White elephant challenge, guinea pig style

stuffed white elephant in a carriage

I (or more accurately, my furbabies) received the funky playhouse below from Rory at  A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip as part of the white elephant challenge created by Teresa of The Haunted Wordsmith.  This is what the white elephant challenge is all about:

Every day I kick the party off by listing three fellow bloggers and the gift I give them. No one is obligated to participate (though if people do, it’ll be more fun). If the gift recipient wants to participate, they will pick three bloggers and give them gifts. And so on until the following day. At that time I will share some of the funnier gifts that people have given or received.

creepy treehouse

Instead of gifting three specific bloggers, I’m going to give one gift to everyone, because we could all use a little more cuteness in our lives.  And no, this isn’t one of my own guinea pigs, because alas I don’t have a mini Santa hat. Merry Christmas!

How to build a mental health blog

It’s easy to get caught up in the numbers game, but I think what’s really important in building a high quality mental health blog is engagement with the mental health community.  This has little to do with numbers and a whole lot to do with human connection.  I’m by no means an expert on any of this, but here are some strategies I’ve stumbled across in my time blogging that hopefully you might find useful when it comes to engagement.

Interact with the blogging community

This is my biggest recommendation.  Read other blogs that are in your niche, and like and comment on those blogs.  Search in the WordPress reader for blogs in that niche that you’re not following yet.  Also, check who else is commenting on the blogs you’re following; that can be a good way to connect with some new people who are interested in the same kind of topics.  Be genuine about trying to engage, because if you get spammy about it, you’re only likely to generate eye rolls.

Make sure your gravatar is connected to your blog site.  Click on your gravatar image on the top right corner of the WordPress reader website, and scroll down to profile links.  Make sure your correct blog address is there.  Sometimes I’ll see someone has followed me and I’m interested in checking out their blog, but I can’t get to it because I get a message saying the blog no longer exists.

If you get an idea from someone else’s post for a topic you want to write about, run with it.  Just make sure to include a link to their post in your own post.  It’s a good way to show you appreciate other bloggers and are part of the community dialogue.

Make your blog easy to read

I think this is particularly important in the mental health blogging niche, since a lot of us have problems with concentration related to our illnesses.  Pay attention to the length of your paragraphs.  With really long paragraphs you run the risk that the reader (such as me) won’t be able to maintain focus through a long unbroken wall of text and will give up on reading that post.  That doesn’t mean you can’t have long posts; just break them up into smaller paragraphs, and maybe throw an image in there somewhere.

Also, think about whether your choices of font and background colours are are easy to read.  Bright colours may add visual interest, but if they’re making it harder to focus on the text readers may be less likely to finish the whole post, which means they’re not going to be interacting with what you have to say.

Include some evergreen content

Evergreen content doesn’t go out of date, and people will continue to read and engage with it well after it’s first published.  A sign that you’ve got some evergreen content is when you keep getting a trickle of views/likes/comments weeks or months after you’ve published a post.  Consider doing a follow-up posts on those topics or doing similar kinds of posts every so often to get a mix of evergreen and right-now kind of content.

Use social media

I’m not on Facebook or Instagram, so I can’t comment on those.  On Twitter, you definitely get back what you put in.  I tend to find Twitter overwhelming so I’m not very active on it, and that’s reflected in the amount of traffic that it directs to my blog.

With Pinterest, I used to pin straight from my published blog posts, and got very little traffic.  At some point I started creating designs on Canva and using those to make pins connected to my blog posts.  This bumped up my traffic from Pinterest considerably.  It’s hard to say how many of those people are actually engaging with my posts, but at least there’s the possibility.

Consider SEO

I’m certainly not a search engine optimization (SEO) guru.  Wordpress doesn’t offer advanced SEO tools on the free plan, so I have no experience there, but there are still some things you can do.  I got almost no traffic from search engines in the early days, and it wasn’t until my blog had grown substantially that I started to see that it was reaching people doing mental health-related searches  Still, I think it’s worth getting a foundation of some basic SEO strategies in place right from the get-go.

Google loves external links to your site; these show that not only are you active on your blog, but you’re out there in the broader online community.  These links can be hard to accumulate, but guest posting on other sites (see the next section) can definitely help.  Internal links also matter; this refers to links you include in a post to other posts on your site.  These links can also help your readers to refer back to your other content they may have missed originally.  Google Search Console is a useful tool for keeping track of all this, although I’ve noticed for my blog it seems to be overlooking a lot of my internal links.

Google (and of course blog readers) pays attention to your post name and headings, so make sure those accurately reflect your content.  You can also use tags for your posts, although keep in mind WordPress allows a maximum of 15 tags, after which it will just ignore all your tags.  Making sure your tags are relevant helps people to find your posts.  Google can’t see the images on your site, but what it can see is the “alt text” for each image, so you should enter a descriptive alt text for every image you use.  This is also helpful for any of your readers who are visually impaired.

Share your story

If you share your story with popular mental health sites like Stigma Fighters and Time to Change you can reach a much broader audience, and that can bring some brand new readers back to engage with your blog.  You can find listings of a variety of sites you can submit your writing to in my posts Spreading your writing wings and Ways to share your story.

Another option is to keep an eye out for fellow bloggers looking for a guest poster, or talk to a blogger you engage with regularly about doing a collaboration.  It can help you connect with other bloggers you might not have encountered yet.

Other sources of information

There are countless sites and articles with tips about increasing blog traffic.  Probably the most useful I’ve come across is a post on Startbloggingonline.com.  It has an extensive list of options, and while some of them are more business-oriented, many are also useful for the casual blogger.  A lot of sites focus on monetization, and it’s easy to start feeling like you’re drowning in the sea of information when it comes to that.  Keep in mind whether tips on a given site are geared toward a blog with the same purpose as yours, because pushy marketing strategies are probably not going to be very successful with a smaller-scale mental health blog.

Conclusion

There is no one right way to blog.  The most important thing is that it feels right for you.  Having engagement on your blog, whether that’s 10 loyal followers or 1000, can help make the blogging experience more meaningful.

What has helped you to generate engagement on your blog?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Canadian Thanksgiving actually happened a month ago, but I missed the boat on  that, so I thought I’d wish everyone a happy American Thanksgiving.  It’s also a good time to say how thankful I am for all of you.  This is an amazing community we’ve got going on, and I appreciate all of you every day.

Some other things I’m thankful for today:

  • my guinea pigs
  • my cozy home
  • my massage therapist
  • yummy fall comfort food
  • cozy slippers
  • being able to express myself through writing
  • being able to watch the birds outside my window
  • essential oils

What are you most thankful for today?

 

 

20(ish) Questions

I’m taking a break from doing blog awards since they can be time-consuming.  Instead, when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format.  I’ll also answer questions from assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s It’s Just Plain Silly!

  • How come you press harder on a remote control when you know the battery is dead?  I may be totally deluded, but I swear when the battery is on it’s last legs and you lean on it a bit, it might give one last gasp of power.
  • If an orange is orange, why isn’t a lime called a green or a lemon called a yellow?  Well why isn’t a pumpkin an orange?  The whole system is messed up.
  • Why is it that when you’re driving and looking for an address, you turn down the volume on the radio?  I actually don’t do that.  What I do instead is swear.  Loudly and repeatedly.
  • Why is lemon juice made with artificial flavor and dishwashing liquid made with real lemons?  The lemon juice has artificial flavor because the makers are just as lazy as we are and can’t be bothered juicing a lemon and having to pick out the damn seeds.  And the closest dish soap has come to real lemons is the factory being down the street from the lemon farm.  You’d have to have super powers to throw a lemon off the tree and hit the dishwashing factory.
  • Why does the sun lighten our hair, but darken our skin?  I have to bite my tongue (fingers?) to keep from putting the correct answer, but instead I’ll say the California beach babe looks turns the sun on.
  • Why is it that people say they “slept like a baby” when babies wake up like every two hours?  And if you’ve ever been on a long-haul flight, you know how tempting it can be to pick up said baby and toss it down into the baggage compartment.  (no, I’m not actually a child abuser)
  • Why isn’t 11 pronounced “onety-one”?  I think we need to start a Change.org petition to get that shit taken care of.  One-teen is another option.  Eleven is just ridiculous.
  • What disease did cured ham actually have?  Syphilis.  It just needed a penicillin injection in the pork butt.
  • If electricity comes from electrons, does morality come from morons?  No way, because we have a shit ton of morons in this world yet are sadly lacking in morality.
  • What is something that everyone looks stupid doing?  Using a squat toilet and trying to reach for the non-existent toilet paper.

 

Questions from Nicole at Northern Irish Girl Online for the Sunshine Blogger Award:

  • What would your autobiography be called?  Crazy Guinea Pig Lady
  • Which animal would be the King/Queen/President (other gender-neutral terms are available and can be used, here) when (yes, I said when, the AI’s won’t be taking over, animals will) the animal kingdom rise up and take over?  Guinea pigs would slide on in because they’re just so cute no one would take them seriously until all of a sudden they’re dominating the world.
  • You’re on death row for a crime of your choice, what did you do, why did you do it, and what would your last meal be and why?  We don’t do death penalty in Canada, but I suppose I could be extradited to the US if I had happened to be doing some cross-border shopping, spotted a person who bullied me in the past, and ran his sorry ass over with my car (and backed up to do it again a few more times).  Last meal would be KFC.  And toss in some prosecco to drink straight outta the bottle.  Classy all the way.
  • If your pet/child or the fly that lives in your bedroom if you have neither, had to give you a reference for your dream job, what would they say and do you think you’d get the job?  My guinea pigs would say I do a pretty good job of feeding them, but I don’t give them nearly enough vegetables.  I’m not sure why they’d think that matters for a prospective job, but I’ve got to respect their priorities.
  • A penguin walks through the door right now wearing a sombrero. What does he say and why is he here?  Probably it’s because I chugged that whole bottle of prosecco mentioned in the question above and I’m hallucinating.
  • How would you sell hot chocolate (cocoa) in the hottest country in the world?  It could be a billion degrees outside in India and people there would tell you that hot tea would be just the thing to help cool you down.  Converting them to cocoa could be more of a challenge.
  • If you were a pizza delivery person, how would you benefit from the use of scissors?  That would depend on whether or not I was Macgyver.
  • If you could have a machine that produced £100 for life, how much would you be willing to pay for it?  I’m awfully cheap, so I might try to get the guinea pigs to steal it for me.
  • If you could have dinner with three people alive or dead, who would you pick and why?  Having been in Italy recently, I’m going to go with the Renaissance artists (3 plus 1 bonus) who correspond to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Donatello.  We could chat about anatomically correct statues of naked men, and why I had a crush on Raphael (the turtle version) when I was a kid.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’m taking a break from doing blog awards since they can be time-consuming.  Instead, when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format.  I’ll also answer questions from assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from My Mind Reels Through Film:

