The Bella Sinclair Award

Within the four corners of my desk is a small rectangular piece of machine, fragile and dependent on unseen electrical currents and programs. It yields to the power of Zeus when he throws extreme thunderbolts and it answers to an even higher power, our seven-month old family pet, Daisy. It is something that connected me everyday to someone very dear in Tokyo and connects me now to another in New Jersey; to Savannah; to
Escondido; to Winnipeg; to Sydney and Vienna. Most of these connections are with women who share the English language and an interest in art. I blog.
In the blogs, I receive enormous satisfaction when I see Arija's blazing sunrises and sunsets and read her prose and poetry; when I read Renee's cancer treatment journal where she struggles and perseveres and then inspires; when Manon shares the painting of her women with intense gazes and the bucket of gesso she spilled on her studio floor; when Silke shares her new painting; when I see Linda furiously paint with her finger; when I see BT's garden; when I see Aimee's fascinating word art; and read of Deborah being so proud of Pfc Ryan, understandably so; and smile at Baino’s
intense dissertations; when I see Marie’s incredible clay sculptures and Diana Evan’s colorful cupcakes; when Bimbimbie gazes at the vaticinating moon and then there's Bella Sinclair, Bella whose art exudes joy and mirth that one cannot deny that life is beautiful! If I had no tangible reason to blog before, I do now.
Bella Sinclair is on leave from blogging while she resettles to her new home after a most anticipated return to the US from Japan, only to be punctuated by the tragic and sudden loss of her husband, days before their return flight. Her friends in blogworld wish her and her daughters the best and send them prayers for the healing of their pain and sorrow which is paramount. If one wants to find evidence of a sisterhood in the blogs, just visit Bella's blog.
I designed this award to celebrate art in the blogs and to honor the value of friendship, sisterhood, sharing and caring. It is to be awarded to the gifted, accomplished, eloquent and talented blogger whose friendship and influence inspire us to do our best. That I named it after Bella Sinclair is because she epitomizes all of these things. She is an inspiration to many of us.


I have chosen to symbolize this award with the Quercus lobata or Valley Oak. It is a simple and unadorned award but heavy on meaning. The Valley Oak is a large handsome tree with a stout and sturdy trunk and widely spreading branches that form a broad open crown. It can reach up to a height of 100 feet and a diameter of 4 feet, sometimes much greater. It is the largest of the western deciduous oaks and is a handsome and graceful shade tree.

Like the spread and beauty of the Valley Oak, Bella Sinclair is an extremely gifted and talented artist who is much beloved. Her art reveals enormous creativity, skill and artistry and oozes with life and joy. As a blogger, her demeanor is jovial and unassuming, her comments filled with amity. She is thoughtful, eloquent, lighthearted, sensitive, serious and funny. She is a mental ninja, an accomplished intellectual and professional, an academe before she concentrated on taking care of her epsilons and now a widely admired artist. In the blogs she is supportive and caring. She is a source of inspiration to many and most especially to me.
I hope that when Bella returns, this award would have already circulated in the blogs. It is my honor to give this award to the first recipients who I hope will find the same pleasure as I have in spreading its crown, giving shade and the comfort of friendship and caring and of sisterhood by sharing this award with their blog-friends and sisters!.

and most of all may Bella find her way here someday when she is ready to return and accept this award:
The Oaks Of BlogWorld (2)


Renee said...

Ces it is beautiful.

And I especially love that I know that one day soon Bella will find her way right here to collect her very own award made by her very own sister-friend.

Love you Ces


Renee said...

What a wonderful list of recepients. I am honoured Ces and it is already on my blog.

I love you for making this for Bella because she is everything you say she is all of the time.

Love Renee xoxoo

TattingChic said...

What a truly lovely award for a beautiful friend and Artist! I loved this post. Thank you so much for the honor of sharing this with me! I will accept it with great honor and love for my Dear friend, Bella and my new friendship with you, Ces! I am truly deeply touched!

Ces said...

Renee, thank you for accepting it. When I think of sisterhood, there you are! I hope this pleases Bella, she is rather self effacing and does not want attention to herself but I cannot deny her, she is the epitome of frindship and sisterhood.

TattingChic, thank you. you are welcome. I know you and Bella are very good friends!

Manon Doyle said...

I am so, so honored to be a recipient of the Bella Sinclair Award!
Bella is an extraordinary woman and she inspires me constantly.
Ces, thank you girlfriend for even thinking of me.
I will post this on my next blog.

Ces said...

