Where You At?

Well now.  I’m not quite sure how to broach this delicately, or if it’s even proper to mention such things aloud.  But in the habit of being born without filter and an unwavering need to always solve the issue(s) at hand… I’ll confess:

Readership is down, yo.  Way down.

i’m one sad buggie =(

In fact, I’m seeing about 10% the average of readers I used to see.  So, what gives?  Am I boring these days?  Am I writing about things that no one cares about?  Is Western New York so boring and Hawaii was so awesome?  I’m trying to gauge the correlation between the periods of heavy readership and the topics that I discussed and posted on vs. these times of slimmer pickins.

Other blog friends have encouraged me, explaining that views-by-the-number will wax and wane, that things will go up and down. That more importantly than the stats page of my Dashboard is the community I have here.  This is a sentiment with which I heartily agree.  To my regular readers, the ones who comment and whose blogs I follow – whose lives I share: I LOVE YOU AND I THANK YOU!  I feel like I have the best readers ever, and through this silly little blog of mine, I’ve made all kinds of friends and contacts I had never imagined.

But plaguing me still is that gnawing issue: to those who have chosen to overlook my trusty page, here: Did I do something wrong?

would you like more pooch pics?

I know that such feedback is uncomfy and awkward.  No one wants to be the friend of mine who comes along and says, “Hey Rose, you’ve lost your edge!”  I get that.  No one wants to be hurtful.  Well, if you’re a troll than you do.  But there’s a way to help me out and be constructive while trying to leave my pride intact.

I think I’m a good writer.  I fully acknowledge that my content has shifted some, and that I’m not writing as regularly as I once did… that perhaps the time constraints of my job and the move have over-shadowed my zest for blogging.  In simple words:  I’m probably not giving the effort here that I used to.  I admit that, and I sincerely apologize.  It’s not fair to have a blog and ask for readership and want to make friends if I’m not on my A-game.

But that said, I feel that since taking on a job in writing and social media – the caliber of my writing has vastly improved.  My craft is honed, my tools sharpened daily on the stones of the Internet as I analyze, report, and write, write, write.

So…

Help me out!

i bought a new blender, wanna read about smoothies and protein shakes? we can do that.

Do you crave different kinds of content?  Do you want more hippie stuffs, like crunchy money saving ways (a post I have in drafts right now).  Do you want to hear about eco-friendly habits that are easy to adopt?  Gardening?  Do you want more about Happy Hippie Rose at play… like hiking stuff?  Outings?  Running, nutrition, and/or training – fitness stuff?  Did you care about my health and now you’re bored when I don’t gore you with details of the doctor’s office?  Do you want more photos and crafts?  More recipes?

running and training stuff – boring or do you want more?

we can talk about music…

more book reviews perhaps? laters, baby!

Or just more… ME?  Am I not being honest and vulnerable enough?  Do you want to hear crazy stories and revelations from my personal life and psyche?  We aim to please, after all.  (Ha! See what I did there?  Maybe some more cleverly placed pop culture references would tickle your fancy).

Or do you crave controversy?  Want me to get political and preachy?  Shall I talk about faith more often?  Daily struggles?  Politics?

Do I end too many a sentence with a preposition?  Am I arrogant? Aloof? Not naked enough?  Too married?  Not discussing romance to your liking?  Do you need more pooch pics?

Whatever it is that you’ve originally come here for, and now you find a lack of, LET ME KNOW!  I can’t fix what I don’t know is broken.

If I’m boring as all get out, you can say so.  Honestly: I’ll probably be sad; but for the sake of self improvement and delivering a blog that I love and will be proud of… I’m willing to go through the potential pain of exposure to difficult truths.

Thus, I ask that you lay it on me.   Feedback, please.

gardening talk? or do you come here for my sexy good looks? two birds with one stone right here? (oy… i am joking-ish, you know).

for real though, we can talk all about gardening. and we should!

If you don’t want to comment on in here, safely email me from the privacy of your own email client!  Happyhippierose@gmail.com will get you right to my green little eyes, and I’ll try my best to respond in a timely manner.

That’s another thing you know, as a reader of many blogs – I have my own pet peeves, and I try to avoid those.  Ya know, I hate commenting on a blog and having the author NEVER reply to myself or any of the others who comment.  I do try to get back to everyone!

My suspicions are that it’s a combination of timing (it’s summer y’all), content, and irregularity of posting, with a sprinkling of commitment issues and lack of effort, creativity and revelation on my part.  All of which I vow to improve.    Not only do I want you to like me – because honestly, I do – but I want this blog to serve some purpose.  I want to inspire kindness, happiness, fun.  If I enlighten just ONE person to experience a lifestyle that’s more gentle on this planent or towards one another, well then I’m happy as a clam!  If the trials through which I’ve been fuel strength in just one reader, I’ll be pleased.   If by being myself, open and vulnerable, anyone out there can connect – this blog is worth it.  This isn’t Live Journal, I don’t need such a fancy record of my life just for myself – I want to serve a purpose.  So if I’m missing the mark,  I need to figure out why my shot is off and correct.  If we were at the range, I’d know that I’m anticipating the shot too much and wavering on the trigger.  But when it comes to this her blog o’ mine… I’m grasping at straws.

Do me a favor, and just hand them to me, will ya?

i can do arts and crafts! i can, i mean it!

gadgets. we can gadget gossip. whatever you like, just lay it on me!

Thanks – I mean it.  Thank you for reading and thank you for any insight you can offer.

 

MUCH LOVE, 

Happy Hippie Rose

PS. If you’re a loving unwavering reader and never sensed that I’ve effed up or slipped at all – then bless you!  Could you maybe tell me why you come back?  What it is you expect and enjoy over here in my small corner of the Interwebs.

 

And PPS – Please, I hope this doesn’t reek of desperation the way it likely does.  My intentions are altruistic as possible.  I just want to be good, damnit.  Really good.  And I know that comes from genuine work, trial and error… but I feel like this is part of getting me there too.  Okay, I’ve said enough.  I’m out.  *Braces for the worst*

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New York-ified

I think I’ve successfully New York-ified my blog.

The “about me” section is updated, and I’ve added some new pics to the header rotation, as well as to the sidebars (when you view from the home page; if you’re at the URL for a specific post, you won’t see the sidebar action).

I feel pretty good about things!  I’ll always reflect some Hawaii on my blog – how can I not? Hawaii is amazing.  But now my little corner of the Internet also represents the state and place we currently call home: Western New York!

Not sure if I’ll keep this “theme” forever, but I do still like it.  I’m all about keeping my blog nice and easy to read, clean and simple – all that.

So at least I’m up to date now – whew! At least one thing checked off my to-do list for today.

As always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

Keeping The Tag Moving!

My blogger pal Mike, over at Run Till you Drop recently “tagged” me in a sort of blogging game (kinda like blogging awards).   He tagged me and asked me a question that I’m to answer here on my blog.  (So I will totes do just that).

mike, a former footballer now trainer, blogs about fitness and all that healthy stuff (and marriage and his cute kids) over at ‘run till you drop’ – an awesome and fun blog!

And then, I’m to pass the tag along! I’ll link your blog in this post + ask you a question; you answer the question and then keep the tag moving!

I don’t think there’s a set number of how many tags to pass on.  But yesterday I made a little list of some people who I hope will participate and actually write back. If you’re tagged here – come on back to the comments section and link us to your reply (I can always edit the post to include you answer link right on in the post body itself; technology is so fancy).

Mike tagged me over here.He wrote:

Secondly, I think it would be rude not to bring ‘happyhippierose‘ to the party! Rose is such a sweet girl who has just moved away from very different weather to what ‘bearrunner‘ experiences. After reading her posts about life in Hawaii, I get very jealous from time to time, BUT sadly she has recently moved and I’d like to know a little more as I’ve not seen many blogs from her recently. So Rose, how did the move go and are you settled now? Also, as Rose likes her exercise too, I’d like to know what you’ve done recently to keep yourself in shape whilst moving from one home to another?