  • what’s the most dangerous situation you have ever been in?  Slovakia, 2003, middle of the night, had accidentally gotten on the wrong carriage on the train.  Once the train was moving at full steam ahead, a staff person was leading us to the proper carriage.  Except as we were moving between carriages nothing was closed in and the only thing between us and the ground was a little bit of air.  Yikes.
  • what’s your favourite culture?  My own because it’s comfortable to me, but aside from that I think it’s hard to compare something on such a broad level.  A culture may have a very reach history but treat certain members like dirt.
  • what do you dislike about your own culture?  There have been improvements, but there’s still too much white privilege and gendering of society for my liking.
  • your favourite type of travel?  Backpacking overseas.  This isn’t quite as much the case any more, but I used to get huge satisfaction of finding the cheapest possible accommodation.  $1 USD per night in Phnom Penh, Cambodia was pretty darn exciting.
  • do you feel understood?  On WordPress, yes.  In ‘real life’ – yeah, not so much.
  • how do you feel about your body?  I’m just on the doorstep of 40, and I think of my body more in terms of function than aesthetics compared to when I was younger.
  • what is your favourite film?  Dirty Dancing – “No one puts Baby in a corner!”
  • are you adventurous with food? In general no, but one time I did have snail soup from a sidewalk vendor for breakfast in Vietnam, and I thought that was fairly adventurous.
  • have you ever hated a place and wanted to come home?  I didn’t hate India overall, but I hated how sick it made me, and I just wanted to go home to my own toilet.
  • are you bothered about others seeing you naked?  I’ve never been a fan of wandering around naked, in stark contrast to my father, which always grossed me out.
  • Are you a good loser?  Nope!
  • what was the favourite time of your life?  I liked the carefree party days back when I was doing my first university degree.  How can you not have fun dancing to S Club Party in the campus pub?
  • Do you have a close family connection  I’ve always been close to my grandma who is now 101 years old.  She’s just about to go into a care home, which is going to be a weird transition.
  • can you speak another language?  Not fluently, but I have a pretty good understanding of guinea pig.
  • will Trump be in for another term?  Dear god I hope not.  But looking southward from Canada, it’s truly bizarre that someone so far removed from simple facts has such popularity.
  • what are your thoughts on English people?  They eat Branston pickle, something I will never understand.  And Marmite.  ((shudder))
  • was life better without mobile phones?  Say you’re out having coffee with a friend.  You’re having a discussion about Branston pickle, and you’re not sure what the ingredients are.  Smartphone to the rescue!
  • what has been the biggest change in your life?  That all depends on what you want to look at as the starting point.  To follow up on the previous question, now I can look up Branston pickle in 2 seconds on my smartphone, whereas 20 years ago it might have taken me 10 minutes just to connect to dial-up internet (or far longer if someone else was using the phone).  If you’re my age you know what I’m talking about.  It’s a sound you never forget.
  • is climate change real?  I’m guessing the people who’ve had their homes destroyed by hurricanes would be jumping up and down yelling a resounding “yes!”
  • why do you like answering questions?  It lets me tap into my sense of humour, which is normally missing in action these days.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’m taking a break from doing blog awards since they can be time-consuming.  Instead, when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format.  I’ll also answer questions from assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

A few questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s Game On series – the philosophy of living life:

  • What is your take on ‘free will?’  We may have free will, but there’s a lot of free won’t floating around to get in the way.
  • We all ask ourselves at one time or another what is the point?  So what is the point to our existence?  There is no point.  Ah, the simplicity of being an atheist.
  • What is your belief on fate and Karma?  Lady karma got run over by a train a while back.
  • As a species, how do you think humans will become extinct or do you believe that we will not?  We’re killing off so many other species, I’m sure we’ll manage to kill ourselves off too.
  • What is your belief with regards the meaning of life?  It’s hidden inside a container of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream.
  • Ok, fess up, do you believe in aliens from outer space – is there really other life out there in the far reaching galaxies beyond our own?  It seems rather implausible that in this vast universe ours is the only planet with life.  But do those alien life forms know about us, and even if they do, do they give a shit about us?  Unlikely.
  • What doesn’t kill us – makes us stronger – yes or no? Explain.  Food poisoning doesn’t kill m (at least not yet).  It also doesn’t make me stronger.
  • If you could find out the exact time and cause of your death – would you want to know?  Nope.  Imagine all the time I’d end up spending on to do lists of shit to get done before dying.
  • Is it more important to help yourself, help your family, help your society, or help the world?  Well, no one else is going to help me if I don’t, so I’ll go with that.
  • What is the biggest waste of human potential?  Donald Trump.
  • Why do you think that as a species, humans need to believe in something? Be this religion, fate, karma, magical, mystique and so on.  Because it’s rather uninspiring to think that there’s no point to any of this.  Plus it can be a convenient cop-out to avoid facing up to one’s own bad behaviour.
  • If we could not retain any of our memories – who would we be?  We would be a bunch of people who didn’t pee in toilets because we wouldn’t remember what toilets are.
  • Time is such an important part of our world, but do you think you would notice if time was altered in any way?  Time is subjective anyway, and you throw in Einstein’s curvature of space time and then you’re all kinds of confused.
  • How important is play in living a healthy and fulfilling life?  I think the guinea pigs are a good model of healthy living, and they make plenty of time for play.
  • With no laws or rules to influence your behavior, how do you think you would behave?  I would wear pyjamas all the time.
  • Should euthanasia be legal? Why or why not?  Yes, I think people should have the right to die with dignity.  But this brings to mind the first time I heard the word euthanasia.  I was in high school at the time, and wondered what the big deal was about youth in Asia.

 

Questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s Game On series – Adventures and Travels:

  • What is the last holiday you took?  I recently went to Italy.
  • What is your most favourite place in all of the world that you have seen?  I’ve been to so many amazing places I’m not sure how I would pick.
  • Do you think travelling enriches your life, your learning, your wisdom or it’s just time off?  I think travelling is amazing for promoting an open mind.  Seeing all of the different ways other people live is a great way to see how we’re so diverse, yet fundamentally we’re all the same.
  • Recently l read, and it’s not new about windowless aircraft which will be the future of air travel, what are your views on this?  I’m indifferent to windows.  What matters to me, being on the taller side, is leg room.  I’m that person who will beat on you through the back of your seat if you try to recline it and take away a few precious inches of my legroom.  Manspreading is also an issue.  On a recent flight I sat next to a dude whose knees and elbows were both venturing into my seat territory, and I was very unimpressed.
  • In your opinion what is a great quote that symbolises adventuring and travelling?  I had to do a Google search for this, and found a good one from the late Anthony Bourdain: “Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.”
  • What is a great song to get you in the mood for adventuring? [provide link please]  Down Under by Men at Work. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfR9iY5y94s
  • When on holiday, travelling or adventuring – do you take books/kindle to read or simply rest on the knowledge that your time away is enough to provide all your stimulation anyway?  I used to take paper books and now I take my ereader.  It’s good for down-time like waiting at train stations.
  • Five best holidays you have had and list why?  They’ve all been good.  Definitely one of my faves was going on safari in Kenya and Tanzania and seeing all the wildlife.
  • Do you have a favourite blog that deals with adventuring or travelling that you read before you go?  Lonely Planet has always been my go-to for travel advice.
  • Are you a soloist traveller or prefer company?  Solo
  • What is the most significant lesson you have learned when adventuring?  That a little bit of impromptu sign language and a handful of super-basic English words pronounced in a local-style accent can go a long way in overcoming language barriers.
  • When in a new location, what are the first five things you check or do to ensure your adventure/holiday is successful?  First thing is figuring out the toilet situation.  You also have to figure out how to buy tickets for trains and various things – is this a rigid queue kind of place, or an elbows flying free for all?  You also have to watch how the locals cross the street.  Are traffic signals actually followed, or are they seen as more of a mild suggestion?
  • Are you a rigid planner for adventures, or just throw a few things into a bag and let the day take you wherever?  I plan.  That lets me be more efficient, which allows me to see/do more.
  • In your opinion what do you think is needed to make an adventure/holiday really successful?  A sense of curiosity.
  • Are you totally relaxed as in let your hair completely down, or hang on to a sense of reticence?  Being a solo traveller I’m cautious in some ways in order to stay safe, but otherwise I’m pretty relaxed.
  • How important is adventuring/holdaying away to you?  Very.
  • Are you completely and utterly true to your personality when ‘away’ or do you become someone else?  I’m more outgoing in general when I’m travelling.
  • You have been gifted a 42 day holiday of your dreams all expenses paid – where would you choose to go?  I’d really like to go to Tibet.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’m taking a break from doing blog awards since they can be time-consuming.  Instead, when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format.  I’ll also answer questions from assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

A few questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s Game On series – weird life stuff

