A Second Chance

“Easter is very important to me, it’s a second chance.” ~ Reba McEntyre

easter eggs

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Published in: on March 31, 2013 at 3:25 pm  Comments (38)  
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An Easter Prelude Recipe

pretty plate squircle I

(Photo credit: urbanmkr)

I am making this as a prelude to Easter dinner tomorrow. It is delicious and easy peasy which are two of my criteria for a recipe. The others of course are that a recipe have five ingredients and only three steps. While this has a few more than five ingredients, it makes up for it by being simple to put together.

This is another “Debbie” recipe—my fine gourmet friend who is the inspiration for a lot of my cooking ventures. She encourages me by telling me that “even Dave (her husband) can do it”, although if you remember from an earlier post, Dave, it turns out, is a great cook in his own right.

Hot Crab Spread

1 – 8 oz. package of cream cheese at room temperature

1 – 7 oz. can of crabmeat

2 tbsp. of chopped green onions

½ tsp. of jarred minced garlic

1 tbsp. milk

Dash of pepper (I love recipes that call for a dash—brings out my creativity)

1 tbsp. lemon juice

1/3 cup of slivered almonds

Combine all ingredients except for almonds. Mix well! Garnish with almonds.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Serve with crackers.

Kudos to my friend Nancy for making hot cross buns from scratch yesterday—they were delicious and provided just the right note for Good Friday.

Next week: a recipe from my sister Peggy for a great pork chop dinner.

Bliss: Easy Recipes that taste good–what tried and true recipe do you keep returning to that never disappoints?

Published in: on March 30, 2013 at 1:12 pm  Comments (33)  
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Melancholy Bliss?

English: Easter holidays in the Bulgarian Orth...

Candles on Good Friday, at the Church of St. Cyril and Methodius (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Good Friday brings with it sombre introspection. For some of us, it is a sad day. In an effort to not eradicate this solemn day, but to lift it out of its melancholy grasp, I give you this quote by someone wise, but Unknown:

Easter is not a time for groping through dusty, musty tomes or tombs to disprove spontaneous generation or even to prove life eternal.  It is a day to fan the ashes of dead hope, a day to banish doubts and seek the slopes where the sun is rising, to revel in the faith which transports us out of ourselves and the dead past into the vast and inviting unknown.”  ~ Author unknown, as quoted in the Lewiston Tribune.

Have you ever noticed just how wise Unknown is? I think I will claim that moniker as my nom de plume.

Bliss is finding something that lifts us out of the melancholy, while at the same time giving Good Friday its due. What do you think?

Published in: on March 29, 2013 at 12:45 pm  Comments (43)  
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This made me smile, hope it does you too –

Live & Learn

Michael Bublé and 15-year old Sam.  Sam sings a few bars.  Bublé’s reaction?  Sam’s facial expressions? Priceless.


And if you haven’t had enough of Bublé (one of Burnaby, B.C. Canada’s favorite sons) and “Feeling Good”, here’s the full version…

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Published in: on March 29, 2013 at 3:19 am  Comments (14)  

You’ve Got A Friend in Me

Friends

Friends (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A few thoughts on friendship:

“Each friend represents a world in us, a world not possibly born until they arrive.”  ~ Anais Nin

I am grateful to my friends for so many things, and without them my world would be one-dimensional.

I would never name all my friends for fear that I would leave someone important out—but you know who you are if you are reading this. And if you are not a friend yet, my heart is open. It is open because the friends that I have opened it.

I echo the sentiments of Cicero when he wrote:

“How can life be worth living, if devoid

Of the calm trust reposed by friend in friend?

What sweeter joy than in the kindred soul,

Where converse differs not from self-communion?”

Or more simply in the words of a Hallmark card:

“You paint my life brighter

And make my life lighter.”

I am inspired today by the book “Friendfluence” by Carlin Flora. The subtitle of her book is “The Surprising Ways Friends Make Us Who We Are”. I have just started reading her book and pulled the quotes in this post from it, but I am interested see what conclusions she comes to. I know that my friends have influenced me in what I read, how I write,  and what recipes I try. I have friends who encourage me to exercise, friends I laugh with, and friends who most importantly are there when I need them.

I sometime wonder how I have deserved such friends—I am humbled by their friendship and eternally grateful.

I used to think I could stand alone and face things by myself. I cannot—I need my posse of friends to keep me from falling off a path that is at times rocky. They smooth the way.

Today, my bliss is in the celebration of my friends. Could you survive without yours?

Published in: on March 28, 2013 at 10:28 am  Comments (29)  
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Equality ~ It Just Makes Sense

red

The symbol stands for the support of equality ~ Lynnette Conroy from Rant, Rave, Write. She wrote a post about this — most worthy of reading.

In Support of Marriage Equality for Same-Sex Couples

Le Clown did too.Marriage Equality

Published in: on March 27, 2013 at 2:52 pm  Comments (14)  
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You Are My Bliss

Pretty Flowers

(Photo credit: Joe Shlabotnik)

Yesterday, I wrote about trying to remain positive in the face of things I had no control over. The responses I got were absolutely phenomenal. If you are feeling a bit disheartened—go read the comments from my post yesterday. With few exceptions they are positive and life-affirming and show what a wonderful community we have here in blog world (and beyond).

