Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Gone Fishin....

...well not really fishing!!!

But I am taking a short break from blogging. I've been working on some off-line projects over the weekend and making good progress. I've decided to focus on these for a while and not spend so much time online. I don't know about all of you but many a day, I end up spending 5-6...hours online and it goes by in a flash! A lot of time.

I also want to spend more time out of doors and since I don't have any of the new techno bells and whistles like Ipads, Blackberry etc, if I'm not at home, I'm not on the Internet either. LOL

I will be back at the beginning of August to announce the winners of the Happiness Is....contest so do stop by then to see if you've won a prize. I hope some of my earlier posts are inspiring and uplifting to you too!

Speaking of the Happiness Is.....contest, there's still a few more days to enter at:

Happiness Is....???

The entries so far have been so much fun to read but I hope there's more to come before the end of the month. Isn't it interesting the different ways that we sum up happiness?

Happy July. Enjoy those warm summer days.... and see you next month.

Many hugs, G :<)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Word of the Week: Perception


From a distance, a "time out" from our usual routine thoughts... what do we perceive?

"Perception appears to be automatic, but in fact it is a learned phenomenon. The world you live in including the experience of your body, is completely dictated by how you learned to perceive it. If you can change your perception, you  change the experience of your body and your world."

from the book: Ageless Body. Timeless Mind by Deepak Chopra

 What a hopeful and inspiring message this is.

This is a book I would highly recommend. Written several years ago (perhaps there is an updated edition?) the insights and wisdom of the author still rings true. I am just finishing this book; it was not a quick read. A wealth of information to digest and consider throughout.

Wishing you a wonderful week!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

An Inspiring Quote for the Day

I love this one. 

The quote itself and Thoreau's beautiful, poetic choice of words.

“If one advances confidently in the direction of one’s dreams, and endeavors to live the life which one has imagined, one will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”

Henry David Thoreau

Tuesday, July 12, 2011



My novel/journal notebook (1st in a series) and Seven Year Pen

Isn't it wonderful when a post or comment that you read at one of your favorite blogs (in this case it was actually one of my blogs!) ends up inspiring/motivating you to do something you've always wanted to do? This has happily happened for me recently.

I wrote a book review post over at My Real Life Reviews about the book: Writing Fiction for Dummies, a few weeks ago. In the post, I mentioned my long-time dream/wish/aspiration to write and COMPLETE a novel.

A couple of my blog friends made the suggestion via comments to check out Julia Cameron's books, which I did. I actually read several of her books including: The Right to Write (my favorite so far) after that. A writing suggestion that Julia Cameron made again and again, jumped out at me. It was, to have a "writing time" every day and complete 3 pages. More is fine, less is not. Since the novel I am working on is a journal of sorts, this seemed to be something in terms of a plan for me that could actually work.

Well it is working, beautifully! I have been working on my novel, in small 3-5 page sessions (writing not typing) every week day (slight modification but I usually end up writing more than 3 pages each day) for about a month now. I am LOVING it! Inspired but not overwhelmed and progressing slowly but surely towards finally achieving my goal to complete a novel. I have over 60 pages written already! A rough draft of course but the "bones" of the story will be there. The polishing to follow.

This approach probably wouldn't be workable for every kind of book  but it seems to be a perfect fit for me and my current book project. When I have written short stories in the past, I have enjoyed it. When I write articles and posts, poetry etc, I enjoy those too. But when it came to facing the daunting task of a complete novel, I was always overwhelmed and it was so easy to give up. Not this time.

Perhaps this suggestion will be something that might also work for you. I hope I've passed along some novel-writing inspiration, if that happens to be one of your long-sought after goals too!

PS: Some other recent posts....

 If you have been searching for a really good natural lipstick for a long time (as I have been) you won't want to miss my new review of Just Pure Mineral lipsticks over at my review blog.

I've also been out and about taking photos of some of the gorgeous flowers now in full bloom in our area. With all the rain we've had recently, Mother Nature is once again looking so fine!

To celebrate some of that (fragrant) beauty, I wrote this Tau-Ku poem about the scent of the unmistakeable honeysuckle: Sweet Honeysuckle: A Tau-Ku Poem

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Word of the Week: Laughter!


How's this for a reading group? LOL!!!

Can we ever have enough laughter in our lives? Probably not.

Laughter not only makes us happy and makes us smile, it is also very good for us, health wise.

Many years ago when I was recovering from "burn-out syndrome/ chronic fatigue" caused by too much worry, work, stress...that eventually added up and robbed me of my good health for almost 2 years, I read many stories about the healing powers of laughter.

I spent a lot of time on the sofa during that time of recovery. I wasn't able to do much as my nervous system was virtually in tatters. Resting and re-thinking how I had been living to have ended up so weak and so ill. I tried to read mainly inspiring and healing stories/ books about real people who had been through illnesses caused by stress who had recovered and lived to tell the tale.

