This is the second in a series for those interested in blogging. BLOGGING IS LIKE FISHING and of course I return to my childhood days and try to “catch” your attention by fishing around a little. Please join me on the blog with some interesting analogy of how we prepare for our blogging fishing trip. For all of you who would like to dabble your hook and line by guest blogging on my blog, please contact me and let’s go down to the fishin’ hole. #blog #amwriting #life #bloggers #writers #tipsforblogging


BLOGGING IS LIKE FISHING is my second blog post on why I blog, how I blog, and most importantly, how you can blog. For those who read my blog on a regular basis, first let me thank you. Without you the reader, this early morning work would be better spent with some extra zzzz’s. Now for the good stuff all of you writers, the mystique of blogging is similar to going fishing. When I was young, I went fishing with my Dad or a group of family members. For some reason, I never wanted to go alone but enjoyed the sharing of excitement of interacting with others.
As I usually do, I will associate my blogging experience to a good fishing trip that we came home with a bucket full of fish and had a fish fry. Let’s see how we can go down to that ole fishing hole (blogging world) and pull some of those scrumptious fish (readers) in with our bait (blog).
  • 1) First, you have to have the desire or want to go fishing attitude. Blogging takes dedication and some time is required  to get ready to fish or as we are doing, blogging.
  • 2) Set aside some time to write the blog post each day. I find that I am more creative early in the morning, but this might not be the best time for you to “fish”. There is no set time but there has to be regularity to prepare and for fishing (blogging).
  • 3) Decide what you need to make the fishing trip successful. I will break down what I use to wet my blogging hook so you get an idea.

a) Fishing pole or reel is your niche or your market. In other words, what kind of reader do you want to reel in with your blog. Example: Foodies, Sport fans, fashionistas, spiritual or more newsie types. As my Daddy always told me you make sure you have a strong enough pole to catch the big ones. It may not be the best comparison but you want to appeal and draw the right audience to your blog.

b) The right size hook is vital. Too big of a hook may scare off the best fish or reader out there by overkill. Decide if you want to be a sizzle or a fizzle blogger. What do I mean by that expression? A sizzle blogger is usually young and has a lot to say. This is the type hook you may need if you are writing the blog to catch fashionistas, trendsetters, groupies,  They want the bling, bling and the photos and quick reads. It is more dazzle than deep set ideas. On the other hand the set hook will draw the harder to catch but worth the effort reader as they become the loyal followers or readers. They crave the research you put into the blog.

c) The bait….oh yes…..the bait is You. On a blog you put yourself on the line or hook. You get jabbed and prodded but it is a piece of yourself which is the attraction. Add a little personality, develop your own style. Don’t get all politically correct and if you do as I do write your blog from your heart and throw in a little fact and research to enhance the topic. People love to feel they know you, the blogger, and they need to feel you want to know them. Reply to comments, thank your readers, and always represent what you truly are.

d) The bucket to keep your fish or readers in is your platform. There are many platforms and we will cover those choices pro and con in another session but it is important that the platform or bucket is safe and will keep the readers comfortable.

I thought you might find it ironic but when I googled how to write engaging posts, Google provided me with the following tips and the first one caught my eye with the use of HOOK.
  1. Hook Them With The First Sentence. …
  2. 2. Make Every Word, Phrase & Sentence Count. …
  3. Shorten Your Sentences, If Possible. …
  4. Use Simple, Yet Precise, Words. …
  5. Play With Analogies. …
  6. Throw In A Few Pop Culture References. …
  7. 7. Make Your Post Unique (Even If The Idea Isn’t) …
  8. End With A Punchy Conclusion.

As I take a little time from my usual posts, I want to encourage new writers to try your hand writing, whatever the source or style. Try your hand at a short story, a poem, prose, or just write like I do. Express yourself in ways which are outlets for communication. A blog is summed up as in the excerpt from How to Write a Blog Post (with link to article for reading):


Today, people and organizations of all walks of life manage blogs to share analyses, instruction, criticisms, and other observations of an industry in which they are a rising expert.