Hey Mike! Thanks for thinking of me and for the kind words.  Well, at the time you actually tagged me, I hadn’t mentioned much about the move – but now I think I’ve actually gone overkill and I’ve given the play-by-play all up on here.  I have stories, photos, posts and what not (just scroll through my May posts, they’re almost all about moving – so it seems – sorry y’all, it was pretty consuming). I don’t want to be too redundant and bore you to tears, so I’ll say this:

  • moving always sucks, it’s always a pain, it’s always stressful
  • that considered, this one went REALLY well
  • we turned part of it into a short road trip through NY state and that was wonderful, we met up with fam and friends we hadn’t seen in years!
  • we’re nicely settled in now, and so far just LOVING it here!!

My cousin Nick’s home is great, he’s been a generous and gracious host – doing more for us than any one cousin should do for another; he is wonderful and his hospitality right now is one of the biggest blessings on our lives.  So we’re living with him, probably will for a year or so.  We get along well, it’s been super fun so far, lots of joking around and good times.

my cousin nicky, he’s a great fella

Also, we arrived at a great time of year – we live in an amazing small town near Lake Erie with SO MUCH to do. Because of said lake, there’s all kinds of water stuff to do: boating, fishing, tubing, swimming, sun bathing, etc., so on.  New York state is gorgeous, has mountains, and in the warmer months there’s a festival or something every durn weekend.

having fun out on lake erie, memorial day

smooching my hubs, aww!

On my health during this move: I was bad Mike. Like downright evil – I hadn’t worked out in a good, long time.  The house mold in Hawaii had really taken hold of me before we left, and my last couple months there I was just soooo sick.  I didn’t do much of anything. It took moving and getting a few weeks out of the moldy house to actually realize how sick I’d become – slowly, during the move, I started feeling better, regaining energy, and it was just dawning on me how really ill I had become.  This move has been wonderful in that sense and to feel like myself again is such a treasure. So I’m easing back into a better, active, healthy lifestyle…

Since arriving here I’ve been running again!

me, out for a an evening jog with the pooches a couple nights ago

Stretching, yoga and some abs work too. Pretty fancy, huh?  I’m slowly trying to get back into it.  I think after being so ill and not doing much of anything, all the fuss and movement of actually leaving and traveling felt like a workout at first.  Now that we’re settled – it’s back to running, jogging, the kind of exercise I can do for free and in my house.  The best kind!

post workout: i’m slowly getting back into fightin’ shape

So, I think that should have MORE than answered your questions, right?  Thanks for thinking of me, Mike!  You rock! And to my readers who’ve never checked out Mike’s blog before: it’s an awesome resource for fitness info, workout ideas, training motivation and wonderful photos of England, his adorable family and the fun stuff they get into on the weekends.

Now: I’ll Keep The Tag Moving!!!

Oh I have so many friends with blogs and blogs I’m friends with… I feel like I coould be here all day.  So if you’re someone I love and I didn’t pick you, please don’t be cross with me.  These kinds of blogging games always come around and get passed about – so I’m sure there will be others down the road, and when that happens I’ll mix up the participants for sure.

In no particular order:

1. Cult Fit – tag, you’re it!  A real game of tag would totally count as random fitness, right? Cult Fit is a wacky, eccentric, brilliant blog written for the fitness-seeker with a speedy mind.  They crack me up and offer a good wake up call to get off my rear and go out and sweat, they also write daily workouts of the random fitness variety – fun stuff, motivation, love the humor and style.

“cult fit” – the header from their blog, i don’t think they post pics of themselves, and i wouldn’t even know how many photos to look for!

My question to Cult Fit: How many authors do y’all have?  It always feels like there’s a whole mess of you penning blogs and you’re always referring to Uncle so-and-so, and this guy and that gal… but really, how many different writers are there?

UPDATE: Cult Fit already passed the tag – check out their post right here. So rad!

2.  Sleep & Salami is a blog I got connected with during my feeble attempt at 30 Days of Blogging Honesty (which I hardly made it halfway through)… Sleep and Salami is a funny, happy blog that covers all kinds of topics and I’ve been a subscriber ever since the 30 Day event.

“sleep and salami” never posts pics of herself, but here’s the image on her gravatar

Question: I really loved your happy go lucky postings of “Merry May” – what a fun idea. I’m sorry you had a crummy April and you were in need of a pick me up – what have you found to be the best way to pull oneself out of a funk and into happiness?  Do you think your focus on gratitude has been a big help?  (I’m a huge advocate of focusing on gratitude for sure).  How are you feeling now, emotionally?  What’s in store for June?

3. Nourish. Nature. Love.  Carlita!  Heya Carly, how’s it going in Florida?  Carly is a personal friend of mine who writes an incredibly educational blog about lifestyle, fitness, nutrition and health – she posts juicing recipes, all kinds of recipe, workout stuff, yoga stuff, just all kinds of holistic lifestyle good choices stuff.

carly, from “nourish.nature.love.”

carly, gettin’ her workout on!

I would like to ask Carly: Are you so stoked about your new job teaching/training Kosama? What about Kosama excites you? What all will you be doing as part of this new job?  (Congrats btw, I’m super excited for you!)  And if you want to get into Jordan’s new job, can you touch on what you’ll be doing to stay busy over the next year (other than working your tail feather off??)

yogi extraordinaire.

4. I am Rose’s Keeper.  Are you EVER going to write your own blog again?  C’mon pleeeeeeeeeease.  (That’s my hubby’s blog, I want him to keep it up!)

oh duggs – so handsome in his new civilian look, the guy who blogs at “i am rose’s keeper” (and my hubby)

the pic duggs has of himself on his blog

5. Ear-Sword-Miracle.  Why are you so incredibly awesome?? Seriously Miles, you rock.  You’ve become such a “mentor” to me – and you always inspire me and offer so much support and love.  I think you and Sharon are so so rad!  So I know I’m supposed to ask you some kind of question that you’re actually able to blog about… so let’s see:  Can you tell me more about the roots of your faith?  I know an awful lot about how you view things now, but I’d love to know more about the journey that got you there.  And then – how did you and Sharon come to love tie dye so much?  The whole 70’s thing, or is it just because tie dye is so fun and happy and bright, just like y’all are?

miles, from “ear-sword-miracle,” the texan cowboy!

6.  Twirling Girl.  Oh Victoria, I love your blog!  I think your writing is beautiful and inspirational.  You’re really an excellent writer – is this blog your first foray into writing, or do you have some other experience that’s given you such a talented, solid voice and wonderful skill with words?

“twirling girl” pretty victoria

Where does your inspiration for your posts come from?  And how on earth do you find the time to do so much reading?? You’re really an impressive lady, and I just want you to know that I love your blog and find beauty in everything you post.

7.  Hiking in Paradise. Goodness you make me miss Hawaii!  SO MUCH!  I’m glad you’re trying to include more photos with your posts (I know at some point you mentioned getting a camera to bring on dives, and how it can be a bit clumsy to use – or at least it was at first, right?).  Your adventures are always exciting and the enthusiasm with which you’ve jumped into SCUBA makes me wish I’d given diving a chance.  Did you like that pun back there?  I have ear drama though, so actually I’d probably not do well with diving, I can never go too deep when I’m snorkeling or swimming.

“hiking in paradise” is lovely and happy =)

My question for you:  What’s your most favorite hike in Hawaii?  If you ever leave the island, what will you miss the most?  And what adventure have you been on that’s your proudest accomplishment – ya know, what dive or hike was the toughest and left you feeling so great about yourself for getting through it?

8. Through The Tunnel.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!  I saw on Fb it was your birthday, so I just had to give you a shout out.  Doing anything fun for your b-day?  For the average person, what’s the most important thing we should know about PPD and those going through it?  Like the top bit of advice you’d suggest for being supportive or the top bits of info to know for the sake of having awareness awareness, can you give us a surface level little bit, and “intro” to PPD if you will.

esther, lovely mama and encourager of many at “through the tunnel.”

