Friday 31 May 2013

Dragon And On In Hope And Friendship.

Okay, what the heck, I've received another award.  And, what the howl, the award has a bunch of wolves on it.  Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar looked at the photo and started howling.  

"Semper Fidelis" comes from Latin and means, "always faithful" or, "always loyal".  The motto is used by the United States Marine Corps and also the Mexican Navy.  Incidentally, the motto is on the Coat of Arms of the city of Exeter, Devon, England, which can be observed in the right photo.

Now then, back to the award.  Al Diaz, over at, Father Dragon Writes, very thoughtfully bestowed the "Semper Fidelis award" upon me.  In the spirit of the meaning of the award, I do try to maintain an always faithful, always loyal demeanour.  I know I've been blessed getting to know Al and I know you may well have been blessed visiting such an open, honest, thoughtful and clever blog.  Al, I'm most appreciative of receiving the award.  Thank you, my friend.

Oh no, here are the rules :

1 :  Add the Semper Fidelis Award logo somewhere on your blog.  
2:  Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog.  
3 :  Nominate five bloggers whose loyalty, friendship you value and you consider being part of your "pack of wolves".   
4 :  Post something special for each one of your nominees and dedicate it to them.  Such as a quote, saying, poem, picture.  Anything you think would pertain to that person.
5 :  Let the nominees know that you've nominated them.  

Okay, those were the rules.  I hate rules.  Now I have to pick five people and hope I don't upset anybody I might have overlooked.   Such a dilemma and please forgive me.  Pretty please.  Here goes......

Ah yes, the ever smiling, Tammy Theriault.  I've had the great privilege of much good natured interaction with Tammy, via an interview and quirky comments.  And beyond the joking around, lies a sincere, kind lady who is the epitome of awesomeness.  If you have never visited Tammy's site, why not?  You can find the happy, smiley Tammy, here, Tammy Theriault

Tammy, I dedicate the award to you and much success with your recently finished book, "Living RunAway".
Here is my dear friend, Kim Thomas.   Kim is a remarkable lady and has a passion to see vulnerable creatures treated in a humane, caring way.  On her site, which is more like her beloved dog, CindyLu's site, you can experience the concern and caring demonstrated by Kim.  Her site can be found here, CindyLu's Muse.   Kim, I treasure your friendship and I'm wishing that your life continues to move on in a more positive way.  I dedicate this award to you.
My kind friend, Sue, over at her site in Canberra, has meant a huge amount to me with her supportive interaction.  When I stayed online all of Christmas Day to be there for others who might have been lonely, or just wanted a chat, Sue checked in on me to see how I was.  I haven't forgotten how much that meant to me.  Above is a photo of her two playful cats, "Jazz and Jewel".  You can discover her marvellous site with superb photos, here, Elephant's Child   Sue, my kind friend, I dedicate this award to you.

One of the most supportive and nicest ladies I have the pleasure of interacting with is Delores.  Delores graces me with a comment on a regular basis  She leaves some of the nicest comments I receive.  Delores even had a virtual blog party for me to celebrate my fifth blogging anniversary, what she noted in an after post was this, Speak Up.  To discover Delores' blog as it is now, please go here, thefeatherednest.  Delores, I value your friendship and I dedicate this award to you.  

How could I possibly forget Tina Downey?  Tina and I have had plenty of good natured banter.  While I satirised the alphabet challenge so near and dear to her heart, she took it all in her stride.  Tina shares with me the powerful gift of empathy as we both try to reduce the unfair stigma that still surrounds mental health issues.  Much respect and admiration to you, dear friend.  Tina can be discovered here,  Life is Good.  Tina, I dedicate this award to you.

That's five folks, right?  Yes, I really hate this dilemma.  Who to pick and not hurt anyone's feelings.  And yes, they are all ladies.  What can I say.  Only this, those who have been included in my list must not feel obliged to acknowledge the award.  It's entirely up to you, ladies.  Thank you all for your friendship and it's party time at my place!
Ha! Ha! And Ha!   When our delightful Mexican friend, Al Diaz, posted something special about me, yes me, Al not only said some very kind things about me, yes me, but there was also a matching photo to evidently represent all of Al's nominees.  Much to my surprise, the above photo supposedly relates to me.

