Did you hear? I’m stylish.

This morning, Charles Gulotta of Mostly Bright Ideas nominated me for the coveted Stylish Blogger Award. No one has ever called me stylish. [Stop snickering, Mom!] It’s understandable. I live in pajamas most days when I’m at home writing. If I have to leave the house, it’s jeans, boots, and a sweater. Not too exciting, I know. So, imagine my surprise when I got the news. I feel whole now. [sniff] Special. [wipes tear from eye] Stylish for the first time. [sob] In fact, I must change into pajamas that are more appropriate for this occasion.

[snip, snip, snip] There, I’ve cut the back out of my favorite sheep pjs. Backless outfits are always more appropriate for awards ceremonies, don’t you think?

 As Charles mentioned in his post, the award comes with four basic tasks to be completed:

  1. Present seven things about yourself
  2. Name about a half dozen bloggers you think deserve the award
  3. Contact those people
  4. Create a link back to the person who gave you the honor

Here’s seven things you might not know about me:

    1. I think PEZ taste better when eaten from the dispenser rather than from the wrapper.
    2. I have an overly developed sense of smell—a blessing when the flame blows out on a stove but the gas is still pumping, a curse when I get stuck in a cramped train under the armpit of a tall, unwashed man with a passion for Ralph Lauren’s Polo. You all say ugh to that, right? But when your nose is like a bloodhound’s, you find yourself praying for a quick death.
      The first inkling my parents had of my super-sensory condition was in the pig house at the Flushing Meadow Zoo when I started to cry, grabbed my nose, and ran for the door when I hadn’t even learned how to walk yet. I should mention that there had already been some trauma that day when they looked away for a second and I leaned over to pet a cute little goosey. The weight of my giant, toddler bobblehead toppled me head first into the pond. Afraid of water to this day and hating nasty smells. All true.

  1. I despise overly restrictive rules, regulations, practices, and laws that are just plain ridiculous or that don’t take into account individual circumstances. So there!
  2. I love food. I love to eat it, think about it, talk about it, write about it, you name it. I never mind if someone asks me what I’m eating in a restaurant. Great relationships have been struck up with strangers over the back of a diner booth, stopping just short of the exchange of a fluffy, silver-dollar pancake for a bite of a skillet omelet.
    Growing up half Italian, I quickly internalized the message “Food is love.” I have such great memories of meals with my extended Italian family. And past events are easily remembered in the context of what we were eating at the time.
    “Don’t you remember when Zia Anamaria announced that her brother-in-law’s sister’s son’s wife left him to pursue her dream of working at the buffalo mozzarella factory in Gaeta, Italy?”
    “Oh yeah, that was the day Uncle Tutti choked on the string from the braciole.”
    Okay, some of that’s not true.
  3. Nature at once soothes and energizes me and feeds my creativity. My Muse lives outdoors, sipping nectar from trumpet-shaped flowers. If I’m lucky, I catch her with a butterfly net and bring her indoors for a few hours while I work. I thank my grandmother for fostering my fascination with nature. And I am grateful to my parents for taking us on month-long camping trips across North America every summer. There’s no hotel that compares to a sleeping bag in a tent under the stars, in my opinion.
  4.  I am an ENTP on Myers-Briggs, an 8 with a 7 wing on the Enneagram, and a Gemini. Take a look at those descriptions and you’ll know more about me than you ever wanted to.
  5. I am a champion of the underdog. And come to think of it, Underdog was one of my favorite cartoons as a kid.

 I’d like to thank the Academy, um I mean Charles for nominating me. His blog is one of my new favorites. I read his moving post Zabaglione and felt like I’d known him forever. Parts of it were so familiar to me. Give it a read.

Before I list my six nominations, I want to say the list would have been longer but Charles already nominated Jessica Sieghart of Surely, You Jess! Similarly, Val of Absurd Old Bird was nominated earlier in the week. And Richard Lamb of Celluloid Zombie would have eaten my brains if I nominated him, busy as he is with a new job.

Drum roll please. My nominees for the Stylish Blogger Award are:

The Fordeville Diaries – Her tagline reads “On a mission to turn the ordinary into the memorable.” She succeeds with each post. Whether she’s fretting about the ugly wall sconces in her hallway or lamenting the loss of her fingerprints (I kid you not), she always gets a good chuckle out of me.