PPD, btw, is Post-Partum Depression, and my pal Esther writes a lovely encouraging blog about PPD and getting through to the light at the end of the tunnel.  She’s a smart, sweet, and loving mama who helps reach out to many through her blog and social media.  Again, Happy Birthday!! Love to you, Corny Esther =)

(fun fact: Ear-Sword-Miracle is Through The Tunnel’s Dad, so cool!)

Alrighty – I think that’s plenty of folks for now – right?

Now y’all have to Keep The Tag Moving!  So, write and publish a post on your own blog, in which you answer the question I’ve asked you.  Then “tag” some other blogs by linking to them in that same post and ask a question or two of them, thus passing the tag on to them.  Cool? Cool!

Have fun!

And as always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

*pics stolen from other blogs and in one case, facebook, totally without permission because i’m totally rude like that.

Genius Nose-Picker Slings Links (I’ve Been Given The Kreativ Award)

I have been awarded a blog award: The Kreativ Award.  

Blog awards are fun!  It’s a way that bloggers recognize others and give credit to the pages and authors that they enjoy, like, appreciate, and so on.

Recently two of my most favourite British running bloggers (okay, maybe the only two British running bloggers that I happen to know and follow, hehe) – both were kind enough to present me with some “awards.”

YAY!

In this post I’ll feature how my pal Happy Runner gave me the Kreativ Award, and then tomorrow I’ll publish a separate one for Mike’s “Pass The Tag Along” Award that he bestowed upon me (so more on that tomorrow – and let me tell you, it’s a fun one.  Come back and read it tomorrow, will ya?).

The Kreativ Award

Check out my pal The Happy Runner over at “Inspiring and Healthy Running in London.”  In her post “Awards,” she donned the Kreativ Award upon me, the happy hippie!

Not only does she write a fun, witty, resourceful, and interesting blog about both running and travels (and the awesomeness of being genuinely happy) – she’s a fundraiser for Team In Training – the racing group that raises money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.  As a Lymphoma survivor (and former Team member), I so love love love and appreciate that.

i totally stole this pic from her post on the london bupa 10,000 (one of her recent races).

The Award Itself – As Taken From Her Post

The rules for the Kreativ Award are:

  • Write 7 things about yourself that no one knows.
  • Nominate 7 creative bloggers for this award.

So here we go…

Seven Things About Myself No One Knows:

(Now this is rather hard, I’m pretty much an open book.  I’m not so stealthy or secretive, but I’ll try to post seven things that I’ve hopefully never before disclosed on my blog – and therefore the happy hippie rose audience doesn’t yet know.)

1.  I pick my nose.

Yeah, I said it.  I’ve been diagnosed with the OCD – and while I refuse to acknowledge that diagnosis (even though two different docs and a handful of casual observers have flung it my way)… I have a hard time letting things be.  So if a boogie is tickling my nose, I can’t stand it.  I’ll pick it and then go wash my hands, or I’ll use a tissue. I mean, I’m not an animal.

busted! so gross, huh?

Likewise, it’s nearly impossible for me to ignore scabs, blemishes, and so on.  I pick.

That’s so foul isn’t it?  I’m gross. Oh, just leave me now.  I understand.

2.  I worry that I don’t do enough; I could do so much more.

This is in regards to everything: art, blogging, working, fitness, activism.  I try to do stuff – but I worry that I’m actually lazy or not pulling my weight.  I feel so aware of so many social issues – but what am I personally doing to fight injustice?  Enough? Hardly.  I feel like my time could be better spent.

On a run, I could go harder.  On my blog, I could post more often and with a higher quality of content.  I feel like there’s always more to be done – and there’s always more I could and should be doing.

I guess you could say – I fear inadequacy.

And oh please, do not barrage me with reassurances that I’m a great person and I do plenty – this isn’t an issue or dilemma that keeps me up at night, etc.  I’m just trying to think about things about myself that I don’t often disclose, and this is just one of them.  I know I’m good – but I feel like with a little more elbow grease, I could be great.

3.  I’m actually a good singer

At least, I truthfully believe this.  I just don’t think I’ve ever been “discovered” or heard in the right context.  Or maybe I need some training or something.

My whole life I’ve been told I’m essentially tone deaf (even though I’m so not – I have great aural pitch and I have a pretty good ear for music) and most significantly, that I’m a terrible singer.  I fear karaoke more than death; I know I’ll mortify myself because all I’ve ever been told is how dreadful  my singing voice is.

But in those alone moments: belting out a tune in the car, singing when no one is home and really going at it – really putting my lungs into it.  I think I’m good.  I think I can really sing, actually.  I have a powerful, hear-me-in-the-rafters kinda voice.  I should probably be a popstar.  I mean, I have the moves, too.

4. I’m perfectly at peace with my “conflicting” morals

To some, my morals, views, beliefs (whatever you wanna call them) may seem a bit hard to follow – perhaps a bit unorthodox or all over the place, even.  I won’t go into details or call myself out right here.  If you know me, or if you’ve read my blog long enough you’ve probably scratched your head a time or two when coming across something I believe in, or a notion I condone.

I am 100% at peace with it all though and I literally see no conflict in the beliefs I hold.  To me, my moral compass makes perfect sense and the beliefs I hold mesh.

5.  I way prefer TV shows to movies.

Something about the pacing of shorter episodes? I’m not sure.  I’d rather watch an entire season of a show in one sitting than one movie, and I blame it on my attention span.  Even though the former requires hours and hours of steady watching – I find the episode to episode sequence easier to handle than just. one. movie.

[this is hard, I feel like people know everything about me… I’m kinda scraping the bottom of the barrel here.  These are such lame revelations].

6. I’m a Genius

I usually don’t brag about such things, and normally I’d find this kind of self promotion to be super tacky.  But I’m running out of ideas here – I already tell too much about myself to have seven whole secrets!  (So much for being creative as this award suggests, huh?).

So I’ll be honest: I’m a genius.

me and ole albert here kinda have the same ‘do. image source from pc mag

Like, a legit Mensa-caliber, top 0.001th percentile I.Q., wicked smart genius.  I never disclose my actual IQ.  For a variety reasons – it’s weird, it’s actually really tacky, and despite having a big ole brain and a high number on that one test, I know plenty of folks much much smarter than me, people who work harder, so forth and so on.

Just because you have a super IQ doesn’t meant you’re qualified for anything necessarily.  It does mean that I did great in school, in the gifted classes (where I was mercilessly picked on by kids not in the gifted program for being a loser geek).   When I was younger I did carry some arrogance about my God-given smarts; I’ve long since learned humility (the hard, slow, painful way) and I try not to be cocky, judge others or be elitist in any way shape or form.  I try to see the good in everyone and I know that being academically smart is only one kind of intelligence and that there are gifts galore that people possess and it really does take all kinds to make the world go ’round.

It does mean that I put tons of pressure on myself for greatness though.  So we’ll see.  Hopefully I’ll do something world-changing and bring good and happiness to millions.  I so pray and wish I somehow am able to do just that.

7.  I consume more garbage than the city dump

Candy, pizza, ice pops, candy, soda, reality TV… I consume garbage at an alarming rate.  And sometimes I go through phases of wholesome dedication to a healthier lifestyle.  And then at other times I just binge, without guilt, and go nuts.

i’ve had a long long love affair with pop.sicle brand ice pops – but lately, i can’t get enough. it’s incredible how many a day i consume. it’s embarrassing, actually.

I know that this here is a lifestyle blog in which I try to encourage others to get into a healthy way of living and eat good, whole food.  And please, I wholeheartedly 100% support the real food movement.

I just still love my Cokes and candies and crap.

I always promise to cut down, and I know what’s best for me.  But I have this ratio of pleasure to productivity.  And while living a long, healthy life is of paramount importance to me – so is the sweet divine happiness that comes from consuming ice cream and soda.  So I try my best to balance, and often I end up on the losing sugar-laden end.

Whew.