The story of Norman Cousins and his remarkable recovery from a life-threatening tissue disease described in his book: Anatomy of An Illness is a story that has always stayed with me. Cousins and his doctors believed that recovery was due in large part to daily doses of lots of laughs, watching Marx Brother's movies where as drugs and other treatments had had little or no effect for weeks. Cousins had actually been getting worse as time had been going by in the hospital, until he added the funny movies to his daily routine.  If you've never read his story, it is definitely worth the time.

I also recently found this interesting site that lists many of the health benefits of laughter.

When I'm having a bad, sad or mad day... a good laugh (or even better, lots of them) can go a long way towards turning things around and helping me to relax and reassess things.

 I love watching funny movies like: Take the Money and Run with Woody Allen and Back to School with Rodney Dangerfield, two of my all-time favorite, classic LOL movies.

If you have a funny movie, book, video etc...to share, please do.

Here's to a week filled with lots of laughter.

It truly is the best medicine, for so many reasons! 


PS: I was fortunate to photograph a PERFECT pink rose recently. I wrote a haiku poem to go with it. You can see the post at: Haiku Reflections: A Perfect Pink Rose. I never tire of roses!

This adorable (and definitely not Mr. Cheddar approved) photo courtesy of Flickr

Thursday, July 7, 2011

More Wisdom from the Birds


As I've said here before I think we can learn a lot from birds. Chinese proverbs too.

Isn't this chickadee a little cutie?     

Original photo courtesy of: Flickr


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

My Real Life Reviews: Turtle Island Tofurky Jurky Snack review

My Poetic Path: July Park Pics!

Veggies, Yarns & Tails: In a Jam, About Jam!!!!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

The "Happiness is...." Contest!

For the month of July that is the question to answer, here at: Take A Happy Break!

In a comment for this post, complete this sentence:

Happiness is....

As it says in the song...happiness IS different things to different people.

I thought it would be fun to host a summer contest and ask that simple question.

If you had to sum up your definition of happiness in one sentence, what would it be?

                        A few minor details....              :<)    
* Contest will close July 31st.

* One entry per person.
* Winners of the prizes will be posted here at Happy Break, the first week in August.
* Each entry will be given a number and prize winners will be chosen by a random number system.

* Open to all readers, wherever you live!

* Prizes must be claimed by August 15th so stop by in early August to see if you are one of the winners!

* I'll be notifying the winners and getting contact information for mailing out prizes in early August.
* Any unclaimed prizes by August 15th will then be given to the next random number generated.


I think it's going to be a lot of fun to read what your various definitions of "happiness" are.

Please spread the word on your blogs, to friends etc...and take the contest button/post link  if you'd like to add it to your own blog! The more, the merrier! Thank you.

Speaking of prizes. I decided to have a number of smaller ones so that more readers could potentially win. I LOVE freebies, love prizes and I am so happy to be able to host this contest and offer the following prizes to you:

Drumroll please....and in no particular order:

The Happiness Is ....Contest Prizes!


1 pair: Arabian Nights earrings from Catgirl Creations


1 pair: Revelstoke earrings from Catgirl Creations


1 pair: Apple Green earrings from Stacy Garrett Jewelry



3 prizes of: Signed copies of my cookbook: Not Just for Vegetarians


Set of 4 beautiful notecards designed by Teri Casper at: Teri's Painted Daisies


Set of 3 novelty cards from Seltzer Designs


Origami notepaper, design set.


Gourmet cat sampler (supplied by Mr. Cheddar!)
**Please mention if you have a cat when you leave a comment.
**Dog lovers: I did ask about a dog prize but well....oh Ched!!!




Good Luck!!!!

PS: My apologies for less than the best photos for these. We haven't had much sunshine/natural light  to work with for weeks, here in BC; so I had to resort to flash pics. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

A Canadian Treasure to Share on Canada Day

There aren't too many songs that bring tears to my eyes every time I hear them but I'm sharing one here today that always does. And in a good way! 

For me, Gordon Lightfoot is one of the real treasures of Canada. This song came to mind when I was deciding what to write about for Canada Day.

His beautiful tribute to the building of the national railroad in Canada: Canadian Railroad Trilogy is a song that never gets stale. Lyrics that always touch my heart.

This video is from a concert in 1972. And check out those groovy threads!!! The "experts" said this song would never fly when it was released, much too long for radio air-time, at over 6 minutes. How wrong they were.

I've seen Gordon Lightfoot perform several times over the years. Including at his beloved Massey Hall in Toronto, his "home base" since the beginning of his career. He is a songwriter in a class of his own. And a survivor too, still performing after all these years and still with a loyal fan base.

Our family has had ties to the national railroads for many, many years. You can read more about that here including a rather romantic poem too!

Happy Canada Day wherever you may be!

Flag photo courtesy of Flickr
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