  • Why are supposedly easy to open packages always so difficult to open?   To make doofuses like me feel really stupid.
  • Time to fess up … what music from your teenage years do you turn on and still dance to?  It’s not so much from my teenage years as my childhood in the 80’s – a little New Kids on the Block, Belinda Carlisle, Roxette…  Ah, good times…
  • What was either weirdest book you ever read or the weirdest film you ever saw? [Please provide link]  When I was in university a roommate of mine was doing a paper about porn, and so she wanted all of us roomies to watch porn together.  I think we were all virgins at the time.  Anyway, we borrowed Ass-openers 8 (or whatever number it was) on VHS from one of our guy friends, and had a girls night in watching Ass-openers.  It was very educational, and no, I will not be providing a link.
  • Time to fess up again, what was the weirdest or craziest fashion craze you were in to as a kid?  Well, since acid wash jeans have made a comeback that probably doesn’t count.  Perhaps the neon spandex bike shorts.
  • What words did you make up and claim as your own as a kid?  I wasn’t much of a neologist as a kid, but my brother made up a ton of words and the rest of the family adopted many of them.
  • In what game is the word snap used?  Going back to the 80’s theme, one in which you’re wearing a snap bracelet?
  • Have you ever gotten completely and utterly lost? Explain please.  Living in neat, orderly Canada I assumed that streets everywhere had names and signs displaying those names.  And then I started travelling and discovered yeah, not so much.  I have a good sense of direction and am good at reading maps, but there were a few times I got completely lost in India because of the total lack of street signs.
  • Did you have a favourite piece of clothing as a kid or even as an adult? [For me it’s my sneakers, serioulsy old and battered but l love them!]  I am totally in love with Gap maternity leggings.  No, I’m not pregnant, but these leggings fit right over my psych-med-weight-baby and they’re the comfiest thing ever.
  • Do you have any strange family traditions?  I could say we celebrate Festivus, except I’d be lying (unfortunately).
  • Have you ever taken part in some kind of weird adventure?  When I was in university and living in residence my roommates and I had somehow managed to break our toilet tank lid in half.  One night we pulled off a switcheroo and swapped our broken toilet tank lid with one we stole from a washroom elsewhere in the building.  And we were drunk at the time, so we thought it was the funniest thing ever.
  • What is the ‘worst haircut’ you have ever had?  In grade 4 I cut my hair short and used hair gel to make it spiky.  Not a good look at all.
  • Can you remember who your worst school teacher was?  His name was Mr. Boyd.  He taught grade 9 honours math, but he was a PE teacher and hadn’t the slightest clue about math.  We’re talking 3×4=14 kind of thing.
  • We all have one, but who is yours? The crazy relative?  That would have to be me.  But I do recall a hillbilly cousin Gerald that my dad didn’t want visiting back in the day.
  • What completely safe animal are you TOTALLY afraid of??  Moths.  They’re like the ugly drunk uncle of the butterfly stumbling around and just generally being icky.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

Ways to share your story

In my post Spreading your writing wings I listed a number of sites where you could share your story or submit a guest blog.  Personally, I find it easy to feel comfortable about sharing my writing on my own blog, but there’s some uncertainty that comes along with submitting a post to another site.  So I try to push myself every so often to venture out of my comfort zone.  Here are a few more ideas on ways to share your work:

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance Life Unlimited feature: you can submit a request to be featured; submissions should focus on what the early indications were of your illness, what you’ve had to overcome, or what you’ve learned about yourself

GoodTherapy: personal experience, story must be 500+ words and original work

Having Time: personal essays about major life transitions, or actionable tips on improving mental wellbeing

Ideapod: this site isn’t specific to mental health, but accepts guest articles that “present bold, clear arguments about the ideas you believe should shape our future”

Mindful magazine: you can submit a mental health-related story pitch

Mind of Our Own: lets you share your mental health story in whatever form you wish; can be anonymous

Old Cove Road: particularly focused on the intersections between mental health, community, and social media

Open Minds Quarterly: share the experience of life with mental illness, in various forms including non-fiction, fiction, or poetry

Psyche: part of the Vocal media group; articles must be original content, and you can get paid based on how many reads your article gets

ResilientApp: accepts guest posts on a range of topics including mindfulness, meditation, self-care, and managing stress or anxiety

SameBoat: you can post in different topic areas including depression, suicide, anxiety. and body image

 

Of course, you can always keep an eye out on WordPress for fellow bloggers who are looking to collaborate or accepting guest posts.  If you’re reading this and you’re looking for guest bloggers on your blog, please leave your blog link in the comments below.

 

 

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Liz at My Wellbeing and Learning Journey:

  • Are you a city, beach, or country girl?  I’m a city girl.  I grew up in a small town and was not at all impressed.  I do have this unrealistic dream, though, of spending my later years on a little hobby farm in the middle of nowhere surrounded by various furry critters.  I would be completely incompetent at maintaining said farm, but hey, a girl’s gotta dream.
  • If you could choose to live anywhere, where would it be and why?  I think where I live now (Vancouver, Canada) is pretty great.  For one, it’s in Canada, but also it’s pretty cool that you can go from the beach to being on top of a ski hill in less than an hour.
  • Do you have tattoos?  I have 3.  A dolphin on my right hip, Chinese characters on my left hip, and a phoenix on the left side of my ribcage.
  • What are your favourite hobbies?  I think blogging is my only hobby.
  • After a stressful day, what do you do, to help you relax at the end of the day?  Snuggles with the guinea pigs, plus maybe a funny video for distraction.
  • Are you a spring, summer, autumn, or winter person?  I like early autumn, when it’s still sunny and warm-ish, but the leaves are starting to change.  I hate winters where I live – it rains for weeks at a time and sunny days are very few and far between.
  • Sweet or savoury?  I don’t think I could pick just one – both are so yummy!  What I’m not keen on is spicy or bitter.

 

Questions from Marie-Céline:

  1. What is your top tip for writing a blog post?  Write with yourself and what you want to express in mind, and try not to focus on what other people are likely to think.
  2. Which Country do you live in?  Canada – best country in the world!
  3. Do you like to travel?  Yes, I’ve always liked travelling, and it’s probably something I picked up from my parents.  I try to do an international trip almost every year, although sometimes my illness gets in the way.
  4. What is your favourite music?  I don’t really have a favourite.  I’ve got a bunch of songs loaded on my iPhone, and listen to whatever I’m in the mood for.
  5. What is your favourite food?  Cheeseburgers!  And I answer this question often enough that I’ll spice it up and add toppings of the day.  Today will be the oldie but goodie combo of bacon and cheddar.
  6. If you could collaborate with another blogger, who would you choose?  Maybe the author Jenny Lawson, who wrote Furiously Happy, because I think she’s totally hilarious.
  7. Do any of your friends or family have a blog?  Not that I know of.  Then again, I don’t have many friends or a lot of family, so it’s a pretty small pool of potential bloggers.
  8. Do you prefer handmade or shop-bought presents?  I’d probably do more handmade stuff if I had more talent in that department.  There was one year that everyone got scarves for Christmas, but there’s only so many scarves people need, right?  I usually try to get either something that’s useful or something that tastes good.
  9. Besides blogging, do you have any other creative skills?  Writing is really my only creative ability.  I’ve done artistic things before, like dance and playing musical instruments, but I was never inclined to do my own choreography or composition or anything like that.
  10. Would you rather text or talk?  Text, hands down.  I hate talking on the phone, and always have.
  11. If you were asking the questions, what would you like the final question to be? I’m fascinated with animals, so I’m going to pick an animal-themed question.  If you could have one wild animal magically be tame and live with you, what would it be? And I’m going to be very Canadian and choose a moose, although he’d probably find my living room a little too cramped for his liking.  He’d probably want to jump off my balcony, and I’d have an excuse to yell out “there’s a moose on the loose!”

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from DM at Pointless Overthinking:

  1. What is your biggest fear?  Being unemployed and running out of money.  It may seem like catastrophizing, but it would have been my reality a couple of years ago if I wasn’t such a diligent saver.
  2. What would you like to achieve with your writing?  I’m not particularly goal-oriented when it comes to my writing, but I do want to continue to connect with other bloggers and tap into this sense of community.
  3. On a scale from 1 (hell would be better) to 10 (everything is more than perfect), how satisfied are you with your life right now and why do you think so?  Hmm, that’s a very tough question.  Right now I feel like I’m coasting along on momentum rather than feeling much overall satisfaction.  I’m definitely below a 5, but how much below varies depending on how I’m feeling.
  4. What is the first thing you do every morning?  Feed the guinea pigs.  If I try to stay in bed for a while but they hear me rustling around, they’ll start squeaking to remind me to give them their breakfast.
  5. How do you like to spend your weekends?  At both of my jobs I work casual, so there’s really no difference in my world between weekdays and weekends.
  6. What are you grateful for?  Those same 4 little balls of fur that kick up a ruckus if I don’t feed them exactly when their little hearts desire.
  7. What things do you have on your bucket list?  I’m leaving very soon for a trip to Italy, which has always been on my bucket list.  Roman ruins, renaissance art, good food, good wine… what more could you ask for?
  8. What’s the craziest dream you ever had?  This question would require that I remember my dreams, which I rarely do.  Maybe that’s a good thing, maybe it’s a bad thing… I’m inclined to think it’s a good thing.
  9. What’s your core belief?  I think the belief that has stayed the most consistent through my life is the belief that it’s important to always be expanding my mind, by learning more and seeing new things.  That’s a big part of why travelling has always been very important to me.
  10. What is your biggest desire?  The problem is that would require me to feel desire, which I just don’t.  I guess what I want the most falls more into the category of not wanting – I don’t want harmful things to happen to me.  I feel like I’ve met my quota on that for a while.

 

Question from Have You Ever Noticed? blog:

Talk about an incident that impacted your life in a really positive way.

There have been a lot of occasions while I’ve been travelling that people have decided to take the dazed and confused solo white girl under their wing.  In Hanoi, Vietnam, I was visiting a museum and came across the board of directors of the museum (or something along those lines) having lunch.  They decided I should join them, and they were showing me how to eat the food properly and telling me all about their museum.  In India, I had gotten confused and thought I’d missed my train in the middle of the night.  Turned out my train was just pulling out of the station, and they radioed and told it to stop.  One of the staff picked up my backpack and starts running toward the train, with me huffing and puffing along after him, and I made it on the train – a great Bollywood moment.  When my friend and I were travelling in Romania, we got to a town where the guesthouse mentioned in our guidebook simply didn’t exist.  We were trying to ask directions, and a lady took pity on us and invited us to stay in her house.  She spoke maybe 5 words of English but she was thrilled to have us there.  This is why I love travelling; it’s such a good reminder that there really are kind people in the world.

 

A few questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s Game On series:

What is the funniest first name you have ever heard used in the real world?[as in not cartoon or films and so on]  When I was younger, my friend had a crush on a guy named Tree, who had one brother named Ember and another sibling named something tree-related.

