I realized it didn’t state a date the blog will terminate which is this Friday November 22, 2019 which ends seven (7) years as my first blog post ever was November 23, 2012. That is a significant time of dedication and I don’t regret having the blog as a place to write about life, lessons learned, good times, difficult times and topics, decor, quotes, prayers, and as I said many times “A Little of This and a Lot of That”.
I realized my style of blogging is not the most attractive revenue generating genre and even my readers must have been trying to tell me the direction I should go to produce enough revenue to keep the blog’s costs paid. To prove this point, I was curious as to which blog posts was seen and viewed the most. Before I came to wordpress.com, the post Squash Pie was popular but the one that outshone the others on the previous platform was Haste Makes Waste. On this platform, Power Up with Power Air Fryer Oven is the winner. Viewed over 1254 views, it is a good hint, commercialism is the direction for a money making blog should go.
I thought about it, thought about it some more, and I realize I am probably an old soul with a young heart. I love writing about those special times in my life which weren’t always happy times, but they were times of bonding, learning, teaching, and also forgiving, myself included. This is why my genre of blogging is probably outdated and this was a large part of my decision to move on to other things or at least say, this has been fun and it has been real.
I don’t do any of this to discourage any new bloggers…..Seven Years of blogging is a lot of keystrokes so I say Go For It! If you have something to give, something to help, something to teach, and even if it is commercialized, this blogger wishes you the best.
Remember, the blog will still be open until the 22nd, so if there are old blog posts you wish to read again, or even if you are ready to say goodbye too….You are greatly appreciated.
(C) Copyright 2012-2019 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced, if known, to the original location for credit references.
SIGH!! After 7 (seven) years of blogging about almost any subject and theme, I have decided to discontinue my blog. I thank everyone who has read the blog, but with the cost of renewing and my time constraints, I made the decision I have other interests I need to pursue. Most bloggers are in it for the money, and that has never been my focus, which is a good thing because it has been rewarded through comments from people over the world and some good folks right here in the USA.
I will archive my posts and content for posterity and I sincerely hope one or more posts have reached your hearts and spurred your minds to think a little outside the box.
To each of you, I encourage you to find your dream, live your dream, and be your dream.
Until We Read Again,
Arline Miller, blogger and author
Sipping Cups of Inspiration
(C) Copyright 2012-2019 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material, if known, is sourced to original location for credit reference.
Wednesday Morning Thought: Someone asked me to join a Christmas Central Group. I did and there are a lot of ideas and people displaying their preferences on decorating for the Christmas holiday. While I was looking at some of the photos and remarks, I had a deeper thought about life. Sometimes, we all agree that something or someone is pretty. Sometimes, we don’t and we have very different ideas. Cooking is the same. Sometimes, everyone will like a certain dish someone cooks, but other times, there are debates on who makes a dish better. Preferences! My thought was one which God makes us unique and as perceptions and preferences may differ, we are designed to think for ourselves, make the best decisions for our individual lives. People generally want to mold others into carbon copies of themselves, but that is not how the world works. As long as we respect others and allow them to make up their minds for themselves, we should have the same right. So, Sally makes the best coconut cake according to all who know her, the ones who know Janie would beg to differ, and on and on. It is not necessary to agree on everything even if the one who has a different opinion as you do is the one who you love the most in the world. If everyone could perform as good as the next person, we would never be recognized as a leader or gain an award. Uniqueness is a specialty in itself and must be recognized as a gift from above. Let us agree to disagree, but agree to love all! Until We Read Again…Arline Miller, author and blogger
I posted the photos from the book signing, which was fantastic and all of us had a great time. One of my friends who I have known for a long time, but have become closer on social media and she is such a wonderful person and supporter of my writing commented that I was a leftie. It revealed that even though we share wonderful thoughts and times, there are things about others we either don’t know or have recognized. I loved that she noticed there is something different about me and all of us can learn more about our friends.
My thought for Beg To Differ? is discover new things. Life has more mysteries than we ever can solve but learning and attempting to solve mysteries is the key for all of us to hold in our hands and in our hearts. LIVE LIFE, LOVE LIFE, AND LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST by LIVING IT UP!
