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One Love: Jamaican blog tag

January 30, 2013

O goodness. The guilt. It has been almost a year since I blogged and so this tag was a timely prod. I have been so far removed from the blogosphere that I don’t have a solitary soul to tag…for shame.

Anyhoo, the tag comes with the responsibility of answering a questions about me’self and this wee blog:

1. Why did you give your blog its name? (If it is named directly after you, try and make your answer interesting. eg: Did you feel nervous at all about putting your name out there? Did you just lack creativity at the time?)

The blog address shumpynella is a childhood pet name – as we call it back on The Rock – or nickname from my auntie that stuck. Tidbits is the running header because that’s what this blog is…tidbits of me and my thoughts. Nothing too in depth but hopefully just enough to make reading it worthy of your time :)

I am tres tres nervous about having my full on government out there…I don’t actively hide it – this blog isn’t anonymous after all – but I am mindful about how much I mention it or blog about anything too too close to home such as specific work, school, or family issues. Privacy is key these days.

2. Why did you start blogging and why do you blog now?

I started blogging as a way to keep track of my thoughts (that literally go a mile a minute), chronicle bits of my life, and share my interests and opinions. My blog started as a private enterprise and evolved to being publicly view-able. Having it public limits what I am comfortable sharing it also reduces barriers to reading faced by friends and family. So now I know it’s my boring prose keeping them away (you know, versus accessing it being an inconvenience). Yes, I sometimes fancy a bit of self-deprecation.

3. Do you think being Jamaican influences your blogging style?

Absolutely. Even if I don’t blog about Jamaica or the West Indies in every post, being Jamaican is such an integral part of me, it can’t help but show up in all I do, think, and say.

4. What do you think about the increase in bloggers in Jamaica?

I think I need to get with the program! I couldn’t begin to tell you what’s going on where that is concerned. For example, I don’t know who these bloggers are, what they’re blogging about, etc. Regardless, I love that there is an opportunity to get a Jamaican perspective, that there are people writing and sharing thoughts, and that there is increasingly more to learn. I need to become a better blogger! Writing is one bit of it, but also reading and staying informed which I am not doing…

5. What is your favourite thing about being Jamaican?

My very favorite thing about being Jamaican is my experience growing up there and all I learned in that environment and being able to visit and experience it even now in adulthood. By experience I mean waking up and having to spread bed, being run out the house as a youngster because we just weren’t allowed to lay around the house, mango season, beach, Champs and watching other track & field, going to work with various aunties and helping with photocopying, etc, Devon House ice cream, Morning worship and afternoon prayers in prep and high school, excelsior crackers, lunch dates with mom and aunties, country trips, Dunns River, Somerset, and YS falls, grandparents baking pudding on the outside stove, dandy shandy, babysitting cousins and siblings, fresh hard dough, corn, and raisin bread, Jamaican KFC, jerk chicken, coconut water, extra lessons, soursop juice, Tastee patty, going to Little or Ward theater to experience Jamaican arts (drama, dance, music, comedy), light lock off, water scheduling, strict teachers, walking the plazas on Constant Spring Road, Heroes Weekend vacation, NEED I SAY MORE?

This all is imprinted on my mind and heart, and lives on…

6. Ackee and saltfish or “(mackerel) run down”?

Ackee and saltfish. Every time.

7. Stew peas or stew chicken?

Oh gee…decisions decisions. At one point, I might’ve said stew chicken but that’s cause I never had good stew peas. Now, definitely stew peas with all the trappings (well, as many as a pescetarian can have): saltfish, spinners, white rice, and fried plantains (probably the only place this is appropriate for me seeing as I don’t love it).

8. Tastee Patties, Juici Beef Patties or Mother’s?

Tastee all day e’ryday!! I honestly eat them all – we foreigners can’t be choosy now – but I’ve always loved Tastee’s best.

9. Pantucky or KFC?

Watch me show my blonde roots. By Pantucky, we mean pan chicken? If so, then def that! Because of who my mom is (veeeeeeery choosy), I’ve only had the real deal (not Faith’s Pen or Jerky’s) off the roadside somewhere at the foot of Red Hills once but BOY! Let me tell you. Don’t think about the details (you know, where the bathroom is and such), just savor the food and the softest, sweetest tasting bread you ever had.

