Paying it forward

First off, Merry (belated) Christmas! Better late than never, right?! The late wishes are only appropriate as I received a very nice late Christmas gift I was humbled to receive from fellow blogger She included me in her list of nominees for The Versatile Blogger Award, which is basically a way for bloggers to recognize other bloggers they enjoy. The really fun thing about the VB awards is you get to pay it forward. Thanks for the nomination, Beautiful Wife! I appreciate you reading my ramblings and for your regular comments, which always make my day.

Now…onto the rules!

The rules for the Versatile Blogger Award are :
1. Nominate 15 fellow bloggers.
2. Inform the bloggers of their nomination.
3. Share 7 random things about yourself.
4. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
5. Add the Versatile Blogger Award pic on your blog post.

My 7 Random Things:

1.  I have had the same best friend my whole life. We met when were babies (our families go way back) and have remained close ever since. (love you, Red!)
2. I met my husband at the bar I used to bartend at when I was between full-time journalism jobs. Before we knew eachother’s real names I was “the bartender who breaks all the glasses” and he was the “dude who drinks Sierra Nevada.”
3. I’m still clumsy. He has since switched to Budweiser.
4. I love to laugh but it often gets me into trouble when I can’t stop. I was voted Most Likely to Burst out Laughing at her Own Wedding, but I proved them all wrong!
5. Nothing is funnier than people tripping or falling. And, no, I don’t feel guilty saying that since I do my own share of tripping and falling and can also laugh at myself.
6. I sustained so many fall injuries in high school, my parents bought me a pair of crutches.
7. Fabio, of “I Can’t Believe it’s Not Butter” fame, once spilled beer on me at a party and didn’t even stop to apologize. The party happened to be now-convicted criminal Rod Blagojevich’s first gubernatorial election night party which I was covering as a political reporter.

Now, onto my nominees. Many on my list are well-established bloggers who don’t need attention or accolades from little ol’ me. But, if nothing else, it gives my readers a chance to see who I read, and me a chance to say, “Hey, you. I like your blog,” especially since I tend to be more of a silent lurker than commenter.

Organized by category, but not importance:

RV/Traveling blogs I discovered Dear Missmermaid’s blog shortly after we ordered our RV and I was lurking around on various RV forums. Since moving back to the states about two years ago from the British Virgin Islands, she has lived full-time in her RV with her little dog. Once I discovered her bog and story, I was intrigued and had to go back to the beginning and read it from the start to present day. She’s kept me inspired ever since by her humor and her ability to laugh and stay positive despite challenges that would send most of us locked in a room crying for days. This is the adventures of a guy who, after a series of unfortunate incidents including losing his home to a fire, decided to hit the road in his VW Westphalia. I’m waiting for a beer-lovers tour of America guidebook when he’s done since he seems to find the local brew of ever region he visits. Yeah, I’d buy that This is another blog I found early on in my RV-information-seeking quest. Nick Russell, author of the blog, and his wife have been living full-time in an RV for well over a decade. They publish a newspaper from the road, which I think is pretty cool, given my own newspaper background. He also updates daily, NEVER missing a day, which I think is astounding and impressive especially considering he writes at least two other blogs. Another person who gave up the sticks and bricks home for life in a van. This one is written from a woman’s perspective. I’m always awed and inspired by people who give up most all their material possessions for a simplistic life.

