Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Beautiful Quote to Contemplate

" For one human being to love another, that is the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but a preparation."

Rainer Maria Rilke


What came to mind when I read this wonderful truly IS the answer. 

So simple and yet, so profound.

Much like the beauty and perfection of a single red rose.

Photo courtesy of: Flickr

Monday, June 27, 2011

Chive Talkin....


Do you ever get a silly and not quite original version  of a song, playing in your head?

Looking at this photo I took recently made me start humming the 70's  tune Jive Talkin' by the Bee Gees, except my version was: "Chive Talkin...'  !!!

Speaking of chives, don't you just love them?

Not only do they add such wonderful flavour to many recipes, they are so pretty in the garden when they first appear as flowers.

And best of all, they make an appearance every year. I'm a big perennial fan!


 Here's a recipe from my cookbook that you might enjoy. A gorgeous, vibrant green dressing. Wonderful to make when garden parsley and chives are plentiful. Great for summer salads and dipping too!

Green Goddess Dressing

1 C. fresh parsley
1-2 T. chopped fresh chives (to taste)
1 T. each, dehydrated chopped onion and garlic (adds an intense flavour)
1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 C. light mayonnaise
3 T. fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp. sea salt

Chop parsley, chives, dried onion and garlic in a food processor. Add remaining ingredients and process just until smooth. Chill at least 1 hour to thoroughly blend flavours. Yields: 1 cup.

After you are done in the kitchen, you might want to get on your boogie shoes and go... chive talkin.....LOL  :<)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Word of the Week: Key

Throw Away the Key
Release the burdens, bearing down.
Throw away the heavy, tarnished key.
Breathe in fresh clean, life-restoring air.
Expand and color, long lost dreams.
Forgotten, fallen and frayed.
Left for dead, in disrepair.
Often it takes a lifetime.
To see a wrong made right.
But the light will prevail.
It is there, always.
The Truth and Beauty.
That spurs our good works on.
Even in times of total and utter despair.
Savor the scents of early spring.
Revel in the shimmering Van Gogh skies.
While buds slowly appear.
Reminding and restoring us.
Harbingers to sunlight and hope unfurling.
Throw away the key.
Cast off the dark days.
The murky mire cast by evil ways.
The gift of Joy.
Finally restored and rightfully ours.
The sunlit path awaits.
A journey beckons, without end.
GHH/ 2009

We all need to find the courage to "turn the key" and let the fresh air and thoughts in at times.
Here's to a week filled with new discoveries, opportunities and finding the "perfect" inspiration.

Photo courtesy of Flickr
Link to original poetry post with reader's comments.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Sunshine on a Rainy Day Haiku



Seeing yellow flowers on a rainy day always makes me smile!
I wish you a wonderful weekend, no matter what the weather may bring! :<)
PS: Some recent posts at my other blogs, you might also enjoy:

Veggies, Yarns & Tails: A Mr. Cheddar Approved Joke

My Real Life Reviews: Catelli Smart Pasta review

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Loving Ourselves, Just the Way We Are

This  post: My Coming of Age  was one that I wrote some time ago, over at my cooking and craft blog: Veggies, Yarns & Tails.

I was thinking about this subject again recently and thought it would be worthwhile sharing this as a "happy topic" here at Take A Happy Break.

To feel truly and completely comfortable about ourselves, just the way we are. To not dwell on the "imperfections" physical and otherwise.

 It had been a topic/post that I had thought about writing about for a long time before I actually did. And this photo I also considered sharing for a long time too, before actually posting this.

You'll understand why when you read the original post.

Nothing really earth-shattering,  but for me it truly was a liberating moment/accomplishment. And a post that happily "rang true" for a lot of my readers at the time.

What has been your "coming of age" moment?

Here's to loving ourselves every day and just the way we are!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Fulllll of Fashion, the Remake!

This is so cute! Get ready for a big LOL : Huggies commercial redo

The original on TV and this home video redo both make me laugh myself silly! :<)

More On the Power of Symbols in Our Lives

This previous post: Finding Your Own Personal Power Symbol continues to be a popular post here at Happy Break. Hundreds of readers from all over the world have already stopped in to read this one. Obviously, a subject that a lot of people are interested in.  It has motivated me to look into this topic a bit more.

Heart: My Own Personal Favorite Power Symbol

I recently finished reading the book: Feng Shui Home by Hale, Martin and De Winter. Feng Shui is another topic I've recently become interested in (fascinated really). There is quite a few references to symbolism in this book and I thought you might enjoy reading about just a few that piqued my interest.

