It´s no Ordinary year

The photo we entered for this year´s Photo Contest finally made it into 2021´s Calendar

This year is not only all about the tons of masks we bought and wore, or the excessive disinfecting of everything we´ve touched and our hands turning into a resemblance of chicken skin. Aside from all this hygienic crazy mantra that becomes a new norm now, I realized that this year was actually a no ordinary for me, personally.

This year also is the year for the first time that I joined a photography competition here in our local town, hosted by one of our local Bank, the Volksbank Raiffeisenbank Bayern Mitte.I actually mostly forget its name because you know, its long and its kind of twisting my tongue. Well, that´s what German does to me.Anyway, turned out that loved our photo and included it for next year´s Calendar called “ Die schönsten Motive Fotowettbewerbs 2020″.

I was thrilled and excited.I was not expecting that my photo could be chosen considering that there were so many nice landscape photos who were chosen in the whole region.We just got lucky, I guess. We received a prize and donated half of it to another organization.It was a great experience and I think it made our year a certain mark, to remember, to be thankful for the beauty of nature who seemed to be the only one unaffected by depressing situations around us.

The photo that I took is titled “Glacisbrücke im Herbst” ,or the Glacis Bridge in Fall. I love this photo particularly since it caught the mystic beauty of Fall in my neighborhood, plus this bridge is quite fascinating as well since its one of the landmark near to where I lived.

Whenever I crosses this bridge, I am being reminded of this recognition.Who could have thought….?

The “Mushroom” Water Towers of Kuwait

When I was still living in Kuwait, I took pictures of most of the places where I visited. It´s pretty normal since I am an Expat working there and yes, the culture is different and there are so many things that is new to me.My iPhone Gallery was filled with snapshots, candid selfies and landscape portraits which I even used most of the time in my Blog articles.Using these Photos rekindled my memories of being in there and appreciating the unique beauty that Kuwait has, like for example this “Mushroom ” Water Towers .

At first glance you wouldn´t even imagined that it´s a modern water supply system, but then it was.The shape, the color, the size, everything about this symbolic reinforced concrete system is unique.Maybe to local Kuwaitis it´s just a normal water towers but definitely not for me. I am still amazed and perplexed of its function and design.Clever design from VBB , A Swedish engineering company, with Sune Lindström as its chief Architect.No wonder it won the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, cycle 1980.

Mr. Antoon Kuhlmann from Hortus Nijmegen in the Netherlands along with Dominique Clement sent an email to me informing me if they can use my photo as a research material to be used in their upcoming manuscript about Mushrooms.What a brilliant idea!

This book really expains what special role Mushrooms played in Arts, Culture and yes, in Nature.I was totally honored to be a part of this book, to think even that Kuwait´s Water Towers was used as an example how Architects used mushroom as a concept for building a modern water system.

Just in time before Christmas I got a copy of this Book and couldn´t feel more proud than ever.It is cleverly done !Unfortunately, it´s only in Dutch language.

This post is not a promotion of the book mentioned above. I just felt grateful that one of my post and photo was used to compile all the amazing information supplied by this book.The Dutch Autors did a wonderful job in coming up to this phenomenal piece. If you are reading up until this part and interested to buy a copy, you can find the link Here.

Thought this year was only staying at home, social distancing and wearing masks…not for us actually.It was a no ordinary year because of this Online Art Project by the International Youth Library in Munich ( International Jugendbibliotehek München) called ” Kinder, malen sich Selbst” or the I-solation, Children ,draw yourselves, an online Exhibition initiative organized by this Library . The exhibition was joined by 800 participating children all over the world!

And my little daughter joined herself into this exhibition and by Spring of 2020, her drawing was submitted to the Library.By around June, we were invited to visit the Exhibition and had a Tour in their Library and see the beautiful grounds of Blutenburg Castle. It was her first, at the age of 5.

But as I wrote before, this year was actually a legendary year for all of us.Came December and we are still under stressed because of Corona infections, in Isolation and wearing Masks in School.Christmas Markets are cancelled and we entered a second Lockdown on Dec 16. Another melodramatic feeling of isolation creeps us, but then home is where we felt the most safe, well I guess, for everybody´s sake it´s the ony way out.

Nothing more to expect, we can´t change the tides.But then, we managed to have a meaningful Christmas season at home, without the frantic craze and glittering lights.

Here in Germany, children and adults are crazy about Adventskalendar. It´s literally a calendar, a coundown from the start of Advent to Christmas Eve.So this time, our local town hosted a drawing competition for children for the Adventskalendar with Winter moments as a theme. Once again, my daughter had her entry and yes, her drawing was chosen to be in the 15th day of Adventskalendar. On that day,she met the Christkind to receive her prize but of course, with a mask and distance!

Little clever Artist being proud of her Artwork.

I guess a Not Ordinary year means that we stopped expecting, and more of appreciating and giving.4 days to go til this year ends and I just want to document it here in my Blog what a meaningful year it was as well.There´s nothing much to tell of what we did, but we did the best of what we can do…

I think we´ll do this again next year if there´s another chance again!

Did you have a no Ordinary moment this year?

Alles gute und Tschüss!

The Liebster Award and my 11 answers to Pay it forward!

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Last week, one of my favorite Blogger, Timo of CrazychineseFamily  mentioned my Blog for another Liebster Award.For those of you who have been here for quite some time,you might think that awards like this are only nuisance and better to simply  ignore,just like  virtual chain letters. I won’t deny that after a year of blogging here, I consider myself still a newbie, It still brought a smile in me whenever someone mentions my Blog or even highlight my page. I feel grateful and I always appreciate the thought of the Blogger  behind it. I remember receiving my  first Liebster Award last January 2016 and since then, I had great respect for the awesome community that I have here in WP who took their time to pass on this  kind gesture of appreciation. Without them, my Blog will just be lost in the net. I know time is precious for all of us, and there is no “newbie” or even an “oldie” once you decide to “Pay it forward”something like the Liebster- a virtual love. It’s all your choice.

