The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Monday, March 30, 2015

A is for Apple (#AtoZChallenge)

English: A honeycrisp apple from an organic fo...
 A honeycrisp apple from an organic food farm co-op.
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
A Is For Apple

       An apple a day is some good healthy advice that has long been cited by those in the know.  I've heard this since I was a kid and that's been some 60 years ago.   My father loved apples and it seemed like we usually had apples around the house.  If he saw a roadside stand selling apples we'd invariably pull over and when he resumed driving he'd be chomping away on an apple.

        As for me I can't say I've been quite the apple fan that my dad was.  Oh sure, I like apples just fine, but my preference is to carefully cut them up in neat slices and eat them piece by piece.  No major chomping for me.   The apple variety that I've been mostly buying and eating over the past couple years is the Honeycrisp apple--sweet, juicy and utterly delicious.

        I'm maybe not eating the apple a day as suggested by health experts, but I've been eating more apples than I used to.   Now if only those Honeycrisp apples weren't so darn expensive!

This Is A to Z!

        No I didn't accidentally post early.  What I did was set my timer for 5 minutes and then I started writing in stream-of-consciousness style about a commonly stated "A" aphorism.   I could have posted about any "A" topic that popped into my head.   For that matter I could have done a post about "aphorisms".

         The point of all this is to refute all those who say, "I don't have time to do A to Z in April."   Five little minutes is enough for any average writer to come up with something.  We're not expecting every post to be a work of genius (though genius is always welcomed and admired).

         So you think you don't have time to come up with a post every day in April.  I've just demonstrated that it can easily be done in five minutes--or ten minutes if you include this explanatory tag to my example post.  I'd be willing to bet that a good many of you could come up with a much better post than I did here.  Take the Challenge and prove it.

         Now you have no excuses.   Go to the A to Z Blog Sign up List and add your blog.  You can do this.   You can do this very easily.

         Now what's your excuse for not doing the A to Z Challenge?    Do you think that everything you post needs to be a work of genius?   Do you ever participate in timed stream-of-consciousness writing exercises? 

 
        

   The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge begins this Wednesday April 1st!  The sign up list is still open!







105 comments:

  1. Well done Lee - setting the example ... I love apples but can't munch them as I did .. so I add them to salads, or slice and dice and eat ..

    Cheers Hilary

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    1. I prefer things like apples in easily manageable portions--I'm paranoid about my teeth coming out I guess.

      Lee

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  2. Great post Lee, To think this is the 6th A to Z, who'd have thought your idea back in 2010 would take off the way it has. Take care and don't work too hard.

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    1. I never dreamed that A to Z would take off like it did when I first suggested the idea, but then I saw fairly soon how much people liked the idea.

      Lee

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  3. The children at school were always incredulous that my dad got his stomach out of wack every year by eating too many oranges. They just did not get where a depression era kid's mind was.
    Honeycrisps are good.

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    1. That generation valued fresh stuff than mine did for the most part. Now so much is about prepared foods.

      Lee

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  4. We've had a ton of sign ups the past few days!
    I eat an apple almost every day. Plus a banana most days. And I'm never sick. Must be something to it.

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    1. We might make 2000 in the final stretch!

      Lee

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  5. Washington apples are the BEST! My personal fave are Fuji. Like you, I have to slice mine up. They are good with a bit of peanut butter too.

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    1. Never tried the peanut butter on apples!

      Lee

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  6. Well done Mr B. . . . are you sure you wrote that in 5 minutes I cant type that fast and make any sense. Which explains much about my blog. . . . . .

    I will be adding my name tomorrow to the list.

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    1. Wrote the text in about ten minutes, then it took a few more to add the photo and format and edit everything. In all less than 20 minutes.

      Lee

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  7. I don't eat apples but my husband has one every day. We both eat a banana. I do so agree it is easy to write a blog in a few minutes. I usually do. My first A to Z four years ago was done like that . However, it's not so much the writing that takes time Lee, it's the visiting which, unless you are lucky enough to have clones, takes an age.