I am posting the names of my novels for those who want to live it up with some page turning reading. 5 Star Reviews and a promise from yours truly to keep you in love’s suspense.
(C) COPYRIGHT 2012-2019 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third Party Material is sourced, if known, to original location for credit reference.
Tomorrow is my first book signing/release of the third and final novel in my series Reflections of Love titled Riddle Me This, Love or Bliss. I thought I would share some of my pre-book signing thoughts with you. Hopefully some young authors will read these as it will steady the keystroke nerves.
I will start by saying when I wrote the first novel, A Mistress, A Wife I had no objectives other than to test my writing skills, and fulfill a young dream of mine when I said “One day, I will write a book.” My first one took years until I decided either to stop writing or get serious about finishing it. Did I know anything about publishing a book? No, nothing but I can google with the best. I had friends who I trusted to read my manuscript and encourage me with one exception, who thought I should stick to blogging. I listened to everyone and then….I trusted my gut. I self-published after finding an editing service. It cost to publish but hey, I had my first novel out.
My first novel produced 5 Star reviews and encouraged me to continue writing. The second novel, which was a sequel to the first one but made a minor character into the main character and reversal roles. I found this twist intriguing and it set my love of twists and turns to keep the story moving but with a certain page turner development. Now, I could feel the urge to write more and more. The second novel, Tell Me Lies; Love Me Still, produced 5 Star reviews and I was hooked.
I say all of this flattering fluff to get to the nitty gritty of what life has in store for writers. It will test your dedication and ability to reach really deep and find out what you are about. To complete the series, the third novel, Riddle Me This, Love or Bliss became a necessity. It wasn’t for any money or fame. It was for me, as an author to “tell the story” and it was very trying to get it written. I continue to work full time and I only write early, or after work and weekends. Curves from everyday life came almost simultaneously and several times, I put my laptop down and said, “Maybe, it is not meant for me to finish it.” Are you wondering what happened to get me serious and finishing this wonderful completion of the story? My birthday, yes, my birthday clenched the completion. I thought I am turning 70, a young version of 70, but man oh man, it was knocking at my writer’s door and it was evident if I didn’t finish this one when I was approaching this milestone, I wouldn’t write any more and that would not be my personality. I have never quit a job before I finished. I never gave up. I wouldn’t give up now.
The deeper thought: This is for any new writers more than my other readers. It applies, however, to all of us in life. Nothing worth doing is going to be easy. It will test your patience and endurance. Remember, “Does The Journey Ever End?” I have so many new readers buying the set of the three books and this one is making 5 Stars with the initial reviews too. If you are serious, the third time may be a charm, applies to a lot of endeavors in life. I am smiling as it must be very relevant to me. I am on my third book and very happily married to my third husband. Maybe, it takes me longer to get it right. Until We Read Again….Arline Miller, Author and Blogger
I want to give a shout out to some great people to work with if you are an Indie Publisher:
A few years ago, I wrote this post and this morning after a weekend of preparation for my upcoming book signing, I woke up with a big case of the Can’t Help Its. I had to find this post but thought it would spark me a little. It is Monday, a work day and the countdown week for the exciting event. Do you ever have to fight against the Can’t Help Its?
TODAY THE WORDS are THE CAN’T HELP ITS. Oh, my country gal side is coming out this morning, so hang on for a good ole country post. How many of you know what I am talking about when I write, “THE CAN’T HELP ITS”? Most of us who live in the South know what it means and I am not sure if this phrase is multi- regional or not. What I can say is the can’t help its has gotten its grip on me this morning.
Maybe a southern made up definition of this phrase might help: 1) When you wake up and the covers try to kidnap you by not allowing you to get out of bed. 2) When you go to the bathroom first thing in the morning and you look in the mirror and wonder who is that staring at you; and you hurry back to bed to avoid this intruder. 3) When you wonder if a life on welfare would be really be so bad? 4) When you feel you might make someone mad over something you might say; so you decide to not get up and aggravate anyone. 5) When you are dieting and it would mean you have to weigh if you get out of bed; so you put it off as long as possible. 6) When all other excuses haven’t worked so you figure out this day must be Friday the 13th, You don’t check your calendar just in case it’s not Friday the 14th. Maybe now, you are getting the idea of the power of “THE CANT HELP ITS.” This condition is to be avoided at all costs as it is very contagious and seems to spread very rapidly. It is the same effect as someone yawning in an office; in a few minutes the entire office is not only yawning; they are absolutely ready to fall asleep.