Am I now going to go on a rant?  Of course not.  This means I wont go on a rant about blogfests, or bloghops, or blog parties, or reflection posts about reflection posts about the amazing alphabet challenge. This also means that I will most definitely not rant about the fact that whenever a bloghop or whatever is on, virtually my entire blog list is on that bloghop theme.  How much of the same stuff repeated, over and over and over again, can my frazzled brain take..  The good thing about those themed posts is I can copy and paste my comment to each person involved in the blogfest, or bloghop, or blog party, or book tour, or whatever..."Argggggggghhhhh!  I feel better now!"

Finally, yes finally, thanks again, Al Diaz at, Father Dragon Writesfor your kind gesture.  Like you've been here for me, I shall continue to be there for you.  Despite some of the silly stuff I write, I want you to know that my true ideal is to share the gift of empathy and understanding.  That's powerful.

Before this posting starts to ahem, dragon, it will suddenly end!  

Tuesday 28 May 2013

It's Happy Tag Time!

Yippee, I've been tagged!  Now the tagged I'm referring to has nothing to do my with blogging parole tag. The tag that means I can't write beyond my blogging curfew which starts now and ends later.  So, please don't inform the blogger police.

Three amazingly nice people have laid a happy tag on my shy and humble self.  It's the, "Five Things That Make Me Happy", tag.  You might have figured out that I have to list five things that make me happy.  The three amazingly nice people that bestowed this upon me are Jeff, over at, Stands of Pattern, Yolanda, over at, DEFENDING THE PEN and the ever smiling Tammy, over at, Tammy Theriault . Thank you, you three fabulous folks, very much and now I shall list five things that make me happy.
1 : My son, Tristan, made this snowman on March 29.  This made me happy and I was happy to add the scarf and the Vancouver Canucks toque, eh.                                                                     
2 : Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar, has her very own special award that she sends out every once in awhile. No rules, no links required back to this site. Just spreading happy wishes around the world.  This makes me happy.
3 : Tresaith beach, mid-Wales. This brings back fond memories of a perfect early August day last year.  It was a happy day on a happy beach with happy friends.  And now you can click on this photo to make it larger and have a wander around the beach. That would make me happy. The recollection makes me happy.
4 : A view from my garden.  A drop of moonlight falls from the leaves.  A magical site on a magical night in my magical garden.  This makes me happy and at peace with nature.
5:  The fox I observed in my garden from the living room window last summer.  This vision, along with the beaming smile that returned to my son's face, made me very, very happy.

I now have to pick five folks for tagging purposes and if they so wish, submit five things that make them happy.  I know that Jeff, Yolanda and Tammy have made me happy picking me to reveal five happy thoughts.  So who the heck shall I pick?  *Taps fingers on table.*

1 : The lovely, the adorable and gosh darn nice, Joylene.  Joylene Nowell Butler, Suspense Author

2 : The man who may also be a cat.  How about that.  Time to rhyme five happy thoughts?  I eagerly await your poetic reports.  Pat Hatt is all of that.   He can be found, with rhyming abound, here, me dear :  It's Rhyme Time

3 :  And here's my friend who calls me "quotidian."  Dave, are you ready to put up five happy thoughts?  A Day in the Life

4 :  Perhaps Elise would partake in this?  Five happy thoughts to make your day.  Elise Fallson

5 :  Okay Rob, what do you reckon?  After this, we can have a blogfest about not having a blogfest.  Five happy thoughts to share with us, Rob?  ...The Slightly Eccentric Diary of Rob Z Tobor...

Just wanted to let the five incredibly lucky recipients know there is no obligation to do this. I leave it up to your good selves.

Thank you, Jeff, Yolanda and Tammy for tagging me in such a happy tag.  That's it, I'm going for a lie down now.....

Thursday 23 May 2013

The Smile Returned.

I had waited for that day.  Longed for that  A day to fill my heart with joy, with relief.  The day the smile returned to my son's face.  That beaming smile of yesteryear.   The smile he once had that dazzles in the photo of my son.