That was painful, honestly.   Thinking of SEVEN whole things about myself was damn hard.  Try to go easy on me dear readers, will ya?!?!   Now.  Onto the fun part- THE LINKS!

Seven Creative Bloggers I’m Nominating: 

Picking just seven bloggers is tough.  This isn’t a reflection of picking my favorites and playing sides – so if you don’t see your name and link here, please don’t take it personally. I hate having to choose when it comes to stuff like this.

So, I’m actually going to try and name seven bloggers I’m not sure I’ve ever linked to before in an attempt to get some new shout outs going on.   I also tried to mix it up and not just stick with one genre.  So hopefully out of these seven, you’ll have found a new blog or two to follow!

And remember, tomorrow is another award post in which I’ll be “tagging” more blogs for you to go and check out too.  Lots of love being slung around these parts =)

Go check out these blogs, and enjoy!

1.  Going Dutch and Loving It! 

A Filipina, moved to Holland – married and with a young daughter, who loves to cook, sightsee, take photos and travel throughout Europe.  Her blog is a mixture of food, family, travelogue and just awesomeness.  Go check her out for her beautiful recipes and then stay to browse the gorgeous photos.

gorgeous family, living in a gorgeous place

Oh, and you just may pick up some wonderful tidbits on Dutch philosophy about life and happiness.

2. West End Singleton

It may surprise Aurathena to see I’ve named her here – we don’t always see eye to eye.  But I do read her blog regularly, and I’ve come to respect her, learn from her, and find humanity and love in her posts; which I think is important to do when you don’t always mesh 100% with someone – in fact, I think it’s more important in those circumstances at some times (world peace, y’all!).

(Aurathena is a pseudonym, and she doesn’t post any pics of herself – hence none here)

Aurathena is single, Christian, newly graduated from University and figuring out life.  She’s our neighbor to the north (Canadian) and she blogs from the heart – about her personal life, struggles, achievements and writings.

3.  ooamerica

This is incredible.  It’s a couple guys, in a crazy cross-country road trip, taking photos and video everywhere they go, accumulating stories, and just documenting what the good ole US of A is like right now.  It’s wacky, it’s fun, it’s awesome.

the original road trip – they’re on a different route now, hitting more/different states

The point of the blog is to track their progress and they’re creating a documentary about America and the point of view they’ve been able to glean while whirling around the states, couch surfing and sleeping in “the mosquito” (their car).  They just went through Florida, and I loved reading their take on THE wackiest state in the union.

Their photos, the video, the whole project is truly awesome and creative!  Seriously, go browse the photo albums – it’s amazing work, y’all.  LOVE.

4. The Wiener Takes It All

Meet Mort, an adorable and lovable wiener dog (a Dachshund). Mortimer’s Mom – Emily – is a funny, awesome, adorable blogger who writes about her life with Mort, the crazy antics he gets into, travels she and her husband take around Europe, and she posts the sweetest, most aww-inducing photos of dear sweet Mort and other readers’ doggies too.

oh mort, you’re too cute!

Emily makes me laugh on the regular and it’s all the feel-good happy fun times you need for a digital pick-me-up as often as you need one.

5. My Body The City: The Secret Life of A Call Girl 

Stella Marr is incredible.  The text of her blog may not always be safe reading for work, but it’s significant, important, and something that everyone should read.  Human trafficking is real, it is now, it happening all around the world.  Countless people are forced into sex work, coerced with violence, kidnapped and put into slavery, destitue from drug addiction or poverty and then unable to escape.

a hero of mine

The issue is NOT going away.  We aren’t doing enough to help.

Read Stella’s words.  It will hurt.  It will tear at your heart and soul to do so… but we, as a society and as kind, good people cannot pretend it doesn’t go on any longer.  Or that the girls in it are all there because they want to be.  Very few of them are, in fact.

Stella is an excellent writer – having finished her degree after escaping the ten years she was bound as a call girl in New York City.  She tells her story, she networks with other survivors, and she teaches us what we need to know to better fight this on-going atrocity.

6.   The Artful Desperado 

What’s more creative than art?  Gabriel posts interviews, features, and articles about art and artists.  Sometimes he even spoils us and features his own work (which is good, and he should do so more often – hint, hint).

gabriel

Want to learn about new artists?  Want to discover beautiful works and be inspired?  Follow The Artful Desperado and you will not be disappointed.

7.  Tamara Out Loud

Last, but most certainly not least – is Tamara.  If you want a blog about family, faith, Jesus, writing, life, and how to be an awesome person, go read Tamara’s blog.  She’s amazing.  I don’t know how she does it all and does it while being so cool.  She’s one of those people who can do a million things at once, fabulously, and make it look effortless.

tamara, pretty lady

But we know it’s not effortless.  She’s a hard worker.  She writes about that too – she’s been working really hard to get a book published, one that is amazing and will change lives.  In her own words (on this page about the book) she says, “The book of essays will explore ways in which women are caused to disbelieve their own worth and offer affirmation of their true, God-made worth.”

How awesome is that?

Tamara, you rock.  You inspire me, I look up to you and I wish I commented more frequently than I do because the community on your page is awesome as well.

*All photos were stolen from the respective blogs (without permission – rebel, rebel).

So there you have it!

I’ve been deemed creative – which as a sorta-wannabe-artist and an actual writer – is a lovely compliment indeed.  Thank you Happy Runner, I’m much appreciative.  And to all who read my humble blog here – THANK YOU SO MUCH!

I hope you enjoyed learning some super weird things about me and I really really hope you’ve clicked on over to check out seven awesome new blogs.  Report back to me about what you’ve found, what you like and so forth and so on.

Back tomorrow with more links and more revealing stories about the one and only, happy hippie rose.

As ALWAYS, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

PS – just in case you needed some more of my moves:

30 Days of Blogging Honesty – Day 12

Day 12 — My favorite song to dance and sing to when no one is looking…

“Dancing With Myself” – Billy Idol

Oh man!  I used to get ready for school/work almost everyday by busting a move to “Dancing With Myself!”  I love that jam.  One infamous morning in college, my music was up so loud and I was soooo in the solo dancing zone, I didn’t even hear it when my friends knocked and then opened my door!  There I was, half dressed, brushing my teeth, just dancing my little heart out.

It was one of those stories I never lived down.  Totally hilarious!

I love to dance pretty often, though.  If Lady Gaga or Brit Brit comes on, I’m up and dancing, for sure.  It’s just too much fun.

The moves inside me are just screaming to be let free:

happy hippie dancing to lady gaga’s “the queen”

As always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

I’m participating in a fun blogging event.  Tom Baker and Cherlyn Cochrane created the “30 Days of Blogging Honesty” challenge – chock full of 30 writing prompts + one dare at the end!  To read all the rules and prompts, click this link.

Check out the other bloggers playing along:

Participants
Cherlyn Cochrane
Jenn MikoLJMelanieLast Civilized WomanPrincesa MusangPrimadonna Zel,CarolineKoiAurathenaTerriblethinkerSleep and SalamiMarliz3ePrysmatiqueDLonelyStarAnonymousBurnNicoleSylvia GarzaMariana,NenskeiMyNakedBokkieBluefiadiarriesVeehCirraBannatreasuresSajeevHappyhippieroseTheFerkelTom Baker*Sofia*Everything Love & Lust,*TemptingSweets99, Sites with an * contain NSFW material. If erotic or sexual material is offensive to you, please do not visit these three blogs.

30 Days of Blogging Honesty – Day 11

Day 11 — When I’ve had a really bad day the first thing (not person) I reach for is…

the couch. 

Howdy y’all, happy Saturday! I’m writing to you from sleepy eyes with tired hands.  This past week was another whirlwind doozy.  The move is getting closer and closer, and things have just been really hectic as our time in Hawaii is coming to an end, work is super busy, and yes – I’m still sick.  I’m on the mend though, and I’d rather be ill here and now than moving sick.

We have the comfiest soft couch; I just love our living room.  It’s such a soothing place to be, that’s for sure.

save some room for me, will ya?!?

