Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Versatile Blogger Award ... and Some Cool Birds

I thought I'd share a favorite photograph of an anhinga (or two).

Beth from Plant Postings surprised me with the Versatile Blogger award. I had seen other bloggers write about receiving the award, and it made my day to get one myself! (I will confess I had some brief misgivings that it was a type of chain letter, but I decided to get over my skepticism. Life is too short to be cynical.) The whole point of blogging to me is to interact with others, and it's wonderful to hear that people find my blog worth visiting. It's also enjoyable to recognize others. 

(Insert another random photo from the Florida vacation that I promised to blog about long ago. Actually, I see red-shouldered hawks all the time in my backyard, but not when I'm wandering about with a tripod.)

The rules of the competition are: 

1. Post the Versatile Blogger button. 
2. Thank the blogger who nominated you. Thanks again, Beth!
3. Include 7 random facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 15 other bloggers. 

7 random facts about me:

  • I am 5’ 7” tall. My husband thinks I’m 5’ 6.” Perhaps this is because he’s 5’ 5.”
  • I like to walk in the woods. I sometimes hug trees when no one’s looking.
  • I wish I could swim in the ocean more often.
  • I met my husband riding bicycles while training for the AIDS Ride.
  • I like cookies.
  • I once drove an M1A1 tank. 
  • I believe in God. I feel God's presence in nature.  

(Have you ever seen a Great White Pelican? They are 5 feet from tip to tip.) 

Time to announce my awards to 15 wonderful bloggers. I couldn't include everyone whose blog I enjoy, and I deliberately did not include some bloggers who had already been nominated multiple times. 

Stacy at Microcosm. Stacy has a lyrical writing style and lovely photographs. She blogs about the small things in her garden and has a gift for finding depth and beauty in them, while making larger connections to life.

Linnie at Women Who Run With Delphiniums. Linnie makes me laugh. Every time. She's original and irreverent - I think she knows a lot more about what she's doing in the garden than she lets on. Great photos, too.

Linnie and Kininvie at Uncanny Death. Who can resist an intercontinental murder mystery involving gardening being written by two authors on Twitter?

Karen at Southern Meadows. I love Karen's blog. She photographs and writes mainly about native plants and the creatures she finds in her backyard. Her photographs are stunning and she often writes informative profiles of a particular plant or animal.

Donna at Gardens Eye View. Donna writes about her life and garden in a personal style that is easy to connect with. Like most of the bloggers I follow, she is interested in organic gardening, native plants and wildlife.

Donna at Garden Walk Garden Talk. Donna's photos are truly inspiring - and not just because she lives near Niagara Falls.

Carolyn at Carolyn's Shade Gardens. I wish I lived near Carolyn's Pennsylvania nursery of mainly native shade plants! Since I don't, I have to settle for frequently reading her blog. She offers excellent information about plants, often grouped by category, and also blogs about inspiring gardens she's visited.

Chris at New Hampshire Garden Notes. Chris has a very attractive and enjoyable blog. I particularly enjoy her collages of plants.

Carolyn at This Grandmother's Garden. I always feel good when I visit Carolyn's blog. Her photographs of her garden are lovely. I am jealous of her view of the mountains. I appreciate her openness about her faith.

Heather at Restoring the Landscape. Heather writes very informative posts about native plants and insects in Central Minnesota. Unfortunately for me, many of the plants that are native in her area are not native to central North Carolina, but they're still interesting to learn about. Her blog also offers tips on how to restore your garden by planting natives.

Meredith at Great Stems. Meredith has amazing nature photos, especially of birds. She gardens in Texas.

Hanni at Sweet Bean Gardening. Hanni is a relatively new gardener who writes about her vegetable garden in Indiana. I like her honesty about gardening successes and failures and her enthusiasm.

Aimee at Red Garden Clogs. Aimee is also a new gardener with a small plot in urban New York. She's a fun writer to read, and as a former city resident, I like hearing about her efforts to grow plants in an urban environment.

One at Onenezz. One has fun photo-captioning contests. Plus, as One lives in Malaysia, I enjoy the exotic photographs.