It's been a time of learning.  Character defining through the tears, the pain, the desperation, the anguish.  I'm not a well man and when I saw my son plunged into the depths of despair, my sensitivity was acutely aware of the sadness.  Through his torment, I relived my own past torment.  I saw a reflection of a past self and I was sick with the burden of worry.

I have raised my son as a single father.  A single father busy being mentally ill and busy trying to provide a safe, loving environment for him.  A balancing act where the support we received was from beyond the screen.  And the calls to my family and friends.  Sadly, his mother would not understand and has stayed very much in the background.  Instead of a unified cause for the love of our son, my former spouse has never got involved.  The impact of this, profound and painful.  My son yearned for the love of his mother.

My blog, silly, surreal, serious.  The transparency I share with you is therapy.  Through the turmoil in my life, my son's life, it has been a tremendous struggle to write, to interact.  The distraction of his pain, the lack of a smile, has consumed every fibre of my being.  Many a time, I would have to stop writing just to comfort him through the latest crisis.

My son is now a young man of twenty four.  For the last six years, his employment opportunities have been limited.  Short term work and job agencies that would exploit.  He tried to get work.  Oh how he tried.  He became so disillusioned that many a day he would spend just sleeping.  I was scared, so very scared.  I would make an excuse to talk to him.  I wanted to know he was still alive.  Yes, the relentless onslaught of an indifferent world was taking its toll on his spirit.  The world was grinding him down.  He craved independence, to move on, to start his own life.  And here he was, trapped.   It was embarrassing to rely on dad all the time.

My son, Tristan, as of three months ago, finally got some full-time work.  It's mundane and does not utilise his civil engineering skills.  However, it has provided him with some cash flow and it gets him out of the house.  During all of this, he has been pursuing a career in the British Navy.  It's a long drawn-out process.  He's been totally focused on the Navy as being a good career move where he can use his skills that have gone to waste.

About two months ago, he went for his medical assessment with the Navy.  There were concerns that his blood pressure reading was too high.  This halted his ongoing career move pending further monitoring.  He was most distraught over this.  Yet, so focused, so determined was he that Tristan went on a strict diet and exercise regime.

My son went to his doctor and the doctor checked his blood pressure which was perfectly normal.  However, the Navy would not just accept a letter from his doctor.  This meant he had to go on a twenty four hour blood pressure monitoring machine.

On Tuesday afternoon, I took him to the doctors to get hooked up to the machine.  He then spent the next twenty fours being monitored by the machine in our home.  Wednesday afternoon and we went back to the doctors.  I sat in my car and waited for him to come back outside.

And there he was.  My son, triumphantly waving the printout from the monitoring.  "Dad!  My blood pressure results are just fine and the Navy will get my results.  Yes! Yes! Yes!"   Oh how I waited for the day that the smile returned to my son's face.  Wednesday was that day.  And now I smile at the thought of that beaming smile.  A smile that transported me back to yesteryear and the little boy in the photo.  I never stopped believing and now it has become true.

Friday 17 May 2013

Press The "Hash" Key.

At the Blogger's Information Hotline, we do value your feedback from Gary's previous posting.  Several of you pressed zero to listen to all the options again and you were given the opportunity to pass on suggestions to us.  We have listened to your suggestions.  So thanks to you who actually got through to a human by giving up on pressing zero and pressed the hash key which looks like this, #.  And no, we have no idea why it's called a hash key.
Rum-Punch Drunk stated, "That's brilliant Gary. Can't stop laughing right now. You should have done a real poll next to your post and got people to press the buttons just to see the end results and added a little 'Bloggy Wonderland' music too, ha ha ha.  I wonder what button Penny would have pushed.. Great stuff."
We shall partly compromise, Rum-Punch Drunk and above is the music that those of you who haven't been able to get through to us, would actually hear, if you could get through to us.  

