“mahalo”…to my followers…

Hawaiian for…Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

It always amazes me when another “follower” hops aboard hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul. 

No kidding! 

There are millions of awesome writers and photographers on WordPress. Capturing even a fraction of them with a post or two is mind-boggling. To have them sign up for more than that is beyond comprehension. Truly…beyond hugmamma’s comprehension.

I’m not sure how others with as many as a thousands followers…or more…even begin to repay all the visitors to their blogs. That alone could be a full-time job. When do they have time to live? 

I tip my hat in homage to those who can keep one hand permanently affixed to their keyboard, while fulfilling all their other obligations with the other hand. I’m not one of them. Never will be.

Taking time out every now and then to thank those who consider my writing worth reading is what I can manage without totally upsetting mine and my family’s pineapple cart. That and including as many as WordPress will allow in my community of photos in the left-hand margin of hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul. BTW…if you click on a photo, you’ll be magically transported to that blog site…for more personal stories.

One other thing I try to do faithfully is repay visits to those who click “like” on my posts and/or leave comments. I figure if they take the time…so should I. It may take me a while, but I try very hard to keep this promise to myself. Even as family and pets call my name…”Mama! Mama!”

In further appreciation, I’ll remember all of you in a collective prayer. 

…for you…hope, joy, and peace…always!croppedphoto

………hugmamma.

 

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nurturing thursdays

What I find most fascinating about Word Press is the inter-connection of people the world over…all from different walks of life. I know of no other platform from which folks can launch their talents…hidden or otherwise. So while I enjoy doing my thing, I can’t help but promote others who do their thing.

DJM Rakiey at http://www.djmrakiey.wordperss.com posted the following on his blog…Images and Words. His perspective as a photographer is unique, at least from my perspective as a writer. 

LIFE IS LIKE A CAMERA

Focus on what’s important.

Capture the good times.

Develop from the negatives.

And if they don’t work out,

Take another shot.

…djm…a photographer with a wise soul…and a talent for words…

………hugmamma.

wordpress family award

wordpress family awardIt’s been sometime since I’ve actually accepted an award. Not because I don’t want to, but because I’m not as adept at the intricacies of accepting as I’d like to be. However the time has come for me to jump back in the saddle, so to speak, and take this horse by the reigns, and gallop full speed ahead.

Stigma Hurts Everyone at http://stigmahurtseveryone.wordpress.com/ initiated the Word Press Family Award to help acknowledge those who have influenced our blogging in some way. So in no particular order are a few of the sites whose words have touched me. There are numerous others, of course, and I hope they know they are just as worthy as those who are mentioned.

cyclingrandma… http://cyclingrandma.wordpress.com/

believe anyway… http://believeanyway.wordpress.com/

figments of a dutchess… http://figmentsofadutchess.com/

pocket perspectives… http://pocketperspectives.wordpress.com/

nuvofelt… http://chittlechattle.wordpress.com/

the laughing mom… http://thelaughingmom.wordpress.com/

tiny lessons blog… http://tinylessonsblog.wordpress.com/

random thoughts from midlife… http://randomthoughtsfrommidlife.wordpress.com/

50 year project… http://50yearproject.wordpress.com/

wingrish… http://wingrish.wordpress.com/

jeanne’s blog… http://nolagirlatheart.wordpress.com/

booksphotographsandartwork… http://booksphotographsandanrtwork.wordpress.com/

chronicles of illusion… http://jobryantz.wordpress.com/

marcia clarke-la chica writes… http://lachicawrites.com/

living the seasons… http://livingtheseasons.wordpress.com/

tiny lessons blog… http://tinylessonsblog.com/

for always being there…

…A GREAT BIG THANK YOU!!! Yes, yes…I mean you!

Whether or not I’m all present and accounted for, you seem always to be there…hovering…waiting…poised to pounce…when finally my fingers hit the keyboard once again, and my postings fly fast and furious.

I’m only one of millions of bloggers who thrive on having our voices echo throughout cyberspace. Without visitors like you, storytellers like me would cease to exist.

So please…take a bow…pat yourselves on the back…lift a glass of vintage bubbly, or chug-a-lug that amber draft…admire your magnificent reflection in the bathroom mirror…nibble on that sinful, chocolate-covered strawberry, or savor the delicate flavor of Russian caviar. Whatever makes you happiest…please…indulge.

It’s my turn to…honor you…for your…

…staying power…god bless!!!…

………hugmamma

English: Convenience food Why bend the neck to...

harsh reality…

Shirk The Harsh Reality

Shirk The Harsh Reality (Photo credit: Jeremy Brooks)

…the name of a blog created just this year.

I invite you to go take a peek…if you dare… http://aopinionatedman.com

The blog’s author is quite opinionated as you might guess, but he does not welcome opinions to the contrary.