Anyway, what I like about Timo is his down-to-earth posts about what  his life after  he married into a crazy chinese family. If you are also an Expat, his story of  Raising a Kung-Fu baby and being an Expat Papa in Germany might inspire you how to raise a bilingual child as well. If you want to read real, and personal stories about his crazy MIL (Mother in Law), WhiteMale/AsianFemale relationship ( or interracial couple)  and multiculturalism, check out Crazychinesefamily Blog and you will know why it won last year’s Nepaliaustralian Blog awards!

Now what is The Liebster Award?

Liebster is a German word meaning beloved or dearest. It is an online appreciation in form of virtual award which started in 2011 passed on by bloggers to fellow bloggers for enjoying and valuing their work. The idea is to recognize their efforts and give credit.

Here’s my response to Timo’s questions :

Why did you start blogging? 

I’ve always wanted to have a Blog but because of work, I can’t find the time and I don’t know how to start.But last year, I finally did it as my inspirational hobby.

How does blogging and connecting to other bloggers change/ help you?

Having a great circle of friends and fellow Bloggers who shares the same interest as you is very important. You write for the purpose that your work will be read by someone else, that is why I always admire responsible blogging.When somebody comments on my posts either negatively or sharing inputs, it encourage and inspires me to write better. Feed backs are great tools for improvement and reading other’s work is a way for me to learn and know people. Before, I am not very active in social media, not until I start Blogging where in I have learned to use the internet to  connect with quality people. As an Expat, I have met wonderful friends here that are totally more appealing than the friends that I had in my real life.

What are your favorite topics to write about?

I love to write about my Expat life, my experiences living in a foreign country and being a new mother. I love sharing my  photography stories as well. Lately, I am incorporating my  personal art in my Blog.

In which country do you see yourself living in ten years?

Hmm, I don’t know really. Right now, my daughter is  only 2  and is on crucial stage of development, soon she’ll start Kindergarten and I really wanted her to develop her German language and moving again means another change for her. We’ve just been here in Germany for only 7 months,  and still too early to say, but then, we love it here and looking forward for more. It is my goal to learn Deutsch as well.So options are limitless.

Couch or Sports?

Definitely sports. My metabolism is quick so I wanted to be active always.

A good Book or TV?

A good book.

What would you do with 1 Million Euros (or Dollars, whatever you prefer…)

A million Kuwaiti Dinar so the value is higher ! I’ve always wanted to travel with my mother or maybe invest in my personal business.

How long do you prepare for a blog post?

It depends. Sometimes I only do photo challenges which are quick to do.I can only sit behind my laptop on my free times, maybe 2 hours in a day or if I’m not so tired at night I make some drafts, also depends on my mood.

Your worst experience with blogging.

None so far. I never experience yet anything I could call as worst.

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One of my artwork- Faces in the Crowd

What is your hobby with which you find some peace?

Nature-tripping, my wandertags and painting. I also find peace while baking.

Last but not least: Would you ever dare to try Surströmming?

Nie! No, thanks but I’m not a fan of fermented fish. I also don’t like  the Dutch Herring.

Here’s are the list of Bloggers and their Blog that I nominated for Liebster award and I personally recommend to check out their page because they wrote amazing contents!

Debra of Cultivating Time, my inspiration for wellness.

ExpatPanda who is currently based in Kuwait and sharing adventures in & out of the classroom.

Sheryl of Thoughts of Sheryl- a fellow Pinay in an interracial marriage in Korea

Estelea of Frenchtouchincebu– The Yogi beauty practicing Namaste in Philippines with her adorable Atillas.

The Berlinbook – A fellow Pinay integrating into German culture and writing about her Expat life.

Ann of Grubbsncritters– A trailblazing Expat Mama in the Netherlands who can make the best Bitterballen and other grubbs!

Michelle of Rabbitpatchdiary.com – The warm soul behind my dream homestead-Rabbitpatch.

My  11 Questions for you :

  1. What is your definition of responsible blogging?
  2. If given a chance, would you meet a fellow blogger or attend  Blogger meet- ups?
  3. What is your favorite post? and why. Please provide a link.
  4. What do you want to accomplish in your Blog for this year?
  5. What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done in your life?
  6. If you would write a story about one famous person, who would it be & why?
  7. What is your dream job?
  8. Do you think your mother /father would be proud to read your Blog?
  9. What is your most prized personal possession?
  10. How many languages you speak?
  11. What is your guilty pleasure?

 

If you have been nominated for The Liebster Award and you choose to accept it, here are the simple rules;

  1. Display the award on your blog and write a post about the award.
  2. Thank the person who nominated you and post a link to their blog.  Tell the reader a little about your nominator.
  3. Answer the 11 questions given to you by the blogger who nominated you.
  4. Nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award.
  5. Give the nominees 11 questions to answer on their blog.
  6. List these rules in your post.
  7. Notify the nominees of the Liebster Award and ask if they would be happy to accept? If so, send them a link to your post.

I have received other Blog awards such as the Versatile Blogger Awards from Pooja of Lostinprettyeurope and Lucas of ldpfotoblog, some I have forgotten already, so many things to do. I wanted to thank you all for thinking of my Blog worthy of these awards. These kind gestures are never wasted. Thank you so much guys!

P.S.I don’t declare my Blog as Free-Blog awards but I will do my best to respond once I got the time.