Here is just one~

photosfromtheloonybin said: We all have up days and down days, but you know me well enough by now to know that I believe in being as positive as possible because life is just too damn short!! Here’s a quote that I found tonight that I think you might enjoy:

“Optimism is the most important human trait, because it allows us to evolve our ideas, to improve our situation, and to hope for a better tomorrow.” ~ Seth Godin

Cindy is the voice behind photosfromtheloonybin, and is wise beyond her years. Yes, Cindy I do enjoy the quote—it takes optimism to a higher level, one that I think cannot almost not be countered.

You are all my Bliss – thank you.

Published in: on March 27, 2013 at 2:02 pm  Comments (21)  
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A New Approach – Or Crazy Is As Crazy Does

The sceptical look

The sceptical look (Photo credit: Bjørn Giesenbauer)

I am going to try something different today. I am going to put Ms. Sceptical on a shelf and do something I am not sure has merit, but I am not sure doesn’t.

There are those of you who are much more enlightened than I; your philosophy has a depth I perhaps cannot begin to understand, and you know that your ego is really a bit of a jerk so you have parted ways with it, if not literally at least figuratively. {Ego does not have to be a bad thing per se, if it is a healthy sense of self-esteem, but so many times it crosses into its inflated guise, where we teeter on the border of superiority. But that is a subject for another day}—back to~

What is the different thing I am going to try today? I am going to take my own advice (which sounds much easier than it is). My husband and I are awaiting some news right new that will determine what path we take next. And once again, yesterday, the decision was put off. It is not something that is within our control—it seems to have a life of its own—and anyone who has ever been mired in a lawsuit knows exactly what I mean.

In an effort to fend off the reaction I know my husband is going to have (if things do not go our way—and with the judicial system you just never know), I tried to explain to him that sometimes the messages we send out, come back in the manner in which we sent them. In other words, if we are negative, we get negative back. He was not in the mood for this (he is generally quite open minded, but right now is too stressed to take on any new practices). So I have decided to do what I asked him to do: give up on what I cannot change, accept it, and move on. But move on with a difference.

The difference will be that I am going to try to send out that which I want to receive. All those crazy people who believe we should send positive messages to the universe may not be all that crazy. I do not believe that this will magically change my life (but if it does, so much the better) but what could be the harm? Always thinking the worst, so far, has not been much help. There are people who say that we are self-delusional if we think these methods work, that we are putting our eggs in the wrong basket, and not accepting things as they really are; or we are setting ourselves up for an even bigger fall.

But, I say to these people, what have I got to lose?

crocus

(Photo credit: polkadotsoph)

I am reading “You Can Create an Exceptional Life” by Louise Hay (a champion of the positive if ever there was one) and Cheryl Richardson. Throughout the book they have provided numerous affirmations: things we should say to ourselves that many of us don’t, but the one I like the best and intend on repeating with some regularity is this:

“All is well. Everything is working out for my highest good. Out of this situation only good things will come.” ~ Louise Hay

There are many many affirmations throughout the book—some of them I find a little too—I don’t know, what it the word?—bizarre for my world, but many, if adopted, could do no harm. I will not be putting a mirror up in every room in my house soon (as Louise suggests) and tell myself that I am beautiful, but I will be trying to practice positivity on a more regular basis.

As you can imagine, there is not just one way to approach this—but the two I am going to work on are optimism and patience. Optimism defined in the book is “putting attention and energy toward solutions rather than focusing on problems.” Patience is “experiencing the journey fully and consciously rather than rushing to achieve a particular result.”

Perhaps with these two things in my arsenal, my journey to find bliss will be a little less rocky. What do you think?

This will renew your faith–a faith that lately has been rattled. Thank you for this Edward Hotspur 🙂

Edward Hotspur

If you’re at a party and you find a drunk woman passed out on your couch, here’s what you do:

Edward Hotspur

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Published in: on March 25, 2013 at 4:28 pm  Comments (48)  

Days Gone By

The first stanza of this poem from one of the Five Poets, Lenore Langs, is the perfect way to start off the week:

She Never Finished Anything

was distracted from her prayers

by the flash of a finch’s wing

decided to follow a regime

of monday cleaning tuesday laundry

but took her coffee

to the backyard for ten minutes

on the first monday

and stayed all morning

watching the light change

lilac Syringa vulgaris in bloom

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

on the leaves of the lilac.

Lunch at Saint James Cheese Company

(Photo credit: Brother O’Mara)

I love this poem for so many reasons. I remember that my mom had wash day on Monday, ironing day on Tuesday, and heavy duty cleaning day on Friday (she cleaned every day but especially on Friday); and Friday night was grocery night and on many a Saturday night we had sandwiches and potato chips and not a big meat and potato meal that we had every other day of the week. I loved the Saturday suppers — so relaxed and everyone would seem to be in a good mood. Mom would set out the cold cuts and lettuce and condiments and pickles and we would make our own sandwiches around the kitchen table. And if Mom had not baked we would have probably made a Saturday trip to town to the bake shop and feasted on jelly donuts for dessert. Heaven!

What are some of your heavenly blissful memories of days gone by?

Published in: on March 25, 2013 at 3:19 pm  Comments (42)  
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