I love to veg out when I’m stressed.

TV, snacks, comfy blankets, lots of pillows … and just zone out.  Having the pooch and Duggs with me is pretty great too.  Maybe if I can get a backrub or a foot massage out of it, that’s just incredible icing on the relaxation cake.

oh yeah, that's the good stuff right there

A good second place option is the bathtub.  I LOVE taking a nice, long, hot bath after a stressful day.  I love bringing a compy into the bathroom and watching streaming TV or movies, or listening to music or a podcast.

Yeah, I’m really good at just vegging out.  I love simple distraction to help my brain unwind.

Today was short and sweet, huh?!?

as always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

I’m participating in a fun blogging event.  Tom Baker and Cherlyn Cochrane created the “30 Days of Blogging Honesty” challenge – chock full of 30 writing prompts + one dare at the end!  To read all the rules and prompts, click this link.

Check out the other bloggers playing along:

Participants
Cherlyn Cochrane
Jenn MikoLJMelanieLast Civilized WomanPrincesa MusangPrimadonna Zel,CarolineKoiAurathenaTerriblethinkerSleep and SalamiMarliz3ePrysmatiqueDLonelyStarAnonymousBurnNicoleSylvia GarzaMariana,NenskeiMyNakedBokkieBluefiadiarriesVeehCirraBannatreasuresSajeevHappyhippieroseTheFerkelTom Baker*Sofia*Everything Love & Lust,*TemptingSweets99, Sites with an * contain NSFW material. If erotic or sexual material is offensive to you, please do not visit these three blogs.

30 Days Continues – Day 10: The Last Time I Snooped…

Day 10 — The last time I snooped into something I wasn’t supposed to (like a medicine cabinet in a friend’s bathroom), I found…

a whole lot of trouble for myself. 

Ehh.

Curiosity killed the cat.  If you go dig, you’ll get your hands dirty.

Snooping, huh?  I used to snoop.  I used to have a hard time trusting in serious relationships, and I used to be too curious for my own good.  When I put my mind to it, I can have this detective-like ability to sort through facts, find patterns, figure out out the order of events.  I like to try and predict what will happen next.

nothing gets by me! image from here.

It’s not that I have a good BS-detector, I have a great memory for conversations and details, and I also observe.  A lot.  I can notice when things don’t match up.  When someone changes a detail about a story, when an item is out of place, when something physically seems off.

I’m not so straightforward and cold though.  Not at all.  I actually have a weird mix of perception sensors.  In many many ways, I’m super gullible, naive – I trust too easily.  I like to think that I can read people and then based off the impression I get, I’ll either trust very easily or be looking for BS all the time.  It burns me.  Often!  I’ve been fooled by people in real life and online.  I dated a really serious pathological liar, I dated a really scary psycho guy too – because I was a poor judge of character.

I see the good in everyone, and that often blinds me from the bad. 

the glass is half-full, y'all! always. photo from here.

But, I do have good strong instincts, it’s just a matter of properly applying them.

So.  When was the last time I snooped?  Some people will read this and right away know what I’m talking about.  There was a member of an online community I’m part of who struck me as being “off.”  I noticed some stories didn’t line up, it seemed like the whole projection of this person didn’t really add up to something believable.

"my name is tiffany, i'm 22, blonde, and i love modeling... i just don't post pics because i'm shy." been there, done that! image from this page.

I was “close” with this person, too.  We talked on the phone, we texted.  I felt like we “knew” each other.  So taking a step back to see the reality was very, very hard for me.  Due to some serious commonalities, it was hard to take the wool off my eyes and really consider that maybe this person was lying.

So, I did a little snooping.  I’m not a hacker though, and I don’t live near this person (according to where this person claims to live).  Snooping was hard.  I tried my best.  I dug through some old posts and compared details.  I talked to others who knows this person and got their take on things.

To say it ended badly is a serious understatement.  It was terrible.

This character did not go down without a fight.  I lost other “friends” over it, and things haven’t been the same since.  It was really ugly and hurtful, and I still consider most of what went down to be unfair.

friends were lost, backs were turned. sad face. pic source.

I called a spade a spade, and some people just didn’t want to hear that.

Honestly, I feel like the others being duped weren’t offended at being played and instead many were miffed that I wanted to stir up the peace.  Others thought I was the one full of crap.  Accused of drama-seeking and manipulation, some angry parties, loyal to the other person totally flipped out on me.  I was called a bully (and anyone who knows me for real can tell you that these days, I’m about as far from a bully as people come).

It was tough.  Being called a liar and accused of being shady really got under my skin, I took the fallout really personally.  You see, I’m a super transparent person.  You can spend five seconds checking out my online life and get a pretty full picture of who I am.  I have multiple outlets that all match up – photos, writing style, my real life interactions with others, social media, even third party confirmation of who I am (like being published on various sites, appearances on the news and stuff like that) … just proof of who I am and what I do abounds.

i am whatever i say i am. what you see is what you get!

Not to mention, I’ve gone out and personally met so many members of this specific community – I felt so confused at being so misunderstood.  I thought after years of friendship and how clearly open/public I am about who I am, that people would see my POV much more readily than they did.

Because I’m so open, it’s harder for me to take people seriously who are super “private.”  I know that not everyone wants to spill their guts online… but some privacy is just too much, and it reeks of BS.

When no photo of you exists, and your phone breaks, when you’ve never met anyone else in real life, when you don’t go by your real name or provide any details that can help confirm a real life – it just seems fishy to me.

So anyways.  I snooped, I found what I consider to be evidence of fakery and lying… and it blew up on me.

rose duggan, interwebs detective. this is me looking serious at the compy.

and... kaboom. image from here.

Every time I’ve snooped in the past, it’s ended badly, honestly.

I’ve found stuff that I wish I could un-see.  I’ve discovered things that hurt my feelings.  When I think about people snooping around in my stuff and my life, I don’t really like the idea at all.  I put enough of myself out there, so what I keep private – I would really like to stay private.  I’ve had my identity stolen before, and my home broken into, my online email and social media hacked and used in an anti-Semitic hate crime (hateful photo captions and posts were published on my MySpace and my original Fb accounts, calling me “an ugly fat Jew” and so on) – and having MY STUFF snooped into really really hurt me.  Knowing that my closet and drawers had been rifled through, disturbed me.  Big time.

I found out an ex was online dating, because I snooped on his phone.  That hurt.  I found out about drug use by snooping through someone’s trash can and that was awful (disclaimer – I was coerced into that one, though.  I was a kid).

Bottom line? Snooping sucks.  

I’ve come a LONG WAY as far as self confidence and my own strength goes.  I no longer feel this need to look for for things.  Duggs and I have a really cool policy about email accounts and stuff like that – we’re anti-snooping.  We both have each other’s passwords for everything, but we only use them for legit purposes (like when he was deployed, I could check his email if need be, etc.).  But pleasure reading his inbox? Nope.  Not gonna happen!

For now, I’ll keep my detective skills to predicting the end of TV shows and books.

as always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

Wondering what this is Day 10 of – and where the idea to write about snooping came from in the first place?

It’s 30 Days of Blogging Honesty:

I’m participating in a fun blogging event.  Tom Baker and Cherlyn Cochrane created the “30 Days of Blogging Honesty” challenge – chock full of 30 writing prompts + one dare at the end!  To read all the rules and prompts, click this link.

Check out the other bloggers playing along:

Participants
Cherlyn Cochrane
Jenn MikoLJMelanieLast Civilized WomanPrincesa MusangPrimadonna Zel,CarolineKoiAurathenaTerriblethinkerSleep and SalamiMarliz3ePrysmatiqueDLonelyStarAnonymousBurnNicoleSylvia GarzaMariana,NenskeiMyNakedBokkieBluefiadiarriesVeehCirraBannatreasuresSajeevHappyhippieroseTheFerkelTom Baker*Sofia*Everything Love & Lust,*TemptingSweets99, Sites with an * contain NSFW material. If erotic or sexual material is offensive to you, please do not visit these three blogs.