While I may not agree with him in all matters, I do agree that argumentative narratives should go find themselves their own Internet home.

I highly recommend Word Press.

Four Women

Four Women (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One “harsh reality” post speaks of women as being crazed individuals who only make sense to one another. It goes on to inform men that women stir up a hornet’s nest…just because. And that we already know all the answers, before getting into an argument with men. 

A must read… women-are-crazy-the-way-to-lose-your-female-readers.”

Finally! A man who knows why women are placed on a pedestal…and offers no argument as to why we should be removed.

…need i say more…

………hugmamma.

wordpress…i’m impressed!

I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but I’ve done a little retooling of hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul. The look may appear the same but subtle changes, and some not so subtle, have been made in the placement of items.

You must think I’m a genie…a magician…a technological wizard! Truth be told…I’m no such thing.

I’m a fraud! And those who know me well know I’m the least savvy when it comes to gizmos and gadgets.

Everything you see before you is due to the genius that is Word Press. Their consistent  behind-the-scenes tweaking continues to enhance my blogging experience.

“Go big or go home!” seems to describe Word Press best.  Recently, my daughter said the same of me…

NASA Watching Atlantic Tropics: Katia, Tropica...

NASA Watching Atlantic Tropics: Katia, Tropical Storm Lee and System 94L [detail view] (Photo credit: NASA Goddard Photo and Video)

…go big…or go home!!!…

………hugmamma. 

in the spotlight…stories

Regular readers to my blog will have noticed that I’ve recently been reblogging posts from around the Word Press community. These are from folks…friends, really…who have generously spent time visiting  hugmamma’s, mind, body, and soul. I’ve returned the favor, as often as possible, to read their stories.

Spotlight on The Shadows

Spotlight on The Shadows (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve been moved to spotlight some of them here. I’m sure you’ll agree…they’re worth reading…or watching. Hopefully they touch you in some way. Whether they inspire, tweak your funny bone, are thought-provoking, or just plain…entertain.

…my gift…to you…wonderful stories…worth retelling…

………hugmamma.   🙂

evolution…mine

English:

English: “The Barnum & Bailey greatest show on earth Wonderful performing geese, roosters and musical donkey”. Chromolithograph. Français : Affiche originale pour le cirque Barnum obtenue par chromolithographie vers 1900. Traduction du texte “Barnum & Bailey, le plus grand spectacle sur terre. Ses merveilleuses oies et coqs dressées, son âne musicien. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s been 2 years since I gave birth to hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul. I did it in response to events that unfolded in the media like Barnum and Bailey‘s Three Ring Circus. The first was the 2008 Presidential Election; the second,  Michael Jackson’s death. Like many, I remained glued to my TV set for days on end.

What finally got me to put my thoughts into a blog was hearing the same refrain over and over again…”The American people feel…”

I often babbled to myself  “How the heck do they know what I think?” and “Who said they could speak for me?” Tell me you don’t have the same thoughts when you hear the pundits spinning their half-truths, or downright lies?

Well some things never change.

Here we are again…smack dab in the middle of another Presidential Election. Complete with the same spinning…day in…day out.

I won’t lie though. I love the high octane excitement, the back and forth, the “he saids” and the “he meants.” However I still cringe when I hear…”The American people feel…”

While little has changed on the outside…there’s been movement within.

I’ve evolved.

The change hasn’t been seismic. On the Richter scale…maybe a 2. Just enough for me to notice.

Two years ago, blogging was a new adventure for me.

At first I dabbled, writing more introspectively. I regurgitated the beauty I saw in the world around me. I reveled in happy thoughts and memories. My words were measured. I had no desire to tackle controversy, not wanting to offend. Never mind that I might be offended.

As I broadened my horizons to include other members of the Word Press community of bloggers, their realities seeped into mine…and mine into theirs.

Not all the stories I read had fairy tale endings. Not all writers came from happy places. Some came from dysfunction, as had I. Many sought encouragement and confirmation, as did I. There were safe havens. Places to go…for kind words, compassion, hope.

I was emboldened to take a stand. Speak my mind…my truth. And I supported the efforts of others to do the same.

Strangers…some who became friends…affirmed my thoughts, feelings, and opinions. Feeling encouraged, I moved forward taking control of my own life.

There was no looking back as I made my way, a day at a time.

I realized however, that my newfound confidence must be tempered with a large dose of humility. Having a following of readers is heady stuff. It can become an ego trip. Focusing too much upon becoming popular, as in how many hits are garnered, can lead one astray from one’s goal.

My goal has always been to write, and write well. If I publish a book someday, as some have suggested I do, that will be a bonus beyond what I’ve already accomplished.