Nell Jean at Secrets of a Seed Scatterer is a prolific blogger from the South. She writes about what's happening in her garden in a down-to-earth style.


Donna said...

Thank you so much Sheila for nominating GWGT. Congrats on your nomination too. Your bird images today are so good, and I never saw any of these birds before. It is wonderful to see birds from around the country and the world. Thanks again, and this is the first time I have know all the nominees.

PlantPostings said...

Ah, hugging trees--I need to do that more often (when no one's looking, of course). Great photos of all the birds, Sheila! And it will be fun to check out the bloggers on your list whom I haven't visited yet. Cheers!

Donna@Gardens Eye View said...

Sheila I am so honored that you nominated me...you and your blog are so special and I feel such a connection to both of you...

Carolyn @ Carolyn's Shade Gardens said...

Thanks so much for the award. I am glad we share a love of native plants and of course Maine. I swim in the ocean every day there.

The Sage Butterfly said...

Congratulations on your honor! I, too, felt humbled and grateful. Life is about gratitude, and I am always grateful to be appreciated. I really enjoyed your bird photos especially the one with the wings extended...lovely.

linniew said...

Thank you Sheila, for both awards-- Very kind of you and much appreciated! I always enjoy your blog and the amazing photos, and also your comments when you come to visit. Nice to know you!

HolleyGarden said...

Once drove a M1A1 tank? I think there's a longer story in that! Great photos. Congratulations on the award. I, too, think it best to look at the positive side of things. That helps in all areas of life!

Aimee@RedGardenClogs said...

Aw, shucks! Thanks for including me, Sheila! It's an honor!

I love that you and your husband met cycling for the AIDS ride - we have a friend who rides from San Francisco to LA ever year for AIDS ride and we support him as much as we can.

I'm with you on walking in the woods - AND hugging trees. :)

Love your gorgeous photos and looking forward to keeping up with you through this busy and exciting time (house on the market? new job schedule?) Lots happening for you right now!

NHGarden said...

Sheila, Thanks for nominating New Hampshire Garden Notes! What a sweet surprise!

Carolyn ♥ said...

You are so sweet to think of me. Thank you so much!
I love my visits to your blog. I always feel such peace. here. And I love that pelican! They are a favorite of mine.

Karin / Southern Meadows said...

Thank you Sheila! So sweet of you! Your bird photos are excellent! I am with you on the hawks...see them frequently but not when I have my camera in hand.

Bridget said...

Well done on your award! It's always nice when people like what you're doing. A few new blogs to check up on for me.

Sheila Read said...

dThanks for all your comments. It is a pleasure to be honored and to honor!

Carolyn @ Carolyn's Shade Gardens said...

I am linking to you blog later today to thank you for the award.

Julia@PolkaDotGaloshes said...

Huge Congrats on the award! Well deserved for sure!! I love your blog list, you have listed some truly wonderful blogs there!! Your bird pics are lovely...cheers =)

Sheila said...

Carolyn, thanks for the shout out! And congrats to you for being featured on the BBC as a snowdrops fancier.

Julia, thanks! You have a wonderful blog, too. Reminds me that I am overdue in paying a visit ...

Stacy said...

Sheila, thank you so much for the award and for the lovely description of Microcosm! I hope to be "out and about" exploring blogs again soon so that I can discover some of the others you mention. At this point I'm not sure how fully I'll be able to respond, but I do really appreciate being nominated. Like Holley, I feel there must be a story behind your ride in that tank...

I haven't seen anhingas in years--let alone one with such a photogenic reflection!

Roberta said...

The only blogger I know on the list is LinnieW and she is a jewel. Your blog isn't too shabby either! I love all of the bird photos. We have a surprising variety going through our backyard in the spring as well.

Sheila Read said...

Stacy (and Holley), M1A1 tanks rarely come to mind when gardening. Thank God! But in my 20s, before I began to grow into myself, I was a military reporter. Still hard for me to understand how a peacenik ends up writing about defense. Probably something to do with ambition and desperation for a job... What a relief as I get older to be willing to take greater risks and make life choices more consonant with my values...

Roberta, thank you for the visit and your kind comments.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the honor Sheila! Very kind of you. :)