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    1. So right, the visiting does take time, but if we're doing that anyway then A to Z is a minor addition to how we already blog.

      Lee.

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  8. Wow - a post in 5 or 10 minutes! Wish I could be that fast. Good way to lead by example though. Thanks for the pep talk, Lee!
    I love apples too, but like you, slice them up to eat. My favourite brand is Golden Delicious. Cheers!

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    1. The posts take longer when you fancy them up which I no longer do to much of. Still though an experienced blogger can whip posts out pretty quickly.

      Lee

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    2. True, but I'm one of those "fancy uppers". I love graphics and design! Sometimes searching for just the right image takes the longest, plus, many of my posts require some research. Then there's formatting...Yes, the writing part is usually the easiest.

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    3. Yes, I've noticed your extras in your posts. Do you use a content suggestion engine to help you find images? They can save some time for you.

      Lee

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    4. Content suggestion engine? That's a term I haven't heard before, Lee. I sure could use some help in that area. Any recommendations? I have a list of sites that offer free to use images, plus Google advanced search. Thanks!

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    5. I use Zemanta, but I may look for another as some of their suggestions have gotten kind of weird of late. Then again maybe my posts are weird and attract weird suggestions.

      Lee

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    6. Thanks for the suggestion. I'm going to do some research about this. See you tomorrow!

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  9. Hey, Lee, that's great, except even if it only takes 5 minutes to write a post, you still have to go visit the other bloggers. Alex says he visits 150 blogs minimum per day. That's a whole lotta time, kiddo. That's why I'm not participating this year. Don't want to sell anybody short.
    Good luck with it. I'll be cheering from the sidelines.

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    1. I think Alex is probably the exception where it comes to making rounds. I have to limit myself to take care of the things I need to do and I don't feel like I'm selling anyone short in doing that. Life has to be attended to first.

      Lee

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  10. Nicely done! I love apple picking in the fall. There is something so peaceful about it.

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    1. I never picked any apples off the tree, just the ones out of the produce bins

      Lee

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  11. My parents have an apple tree and we go out an help pick them and consequently bring home a ton of apples. The ones I planted died. I need to plant some more. I love all things apple.
    I am going to attempt the A-Z this year. I do agree with Jo that the visiting is what takes the time. That and answering comments.

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    1. Most of the things I plant in my yard seem to never sprout or eventually die. I think it's a combination of neglect and poor soil.

      Lee

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  12. Honeycrisps are delicious but you're right, they're expensive! Galas are my other favorite, and usually a lot cheaper.

    I like the idea of every post not having to be a work of genius. Maybe that's part of what is making me worry and procrastinate on writing them. I want them to be perfect, but they don't have to be.

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    1. I like to put out the best quality that I can within the constraints of available time. I think there is the difference between quality good enough to put public and masterful work that receives literary praise. If I could do the latter then great, but I'm not going to expect every blog post to turn out that way.

      Lee

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  13. I'm done with the writing and photos. My question is: how many posts will blogger let me schedule in at one time? Do you know, Lee?

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    1. As far as I know there is no limit. I'm sure it's over 50 since I'm often at that advance number and haven't run into any problems with it so far. I guess just start scheduling them and see what happens.

      Lee


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  14. Uh oh, my excuse? There's no way I could do what I do and draw comics every single day. I'd go mad. Each comic, while being simple, takes much more than just 5-10 minutes. Is that a valid excuse?

    Also, I'm not a huge apple fan, but I love those honeycrisp apples. So sweet and tasty. It's like the candy of the fruit world.

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    1. Not a valid excuse. But kind of a reasonable one I suppose.

      Yeah, candy of the fruit world. Probably why I like them so much.

      Lee

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  15. Good point well made. I've just been trying to persuade a former colleague of mine who blogs that she should join in the A to Z. As you say, it's still not too late...just! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with.

