Friday, January 31, 2014


Thank Goodness It's Friday
It's the end of the work week
And I'm ever so glad
Don't get me wrong, my week wasn't bad

But there's something nice about Fridays
When it's more acceptable to be a bit distracted
When people go out to eat drink and be merry
I'm glad every week has a day like that

To me there's nothing like a Friday to pick me up
Even if I've had a bad week Fridays suggest
That a better week might be coming next.
Yet another reason why I like Friday the best!

So I hope everyone has a lovely Friday
That you can put down your work for a bit
And get to live a little on this day
Because Fridays should always be just plain FUN!

Thursday, January 30, 2014


"I beg you take courage, the brave soul can mend even in disaster." -Catherine the Great

I like this quote because I really do believe everyone has a lot of courage inside them. I think that's what keeps people going. There's so many things that happen in a life and people face them and to me that really is the beauty of living. Sometimes when things were really bad and I thought I'd never get through it, somehow each day I felt a little stronger for getting through the day before. Maybe  on a basic level, that's all being brave really is, finding a way to keep hoping that tomorrow will be better and working to make it so. Dear reader, wherever you might be, I hope that each day brings you strength and hope and is happier than the day before.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Why glasses are glorious!

Why I love glasses!

I've been wearing glasses
Since I was an itty bitty four-year -old
Like a pirate I wanted to be, I had an eye patch on one eye
To make the other eye get going- Ay Ay matie!

The thing I like about glasses
Is they help make people stronger
More able to see the day
And celebrate it longer!

Glasses helped me in so many ways
Because of them I love reading and writing
And I couldn't have written this blog without them
In short, because of glasses I have much better days!

So even if people get teased for them
I think glasses really are the coolest thing around
Because I know without them
I'd always be falling down!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Why I love street performers

One of the things i like best about living in a large city is that I'm able to see quite a few street performers who bring even more music into my life.While i like being able to listen to a favorite playlist on my IPod I've grown to appreciate street musicians because they're live and they're fun to watch. They show me that music can be found in the unlikeliest of places. These musicians are a nice surprise that brightens my day. As long as there is music in my life I believe that everything will ultimately be ok. This is why I'm grateful for street performers and wish them the very best!

Monday, January 27, 2014

It's Mozart's birthday!

Fun fact, Mozart's full name is/was Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart and he was born today in 1756.   I'm  rather glad that people just ended up calling him Mozart as the rest of his name is a bit of a mouthful. Anyway, I do like his music. I think it's lovely that such beautiful things could come out of a little boy's head. One of my favorite pieces by him is called Ave Verum Corpus. It's actually a much older hymn that he set to music. I think it's beautiful and rather soothing. I also like another piece by him called Requiem Aeternam. I realize that's part of a funeral but I still find it motivating. There are parts that sound rather triumphant. Whenever I listen to it, it makes me think that there's always a chance for triumph even in difficult circumstances. So happy 258th Mozart!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

A poem for The Beatles!

Since the Beatles are getting a Lifetime Achievement Award it's got me thinking of their songs. In their honor I've composed a poem as a result. (Couldn't resist!) Congratulations to all of them!

Here's to The Beatles

I'm grateful to the Beatles for many things
Not just because I like the music but because of how it feels 
When things are blackest I can hear them encouraging me
With Here Comes the Sun and its theme that everything will come right again
And also for reminding me It's ok to think of Yesterday but hope tomorrow is a better day

I like the Beatles for their Imagination and for sparking mine
(When I was smaller I used to wish a Yellow Submarine was somewhere I could live.)
Still, whenever I hear Hey Jude I can't get it out of my head
Lucy and her Sky With Diamonds is of course just as fun (and addictive)
And I still want to walk down Penny Lane one day-just to say I did

 Thanks to the Beatles I know that when I've had a difficult week
 I can be  glad there aren't 8 Days (in) A Week!
And when I'm frustrated the Beatles remind me that I only need to shout Help!
After all, I can always  Get By With a Little Help From My Friends
Somehow I know We Can Work it Out whatever it is