Now for the deeper thought……There is a cure! It is very simple and costs nothing to completely do a reversal for this condition…….GET OUT OF THE BED! Fight the covers and make your way out quickly so they don’t wrap around you again. Recognize that intruder in the mirror and love the fact you have the “natural” look down. Remember every nice thing your job allows you to do such as eat, warm and dry place to stay at night and go to work. Realize someone is going to be mad at something someone says so save someone else from that problem and do it yourself. Hit those scales and laugh; laughter is such good medicine and the evil scale will wonder why you are laughing and not crying. Lastly, even if it is Friday the 13th, they have finished the sequels on that movie and you are not likely to run into Jason so go for it…….LIFE IS WAITING TO GIVE YOU GREAT THINGS AND IT JUST CAN’T HELP ITSELF. FEATURED BIBLE VERSE: 2 Timothy 1:7 ESV / For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.
(c) copyright 2012=2019 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material is sourced, if known, to the original location for credit reference.
This is a previous post but since it is a timely subject, I thought we could use a break from all of the politics and think about simpler times. Please join me for a walk down memory lane or maybe even a hayride….Hmm????
TODAY THE WORD is HAYRIDES. At this time of year with Halloween, Fall Festivals, etc. coming up or maybe it is my hay fever taking me back to my experience of hayrides. I am not sure if hayrides are popular anymore, but in my childhood, I was privy to several and I think every child needs to experience at least one hayride. I thought I would take us on a ride down memory lane and hope that all children can hop on and ride with us.
Usually the hayride coincided with Halloween or fall festivals and were mostly sponsored by local churches. The farmers helped by furnishing the trailer complete with bales of hay, sometimes loose hay for all of us to sit on or fall in which happened quite frequently. The time was set normally to start this ride through the country side at dusk. The objective was to get all of us children excited with a little fear thrown in for good measure. The slow ride accompanied by the sound of the tractor was supplemented by a lot of yelling, a few screams, and the attempted campsite song of broken choruses when the trailer would hit a hole or bump in the road. Oh, it was funny and scary at the same time. Once in a while, someone would fall in the hay, not serious enough to injure, but silly enough to cause laughter and giggling.
The trail would sometimes stop at a cemetery, where church members (adults who were the biggest kids in the world) were hiding behind tall tombstones to scare the daylights out of us. The running started then with the “big kids” laughing their heads off. Everyone was loaded again, and off we would go, laughing and some girls crying since they didn’t see the humor in the scary events in the graveyard.
We have always had candy for the children and love to see the little ones in costumes. I say it is an individual choice to celebrate Halloween or to not celebrate. I have never thought of bad thoughts about this holiday but again, it is not up to me to encourage or discourage others.
This Halloween, don’t just have the best costume and the spookiest decorations on your block—share these sweet facts, too.
Jack-o-lanterns, which originated in Ireland with turnips instead of pumpkins, are based on a legend about a man name Stingy Jack who repeatedly trapped the Devil and only let him go on the condition that Jack would never go to Hell. However, when he died Jack learned that Heaven didn’t really want his soul either after all his devilish dealings, so he was condemned to wander the earth as a ghost for all eternity. His old friend, the Devil, gifted Jack a lump of burning coal, which Jack carried around in a carved-out turnip to light his way. Locals began carving frightening faces into their own gourds to scare off evil spirits such as Jack of the Lantern.
Celtic people believed that during the festival Samhain, which marked the transition to the new year at the end of the harvest and beginning of the winter, spirits walked the Earth. Later, the introduction of All Souls Day on November 2 by Christian missionaries perpetuated the idea of a mingling between the living and the dead around that time.
With all these ghosts wandering around the Earth during Samhain, the Celts had to get creative to avoid being terrorized by evil spirits. To fake out the ghosts, people would don disguises so they would be mistaken for spirits themselves and left alone.