Why did 6 cry?  Because 9 was a useless lover.

If you awoke one morning and found your five year old self in your current body, what would be the first thing you do?  Probably gaze at the mirror in confused fascination about having breasts.

If animals could talk which one do you think would be the rudest?  My guinea pig Squeaky.  He can be a grumpy old man.

What is your most favourite funniest film – provide link please.  The Heat with Melissa McCarthy and Sandra Bullock.  It’s one of my main go-to’s to lift me up if I’m feeling shitty.

How many mice would it take to lift an elephant?  Only one if the elephant is hooked up to a crane and the mouse is qualified to operate said crane (the guinea pigs would be willing to help out).

Ok, somehow you have found yourself in front of a panel of doctors in the local insane asylum and you have to convince them that you are not mad, even though you are acting quite bonkers – how would you convince them that you really are ok?  I would recite pharmacology info while doing the hokey pokey and balancing a DSM on my head.

How much did the polar bear weigh?  The square root of the weight of the elephant divided by the combined weight of the mouse and any guinea pigs helping out.

Blimey!! You have just landed the task of making a room filled with straight faces laugh – how are you going to achieve it??  Show an episode of Seinfeld, maybe The Contest.  Are you still master of your domain?

Who is your favourite comedienne?  Probably Melissa McCarthy.  I loved her Sean Spicer impression.  Plus she was great in The Heat, as mentioned above.

Do butterflies remember their life as a caterpillar?  They’re too busy being pretty to worry about caterpillar-hood.

Why is a carrot more orange than an orange?  I think an even better question would be if an orange is called an orange, why isn’t a lemon called a yellow?

Why does grass smell only when it’s been cut?  Insert fart joke here.

If a word is spelt incorrectly in a dictionary – how would you know if you didn’t have any way of checking it?  My question here would be what if you don’t know how to spell a word, how the heck are you supposed to find it in a dictionary?  Say you don’t know phone starts with a ‘ph’ and you’re looking under ‘f’ – you’re truly f’ed!

What was Captain Hooks name before he got the hook?  Let’s just hope he wasn’t born with hook.  Now that would feel pretty damn awful coming out the vagina – kind of like an episiotomy on steroids.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip Quick Fire Round 10:

  • What is the one meal you could eat all day every day for the rest of your life if you had to?  Cheerios.  I’ve been eating them since I was a kid, and will keep eating them til the day I day.
  • If we lived in an all grey world what three colours would you introduce as the first and only colours to our world?  I’m a little blue-crazy, so let’s go with navy blue, sky blue, and teal.
  • Have you ever been starstruck?  Back in the day I was a big ice hockey fan (how very Canadian of me).  I went to a few Vancouver Canucks games and was oh-so-starstruck by the team captain at the time, Trevor Linden.   I had decided that somehow, eventually, I was going to marry him.  It hasn’t happened yet, but you never know.
  • What is the best present you have ever received?  An ex-boyfriend was totally broke but managed to scrounge up the money to buy me a digital camera because I was going on a trip.  I have to add the caveat that this was 10 years ago, back in the day before everyone had smartphones.  Yes, that day did actually exist, and I had a Nokia flip phone with a camera that was absolute crap.
  • What film would best describe your life?  I’m going to say Dirty Dancing, not because it actually describes my life, but because I’ve always wished that it did.
  • What song would best describe your life?  Sticking with the Dirty Dancing unreality theme, I’ll go with (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life.
  • What is the next book you are thinking of reading?  The Mind’s Own Physician by the Dalai Lama is loaded on my eReader, ready to go.
  • If you NEVER had to sleep and could sail through each and every day without getting tired, what would you be doing with all that extra time?  I would sleep anyway.  I love sleep, and bedtime is my favourite time of the day.
  • What question would you ask of a stranger to get to know them better quickly?  I don’t actually like people, so I would most likely pretend said stranger didn’t actually exist.  But if I did have to, I would ask who they fantasized about the first time they masturbated.  Chances are that would send them running in the opposite direction.  Mission accomplished.
  • Worst holiday you have ever had?  There was definitely good stuff about it, but when I went to India in 2015 I had a month of diarrhea while I was there and 2 months more once I got home.  Those 3 months included many, many times more diarrhea than the other 39 years of my life so far.  I could go into detail, but I’ll spare you the disgustingness.
  • You have the choice at dying at 100 or living to 200 but still go through the ageing process what would you select and why?  100? 200?  Dear lord is dying at 50 not on the menu?
  • How will humans evolve in the next 1000 years – as in what do you think we will look like?  I hope we’d look like butterflies.  It would make the world so much prettier.
  • What’s the website you visit most often?  Duh, WordPress!
  • If these were only two choices what would you pick and why: A planet with no fruit or a planet with no vegetables?  Can I pick the planet with neither of the above?  As long as there are cows.  I love me some dairy.
  • In a world that is constantly changing on a daily basis what one thing do you hope will never change?  Guinea pigs.  I hope they stay as furry and silly as they are now.
  • What is your astrological sign and do you think you are close to that personality type?  I’m a Pisces, and even though I don’t believe that kind of thing, it’s actually reasonably accurate.
  • It is said that every one of us has a book waiting to be written, what would your book be?  I don’t know the topic, but I think it would be written in a dead language.  Perhaps Aramaic.
  • What is something you will NEVER do again?  I did an aerial tour of the Nazca Lines in Peru.  I barfed, barfed, and barfed some more, despite significant pre-meditating.  Never, ever again.

Answers please on the transparent side to a droplet of water!

I would need Alice’s looking glass for that complex procedure…

 

ABC Tag from Flowers in the Brain: This looked fun, so I thought I’d join in.

  • Age: 39
  • Books: Over the last couple of years I’ve mostly been reading non-fiction.  I also like classics like Pride and Prejudice and A Tale of Two Cities.
  • Colours: blue, blue, and more blue
  • Dream: happiness
  • Everyday start with: 1) feed the guinea pigs 2) pee 3) tea
  • Flower: I’m a bit clueless about flower names, but I like lilacs and irises because my mom grew them in our back yard when I was a kid.
  • Goals: Find a job that’s more fulfilling (same career, just different workplace)
  • Height: 5’8″ (oddly enough, we’re mostly metric in Canada, but for people’s height and weight we always use Imperial)
  • In love with: guinea pigs!
  • Job: nurse
  • Kids: only of the guinea pig variety
  • Last thing I ate: corn flakes (although unlike Flowers in the Brain, they’re not homemade)
  • Magic power: Being able to fly, especially since flying in airplanes is so unpleasant
  • Number of fears: There are a variety of things that I’m afraid of, but the only one I get totally irrational with is spiders
  • Outfit: pyjamas
  • Passions: guinea pigs!
  • Quotes: everything that comes out of the mouth of the Dalai Lama seems wise and profound.  I bet he could be talking about needing to pee and make it into a deep recognition of our shared humanity.
  • Reasons to smile: yet again, guinea pigs!
  • Season: late summer/early autumn – kinda like right now!
  • Travels: I’ve got a trip to Italy coming up next month
  • Underwater animals: Dolphins.  My first tattoo was of a dolphin.
  • Vacation: I like to travel overseas when I go on vacation and experience something new and different.
  • Worst habit: Like Flowers in the Brain, I’m a skin picker.  It’s less of a psychological thing and more because of my eczema.
  • X men character: I would have to know who the X-men characters are before I could answer this one.
  • Your favourite food:  Cheeseburgers.  No wonder it’s hard to control the psych med weight gain!
  • Zodiac sign: Pisces

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Rory at A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip:

  • What are your thoughts on the new slouchy denim Versace boots worn here by J-Lo?  I could forgive boots that look like falling down jeans if they were worn with leggings, but without pants of any kind they look like like bad 90’s rap style, like Kriss Kross taken to the extreme.
  • What is your personal credo or catchphrase that you use constantly?  Fuck that shit, or some other combination of swear words.
  • Do you prefer the company of people or do you prefer your own company more… or do you prefer to have a healthy balance and if the latter what do you consider healthy? Balance might be healthy, but I’m just rolling with the fact that I can’t stand people.
  • How productive and organised are you …. no l am serious – really?  Productivity varies, but I’m uber-organized.  It’s actually quite helpful in compensating for functional deficits when I’m depressed.
  • What advice would you give someone who was just about to go on their very first date?  Run for the hills!  Don’t do it!
  • When we were young/er what things did your parents tell you that you find yourself repeating or performing now?  One thing that unfortunately I’ll never forget is my mom’s sing-song version of her recipe for French toast.  I wish I could knock that out and use that memory for more useful things, but it’s just not happening.
  • Have we become too automated or digitally reliant upon computerised technology as a society?  Having been a kid in the 80’s, I remember the day when the height of technology was playing Oregon Trail on a dinosaur computer that had a floppy drive that took disks that were actually floppy.  When I was really young our telephone was on a party line.  Banking involved going to the bank and getting your bankbook stamped.  Getting your own music playlist going required a dual cassette deck and whatever tapes you could manage to borrow from your friends.  We’ve come a long way, and I think that is a very, very good thing.
  • With the way that ‘mankind’ a term l use loosely is slowly causing the extinction of animals – how do you think a world of no animals would look in the next 100 years?  Without guinea pigs I would have offed myself already.
  • Do you think you personally spend too much time on the Internet, social media platforms or involved with Smartphones, TV’s or other gadgets and if so, what is your weekly use, roughly in terms of hours?  That depends on whether Jupiter is aligned with Pisces and how diva-ish the guinea pigs are being.  They can be quite the little attention hogs.
  • What mythical or crytpzoological creature do you wish actually had actually or did actually exist and why?  Unicorns, particularly glittery ones.  I would dispatch my unicorn to ram its horn up the rear end of certain well-deserving individuals.
  • What was the most unsettling film you have seen? [provide link]  I’m going to throw it back to my childhood and go with either Stephen King’s It or one of the Child’s Play movies.  It gives me shivers just thinking about them.