Manon, thank you very much. Talking of extraordinary, you should see one everyday when you look in the mirror!

aimee said...

this is a beautiful tribute and so fitting for bella. of course i'm honored to accept it!

Dusik said...

Ces!!! this is amazing!

i have always admired the beauty of your soul, how you paint beautiful pictures with oils and words. you are a true artist and a great friend!

thank you so much for this award. i am so thankful!


the award itself is beautiful! i have always admired your trees, but this one is magical! i don't have enough ways to express how much i admire your creativity and this award...

Bella is a true artist. i am looking up to her.

thank you

Baino said...

Oh Ces, I just took a break from housework and there you are. It's a lovely award and I am blessed and honoured to be included in such illustrious and illustrative company. I paint with words but am proud to be part of your artistic sisterhood. That's one of the sweetest posts I've ever read and I don't give compliments often. You're fabulous and I'm sure all of us are supremely touched!

Having been where Bella is now, I know what she's feeling and she will need her sisters more in 12 months time than right at the moment when she's surrounded by people real and virtual. I wish her healing and love, it's a terrible transition but with the help of those she loves, it can be done. I'm living proof!

Thank you darling, this means a lot.

Marie S said...

Oh, Ces you are such a good friend and this is a beautiful tribute to your friend Bella who is a good friend to you!
I am so honored to be a part of the love that you share and show for each other.
I humbly accept this Bella Sinclair award and I feel blessed to be in the company of all these first and deserving women.
Ces, you have made my day, thank you so very very much.
I love you,

Arija said...

Ces, I am so honoured to be ounted anong your friends and included in this beautiful and very meaningful award.Odd that you should choose the tree that above all others symbolises who I am.
Thank you my dear for the caring thoughts that envelop Bella in her loss and Renee in her need and strength. In that, I stand firm in the sisterhood right beside you.

linda cardina said...

oooh ces, i just love you. u are a very sweet friend. the award is a beautiful one. i will accept it with honor.

thinking about u and bella constantly.

Love you Ces.


Karin Bartimole said...

A beautiful award, tribute, and honoring to Bella and all she represents Ces!

buckram and bembo said...

indeed bella deserves this award.her drawings make me smile.its an antidepressant.

Caroline said...

Ces, what a beautiful start to my day! I am so honoured to receive this wonderful Bella award. I am sure she will be touched and delighted when she finds it here. You are such a kind and caring person Ces - always there with words and artwork for your friends - epitomised here in this post.
I love that you've created one of your magnificent trees for the award. Thank you Ces, I am delighted to accept and be part of this award in the company of so many bloggers I admire.

Vanessa Brantley Newton said...

Dear Ces, I was moved to tears this morning as I read your message left on my blog. I am both honored and filled with much thankfulness. My heart is aching right along with the rest of you beautiful souls. I hurt for Bella and the girls. You know that I love you beautiful and talented Ladies so very much. That I'm even counted with you all is an honor in itself. I pray that healing will come. With friends like you and Renee and a host of other and myself, we will support her and keep her encouraged. This is very heavy, but I do know this one thing. When life gives us lemons, and trust me, I have had a whole pitcher of them, you learn to make lemonade and either get busy living or get busy dying. I know that her husband would want her to live her BEST life now!!! Ces thank you for showing your love and kindness because it has touched me in such a wonderful and special way. Look at all of us becoming a family. It's overwhelming and beautiful at the same time. Sending you much love and thanks today my sister. Be well.
Love, V

Bimbimbie said...

Why thank you Ces, a wonderful symbol you chose for celebrating the branches of friendship in the wonderworld of blogdom.

One day, when the time is right, I know we will be seeing a little Bella and Ces sitting side by side on a leaf laden branch within one of your magical drawings.

Smiles to you dear Ces*!*

Tessa said...

It’s true, isn’t it … that the basic premise of sisterhood is the unity of women and our ability to display cohesiveness in tackling problems, reaching goals and encouraging and inspiring one another. The amazing thing, too, is that there’s space within sisterhood for the subtle differences that challenge and delight. It is dreams shared, goals achieved and most of all, it’s counting on others and being counted on. It’s real.

Ces, I’m am touched beyond words to be counted amongst the people you hold dear to you in this wondrous loop of blog connections which lead, ultimately, to friendships that are solid and enduring. Although I don’t know Bella very well, I have always loved reading the exchanges between you and your dear friend. I do know enough to have realized that Bella is a star who shines very brightly indeed and I shall wear this special Award on my blog with great pride. And I will always remember – and keep close to my heart – what it stands for. Thank you, Ces. Thank you very much.