Like the Beatles I still firmly believe that All You Need is Love
Because love is a gift From Me To You
And wherever you are I hope people always Want to Hold Your Hand
As for me, I have always known that
As long as love exists I Feel Fine!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Robert Burns on Opera

“Opera is where a guy gets stabbed in the back, and instead of dying, he sings.”-Robert Burns (poet)

Robert Burns was born today in 1759 making this day his 255th birthday. I guess the man didn't like opera much-although he is right in that people in operas never stop singing and it does take an awfully long time for people in operas to keel over. Although maybe there's something inspiring in that. It's as if to say, no matter what happens just keep singing. Anyway, getting back to Robert Burns, he wrote a lot of lovely poetry and my favorite poem by him is below. Not only is the poem sweet but it's also clear that Mr. Burns was a firm believer in creative spelling!

A Red, Red Rose

O my Luve's like a red, red rose
That's newly sprung in June;
O my Luve's like the melodie
That's sweetly play'd in tune.

As fair art thou, my bonnie lass,
So deep in luve am I:
And I will luve thee still, my dear,
Till a' the seas gang dry:

Till a' the seas gang dry, my dear,
And the rocks melt wi' the sun:
I will luve thee still, my dear,
While the sands o' life shall run.

And fare thee well, my only Luve
And fare thee well, a while!
And I will come again, my Luve,
Tho' it were ten thousand mile.

Friday, January 24, 2014

How Maggie learned to appreciate the beer can-no not by getting drunk, thank you very much

Someone (no, not me, although it is tempting) who likes declaring days holidays has decided that today is National Beer Can Appreciation Day. Although I don't like beer I have actually learned to appreciate the beer can, several beer cans in fact, in a rather roundabout way. In high school I was a girl scout and a group I was a part of decided that we wanted to go to Europe one summer. To do, so we raised the money ourselves. In addition to money from traditional things like bake/girl scout cookie sales and car washes, part of the funding for this trip actually came from beer/soda cans. In Michigan you get 10 cents for turning in beer cans at grocery stores so they can be recycled. (Before you people in other states decide to start collecting cans and rushing to Michigan supermarkets with them, apparently the cans have to be purchased in Michigan for you to get the 10 cents.)

Anyway, we all lived close by a university and their football team is popular and a lot of people like to hold parties and drink quite a bit in the parking lot outside the stadium. With so much alcohol/soda being drunk, we figured that a lot of cans were left on the ground for us to take. So one Saturday right before a big game all 10 of us went out to the stadium's parking lot and  we managed to collect about $1,000 worth of cans in about 4 hours which we split 10 ways. We did this for a couple of games and raised quite a bit of money. The trip itself was a lot of fun. We went for 2 weeks and we traveled to the UK,France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Lichtenstein. I love to travel and the cities we visited were really beautiful. Before going I didn't realize there were different girl scout centers all over Europe so it was fun to see that and learn about them as well. The trip is something I'm still really glad I did and I'm thankful in part to beer cans for helping us get there!


Thursday, January 23, 2014

My family's favorite jokes

I come from a family of pretty funny people who like to joke around so I thought I'd share some of the jokes we like best! (Well, we all thought they were funny even if they might be slightly on the bad side!)

Joke 1: 
TV Announcer:  Do you have anything you'd like to say to the audience tonight?
Miss America Pageant Contestant: Yes I do! I want everyone to know I want piece on earth!
TV Announcer: Ok well, which piece do you want that to be?

Joke 2:
Person 1: Are you all right?
Person 2: No....I'm half left!

Joke 3:
Two hunters are out in the woods when one of them collapses. He doesn't seem to be breathing and his eyes are glazed. The other guy whips out his phone and calls the emergency services. He gasps, "My friend is dead! What can I do?" The operator says "Calm down. I can help. First, let's make sure he's dead." There is a silence, then a gun shot is heard. Back on the phone, the guy says "OK, now what?"

Joke 4:
Q: When is a door not a door?
A: When it's a jar!