  • Water: The element/symbol of love and the emotions. Fluid and changeable, water is also very powerful. In time, it will carve it's way through the hardest of rock. It is also cleansing and soothing.

  • Sun. The symbol of creative energy. Without the sun, there would be no life. The sun provides structure and a rhythm to our lives. It governs the seasons, the days. A powerful, positive symbol.

  • Earth. The element of all physical and material things. A symbol that is grounding and nurturing. Growth, stability and standing firm.

  • Green. Color symbolic of heart, emotions, love, nature and growth. Also money and prosperity (no wonder it's my favorite LOL)

  • Violet. Color symbolic of the higher dimension. Wisdom, inspiration, spirituality. Transitions.

This book also discusses the value of having altars/shrines around our homes, to celebrate and focus on various events, hopes, dreams in our lives. Incorporating many symbolic colors and materials depending on a particular theme of the altar.

 For example: An Altar for Positive Outcomes may include: Orange candles for strength and power. Turquoise as a symbol of protection and success. Herbs and spices: bergamot and cinnamon to attract success and prosperity. A place to focus on the desires of your heart. Dwelling on empowerment and being centered on success and achievement.

I would like to pursue this idea of setting up a number of small altars with different themes, after we get moved. I think having symbols to focus on and taking the time to mediate on particular wishes and goals in a special place, is a very good suggestion.

Do you have any special places to meditate and to showcase symbols in your home/life? 

Heart photo courtesy of Flickr.

Happy Summer Solstice!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Word of the Week: Relax...

....and REALLY take the time to smell and savor the flowers!


I have a bad habit of multi-tasking even when I should be relaxing and taking a break.

 Can you relate?

I'm going to make a real effort this week to focus on doing better when it comes to taking a "time out" and truly relaxing mind, body and soul. Instead of having a million "to do" thoughts floating through my mind when I'm trying to take a breath or mediation break. Reading a book and at the same time, writing out yet another list for the week etc, etc...

Here's to enjoying all the beauty and magnificence of June's flowers.

 And taking the time to really R-E-L-A-X!

Happy Father's Day to all the Dads!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Peanut Butter: Your Heart Can Love it Too!

I've always been a peanut butter fan. I love it, especially the natural kind that contains only peanuts. I feel sorry for children who can't eat this wonderful spread, due to allergies etc. It was a staple when I was a kid. Not the case anymore it seems. 

But for those of us without allergy concerns, peanut butter (in moderation, it's always about moderation isn't it?) can apparently be good for us (and not just delish) for heart health and many other benefits. I've been reading more and more articles about peanut butter lately. This one was excellent. In addition to the nutritional information that is included about peanut butter, it also has a recipe for a toasted monkey sandwich (meat-free I assure you!!!)  and also how to make a bird feeder using peanut butter.

 Aren't these yummy looking? Yummy to eat too.

Here's the recipe for the cookies shown above.  I've made these many times: Old-Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies. Remember those, the ones with the crisscross fork marks on top. My mom made these too. Bliss after school with an ice-cold glass of Mmoooo.... heh, that's what we called milk. Didn't everyone? LOL

Do you enjoy peanut butter? Any PB recipes that you particularly like? If you have a link to a good one, do share. :<)

Now I'm off to make a piece of toast with a generous swipe of peanut butter! Yummm...


PS: Some recent posts at my other blogs you might also enjoy:

My Poetic Path: Haiku Reflections: Delicate Beauty

My Real Life Reviews: More Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things book review

Veggies, Yarns & Tails: It's All About Salads

Have a wonderful weekend! :<)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

For Days When You Wish There Really Was a "Chill Pill"

We all have our bad days, sad days, mad days..... the ones we would like to forget forever and leave behind.

Looking back on my own truly difficult,overwhelming days (and there's been quite a few) I realise now that I usually could have made things a bit (sometimes much) easier on myself at the time IF I had stepped back and tried to put some coping strategies into practise at the time.

Recently, I found this excellent post over at the Positivity Blog with some workable suggestions for chilling out and taking a "step back"  on those bad days.

I think I'll keep this information handy when another bad day arrives. And they will, whether we like to think about them or not. Perhaps a little pre-planning is the way to go. I know I'm trying harder these days to "deal with it and move on" and to really put things into perspective and not dwell on what I can't change at any given time and do what I can to make things better, when I can.