Girlboxing – This 50-something female boxer manages to inspire me exactly when I’m in need. If you want some motivation to get up offa that thing and get that body moving, but you’re not interested in a drill sergeant-like trainer screaming in your face, make a stop at Girlboxing’s place for some quiet but powerful inspiration.

Julie Compton – This blog reflects the multi-faceted qualities of its owner. Julie is a two-time published author, a devoted mom, a female biker, a Dave Matthews fanatic, and a former practicing lawyer. If her blog is a bit quiet these days, it’s because she’s at work on her third novel. (Shhhhh, writer at work.) I can’t wait for her to finish. Her first novel Tell No Lies is a legal thriller that has been compared to Turow’s Presumed Innocent. In her second novel Rescuing Olivia, also a thriller, “a Florida biker sets out on a search against time to find and save the woman he loves when she mysteriously disappears after a suspicious motorcycle accident.” What I love about Julie’s thrillers is that her characters are deeply developed and her themes really make you think.

Earthquakes and Rattlesnakes – Zahara blogs about life, food, and travel and posts some gorgeous photos of the scenery and wildlife in Northern California. The photo in her recent post “After the Rain” took my breath away.

Huffygirl’s Blog – Huffygirl’s light-hearted musings about wellness and life keep me coming back for more. Her recent posts and photos about winter birds and how to set up a bird buffet in your backyard were of special interest. I love birdies.

Working Tech Mom – Techy has managed to balance a demanding career in the technology industry and family life. Recently downsized, she is blogging about the experience in an honest and upbeat way. That’s what I admire about her so much. I have a feeling her future posts on the topic will become a popular reference guide for job-seekers. You can’t go wrong with Techy leading the way.



  1. jesswords10 said,

    February 5, 2011 at 12:57 am

    Congratulations on the award! I thought of you as stylish. Tea drinkers are so sublime.

    P.S. Tell me everything about Uncle Tutti!

  2. Zahara said,

    February 5, 2011 at 2:09 am

    Bowing down…….I see I’m in good company. Congratulations and Thanks, Stylish One!
    BTW, I was at the library today looking for Spanish tapes to listen to in the car and guess what I found? Destinos!!!!! Muchas Gracias!

  3. Damyanti said,

    February 5, 2011 at 2:15 am

    Came by here from your award at Mostly Bright Ideas—lovely to discover your blog.

    • February 5, 2011 at 9:12 am

      Thank you for stopping by, Damyanti. Very nice to meet you.
      I’m looking forward to reading your writing from picture prompts.

  4. Richard said,

    February 5, 2011 at 4:30 am

    Congratulations on your prestigous and most well deserved award. I’d raise my arms to clap and salute you, but I’m on a cramped train wearing a Ralph Lauren Polo shirt.

    For me, style isn’t about what you wear but how you carry yourself and how you interact with the world around you. That being the case, you have it in spades, Maggie.

    Thanks for not adding to my workload, by the way. But I’m going to eat your brain anyway. 🙂

    • February 5, 2011 at 9:19 am

      The shirt I can deal with–it’s the cologne on unwashed (rotting zombie) flesh that puts me over the edge. LOL.

      I was going to thank you for your kind words, Rich, but then I remembered that you think the two old men who sit in the balcony on the Muppet Show interact well with the world. 😉

      Regarding the blue plate special, there’s not much brain left.

  5. Val Erde said,

    February 5, 2011 at 6:57 am

    Margaret, I’ve got a bone to pick with you… I just went to several of these blogs and went to leave comments on them and do you know what I found? Your comments had the content that I’d wanted to leave. Are we twins or something? Getouttamybrain woman!
    Seriously(ish) though… thanks for the linky and thought. I’m gonna get a mention of this blog of yours into my blog sometime with or without another award. You’d have been in the one I did before but I’m fairly sure (but not certain) that I found you after I posted that.

    Wowzell… all these new blogs! Brill!

    • February 5, 2011 at 9:24 am

      Thanks, Val. I think it would have been pretty funny if you’d left the exact comment–word for word. Really would have messed with the minds of the bloggers. Hee hee.

      Happy Reading!

  6. February 5, 2011 at 7:39 am

    Wonderful to meet you by way of Charles! What do the stars say at the Oscars? Something like, “I am honored to be among such talent and hardly worthy.” This is clearly evident to me after reading this post alone. I just subscribed and look forward to reading more! I am still laughing about the backless pajamas!

