Time--2017 A to Z Theme

My theme for the 2017 Blogging from A to Z April Challenge was "Time". The posts are of a more philosophical, contemplative, and even autobiographical bent. No time management tips in this theme, but stuff intended to make you think.

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

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Monday, March 27, 2017

The Time Is Fast Upon Us


        Have you ever thought about how much time you spend thinking about time?   When we're not planning what to do with our time in the future, we are often either pondering what we are doing with our time in the present or ruing about time lost in the past.  The subject of time can be a time consuming paradox. 

STS-133 Discovery rollout
STS-133 Discovery rollout (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
  The Final Countdown      

      I doubt whether there is anyone who now lives or who has ever lived who has not at some point or another marveled about how quickly time has passed.  That is, anyone who has grasped the concept of time.  When we are small children, before we've learned to tell time for ourselves, we will continually pester our parents with inquiries like "Is it time yet?"   Those special days like Christmas or birthdays will have what seems to be an interminable countdown until they are suddenly here and gone leaving us to look forward to our next big life event.   And so goes our lives.

      And once again for those of us doing the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge begins that final countdown until day one--April 1st, 2017.  This will be the eighth year of the April A to Z event with thousands of bloggers having participated with tens of thousands of A to Z blog posts.  This is rather impressive when you think about it and even more impressive when you consider the amount of time we have individually put into our A to Z posts over the years, not only in the writing of our own posts, but in the reading of many other posts by the bloggers who have participated in past events.

        The first year that I did the A to Z Challenge--it was 2010 with less than 100 bloggers--I figured that I was putting in twelve to fifteen hours per day with blogging.  But that was how I got other bloggers involved and kept still more engaged.  My A to Z time investment that first year paid off big considering the huge numbers who signed up in succeeding years.  Since that first year I've had to cut back on my blogging time, but still I continue to make a sizable investment of time with the Challenge.   Maybe it's crazy, but it's a fun sort of crazy I guess.

        So here we are with just a few more days to go before another A to Z Challenge kicks off.  The time is fast upon us it seems, but then it's somewhat of an illusion.  The pacing of time will be the same as always, but factors of our lives may cause us to feel like the time is going faster.  If you've procrastinated in preparing your posts like I have then you are likely feeling the pressure to get this done.  Where I am in my A to Z preparation is my own fault because I changed my theme with a matter of a few weeks to go. But then that's what makes A to Z a Challenge!

        The time until April 1st is shorter today than it was yesterday or last week, but the time is not going any faster.  The time might seem "fast" upon us, but that's only because there are fewer days.  More properly we should say "The time is short upon us" but that sounds silly I suppose.  The days and hours are closing in as we approach A to Z opening day, but time itself moves indifferently onward.

          If you're participating in the April A to Z, do you have all of your posts finished?   How much time do you normally devote to your blogging activity?    Do you spend more time blogging while preparing for and during the month of April than you do at other times?

          In addition to the Blogging from A to Z Challenge, on the 1st and 15th I'll also be participating in the Battle of the Bands which I will combine with my "Time" theme.   If you are interested in joining us in Battle of the Bands (we'd love to have more participants!) then please read about it at the blog of Stephen T McCarthy and let him or me know that you want to join us so we can add your link to the list.  

        Also, my April contribution to the Insecure Writer's Support Group will incorporate a time related theme.  The optional question for #IWSG during April will be related to the A to Z Challenge and reads as follows: 
  Have you taken advantage of the annual A to Z Challenge in terms of marketing, networking, publicity for your book? What were the results? 

  Since I don't have a personal answer for that question I'll be pursuing my own topic, but if this relates to any of you, I'm anxious to hear your answers.






74 comments:

  1. Good luck with the challenge. I like your blog and will be back, if you'll allow me!

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  2. I hope to finish the A to Z, As ill health as prevented me from blogging. This will be the eighth one for me and find it important I do do it. Whilst being unwell I have thought about the time I've wasted feeling sorry for myself whilst there are people who are far worse than I.
    Great post as always Le..
    Yvonne.

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    1. Yvonne, I certainly hope you can finish another A to Z and hope you start feeling much better with the advent of Spring and the coming of Summer. Feeling sorry doesn't help make things better and you're so right about always being able to find someone worse off than we are.

      Lee

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  3. Lee, I've always looked forward to the A2Z challenge. Usually I'm no where near ready by launch day. This year I may manage to squeeze together all of my posts before April 1st and if not shortly after. This year I"m a little more excited than years past. I believe it's because I'm doing something a bit more personal and meaning to me this time (well look at that I used your theme word) around. This will make my 4th year playing along with y'all and I'm in awe by everyone's dedication to this annual blogging event from the hosts to the bloggers. It should be an exciting ride for us all!