 

Questions from Carrie at Bipolar in Order: A Confessional:

  • What are you most proud of about yourself (non-academic or professionally)?  I’m proud of the amount of education I’ve done.  I figure if you’re not learning something then you’re just stagnating.
  • What keeps you going through all of your ups, downs, and diagonals?  My guinea pigs, although they prefer around in circles.
  • Which member of your family, immediate or distant, has influenced and inspired you the most? (alive or not)  My grandma who’s 101 and still going strong.  She doesn’t take anything too seriously and can always find humour in any situation.
  • Which figure in history has influenced and inspired you the most?  That’s a tough one.  I guess I’ll pick Sir John A. MacDonald, the first prime minister of Canada.  Not that he specifically has influenced me that much, and apparently he did some bad shit, but I think being Canadian is a major factor in how I look at the world.
  • What is your spirit animal?  The phoenix.  I have a large one tattooed on my left side, and it’s very important to me.
  • What is your creative/emotional outlet besides blogging?  Journalling.  It was something that had fallen by the wayside, but I really got back into it earlier this year.
  • How have you advocated for mental health (illness) awareness in your family and/or community?  I’ve been pretty open about my illness since I first got sick in 2007, and it was a few years afterwards that I started speaking to broader audiences about it.
  • Do you go to therapy and/or are you in any support groups?  Not currently.
  • Have you had any difficulties regarding conventional work and employment? If so, what have they been and what have you had to do?  I’ve had issues with employers’ reaction to my illness.  It really frustrates me that the mental health care field holds so much stigma towards mental illness.
  • What is one act of self-care you practice on a daily basis?  When I get up in the morning I have quiet time to myself to drink tea (and lots of it).
  • Do you know that I am here for you and you are validated? Validation is the balm for all ailments.  Validation is so important.  I think sometimes people think it’s helpful to try to minimize the problems that you might be experiencing and get kind of cheerleader-ish, but often, what I need to hear is “wow, that really sucks”.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Fiona at Like As The Waves:

  • What is your favourite book?  Well, if we think of favourite as greatest number of times read, I’d say Anne of the Island by Lucy Maud Montgomery and These Happy Golden Years by Laura Ingalls Wilder.  I read them many times as a child, and continue to read them regularly as an adult.
  • Which of your blog posts are you most proud of?  I don’t have a particular favourite.  I’m probably the proudest of the posts in which I’ve been honest and open about difficult topics.
  • What quality do you value most in others?  It’s hard to pick just one, but I think kindness goes a very long way.
  • What is your best joke?  I don’t have one, to be honest.  But I think the tv show Seinfeld has the funniest jokes ever.
  • Who is someone who had a big impact on your life?  My Grandma.  She’s 101 years old, and she’s amazing.  We’ve always been close, and she’s a great example of someone who can stay positive through anything.
  • What’s one aspect of blogging that you dislike or find challenging?  The occasionally phases when I feel inadequate in terms of my numbers or what have you.  It seems to happen to most of us once in a while, and it sucks.
  • If you had to choose one meal to eat for the rest of your life, what would it be? My immediate inclination is to think cheeseburgers, but realistically the food I could eat over and over without ever getting sick of it is Cheerios.  Sometimes simple is best.
  • What is your least favourite movie?  I haven’t actually seen these, but probably movie versions of tv shows I find tremendously obnoxious, like Trailer Park Boys and Beavis & Butthead.
  • What is your favourite scent?  Guinea pig smell.  It’s kind of like baby smell, without the stinky poop.
  • What is one way that you cope with bad days?  Snuggles with my guinea pigs.
  • Where is your favourite place?  My bedroom – I’m such a homebody!

 

Questions from Anja at The Calculating Mind:

  1. Have you ever thought to make your blog anonymous, especially if it is on a ‘stigmatized’ topic such as your own mental illness? Why or why not…? If your blog is not on your own mental health, what do you think of others disclosing their conditions in such a public manner as a blog?  I’m pretty open in my “real life” about my mental illness.  But I keep my blog anonymous-ish because I have no interest in sharing my deepest thoughts and feelings with most people I know in “real life”.  It’s important to me to be able to be totally unfiltered, so my blog will remain anonymous-ish.
  2. How have you learned to deal with those who may [perhaps harshly] criticize your blog, post, article, vlog, or view?  Luckily I haven’t really had to deal with that, but my approach is not to engage.  I see other bloggers who have gotten quite bothered when they tried to defend themselves or stand up against blatant stigma, and I’ve come to the conclusion that people who choose to be rude or willfully ignorant are just not worth the mental energy.
  3. What do you love the most about the blogging community or blogging itself?  I love how supportive and engaging the blogging community is.
  4. What piece of advice would you give to those who are looking into starting their own blog?  Write for you, not for anyone else.
  5. If you could have coffee with any writer, blogger, or advocate, who would it be?  It would be a lot of fun to have coffee with Jenny Lawson, who wrote Furiously Happy.  We’d have a wild and crazy conversation with taxidermy playing a prominent role.
  6. What is currently your favorite song?  I’m liking One More Light by Linkin Park.
  7. What upcoming event or thing are you looking forward to the most?  I’m doing a trip to Italy in the fall.  It’ll be a cool mix of historic sites and fabulous food.
  8. Which movie, tv show, or documentary does an incredible job accurately portraying mental illness/symptoms, diagnosis, or treatment?  I really liked A Beautiful Mind.  It’s very rare to see schizophrenia portrayed in any sort of realistic way.
  9. In your opinion, what is the biggest issue regarding the impact of stigma?  On a personal scale it’s been negative impacts from stigma on the part of my employers.  On a broader scale, I would say stigma within the mental health care system, both on the part of people working in it and people funding it, has a major impact on people’s ability to get help.
  10. Dream vacation: where would it be?  I think it would be really cool to go to Lhasa in Tibet.  Even cooler would be if Tibet became independent and the Dalai Lama could return there.  Now that would be an amazing moment in time to witness.
  11. What [or who] makes you smile no matter how “down” you feel?  Watching Seinfeld, or Trevor Noah comedy specials on Netflix.  I always laugh no matter how many times I’ve re-watched.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Carol Anne at Therapy Bits:

  • who made you smile lately?  I regularly watch the Late Show with Stephen Colbert, and that’s always good for a laugh.  His jokes about the (alleged) Trump “pee-pee tape” always make me smile.
  • what types of videos do you like to watch on youtube?  I don’t watch a lot on Youtube – I get overwhelmed by the huge selection and lack of organization.  I like watching documentaries on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.
  • Do you like quotes?  I love quotes!  There’s some great inspirational ones, but my real favourites are from Seinfeld.  These pretzels are making me thirsty!
  • Spring or summer and why?  It’s pretty rainy here in the early spring, so late spring/early summer is probably my favourite, as it’s sunny and not too hot.
  • What were you hoping for when you started your blog?  I thought writing would be therapeutic, but I had no idea how much of a community I would find.
  • Hot or cold drinks and why?  I like my hot tea in the morning, but otherwise mostly cold drinks because they’re more thirst-quenching.
  • Bath or shower and why?  Bath to relax, shower to get clean.
  • If you had a wish any wish what would it be?  To be a guinea pig.  There’s something very appealing of the simplicity of a life that revolves around sleeping, eating, and pooping.
  • Kids or animals? Who are your favourite?  My guinea pigs are my kids.
  • What are the qualities you like in a friend?  Understanding, non-judgmental
  • What is the worst thing about your depression?  Probably how much it has stolen away from me over the years.

 

Questions from 4M’s Bipolar Mom:

  1. What do you enjoy most about blogging?  Depression makes me isolate, but blogging makes me un-isolate.  Put those together and you have an almost-functional human being.
  2. What do you think about my blog – and how would you add to / change it?  I think it’s fabulous.  And I’m also a fan of the term “chicken” as a term of endearment, although I use it most often to refer to my patients.  I suppose my little crack-addicted sex trade worker chicken that I was so fond of at a previous job isn’t quite the same as a child, but everyone deserves a little love!
  3. What is your favourite chocolate?  (you can restrict this to five, I have a top ten that rotate depending on time of day and mood)  Such a deceptively simple question.  I’m a big fan of the peanut-butter chocolate combination, and I’ve recently discovered the fancy Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups with Reese’s Pieces chunks in them.  When it comes to fancy chocolates, there’s a Canadian company called Purdy’s that does amazing chocolates.  Chocolate in various other forms is good, like chocolate brownies (which absolutely must be under-baked so they’re ooey-gooey).
  4. What is your top tip for coping with anxiety?  I like to be snuggled in at home with tea, some aromatherapy, a cozy blanket either on or beside me, and a guinea pig sitting on my chest
  5. What makes life more bearable for you?  My guinea pig chickens.  They are cute as can be and it always makes me feel better to tell proud mama stories of their adorable behaviour (but I’ll spare you here).  Any time you get excited by talking about a little chicken’s poop you’ve got a good thing going on.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Ida at Around the ward in 80 days:

  1. Has blogging been as you imagined it to be?  It has truly been all that and a bag of chips! (salt and vinegar, please)
  2. What’s your dream collaboration?  Ida mentioned a vibrator company, and I think I’ll have to second that idea
  3. Would you ever do other formats besides writing, such as youtube or podcasts?  I write much more intelligently and coherently than I speak.  When I’m being recorded I turn into a bumbling idiot, so I try to avoid that as much as possible.
  4. Talk us through your process of writing a post.  Sometimes it just flows and 5 minutes later I’m done, and sometimes I’ll work on something in dribs and drabs over the space of a few weeks.  First step in my process is the idea, second step is the title, third step is the image to go with the post, and then I bumble along from there.
  5. Do you get writer’s block?  Yes, although often it’s less of a specific writer’s block and more my brain deciding to take an extended road trip out to stupid-ville.  Sometimes it’s an overnight trip, and other times its a more extended say.
  6. What’s worse, a writer’s block or a cock block? (You can change this one into ‘what’s your favourite colour?’)  I myself seem to be a walking, talking, one-woman cock blocking machine, so I’m pretty used to that, and therefore I’d say writer’s block.
  7. Pitch your blog to me with one sentence.  Mental health, guinea pigs, yaks, and yurts – what more could one ask for?

 

Questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s Friday Funday Challenge: Ok, so I’m not actually doing the challenge, but I did want to join in the fun and answer a few of the rather morbidly themed questions.