    Congratulations on a very well-deserved award, Margaret!

    • February 5, 2011 at 9:32 am

      Thank you, Amiable. I just took a quick look at your blog and discovered how you got the name Amiable Amiable and the title of your blog. That’s hysterical. I like your husband’s quick wit. I’ll be back to read more. Thanks for stopping by.

      • February 5, 2011 at 10:29 pm

        Thank you, Margaret! Yup, my husband is a witty guy. Gotta laugh or you cry – I have a book of his comments that were just a little too quick. The Think-Before-Speaking gene does not exist in his family. I pray that my children got it from my side! 😉

  7. Blockader said,

    February 5, 2011 at 8:12 am

    Sitting in the audience listening to your acceptance speech I smile, then as you finish I tuck my Freshly Pressed award statuette under my arm, rise from my seat and give you a standing ovation.

  8. February 5, 2011 at 9:35 am

    Thanks for blog recs. I follow Zahara. She is delightful. PS Gemini Italians Rule(June 18)

  9. February 5, 2011 at 10:35 am

    That superpower sense of smell has to be a double-edged sword, especially since it seems much more likely to run into Polo wearers than for the pilot light to go out. My sense of smell isn’t as great as yours, but your description reminded me of the boys in high school dousing themselves in Drakkar Noir after gym class. Not good!

    You and I are #3 twins. I have a feeling that’s because not only am I a Gemini, too, I believe that if I took the Meyers-Briggs, I’d get ENTP. Thank you so much for the mention! I can’t wait to rear the blogs on your list.

    • February 5, 2011 at 1:53 pm

      I liked Drakkar Noir in college. Sometimes I’d even dab a bit on, preferring men’s clean scents to women’s overly perfumey ones. Nowadays, I can’t handle any of it. I’m tempted to suit up in scuba gear whenever I go to the mall (which is rare) to protect myself from the perfume sprayers in the department store and the artificial scents floating out of the Yankee Candle shop. My eyes burn, my throat burns, my nose runs. Ugh! I’m a mess.

  10. February 5, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    I would like to say congrats!! 🙂 I will second Zahara and Techy’s nominations! I rather enjoy your honesty and soul-ful post Miss Margaret! (by the way I just love your name!)
    CatMan, The Rose Bandit!

    • February 5, 2011 at 4:59 pm

      Thanks, CatMan. The good thing about my name was that I was the only Margaret in school. It was considered a very old-fashioned name in the decade I was born. However, there were several Margarets in my family and, therefore, nicknames were required to keep things easy. By the time I was born, they had cycled through the nicknames and the full Margaret was now available for use. Lucky me. 😉

      • February 5, 2011 at 5:01 pm

        I am a Catherine by birth and a Catie by name I totally understand! xoxo my beautiful Margaret!

    • February 5, 2011 at 5:24 pm

      I like the Catie with a “C.” It’s different. I like different. 🙂

  11. fordeville said,

    February 5, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    Aw, thanks! My first (and very likely, last) bloggish award. I’m having a Sally Field moment 🙂

    I’m anxious to check out the others you mentioned. Off to read them now…

  12. bronxboy55 said,

    February 5, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    I was happily stunned that you mentioned PEZ. Not only did you mention it, you made it your number one item! I love PEZ, but never learned how to load the candy into the dispenser. Did you? It always seemed that you’d need three hands to do it properly. I spent a good part of my childhood picking PEZ up off the floor. And now I’ve used up my allotted comment time talking about nothing but PEZ. I just want to say I love your blog!

    Oh, and I hate pumpkin pie!

    • February 5, 2011 at 9:05 pm

      I agree the loading of the candy is a bit tricky. Most kids probably never master it. The trick is to leave the candy mostly wrapped. Then you kind of squeeze the head of the PEZ dispenser between your knees, extend the rest of it and plop the candy in. I think I may have to do a YouTube video on this. That would be the highlight of my technical writing career, don’t you think?

      You hate pumpkin pie??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? 😉 Sorry, couldn’t resist.

      • bronxboy55 said,

        February 7, 2011 at 9:48 am

        I tried the dispenser between the knees technique once, and I’m never doing that again. I’d love to watch the video, though.

        Do you realize those question marks have crossed over into the green area? It’s like they’ve entered another dimension. I may start eating pumpkin pie, just so you don’t hurt yourself.