10.What do you hope to be the future of blogging in Jamaica?

I know I blog as a hobby and I don’t quite expect much to come out of what I do. However, I know enough about blogging to value the information and education it provides, the sacrifice in time and at times safety and privacy some make to encourage and enlighten, and the diligence with which many blog. Knowing this, I can only hope that these people I describe gain the respect they deserve and keep on doing the good they do.

Instead of tagging, I’m going to point you to 7 other Jamaican blogs who have already been tagged so you and I can become more acquainted with the Jamaican blogosphere:

Alice Clare of Cucumber Juice

Mamachel of The Adventures of Mamachel

Annie of Active Voice

Gordon Swaby at Gordon Swaby

Nicky at Cinnamon Coffee

Chunchi at Chunchimina

Karin at YardEdge

I have this hope as an anchor for my soul, firm and secure.

May 11, 2012

My sole purpose on this earth is to love God, follow His direction, spread His word, and hate sin.

How do I go about doing that? Being honest, loving, thoughtful, and kind. Just like Jesus was. Being a witness. Witnessing with my lifestyle, my words, my talents. Keeping my eyes on Christ and shunning the very appearance of sin.

As I listen to the debate surrounding President Obama this week, I shake my head at those happy about what he said, at those angry at what he said, at those saddened by what he said. Why? Because to me, marriage is not something to be dictated by any country, state, or human. As far as I know, marriage is Biblical. Since the very beginning of Earth’s history with Adam and Eve. To me, the marriage certificate I collected from the city hall almost 6 years ago, and signed before witnesses was a legal contract. Not marriage. My marriage happened when God blessed the union and connection my husband and I share, the pledge we made to live our lives as dictated by The Word before God.  As far as I know, President Obama did not create the institution of marriage and has no power to change it. None of us do. We like to think we mere humans have power over the spiritual and divine when we don’t.

Read James 1

verses 19-21:19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

Read Colossians 3

verses 5-8: Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature:sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.[b] You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.


Confession is good for the soul

April 24, 2012

I was visiting my old blog and saw this oldie…it’s been updated. Enjoy!

Sometimes I am embarrassed to say or do things because they aren’t popular or aren’t the most positive. No more. Life is too short to waste it being insincere. I don’t mean you should be rude. Never. I just mean, you have to be true to yourself. Live your own truth.

Some of my confessions? Read at your own risk.
1. Blood is not always thicker than water. I don’t care what your chemistry teacher said. I’ve experienced it, so I know it. Sometimes people related to you can be the most poisonous. Give them wide berth.
2. Being cool among “friends” is overrated. I have always been the old fogie among my friends. I relish that. Boring to you, yes, but interesting to someone else. Or at the very least, my mom. Be you. It is essential.
3. Know-it-alls irritate me.  I love a good debate or conversation. If everything you say and believe is correct and nothing anyone has to say is important, shut up and go write a book.  I hear they don’t talk back.
4. Everyone isn’t perfect. I sometimes have too many expectations of people & myself. I have my faults: miserable, opinionated, and sensitive, yes. But I’m also friendly, honest, and kind. Give yourself and everyone else a break, Shumpy!
5. I laugh at people (& often these are inappropriate times to laugh). Yes. If they’re just having a bad hair day, or wearing a turquoise church suit…especially when they’ve been mean and karma is biting back. I don’t laugh at kids. Well, to their faces.
6. I abhor weirdness and weird people to the point that I don’t care if I’m rude, I don’t want to talk to you, see you, or be near you if you’re weird. Yup, it is the plague. Avoid.
7. I love the handful of friends I have like they were sisters of my own heart. Sometimes I downplay the depth of our friendship but that’s me being stupid (insert miserable Shumpy here) and fearful of being hurt (insert sensitive Shumpy here). I value them and love them dearly. The handful of them. I’ve been blessed.
8. I give off the impression that I’m a cool, calm, and collected gal but I’m quite emotional and can be touchy (ask those who’ve lived with me for any period in time). I also have a stunted range of emotions. Very limited. If you step on the wrong toe, one of a couple things will occur: cold silence or verbal anger. Take your pick. UPDATE: I don’t care so much about anything anymore. It is a rare person that can upset me these days. God has been so good to me – fixing my faults, making me stronger and more aware of just how little mere mortals can do.
9. People who feel entitled. Not entitled to fair and decent treatment. Entitled to other people kissing their arse and bending over backwards for them. Ewww. No. Me no likey. Those people can take their entitlement and stuff it.
10. I hate bubble busters. Dream killers. This world is dark enough without them. They start talking and I tune out. I belong to team YES I CAN. If you have heart, will power, and God. Yes, you can!
& bonus: I watch to stupidest, most brainless crap on TV sometimes. It’s a wonder I have any brain cells left (think Bridezillas (WE TV), Cut Off (VH1) and Real Housewives (BRAVO)). UPDATE: I am proud to say I am almost 2 years without cable and I couldn’t be happier. My brain is clear. 
Feel much lighter now.

Trayvon Martin

March 27, 2012

I won’t do a whole post on the Trayvon Martin murder. There are many and I don’t think I could say it better than mom, Jen Hatmaker or Alice Clare or most anyone in the blogosphere.

I do want to say this much: I don’t think that George Zimmerman necessarily shot Trayvon Martin in cold blood. I figure he was afraid. Fear made him follow what looked like a strange person in his vehicle. Fear made him call 9-1-1 after seeing that the strange person was black and male. Fear made him leave his vehicle, approach, and get into an altercation with a teenager. Walking. With Skittles. And iced tea. And a hoodie. Fear made him fatally shoot Trayvon. What was there to fear I wonder….


Us. Freedom Plaza, Washington, D.C.

The sadness goes deep. As does the hurt and upset.

Until the reason Trayvon Martin is dead is clear to every American and until we all do something about it,

We are all Trayvon Martin.

Also to Shaima Alawadi, may you be in peace. Your murder was also unwarranted. The price we pay for ignorance and prejudice is high.

I leave you with the Hon. Robert Nesta Marley

Happy birthday to the most Hon. Robert Nesta Marley

February 6, 2012

Taking a leap

February 3, 2012

Have you ever had to make a decision without knowing the outcome? I can tell you, it is a daunting thing. You make the decision, hoping and praying it’s the right one and then you wait.

Well, I applied to a doctorate program. I am waiting, hoping, and praying. Then, what? Then I will ideally begin study full time in the fall and God will provide an adequate part time salary for me. Let’s see what happens, shall we?

I went to The Word for encouragement, and what did I find?

“Casting all your cares on Him, for He careth for you” 1 Peter 5:7

“For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:15-16

“Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.” Psalms 55:22

Alright, alright, Lord. We got this.

Anybody here?

January 20, 2012

::taps softly on door::


Nobody? Ahhh. I’m not surprised. Tidbits has been a pretty lonely place recently. Well, I am tardy but here. Let me catch you up a bit.

I visited here briefly on my birthday. I am now 29 years of age. What a thing. This year is going to have to be different for me. It’s the last year of my 20s. Right now, I am dieting and exercising to finally rid myself of 20-25 lbs. I have a couple weddings and a long trip home on the horizon and I just had to make moves. I am glad I did. This is day 4 and I’m already 4 lbs down. My Insanity DVD pack came in the mail yesterday (well, really the husband’s) and I start the regimen on Sunday. Wish me luck.

We have a new member in our family. His name is Catch. He is a chocolatey and still growing Shih Tzu. He’s been a challenge to house train. He now completely crate trained (yay!!!) and is getting less timid. He loves outside (previously would run from every sound), and is chatty (I hope he barks less as he grows). Shih Tzus are supposedly hard to train (great pick, Shumps) but he will get there…isn’t he a cutie pie?

I had my mom, aunt, and cousin with me for the holidays. I must say. It was the very best time ever. I missed them so much after I took them to the airport. There really is NOTHING like family around.  Especially ones you love hehe. I hope to spend some quality time with my grandparents this summer – they are all aging and ill.

As we enter this election season here in the U.S. – I mailed my voter registration this morning (changing addresses) – I would like to say I am going to be very quiet. I have already been annoyed, I have already seen evidence that watching TV is going to result in high blood pressure. I am not trying to have that. I have promised myself I will read the respective websites to get information on their political past and platforms and use that with debates to get a grasp. Nothing else.

I digress.

I will make every effort to stay near. I have a lot going on and I don’t want my precious Tidbits to be left behind. Byeeeee!


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