Silke said...

Ces, I don't know what to say - I am so honored to receive this award! It has so much meaning and I will be so happy to pass it on! Thank you!! You've touched my heart! And the art on the award is just gorgeous! What a tree!! And what a symbol!

Hugs, Silke

Ribbon said...

Congratualtions to all the recipients and to you Ces for creating a beautiful award.

I've just arrived here for the first time and am about to further view your blog.

best wishes

Kaili (Billy and Button) said...

Thankyou so much Ces for thinking of me as one of the first recepients of this beautiful award. I am truly grateful for you and the friendship and support I have found in blog land and this award represents that. Im love Bella and Im so glad she has you as a close friend, and the support from fellow artists. I will post this in my next entry. Thankyou xx

laughingwolf said...

thx for the bella update, ces... have been wondering how she's doing with the girls....

Ces said...

Hello Laughingwolf, I wish them well too!

Hello Kaili, thank you, you are welcome. it's wonderful to read about the caring and special connections in the blog. Very intangible but real. Now you can spread the inspiration.

Oh Silke, you are so welcome. You are so special yourself too. Anyone who has an avatar teasing
hungry bloggers who blog instead of eat, must have a great sense of humor. Seriously, I never even had second thoughts about you getting this award, you so deserve it.

Hello Ribbon, welcome. Have I seen you somewhere before? Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment. Welcome!

Ces said...

Oh Tessa, you are so sweet. You nailed it right on the head about the sisterhood. It one characterized by mutual respect, not necessarily uniformity in beliefs and philosophies, we are all so different and stand on so many points within the spectrum of humanity but there are a few unspoken rules that we follow. These rules are set by individual bloggers and who knows maybe we find the ones who share the same rules and believe in the same premise:

Recognition of boundaries
Acknowledgement of personal space

You are one of my very few favorites, in case you did not know.

Ces said...

Hello Bimbimbie, ah yes, this one needed a botanical reasearch! Ha! Thank you and you are welcome.

Ces said...

Oh vanessa, you are wonderful. I just love seeing your avatar wherever I go. You are like a dose of bread-spectrum antibiotic for a sick person, ooh that is too clinical...you are a ray of sunshine. Seriously Vanessa, I could not give this award without your name on the recipient list. It would have been lacking. Have fun on your vacation, or are you working you patoots off?

Ces said...

Caroline, I hope she will after she blushes and burries her head in the sand. You are welcome Caroline and thank you for accepting it.

Ces said...

BB, yes! Bella's art is:

-- Better than Prozac, Zoloft, Zanax and Valium!

-- like hot sauce on chicken enchalada without the acid reflux!

-- like a cold shower on 106 degree heat index day

-- like a New York bagel with cream cheese

-- or New Jersey pizza

-- like buiscuit and gravy with zero calorie

-- like grilled halibut drizzled with Frescobaldi Laudemio extra virgin olive oil, garlic and lemon...

I am hungry, all I have is SPAM!

Ces said...

Hello Karin, thank you very much! Yes, she is!

Ces said...

Hello Linda, thanks for stopping by. I hope you are doing well. I am thinking of you too. Take care.

Ces said...

Thank Marie, for thinking that I am a good friend, I try but fail miserably a lot of times.

Ces said...

Baino, housework!? What the heck is that? :)

Ah yes, you actually used the word "sweet" I think for the first time ever?

Hmn, you are slacking in your officiousness.

Yes, if anyone understands and know the pain, you would and look at you. You are so cool!

Ces said...

Dusik, you are always so sweet! Thank you so much! I don't deserve everything you said.

Aimee, thank you so much. It means a lot to me!

Ces said...

Ah Arija, you are a different kind of oak. You belong to the class of the Angel Oak at St. Johns (no apostrphe)Island in South Carolina, 1,400+ years old. Not that you are old but your wisdom is ancient and you are my Live Oak, quercus virginianus, magnificnet, spreading and evergreen, does not shed its foliage and with branches constantly reaching out and enveloping.

Sarah said...

Oh Ces that is beautiful!! I know she will love it when she returns!! Huge hugs to you, Sarah

Deborah said...

Oh, Ces! My heart is beating so hard it can be heard without a stethoscope. I feel I do not belong among these incredibly talented women, and yet you chose me, and honor does not begin to describe what I feel. **weeps tears of JOY** In you, Renee, Bella, and so many of your incredible friends I found the substance to fill a hole in my heart. Now my heart is overflowing. May I say that I adore you, Ces, in a completely non-Brokeback Mountain way. I humbly thank you. Golly gosh, I feel so special. I promise to always use spellcheck. Sending you all my love, Deborah

Arija said...