Joke 5: 
Mannequin 1: How come you get all the really fancy clothes?
Mannequin 2: What can I say? I'm not you're average dummy!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Happy Birthday to Lord Byron

"When we think we lead we are most led."- Lord Byron from his poem "The Two Foscari"

Lord George Byron a British poet was born today in 1788. I liked the quote above by him because it makes me think of how even when I think I'm teaching someone something or helping them, they're helping me and teaching me as well.I recently started tutoring a friend in English and while I'm there to help her, she  also shows me how she learns best so in many ways she's leading me as much as I'm working to help her. To me the quote above and the time I spend tutoring show me how as much as it's good to lead,  to me it's important to never stop wanting to learn. So I'm happy to lead and be led in the process. Happy 226th,  Byron!  You're looking good!

Painting source:
we think we lead, we are most led.
we think we lead, we are most led.
When we think we lead, we are most led.
When we think we lead, we are most led.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Happy National Granola Bar day!

I have to say that one of my favorite foods is granola bars! For those who don't know (and everyone should know in my humble opinion) a granola bar is a snack made with oats nuts and usually raisins and chocolate chips all stuck together in a wonderful easy to eat bar! I love them so I was delighted to find out that today is apparently National Granola Bar Day! I found out the guy who is credited with creating the first granola bar, Stanley Mason is also famous for creating disposable diapers, squeezable ketchup bottles and dental floss dispensers. I don't know how much I like the idea of granola bars being associated in any way with diapers but at least disposable diapers are useful and he did create the squeezable ketchup bottle which has saved me (and I suspect quite a few people) the trouble of shaking those damn glass ketchup bottles! I also found out that he went to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The fact that he went to MIT isn't surprising because anyone who can create granola bars not to mention disposable diapers and really useful ketchup bottles must be wicked smaht!

Picture from Wikipedia:

Monday, January 20, 2014

My favorite Dr. King quote

"I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear."-Martin Luther King Jr.

It's cool how people, especially Dr. King can have such a way with words. It's like they were born to be quotable and do great things. I like this quote because it symbolizes Dr. King's fight against hatred and segregation. He did so much and inspired so many people, I'm glad that there's a day dedicated to remembering him every year. I like the quote above in particular because being angry and hating the things people do only makes me feel tired. I once heard that the best way to honor people who have died is to go on living. So in keeping with my New Year's resolution I'm going to continue to love more because hating and being angry just isn't worth the effort.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

A Happy World

I haven't been able to get the song "Happy" by Pharrell Williams out of my head. That's not a bad thing as listening to it does make me smile and it makes the day seem brighter. I recently saw this music video with people dancing to that song all over the world. I couldn't stop smiling watching it. I hope people can keep dancing and feeling happy like that as much as possible because it's the nicest way to be!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Happy Birthday to A.A. Milne

“If there ever comes a day when we can't be together keep me in your heart, I'll stay there forever”-Winnie the Pooh (by A.A. Milne)

Today is A.A. Milne's birthday and were he alive today and still writing books of the wonderful bear Winnie the Pooh, he would be 131 years old. I always liked Winnie the Pooh because as a children's book character he was always very innocent and sweet and reading about him and/or seeing him in films always made me feel good inside. I have to admit I've always had a soft spot for Winnie the Pooh and his friend Piglet. There was never a dull moment with them and like Winnie the Pooh I believe that there's nothing like a nice cup of tea and honey to put my world right again!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Hooray for green space!

It's official, green space is good for you! A group of British scientists (who must be in very good moods since completing this study) have found that people who live near green spaces like parks or forests feel happier, less stressed, make better decisions and are generally happier. The scientists also studied a group of lottery winners who won £500,000 and while they were extremely happy, people who lived in/near greener areas were happier for longer periods of time. Now I just want to rush out and find a park to sit in! To spread the happiness below is a little green space for you! To read more about the study click here.)

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Every day begins with....

"Every day begins with an act of courage and hope: Getting out of bed!"-Mason Cooley

This is my official solute to everyone who got out of bed today! Congratulations! You've had one small victory today! If you didn't get out of bed today then I still salute you for reading this post because in reading it you may have thought about getting out of bed and as they say, it's the thought that counts!