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    1. Cathy, the biggest success of A to Z is found with the participants. It's wonderful that so many keep coming back for another Challenge and new bloggers continue to try for themselves.

      Lee

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  4. First year I'll miss it, but I just don't have that kind of time anymore. I do know what it's like to spend those kinds of hours in front of the computer - I do it every month for IWSG post day.

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    1. Alex, blogging can take so much time especially when networking full force. There are so many other things besides blogging that need to be done.

      Lee

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  5. 2016 was my Grand Opus! It helped me focus all my energy (and time) on what I wanted to say to my grandchildren about 'Lessons Learned'. A tough act to follow. This year I'll be following and cheering you all on. Thanks to the team for an amazing challenge.
    https://meinthemiddlewrites.com/

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    1. Mary Lou, it's nice that you were able to produce a series of value for you and your family. If you change your mind for this year you can still jump in.

      Lee

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  6. This post has put Chicago's "Does anybody know what time it is" in my head. A great song.

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    1. JoJo, if you're going to have a song stuck in your head then that song is a good one to have.

      Lee

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  7. Time is something I have to budget wisely these days. Blogging daily is just out of the question now.

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    1. L.Diane, time is more valuable than money and it's irreplaceable once spent.

      Lee

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  8. I've enjoyed the AtoZ Challenge for several years. I've discovered so many wonderful blogs because of it, so I really do appreciate having been a part. I can't do it this year, but I hope to return in 2018! I'll be around to see how everyone's doing and to cheer them on.

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    1. C.Lee, you're welcome back anytime! Please do visit participants as much and whenever you can this year.

      Lee

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  9. I was around when you began, but always knew I'd never be able to fulfill the requirements. I admire those of you who do, though. I understand the fun craziness of it. Good luck All!
    Oh, btw, I'm interested in the marketing aspects of blogging, i.e ad revenue. I don't have the following to benefit from it with my blog and I'm not at all consistent. Do you have a previous post that speaks on this subject?

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    1. I'm back because I forgot to click on the notify button.

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    2. Anita, I'm likely the wrong party to ask about making money with blogging as so far I've not been very successful. There are some good posts that I've seen elsewhere on the topic. I'd suggest doing some Google searches regarding this. I've found some very good blog articles doing the searches, but I've not heeded the suggestions very well.

      Lee

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  10. Time sure is fickle as we think about it and it passes and then we think about thinking about it. Ugg just can hurt the head lol Being far ahead let's me budget my time. I wouldn't be posting every day if I wasn't ahead. Starting a to z 2018 now lol April isn't much more work for me, just more people posting.

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    1. Pat, Thinking about thinking about things can be like delving into some kind of puzzle box. Sometimes it's best not to think on such things since there are rarely good answers to be found. Working ahead is a wise method for organizing time. Sometimes I'm good at this while other times the time catches up before I can finish.

      Lee

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  11. I wrote 24 of my A to Z posts for my main blog in August and September, and finally did X and Z in January. I may also still have a picture to add for one of my X topics, but it won't be the end of the world if I don't illustrate it. I spent this month working on the A to Z posts for my secondary blog, and was glad to be finished before the end of the month.

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    1. Carrie-Anne, congratulations! That is what I call diligence. I wish I could say the same this year, but I've really been bad about keeping ahead of the game of late.

      Lee

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  12. Definitely been contemplating TIME & how quickly it IS flying! I do wish April would have more hours! I am feeling the pressure! I am in awe of the quality of blogs participating! & just second guessing myself :)

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    1. Ishieta, there is always so much great blogging talent involved in A to Z. It can be inspirational as well as a bit humbling.

      Lee

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  13. My oh my, am I feeling the pressure -- I've only got my A-E posts completed so far! I usually spend hours on each post, so hopefully the time doesn't get away from me. Thanks for stopping by to check out my theme this year, Dragons in Our Fandoms, and I'm looking forward to your Time posts as well!
    Jamie Lyn Weigt | Writing Dragons Blog

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    1. Jamie, you've got more April posts prepared than I do at the moment. But I don't put hours into a post either. Hope you get yours done okay.

      Lee

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  14. "Fun kind of crazy" describes it perfectly! I bet you never thought it would grow to such incredible proportions. I just returned from a two day concert getaway (it was worth it! ☺), but am now further behind than I planned to be. Still, A - M are finished and the rest are framed, so that's probably better than some.See you on April ist!

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    1. Debbie D, gotta have fun and take care of life and blog when you can. You've done much better than I so far.

      Lee

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  15. Daily blogging doesn't work for me right now, but maybe I'll jump back into the A-Z one of these years. It was a lot of fun the year I did it, but you're right. It requires a ton of time to do it right, and I'm about half a ton short right now.

    Have fun!