What coping strategies do you find helpful on difficult days?

When it's time to "chill out"  it can be difficult but it's so important not to let the stress of any situation impact our health if at all possible.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Enjoy ALL Kinds of Weather. A Rainy Day Haiku too!



It's been raining here in Interior BC,  a very LOT!  Much more than the usual for June.

As I'm such a rain-lover, that's just fine with me. But the complaining starts almost immediately. I hear it everywhere: "where is the sun"  "I'm sick of all this rain" "I hate the rain" "Rain, rain go away" "why does it have to rain" goes on and on.

I love the rain but I also love the sun too. And the changing seasons. The snow, the fog, a wicked good storm now and then. Thunder booming. I kind of like it all!

We can't do anything about the weather so we may as well enjoy what we can about it.

It's a big part of every single day, isn't it?

And what an added "bonus". When we can enjoy the beauty of nature, in all it's verdant glory, thanks in large part to the rain. I'd say:

Rain can be a very good thing. :<)

Monday, June 13, 2011

A Telemarketing Tale and Honoring Our Veterans

Sometimes, it IS worthwhile, listening for a minute or two when a telemarketer calls.

That happened to me this past week. I was busy on the computer typing away, when the phone rang. Rather than letting it click over to our answering machine, I decided to pick up. A young man on the other end of the line proceeded to tell me about the Memory Project an initiative to preserve the history of our veterans for school children across Canada. Apparently, this is something that is being dropped as regular curriculum in many of our provinces.

This nationwide bilingual project will create a record of Canada’s participation in the Second World War as seen through the eyes of thousands of veterans. The Memory Project will provide every living Second World War veteran with the opportunity to share their memories through oral interviews and digitized artifacts and memorabilia. These stories and artifacts will be available on this site for teachers, students and the general public.

I was so happy to hear about this initiative. How does the saying go... "if we ignore our history, we are destined to re-live it" .

I don't think we can ever do enough for the veterans of all the wars. And yet these are the people who are often forgotten or not recognized for their sacrifices and contributions after they return from their military duties. It is gratifying to know that there are still individuals and  organizations working to change that before it's too late. Not only are veterans going out to visit school children as part of this program, there is also an interactive online option where veterans can tell their stories from home and in turn they will be shared via the Internet.

So, not only did I learn about this wonderful program that touched on a subject that I hold near and dear to my heart.It also proved that sometimes, telemarketers can be worth listening to! :<) 

I guess we can learn from the most unexpected sources at times.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Word of the Week: Contemplate



Taking the time to contemplate. Look before you leap. Haste makes waste... 

When you are an impulsive person like I am, contemplation doesn't always come easy!  
I like the second definition below. To meditate on or ponder.

Contemplation can take many forms.

 It's all good. And so worth the time too.

Do you find it easy to contemplate life's big decisions before you make them?



1. To look at attentively and thoughtfully.

2. To consider carefully and at length; meditate on or ponder: contemplated the problem from all sides; contemplated the mystery of God.

3. To have in mind as an intention or possibility: contemplate marriage; forced by the accident to contemplate retirement.
To ponder; meditate.
Definition source: The Free Dictionary


PS: And some recent posts at my other blogs you might also enjoy:

My Poetic Path: Washed By The Rain...

Veggies, Yarns & Tails: A Very Cool Rainy Day Craft Project

My Real Life Reviews: Ryza Rice Beverage

Friday, June 10, 2011

What Do Cats REALLY dream about?


How's this for a Sleeping Beauty?

No matter how many cat beds I've bought over the years, they always prefer a box and old blankie it seems.

Ched and I wish you a wonderful weekend!

Well I know he would, if he wasn't sleeping right now LOL

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

A Happiness Reading List

Speaking of  favorite summer book choices in this post last week...and please DO add your own personal favs to the list as a comment there, if you have any more "summer reads" to share. I'm a fast reader and go through a pile of  books very quickly! LOL  I also recently found this fairly extensive "happiness" reading list over at the Happiness Project hosted by Gretchen Rubin. I haven't had a chance to check out any of the books so far but some of them do look interesting. I hope you do too!

I also plan to review: The Happiness Project book by Gretchen Rubin, over at my review blog: My Real Life Reviews, in the near future. I just finished reading it.

When we fill our minds with happy thoughts, images and words we are happier. It may seem simple but it works! The opposite effect (negative thoughts, images...) also appears to be true.