I recommend this article link very highly if you are serious about starting your blog or even for those of us who always are looking for better ways to keep the blog going. So grab that fishing pole and go fishing (or blogging).

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LIVE LIFE, LOVE LIFE, AND LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST whether it be writing, drawing, crafting, woodworking, speaking, cooking, or whatever floats your boat.



(C) Copyright 2012-2019 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material including photos are sourced to original location if known for credit reference.




HOW DID I START BLOGGING? Several people who have the talent to write interesting and heart felt messages have inquired about blogging or writing. I take a few minutes and recognize a classmate and author who encouraged me when I didn’t know what a “blog” was. Peggy Mercer, children’s book author as well as other genre writing put the thought in my mind and warned me that it takes dedication to keep up a blog. Going into the 7th year of Sipping Cups of Inspiration seen in almost 80 countries and over 1000 posts, she may feel I am up to blogging. Here we were in 2013 at her book signing GREW UP LOVING ELVIS. I have decided to encourage others by offering guest blogger spots on the blog. Try it, you may like it. #blog #amwriting #blogging #authors #PeggyMercer #life


HOW DID I START BLOGGING? It is not a big mystery and not that hard to start blogging or writing a book. It is the dedication behind this endeavor as any other attempt to accomplish a goal. I truly started the blog on a whim by a former classmate of mine who had read my posts on facebook. Peggy Mercer who had written a blog and has written several children’s books as well as varied genres suggested I start a blog. Those of you who have heard this story is I asked her “What is a blog?”  I had heard the word but had no clue. I was writing on my first novel and wasn’t even sure what to do with it at the time the conversation occurred.

With my work, I had learned to research online so what did I do? I googled “BLOG” and by the end of that day at the end of 2012, I wrote and published my first blog on blogspot.com That’s right 6 years completed and now my blog Sipping Cups of Inspiration has entered its 7th year. Can I count how many times I have thought about stopping the blog? Too many to count….still writing as you can see. What makes me keep going? It is an outlet of thoughts, a haven for sentimental journeys, a place to “hang” my hat and a reward of accomplishment of consistent writing. Thank you Peggy Mercer for your encouragement, you said I had to be willing to be dedicated to keep blogging.

One of the first blog posts that I can still find is the following


TODAY THE WORDS are OUT ON A LIMB.  How many of us, when we were children, climbed a tree and sat on a limb? We seemed so fearless in those days and climbed, swung, hung by our heels, and thought we could fly at times. It amazes me when I reflect on those times how few broken bones came from those adventures. If now, we would see a child climbing like we did, we would freeze in fear and try to get them to climb down. Is the reality of fear the difference; we didn’t see fear then; we see fear now? Do any of you remember how farther it seemed we could see from the limb rather from the ground? It was empowering to say the least. Was it fearlessness or a lack of experience of how dangerous it could have been? One weak limb and down we could have fallen to the ground. We laughed and encouraged each other to climb higher or go farther out on the limb. Now for the deeper thought…..in our lives are we willing to go “out on a limb” for each other? How many times do we care enough to do something for someone that is unexpected? Do we listen with caring ears when someone is sharing painful thoughts or do we just “uh huh” them to death? Do we ask what we can do to help? Do we volunteer our help without having to get in all of their business? Do we go “out on a limb” for a stranger in need? I saw a news flash about a boy that when he was only 7 years old and had seen a homeless man with a sign that read “Need a meal” has built an organizational food bank with his friends (same age) and has raised over $20,000 and is definitely a person who has gone “out on a limb”. I heard his words and they stuck with me, “You are never too tall or too small to make a difference”. I want to be even more willing to help others and climb high enough to see the ones in the distance that can use our help and crawl out on the limb! Have a day that allows you to go “out on a limb” for someone who needs our help. If you are out on the limb needing help, find trust and hope in God as He is the Power who encourages us to go out on the limb to help you. 
Romans 11:17
King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;

(c) copyright 2012 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.