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    1. Susan FS, aside from A to Z I doubt whether I'd ever blog daily again. To get enough comments on daily posts you'd be commenting on other blogs nearly all day. I've done the daily blogging and it wasn't really worth all that effort.

      Lee

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  16. My plate is FULL and I have 10000001 things to do...but the A to Z challenge is really close to my heart.
    I'm fortunate enough to have a two-week school break starting 31st March and that's the reason why I can participate. If that school holiday ever shifts (hopefully not...), well, that's another story...

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    1. Michelle, isn't that break convenient. Can't imagine they'd shift at the last minute. April 1st is this Saturday!

      Lee

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  17. I have prepped all the letters on my blog with the A to Z letter icon and titled them. I have A started to be written. I have the alphabet all planned but my theme also requires some creating on my part and I am SERIOUSLY behind in that regard. This is fun, so I'm not going to stress! I am definitely looking into using the A to Z for marketing and networking, but not for my writing. I am hoping to be able to showcase my crafting and I have some affiliate sites so perhaps I'll get a click or two there. If not, it still will not be a waste of my time! Thanks Arlee!
    Testing my link:
    Me in March

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    1. Janet, definitely don't stress since A to Z is supposed to be about fun. It's gonna come to you just fine I'm sure. The April Challenge can be a marketing opportunity in many ways even if it's only subtle.

      Your link worked for me. Thank you!

      Lee

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  18. I'm done through Q, and I'm trying to get this week's posts done so I can finish them up without having to worry about the week.

    I probably spend 1-2 hours a day on blogging and another 1-2 hours reading other blogs. What the Challenge will do to that is anyone's guess, but I'll do my best to maintain the same schedule on through next month. I'm kind of insane that way.

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    1. John, so far I've finished posts to C with things started along the rest of the way. I'd like to think I'll finish ahead of start day, but I'm starting to doubt it.

      Lee

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  19. I'm preposting stuff. I am keeping things simple and short and not spending much time at all with the prep work.

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    1. Stephen Tremp, sounds like a wise plan to me. I'm trying to do the same, but not getting there very quickly.

      Lee

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  20. I'm just scheduling 'D' and maybe 'E' today, which means that I am very behind. At least, I know what each letter will be about - well roughly in most cases. 'J' is the hard one as I need to find a key moment in history for Judaism - post 1000 AD and before 1900. The tough letters like X and Z are straightforward - I'm hoping. (I won't be getting Sundays off at this rate.)

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    1. Roland, I'm right there beside you. I'm going to try to get more done, but it's been slow going.

      Lee

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  21. Great post about time. Time is a funny thing. We are at that age where we set and reflect back over the years at what we have done, where we were and where we are today and all that we have accomplished. As for the April Challenge, I am working on the third and fourth week. I've got a lot of work to do just catching up on your A-Z Theme Reveal post. I'm off today playing catch up on the blog and in the housework. Thank you once more for this platform. One of my goals for this year was on more awareness. I don't know if you've heard but there is a 7 y/o boy who entered rehab this week in Ohio for a heroin addiction. We have so much work to do!

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    1. Girl, I want my time back! I'm eternally trying to play blog catch up, but I never seem to keep up. We don't hear about addiction stuff around where I live, but I'm sure it's out there. Mostly I hear about the stuff back east.

      Lee

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  22. What an interesting topic! looking forward to your daily blogs.

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    1. Radha, Keeping coming back for more!

      Lee

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  23. Subject of time is definitely a time consuming paradox... But isn't it that time well invested is time well harvested as well!
    Time spent in reading, say for example, and pondering is an investment... for us its broadening our vision. And this wide angle perspective will then reflects in the article that are churned out by the brain after a cud chewing of the thoughts.. thoughts that have originated out of reading!
    A To Z challenge has for sure taken a big chunk of our time frame as of now... but the knowledge that we have acquired, about us, about the blogging world is enormous... and its amazing! Feel that...over the time period this time investment will plateau and stabilize!
    So far enjoying the time ride with A to Z Challenge!

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    1. Mommies, I guess I get more out of blogging than just watching random stuff on TV. Time spent without focus and reason can be time squandered, but even seemingly wasted time can provide opportunities if we keep our minds and eyes open.

      Glad you're taking the A to Z ride!

      Lee

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  24. Looking forward (see what I did there) to reading your posts about time. Have added you to my blogroll at http://candacecarrabus.com

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    1. Candace, the time is almost here! Thanks for adding me to your blogroll. Lots of lists out there for those who look for them.

      Lee

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  25. Wowzers, Arlee! 12-15 hours that first year? That's a lot but it sure paid off, didn't it? The A-Z is an enormous success. I participated and was even a minion (co-host) one year, but it's become a very busy time of year for me at work, so I can no longer commit that kind of time anymore. But gosh, it was fun! Good luck to you and everyone else participating.

