New Year’s Blogging

So I keep getting this voice in my head that continuously reminds me that I haven’t blogged in almost a year. And the last time I posted something was about how I was going to start posting more often since I had been slacking. Well, you all can understand how life gets in the way and how some of us tend to put things off until we “find the time,” but I’m tired of making excuses so here we go.

With nearly fifteen minutes left in 2013, I wanted to post something committing to making a promise. I didn’t want to wait until next year to start anew because I wanted to end this year and begin the next one on a positive note. I will blog more throughout this upcoming year. There. I said it and now it’s published for the WordPress world to see.

This past year has been a great one, and I can’t exclaim how fortunate I have been throughout 2013. With another year soon to be in the past and a new one arriving shortly, I think it’s safe to say that 2014 is going to be a year filled with love, happiness, blessings, and incredible opportunities for each and every one of us. I hope you all have a great evening enjoying the remnants of 2013 and welcoming in the start of a New Year, and remember, it’s never too late to make any kind of resolution (Says my guilty conscience from not blogging enough this past year). Happy New Year to each of you and I can’t wait to share it with you all.

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My One Year Blogaversary

Now that I’m back from my spring break cruise to the Bahamas, I no longer have a an excuse to not blog. So here we are, with this hopefully being the first of many steady posts to come. As you can tell, its been a while since I blogged consecutively, so there’s definitely a lot of ground for us to cover so I can catch you up on everything. On January 20th, I celebrated my one year blogaversary. I received a notification saying it was my one year anniversary of my Hurdles to Happiness blog, but since I had taken a break from blogging, I smiled and left it at that. I didn’t arrange for any festivities, I didn’t post anything about it, nor did I invite my fellow bloggers to celebrate with me. But everyone loves a good celebration, and with you all by my side, there’s no one else I would rather celebrate with.

I’ll get to the celebration part of this post soon, but first, I’d like to go back one year and a month and a half (right before I started this blog and joined the blogging community). As most of you know, I wrote a Self-Help book for teenagers a while back and attended the Writer’s Digest Conference last January to pitch my book to notable literary agents. Something that each agent mentioned to me was the fact that I can’t become an author and publish a book if I don’t have a platform of followers. Their suggestion was join the world of social networking and become an avid blogger and tweeter. “Wow,” I thought to myself. “What could I possibly have to blog or tweet about that would hopefully be of interest to others?” This question stayed in my mind for quite some time, but I figured I’d have to give it a shot if I wanted to build up a platform with hopes of one day becoming an author. So I began posting about my writing process that involved everything pertaining to my book. Then I figured I’d throw some poetry into my blog and put in some poems that I had written a while back, and hopefully come up with ideas for new poems. And then it hit me. I also want to work on helping others as well as myself down the path towards achieving happiness. If that’s what my book is about, that’s what the majority of my blog should be about to.

A little inspiration goes a long way and I was truly hoping to help inspire any and all followers that would be joining me on the blogging path to Happiness. Little did I realize though, that within a year I would receive more followers than I could ever imagine and that my fellow bloggers would be the ones inspiring me. You have all inspired me through your blog posts, comments on my posts, pushes to continue writing, and especially through your encouragement and motivation to not only make me a better person and writer, but a better blogger as well. And to be quite honest, that is more than anything I could have ever imagined or asked for, and for that, on this one year (and almost two month) blogaversary I’d like to invite all of my fellow bloggers to comment on this post with links to your blogs. I would like for all of my followers to connect with one another and have a door opened to new blogs for you all to enjoy. So please, I ask that you help me celebrate my blogaversary by posting the link to your blogs for others to follow. I can’t think of a better way for me to celebrate my one year blogaversary than with all of you on this one year anniversary post. And with that, I’d like to make a toast to my fellow bloggers for helping me make it this far and for welcoming me with open arms into the world of blogging, and I hope together, we all have many years of blogging to come!

