life so far?
Hard to say.

11. Why do you blog?
To have something that is my own and to inject creativity into my every day.

The next section of the Leibster Award, I’m going to cheat on a bit because I love the blogs I read regularly and have put them up for awards a ton of times. So I’m just going to draw your attention to my favourites, which you should all check out and if the nominees want to get in on the Leibster action, you can use the same questions from above.

Biancalovefoodlovefashion

Someone Fat Happened

The Waiting

Kindredspirit23

As Time Goes… Buy

Fiammisday

The Usual Bliss

Ordinary Lisa

Outside Air

Hungryhinny

Thebettermanproject

Y is for….

YEHHHH!

(That’s me cheering because I’ve been nominated for another award.)

This time it’s the Super Sweet Blogging Award, given to me by WealthyMatters. Thank you so much!

First I have to answer the blog award questions so here goes…

Cookies or Cake?

Oo, tough. I guess biscuits, for dipping into tea.

Chocolate or Vanilla?

Vanilla

What is your favorite sweet treat?

Anything home baked. You can’t beat it. Banana bread muffins, flapjacks, gingerbread….

When do you crave sweet things the most?

About 4pm. Afternoon munchies.

If you had a sweet nickname, what would it be?

Um. I dunno. Flapjack face…?

Ok, next up is my baker’s dozen of blog nominations. These are specifically ones which I have used for their recipes or that I like to read because of the beautiful pictures of food.

1. Biancalovefoodlovefashion – O, the bagels! O, the breakfasts! The loveliness….

2. Hungryhinny – I hardly know where to look. The recent spate of chocolate posts has made me very happy, as did this apple tart, which had me dribbling on my computer screen.

3. Prettygirlscook – I first noticed this blog when Italy was mentioned and I have not looked back since. Posts from the latest trip, to New Orleans, was a feast for the eyes.

4. Copycatmom – This is not necessarily a foodie blog but the recent challenge to eradicate processed food has made for fantastic reading. I loved the post about making ketchup.

5. Eat-move-love – this is a great blog for anyone looking for advice about healthy eating and exercise.

6. Thelittleloaf – O. My. Goodness. How amazing does this salmon and avocado on rye bread look?

7. Le Zoe Musings – Again, not a food blog but the posts which do contain food are beautiful.

8. Rantings of an Amateur Chef – Lovely lovely food. I wish this man was my personal chef.

9. Yes Chef! – I love taking a peek into this kitchen. I love the pictures of the family and I love looking at the things they eat.

10. Fitness and Frozen Grapes – She runs, she bikes, she swims, she writes, she cooks, she’s health and fitness embodied! I love when she writes about food on her blog.

11. Bagni di Lucca – It’s about Italy and there are pictures of food. I’m happy!

12. Pepper Bento – Fabulous looking food in cute little boxes. Brilliant!

I am the Queen of everything

Well… Sort of… I’ve been nominated for the Liebster Award. That’s basically the same thing, right? Thanks to Maggie Thom for the nomination!

So here we go, let’s do this thing.

The Rules of the Award:

1. Post eleven facts about yourself.

2. Answer the questions the tagger has set for you and create eleven questions for people you’ve nominated.

3. Choose eleven people with fewer than 200 followers to give this award to and link them in your post.

4. Go to their page and tell them.

5. Remember, no tag backs.

11 Facts about me:

1. I had braces on my teeth when I was about twelve. Once I got a scarf stuck on the top ones.

2. Once, my gym knickers fell out of my bag onto my desk in front of the Maths teacher. That was pretty horrific.

3. I totally want to live on a farm.

4. I once went out with a man who got irate if he tried to run in front of me to open a door and I said, “It’s ok, I’ve got it.” He said I was emasculating him by not letting him open the door for me!

5. I used to own loads of jodhpurs and tell people I went horse riding a lot. I went about twice ever.

6. I want a chicken in my back garden to get eggs from!

7. I know the man who voiced Pingu.

8. I am going to Italy’s Amalfi coast in three weeks and I am very excited!

9. I love walking along the river. Sometimes I dream of just taking a month off work and walking along the river every day until I get to the sea.

10. I once got roared at by a lion in the wild. Epic.

11. My ideal career would be some kind of farmer/baker/pianist/human rights lawyer. Any ideas how I can get those all into one?