With a lot of help from all of you, I’ve learned to accept who I am. I’ve gained the strength to stand firm in my convictions. I’m comfortable in my own skin. Others’ opinions matter, but no longer to my own detriment.

I matter…finally. 

Like the caterpillar that metamorphoses into the butterfly and the chameleon that adapts to its surroundings, I’ve gone from being a wise, old coot at 61…to being a wiser, older coot at 63.

Perfect I ain’t. I’ve still got the same body in need of repairs now and then. I don’t always eat right…and exercise regularly. I’m always behind the eight-ball when it comes to paying my respects to fellow bloggers…and accepting awards from some. I still lack some technological know-how.

I still make mistakes.

Think Tank

Think Tank (Photo credit: Robiwan_Kenobi)

In spite of my shortcomings, and who doesn’t have a few, I’ve planted my feet firmly and proclaimed to the world…

…i have arrived…and i ain’t going back…

………hugmamma.   😆

 

 

housekeeping…don’t put off til tomorrow…

While I’m in the neighborhood of stuff to do with my laptop, the internet, and specifically Word Press, I thought I’d mention a couple of things.

Until just yesterday I’d been having blogging withdrawal, partially owing to the fact that my site, hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul, looked somehow different. I don’t mean what you the reader can see, but what I see while writing my posts. Or rather, what I wasn’t seeing anymore.

Having established in my previous post that I’m an “old dog learning new tricks,” or at least trying, when something, however subtle, changes…I’m flummoxed.

I’ll continue doing what I always do, for some time in fact, all the while feeling like there’s a mosquito buzzing around which I tend not to silence. Too busy. Can’t take the time. Maybe it’ll revert back…on its own.

Perhaps all the faldarall with not being able to download pictures from my camera finally got me thinking about the subtle, but disturbing, difference in the writing of my posts.

I’d asked Word Press Support about my concerns earlier. In fact I inquired a few times. Responses came quickly, always asking me to take some kind of picture so that they’d know exactly what I meant.

You must know me by now. I hadn’t a clue as to what they were asking me to do. So I gave up…and moved on.

What was no longer visible to me were the statistics to do with visitors to my blog, the list of my subscribers, or the pictures offered for my use by Zemanta. While none were essential to my blogging, they definitely enhanced the environment in which I did my writing. Like having “all my ducks in a row” before I started the process.

Some of you may already be smiling, knowing what I’m about to say. And you’re correct if you guessed that I’d not heeded the warning from Word Press to update my search engine status.

Of course I’d asked my husband every time the message blinked across my laptop screen. Since he has no clue about Word Press, he told me to ignore the icon. So like the dutiful wife that I am, I did.

Well, Word Press knew what they were saying.

Yesterday my husband finally agreed to help me upgrade my search engine status after I read another blogger’s comment elsewhere in the Word Press community. I wasn’t the only one having issues.

Logo used from the start of the Chrome project...

Logo used from the start of the Chrome project until March 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Upon the excellent recommendation of that fellow blogger I am now using the Google Chrome internet search engine. As promised, the visuals are far superior to what I’d experienced with EI, Internet Explorer. 

And as the lyrics  to the song go…I can see clearly now… 

The end result of all this being…I can once again view the statistics of visitors to hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul, as well as Zemanta’s pictorial offerings, and best of all…the subscribers for whom I am deeply grateful. I thought I’d never again know who you are.

Too many to list…

…heartfelt thanks…to each and every one of you…

………hugmamma.  (The only thing I still have to figure out is how to do “smiley faces” again. Any suggestions?)

…not for the faint of heart…

My previous post on ad trickery has given rise to this one.

NASA

NASA (Photo credit: Luke Bryant)

After navigating the inroads of the internet, more specifically WordPress, for approximately 2 years I don’t feel as knowing as one might assume. I’m always behind the proverbial 8-ball. Metaphorically speaking, I’m like the astronaut gripping onto the tail of a rocket as it blasts off into space. Following the instructions to the letter, my companions hopped aboard while I was still finding my way through the maze that is NASA.

Just when I thought I’d mastered my little corner of the WordPress universe, I find it’s been remodeled. Tweaks and twinges here and there have streamlined the process, making it more convenient, more glitzy. God bless the staff who are always looking after our best interests. It’s like big government. We cotton to whatever it is they decide…regardless of party affiliation. Conservatives and liberals alike are always pushing and pulling us where they want us to go.

As in life, blogging requires a firm forcus on what it is I’m about. Regardless of the environment in which I write, I strive to hold fast to my values, my purpose. Accumulating an empire of readers looms large. It’s like winning the Powerball Lottery. Who wouldn’t want that?!

Establishing popularity as a goal…fails in life…and in blogging…with integrity. Better to have a few true believers…than a hoard of yes-men and women. 