  • If you were facing the death penalty what would be your last meal choice??  A big ole bucket of chicken from KFC.
  • Have you ever had your tarot read?  By a friend who was quirky, to say it politely (although leaning more towards the nutty end of the spectrum). I would have more faith in a reading from my guinea pigs.
  • Would you sleep inside a coffin underground for a night?  No, no, a million times no.  The most claustrophobic space I’ve ever been in was the Cu Chi tunnels used by the Viet Cong in the Vietnam war.  The panic was not a pleasant experience, to say the least.
  • What is your best detective series?  Nancy Drew, hands down.
  • Are you afraid of clowns?  Only the clown from Stephen King’s It.  That thing scared the bejeezus out of me.
  • Of all the ways a person could commit murder which do you think is the worst? Why?  Well, they wouldn’t have called it murder, but the old British punishment of drawing and quartering gives me the heebie-jeebies.
  • If you were a detective investigating a murder what would your first steps be at the scene of a brutal death?  I’d call Starsky and Hutch, and when they came in to check out the scene I’d go out and “borrow” their car for a joyride.
  • Hanging, Injection, guilotine or firing squad what would you prefer?  Injection all the way.
  • What time of the day is the best time to commit a murder?  Between 3 and 4 am.  The night owls have gone to bed, and the early birds like me are sitting at home drinking tea.
  • Do you look guilty?  Not necessarily, but the guinea pigs do.
  • Uh oh, you have witnessed a murder, and you think the killer may have seen you but you are not sure, what would you do?  I would move to Kyrgyzstan and live in a yurt in the mountains, with a herd of yaks as a protection detail.
  • You are a suspect in a murder enquiry that you ‘know about’, what is your alibi to throw them off your scent?  I don’t operate well under pressure, so I’d probably totally lose it and give a false confession.
  • Whilst gardening the body of a neigbour is discovered in your back yard that everyone knows you had a feud with, what are you going to do to prove your innocence or?  Who says I’m innocent?

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s Quick Fire Round #9:

  • Post it notes or notebook?  Both have their roles, but I’m not especially reliant on either.
  • Do you have a calendar at home on the wall and if so, do you actually use it for information or is just there for decoration? Or are you more of a calendar app person?  Not currently, but in previous years I’ve had one on the wall for decoration.  My Google calendar is as essential to my life as oxygen.
  • Do you sleep with the bedroom door open or shut?  I live alone, so open to get more air flow.  Something I find very odd about my parents is that they keep the bedroom door open regardless of who else may be in the house.
  • Do you smile a lot, a little, hardly ever or WTF is a smile?  When I’m well I smile a lot.  When my depression is really bad sometimes I’ll look in the mirror and try to force myself to smile, and I just can’t do it.
  • Did you have freckles as a kid or do you still have them now?  No freckles.  I have assorted small moles scattered around, including a rogue larger one on my face that likes to sprout hair, which I find rather obnoxious.
  • Are you photogenic?  Absolutely not. As soon as I see a camera pointed at me I start making all kinds of involuntary weird faces.  Is there a photographic version of tardive dyskinesia?
  • Is it just me that counts trees or do you count something when out in the car??
  • Are you a pen or pencil chewer?  No.  I have vague recollections of sometimes doing this when I was young, but not anymore.
  • What’s your tune of the week?  Don’t have one.  All my music is loaded on my iPhone, and I rotate through various playlists.
  • Best holiday you have ever been on?  Hard to say, because I’ve travelled to some pretty cool places.  I had a great time on my first big international trip to Greece and Turkey when I was 22.
  • Do ever wear bright, bright, bright pink?  Not since the 80’s.  I wore enough then to last a lifetime.
  • What’s your favourite food dip?  My mind jumped to fried chicken with this one, so I’m going to say honey mustard.  But I’m finicky about my honey mustard.  The less it tastes like actual honey or mustard, the better.  KFC does a good honey mustard sauce that seems like it would have a best before date of 200 years from now.
  • Would you ever pose nude for a charity calendar?  Hell no.  I’m a firm believer that 97% of the population look better with clothes on, and I fall into that group.
  • We live in the age of email and digital electronics, when was the last time you actually wrote a letter with something other than a keyboard?
  • How many first dates have you ever been on?  Very few.  In the past I’ve either leapt into a relationship or leapt into bed.  Not so much of that whole dating thing.
  • What is your Chinese astrological sign?  I didn’t actually know this, but as I was preparing to Google it I thought goat would be my top choice.  And guess what, I am a goat!  Sometimes you do get what you ask for in life 🙂
  • Do you have any monthly/weekly magazine subscriptions?  I get a weekly dose of trash in the form of US Weekly.  I’m hooked up with a deeply discounted subscription rate, and it’s fun to see what the fancy people are wearing.
  • It annoys the hell out of Suze who says it’s distracting – but do you dance in the car or are you more of a singer?  I’m more of a singer, but will occasionally bust out the car dancing moves.

Answers please on underside of a elephants trunk!

Baby Elephant, Elephants, Bath, Sun Bath, River Bath

 

More from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip:

  • Give a brief story of how your blog started.  Well, I’ll have to dig deep to try and drum up that memory from less than a year ago…  I had a lot of time on my hands.  I think I was doing some reading on starting a clinical private practice, and came across something that mentioned having a website with a blog.  I got interested and ran with that blog tangent, and here I am.  I have no plans to actually start a private practice anytime soon, but Mental Health @ Home was the name I had cooked up in my head for that, so that’s where the blog name came from.
  • Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
    • Make friends!  The WordPress community is awesome, and you will wonder why the hell the people you’re surrounded by in real life aren’t as cool as the WP bunch.
    • Find your blogging groove.  Figure out what blogging frequency feels right for you, whether you prefer impromptu or scheduled posts, whether you want to have recurring themes, etc.  Anything goes, so it’s just a matter of figuring out what works for you, and then you can snuggle in and get cozy.
    • Bonus tip: Spam will happen, and instead of letting it bug you, try to find the ridiculousness in it.  Much of it is mundane, but some if it is pretty out there.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credits:

qimono on Pixabay

nuzree on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Rory at A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip:

  • If I could spin round on my chair fast enough how long will I need to spin round to move forward in time to next Friday?  Well, I was just watching a documentary about Einstein on Netflix, so I could share my newfound wealth of knowledge about the nature of space-time, but that wealth of knowledge that I could pretend to have is smaller than a pinkie toe, which brings us to the next question…
  • Why do we only have five toes?  Ok seriously, toes are ugly enough as it is without adding extra ones to join in the ugly party.
  • At a movie theater which arm rest is yours?  Preferably both.  But I like to get an aisle seat to ensure that I have at least one.  Arm-related manspreading is just as prevalent and obnoxious as leg-related manspreading.
  • What is the purpose to the mosquito, the cockroach, the snail and the slug?  To give people the heebie-jeebies.  Except for snails.  They fascinate me.  I think if my house always lived on my back it would permanently be bedtime, and there’s something very appealing to that.
  • What’s the difference between a drum, an egg and sex?  Having recently watched Fifty Shades Freed I could pretend to give you a kinky explanation of how well they all go together, but since I don’t know what I’m talking about I’ll keep it vanilla and move on to the next question.
  • Why oh why is it so difficult to find the right fitted bra? [Asking for a friend]  First off, I don’t believe you Rory.  Secondly, breasts are like fingerprints, all unique. Anyone who manages to address this issue is deserving of a Nobel prize.  The easiest fit to find is a compression sports bra that keeps those babies sucked and tucked even if you’re falling out of your seat trying to escape the manspreading ape from question 3.
  • If you had only one match and entered a dark room containing an oil lamp, some kindling wood, and a newspaper, which would you light first?  I feel like I need more information, including what else is in the room, who else is in the room (and their level of attractiveness), and why on earth I entered the room in the first place.
  • Dragons, did they exist or not? [Interpret how you will]  I wonder if my vagina might have been a fire-breathing dragon in a previous life [Interpret how you will].
  • If you only had one year left to live, what would you do with those 12 months? Go to France and eat so much buttery and cheesy goodness that I would have a heart attack before the 12 months are up.
  • Okay, your best friend has really bad body odour and bad breath at the same time do you tell them and risk offending/upsetting them or not?  My question here is how did you become best friends with this person in the first place?  If someone can’t be bothered with industrial strength deodorant as needed, how can you rely upon them to perform their friend-ly duties?
  • Ok, you are given the chance to flip the card to win 1000 [your currency] or keep the 500 [your currency] that you already have. Do you take the risk and flip the card?  The thought of losing money for a random card flip is just as icky as the above-mentioned cockroach.  Needless to say I’m the person who, on the once in a blue moon occasion I’m at a casino, is playing the 1¢ slot machines and cringing with every dollar I lose.

 

Questions from The Barefoot Aya from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s Friday Funday: I’m not following the rules, but hey, you gotta be a rebel sometimes.