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    1. Bloggers have until April 2nd to join in. A to Z is a good exercise in fast creative writing--or they can take as much time as they like with each post. It's worth a try to any blogger though.

      Lee

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  16. Some people in my local writing group have said they don't have time to do A to Z, thinking it's too challenging and overwhelming with the themes, visits, comments, badges, teams, and codes. It's only as challenging as one makes it. I know not everyone is as deep and serious as I am, and that a simpler, more lighthearted theme is all it takes.

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    1. You've got the right spirit and attitude!

      Lee

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  17. Love this sample post, Arlee! I wish I had gone with that kind of theme - random short fiction/reflection. Next year!

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    1. Readers probably prefer simple during April.

      Lee

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  18. Honey crisps are expensive. My children all love apples and we almost always have some in the frig. They'll eat almost any kind but probably Granny Smith is their favorite.
    You got me thinking I should have done a healthy eating theme.

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    1. That would be a good theme and better yet we should all do more healthy eating.

      Lee

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  19. Come one people. One of us. One of us. ;)

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  20. Nice sample to get us started! Thanks.

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    1. Just got a bit weary of the excuse that people didn't have time to write posts. The writing is the easiest part.

      Lee

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  21. Not gonna do it... wouldn't be prudent....

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  22. Yes, honeycrisp! Best apple ever.
    And I'm still not in on a-to-z, this year.

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    1. Today at $2 less per pound I got some Delicious apples again just to make the comparison. I don't think it will match Honeycrisp though.

      Lee

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  23. Its not writing the posts that intimidates me with A-Z; its all that blog visiting and commenting. Yes, I'm way to anti-social for that. But I do commend those with the fortitude for it. Congrats on such a hip idea Lee.

    I prefer my apples all cut up too :)

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    1. I'm glad I'm not the only baby who likes their food neatly cut up so it's easy to eat.

      The networking is the hard part, but that was the original point of A to Z though now prompts and content to me are equally important.

      Lee

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  24. Hi Arlee: An apple story--If you ride the narrow gauge to Silverton, Colorado, through the mountains, among the towering pine trees, every few hundred feet, there is an apple tree! Why, because the passengers from long ago tossed the apple cores they were eating from the train which had many open cars.

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    1. I remember hearing that story some time back. Thanks for reminding me of that. A case where being a litterbug is a good thing.

      Lee

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  25. Maybe next year, as I say every year. It would be like throwing a party and no one showing up.

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    1. I've thrown those parties before. Less clean up involved and more goodies for me.

      Lee

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  26. That was brilliant to demonstrate the length and time. Mine are about 100 to 200 words, except for "K".

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    1. I got kind of tired of people saying they didn't have time to write. The networking I can understand, but writers who say they can whip something out in just a few minutes to me seems kind of flimsy.

      Lee

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  27. My favorite apple is any one but red delicious which I find bland. You gave me a bit of a start I thought I fell behind on my first year joining you. :-)

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    1. Yeah I thought today's post might initially be a jolt for a few. Today I bought Red Delicious apples. I'll test one out tomorrow. After the HoneyCrisps I'm kind of spoiled.

      Lee

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  28. Yup, sliced apples, dipped in peanut butter is a plus.

    Writing is easy. Following others and commenting and replying to those comments, OMG, never thought of that.

    Oh well, live an learn. It ought to be fun.

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    1. A to Z always provides good learning experiences.

      Lee

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  29. Time and real world issues have prevented me from doing it this year.

    Last year, I had lots of time to plan and participate. This year, no spare time do anything beyond the bare minimum in cyberspace, which also dovetails into the real world issues that have made a shambles of what little down time I do have.

    Father Nature's Corner

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    1. The real world should just leave us to our fantasies.