Encouragement from several friends at my first book signing. Most of them read the blog too.

There is something timeless about those first blog messages as when I read this one after copying it to this message, I realized how appropriate this should be the message I chose. I have recently been encouraging some people to write more, possibly start a blog, write a book, or even speak to audiences. Oh, I am no pro by any stretch of the word but I can recognize a talent of communication when I hear it or see it. I write because I love to communicate thoughts or innovate, motivate, inspire, and encourage. In other words, even from 2013, I love going out on a limb. If you only want to start a blog for financial gain, unless you have an awesome niche, I would shy away. Write because you love to write. LIVE LIFE, LOVE LIFE, AND LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST by doing what inspires you personally and through that personal love, you will inspire others.

Note to potential bloggers/writers: I will dedicate a few blogs on how to get started but wanted to preface this task with a personal message. More ideas to come soon……until we blog again……Arline L Miller, author and blogger of Sipping Cups of Inspiration.



(C) Copyright 2012-2019 Arline Miller, Sipping Cups of Inspiration, with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material, including photos, is sourced to original location if known for credit references.



I MAY BE OLD BUT AM I WISE is the topic for some deep thinking and I pull from some interesting articles on How to Think Deep and How to Have Difficult Conversations. Put on your thinking cap and come to the blog with me. Please share the blog with others for round table discussions. #blog #deepthinking #lessons #life #discussion #amwriting


I MAY BE OLD BUT AM I WISE is a question we should ask ourselves. Do we learn as we go or do we make a stubborn stand against the new ideas in the world? Yes, I am going down this road of thought in an openminded manner and hopefully all of us will search our minds for either agreement or disagreement.

To begin this journey, I want to start at a young age of thinking and see if we can relate to the snags and pitfalls we find ourselves during our youth and how it either matures or petrifies our method of thinking. I have always been an independent thinker and this independency offered opportunities as well as pitfalls.

Independent Thinkers are analytical and witty persons. They are normally self-confident and do not let themselves get worked up by conflicts and criticism. They are very much aware of their own strengths and have no doubts about their abilities.

Independent thinkers are refreshing. They use their own lens to filter information and inform their thoughts. Independent thinkers don’t allow other people’s thinking to become their thinking. They don’t adopt information “as is.”

It takes courage to have your own thoughts. Saying something different from the majority or the loud minority can make you vulnerable to attack. An urge to remain silent to feel safe is what makes people vulnerable to groupthink, which can discourage originality or accountability.

Leaders do not look for safety in numbers. They follow the route that allows them to remain true to themselves and that garners credibility and respect. Advocate for yourself, and demonstrate your leadership. Here are five ways you can become (or remain) an independent thinker:

1. Read.

Reading other people’s words exposes you to their thoughts. Expand your mind by listening to what other individuals have to say. Intentionally seek out articles or books that you might otherwise avoid. Leaders challenge their own views by listening to others.

2. Identify the other argument.

Play devil’s advocate, and challenge your views. Ask yourself, “What if the opposite was true, as well?” Leaders recognize that other people’s perspectives can be right, too.

3. Interact with people who are different than you.

Put yourself out there, and interact with people who may not hold the same views as you. Consider engaging with people of a different age, race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, political affiliation or socioeconomic level.

If you know of an individual that has different opinions, ask them to coffee. Make the meeting brief and informal. Don’t feel the need to hash out the issues or iron out your differences in your first conversation. First, get to know the person. You may find commonalities that you were unaware of and to which you can relate. This may help you to be more open to their views and be less attached to your original thinking.

4. Travel.

Open your mind to different cultures and experiences, and enhance your life experience. Go to different parts of your country, as well as foreign countries. Connect with people. Stay in locally owned hotels. Take public transportation. Go to a local market. Travel like a local. Live, even if it is brief, like someone else. Open your eyes to another world.

5. Focus on respect.

If you want to be liked, you risk following what other people do or think. Strive for respect. Leaders take the road less traveled. The path may not be as smooth, but respect and leadership do not come easily.