Thank you for your belief in me my dear.
Your lovely award gave me the impetus to post it and some others straight away. I actually managed the links all by myself...I hope I haven't got brain strain!
I wish I could find an award worthy of you, I may have to extend myself and make one myself, just don't hold your breath, I'm a slow starter.

BT said...

Ces, I was really choked up when I read that wonderful blog post. What a delight to feel so in touch with such talented women. A Bella Sinclair award. What a wonderful gift and I am honoured, truly, to accept it with love and gratitude. I do hope Bella is feeling all our love and positive thoughts. She is with us every day, as are you, dear Ces. Thank you for thinking of me.

BT said...

Ces, I forgot to say how beautiful your artwork is for this award. I just love it. When I worked for the bank, one of the best advertisements they had was of an oak tree, with the logo 'our roots are our branches'. How true that is of our little group.

Deborah said...

Don't tell hubby I am in the office again! Needed to send a special 4th of July message to Ryan...I also want to comment on the incredible art work on your award. I love the roots at the very bottom. It brings to mind a favorite Maya Angelou quote, "No one comes from the earth like grass. We come like trees. We all have roots". Roots intertwined among the roots of true friends. So beautiful.
Love, Deborah

Snowbrush said...

It's a beautiful award--and a beautiful photo of New York harbor too.

Ces said...

Thank you Snowbrush.

Yes, deborah, we must have roots shall we? And I would not mind if mine intertwined with the best of humanity.

BT, I think she will when she returns although, as I said, she does not want any attention focused on her so it's a good thing I did this when she is away?

A quercus virginianus it is for you then Arija.

RockerJewlz said...

How lovely...and deserving...and true.

Such a Wondrous Place this Faery Space said...

I have just been awarded this award by Silke! I can't wait to put it on and look at the next link to find the inspiration for your creating such an award. Blessings from Amy Sperry Faldet

Indigene said...

It is quite amazing, much like the artist! What a blessing you are! My prayers are with Bella and her darlings.

Diana Evans said...

Oh my heavens CES!!! just when I think you have the biggest heart in the world ...you go and grow it again....you are such a sweetheart and I feel very blessed to be among your friends here....


I am catching up and have missed so much here...I think I need to check out your cooking now ....

Artistic Accents by Darla said...

Beautiful award!!! I just received it from Silke and had to stop and read more about it. Just wonderful! Thank you!

yoon see said...

Thank you Ces, you got a big heart and reading this special entry and award for Bella, my tears rolling down! It's my honour to receive such beautiful and meaningful award from you.
You take care too, love your new header:)

Draffin Bears said...

Ces, thank you so much.
This means so much to me and it would be an honour and so wonderful to be able to put this Bella award on my blog.

Love your post ~ Bella, Renee and now you are such incredible and strong Women and I am glad that I have got to know you all a little here. Look forward to coming back to visit you.


debbie said...

Dear Ces,
I was given this beautiful award and I googled and tried to find out who Bella Sinclair was......as well did the precious lady Queenmother Mamaw who gave me this award
Now that I know I cannot walk in the footsteps of this awesome woman.......I am a devout lover of all kinds of art which I know opens the soul to healing.
It is a pleasure to know a woman who would do such a thing for a friend who inspired her so.
I am so sorry for the loss of her husband and will be praying for her and her daughter.
God Bless and keep you sweet lady
Angel hugs

Anonymous said...

I am touched by the meaning of this beautiful award and most grateful have received it too. I do pray that Bella and her daughter will find peace and comfort in their sorrow. May she feel lifted up by the thoughts of her sisters here and come back safely to us real soon.

kathi said...

Sorry. I'm not really anonymous. Just grabbed a potato chip and hit the wrong key!

Anonymous said...

I was just given this award from my friend Judi (www.curiousjudi.com)and through it discovered your blog and Bella's. What interesting, entertaining, profound people you both are, and what beautiful art comes from your hands! I am very happy to meet both of you.


Isabel said...

Arija passed your original and heartfelt award to me, and now that I know the story behind it I am even more thankful to her and honored to receive it.
Bella's difficult time touches one's heart. I am sure your creation of this award not only will touch her deeply but will bring to her blog step many kindred spirits who wish her and her girls well and send positive energy their way. You are very talented and have a wonderful heart. I'll surely return to visit.



jcdillustration said...

Ces, it is so beautiful. What a perfect way to express how Bella has touched so many lives. Hugs hugs hugs!