EveEvery day begins with an act of courage and hope: getting out of bed.
Mason Cooley

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

E.T. makes we want to go hang gliding

I borrowed the movie E.T. the Extra Terrestrial from the public library today. I hadn't seen the movie since I was very young. My favorite part of the film is the flying when this alien helps a boy named Elliott fly while riding a bicycle. When I watch it it makes me think of hang gliding because it's probably the only way I'll get to do anything like the E.T./Elliot bicycle ride.

I've wanted to go hang gliding ever since my parents went hang gliding when they went to New Zealand on vacation as a belated wedding anniversary trip. My dad somehow convinced my mum to go hang gliding while they were there and although my mum was petrified at first, true to form she agreed to go.  I found out later that my  dad had a lot of fun and while my mum was afraid at first she began to enjoy it and became so inspired by the experience she started reciting poetry by Gerard Manley Hopkins while gliding. My mum does like poetry but I don't think I've heard of her randomly reciting it like that. One of the things I love about my parents in general is that they're adventurous, they speak their minds and they've always encouraged me and my brother and sister to follow that example. I'm grateful to them for that because they've always made me feel free to do things and have experiences and feel really happy. All this is why I, like E.T., really like phoning home!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Inner and Outer self through art

I recently took an art class which can best be described as "exploratory art" because while each session had a theme you could pretty much do what you wanted with it. I think the session I liked best was one where all participants were asked to create a mask of how we saw ourselves outwardly (or how we wanted others to perceive us) and then on the inside we were asked to decorate it how we saw ourselves on the inside. Below are pictures of what I created. The blue mask-how I'd like people to view me, while it might look a little like an extra sparkly Blue Man Group mask, I think blue is a color that's natural, which is what I like to be, and sparkles are fun and they can make people smile which are two things I like to do. On the inside it's green because I like being natural inside as well as out. I had stars in it because I feel like stars can give people light and perhaps hope when things are darkest. I do my best to put my heart into the things I do. All that in a nutshell is how I've grown to see myself.

I think it was interesting thing to think about how I see myself on the inside and how I'd like people to see me. It's something I hadn't really given much thought to before. It was fun and I think it gave me a greater sense of self which is something I hope everyone has the chance to examine about themselves. I've found that to love myself for who I am helped me to feel happier.

Monday, January 13, 2014

My favorite time of day

I've always been a morning person. It's very unusual for me to sleep later than 9 a.m. I like mornings because I always liked the idea that each day is new and a chance to start again regardless of what might have happened the day before. I think it's a wonderful gift to have that chance. I find that even though I might have a schedule and plans, I don't really know what the day might bring. So from now on I'm going to view each day as an adventure because it's more fun that way and if life is a journey I think it should be an adventurous one. 

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Funny News

It's happened again, I've actually found 2 news stories that actually made me laugh. Granted the first story happened a while back, but I still found out about it today and I really did laugh out loud when I read it!

Around Christmas time, some very nice dog owners got their pet a present he apparently adored (or at least got extremely excited about!) They got the dog 210 water bottles! (read the actual story here). Why they got the dog 210 water bottles and not 365 (one for every day of the year which would have made so much more sense of course,) I don't know. However, it's lovely to see a happy animal. I guess the next trick will be getting the excited dog to stand still long enough to teach it how to drink out of the water bottles. Otherwise the devoted owner may end up having a rather sudden flood on their hands.

More recently: A man in Florida decided to steal an ATM machine-it was a drive through machine so I guess it wasn't stuck in a building.  He used a forklift to pull off the heist. He also stole the forklift from a construction site by the way but to his credit he did take the forklift back to the site-it would have been a bit of a giveaway anyway.  (To read the full story click here).  They haven't yet found the guy so maybe all the trouble he took to steal the machine was worth it. Maybe I can see a shred of sense in his plan-instead of being messy and sticking up an entire bank, he just settled for the ATM, no muss no fuss!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Quote of the day

"Sometimes you succeed.... and other times you learn." Robert Kiyosaki - (Source:

I hope people never stop striving for success or wanting to learn. I like to think that anything that's worth doing is worth making mistakes in the attempt. If something doesn't work the first time, at least you can have the hope that it might work next time.I really believe things work out in the end and with that in mind I can believe that anything is possible.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Amusing things that happened today in history-just because I love history!