I’ve visited a number of blogs that are gems waiting to be discovered. My compassion is always for the underdog, so I’ve gone out of my way to help bring them along by mentioning them in posts, hoping that others will turn their attention to the less popular…but just as deserving.

Blogging is not an easy undertaking, but fun can be had by all if we remember that it is fun. And that everyone has something worthwhile to contribute. So jump on in…

Jumping in the pool

Jumping in the pool (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

…to the shallow end…or the deep end…the water’s fine!

………hugmamma.     🙂

 

trick ads…

Earlier I posted that I’d been invited to participate in WordAds, paid advertising sponsored by WordPress. I declined because of security concerns, moved on and eventually forgot about it. A visit to another blog seconds ago jarred me back into that old conversation.

Without intending to click on a “paid advertisement,” i.e. a commercial…who chooses to watch them, anyway?…I discovered I wasn’t viewing what I thought was part of the blogger’s post. I had just clicked $$$ into the owner’s pocket.

Advertising advertising

Advertising advertising (Photo credit: Toban Black)

While I’m not adverse to capitalism, I’m not particularly fond of deception. After I’d done the dastardly deed, or while I was scrutinizing the youtube video as to its relevance to the post, I noticed in small print “advertising” floating just above and to the left of the commercial.

Feeling bamboozled, I discontinued watching the ad. So I’ve no idea what it was selling. Instead I perused the site. With 4,000,000 page views and thousands of followers the blogger is building quite a nest egg.

The writing is good, as are the photos. I’ve no complaint there. I’m just a little skeptical when it comes to visits to “like” other blogger’s posts, because etiquette calls for return visits and “likes.” A silent handshake, if you will.

There’s a hope that behind it all is a genuine expression of favorability. I don’t like to participate in popularity contests, especially when there’s a payoff involved.

Ads on blogs is fine, when they’re above board. When they sneak up on the reader, I’m not a fan. After unknowingly clicking on the ad, I felt like a “deer in headlights.” I think I’ll be more careful…where I wander…so as not to have another…

Deer in Headlights

…aha!…gotcha…moment!!!…

……….hugmamma.  

😦

…a picture’s worth…

…a thousand words, as the saying goes. And I just happened upon a blog which offers photos with captions. Simplicity personified.  Colorspark at http://colorspark79.wordpress.com/about/.

Photography blogs seem the most popular. Images capture what words may not. And most folks these days have precious little time to spend more than a couple of seconds at each stop on the internet. I consider myself very lucky that hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul is one of those blips along the way. Especially since I tend to yak a lot.

From time to time I’ll recommend another “blip” for you to check out. But hey! It’s your couple of seconds…to spend any way you like. Your choice…

  

  

Hosts

Hosts (Photo credit: JanneM)

…only a suggestion… 

………hugmamma.   😉 

…life is but a dream…

I never know what I’ll find when I venture forth into the wide world of WordPress. Actually, much of my wandering is prompted by visitors who find me, or my blog…hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul.

Storytellers abound in the blogosphere; many of them wonderful writers to boot. One such is “based on a true story” at http://currierose.wordpress.com. On a recent visit I learned that Currie Rose is taking a sabbatical from her blog. I’m certain many of us question the authenticity of our lives from time to time.

Am I doing what I should be doing? For whose benefit, mine or others? Am I being honest with myself, or am I revealing what I think others want to hear?

It’s good to step back, and reassess where it is one stands. I’ve done that, not so much as a preplanned decision but more as the result of other things that needed my undivided attention.

Whatever the reason it’s good to live life, seeing where the next bend in the road takes us.

In bidding us farewell for a time, Currie Rose offered up a goodbye song on youtube. As it turns out I found another song more appropriate to my feelings as I continue wending my way through life. Though reminiscent of childhood days long gone, its message is timeless. See if you agree…

The Carl J. B. and Olive Currie Rose Fund assu...

The Carl J. B. and Olive Currie Rose Fund assures that all patients receive a red rose upon admittance. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Carl J. B. and Olive Currie Rose Fund assures that all patients receive a red rose upon admittance. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

…go with the flow…life will lead…………hugmamma.

…a little help…from my friends…

English: friends like you

English: friends like you (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Not having much luck getting an answer to my question from WordPress Support, so I thought I’d ask you, my friends.

As I’ve wandered around reading other blogs, I’ve noticed that some have customized their “leave a comment” text. Some are witty, others to the point. Having seen quite a few at this juncture, I’d like to say a few words…that are my own, rather than using the generic.

In perusing the “Widgets,” I’ve been unable to figure out how to alter the “leave a comment” text. And in attempting to ask WordPress Support, I can’t even type in responses to their prompts. All rather frustrating to say the least. So I thought I’d circumvent the “brick wall,” and ask some of you who have mastered the technique.

…any…and all responses…are humbly accepted…

………hugmamma.   😦