The Sunshine Blogger Award - an honor bestowed by peers


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The sunflower blogger award - inspiration for new bloggersI am so honored at being nominated for The Sunshine Blogger Award.

My blog is not even a year old so I am really pleased. The timing of this award was great too.

As a relatively new blogger, I have been so immersed in the blogging cycle of writing and promoting my posts that I was beginning to be quite stressed by it all.

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A big thank you to Ashley Girres of for nominating me and even thinking me worthy of this honor.

Ashley is truly out of the box. From her home and About pages to her articles, she is truly above and beyond any blogging formula.

Reading Ashley’s articles is like accompanying her on a soul journey.

Her letters to her daughter, Sienna, makes great reading.

Perhaps, something all parents should consider ….. If not regularly, perhaps a letter to mark a birthday …..

Ashley’s other articles all have a unique 2 part structure – bravely, she first relates a personal heartbreaking event from the perspective of a young Ashley.

Then the adult Ashley comments and encourages others who have had similar experiences to summon the courage to seek help in order to heal.

Don’t miss out on a novel encounter. Visit Ashley at a


The Sunshine Blogger award is given by bloggers to bloggers who inspire and motivate with their blogs.

It is an award that showcases new talent and enables blogging friendships to develop especially among the nominees and nominators.

My Sunshine Blogger Award questions from Ashley:

1. What is your greatest inspiration in life?

Today, my inspiration comes from people who show a warrior spirit in all they do.

Examples would be fellow spoonies who do not merely survive from one day to the next but thrive and flourish despite their chronic conditions.

People who challenge the odds even when they are stacked against them.

It took a medical crisis for me to try to grow this streak.

One step in that direction was starting my blog,

2. What prompted you to begin blogging?

I have a chronic illness called Scleroderma which reached a crisis point in 2016.

The precarious nature of my health dictated that I resign from my stressful and demanding job as a high school English teacher.


I was in desperate need of a creative outlet to challenge me mentally. My blog FamilyGrowthLife was born as a result.

3. Have you ever considered transforming your blog into a book?

No, I’m still a baby blogger and am hard at work learning the ins and outs of blogging. So I have not even thought of that avenue at all.

4. Do you do anything else for a living outside of blogging?

No, I do not earn a living as a blogger at present. I hope to in the future when my blog is more successful.

The Sunflower Blogger Award an instant motivation boost5. Who is your favorite blogger?

Without doubt Henneke Dusitermaat of enchanting

I read her articles for the sheer pleasure and joy they bring me. Reading Henneke motivates and inspires me.

I love the powerful simplicity of the language she uses to convey her ideas.

She encourages you to break verbal stereotypes by using sensory diction.

My favorite blog post by her is 99 Strong Verbs to Make Your Content Pop, Fizz and Sparkle.

6. What do you enjoy doing most when you’re not writing?

Reading – I do read for pleasure but I want more than entertainment from a book.

A good book is one that lingers with you long after you’ve read it.

I love books that challenge me on multiple levels – plot line, characters, themes, emotions and most important of all for me is skilled language and imagery. That’s the English teacher in me.

My all-time favorite book is The Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. Based on the Hindu epic The Mahabharata, it takes you on a rollercoaster and you emerge better for having taken the ride.

7. What do you feel has been the most pivotal moment in your life?

Being forced to give up my job and find an alternate ‘occupation’ has been the most pivotal point in my life.

It made me break out of my cocoon and resulted in me starting my blog.

This allowed me to ‘meet’ bloggers from around the world most of whom are so compassionate and generous with their knowledge to new bloggers like me.

As a teacher, I always worked hard, often working at home daily to help my students.

But blogging has taken hard work to a whole new level. The reward is the personal satisfaction of writing an article that impacts others.

I’m pleased to say I’ve had that experience already even though I’m so new to this field.

8. What is your writing routine?

I write best from 7 pm to about 12 pm at night. Through trial and error, I’ve found that to be the best time.

I’m free of all my other responsibilities to focus on my writing then.

I am trying to develop the process advised by more successful bloggers – have an editorial calendar, use batching and time blocking to increase my productivity.

But it is so difficult to cultivate that discipline even though I know it is essential.

9. What has been your greatest life accomplishment?

Well, I count surviving for more than 20 years with a chronic illness as one of them.

But I think my greatest life accomplishment is starting a blog at the age of 58 with no tech skills other than word processing.

That my blog is live and I have readers who are sharing my blog posts on Twitter and Facebook and pinning me on Pinterest is absolutely amazing.

10. What encourages you when you’re feeling discouraged about your progress?

I have two maxims that I repeat daily.
* Rome wasn’t built in a day.

So when a post I’ve poured my heart and soul into is not attracting the attention I want, I remind myself that success takes patience.

* Done is better than perfect

A lifetime of correcting kids errors in their English essays makes me my harshest critic.

I remind myself that I need to write to help and motivate and to avoid the perfection hamster wheel.

11. Which blog entry thus far would you say is your greatest pride?


I wanted to help newbies who were clueless about how to start a blog with no money and no guidance.

I like to think it’s resource a new blogger could use to start a blog successfully.

My nominations for the Sunshine Blogger Award are:

Michelle of 

Han of

Zoe of

Michelle of

Cindy of  

Corrine of

Kate of TheMumConundrum    

Here are the rules if you accept your Sunshine Blogger Award nomination:
You need to write a post in which you:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger Award and links back to their blog

2. Answer the questions set by the person who nominated you.

3. Nominate 11 other blogs and give them 11 questions to answer.

4. List the rules and exhibit the Sunshine Blogger Award Logo in your post. 

Remember to notify the bloggers you’ve nominated via social media.

My questions for my Sunshine Blogger Award nominees are:
1. Why did you start your blog?
2. How do you spend your time when you’re not blogging?
3. What is your biggest blogging challenge at the moment?
4. Name a blogger who inspires you and explain how he/she inspires you.
5. Name a blog post that had a great impact on your blogging process.
6. What has been your greatest blogging achievement so far?
7. What advice would you give to someone who wants to start a blog?
8. Describe your writing process.
9. What are your goals for your blog by March 2019?
10. Where do you source topics for your blog posts
11. How has blogging impacted your life?

Blogging so far has been an awesome journey. It is still incredible that a newbie like me has been nominated for this award.

To my nominees, happy blogging. Please tag me on Twitter at @Pather009 so I can read your responses.

The Sunshine Blogger Award - an honor bestowed by peersYOUR TURN

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A former English teacher turned lifestyle blogger. Content creator for blogs and websites. Book lover, scrabble addict and crime show obsessor.


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