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Getting Back Into The Swing Of Things

It has been quite some time since I consistently posted here on WordPress. I can use the excuses of having been busy with classes, finals, the daily stressors that use up our focus and energy, or I could just pick one out of a hat, because believe me, there are plenty of excuses I’ve been holding onto.  However, in the scheme of things, I don’t really have a legitimate excuse to not have been blogging, except for the fact that I was tired. Since my return from Spain in August, I no longer had exciting adventures to share. Any and all progress made with my book had come to a standstill, so I hid from writing. I avoided it at all costs and tried to put my focus anywhere else that I could. However, in the end, for us bloggers and writers, there is no avoiding writing so here I am, facing my fear and returning to the blogging world. There is a lot to talk about since my absence so I hope you’re prepared. Not to mention, I hope I’m prepared too. And within the next few weeks, I will be working on independent publishing so that I can finally accomplish the goal of publishing my book. This is where I would insert the saying, “Here goes nothing,” but I’d like to rephrase that into a more positive one. There is no harm in trying to accomplish your goals, for regardless of how successful you think you may or not be, you’ll always be successful for having known that you did what you set out to do. So as I was saying, “Here goes something.”

Reader Appreciation Award

Reader Appreciation Award:

I was recently nominated for the Reader Appreciation Award by the amazing Rev. Whitfield. Her blog http://crustybreadblog.com/ is one that I recently came across and began following, and I am extremely glad that I did! I would highly encourage everyone to check out her blog because it has such great content that is beyond enjoyable. Thanks again for this prestigious award Rev. Whitfield! :)

Now the rules for accepting this award are as follows:

  • Add a picture of the award to your blog post.
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and include a link to their blog.
  • Nominate 5-10 other Bloggers and inform those selected that they have been nominated.

The following bloggers are ones who definitely have my appreciation for either supporting my blog and/or for the great content on their blogs as well! Congratulations everyone!

Here are the nominations:

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award

A short while ago I was nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award, but somehow didn’t come across the comment nominating me until a few days ago. Better late than never, especially when it comes to exciting awards! I was nominated for this awesome award by Sahbina from http://sahbinahvioletflynn.wordpress.com/. Her blog is truly amazing, so I would strongly recommend checking it out!

We all have goals in life and all want to achieve nothing but the best for ourselves. Have you ever asked yourself what the goal of your blog is? I’m assuming you have since you’re successfully blogging here on WordPress, but once in a while it’s nice to think about the what the purpose of our actions is. Let me tell you why I blog. There are quite a few reasons here, so bare with me. I blog to make people happy;  I blog to entertain my followers; I blog to keep tabs on trips that I have taken and remember what I did on those trips; I blog so that other people can take these trips with me from the comfort of their own home; I blog to help people overcome obstacles they may be facing on a daily basis; I blog to remind people what is important in life and to remind each of us (myself included) of important lessons that we sometimes forget; I blog to help myself out on a daily basis; I blog to help others out on a daily basis; I blog to inspire myself; and I blog to inspire others.

If you can make a positive impact on someone’s day, then you have done something really good. If you can help improve someone’s week, then you have done something great. If you have made a difference in someone’s life for the better, then you have done something incredible. I blog to try to make a positive impact in my follower’s lives on a daily basis and as a whole, in general. If I am able to make this difference on just one person (even if it’s myself), then I will be content in knowing that I fulfilled my goal. But I don’t want to stop at just impacting one person’s day and/or life. I want to keep going. So I will keep on blogging and keep on trying to inspire. (Maybe I took this post a little too seriously, but a little catharsis never hurt anyone). But again, special thanks to Sahbina for making a positive impact on my day with the nomination of this award :)

Now for the RULES to follow when nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award:

  1. Display the award logo on your blog.
  2. Link back to the person who nominated you.
  3. State 7 things about yourself.
  4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them.
  5. Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements.

Seven Things About Me:

  1. I am the youngest of three kids (I have an older brother and sister)
  2. We have three dogs at home (one to replace each of us when we left our house for college)
  3. I intern for a local college entertainment-oriented magazine in the Orlando area
  4. While using the bathroom in a moving train last week, I had a sudden burst of inspiration and came up with the following quote. “Life is like using the bathroom in a moving vehicle. You can come out with lots of accomplishments or lots of regrets”
  5. I use Twitter to promote my blog and at times to reach out to friends and fellow Twitter followers. I try not to use it too much to give updates on my location (minus traveling) because I don’t think people want to know when I’m eating dinner or when I’m going to the bathroom
  6. I have self-diagnosed OCD in general, but more specifically, I can’t finish brushing my teeth until I brush each “section” for a certain amount of time. Also, after a certain amount of time since previous haircuts, I have to get another haircut or else I’ll start to get jittery (It’s not easy thinking of facts about yourself, so sometimes you have to dig deep)
  7. Seven is actually my favorite number

My Nominations for the Very Inspiring Blog Award:

My whole blogging experience wouldn’t be the same without my followers as well as the blogs that I follow. There are always new blogs that catch my attention and there is no way of showing that I appreciate their work more than nominating them with a gratifying award such as this. Thank you to the following blogs for inspiring me and making a difference in my everyday life!

