Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Go It Alone, Together: IWSG & Baby Stuff

Have you noticed the change in our world?

We live in a society that seems increasingly isolated and connected at the same time. Everyone is interacting online, while face to face time is diminishing--even when surrounded by people.

At the same time, I have friends in Japan, South Africa, Australia and more, and I wouldn't have met any of them if not for this wonderful thing called blogging. And writing (of course). How cool is it to know that no matter where I go in the WORLD, I will have a friend near by? Mind-blowing.

Speaking of friends, a wonderful but newer blogging buddy decided to give me the online high five, aka, a blog award. *warm fuzzies*

So to Mandy, a HUGE thank you for the

(Designed and created by Okoto Enigma)

1: Put the award logo/image on your blog.
2: List the rules.
3: Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
4: Mention the creator, Okoto Enigma, of the award and provide a link as well.
5: Tell your readers three things about yourself.
6: Nominate 10 to 20 people & notify them.
7: Ask your nominees any five questions of your choice, one weird or funny question.

Three Things About Me:

1. I'm on the verge of having baby #5, which is mind-blowing. With 17 years between kids, I thought I'd be done a LONG time ago, but life doesn't play out the way you plan. Thankfully so. (I'd have missed so much epicness!)

2. My recent cheese obsession is Edam. Mmmm. There are so many AMAZING cheeses, but I found a regular import for this awesome cheese, and wow. Good stuff.

3. I don't geek out or form crushes on characters, actors, artists, etc. I'm not even super loyal to specific authors. (Sorry!) I love to read WIDELY and meet new writerly voices with almost every book. This is why I've read over 500 different authors and counting. AND I typically review all of them, unless there's one I really can't review because I didn't connect with the writing (that's like 1 in 50 books), or where I had to put the book down because the scene left me blushing furiously enough I could never recommend it. Still, I will NEVER forget a book I loved, and will typically circle back around to a series that grabbed me. Even 10 years later.

Questions I was asked:

1. What is your favorite breakfast (food + drink)? French toast with either water or apple juice.
2. If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? So many places... The plan is to pick up and move places once we retire, living in varying foreign countries for between 3 and 18 months. Why? Because how else do you REALLY get to know the culture?
3. What is the weirdest thing you have seen in someone else’s home? ...You want me to use my memory? At 9 months pregnant? Uh...
4. If you were arrested with no explanation, what would your friends and family assume you had done? Been falsely accused. But those who know I write would probably assume I'd researched something incriminating.
5. Is cereal a soup? / Is Boston cream … a pie or a cake? Cereal? No. Boston cream is a pie for sure.

Questions I'm asking:

1. Who is your inspiration?
2. What is the coolest or strangest place you've ever lived?
3. If you're not doing it already, what do (did) you want to be when you grow (grew) up?
4. If you had to live under the ocean, what would your best friend be? (Dolphin, shark, whale, seahorse, etc.) 
5. What's the last cheese you ate? ;)


I wish I could nominate everyone, just to let you all know how grateful I am for your friendship and writerly support. None of us would make it on our own, and I hope to one day get out and meet many of you wonderful people in my travels. After the baby is grown, just a bit. =)

Huge thanks for hosting
Alex CavanaughTyrean Martinson, Tara Tyler, 

Raimey Gallant, and Beverly Stowe McClure!

Last month, LA Dragoni shared GUARDIAN'S TOUCH along with two truths and one lie. Anyone who guessed which was the lie was entered to win up to two eBooks.

The game:

1. Once when riding with a friend, LA grabbed the dashboard and cried, “Careful! Watch out for the dog.” Her friend thought she was nuts, but when she turned the corner had to break to avoid hitting a dog running across the road.
2. LA has accurately predicted two earthquakes.
3. As a young girl, LA wanted to go on a day trip with her dad, but it was raining too hard. She flung her hands into the air and yelled stop. It did! Instantly! Though her father was freaked out, they departed on their adventure.

The lie: #1. It was actually a cat.

And the winner is:


Congrats, Mark!

And now it's time for me to be...

With a baby coming any day, I'm a tad bit distracted, but I'll be back when sanity prevails. In the meantime, I'm wishing you epic reads, many good feelings, and cheese. (Of course.)

Aren't you glad you don't have to go it alone? Tell me one unique/odd quirk about you? What's your favorite/least favorite thing about modern technology? Pick one of the above questions and tell me the answer in the comments!


  1. The blogging world has brought us all closer.
    You are a true reader, Crystal.
    Boston Cream filled donuts are neither pie nor cake - they are disgusting.

    1. haha! I beg to differ, Alex, Boston Cream donuts are one of my favorites! :)

    2. Well, somehow dieting for half a year makes those donuts sound like heaven. No?

  2. Yeh for blogging buddies and IWSG!

    The pic of the kids out playing cracked me up. :)

    Wishing you and your family the best! Happy Baby #5!