Just because I felt like it and it's fun, I looked up some interesting things that happened in history on January 10th. To increase your knowledge of slightly useless information see below. (Information came from:
  • 1912 - World's 1st flying boat's maiden flight happened, (Glenn Curtiss in NY)-apparently boats aren't just for water anymore.
  • 1925 - Miriam (Ma) Ferguson sworn in as TX gov, nation's 2nd woman governor-Texas sees the light!
  • 1932 - "Mickey Mouse" & "Silly Symphony" comics syndicated-It's Mickey Mouse's birthday!
  • 1941 - Joseph Kesselring's "Arsenic & Old Lace," premieres in NYC- Favorite quote from this play: "Mortimer Brewster: [on the telephone] Yes, operator, I'd like the Happy Dale Sanatorium, Happy Dale, New York. Come on, operator, what's taking so long? They're just across the river. I could swim it faster! No, I don't want the Happy Dale Laundry. I want the Happy Dale Sanatorium. Sanatorium, sanatorium, sanatorium. Yes, yes, like a broken record. Hello - what? They're busy? Busy? Look, they're busy and you're dizzy. No, I am not drunk, madam, but you've given me an idea!"[throws down the phone in disgust]
  • 1946 - 1st radar contact with Moon- "Fly me to the moon....."
  • 1958 - Jerry Lee Lewis' "Great Balls of Fire" reaches #1 on the UK pop charts- Goodness gracious!
  • 1967 - PBS (the National Educational TV in the US) begins as a 70 station network-today I don't know what I'd do if PBS didn't exist. I suppose I'd survive but I'd never be able to watch Downton Abbey or Sesame Street! Clearly my life would be incomplete!
  •  1990 - "Les Miserables," opens at Mechanic Theatre, Baltimore- they couldn't wait One Day More to see it!
  • 1997 - 1st Comet of 1997 Discovered: Comet 1997 A1-every year should have a comet!
  • 1997 - 4,000th episode of "Entertainment Tonight" aired-I wonder how long it would take to watch all 4000 episodes consecutively (and still remain entertained throughout)? On second thought-I'd rather not find out-I'll just lie down til that urge passes!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

What do you think when you listen to the William Tell Overture?

Quote of the day: "My definition of an intellectual is someone who can listen to the William Tell Overture without thinking of the Lone Ranger." - Billy Connolly

If you care to test this definition of an intellectual listen to the William Tell Overture below. When I  first heard that music all I could think of was someone running very fast. No idea what I thought they were running to, or away from, I just thought of someone running. Whether I'm an intellectual or not, I still like the William Tell Overture even though I've no plans or desire to run very fast when I listen to it! 

MMy definition of an intellectual is someone who can listen to the William Tell Overture without thinking of the Lone Ranger.
Billy Connolly

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Blue Sky

I heard this song called Mr. Blue Sky by Electric Light Orchestra, a British group from the 70s and 80s and in typical fashion I like it because when I heard it and read the lyrics it made me feel good.

Mr. Blue Sky

Sun is shinin' in the sky
There ain't a cloud in sight
It's stopped rainin' ev'rybody's in a play
And don't you know
It's a beautiful new day hey,hey

Runnin' down the avenue
See how the sun shines brightly in the city
On the streets where once was pity
Mister blue sky is living here today hey, hey

Mister blue sky please tell us why
You had to hide away for so long
Where did we go wrong?

Hey you with the pretty face
Welcome to the human race
A celebration, mister blue sky's up there waitin'
And today is the day we've waited for

Hey there mister blue
We're so pleased to be with you
Look around see what you do
Ev'rybody smiles at you

Mister blue, you did it right
But soon comes mister night creepin' over
Now his hand is on your shoulder
Never mind I'll remember you this
I'll remember you this way

Mister blue sky please tell us why
You had to hide away for so long
Where did we go wrong?