mybabyjohn/Delores stated, "But, if like Gary, you blog to expand others horizons, entertain, spread love peace and 'star' because you are."  We have taken note of Delores' comment and we are touched by that.  In honour of her comment, we have now incorporated the star button, which looks like this, *, into our system.  If you press the star button, you will find out about bloggers we consider to embrace the all different, all equal ethos.
Al Diaz stated, "Gary, my friend, you forgot the "your call is important to us" line. And what about customer service? There must be someone you can yell at if something goes wrong in your blog. Maybe a robot that says "We care because you care" sort of thing. All companies have one."  We shall be changing our opening part when you have been spending an eternity waiting, by stating, "Please hang on, listen to 'Bloggy Wonderland' and know your call is important to us."  As for customer service, Al, um ha ha!  
Cherie Reich stated,  "What a fun post! It's a shame I'm too scared of phones to call. ;)"  We are saddened to hear that, Cherie.  I guess you'll just have to face the fax :)
L. Diane Wolfe stated,  "Is there a crisis number? One for those of us overwhelmed by all of it?"  We realise there is an urgency for such a number. Thus, we shall shortly be setting up a special number that takes you to the recorded sounds of whales.  
Sherry Ellis stated,  "Funny! I think I should press 3 to find out how to set up a blog hop. That might actually be useful."    Oh no, what have we done!?
Elise Fallson stated, "*presses 5* Great post! In other news, a group of frogs is called an army, but a group of toads is called a knot. (;"  To which we reply, Great comment! Thanks for sharing! I've noticed that there's a petition to have an official "Hedgehog Appreciation Day." I fondly recall my AMC Javelin. Quite a sporty number, red with white stripes.....
Julie Luek stated,  "If I press 6 three times, can I expect evil things to follow? This was hysterical"  If you press six, three times, you get directly through to some dude named Damien.
David stated, "Hi Gary,I think I'll press zero and have all the information relayed to me once again and then add my own category of "sycophantic comment leaver". This is a great post, Gary. Really funny. You're so wonderful. Really, I'm your number one fan! Very Best Wishes, your way, David."  David, we at  the Blogger's Information Hotline, completely agree with you. stated,  "Oh no, sorry. I seem to have misdialed. I meant to call the Adult Entertainment XXX Hotline. Never mind. *Click* Very funny post, Gary.  xoRobyn"  Robyn, we have noted your comment on Gary's blog and we are going to be setting up a * 69, number.  Oops, wait a sec, that's last call return.  Have to come up with another number that you can dial and will cost you an absolute fortune to use.
Laura Eno stated,  "Oh my... What happens if I repeatedly press 0? Will I become stuck in an interdimensional loop? Quite humorous, Gary. :D"  Yes you will. In unreality, you are not actually reading this within this dimension, but you are in alternate universe.
lotta joy stated, "Is there a number to press when the sidebar on EVERYONE'S blogs jiggles up and down? I have to read blogs at my own risk of getting a migraine!"  Nothing more annoying that a jiggling sidebar. We blame it on those who insist on having so many applications on their site that it takes two hours to load up their blog and actually read the darned thing. By that time, personally, we've lost the will to live. Press zero, listen to 'Bloggy Wonderland' and if you actually get through to a Blogger representative, you can make a suggestion to have the technical department try and eliminate the jiggling. Hint, just press the hash key. In the meantime, please try to avoid having a migraine by ignoring all those sites with the jiggling sidebars, which I guess, includes your own :)
Lisa stated, "I love # 9!!!! Actually they were all great. What a cool idea. Wish I could actually have that on my blog on the comments part... I'm laughing out loud now!"  We at the Blogger's Information Hotline, most assuredly agree with what you have mentioned.  We do hope you have some fun with this cool idea.
ilima stated, "I finally found the true meaning of IWSG...haha."  Ah yes, "I Was Seeking Gary."  We have noted that this been a good way for those participating at the other "IWSG" to remind them and others to maybe get involved with that one.  
Alex J. Cavanaugh stated,  "I guess I'll be pressing nine! Don't need more followers. Just want to support the ones I have now."  At the Blogger's Information Hotline, we would like to inform you that when you press number nine, it takes you to here,  Alex J. Cavanaugh: The Insecure Writer's Support Group  We have noted that "I Was Seeking Gary", has been a great way to remind folks who might like to check out the link.
At the Blogger's Information Hotline, we paid full attention to the comments in the previous posting.  And these were but a sample.  We truly appreciated all of them.  If none of this posting makes any sense to you, maybe the previous posting, might make things clearer, Blogger's Information Hotline.  Then again, perhaps not.
Good grief, what a long posting.  "Hello" if you skimmed to here! 