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    1. Elsie, in those early days I was absolutely gung ho. But it really was a lot of hours to put in. I guess it was worth it.

      Lee

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  26. I have scanned your blog post - You're the creator, your the one, I will perform my function for the 7h AtoZ challenge. So far eveyything is good to go

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    1. Guy, yes, you can blame me for the April madness. Better to be good to go than bad to go like I am.

      Lee

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  27. Arlee, I am flabbergasted by this question: "If you're participating in the April A to Z, do you have all of your posts finished?" Are you serious? I've just finished "B" because I have a busy week ahead and wanted to get ahead. I didn't know you could actually write the whole lot ahead! WOW! Now I'll have to do it again next year and write in advance! I'll be back.

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    1. Shirley, there are a lot of bloggers who do have their posts finished already. In some years past I have also finished ahead of time. From the standpoint of visiting other blogs it's a good idea to post ahead of time and preschedule everything, but seat of the pants posting can be fun as well--I've done that too.

      Lee

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  28. Ooo, I hope you'll write about time travel somewhere along the way.

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    1. STR, I'm a huge time travel fan so it's likely something on the subject will pop up.

      Lee

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  29. For me, time is about planning something: what time should we leave? How long will it take to get there? How long will this take to bake? Thirty minutes for this math lesson, then fifteen minutes to practice, and then...Time is all about planning for me.

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    1. Susan K, planning is a big deal if we want to use time efficiently. Then there are those boring social engagements when I'll slyly ask my wife "What time should we leave?" She usually respond, "Now". She has a lower threshold for boredom and annoyance than I do in such places.

      Lee

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  30. I look forward to your 'Time' posts! It'll be refreshing to read that I'm not the only one who can't quite manage it wisely ;) Funny you should ask, but I had intended to throw in a little marketing this year (gasp!), before I entirely changed my mind about what theme to go with! On the road as I am just now, and intermittent internet notwithstanding, I'm halfway there and almost home! Where does the time go? ;-)

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    1. Diedre, marketing is a great theme that I've used in different ways more than once. But nothing wrong with changing ones mind.

      Lee

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  31. Personally, at my age, I do believe that time is moving faster. But that's probably just me.

    Looking forward to following your posts in the A-Z challenge. I know I won't get to them all but I'll hit as many as I can.

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    1. LD, no it's me too and everyone else as they get older. It's an illusion I know, but it sure feels real.

      Lee

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  32. I am the queen of procrastination and only just decided to do this year's challenge two days ago. Living on the edge!

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    1. C-Mom, last minute makes it all more exciting, more spontaneous.

      Lee

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  33. Oh, my! I do spend a lot of time thinking about time, more so as I get older and time is "running out" on various projects.

    In terms of time spent blogging, I definitely devote much more time to it during the month of April, thanks to the A to Z Challenge. And, usually after April is over, I want to continue my spree into May, June, July... and beyond! Have you ever thought about hosting another challenge later on in the year? (Even NaNoWriMo hosts Camp NaNoWriMo, in April and July!)

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    1. Laura, I've thought about hosting another Challenge, but until I get A to Z done the way I really want to do it, I don't want to think about anything else.

      Lee

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  34. I usually spend evening hours blogging. After I close my office around 8PM, and go on to write a daily post for Hollywood Spy, it is the mechanism I use to leave the job behind and enter the last few free hours of the day in a more relaxed way. I'd probably go crazy without it :)

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    1. Dezmond, blogging can be a nice escape if you're doing other things. As for me I need to find things to help me escape from blogging.

      Lee

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  35. Arlee, I know I speak for everyone in expressing gratitude for your vision and the dedication you have put into the challenge. I have learned a valuable time lesson from my Acholi friends in Uganda - they dont watch the clock or dwell on time; they give all of themselves to the moment and those in that moment.
    Wishing you the best with so much thanks.

    @moonie A Piece of Uganda

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    1. Leslie, I appreciate the sentiments. Living for now sounds so wonderful, but in the U.S. culture it can be so difficult when everyone else is also living by the clock.

      Lee

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  36. Another one saying "thank you" for starting this wonderful Challenge and for continuing to support it with your time, energy & enthusiasm. In my first year, I planned the subjects but didn't actually write the posts till the day before at the earliest. Last year, I wrote a goodly number in advance and still felt overly rushed with those I'd left till last. This year, they've all been written and my laptop died, causing me more than enough stress. I'm now looking forward to the process of visiting & commenting, knowing that my blogs are written & all I have to do is put up a link.

    Debs from
    @debsdespatches
    Bunny and the Bloke

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    1. Debs, without the participants the Challenge would not be much more than me blogging from A to Z alone during April. I'm thankful for all of the folks who put so much of their hearts and minds--and time!--into this Challenge.

      Lee

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Lee