11 Questions from Maggie Thom:

1. What makes you smile?
When children are at that stage where they can’t quite pronounce things properly but they just sit babbling away to you and it’s anyone’s guess what they’re going on about. Hilarious!

2. What’s your favorite song?
Oo, hard one. Songs I like always remind me of something so it’s less about the song, more about the memory. I’m pretty keen on the Lion King soundtrack cause of the Namibia memories.

3. Extrovert or introvert?
Extrovert.

4. Singer in the car?
Don’t drive.

5. Weirdest thing you’ve ever done?
Made underwear out of lined paper for my barbies. I didn’t like how naked they were under their skisuits and thought the pin stripe pattern would look nice.

6. Your favorite dessert?
Oo. Um. Anything Italian and homemade. Homemade panna cotta. Homemade tiramisu. Homemade semifreddo.

7. Best book you’ve ever read?
Tender Is The Night. F. Scott Fitzgerald.

8. Best advice you’ve ever been given?
If you put your thumb and first finger out on both hands, the one which looks like an L is your left.

9. The neatest and best thing you’ve ever done for someone else?
Pass. Too boasty.

10. Something you’ve done that’s a lot of fun?
Spent a day on a farm learning how to make jam, chutney, ketchup and lemon curd.

11. If you could be anyone famous who would that be?
Clive Stafford Smith. He’s a lawyer. He’s amazing. Look him up.

My 11 nominees:

Blog The House Down – some baking, some eating, some cookies, some spinach…. It’s all going on here.

Lovefoodlovefashion – pretty things to look and to taste, what more could you want from a blog?

Greenlightlady – beautiful nature photos. Sometimes I look at the pictures of flowers and sigh, remembering that once, we used to have flowers in England, before the long winter of 2013.

Kindredspirit23 – a lovely man living with the after effects of a stroke three years ago. He’s good at fiction too.

The Better Man Project – I just like this blog. It motivates me.

20 Something, Huh? – food for thought in one’s second decade.

(un)certainties – life in a foreign land and exiting the world of money for a gift-economy existence. Good luck, guys!

Someone Fat Happened – “When a man is tired of [Maggie’s blog], he is tired of life,” Samuel Johnson

Dorset Explorer – who knew stories from retirement could be so entertaining?

The Waiting – what?! You’re not already following this blog? Come on, get involved. This blog is like a small rabibit in my heart (it will make sense when you get there).

Dan Bohmer – once a soldier in Afghanistan, now a dad at home with a little one on the way soon!

(I forgot about the 200 follower rule here and just picked people I like most. Sorry, Liebster gods.)

My 11 questions for my nominees:

1. Where should I go next on holiday?

2. How do you feel about Michael Buble?

3. Do you think that’s really his name or did he just say the word bubble in a French accent and liked it?

4. What is your favourite fairground ride?

5. If we were on the bumper cars, would you bump me? (Bear in mind that I do not enjoy being bumped.)

6. Bungee jumping or skydiving?

7. Tell me an interesting fact about beetles.

8. I’ve got a friend expecting a baby girl in July. Any name suggestions I can pass on?

9. Do you know anything Abel and Cole? Are they unethical?

10. Do you have a farm I can come and work on?

11. Some friends are getting married in a little while. What should I get them?

A bit of world-saving and a bit of award-receiving

My instructions for yesterday went as follows:

Install solar panels for your water heating
(Going Greener by Simon Gear)

Say it with pixels – save a tree and send an electronic greeting instead.
(The Difference A Day Makes by Karen M. Jones)

The first one, unfortunately, wasn’t the best option for me. I had some rubbish news about a friend and felt rubbish so needed things I could do from the sofa, drinking a cup of tea. So, my version of installing a solar panel was getting in touch with a green energy supplier, called Good Energy, and enquiring about switching my gas and electricity to them. All their energy is local and renewable eg wave and wind power. I did the initial stages of giving them my details so that’s in motion at least.

The second challenge was easier as it is a good friend’s birthday today so I sent him a silly e-card of three pigs singing happy birthday, instead of buying an actual card. Done!

And now onto an award, presented to me by the wonderful JumeiraJames who, coincidentially, lives in an area of Dubai that I lived in when I was a baby.
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The rules for this one are as follows:

1. Display the award logo on your blog.
2. Link back to the person who nominated you.
3. State 7 things about yourself.
4. Nominate 15 bloggers for this award and link to them.
5. Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements.