Wednesday 15 May 2013

Blogger's Information Hotline.

"Welcome to the Blogger's Information Hotline.  For the latest blogfests information, press one.  For the latest blog hops information, press two.  To set up your own blogfest, or blog hop, or blog party that you make out is because you care about positive interaction, but actually it's your way of accumulating followers, press three. For the latest information on how to be a blatant blogging self-promoter, press four or three..  For how to be even better at leaving vague comments that have absolutely nothing to do with the posting,  press five.  To learn to be really good at being a cynical blogger, press six.  To find out how to be an incredibly sarcastic blogger, press seven.  To leave comments to humour 'comedy' bloggers and pretend that their stuff is funny, when you know it isn't, press eight.  To find out more about "IWSG" or 'I Was Seeking Gary', press nine.  To have all the options repeated and to add your own suggestions to the Blogger's Information Hotline, press zero."

""Please stay on the line. Keep listening to 'Bloggy Wonderland'.  There are one million calls ahead of you....."

Monday 13 May 2013

"A" Is For "Awards."

"A" is for "Awards."  Oops, that challenge has finished.   Well, after they've finished with the reflections upon the reflections postings and how they survived the challenge postings.  Actually, by that time, it will most likely be April Fool's Day, 2014.  

And here's another oops.  Waiting in the wings were four awards bestowed upon myself or the real superstar of this unassuming blog, Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar!   Just to confirm, they weren't literally waiting in the wings.
The lovely Diane Perry passed on this award to me, the alleged human.  In Diane's article in regards to the above award, she gave seven reasons as to why she started to write.  In my case, I'll give you one reason why I decided to write.  I consider writing a therapeutic resource.  Diane, it was most kind of you to think of me in regards to the "Very Inspiring Blogger Award."  I would forward on this award, but I now find it a difficult dilemma in who to choose.   I hate selecting bloggers and then think, "doh, why didn't I include that person?"  If you have never visited Diane's blog, you can find it here, Working 2 Write  You can find out about her book, "One Hundred Ways for a Chicken to Train its Human." at this link, 100 Ways for a Chicken to Train its Human   Thanks again, Diane and may you have much fulfilment in your writing endeavours.
Our amazing dog buddy, Hawk, passed on the above award to Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar and yes me, Penny's human.   Now then, Penny and myself note a whole bunch of rules to this award such as answering questions.  I'm sure that Hawk will understand that a lot of the questions in awards get somewhat repetitive and we wouldn't want to start repeating ourselves.  So what Penny and I will do is thank Hawk so very much and y'all should please go visit Hawk at this here site, browndog cbr
Our adorable friend, Joylene, passed on the, "One Lovely Blog Award", to yes, Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar!   Penny is supposed to mention seven things about her modest self.  She's done that before and she hopes Joylene will understand that she's way too shy to repeat seven things about her modest self.  Penny would like to inform you, if by some incredible reason, you haven't visited Joylene's site, here it is, eh,  Joylene Nowell Butler Suspense Author.  Before Penny went for her tenth nap of the day, she asked me, yes me, her mere human, to say, "thank you very much, human, Joylene."
Oh my goodness and this was a bit of a shock.  I received the above award from Mark Means.  Me thinkest this is kinda' ironic.  What Mark stated in regards to the award was that the rules were pretty straightforward.  Um, take a deep breath, Gary. list your ten favourite bloggers from the past A to Z Challenge.  Yes, Mark included me in his list of ten!   Considering I didn't actually participate, would never participate, to have been included is actually quite a compliment in a bizarre sort of way.  It's true, my anarchic alternative astounding alphabet challenge, the "Z to A", was intended to try and bring some light-hearted relief to those who were participating.