  1. http://2bewell.wordpress.com/
  2. http://nomadgrad.com/
  3.  http://alarnarosegray.wordpress.com/
  4.  http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/
  5. http://noholdsbarredribataylor.wordpress.com/
  6. http://worldismycuttlefish.wordpress.com/
  7. http://travelerslounge.wordpress.com/
  8. http://pczick.wordpress.com/
  9. http://bamskitchen.com/
  10. http://justanotherwakeupcall.wordpress.com/
  11. http://sued51too.wordpress.com/
  12. http://adventuresofacarryon.com/
  13. http://hutchagoodlife.wordpress.com/
  14. http://lifebyphoto.wordpress.com/
  15. http://milenanik3.wordpress.com/

Illuminating Blogger Award

Illuminating Blogger Award

There is nothing better than coming back from a weekend trip to find that you have been nominated for an award, praising your blog. I would like to thank Ingrid from http://MySpanishTranslator.Wordpress.com/ for this amazing nomination. Her blog is truly incredible, seeing as she helps her followers learn the Spanish language, all for free! And as someone currently studying abroad in Spain, improving my Spanish and free are two things I love hearing. So again, special thanks to Ingrid for the nomination, and for being an Illuminating Blogger :)

The rules of the Illuminating Blogger Award are as follows:

  1. The nominee should visit the award site (http://foodstoriesblog.com/illuminating-blogger-award/) and leave a comment indicating that they have been nominated and by whom. (This step is so important because it’s the only way that we can create a blogroll of award winners).
  2. The Nominee should thank the person that nominated them by posting & including a link to their blog.
  3. The Nominee should include a courtesy link back to the official award site (http://foodstoriesblog.com/illuminating-blogger-award/) in their blog post.
  4. Share one random thing about yourself in your blog post.
  5. Select at least five other bloggers that you enjoy reading their illuminating, informative posts and nominate them for the award. Many people indicate that they wish they could nominate more so please feel free to nominate all your favorites.
  6. Notify your nominees by leaving a comment on their blog, including a link to the award site (http://foodstoriesblog.com/illuminating-blogger-award/).

My one random fact about myself is that I sometimes consider being a doctor, but always end up changing my mind upon remembering that I’m awful at math and science. So instead, I am considering getting a Mental Health Counseling degree, but considering I still have plenty of time before needing to make any big decisions, we’ll see what happens.

And for my five fellow bloggers, I would like to present you with this award:

1. http://longlifecatsanddogs.wordpress.com/

2. http://sugaredpecan.wordpress.com/

3. http://analyfe.com/

4. http://wordsandherbs.wordpress.com/

5. http://humaninrecovery.wordpress.com/

Congratulations everyone! You deserve it :)

One Lovely Blog Award

ONE LOVELY BLOGGER AWARD:

I recently spent the past few days away from WordPress (well, not completely away since I continued reading posts from fellow bloggers, but wasn’t posting anything, myself) trying to organize myself, my thoughts, but more importantly, take in as much of Spain as possible before this incredible experience comes to an end at the end of next week. So you can imagine, it was really great and encouraging to check out comments on my blog, informing me that I was in fact nominated for the One Lovely Blog Award. I was nominated by http://theblazingtrail.wordpress.com as well as by David from http://barsetshirediaries.wordpress.com. They both have truly amazing blogs, and I would strongly suggest stopping by! And of course, I thank you both for this much appreciated award!!

The rules for the award are as follows:

1. I need to thank the person who nominated me.

2. Share 7 things about myself that you still may not know

3. Nominate 15 bloggers.

4. Notify the nominees that I have done so.

5. Put the logo of the award on my blog site.

About Me:

I’m not too sure what I haven’t already told everyone about myself, so I’ll try my best to dig deep and not have to make anything up.