Ok, here’s my seven things…

1. When I was younger, my favourite chocolate bar was Yorkie. Then they brought out that advert saying ‘Not For Girls’ so I stopped buying them. That showed them.

2. I don’t definitely know the difference between bio and non-bio washing powder.

3. I love wildebeest. I just think they’re quite majestic and beautiful.

4. Last night I stayed up quite late doing a jigsaw puzzle.

5. At age 27, I still sometimes put my shoes on the wrong feet. I did it yesterday actually.

6. Today I have a day off. I have been waking up quite early every morning for a little while. To celebrate not having to wake up early, I slept in til 10.20am and am seriously considering eating strawberry cheesecake for breakfast.

7. I don’t drink alcohol. Not to make a statement about anything. I just don’t. Herbal tea is my preferred drink of choice.

Now for my fifteen nominations. Here goes …

1. Lovefoodlovefashion – new on the blogging scene but fabulous. I can’t understand what took her so long to start!

2. The Waiting – following the adventures and photoshoots of the little one is the backdrop to my days.

3. A Londoner in Dorset – once an adventurer in far off lands, she is now exploring parts of England in her new home. Always something lovely to read here.

4. Fiammisday – beautiful clothes, beautiful shoes. Despite being childless by choice, I sometimes wish I had someone small to dress in these outfits!

5. Bagni di Lucca and Beyond – the first place I look when planning a trip to Italy (Naples in April).

6. Someone Fat Happened – what’s not to love about a farting dog accompanying your yoga session or childhood pictures which prompt laughter? All of life is here. Wedding jitters, work frustration, family life.

7. Jump For Joy Project – the perfect pick me up if feeling rubbish or wondering what to do with your life.

8. Campari and Sofa – there is tons to love in this blog (a mutual appreciation of the Tube being one of them) but I think the recent post about the treatment of women is one everyone should read.

9. Blogging For A Good Book – you can never have too many good book recommendations!

10. Our Adventures In Croatia – reading this blog gives me adventure-envy. Lots of beautiful pictures. I must travel more! The recent post on Venice bridges got me planning my next-next trip to Italy (the next one is already planned and waiting to come to fruition!).

11. Ordinary Lisa – just lovely honest writing. If ever there was a blog that encouraged me to notice and appreciate the things and people around me, this would be it.

12. British Museum Blog – loads of great stuff here. They are doing a small series of posts called London in 20 objects which is fascinating. Have a look!

13. Le Zoe Musings – now it might just be the Instagram effect but this woman’s life appears to be lived in varying shades of beautiful.

14. Live To Write – Write To Live – if I can’t think what to write about or just need some inspiration or writing advice, I don’t need to look any further than this blog.

15. Belle Grove Plantation Bed and Breakfast – I have been following this blog almost since I started blogging. The stories this plantation has to tell from the past and the present are amazing. I can’t wait to visit, which I will do one day!

Again? O, ok, let’s do it. Another award….

I had a plan for today’s blog. A plan which promised greatness and fabulousness and all the things you all love best about my blog…. I was going to get a copy of Chat and do a write up for you. But something insane happened. I couldn’t find one anywhere! So I’ll have to go to some different shops tomorrow. Sorry to disappoint you all.

In the meantime, I was nominated for an award so I’ll get on with that.
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The rules:
-State 10 random facts about yourself.
-Answer the questions given to you by the blogger who has tagged you for the award.
-Tag more people.
-Give them 11 questions to answer.

Ok, 10 random facts, here goes…
1. I once had an odd fixation on blueberry flavour Nutri Grain bars
2. I love cereal/fruity/nutty bars. Love them.
3. I was so totally in love with Jesse from the film Free Willy when I was younger.
4. I once asked for a monkey for my birthday and was super annoyed when I was told no.
5. I have read everything Enid Blyton has ever written.
6. I did my undergraduate degree at the university where Enid Blyton studied.
7. I’ve never seen the film, Fame.
8. I don’t really like the film Bugsy Malone. I’m sorry.
9. I have degraded myself by starting to drink decaf coffee, after spending so long attempting to develop a proper coffee habit. I’m ashamed and sorry.
10. If you spell my surname backwards, it says Yes I Am…. Maisey…. Yes I Am…. Maisey…. See?

Here are the questions asked me by Momina, the fabulous blogger who nominated me (thanks loads, by the way).

