Bolt from the Blue: The Encouraging Thunder Award

A couple weeks ago I woke up to a shock in the email box: That Girl at (Not) Another Lupus Blog nominated me for the Encouraging Thunder award, which is meant to recognize blogs that are inspiring and encouraging to their readers. Say, what? I have to say that of the many blogs and comments out there, one of the best, funniest, and uplifting to me is the one that That Girl writes. She is dealing with serious autoimmune diseases that continually derail her life, and she makes me laugh out loud while she relates the latest adventure/disaster. Check out this post about a particularly bad time waiting for her meds to arrive in the mail and you’ll see what I mean. Her blog empowers me to face down whatever may come my way and to deal with my health adventures with grace and humor. She does inspire me. She makes me laugh. She says nice things about my knitting. If ever there was a person who is encouraging, it is her.


I am stunned that she passed the award on to me too. Wow. She is a tough act to follow. It is also kind of weird to think that somehow, typing out into the void about my life with cats, yarn and scleroderma, things that I think about and create connect with other people. Thank you That Girl for thinking of me. It’s an honor to accept and pass the torch (thunderbolt) on to others.

So, this is how the award works: I am supposed to talk about why I blog. That Girl used the opportunity in her post to re-examine her purpose in blogging. Here is her wonderful and reflective post. As I read her thoughts it pushed me into some reflection of my own. There has been a lot of water under the bridge since the start of the blog, and I guess as I changed over time I didn’t really think about this too much.

Here’s the deal: I started to blog because I was going through a tough time and I was isolated. My family was in crisis. I had just retired from the best job in the whole world and was in grief over the loss of my biology classroom. The transition was especially hard since I was going from an adrenalin-charged, immensely creative and social day (hello: 150 high school kiddos a day! Did I mention that it was a lab class…) to one at home with yarn and the cats. I was already sick but not yet diagnosed; it was hard to know if the disconnected symptoms, fatigue, and pain were real or me just feeling sorry for myself. I began to pour my creative energies into knitting and writing; I started the blog to put my transition into retirement out into the digital world; maybe there would be some people who shared my interests. Then the diagnosis of systemic sclerosis (and Sjogren’s) came in and I decided to share some of that. What a wonderful idea it was. Now people reach back to me and make me stronger. Thank you to everyone who has read this far down the post. You are the reason why I blog. You make me more creative (and brave) as you share your crafting adventures, your cats/dogs, your gardens, disasters, and medical adventures.

Thank you again That Girl. You made me think about all of this and I think that I’m ready to blog on!

And now it’s time for to pay it forward. Here are some bloggers who given me inspiration and encouraged me to knit on no matter what.

  1. Sharon at Creativity and Family. This woman is the motherlode of creative inspiration. I don’t think that there is a craft she doesn’t take on. She has a button collection!! There are yummy recipes on occasion, and her kids seem amazing. They have monthly presents. Oh, yeah, she also has lupus and some physical limitations but you have to be very alert to pick up on this because she absolutely refuses to let it define her. She is kind of my hero! Check her out.
  2. Phil at The Twisted Yarn. OK, I’m just going to come out and say it: she totally intimidates me. She has such a fun and unique voice. She takes us to all things yarn and on trips through the countryside with the toddler twinage. She creates amazing projects that I never would have thought of like a Mandala and a knitted pigeon. Reading her posts made me think about my “voice”, but in the presence of quirky greatness it is best to not try to compete.
  3. Lisa at Comfortable in Thick Skin. What can I say? She is a scleroderma warrior. She makes me think that I should be more brave and proactive with everything in my life.
  4. Gaye at Confessions of a YarnHo. She just moved the blog into a new home that is a beautiful professional site. She loves yarn, she is full of joy, she will make your day. The end of every post is “Knit on my fiber friends… knit on” How encouraging can you be.

If I nominated you and you choose to accept, here are the fiddly rules:

When you get this award, you can:

  • Post it and the logo on your blog
  • Pay it forward by nominating others

You cannot:

  • Abuse or misuse the logo
  • Claim the logo is your own

If you receive the award you should:

  • Give thanks via comments and likes in the blog of the person nominating you
  • Mention the person who nominated you in your award blog
  • Discuss your purpose in blogging in your award blog

That’s all folks. If you are reading this That Girl, thanks for the award, and thanks even more for your presence in my blogging life.



Author: Midnight Knitter

I weave, knit and read in Aurora, Colorado where my garden lives. I have 2 sons, a knitting daughter-in-law, a grandson and two exceptionally spoiled kittens. In 2014 I was diagnosed with a serious rare autoimmune disease called systemic sclerosis along with Sjogren's Disease and fibromyalgia.

12 thoughts on “Bolt from the Blue: The Encouraging Thunder Award”

  1. Thank you so much for nominating me. I feel so humbled that you should find my blog inspiring. You have said such lovely things about me that I a blushing right now. I am just so glad if I am able through my blog to give a little back as you and so many others inspire me so much! x

  2. This is so Awesome!! Thank you for nominating me. I still learning in the world of blogging so this means a lot to me. I too began knitting when I was in a dark place. Thank God for the outlet.

    1. You are so welcome; you deserve it!! There is nothing like the Zen of Knitting! It takes you to a better place at the same time you are producing something that is beautiful and useful. And besides, cashmere!

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