Mommy/career women bloggers I started reading Lagliv’s blog a few years ago when she was going through one of the worst possible nightmares a new mom and wife could imagine. The nightmare came to a good conclusion, but I’ve continued to follow because the writing is good. She also reminds me with most every post that I just don’t have the discipline or dedication needed to be an attorney, a career I thought I wanted to pursue many years ago. She takes the balancing of work and life to unimaginable levels. If nothing else, you should check out her blog to see pictures of her kids — cute overload. As bad as LagLiv’s nightmare was, it pales in comprison to the nightmare Katie Granju experienced when she lost her oldest son to drug addiction. As a former newspaper reporter, I dealt with a few stories similar to Katie’s, but each time, the families chose to grieve in isolation. As a reporter, this was frustrating as I knew their stories could serve as warnings to others and as motivation for law enforcement to do something other than right these deaths off as “just another dead junkie.” I’ve never met her, but Katie’s courage to go public with the circumstances of her child’s death is absolutely awe-inspiring. She has led a successful fight against local law enforcement officials who would prefer to ignore the existence of a dangerous epidemic in their community than go after the dealers who are, literally, killing people. (those responsible for her own child’s death were finally indicted a few months ago). If that weren’t enough, she founded a non-profit organization aimed at helping young addicts get the treatment they need, which leads me to my next nomination: Katie and her family launched this blog to help tell the story of what happened to her son and shed light on the ridiculousness that was going on with local law enforcement officials. The blog also includes updates on Henry’s Fund, the non-profit launched by Katie and her family to help young addicts. Since its launch, the site (and the Henry’s Fund Facebook page) has become a useful resource for news on prescription drug abuse and what is being done to combat it across the country.

Cooking/baking Even if you are not a baker, you would feel inspired by looking at this blog. She makes the most delicious looking treats easy to make, and fun to look at with her beautiful pictures. It’s no wonder the blog was turned into a book! What can I say about Pioneer Woman that you don’t already know? If you haven’t heard of this blogging superstar, drag thyself out from under that rock you’ve been sleeping under and get yourself to a computer. The thing I cannot decide is what I like most – her writing, her photography, or her recipes!

Running/Hiking When I first found this blog, I seriously thought someone was blogging under my identity. This blogger and I share the same name, both first AND last; we are both married to Brian; both are journalists; and both are runners; and both enjoy other outdoor activities such as hiking and camping. The main distinction between us is that she could, literally, run circles around me … very, very large circles! She’s an ultra marathoner whose distances put my paltry 26.2-mile marathon distance to shame. She would run 26.2 miles because it was a Tuesday. Her awesomeness inspires me and gives me the ultra itch. She hasn’t updated the blog in a while and her last post mentioned a positive Lyme disease test, so I hope all is well with her. I found this blog while doing research on hiking the Appalachia Trail after watching a documentary on it. At the time, Buck was hiking the Pacific Crest. Completing a trip/hike like that is a crazy dream I have. It’s fun to live vicariously through other people. I found this blog while researching shoes for my first trail run. There’s so much information on this site, it may not even be considered a blog but … Whatever. I admit, I am not a regular follower of The Penguin but I can’t count how many times I have referred newbie runners to his site. I had the pleasure of meeting him a few years ago at the PF Chang’s Rock N’ Roll Marathon in Phoenix where I heard him speak at a post-race event. His story is inspiring and proof any couch potato can become a marathoner. And he remonds people that you don’t have to be in the front of the pack to be considered a true athlete.

Miscellaneous After he resigned from his long time gig as a blogger for the Poynter Institute in November, Jim Romenesko moved his writings to his own personal site. He’s a must-read for anyone who is a member of, or interested in, the media. Some posts make you cry, some make you laugh out loud, some make you do both. This unique form of story telling which uses more cartoon drawings than words, is one of the most unique things you’ll find in the blogosphere.

How’s THAT for being versatile!! Again, I know few if any of these bloggers know who I am, nor do they likely care. But I appreciate their writing and maybe you will, too.


About travelerontherun

I am a chronic adventurer who loves to see and experience new places. What I really love most is experiencing those places after parking my RV and lacing up my running shoes.
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2 Responses to Paying it forward

  1. Hahaha! I also think that people falling is HALARIOUS. Hope you had a great Christmas 🙂

  2. Lol.. Good to know I am not alone in my twisted sense of humor! But as much as I trip and fall myself, I provide entertainment to other twisted folks like us. I’m a giver that way 🙂
    Christmas was great! Maybe I’ll get around to doing a recap. Hope you enjoyed your time with family!

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