30 Days of Blogging Honesty – Day Nine

It’s Day Nine of the 30 Days of Blogging Honesty

Well, it’s day nine for me here at happy hippie rose!  I kinda tend to work at my own pace, huh?  The 30 Days of Blogging Honesty is a writing event, created by Tom Baker and Cherlyn Cochrane; you can check out the rules and see all of the prompts right here.

Day 09 — When the cashier gives me this amount of money for change I know it’s too much money to dump in the charity bucket…

(stand by for a bunch of possible answers.  go figure!)

-Quarters. 

If there are a bunch of quarters in the change I’m handed, I like to keep those!  Actual quarters are so useful, and once you get ’em, you need to hold on the them.  They’re the only things parking meters take, for one example.

Idk, I just always consider quarters to be legit coinage, a piece that’s useful and worth lugging around and allowing to crazily jingle jangle away in the abyss of my purse.

-Or, anything more than a few bucks?

I mean, I’m not trying to throw $20 into a random charity jar.  Or am I?  These kinds of things are what I just go with the flow on.  If the mood strikes me, I’ll toss all my change in.  If I’m distracted, or in a rush… or just whatever, maybe I won’t?

My husband and I are not rich, far from it.  But we do make great efforts to give as much as we can, as often as we can.  I honestly think we’re pretty generous.  So if I happen to skip some charity jars here and there, I don’t feel so bad.  I know that we help out and do lots of good.

-Or, depends on what else I need cash for, how broke we are, for what charity the money in the jar is being collected.

Yeah, there are a lot of factors.  If I had a twenty and I’m about to make another stop for which I need that cash – then I hold on to it!

And, I’m picky about the charities I’ll donate too.  I can be really picky, sometimes.  I have certain things I look for in an org when I’m going to give them moolah.

There’s always a few things that go into making these kinds of choices.  Sometimes it’s willy-nilly, sometimes it a well thought out decision that I’m making.

At the holidays, of course, I like to sling money around more than usual.  We try to give as much as we can.  When we give away, it blesses us!  Giving is good and it’s fun, and it’s very important.  So I love to help whenever I can, and my hubs is the most generous dude I’ve ever met – he loves to as well.

But, we have our own limits, and we have to be careful not to literally go broke by giving away too much to others.

We’re big tippers.  We always make sure to give at least 20% when we eat out.  We tip food delivery folks, the baggers at the commy, the valet.  Everyone, we tip!  I’d say we’re probably stingier with the random charity jars than tipping  – just because if we’re going out or using a service that merits a tip, we make sure to tip.  We don’t always budget out a charity jar being by the register, and like I’ve already said – sometimes I’m picky about the specific charity.

-Or… we don’t have cash! So nothing. 

I’m a plastic gal.  I hardly ever have cash on me.  In the past when I’ve worked in restaurant and bar jobs, I’ve exclusively used cash.  But usually it’s the ole debit card that I have on hand.  So there isn’t even any change to consider.  Sorry ole charity jar!  That’s why using instant pay online is a great way to give to charity.  It’s deliberate, quick, I can look up the org before I push “send,” and I don’t have to have actual hard money on me.

As always, thanks for reading!  xoxo, hhr

Having fun reading these?

I’m loving the 30 Days of Blogging Honesty!  It’s been a hoot, that’s for sure.

Check out the other folks playing along: Cherlyn CochraneJenn MikoLJMelanieLast Civilized WomanPrincesa MusangPrimadonna ZelCarolineKoiAurathenaTerriblethinkerSleep and SalamiMarliz3ePrysmatiqueDLonelyStarAnonymousBurnNicoleSylvia GarzaMarianaNenskeiMyNakedBokkieBluefiadiarriesVeehCirra,BannatreasuresSajeevHappyhippieroseTheFerkelTom Baker*Sofia*Everything Love & Lust*TemptingSweets99, Sites with an * contain NSFW material. If erotic or sexual material is offensive to you, please do not visit these three blogs.

30 Days of Blogging Honesty – Day Eight

Now I’m catching up to speed, huh?  I’m finally about comfy with where I’m at.  And now I really mean it – I’ll slow down to just one a day, and I’ll try my very best to keep up with the one a day. 

I’m participating in 30 Days of Blogging Honesty, a blogging event created by Tom Baker and Cherlyn Cochrane; you can check out the rules and see all of the prompts right here.

Day 08 — If I could afford it, the piece of famous artwork you would find in my home is…

Perhaps one of these large George Korsmit pieces?

stole this pic from the artful desperado's blog.

another george korsmit, this one is from over here.

Check out more about Korsmit here, at a cool blog that I love to regularly read, The Artful Desperado.

What I’d probably love to have the most is a display of Charles Clary boxes.

The Artful Desperado also did a recent feature on these amazing handcut paper boxes made by Charles Clary.  I just recently learned of this artist and his technique, but I am so into them.  I find myself looking up pics at random times, and I keep imagining how they’re made… I fantasize about trying to do something similar on my own.

The cuts are so cool or ornate, and the color palettes are so perfect.  I’m in awe of artists who have such an awesome command of colors, and who goes with who, complimentary tones and shades.

Idk, these just evoke so much wonder for me.  Check them out:

a charles clary box - looks like stalagmites, right?

it's like a brain or the magical insides of some flower.

i found this one on a tumblr of tagged charles clary boxes. so awesome.

Art is one of those things, it’s SUCH a huge topic.  Just pick an art you like.  Oh man.  I like oh so many arts.  I can literally think of thousands of pieces I’d die to own.  And my house is hardly the kind with gallery walls and legit lighting.  But still, I love artwork of all kinds.

One of my recent regrets is never truly studying art.  I wish I’d have taken at least a survey class at some point.  I wish I had a command of art school jargon, so I could talk about a painting that I like and not sound like an idiot/hack/poser/child.  I wish I could stroll through a museum and cough up a reasonable reaction to what I see.

It’s also like having a song in your head.  As long as I’m looking at these Charles Clary boxes, I just can’t think of other choices.  I’m trying to avoid being trite and saying something famous enough that everyone and anyone can recognize.  And I don’t want to be a snooty jerkenstein and try to mention something all fancy and rare, unheard of – just for the sake of knowing/liking stuff that isn’t mainstream.

And well, just spitting out a couple recent posts from a blog I follow isn’t very original or clever either, now is it?

I’d be HONORED to own any piece from Jake Roth’s Pathways collection.

here's an image from pathways, one of the safest ones that i can post here.

Be very careful, these are artistic nudes and they are so NSFW.  They’re incredible though.  Here’s the link to buy prints, so you can see the collection. Jake is an amazing photog and a personal friend, I love this series and I’m honored to actually be a part of it.  I won’t pretend that mine photos are the best though, and there are so many others I’d prefer to have over my own.

It’s still so cool to be a part of something so pretty, that’s so well received by most everyone who encounters the collection.

My Dad and Stepmom own one of the coffee-table books that Jake printed, and I think it’s really awesome actually.   They’re very supportive and not judgmental, they appreciate the project for the beauty of what it is.  Maybe that’s weird for some people, but I’m comfy with my participation in Pathways – it’s natural, it’s very symbolic (I was able to choose my path, and the locations I shot in represent a lot to me), and it’s all about coming through life’s challenges, making our own paths, finding our way – and I’m proud of my own path, where I’ve come from and where I’m going.

and finally…

I’d be cool with having a Herakut mural in my house.

a herakut piece in germany, link here.

Typically street art, it would be kinda wack to have something just up in my living room – and I could never imagine anything contained in a frame.  But to have them actually come and make something inside our house would be so rad.

The style is so creepy and dark, I’m not sure if actually having one in my house would weird me out sometimes?  I wonder what visitors would think.  I’m so cheerful and homey is my decor choices these days, lol.