      • February 7, 2011 at 9:11 pm

        That would be a truly selfless thing to do. Thanks, Charles.

  13. frizztext said,

    February 6, 2011 at 1:06 am

    No one has ever called me stylish. It’s understandable. I live in pajamas most days when I’m at home writing… – said with humor …

  14. February 6, 2011 at 8:04 am

    I have a bionic nose. So I know the terror you feel when traveling in crowded public places. Plain-nosed people just can’t relate. I am the person who will ask you what you have to eat at the restaurant. My children hide from me in these moments, but I’ve made friends in these moments, honest engine.

    When you got to the part about nature…I got a little weepy almost, because I could have written that part. I rafted the Grand Canyon a bit ago and I barely slept because the nights under the full moon just laying there on the sand with those tall canyon walls hugging me…well, it is not hypberbolic to say it changed me.

    Backless jammies sounds like great flair for the Oscars.

    • February 6, 2011 at 9:24 am

      Does your nose make that “eh eh eh eh eh eh” sound when it goes into bionic mode? 😉

      That Grand Canyon trip sounds amazing. I was there as a kid, so there were no rafting trips. But I was moved by the scenery.

  15. suzicate said,

    February 6, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    Pez from the dispenser, food, nature, and pulling for the underdog…love it!

  16. February 7, 2011 at 7:24 am

    It was great to learn a little more about you through this post! My husband has an overly developed sense of smell too… and I think my 5-year old son has inherited it. He can even smell where I’ve hidden the chocolate biscuits! Not cute. Congrats on the award :). K

    • February 7, 2011 at 8:20 am

      Thanks, MBA. Oh no, you’re in trouble…sniffing out the choccie biccies. (Did I type that correctly? We call them cookies in the U.S.) Your son will be a hero to his peers.

  17. Julie said,

    February 7, 2011 at 9:49 am


    I’m humbled and honored to be given a Stylish Blogger Award! I don’t think I’ve ever been told I’m stylish — about anything. 🙂 So this is a real treat!

    As you said, my blog has been quiet, but soon enough I’ll be chattering away again. I finally wrote THE END on the last page of my WIP. There’s still work to be done, but it’s a step in the right direction.

    I think you should have given an award to Cellular Zombie. I’d like to see the YouTube video of him eating your brains . . .

    • February 7, 2011 at 9:17 pm

      Julieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. How are you, my friend? I’m so glad to hear you made it to THE END. I’m looking forward to reading it.

      Celluloid Zombie is so busy with his new career, he doesn’t have time to eat anyone’s brain. 🙂

  18. February 7, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    i luv the myers-briggs as a paradigm to understand others and ourselves. i do know much more about u, true, already just by knowing what an entp is about. and… i like it! keep on.

    • February 7, 2011 at 9:26 pm

      Thanks for stopping by, Sana. I’m very interested in the study of personality. It really does make life easier if you know who you are and if you understand where someone else may be coming from. I say “may” because no typing system is 100%. I’ve studied Myers-Briggs on several occasions. One of those times was at a job site. I think it improved the way we functioned as a team.

  19. girlboxing said,

    February 8, 2011 at 12:12 am

    You are so inspiring! Thanks!

  20. February 12, 2011 at 7:39 am

    […] socks and or earrings at the end of the day.  But my blogger buddy Margaret of Conjuring my Muse https://margaretreyesdempsey.wordpress.com/2011/02/05/did-you-hear-im-stylish/ apparently has not seen me make these style faux pas, as she recently nominated me (along with […]

  21. Melinda said,

    February 13, 2011 at 9:59 am

    A well-deserved award! PJs are trendy and fashionable. I know because I see people wearing them to Walmart. ;). I’m a sweats and t-shirt girl so I understand it’s all about the comfort. lol at PEZ!! If I had a dollar for everytime I loaded those things for the kids. I’m going to check out those blogs because most are new to me.

    • February 13, 2011 at 10:46 am

      I call it my “Vinny the Chin” look. He was a NY gangster who wandered his neighborhood in pajamas and a bathrobe, mumbling incoherently, in an attempt to avoid prosecution. Apparently, the look caught on if Walmart shoppers have adopted it.

  22. huffygirl said,

    February 13, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    Thanks again for the nomination Margaret. Unfortunately I did not follow the directions, but I hope my readers enjoyed the diversion. All great blogs that you nominated BTW.

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