Do your own thinking. Don’t follow others because it is the easy or safe option. Strength doesn’t come in numbers. Strength comes in one’s ability to have and express one’s views.

This is an interesting article but let’s look a little further into independent thinking and some consequences if misused. This is what I have set aside some time to ponder. Can independent thinking be harmful? Independent thinkers may find it more beneficial to add their thoughts to a group instead of exhibiting a stubbornness of pushing a single thought down others’ throats. Collective thought discussions, giving and taking points is a far better way to define measures. Debates are debates but group discussions allowing many ideas with welcome minds can be more productive.

All of us have ideas, some are more hesitant to share those ideas. In the article I noticed one major impact point, FOCUS ON RESPECT. None of us are going to agree 100% of the time. It brings me to the dress image that went around for a while as to what color was the dress. Sometimes, it is perception more than visual that we find our opinions based.



How to Have Difficult Conversations

Follow these guidelines for challenging encounters and fighting “fair.”

Posted Mar 13, 2017



Today we are blessed to feature a guest blogger who expanded her thoughts from a recent blog and Sipping Cups of Inspiration has been inspired. Please join us as Donna Childre gives us some thought provoking words in FINDING PEARLS IN UNEXPECTED PLACES. Thanks Donna for your pearls of wisdom. #blog #life #lessons #amwriting #love


A few days ago, I wrote a blog message about Life’s A Strand of Pearls and one of my writer friends mentioned that she has been thinking about Pearls of Wisdom. She expanded this message but in a slightly different direction. I think you will enjoy her thoughts and asked her to return as a guest blogger today. Here is Donna Childre’s message Finding Pearls in Unlikely Places

Buddy and Shirley Vaughn, parents of Donna Childre. Mrs. Shirley with her beautiful pearls.

Worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness. Psalm 29:7

Seek His face; seek His kingdom. After all, He is the Good Shepherd and He knows the way through any wilderness. Life is a highway and it teaches us as we go. The choices we make as to who we follow make all the difference.

I want to be healthier, wealthier (not speaking of material wealth either), and wiser in 2019. It is my desire to allow myself to be filled with more love, peace, and joy. My hope is in the Lord and He is the Leader I choose to follow.

I’ve been thinking a lot about pearls of wisdom thanks to a blog written by Arline Lott Miller. I actually considered writing a piece myself about pearls but my prayers and meditations sent me off on a whole different tangent. As I said to Cuz Dean Hill, I had a brain explosion and still can’t seem to pull in all the fragments to assemble an understandable discourse. I just know I’m getting wiser.

One of the “pearls” I’ve learned along the way came from a mother much younger than I am, a most unlikely place when you’re thinking wisdom. In a roundabout way, it came from her husband. She posted about wanting to go to her baby’s fresh grave. Her husband told her that their baby was not in that pile of dirt. Amanda Amanda Nicole Pittman

I realized that was the way I feel about my Mama and Daddy. They are not in that pile of dirt where their earthly bodies rest. They are dancing in heaven. However, the most important revelation for me was that they are in my blood. Like Jesus, I take them everywhere I go. They are always with me. I never felt Daddy stronger than when I was recently in Nashville listening to the music he loved. I felt right at home. I feel Mama in my kitchen when I fry toast and I see her in the blooms of her African violet that sits on my windowsill. I also smell her when I spritz myself with the fragrance of the perfumes she left. I feel Jesus when I study His Word and thank Him for my blessings.

The key to making a journey that honors God is to collect the pearls. They come from our heritage, they come from the people whose paths cross ours, and they come from studying God’s Word. They are in the most ordinary places if you allow yourself to slow down and look. We must become experts at following Christ’s footsteps. We do that by paying attention and practicing. The journey can be smooth even through the toughest terrain.

God gives us directions and He’s given us a good Leader to follow. Thank God for good directions and turnip greens. 🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶

The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. Psalm 23:1 Worship Him in His splendor and His majesty! Thank Him for the family He placed you in and the friends He’s allowed you to meet. Praise ye, the Lord! Hallelujah!