Everyone can agree that free candy is awesome. Beyond that, there’s lots of debate around the origins of trick-or-treating. One theory proposes that during Samhain, Celtic people would leave out food to placate the souls and ghosts and spirits traveling the earth that night. Eventually, people began dressing up as these otherworldly beings in exchange for similar offerings of food and drink.
5. Trick-or-Treating, the Scottish Way
Other researchers speculate that the candy bonanza stems from the Scottish practice of guising, itself a secular version of souling. In the Middle Ages, soulers, children and poor adults, would go to local homes and collect food or money in return for prayers said for the dead on All Souls’ Day. Guisers ditched the prayers in favor of less religious performances like jokes, songs, or other “tricks.”
6. Trick-or-Treating, American-style
Some sources argue that our modern trick-or-treating stems from belsnickling, a tradition in German-American communities where children would dress in costume and then call on their neighbors to see if the adults could guess the identities of the disguised guests. In one version of the practice, the children were rewarded with food or other treats if no one could identify them.
7. Black Cats
The association of black cats and spookiness actually dates all the way back to the Middle Ages, when these dark kitties were considered a symbol of the Devil. It didn’t help the felines’ reputations when, centuries later, accused witches were often found to have cats, especially black ones, as companions. People started believing that the cats were a witch’s “familiar”—animals that gave them an assist with their dark magic—and the two have been linked ever since.
8. Bobbing for Apples
This game traces its origins to a courting ritual that was part of a Roman festival honoring Pamona, the goddess of agriculture and abundance. Multiple variations existed, but the basic gist was that young men and women would be able to foretell their future relationships based on the game. When the Romans conquered the British Isles the Pamona festival was blended with the similarly timed Samhain, a precursor to Halloween.
9. Black and Orange
The classic Halloween colors can also trace their origins back to the Celtic festival Samhain. Black represented the “death” of summer while orange is emblematic of the autumn harvest season.
As a phenomenon that often varies by region, the pre-Halloween tradition, also known as “Devil’s Night”, is credited with a different origin depending on whom you ask. Some sources say that pranks were originally part of May Day Celebrations. But Samhain, and eventually All Souls Day, always seem to have included good-natured mischief. When Scottish and Irish immigrants came to America, they brought along the tradition of celebrating Mischief Night as part of Halloween, which was great for candy-fueled pranksters.
11. Candles and Bonfires
These days, candles are more likely than towering traditional bonfires, but for much of the early history of Halloween, open flames were integral in lighting the way for souls seeking the afterlife.
12. Candy Apples
People have been coating fruit in sugar syrups as a means of preservation for centuries. Since the development of the Roman festival of Pamona, a goddess often represented by and associated with apples, the fruit has had a place in harvest celebrations. But the first mention of candy apples being given out at Halloween didn’t occur until the 1950s.
It’s likely that bats were present at the earliest celebrations of proto-Halloween, not just symbolically but literally. As part of Samhain, the Celts lit large bonfires, which attracted insects. The insects, in turn, attracted bats, which soon became associated with the festival. Medieval folklore expanded upon the spooky connotation of bats with a number of superstitions built around the idea that bats were the harbingers of death.
The act of going door-to-door for handouts has long been a part of Halloween celebrations. But up until the middle of the 20th century, the “treats” kids received were not necessarily candy—toys, coins, fruit and nuts were just as likely to be given out. The rise in the popularity of trick-or-treating in the 1950s inspired candy companies to make a marketing push with small, individually wrapped confections. People obliged out of convenience, but candy didn’t dominate at the exclusion of all other treats until parents started fearing anything unwrapped in the 1970s.
15. Candy Corn
According to some stories, a candymaker at the Wunderlee Candy Company in Philadelphia invented the revolutionary tri-color candy in the 1880s. The treats didn’t become a widespread phenomenon until another company brought the candy to the masses in 1898. At the time, candy corn was called “Chicken Feed” and sold in boxes that read “Something worth crowing for.” Originally just generically autumnal candy because of corn’s association with harvest time, candy corn became Halloween-specific when trick-or-treating rose to prominence in the 1950s.