      Lee

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  30. I've been working my posts ahead for the challenge, but I'm not far enough long to suit my taste. Speaking of taste, I like Honeycrisp apples, too. A good friend told me about this variety a few years back. They are so aromatic. I love sweet fragrance of Honeycrisp! I need to eat more apples. Heck, I need to eat more fruit than I do, but the calories?! Oh well, after I drop a few more pounds then I'll add fruit back to my diet. I'm ready to get going with the A-Z challenge tomorrow!! Whoo-hoo!!!

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    1. I've got plenty of calories to drop in other food groups so I'm not going to eat any less fruit than I do now. Actually I'd be better off to eat more.

      Lee

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  31. Uhh ... the five minute rule! I'll have to remember that as I still have some letters I'm working on. I might even surprise myself. :)

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    1. Five minutes or whatever time limit you set for yourself is good writing exercise. I'm taking a cue from my old college essay tests.

      Lee

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  32. Yes I do! I have done most of my A to Zed (Canuck version) write on the blog site - either writing extemporaneously about a subject in my theme (attitude of a writer) (bums in seats) or a word my finger fell upon in my trusty ole dictionary (a story involving a Bondo rescue mission). I love writing off the cuff and I can tell you this year there is absolutely no one busier than me this April. Last year I spent April with my newest grandchild and his brand-new parents and I still managed. This year I work at least 44 hours a week at my job, am working on a final revision to my YA and have a murder mystery coming up.

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    1. Working a regular job is plenty enough to keep anyone busy!

      Lee

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  33. My heart sunk and I got a pit in my stomach when I saw your post. Frantically my brain is scrambling to ascertain the date. Wait! It's not April 1st yet. Is it???? Brilliant post to let folks know that it doesn't have to be a laborious journey. Well done!
    Michele at Angels Bark

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    1. Yes, I just wanted to keep everyone on their toes!

      Lee

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  34. I have 2 apples a day-Golden delicious plus an orange (or 3) and starwberries-I love fruit. and it keeps my blood sugar level even(I am hypoglycemic) This is only my 2 nd time at the A to Z and I am gong ho! The big thing is the visiting. I love seeing what everyone is going to do. I only have a laptop at home that we don't move around. One day i will buy a tablet when I can. I have to say I am excited about the A to Z

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    1. Glad you'll be keeping up with this year's A to Z. Keep eating that fruit!

      Lee

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  35. I had a bit of a panic when I saw this, then felt utterly baffled when I saw the date. Great example of how easy it is to take part in the A to Z Challenge.

    Only one more sleep to go!

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    1. I wanted to have some fun with a false alarm and what I think is a good example in refute of the "I don't have any posts prepared and don't have time to do them now" excuse. No excuse for the writing part I say!

      Lee

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  36. Now see, I was going to be a surprise entry, but you used the EXACT SAME IDEA I was going to use for "A"

    Now what's the point?

    My life is over.

    My entire world view has been shattered.

    For some people, it might not be so much not having the time as how much time they want to spend in front of a computer...that has been my challenge of late-time not looking at a screen.

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    1. Doing it the short post way would mean just a few minutes in front of the computer, but then there would be no networking involved. That works as content development though.

      Lee

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  37. Funny-I just noticed the comments about people stressing out-my first thought was "Lee has lost it!"

    I had comment troubles yesterday-left one here and it did not take (got an error message)-but left one on ABFTS, got the same error message, but it stuck.

    Not sure if it was Blogger or my company's internet connection.

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    1. I don't know, but I get weird problems on the net and blogger sometimes and just walk away for a while to come back later when all is back to normal. Maybe it was a brief Blogger problem. It happens.

      Lee

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  38. I take a long time to write one.... but gear up as the deadline inches closer...

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    1. Sometimes I'll take a long time to write posts, but I've been trying to keep it shorter as much as I can. Especially during A to Z.

      Lee

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  39. Looking forward to seeing what you do this year!

    --
    Tim Brannan, The Other Side Blog
    2015 A to Z of Vampires
    http://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/

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  40. I'm keeping it kind of low key this year.