Blogger Notes: Thank you Donna for your insightful message. Let us continue looking for pearls wherever we are blessed to find them. I received a note from Donna this morning after she woke and said that she realized that both she and her sister wore pearls to their Mom’s funeral.

Vicki Vaughn Nugent and Donna Vaughn Childre



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(C) Copyright 2012-2019 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced to original location if known for credit reference.



LIFE’S STRAND OF PEARLS is an interesting blog post seeing life through a simple strand of lustrous pearls. I first posted this as one of my initial blog messages but have reached in the vault of over a thousand posts. It is still a favorite and I hope you will feel the symbolism. Please join me and share the blog with others. #blog #amwriting #lifelesson #pearls



Once in a while I will reach into my vault of my blog posts and pull out one of my favs. This one has a sentimental pull since I love pearls. Recently, several events have tried to deny me my pearl but I keep hanging in there with the belief, Life is a strand of pearls and some of the ones to be added to my strand are struggling to mature to the maximum beauty. I should be patient as we have no control on the timing. Good things come to those who wait. Here is the post I love and I hope it has meaning for you too. This was prior to me moving the blog to WordPress and we are still building our audience. 

TODAY THE WORDS are LIFE’S STRAND OF PEARLS.  In anticipation of reaching an important goal for the blog of 150,000 page views, I went back to my log of posts and found this one. I thought we might enjoy some pearly whites this morning.

For most of you who know me, you already know how I love pearls. I have worn pearls and they have always given me such a warm feeling when I have them on. I will notice in photos of anyone that has a pearl necklace, earrings or brooch (for any youngsters that is a pin). What I would like to share is the thought behind pearls. A dear friend of mine has told me many times, “there’s your pearl” when something good happened. He would also say when he was giving me great advice, “here is a little pearl”. One day, when I was about to put one of my strands, I took a long look at it, realizing the importance of message it was portraying.
Let me share this with you. Pearls are grown in a hard shell (and really few of us look at an oyster shell as pretty like we look at other shells). It may take up to 20 or more years to bring a pearl to full size so a lot of time goes into the process. Pearls in their natural state aren’t the finished pearl we see in the strands as they are polished and by this process, it brings out their true luster. If you take the time and look closely, pearls are still unique and usually no two are exactly the same. As beautiful as pearls are, they can be beautiful with others or beautiful on their own. Pearls are usually a gift given by someone who loves them dearly.
Now for the deeper thought……have you thought about the clasp? As beautiful as the strand of pearls are, without the clasp to hold it all together, the pearls would fall to the ground It is the most important part of the necklace and here is how I see pearls. Pearls are our different stages of our life. When we are young, we are the pearls being nurtured in our shell surrounded by a hard protective cover (our parents). After a while, we are plucked into our adult lives. We can be successful on our own or part of a collection (company). We have strength and luster; but are fragile if not connected by a strong clasp (God). We can add other pearls (spouses, children, friends, and grandchildren) to our strand and people like to enjoy our pearls. God will hold our lives together and the clasp needs to be checked to make sure it closed securely (our faith). Next time you see a strand of pearls, take a deep look at it. God gives us the freedom to build a beautiful strand of pearls of life with all of its beauty and luster but He wants us to keep our pearls safe, protected and loved.
Blogger’s note: I had a thought this morning to add to this post. As times have changed and styles too, not as many people wear pearls. I wondered that even though change is sometimes good, have we taken a route of easy to acquire beads and metals as well as fast food, and disposable clothes (wear a few times and they become worn). My question is have we thrown away our quality of life with those clothes or when we carelessly throw the jewelry into a casual place that can be lost. Maybe we need to return to the days of pearls and vintage clothes that last forever, treasuring each inheritance instead of wanting the instant gratification of I want it now and I don’t care if it lasts. Just thinking out loud.


Matthew 13:45 – Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls

(c) copyright 2012-2019 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material including photos is sourced to the original location, if known, for credit reference.

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