  3. Aw, thanks for nominating me.

    I love Edam. I'm so glad you've added it to your life.

    Good luck with the baby.

  4. Yeah, it seems everyone is on their phones all the time. I'm glad to have the behavioral health center where we interact with activities such as art and cooking. Some time we show each other pictures on on our cameras, play music on our phones, but we are there to interact. We need more activities like this for different people.

  5. I have another friend with five kids spread out over 17 years, so you are not alone.

    The last cheese I ate was soy.

  6. I had freshly crumbled blue cheese on a steak salad a few nights ago and it was fantastic! I love those powerful cheeses. Bring it on! I'll be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers for a smooth delivery! Much love and hugs.

    Enjoy the rest of your week!

  7. Congrats on your upcoming arrival! Enjoy that precious time. We'll still be here. *hugs*

  8. I love how blogging has introduced me to other writers I never would have met otherwise. And I love Boston Cream donuts and pie.

    The last cheese I ate was American, I think. Not very adventurous, but delicious.

    Stay safe during Irma!

  9. Wishing you a short and safe delivery of a beautiful and healthy baby. The last cheese I ate was sharp cheddar.

  10. Good luck with your birth!

    One bad thing about technology is that it leaves people reliant on machines, often not knowing how to cope when the machines break down. Many people don't know how to, or don't want to, e.g., sew or write by hand, or walk a little further than usual instead of driving or using public transportation.

  11. Right now, the air quality is so bad that I can't send my kids outside to play. >_< Hope your pregnancy continues to go well and that the baby comes out great!

  12. I wanted to be an archaeologist (Indiana Jones) or a detective (Nancy Drew). Hope you have a safe labor and delivery!

  13. The image of kids outside "playing" is perfect and kind of sad. However, I hear what you're saying about this connected world allowing us a wide-branching group of "friends." It's especially wonderful we have a chance to actually meet them in person. Happy babying!

  14. Best wishes with baby #5!

    My pet peeve of modern technology is how it's made everyone a bit meaner. Even the usually nice people will skewer another human without a second thought.

    I always thought they were Boston Creme Cakes. Because the bakery calls it a cake and that's yellow cake mix on the bottom. There probably is Boston Creme pie too, but I'd imagine that's a different thing.

  15. Good luck with #5! It's so exciting. And I did high five the screen. ;)

    Thanks for the nomination. I'm just going to answer the questions right here!
    1. Stephen King.
    2. Vancouver, BC. The ocean and mountains surrounding me.
    3. A teacher, an archaeologist, a police officer, and a criminologist. Good thing I write to be all those things!
    4. Poseidon!
    5. I had some cheddar and jack on crackers last night. :)

  16. My least favourite thing about modern technology is how much time it sucks up, completely unnecessarily. I also find it really hard not to pick up my phone and scroll randomly through social media when I'm watching something. Again, completely unnecessary, but I can't seem to help myself!

  17. Last cheese I ate was Brie! Wishing you lots of cheese and good luck with baby number 5.

  18. The world has become a smaller place thanks to the internet. I'm glad. The more I learn about other countries the more I get how much we have in common. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

  19. I love that high five!! Totally went for it. ^_^ Can't wait to answer those questions!

    French toast is awesome. And so is the writing community. I would have no sanity at all without the support I've gotten from so many awesome writing peeps. ^_^

    Oh my gosh, nine months! Any day sister is pregnant these days. I'll have my first niece or nephew soon!

  20. My good wishes, good luck too for when baby arrives.
    Loved the image you used ...

    All the best Jan

  21. Ahhh! Good luck with the baby! Also, I love the high five, I honestly high fived my computer because of that.

  22. Congratulations on the new baby. That is epicness!!

    Worst best/worst thing about technology is the ability to reach me anywhere. Great sometimes; horrible others.

  23. Epic congratulations to you and your growing family! X

  24. I've grown fond of horseradish cheese. Been seeing your posts of FB, and sending you prayers for a safe delivery and a healthy baby!!! Take Care.

  25. Very true about being connected yet disconnected. I fuss at my husband all the time about needing to be 'present' when at home and not working. He has a work phone and will always be on it even well after business hours. :(

    On the upside, as you said, I've met so many people through social media that I wouldn't have connected with otherwise.

  26. Good luck with baby #5 Very exciting!!
    And yes, some of the things I research make me nervous. I'm a writer! It's just research for my novel!! lol

  27. i don't know how you keep up with all those wonderful kids - i have it rough with 3!
    cute award and enjoyed the answers

    hope you have an easy delivery!
    Tara Tyler Talks

  28. Best wishes on the baby. So exciting!
    I still get amazed that I could go pretty much anywhere and have someone to meet for coffee.
    One of my blogging friends is going on the same Portugal cruise as my mother. They are going to meet.Crazy! Looking forward to pictures of your sweet baby.