1- Who is the last person you usually think about before going to sleep?
Danda

2- Something you do alone, but wouldn’t do in front of others.
Throw my head around a bit dramatically when playing piano.

3- Do you have any strange phobias?
I’m not keen on tin foil. I used to get terribly embarrassed if I opened my lunchbox at school and my sandwiches were wrapped in tin foil.

4- One Favorite Novel that you’d like to recommend people to read and why.
Definitely F. Scott Fitzgerald. But which one? Tender Is The Night. Or The Beautiful And Damned. Actually let’s go with Tender Is The Night. Fitzgerald’s ability to write characters is amazing. The minute details of how relationships work, how interactions and people become complicated and intertwined. Everything about life gains a beautifully tragic edge when I am reading Fitzgerald. Reading him makes me want to write, makes me want to be grand, makes me want to have fantastic unachievable dreams.

5- Do you take the shampoo and conditioner bottles from hotels? 😛
Yup. Still got everything from the room in the Savoy. The headed paper. The sugar packs. The soap. The shower cap. Everything.

6- Do you use Post-Its?
No.

7-If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?
Right here in my house. On my road. On this lovely hill near my favourite park. With my lovely friends and neighbours. 

8-What inspires you?
Life. Nature. Richmond Park. People. Silly things we do and say.

9- Would you go bungee jumping or sky diving?
Done both. Bungee jumping more scary.

10- Do you ever count your steps when you walk?
When I was trekking the Great Wall in China and I was trying to learn some Mandarin, I counted my steps aloud from one to ten over and over to learn. That was eight years ago and I still can count to ten in Mandarin now!

11- Have you ever danced without music?
All the time. Honestly. All. The. Time.

Ok, now to tag some more people. As opposed to tagging them actually, I’m just going to highlight some new bloggers on the scene that I’d like some attention to go to because they are fab.

Lovefoodlovefashion
Marktedlord
Eatmovelove

It’s up to you guys if you want to answer the questions or not. No pressure.

1. Why do you blog?
2. How do you feel about chilli chocolate?
3. Tea or coffee?
4. Next holiday destination….?
5. Am I invited?
6. Delia Smith or Nigella Lawson?
7. Do you mind that Nigella Lawson is essentially soft porn?
8. What are you getting me for my birthday?
9. My computer has stopped letting me print things. Why is this?
10. How do you feel about Starbucks?
11. I don’t really like orange juice. Do you think this could create a problem for our friendship?

Another exciting award!

Last week, a fabulous blogger Kindredspirit23, included me in his list of nominees for the Blogger of the Year award! Scott writes a brilliant blog, with fantastic perspectives on life, given his recent serious health issues. There is always something lovely to read there.

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This one is especially fabulous because there are no guidelines on having to give it to a certain number of people. You just give to the people you feel deserve it, which I like. The rules are as follows:

 

1 Select the blog(s) you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award
2 Write a blog post and tell us about the blog(s) you have chosen – there’s no minimum or maximum number of blogs required – and ‘present’ them with their award.
3 Please include a link back to this page ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award – and include these ‘rules’ in your post (please don’t alter the rules or the badges!)
4 Let the blog(s) you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the ‘rules’ with them
5 You can now also join our Facebook page – click the link here ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award Award and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience
6 As a winner of the award – please add a link back to the blog that presented you with the award – and then proudly display the award on your blog and sidebar … and start collecting stars…

 

Now for my post about why I have nominated the people I have. It’s mainly because they are some of my favourite blogging friends and I’d love to circumvent the ocean that divides us and have a cup of tea together. These nominations are like a virtual cup of tea, if you use your imagination….

 

Fitness and Frozen Grapes – The healthiest plates of food I have ever seen, for starters. And because reading about all that running and swimming and cycling kind of makes me feel fit by association.

 

Someone Fat Happened – Because there is nothing that I don’t like on this blog. Plus, I’m trying to get her to say she’ll wear my big ugly purple crocs at her wedding and I figure this nomination might persuade her it’s a good idea.

 

The Waiting – Because the insights of a new mother can be very amusing. As can pictures of babies in funny costumes. And posts called ‘Gingivitis Friday’ – what’s not to love?

 

Eat, Move, Love – A great new blog on the fitness scene. After reading it, I decided to try the yoga class which prompted this post.

The Good Greatsby – There is always space for a nomination for this blog. I often check it for advice before making big important life decisions.

Enjoy your weekend, everyone!