  • If you were a vegetable, which would you be, but more importantly why?  I’m actually going to rebel and be a fruit instead, specifically a durian.  They stink to high heaven and there’s something awfully appealing about repulsing everyone who comes near me.
  • Milk, water or juice?  I drink copious amounts of water every day and feel like I would shrivel up like a raisin without it.  I probably wouldn’t taste as good, though.
  • Ok, for some bizarre reason, you have awoken to a fresh day, go to the fridge, open it and there is a giraffe inside stuck, how are you going to get it out? [Asking for a friend]  I would crawl on in and snuggle up with the giraffe, cause somewhere behind one of those body parts has got to be a magic portal to the Serengeti.
  • Oh grief, emails are the bane of our lives right? We have an email for everything, you open up your inbox and you find that you have a staggering 2000 sitting in there that require answering, BUT you can only answer 200 – how do you choose the ones to answer?  That would never happen, because I’ve got my system.  I could tell you what the system is, but then I’d probably have to kill you.  Then of course there’s the fact that I don’t like people so there are a limited number of people that actually email me.
  • You have a party of 28 people turning up on your doorstep and the caterers have let you down, you have 2 hours to make some kind of meal and you only have a potatoes,  bananas, breadrolls and taco sauce – what you are going to make?  What I’m going to do is lock the door and turn off the lights because I would rather spend the evening with the giraffe in the fridge than have 28 people show up at my home.
  • If you could eliminate one invention from the history of the world and it could never be reinvented, what would it be?  Guns.
  • You were given the opportunity to fly anywhere in the entire world with the ability to fly back from that exact same spot. You can’t fly to or from any other place and you can only do it once. Where would you go and why?  I think I’d fly to the south of France and just never come back.
  • How can you drop an egg from a height without it breaking ?  If you eat it and it’s in your stomach.  You have to worry about other thinks breaking, but that’s beside the point.
  • If tattoos were easily and cheaply removable whenever you wanted, how many would you get, what would you get, and where?  I’ve been thinking about getting a Celtic oak tree design on my leg.  I’ve got 3 tattoos already.
  • Oh my goodness what a conundrum! You have found yourself in a position where upon you are driving late at night and the heavens have opened – you spot three people in the rain and want to help, but only have space for one passenger …

    • An old lady who looks as if she is about to die.
    • An old friend who once saved your life.
    • The perfect partner you have been dreaming about.
    • … Who do you help?  Well, I’d leave the old lady because if she dies anyway I don’t want to be stuck dealing with the body.  The dream perfect partner is most likely gay/psychopathic/smells like a durian, so I’ll go with option B.
  • What is the length of one piece of cooked spaghetti??  That depends how far Lady and the Tramp have gotten in their spaghetti a deux.
  • Where are your keys to your house right now?  They always live in my purse.  Very few of my clothes have pockets, so the purse always comes with me.  I feel like there must be some sort of conspiracy going on between the female pocketless clothes people and the handbag people.
  • Bob’s father has 4 children. John, Adam, and Peter are three of them. Who’s the fourth??  Nancy Drew.  Obviously.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Michele at The Hippy Chick

  1. Would you consider your family functional or dysfunctional?  My family is for the most part pretty functional.  For the last couple years I haven’t functioned well as part of that family, but that’s more how the illness has affected me rather than things that they’ve done wrong.
  2. What are your core values?  Open-mindedness, curiosity, kindness, and empathy.
  3. Would you consider yourself addicted to anything?  No, luckily my brain doesn’t seem to be susceptible that way.  I’ve never even had mild withdrawal coming off meds or going without caffeine.
  4. Most embarrassing moment? Probably ding the walk of shame in Turkey.  Yes, Turkey the country.
  5. Do pigs, indeed, fly?  The closest I’ve seen is one of my guinea pigs who likes being bounced up in the air.  If I could rig up some sort of strap-on wing system the bouncy guinea pig might like it but the rest are very happily earth-bound.

 

Questions from Tropical Storm Alaska:

  • What cartoon character would you like to have as a best friend?  She-Ra princess of power!
  • What is your preferred journal style? (ex: bullet, planner, lists, etc.)  Bullet journal because it includes a little bit of everything.  I’m not sure if what I’ve got going even really qualifies as a bullet journal, but thinking outside the box, right?
  • What does your dream home look like? Where is it located?  I think where I live right now is pretty dreamy.  I’m on the west coast of Canada, which is great, and I’ve been living in my condo for 13 years so it’s very comfortable and familiar.
  • Where is your “safe place”?  My dreamy home, specifically in my bedroom.
  • What is your favorite way to express yourself?  Writing!
  • What was your favorite thing to do as a child?  Play with My Little Ponies.
  • Did you have an imaginary friend?  I suppose the My Little Ponies would probably count.  I had a whole little Pony world cooked up in my head.  In fact, maybe what I need now as a substitute for human interaction is to revive Pony world.  Hmm….

 

Questions from Pretty Words for Ugly Thoughts:

  1. What is your spirit animal?  I think I would say the dolphin.  They’re intelligent and they have so much freedom.  My first tattoo was of a dolphin.  And as a dolphin you can pee in the water because that’s just expected of you, which is pretty darn cool.
  2. If you had to choose, would keep your vision and go deaf, or keep your hearing and go blind?  I don’t really like people all that much so I could live with not hearing them.  Vision is something I’d like to hang on to, especially since it makes it easier to get around independently.
  3. What’s your favorite book and why?  Probably Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.  I’ve read it a million times (ok, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration) and it’s still just as good each time.  Elizabeth Bennet is so feisty, and I like that in a main character.
  4. What’s your favorite flower and why?  I’m kind of partial to African violets.  Someone gave my parents an African violet when i was born and it’s still living 39 years later, which I think is pretty cool.
  5. What’s the most interesting/creative dream you’ve ever had?  I seldom remember my dreams for very long, so I’m not sure.  But hopefully it involved Brad Pitt from the Legends of the Fall days.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

All rise… being a P4J judge

I am a P4J judge badge

I got to be a judge in Revenge of Eve’s Photos for Journals (P4J) competition.

 

The winner has been announced for Revenge of Eve’s Photos 4 Journals (P4J) competition!  You can find out who on the Revenge of Eve P4J winner post.

It was pretty darn exciting to be asked to be a judge in the Photos 4 Journals (P4J) competition.  Every week, I got an email from the lovely Candace at Revenge of Eve with your amazing submissions for the week.  Each week I thought damn, how on earth am I going to narrow down my picks?  The judging criteria, i.e. the photo that evoked strong emotion, was very subjective, and how do I even begin to trust my subjective?  I’m glad I didn’t know who had submitted each photo, because who needs complications with an already difficult decision?

Candace has said that we judges will be getting some stationary goodies from her Not Your Average Chick passion project.  How often does a judge get to be a winner at the same time? Super cool!  Photos to come when I get that special something in the mail…

G2K: Get 2 Know

Revenge of Eve G2K - get to Know

It’s Get 2 Know (G2K) time at Revenge of Eve.  Here are my answers to this week’s questions; I’m in the middle of languishing in unhealthy coping strategies, and the answers reflect that.

  1. If you could change one thing in your life, what would you change?  I would live in a yurt, with a pet yak for a cuddle bunny.
  2. Who would benefit from such change?  Mostly me and the yurt, but the sunshine of our love would spread over the whole yurt-ing community.
  3. Are there steps you can take to make this change happen?  1) Buy plane ticket to Kyrgyzstan.  2)  Purchase yurt.  Somehow I’m guessing this isn’t available on a realtor’s website.  3) Adopt a yak.  I’m not sure if I can just track down a wild one and win it over with my fabulous personality; that will require some research.
  4. How does this impact your life? (The thing you want to change)  In every way, I would think.
  5. How would your life be different from what it is today if this change occurred?  No more work.  No more stress.  No more nights all alone.  Just me and the yak, making sweet non-sexual love.

G2K

is a series of questions giving readers insight into the personal lives of their favorite bloggers.


Participation is easy!

Create a pingback to this post

Answer the following questions honestly

Title your post G2K

Use the hashtag #g2k

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip‘s quick fire round 7:

  • Are eyebrows considered facial hair or just surplus eye hair?  They’re ear hair that’s gone for a walk.
  • If a kid refuses to sleep during nap time, are they guilty of resisting a rest?  Groan…  They’re a pain in the ass is what they are.
  • She sells sea shells by the sea shore, has anyone asked why yet?  Everyone realizes she’s dumb for thinking people will pay for shit they can just pick up for free.
  • If glassblowers inhale do they get a pane in the stomach?  Groan again…  No, they get a snow globe the have to squeeze out their butt.
  • Why does the Easter bunny carry eggs? Rabbits don’t lay eggs.  What kind of rabbits are you looking at?
  • What disease did cured ham actually have?  Genital warts.  They were transmitted from a warthog.  (yup, groan again!)
  • Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?  They don’t actually believe you about the stars, but it’s too much bother to try to prove to you that you’re a doofus.
  • Why do people keep running over a thread a dozen times with their vacuum cleaner, then reach down, pick it up, examine it, then put it down to give the vacuum one more chance?  Well at least now I know I’m not the only one!
  • If you met a vampire, would you let it bite you for eternal life or would you shove a stake in its heart?  Depends if it was Jacob or Edward.
  • Are you more of a hunter or a gatherer?  If I lived in a hunter-gatherer society I would quickly starve unless I could find someone to bribe with sexual favours.
  • Have you ever tried to contact a spirit with an Ouija Board?  No but I have cheated while playing with a Ouija board.
  • If you were a box of cereal, what would you be and why?  All Bran because then I’d always be regular.  But it’s gotta be the All Bran Buds – regular All Bran is just yucky.
  • Have you ever seen a ghost, a spaceship, or anything else you couldn’t rationally explain?  I’ve seen people doing stupid things… does that count?
  • Would you rather fight 1 elephant sized duck or a 100 duck sized elephants?  Ducks can be mean buggers if you get them riled up, so I’d go with the elephants.
  • If l gave you a 1000 dollars, pounds or a currency of your choice how would you double it in 24 hours?  I only need 5 minutes – I’ll go to the bank, withdraw $1000, and boom, I’ve got myself $2000.
  • Ok, you have woken up groggy eyed and worse for wear and find a giraffe in your kitchen, what are you going to do?  I would give it a snuggle and ask it to take me on a ride around the neighbourhood to show off.

 

Answers please on the flipside of the flip side of the reverse side of a doubled sided coin …  You can only see that side if you look through a one-way two-way mirror.