Now for the deeper thought…..I feel some indoctrination into the “scary” parts of life are healthy for children. Parents teach children to trust in them by being there for the support and for the safety from the “boogie man”. God is our Father and we are exposed to some scary times in our lives and we need to remember the lesson of the hay ride. We are going to be scared in life; we have to trust in God to make it all go away and allow us to load back on the life trailer and keep riding. Life can be fun and at the same time a little frightening so if we make sure God is on every hay ride; we are going to have a good time and make it over the holes and the bumps in the road.
(C) Copyright 2012-2019 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced to original location, if known, for credit reference.
WHY DO WE PROMOTE? WHAT IS ACCEPTABLE TO PROMOTE? WHAT SHOULDN’T WE PROMOTE? Some of you may be feeling a little confused since you read the blog regularly and most of my blogs are related to inspiration and sometimes health and decor tips. Recently, I have had the completion of a lifelong dream to occur and it requires promotion. As I was doing my promotional tweets, facebook personal and author page posts, I realized there are some things and events we should promote. This gave me the inspiration for this topic. Do we promote only materialistic items or is it possible to promote more than those items, and my mind thought about what we possess which can be worthy of promoting and the blog began. First let us consider how we might effectively market ourselves with the excerpt from a good article (link is below with excerpt attached.)
Unless you’re in business for yourself or looking for a job, the idea of marketing yourself may not sound like anything that concerns you. But it’s a skill everyone needs to master. Understand the basics and you’ll be prepared to position yourself as an expert. Here are seven proven strategies for marketing yourself successfully and effectively:
1. Identify your niche.What are your interests? Your talents? Your passions? Think about the ways you already bring these elements together and explore the possibilities for how you can engage them in in innovation and problem solving. Focus on the uncommon things you have to offer.
2. Seek recognition for your expertise. Showcase what you know by building a knowledge base. Grow your reputation and promote your informed opinions. The hallmark of expertise is figuring out what’s information and relevant. Develop relationships with thought leaders and media representatives in your field and your community.
3. Share your wisdom.Write prolifically about what you know to get your name in front of people as an expert. Contribute articles and blog posts any time you have an opportunity. Make sure it’s informative, well written, timely, and valuable to readers.
4. Build a community. Create a network of like-minded people in your field and work on connecting deeply and really getting to know one another. Genuine expertise is always drawn to other experts, and in their company you can open up a whole world of new possibilities.
5. Be of service to others. Become a trusted advisor and do what you can to help as many people as you can. How can you use what you do to be of service? Maybe you can offer your talents to a local nonprofit or set up an internship or mentoring opportunity to help someone starting out.
6. Be social savvy. Spend focused time on social media tools such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and electronic groups in your industry.
Share some of your expertise for free, and you can begin building a base of fans who trust you and look to you for expert advice.
7. Remember who you are- is the message to the world. Every word you say, everything that you communicate and do, is a message to the world. Just as a good organization protects its brand, protect your reputation by being intentional about the words you speak and the actions you perform.
The person who knows how best to market yourself is you. Start now to set yourself apart as a leader and generous citizen of your professional communities, and you can take yourself much further than you may have dreamed.
Note: As my own person, with my own quirks, likes and dislikes, I agree the person who knows you best to market or promote you is you. I am not saying to not seek professional promotion in the beginning if you feel uncomfortable with self promotion. I am comfortable in my skin and love promotion, events, networking, but the most rewarding is when I see others respond to my work, not me. It is all about the story, the books, the reader’s responses, and yes, the sales.
Here are my books and a sample of reviews (all are on Amazon for you to read:
Final thought for all of us: I don’t have a lot of money, fame, or I don’t come from a wealthy fame, but when all is said and done the best item I have to promote is I love to write, I love people who love others, I love life, and all of the adventures it can give. Promote what you love and it will come naturally but never try to be something you are not. God gave us what we ever need in this life if we will seek those talents, work hard to make them as good as they can be, and don’t forget even a breath is a gift so never be ungrateful for each one…..Until We Read Again……Arline Miller, author and blogger