When I was in NYC in 2009, my friend Lynnie and I went to a teeny gallery that was showing some Herakut stuffs.  We hauled way out of our way to go check it out, because I’d heard about the show on Wooster Collective and I really wanted to see it in real life.  I totally liked it, thought it was super cool, and just the feeling of reading something on a blog and then being able to go seek it out for myself was very rad (and not something that often happens when you’re from the sticks!)

my own snapshot from the nyc showing in 2009.

So there you have it: Kormit, Clary, Roth, and Herakut.  Interesting hodgepodge, huh?  That’s so me, though.  I could keep going, I assure.  And if I did… the mix would just wackier and wackier.  I’m sure I’d start to get some tacky Americana handicraft stuff, Amish quilts, more photography… who knows what else.  Like I said, this is one of those things that’s so massively wide open and broad, it’s just about impossible to make any kind of real narrowing down.

Glad you came by to read yet another post TODAY.  I know I’m a beast, but at least I’m good and caught up now!

As always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

Want to see who else is playing?  Check out this list: Cherlyn CochraneJenn MikoLJMelanieLast Civilized WomanPrincesa MusangPrimadonna ZelCarolineKoiAurathenaTerriblethinkerSleep and SalamiMarliz3ePrysmatiqueDLonelyStarAnonymousBurnNicoleSylvia GarzaMarianaNenskeiMyNakedBokkieBluefiadiarriesVeehCirra,BannatreasuresSajeevHappyhippieroseTheFerkelTom Baker*Sofia*Everything Love & Lust*TemptingSweets99, Sites with an * contain NSFW material. If erotic or sexual material is offensive to you, please do not visit these three blogs.

Read the crap I’ve already spewed as part of this 30 Day craziness: Here’s my introDay OneDays Two, Three and FourDay FiveDay Six, Day Seven.

30 Days of Blogging Honesty – Day 7

Alright, alright – I’m hellbent on playing a quick catch up here.  I mean business!  Upper respiratory funk?  So what!  I’ve given up enough of my precious time and productivity to this sickness (was there a productive cough pun in there?  you betcha!). 

Today is another catch up day: here’s “day seven.”

I know I posted “day six” just a little while ago, but I’m trying to get back on track and post in line with the other participants.  So you’re getting another installment today, and it’s a doozy!  (Seriously, as per usual I went nuts and just typed and typed and typed).  Not everyone participating is exactly on the same day, and that’s okay – but I don’t want to be a week behind.  This is getting close enough for me though, and I’ll probably go back to one a day after this.

I’m super duper thankful for everyone’s patience, all the new readers who I’ve met during this event so far (I love that new people have been checking out my happy hippie place! hooray!), I love the encouragement… and even though I never imagined I’d write about poop and pre-marital sex, I’m excited to have something pushing me.

Don’t know what I’m talking about?  Read up here, my intro.  I’m participating in 30 Days of Blogging Honesty, a blogging event created by Tom Baker and Cherlyn Cochrane; you can check out the rules and see all of the prompts right here.

Want to see who else is playing?  Check out this list: Cherlyn CochraneJenn MikoLJMelanieLast Civilized WomanPrincesa MusangPrimadonna ZelCarolineKoiAurathenaTerriblethinkerSleep and SalamiMarliz3ePrysmatiqueDLonelyStarAnonymousBurnNicoleSylvia GarzaMarianaNenskeiMyNakedBokkieBluefiadiarriesVeehCirra,BannatreasuresSajeevHappyhippieroseTheFerkelTom Baker*Sofia*Everything Love & Lust*TemptingSweets99, Sites with an * contain NSFW material. If erotic or sexual material is offensive to you, please do not visit these three blogs.

Read the crap I’ve already spewed as part of this 30 Day craziness: Day One, Days Two, Three and Four, Day FiveDay Six.

That’s a lot of links, eh?  If you’ve any time at all left to actually read this post, let’s get to it now!

….

Day 07 — I went to see a psychic, and was given the opportunity to ask three questions – I would ask…

Nothing? 

I don’t really believe in psychics to tell you the truth.  At least not most of the ones, the kind that charge a bunch of money and claim to read your future.  Many of the ones I’ve ever encountered seem to be rip-off city.  And well, you can never truly know the intentions of someone trying to use and harness supernatural powers.  That kind of stuff can get real serious and real dangerous, and I’m not sure it’s such a good idea to go and open yourself up to that kind of thing.

heh, this cracks me up. do you agree? money-making scam? or legit future/spirit insights? image was found here.

Don’t get me wrong – I believe in psychics.  I’ve had plenty of my own unexplainable encounters, I know that the supernatural is real.  I’m open-minded to all kinds of unexplainable things… I truly believe I’ve experienced ghosts (or whatever you want to call that phenomenon), I think that there are all kinds of things that go on that we don’t understand or even know about, non-human supernatural things.  God and Jesus are supernatural entities, as well as the miracles and all kinds of wonders explained in the Bible (immaculate conception and burning bushes aren’t the typical stuff our earthly existence is made of).

So it’s not for lack of believing!

My viewpoint and thoughts on this matter are actually because of how serious I know this type of stuff can be.  Some things we just shouldn’t go meddling in.  Self-protection is one thing, being faced with something when you don’t ask for it or open yourself up to it is one thing – going out, seeking it, looking for trouble, that’s another thing altogether!

I’ve been to psychics in the past and from my experience there’s a lot of bullcrap that goes on, a lot of generic fluff that could be true for anyone.  Sometimes I think I have my own borderline insights.  I’ve had dreams come true, I’ve guessed things or known things that I had no way of knowing based on the info available to me.  My hunches and instincts are usually pretty right-on, and in an attempt to be modest and keep my nose out of trouble, I chalk it up to being a good observer, with good common sense, people skills and insight.

I used to be REALLY superstitious.  Probably OCD (I’ve been diagnosed as OCD by two diff doctors, I do NOT use that term as slang or hyperbole for when I’m quirky or hyper-organized, I mean legit OCD).

In an attempt to break off some of my more intrusive habits, the ones that infringe on my day-to-day like (like counting steps all the time, being unable to pick anything up that’s “face down” on the floor, and so on… they get way worse)… so in order to break off of the control these weird unfounded fake beliefs had over me AND to show my true faith and trust in God, I walked away from a lot of this crap.

gah! this so used to be me, all of these and more. i'd make my own up too. my mom used to always tell me those little superstition rhymes.. i think that's where it started for me. found this image over here.

I used to make up ultimatums all time – weird stuff.  I’d tell myself, “if I grab a red Skittle first without looking, I’m going to have really good luck today,”  or “if my friend calls me back within 3 minutes, it means I’m totally going to pass my test.”  It gets weirder too… it gets more intense.  I hated all the counting I would do, I used to do this weird “layered thought” thing where I’d narrate all of my thoughts and once I would start doing it, it was so hard to turn off.  Like when you think about breathing, it takes so long to go back to just breathing without obsession.

So yeah.  I decided to make a clean break.  No more rituals.  No more counting, over-thinking, no making weird fictional “deals” with myself.  No horoscopes.  No tarot cards, numerology, none of it.  So in that pile, I toss on psychics and other seers. I think that God is stoked on my decision.  I’m telling Him that I trust Him, and things will happen in His time, as He sees fit, according to His plan.  And my end of the deal is to chill, let life happen, have faith, and handle things as they happen – and reach out to God whenever I need reassurance, help, comfort, guidance.  Him and Him alone!

i love this pic - I turn to my God for all my needs. I found this pretty picture right over here.

But… of course there’s a but.  This IS the 30 days of blogging HONESTLY, and I have some hypocrisy to cop to.

I watch the TLC Reality Show, Long Island Medium.  It’s the wackiest show, I know.  I actually first started reading it as more of a lark than anything serious.  The star of the show, Theresa Caputo, is so very over the top.  She’s a super stereotypical Long Island mom who claims to be a medium – she has access to the spirit world of deceased people, and she can communicate with these souls.

here's theresa, the long island medium! have you ever seen this show?