 

Questions from A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip quick fire round 8:

  • What’s your philosophy in life?  Guinea pigs make everything better.
  • Do you consider yourself an introvert or an extrovert?  Introvert all the way baby.
  • What was the best phase in your life?  While I was doing my first university degree.  I had so much fun during those years.
  • When younger, you had a dream job, what was it?  I don’t remember what I wanted to be when I was very young, but I know that when high school rolled around I wanted to be a cardiologist.  Why, I really don’t know.
  • Did you get close you your dream job of young, now that you are grown up?  Right now I’m in my current dream career.
  • What’s more important to you – looks, brains or humour?  That’s a complicated question.  What are we talking about?  A friend?  A life partner?  I value intelligence, I enjoy a quirky sense of humour, and if we’re talking romantic partner physical attraction is a must (although what is attractive to me does not necessarily correspond with what is generally considered good looks).
  • What’s the best age for marriage?  Whatever age at which someone happens to be mature and finds the right person.
  • If you have children in your life [be they yours or family/friends] what advice do you give them if any about when they are older?  Use condoms.
  • Do you ever stay friendly with exes?  Yes, although as a general rule I’d say it probably doesn’t work that well.
  • What’s an ideal weekend for you?  Hanging out at home with the guinea pigs.
  • What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done and would you do it again?  I had a one-night(ish) stand with an Aussie I met in Turkey when I was in my early 20’s.  It was irresponsible and fun, but the only thing I would change is him giving me mononucleosis (yup, the “kissing disease”).
  • Ok, so you are nearing the end of your days – and you offered to live your life once more but are allowed three changes – would you accept those changes or live your life the same way again?  Is none of the above an option?  Once is enough!
  • If you chose those three changes what would they be?  One yurt, one yak, and one me, all combined into one happy little love nest.
  • When you are enjoying some ‘alone time’, what do you think of?  Guinea pigs.  But somehow the ‘alone time’ in quotes seems suggestive of autoerotic activity.
  • What are your top 5 movies to date?  Dirty Dancing, Top Gun, Girls Just Want to Have Fun, Sixteen Candles, and Can’t Buy Me Love.  Gotta love the 80’s.
  • Fess up, we all like some routine and order to our lives, what can you NOT go a day without doing?  Multiple cups of tea in the morning.  With milk, no sugar.
  • What’s the most exciting thing to have happened this year?  I’m more inclined to ask has anything exciting happened this year?
  • Did you ever play Battleship the game as a kid or for that matter maybe even now?  I’m fairly certain I played it back in the day; that may just be a fabricated memory, but it was definitely popular back when I was a kid.

 

Answers please on the third skin of a banana please using pixie dust and egg!  That sounds a little too R-rated for me!

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

3.2.1 Quote me!

Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess tagged for for A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip’s 3.2.1 Quote me game, on the topic of greetings.

 

“Don’t tell your friends about your indigestion. ‘How are you’ is a greeting, not a question.” – Arthur Guiterman

Oh, and they don’t want to know about your mental illness either…  Perhaps we just need to permanently remove the question mark from “how are you?”

 

“A hat should be taken off when you greet a lady and left off for the rest of your life. Nothing looks more stupid than a hat.” – P.J. O’Rourke

I have a feeling this was what he may have had in mind:

beatrice

 

Image credit: The Daily Mail

3.2.1 Quote me

old-fashioned key sitting atop stones

Rory at A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip tagged me for his game 3.2.1 Quote me.  The topic this time around is balance.  Both of these quotes seem quite relevant to my life.

 

“Perhaps there could be no joy on this planet without an equal weight of pain to balance it out on some unknown scale.” – Stephenie Meyer

 

“Balance is not better time management, but better boundary management. Balance means making choices and enjoying those choices.” – Betsy Jacobson

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

 

Questions from Rory at A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip:

  1. What was the weirdest conversation you have overheard?  Hmm, a specific example isn’t coming to mind, but I’ve had a lot of very psychotic patients who’ve had some pretty bizarre conversations with their voices.
  2. If you could be any age [not your current] for a full 7 days, what age would it be and for goodness sake why?  I think 4 is a good age.  Old enough to be aware, but young enough that life is simple and you can just watch Mr. Dressup, Care Bears, and She-Ra Princess of Power all day.
  3. Do you believe in the paranormal, if so why and if not why, and if sitting on the fence – yep you guessed it … why?  Well, I don’t really believe in normal, so pretty much any altered version of normal is A-ok.
  4. If you had a brainwashing machine who would you use it on specifically and why?  Myself to make me believe I’m She-Ra!
  5. What is the strangest, oddest, wierdest or just down right stupidest thing you have ever eaten?  I’m not sure if this is the strangest thing, but a strange eating experience was eating snail soup for breakfast squatting on a sidewalk in Hanoi, Vietnam.
  6. What is your most favourite of all time joke?  I’ve just wasted a substantial portion of my life browsing around on Google to come up with an answer to this, and I think it’s time to call this one a fail and move on.
  7. What food would be the best to make a house out of – discuss and explain your logic?  Overcooked turkey legs – do you realize how tough those babies are?  That house could withstand anything.
  8. Which of my 12 nominees is willing to take part in the Mystery Challenge question of this nomination and which of the 12 is willing to answer the Mystery Challenge Question?  My guinea pig Casper is always up for some play.  She’ll chase you around in circles smelling your bum until you give her the answer.
  9. If you could have a choice of window types and styles in front of your toilet, what would you pick? [You know, where you could sit and watch sort of thing]  Well, not too long ago Rory wanted answers to questions on the back of a 2-way mirror, and I was puzzled by a 2-way and a 1-way mirror being the same thing… Anyway, so I’d pick one of those babies, as long as it was a 2-way mirror/window in name only and really functioned as a 1-way.  Is that wordy enough for you?
  10. You have just bumped into an alien from the planet Jupiter and you say what?  It would depend on the alien’s level of attractiveness, but perhaps something along the lines of “hey baby, you’re outta this world” (accompanied by a little lean forward to show off some cleavage).  Hey, desperate times call for desperate measures…
  11. Of all your behaviours/traits – which one has landed you into the most hot water or trouble?  Not being able to keep my mouth shut when I think something is being done in a way that is unfair/wrong/illogical/etc.

 

Questions from Life is too short just lick the spoon:

  1. If you could sell years from your life with ten thousand dollars each, you many years would you sell and why?  I would sell the last 15 or so years, and then I’d be in my early 20’s with some money in the bank, which I think would work out very nicely.
  2. If you have all the money from the world, how would a perfect day look for you?  Sitting on the terrace at a chateau in Provence eating very expensive cheese and sipping very expensive wine
  3. What is your biggest flaw?  I could dwell on this for the same epic amount of time spent on question #6 from Rory, but instead I’ll throw in the towel and move on tout de suite (or toot-sweet for the non-French-spelling-inclined).
  4. What is your happiest memory?  Something simple from childhood – maybe doing cartwheels back in the day when cartwheels were easy rather than requiring the assistance of a crane.
  5. If you could go back in time and change one thing about your past, what would you change and why?  I plead the fifth.
  6. If you would try to describe yourself with only a sentence, what would that be?  Geeky crazy guinea pig lady.
  7. How many friends do you think you have and why do you consider those people to be friends?  I only have one in-person friend these days, which is an improvement from zero so probably worth hanging onto.
  8. What is the most unique thing about you?  I’ll have to go with the same as #6, geeky crazy guinea pig lady.
  9. In your opinion, which being on this Earth is the most interesting and why?  The yak.  Because it will keep me company on long winter nights in the yurt in Kyrgyzstan.
  10. Imagine you have the power to create anything, what is the first thing you would create and why?  Aerosolized empathy spray-bombed all over the world.  The second would be aerosolized intelligence.
  11. Imagine you could erase anything in this world, what would you erase and why?  Ignorance, because I think it’s at the root of a lot of the world’s problems.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay

20(ish) Questions

pile of question marks

I’ve decided to take a bit of a break from blog awards, but when I’m nominated for awards I’ll answer the questions posed to me in this 20(ish) questions format, along with assorted other question tags and the like.  Feel free to join in the fun with your own answers to any or all of the questions 🙂

Questions from Have You Ever Noticed?

  1. What is one dish you like to cook?  In the summer I like to bbq burgers, and in cool weather I like things that hang out in the oven for a while making yummy smells, like chili.
  2.  How would you describe your favorite pair of shoes?  I’m a big fan of ballet flats.  Comfort is a good thing.
  3. What is the best thing that you did last week?  Cuddle with the guinea pigs.
  4. If you could have lunch with one author (living or dead) who would it be and why?  Either Lucy Maud Montgomery or Laura Ingalls Wilder, because both played a significant role in my childhood.
  5.  What kind of snack do your like to add to your ice cream?  Reese’s peanut butter cups, preferable in the form of a Reese’s Blizzard from Dairy Queen.
  6.  If you could return to any decade, and visit a movie set, which would you like to see and why?  Oh Dirty Dancing, definitely, and I’d want to join in and do a little bumpin’ and grindin’.  Preferably with Patrick Swayze, but beggars can’t be choosers, right?
  7. What is a song that makes you smile?  I Like Big Butts, because really, who doesn’t?
  8. What advice would you give to your younger self?  Embrace new things.
  9. What is one food you just can’t eat?  I think olives are gross and smell like manure.
  10. If you can earn a gold medal in any sport, what would it be and why?  Is there a guinea pig version of equestrian sports?
  11. What is something you wish you could add to your blog and why?  Videos of my guinea pigs being their cute little selves, but I’m too cheap to pay for the monthly WordPress plan to post videos.  Yeah, I could put them on Youtube and embed the Youtube videos on my blog, but besides being cheap I’m also lazy.

 

Questions from Jenn at Reclaiming My Sanity:

  • How did you start your blog?  I was quite depressed, and I was bored because I wasn’t working and wasn’t socializing.  It started off as mostly something to do with my time but quickly grew into something that was really important to me.
  • What advice would you give to new bloggers? Take advantage of the amazing mental health blogging community and interact with other bloggers.

 

Questions from Ida at Around the Ward in 80 Days:

  1. What has blogging brought into your life?  The biggest thing is that it’s brought human contact.  I just haven’t been able to maintain my in-person friendships, so having this online community has been really valuable.
  2. Is there something you’d like to change about your blog?  I guess this is less about the blog and more about WordPress, but I’d get rid of the stats, because they can get distracting in a not-so-good way sometimes.
  3. If you write about mental health, how do you feel about sharing such an intimate part of yourself?  It’s interesting, on my blog is where I’m most comfortable sharing that part of myself.  I don’t trust people in my “real life” enough to share this much.
  4. What would be your dream collaboration?  This would be more antagonism than collaboration, but I would like to interview L. Ron Hubbard about his anti-psychiatry views.
  5. One thing you’d do when if you’d rule the world?  Throw all the mean and nasty people on an island to torment each other and leave the rest of us alone.

 

Come on, you know you want to answer a few – that’s what the comments section is for!

 

Image credit: qimono on Pixabay