    Lee

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  41. Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. Looking forward to read an get inspired by the posts. :)

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    1. We can make things much too complicated--so true. It was nice being a child when things seemed simpler.


      Lee

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  42. Happy to join for another year! Thanks for your commitment to AtoZ

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  43. Hi Arlee....this is my second A to Z and I'm loving it!! i love how I start thinking about the whole challenge and my theme almost a month in advance!

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  44. Spud from the A to Z I'm up and running and sheduled to go out daily, I just stit back & watch. Thought you might hav ecome up with somting more original than A for Apple though.

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  45. Great post, Arlee! And I'm happy to say I'm back for the A-Z challenge to get me back into the habit of blogging on a regular basis! Hope I don't stumble along the way!

    Jeff

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  46. Agree, all posts cant be great piece of work, some will be mediocre and in my case, some can be utter cringe worthy! :D
    The idea is to challenge and discipline oneself to write and of course, a challenge like this is a great place to network too! This is my third year and I wish I could finish writing my posts in 5-10 minutes. Must strive towards this goal. :)

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  47. I love apples...crisp and fresh and that was a great way to nudge people a little to ponder over their excuses :)

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  48. I love free writing. In fact most of my posts are free writes. It's too hard to do it any other way. this is my third year with the AtoZ and I'm loving it.

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  49. I love apples! They are delicious and so easy to bake with! :) MRS N aka N. N. Light

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  50. I love apples too! I usually go with Fuji, similar to Honey Crisp, but cheaper.

    I recently saw a quote that cracked me up: An apple a day keeps anyone away...... if thrown hard enough. :)

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  51. Hi,
    Great post on apples. They really are one two favorite fruits that I love. The second is bananas-
    You know I start this Challenge fresh every year. I don't write ahead. I wait until the first day and write each post fresh on each day. I've learned lots about my own creative ability. I already know I'm going to enjoy the challenge this year.
    Visiting from A to Z Blog Challenge 2015

    Shalom,
    Patricia at Everything Must Change

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  52. Apples kept me from coming down with every bug that went around work this winter, except for one booger of a virus that hit me in February. Every time I felt the hint of something coming on, I simply ate an apple and immediately felt better - once again, except for that one monster germ.

    And yes, it's true that it takes little time to write a blog post. It mostly takes attention, and often just a smidgen of that.

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  53. Stream of consciousness is the way to go. How to post several things on the same day must be tough. Good luck this month.

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  54. Great post and a nice example of stream of consciousness writing. I'm going tty try it for some of my posts, I think. Thanks.

    Oh, and my favourite apple is the Granny Smith. Crisp, juicy and at the right time, sweet with a touch of sour.

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  55. Hi Arlee,
    I too like stream of consciousness, I tend to do a lot.
    I don't like apples though.
    A is for Arcadian smile ~ A Poesy Discourse

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  56. Hi Arlee, cool name. I have a second cousin named Arlo and I have a question about claiming Adult Content (AC) for the challenge. Would you kindly clarify for the content that needs to be marked "adult" ? There are swear words on my blog. Does that mean I have to choose the (AC) category?

    Thank you

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    1. Excessive swear words might be a problem if gratuitous and something that might be something parents wouldn't want their kids to see. The standard I like to use as comparison is the movie rating system which is relatively liberal when it comes to what some deem to be offensive language. If your blog is comparable to an "R" movie rating then it should be labeled "AC". Most of us have reasonable judgment about this sort of thing so I should think you might figure this out. We'll add a label if we start getting numerous complaints which is a rare thing anymore since bloggers have been very considerate in this regard.

      Thanks for asking.

      Arlee

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  57. Hi... following you and that's because I just joined your A to Z and I have because my friend Naila-Moon she does it and it looks kinda fun so I thought I'd try it. So very nice to meet you and I think I'll give it a go. Have a great day!

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  58. I like apple slices with a little bit of strawberry jello sprinkled on top. (The powder, right out of the packet.)

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Lee