I'll pick happiness and good thoughts any day!

Happy Happiness Reading  :<)
And some new posts at my other blogs you might also enjoy:

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

A Favorite Summer Haiku


This is one of my favorite summer photos and haiku poems.

May all your summer wishes come true.

PS: Copper penny optional! :<)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Word of the Week: Endure


There are days when all we can do is, to endure.

Hold on, hold fast.

Wait out the storm.

The sun will shine again.

Things will get better.

Enduring the hardships and set-backs in life.

Restored and perhaps realigned, stronger and wiser.

There IS a silver lining to be found, in every cloud.


Also submitted for the OSI prompt: Endure.

Thanks for the inspiration Teri!

Friday, June 3, 2011

(Almost) Summer Time and the Reading is Easy....

I don't think there is anything more relaxing than enjoying a good "summer read" outside on a warm, sunny day. If at all possible, while lying on a sandy, beautiful beach.

 I love reading, all year long and all types of books. But there is something special, even nostalgic about summer stories and books. Sometimes conjuring up personal happy summer- time memories too.

The following two books are my all time favorite "summer books". I hope you enjoy these reviews. And DO share your own favorite summer book(s) too!  I'd love to add some new favorites to my summer reading list. I've got a pile of books on the go most of time but I'm always happy to be steered to another good read.

And right now, summer reading is on my mind!


Beachcombing at Miramar by Richard Bode

I bought this book several years ago and after reading it once, proceeded to immediately buy numerous copies to give away as gifts. I was that impressed.

One close friend carried this book around in her purse for weeks. When she needed a ’stress break’ she would pull it out to enjoy a peaceful page or two. Another friend stayed up all night, not able to put the book down until the last page was enjoyed. I can relate, it really is that good.

For me, this was a life-changing book and one that touched me deeply. The story of Richard Bode’s journey from the rat race to a peaceful and contemplative life on a California beach at Miramar. A dream that for most people remains just that. Bode went for it. Gave up his high-paying, high-pressure job and left behind the life he had always known (including a marriage that wasn’t working any more) to find himself. To live out his dream of a life filled with meaningful and one- of- a -kind “memory” days.

Beautifully written, this is a book you will never forget. A rare glimpse and chance to share an extraordinary life transition along with the author. I highly recommend this book to add to your summer reading list. In case you haven’t read it already.

Summer's Lease by John Mortimer 

If lighter reading with plenty of laughs is what you are looking for; perhaps this next one will be more your cup of (iced) tea…
 John Mortimer’s: Summer’s Lease. I’ve read this book at least 5 times, yes it's that good!

This is the travel journal of an English family. Mother Molly: plump, disillusioned with her marriage and the demands of motherhood; decides to respond to a rather cryptic newspaper ad for a Italian vacation rental. She takes a rather bold step (for her) and rents a “villa” in Tuscany for the summer and so begins the tale…
As one reviewer on Amazon so aptly put it: ” A delicious Italian dish; sun-drenched and garlic-scented novel” .

I won’t spoil the story. If you are looking for a fun, entertaining and well-written summer novel with a touch of suspense, romance regained and even strange water-shortages abounding….. you may want to give this one a try.

Have a wonderful weekend and happy reading!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Welcoming June's Arrival with Lilacs and Sweet Memories


Lilacs are one of my all-time favorite flowers.

 I love everything about them. The beautiful pastel shades of mauve,creamy white,pink.. The  tiny, perfectly shaped petals, the unforgettable and unmistakable, glorious fragrance.

And best of all for me, the sweet memories they bring to mind of being a little girl and enjoying the lilacs coming into bloom, in early summer.

We had two lovely lilac trees in our yard, that burst into soft mauve blooms about this time each year. Then my mom filling the house with vases of these beauties.  I remember it like it was yesterday.
And speaking of yesterday, I was given a bouquet of mauve lilacs to enjoy and I am savoring their fragrance as it wafts through our home. They can't bottle this kind of scent perfection!

What is your favorite flower that brings good memories to mind? Do share!

PS: Here are some new posts at my other blogs that you might also enjoy:

At: My Real Life Reviews: Burt's Bees Shea Butter Hand Repair Cream 

At: My Poetic Path: A Tanka Moment, Summer Wishes and Winter Dreams

At: Veggies, Yarns & Tails: A Favorite Summertime Pasta Recipe
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...