1. My first name was supposed to be Adam. My mom was in love with the name and planned on having it be my name, but my sister who was 7 years old at the time fought against it. She said there was a kid in her class named Adam who would constantly pick his nose, and begged my mom for a different name. My parents ended up agreeing on Daniel and compromised with my sister which is how I got my middle name, Adam. (Believe it or not, that’s actually not a made-up story)

2. I am currently fulfilling one of my dreams, which has always been to visit Spain and potentially study abroad there, and now I’m actually doing both!

3. I am terrible with directions so I’m usually late to places if my GPS doesn’t come through for me.

4. I am usually late to everything and try to blame my un-timeliness on my lack of directional skills as much as possible.

5. I used to never want to blog or be a part of social media until I attended the Writer’s Digest Conference in January, and was told by various agents that the only way to get your work published is to build a marketing platform and have an audience. I proceeded in making a blog and a twitter account, and (more so with my blog) have come across incredible people, made fellow WordPress friends, found blogs that I cannot stop following, and have been inspired by fellow bloggers to share my stories, because let’s face it: we all have one.

6. I am appreciative to those who follow and scan over my work, but more importantly read it (even if the only person reading is my mom) because it lets me know that just maybe, someone can learn something from me.

7. I gave up eating pork this past January for religious purposes. You see, I used to eat pepperoni pizza a lot and was a huge fan of bacon and salami, but refused to eat ham and sausages because that was part of the no pork rule that my religion follows. So after a trip to Israel in the end of December, I decided to follow the rule all the way and permanently gave up pork and the mixing of meat and dairy products. (Saying goodbye to cheeseburgers has been the hardest part though, incase anyone was wondering).

Since I was nominated for the Lovely Blog Award twice, both times within a few days of each other, I decided to double the amount of people I could nominate. So I guess this is what it feels like to break the rules. From cooking to inspiration, comedic relief to serious topics, and traveling across the world or to your backyard, there are a lot of award-worthy blogs that I have been coming across in recent days/weeks, but just to name a few:

  1. http://ahealingpath.wordpress.com/
  2. http://bardessdmdenton.wordpress.com/
  3. http://southwestadventurer.com/
  4. http://suedreamwalker.wordpress.com/
  5. http://resilientheart.wordpress.com/
  6. http://reconstructingchristina.wordpress.com/
  7. http://mysmallstillvoice.wordpress.com/
  8. http://17andbaking.com/
  9. http://danishexchange.wordpress.com/
  10. http://lookingatthewest.com/
  11. http://augustomachadoneto.wordpress.com/
  12. http://memomuse.wordpress.com/
  13. http://bahbs.wordpress.com/
  14. http://ironwoodwind.wordpress.com/
  15. http://betigaklaten.wordpress.com/
  16. http://liliessparrowsandgrass.wordpress.com/
  17. http://quirkybooks.wordpress.com/
  18. http://selfblossoming.wordpress.com/
  19. http://sweetnscrappy.com/
  20. http://wise1coaching.wordpress.com/
  21. http://themariaantoinette.wordpress.com/
  22. http://amaanjourney.com/
  23. http://thecardigantales.wordpress.com/
  24. http://maxiscomments.com/
  25. http://hilarishappenings.wordpress.com/
  26. http://carefreecomposition.com/
  27. http://malouprestado.com/
  28. http://origamiraven.wordpress.com 
  29. http://thetroublewithtwentytwo.wordpress.com/  
  30. http://write4you.org/ 
  31. http://gonetoswantravel.com/ 
  32. http://theyummyzone.wordpress.com/
  33. http://pavloskapralos.wordpress.com/
  34. http://natashamontoya89.wordpress.com/
  35. http://juliehansenintuitive.com/
  36. http://workthedream.wordpress.com/
  37. http://packgolive.wordpress.com/
  38. http://walkswithyogi.wordpress.com/
  39. http://thewhyaboutthis.com/
  40. http://studyabroad.joshuascriven.com/
  41. http://50yearproject.wordpress.com/
  42. http://novicejournal.wordpress.com/
  43. http://photoscience.wordpress.com/
  44. http://toddlohenry.com/
  45. http://faitaccompli.wordpress.com/

Congratulations to the above bloggers! This award is much deserved, and I look forward to continue reading your lovely blogs :) (see what I did there?). All best, Dan