(^The pic above is from TLC’s website.  I’m giving you the link here, because the last time I opened it up to check it out, it totally froze + crashed my whole browser (Chrome).  So annoying, right?  I hate that.  The page runs slow and takes forever to load… so I’m pretty miffed right now, lol.  I also am trying my durndest to NOT be superstitious.  I sit here and say how I’m not into psychics and people who try to meddle with the super natural, and then I go and blab about this one medium I’m okay watching and bam! The page for her show crashes.  Is that a sign?  Or just coincidence.  You tell me.)

My Duggs is from Strong Island, so when I first heard about this show I had to tune in just to get a good giggle.  He loves where he’s from, and he’s also super annoyed at all the crazy behavior that just screams I’m-from-Long-Island!!  I tuned in to get a laugh back in the first season, and what I found instead was the really sweet show about a pretty amazing lady.

she's soooooo long island! photo from this site.

She claims to love God, she’s a Christian.  And what she does (as portrayed on the show) is actually a nice thing.  Her “gift” brings an awful lot of closure and peace to people.  She delivers messages of hope, encouragement, love and peace to those she “reads.”   Theresa claims that “spirit” (that’s her word for this other plane that she communicates with) seeks her out, it’s something she can’t shut off or ignore.  She’ll be out running errands and feel compelled to tell total strangers the messages she feels nagging at her, she also takes private paid readings.  It’s her career.  She says her bookings are full for more than a year in advance, she’s world-renowned.

she makes hilarious and awesome facial expressions, she's such a character! found this photo here too.

I’ve seen the old John Edward show, Crossing Over.  I thought that guy was super fugazi. He did those big studio audience readings… he’s say, “I’m getting the letter A… does anyone have the letter A?”  Everyone knows the letter A, so a ton of hands would go up – “My mother was Annette,” or “My cousin passed and we used to call him Ace as a nickname,” “I’m from Austin, TX – it’s where my uncle died.”  And then he’d pick one and keep going with more vague imagery, and often the person being read would lead him there, proving the info he needed.  That + strong observation + educated guesses + who knows what back-stage pre-show research went on = he could deliver a reading that seemed impressive.

john edward, totally bologna - right? what are your thoughts? found this pic on this page.

Theresa does the letter thing, and she scribbles down little notes… like times, numbers, catch phrases, expressions.  On a recent episode she was reading a widow and Theresa wrote down “11:11.”  When she asked the client if that meant anything, she said, “Do you know what 11:11 means?  Do you find yourself always looking at the clock when it’s 11:11?’  The client said that her husband died at 11:11, and she always notices that time.

She’ll do the letter thing, sometimes she guesses a name… “They’re telling M, like Mike or Mark.”  “Oh yeah, Michael was my brother.”

The 11:11 thing could go either way.  LOTS of people notice the clock when it’s 11:11, right? It’s a superstitious time.  I think that people who would be down to chat with a medium are likely the kind to be into other beliefs like that.

But when she pulls these other things out of thin air, I’m impressed.  She’ll know the way someone died, she’ll bring up memories of specific events, or talk about significant things – she knows the hobbies and interests of those who passed, she’ll be able to describe the personality of someone.  She claims that all she knows about the client is their first name and a phone number (in case she needs to cancel and/or to confirm the appt time).  And like I said, she’s always going up to total strangers.  All kinds of super skeptics give testimonials after a reading saying that Theresa knew details and tidbits that there’s no way she could have known.

Here’s a video clip that shows a little bit about what she does and in her own words she explains her abilities:

Long Island Medium Star Discusses Her Gift

(if that doesn’t work – my attempt to embed it – here’s the link).

(Why do I always write so much?  Why am I so long winded?).

Anyways.  I’m not sure how I feel about her.  I think that if her ability to connect to the dead is real, well, that’s AMAZING.  For so many people, death brings with it a lot of unanswered questions, hurt feelings, loose ends.  If there’s a woman who can bring peace and closure – well, I think that’s a wonderful thing to offer others.  I get the impression that she truly has good and noble intentions.

I fully admit that I’m super duper gullible, easily duped.  I’m naïve as all get out.

But, I do like her.  I get the vibe that she’s a good woman and she’s helping others.  She’s a family lady – her kids and hubby are on the show too.  And she’s funny, thoughtful, she seems to really take her gift seriously and she employs a lot of tact.  Well, she is from Long Island… so how one defines “tact” is up in the air, lol.  She’s delicate when she has something sensitive in nature to say, though.

Another cool video, the show’s producer explains Theresa, the show, readings, how it works, and more:

Long Island Medium’s Executive Producer

(again, the link in case that doesn’t show up the right way).

So, maybe she is evil or on the wrong side of the spiritual spectrum, and she is using her powers for dark purposes… maybe she’s in communication with the devil and that’s where she gets her insight?  Perhaps she’s unwittingly doing so.  I know that those things are vital to consider, and I don’t rule anything out.  I don’t know, nor do I have a way of knowing.

But, I sure do believe in the gift of prophecy.  I know that sometimes God really does use us to help one another in a special way, providing us with divine insight.

Also, I’ve read “Heaven is For Real” and I totally believe the story the Burpo family tells.  (If you haven’t read it yet, do so!  It’s a quick read and it will just warm your heart.  A little boy technically “dies” during surgery and has an incredible vivid experience in Heaven with Jesus).

love this book! here, go check out the amazon site to read more about it. it's also whereabouts i snagged this lovely pic.


So, I’m very open-minded to all kinds of paranormal / supernatural occurrences.  I want Theresa to be legit, and I want her to be on the good team, a believer in God, and speaking the truth about the people who are up in Heaven with Him. I really want her to be for real!

If Theresa was legit and good and her gift is God-given AND I had the chance to get a reading from her… I can think of three things (at least!) that I’d want to know.  Oh man, there are so many things I’d like to know.  But this prompt asked me to name three.

1. Are all of my deceased loved ones doing okay?  Are they all in Heaven? (of course I’m asking multi-part questions! ha!).

2. Are the encounters that I’ve had with deceased loved ones real?  Was it really them – when I sense someone watching or with me, looking out for me, is that real?

3. Are there any messages for me or for other living loved ones that I can pass along to offer peace, closure, or say something that needs to be said?

I’d love to know more.  I can be patient though.  I know that once I get to Heaven (to which I’m in no rush to do, I love being alive and in this life on earth), I’ll get to be reunited with everyone, and I’ll get to have so many questions answered.  But there’s a lot of sadness amongst my family over people who’ve been taken too soon, I have passed friends who I think about often, and I miss them.

I’m named after my maternal Grandmother.  She died before I was born, but I have so much in common with her, and I so badly want to know her.  I’d love to have a conversation with her, to know that she’s proud of me and she watches out for me.  I want to know that she’s in peace now and she’s not suffering anymore.

Yeah, if I ever got the chance to really break that barrier and have a chat with our angels there would be tons of things to talk about.  A million questions to ask.

I guess from the tone of this blog and my abundant enthusiasm, it’s plain to see that I really do dig Theresa Caputo and I extend a lot of credit to her.  It’s a balancing act though, a fine line.  I don’t ever want to follow a false prophet or insult God – I don’t want to get mixed up in something dark or bad, evil or untrue.  I know when it boils down, the best and safest, most sure way to do just this is to trust only God!

But much like I trust in various Pastors to teach me about God’s Word, interpret, to pray for me or with me… I think there’s some amount of trusting one another that’s okay.  Usually I just defer to my gut and my hunches (it is, afterall, that part of God within me that steers and guides my own conscience).

So while I must play it safe and keep Daddio as #1 forevs – I do have curiosities, which I hope are harmless.

WHEW!

Was that a doozy of a post or what?  Man.  These crazy prompts, I tell ya!  I was going to try and write up Days Seven AND EIGHT in here but yeah, I went on way too long for all that.  Times a million.

Stay tuned for day eight’s post very soon, and keep encouraging me.  Are you digging these 30 Days?  I feel like I’m certainly finding inspiration in the topics and that while doing so I’m getting out of my normal comfort zone.  It’s been fun, albeit very very wacky.

As always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr