I could gush about these two awards...honestly, I think I could probably gush for Australia. But you know...it's actually really hard to know what to say except thank you for these. I'll try though!
Thank you to two wonderful women who I don't know apart from in the blogosphere (but I very much wish I did); whose posts I never, ever, ever miss. Dash from The French Sampler gave me the Beautiful Blogger award and Jeanne from Collage of Life handed over the Happy 101..

I am honoured. Why? Because these women are intelligent, interesting, stylish, creative, thoughtful, fun, witty, thought provoking and so much more. I wish they didn't live on the other side of the world 'cause I'd be stalking them for sure (in a very nice and thoroughly appropriate way...can you stalk appropriately??) Do I feel like I deserve these awards...not really.  Am I going to take them...yes I am! 
If you haven't read Dash and Jeanne's blogs (and I'd be surprised if you hadn't) please go and do it. If you don't follow them already, you're mad...go on, hop to it (once you've read down to my very interesting fact at least!)
Playing by the rules of these awards...which, surprisingly I'm inclined to do...I'm meant to tell you seven things about me that you don't know (and quite frankly may not want to) and 10 things that make me happy. Now as well as gushing for Oz, I am also capable of going on...and on...and on....and.. I think it's in me to write a small blog novel if I were allowed. 
But, I won't...at least not today (I heard that collective sigh of relief). So what I thought I'd do...you can think a lot when you're at home sick, in between sleeping and answering work emails (knew the Crackberry was a bad idea!)...
...what I thought I'd do was honour the rules, but space it out a bit. A couple of things today, a few tomorrow...some next month...you know...ration me out (I just know I heard a yippee somewhere out there!!)
OK, ready...one thing you don't know about me. Starting with the glamorous stuff first because it's all downhill from here I assure you. I was at their wedding...those two below...
That, bloggy peeps in case you didn't know, is the King and Queen of Jordan on their wedding day. This is an official photo because I wouldn't dream of invading their privacy by posting a personal one. My friend Mary in Canada who reads this blog was there too and she'll confirm (hi Mary). See the soldier in the background? He parachuted into the palace grounds with the sword you see them cutting the cake with...awesome but highly risky in my humble opinion. And I was in the Army and I've jumped out of a plane (once) so I should know! And in case you're wondering why I was there...my ex-husband spent 12 months studying with (the now) King Abdullah at the Army Staff College in Camberley UK in 1990 (what a cracker of a year that was!!). Look, the staff college crest...owls have been in forever...

Come on...admit it...that was quite interesting.
And one thing that makes me very happy? (apart from the obvious MGM, the first born and the 22 year old...and the order is interchangeable depending on how nice they're being). Notice how I left out the vampire slayer who is never nice!
...books, books and more books...how I wish I had a book tree like this. I think that I could have rescued the ailing economy of a small nation with all the money I've spent on books in my lifetime, of all kinds. And magazines. But I justify my consumerism by telling myself that I am supporting an art form...and I am. One of my strongest childhood memories though is going to the local library every week with my dad all through my growing up years in Newcastle...this is my favourite home town beach...Nobby's...where I spent many an hour trying to impress the boys and get a tan (both spectacularly unsuccessfully)
Dad and I and my big sister would get out six books each (the maximum allowed) and read, and read, and read.  Much to the annoyance of my mother who we shamefully left with all the work and who didn't actually start to love reading until she was in her mid 60's...now you can't stop her!
I will pass these awards on...but I want to think about it a bit more, because, of course...I want you all to have them...but that's probably not the same as being given one...and I know how good that feels.
Did I say thanks! And thanks also to everyone who left a comment for me when I was a bit sickly yesterday. Starting to feel better, and yes...the 22 year old did look after me quite well. He's not silly!
Come back tomorrow and I'll show you a small project...that doesn't involve silver leaf, but was tricky in its own sweet way!
images by me and google...you'll know which is which I'm sure. And if you don't you'll forgive me...I'm still not 100%...cough!

...and at the risk of sounding like a broken record...don't forget to enter the giveaway