  29. Wow good luck with baby #5! I can't believe your old enough to have 17 years between them!! My husband and I also want to retire and just live in places! We have a whole list of U.S and overseas spots! Maybe we'll end up living in the same place one day! :)

  30. Enjoy the baby time and the family time!!! Hugs to you all :)

    I do worry about the things I research online as well! I want to type (I'm a writer!!!) in with each search :)

  31. You just hit so many of my current internal plights. <3 your answer about memory cracked me up!!!

  32. Can't imagine why you are distracted. Just going to have a baby. Yes, it's great that you know people everywhere. And can't believe you found a new cheese obsession. Sounds yum!

  33. I wouldn't be where I am without blogging. I'd be lonely, alone, and shivering in the dark somewhere. lol

  34. Welcome to the new one soon to be here. Hope all goes with EASE. Loved learning about you. HUGS Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

  35. Congrats on the baby. Wishing you well.

  36. I know what you mean about connecting online vs. face-to-face time. You know what else I miss? Letters and phone calls. They were different than getting just "likes" on Facebook posts, especially because at least with letters and phone calls people still talked to each other, unlike with the Facebook likes.

  37. So close to that next baby :)

    Yeah, I'm always surprised by how little literal face time our society has these days. Soon, all babies will be test tube babies cuz nobody can stand a true physical connection to each other.

  38. Hi Crystal - congratulations on getting to 9 months and being (perhaps?!) sober enough to write a blog post ... wishing you and the family all the very best for the new few settling in weeks with # 7 in the family ... 5+2 = 7 ... doesn't it! Enjoy ... and yes I agree having buddies around the blogosphere is amazing - and I'd love to pop off and visit many - cheers and take care of you and the newbie, and the rest of the family - cheers Hilary

  39. Edam is delicious. Can't wait to hear the good news of your new family member's arrival (the last days are always the worst). The blogosphere is amazing in so many ways. Keeping you in my prayers!

  40. Congrats on the baby! I want to say I hope the baby arrives soon but that means the sleepless nights start. Which is worse???

  41. Ok, I had to do the high five. Wishing you the best with the soon to be arrival of #5. I hope you are safe in Florida.

  42. I've noticed the world getting more divided and polarized in the last few years. I think it's something about the way the internet connects people with similar views, and reinforces people's entrenched positions.

    High five, Crystal :)

  43. I'm really glad I don't have to go it alone. I love my family and my friends. I am thankful for IWSG and the whole blog world of authors.

  44. I love social media for the friendships but being on social media can be draining.

  45. Thanks for the nomination. Give me about a year before getting around to it because that's what happened with the last two I was nominated for. XD

  46. That's true! I think we should strike a balance between spending time online and face to face bonding with friends. I like to think too that thru blogging, I've gained friends worldwide.

  47. I love our blogging community!
    Wishing you all the best with number 5!!
    Big Hugs!

  48. Didn't expect to see my name on that list, so thanks. ^_^ I'll try to get an entry for that done next week.

    And I'm not a very social person, so I'm glad for the connections I've made online. It gets harder and harder to make friends as I get older, so it's helped me a lot to meet some new people I never would have otherwise known.

  49. Family, friends, and God get me through the tough times. So exciting about your soon to arrive new baby.
    And thank you for adding me to your list. Will work on it next week. I'm honored. Have a lovely week.

  50. I'll admit I love going to Trader Joes when they have their cheese samples out. So nice. This was posted on the 6th…I wonder if baby #5 has made an appearance yet!

  51. Face to face time is diminishing... It sure is. People come to your party and start chatting with other people, not in person but using their frigging phone. You're having dinner with friends and the first thing they do is take a picture of their plate to show it off on facebook. Dear Lord, when will it end?

    Never. That's right.

    Hello Crystal.

  52. I hope you're enjoying your new baby and the delivery went well!

  53. Ha, ha, ha! You'll be back when sanity prevails. See you in about 18 years.

  54. Congratulations on the new cute baby!

  55. Congratulations on that cute little baby! BTW, was Edam cheese a pregnancy thing or do you still like it?

    A strange thing about me...I have an addiction to lavender oil. I have a bed spritz, massage oil, lotion, a room (um two) infusers... I may have a problem???

  56. Baby #5.........Oh my. Thinking about it makes me really tired! Several of my friends do a good amount of baby sitting and talk about how tiring it is. Turning 67 next months, reminds me of that as well. Hope all goes well for you with delivery and that you have some help lined up? I'm in a brie cheese phase, love it with jam, mostly fig and white wine and crackers. Been away from blogging for far too long and am getting back to it. Internet, blogging, facebook, and fitbit keep me very connected. I've met face to face with several friends who were on line friends. Sometimes we facetime, or talk on the phone, or use messenger on facebook where we get to see and hear each other. I think that might be the difference for adults and kids/teens. Adults become more social, whereas kids/teens substitute and become less social.
    Traveling Suitcase

  57. Thank you so much for nominating me. Sorry I got here so late. I'm glad I met you for sure.


Hit me with your cheese!