Mark, I'm flattered you would include me in your notable list of ten.  I pass this award onto all those involved in the A to Z Challenge who embraced the ideals of a sharing, caring blogging community.   If you haven't had the pleasure of meeting Mark, you can find him here, Left and Write.  Thanks again, Mark, it was a pleasant surprise :)

Okay, that's it.  I broke the rules on the awards. Please forgive me.  Please forgive Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar!  

Thursday 9 May 2013

Just Gone Five On A Mid-Spring Morn.

It was just gone five on a mid-spring morn.  I strolled to the top of our garden.  And to the north east, I looked, so longingly and listened, so carefully.  I watched the gentle swaying of newly budded trees.  Sweet songs of morning birds, enchanted with their call. 
To the north west, through the branches on the tree, I saw the sleepy town, noted the rolling hills.  
And on this magical morn, resplendent colours of a Pieris bush, a "Forest Flame", dazzled proudly in the early light.
The wee folks looked so happy.  The solar lamp wind chime now had its pride of place.  The breeze whooshed by.  The windmill spun.  The wind chime played a nature's tune.
Back inside and beyond the window, beyond the picket fence, beyond the wee folks, the windmill, the wind chimes, the eerie mist of magic, a foreground to the pink tinged sky.  Soon the sun would rise above the eastern horizon.  Symbolic of hope in this green and pleasant land.  

Sunday 5 May 2013

A Nice Glow.

Greetings, yes it's me, Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar.  How are you?  In this photo, I'm snuggled up in a cosy chair.  The front half of the chair has a black booster seat that I sit on to help me reach the keyboard and see the computer screen.
My human, Gary, has been testing out solar lamps.  Brought a bunch of them indoors and recharged their batteries.  He really likes solar lamps.  We are both hoping that when he takes them outside into the magical garden, they will glow through the night.  Cast a warm ambience upon the enchanting garden of magical wee folks.
The ball of illumination you see is a solar lamp wind chime.  Tomorrow, the music of nature shall be playing sweet tunes to the wee folks.
Thus, my friend, soon the magical, enchanting garden shall be awash with glowing lights.  Very much like the night that Fidelina, the beautiful fairy princess and Geoffrey the garden gnome, were wed.  

Thursday 2 May 2013

Normal, Well Almost Normal Service Has Resumed.......

Gosh n'stuff, wasn't that um fun in April.  So many folks bringing further awareness of the alphabet.  "A is for Arghhh!"   "B" is for Belch!"  Ah yes and the letter "M", my alternative anarchic alphabet challenge, the "Z to A", met the "A to Z", at that point.  Just like two very different alphabet ships passing in the night.  "M is for Metrosexual."   "Z is for Ziggy played guitar...."

Maybe I might do a reflections post.  Yep, just take a photo of my mirror.
No, the above photo is not my mirror!  Suddenly, my blog roll has this popping up.  No more of that "A is for Apple." or "Z is for Zap My Zipper!".  If you don't know about the group mentioned in the photo, the following information can further clue you in >>>> Alex J. Cavanaugh: The Insecure Writer's Support Group   This group is often referred to as the "IWSG."  This got my delusional mind all excited.  I thought "IWSG" meant, "I Was Seeking Gary."  I'm devastated to find out different.  

So now we are in May.  As in the month of May.  Before you ask....And now for something completely important.
Do you think the above photo is self-explanatory?  Of course. "I just want to go home and draw bunnies..."  Much to my surprise, the lovable, shy and oh so unassuming Tammy Theriault, begged me, sorry, asked me, ordered me, to be interviewed.  

After several back and forth responses.  Replies to replies to replies and recaps to recaps to recaps, the interview, thankfully ended.  Yes, I survived.  However, I've got this urge to hang out with my friend, "The Sasquatch."  

If you haven't yet dropped by and read this must-read interview on Tammy's fantastically awesome n' stuff site, you will discover this life-changing event, over here, yes over here>>>>>;MY LIVE, not so really but kinda, CHAT WITH GARY PENNICK!!

Normal, well almost normal service has resumed........