Hey there mister blue
We're so pleased to be with you
Look around see what you do
Ev'rybody smiles at you

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

There's Hope

Today I was reminded of a song by India Arie that is literally called "There's Hope." What I like best about the song is its refrain, part of  which states that: "It doesn't cost a thing to smile. You don't have to pay laugh." I'm a fan of this part of the song especially, because it reminds me that smiling and laughing are some of the best things to do. I suppose if you took the quote another way and thought that if you could get people to pay you to smile and laugh (e.g. become a good comedian/actor) people might laugh all day long just to get paid. However, the altruistic side of me likes to think that the best and truly meaningful things in life, like love and happiness are (and should be) free to give and receive. So I'm grateful everyone has the basic ability to laugh and smile because it's a wonderful gift to have. Plus I've found that laughing and smiling can be one of the few positive things that are contagious. Sometimes when I think I'm not having the greatest day,  the idea that I can laugh and smile  and that it could help other people to do the same, makes things not seem so bad after all. So I'm writing this and smiling in the hope that the smile spreads!  To listen to the whole of "There's Hope" song click here.

Monday, January 6, 2014


Today is Epiphany which according to Christian tradition is the day celebrating the revelation of God the Son being human in the form of Jesus Christ. Or less complicatedly, it's the day when the Magi (3 Wise Men to all you people like me, who like Christmas carols) visited baby Jesus.

Religion aside, I like that there's a day that celebrates an epiphany, or someone realizing something big and important, since I like discovering new things for myself. I hope everyone discovers something new  for themselves  or looks for something new to think about each day. To me, discovering something  or having a big idea doesn't have to be earth shattering (as most of the stuff I just "discover" I'm quite sure has really been "discovered" long before I got around to it!) it just has to be something I haven't thought of before. It's having the hope that each day will bring something new, that gives me a strange sense of hope and this hope somehow makes me feel happier. So here's to discoveries and epiphanies! May they always be found in the most unlikely places!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Songs To Dance To

If I could,  I'd dance all the time because it's fun and it's always made me feel good to dance. As that's the case, I was thinking about music I like to dance to and thought I'd list some of the songs so that when you feel the urge to dance, you have something fun to dance to as well.  My favorite dance songs include:
  • "Are you Gonna Be My Girl?"- Jet-I can't help dancing like crazy when I listen to it. (Listen Here)
  • "Fell in Love with a Girl"-The White Stripes-I can rock out to it any time. (Listen Here)
  • "Girl Named Tennessee"- NEEDTOBREATHE- A friend had me listen to this song and I've liked it ever since. (Listen Here)
  • "The Middle"-Jimmy Eat World-I like the song's message and it has a nice beat!
  • "Happy"-Pharrell Williams -The song is happy to a fault and because it makes me happy I can't help but dance!
  • "Shout"-Isley Brothers-It's fun! (Listen Here)
  • "Jump, Jive an' Wail"-The Brian Seltzer Orchestra-I like dancing to this because it feels stylish and fun at the same time.(Listen Here)
  • "It Don't Mean a Thing if you Ain't Got that Swing"-as sung by Cleo Laine-Maybe I'm old fashioned but this song still makes me feel like swinging! (Listen Here)
  • "Rockin' Robin"- Bobby Day-It's fun and it makes me feel like a little kid again. (Listen Here)
  • "Twist and Shout"-The Beatles- I like twisting and shouting! (Listen Here-I thought this video was funny too!)

Saturday, January 4, 2014

1 year old blog

It's official! I've now posted on this blog for  a year as of today! (I'm making today this blog's birthday even if it hasn't been 365 posts just because I feel like it and I can!) Ever since I started writing this blog I've come to see how it's meant more to me each day. In committing myself to posting something positive each day so that that positivity can spread, I feel like I've become more positive person which has helped me get through times that aren't so... happy. What I especially like about keeping this blog is that it gives me a way to reach out to people. I figure, if I can make someone smile every day, then I'm doing pretty well. So here's to another year of this blog and the continuation of my goal to always make each post a dose of happiness for everyone!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Cold weather jokes

Since it's rather cold in Boston I thought because laughing makes me feel warmer, I'd post some jokes about cold weather.  (No I did not come up with them myself, I just thought they were funny! :) They came from these websites:; and
    Q. What's the difference between 'weather' and 'climate'?
    A. You can’t 'weather' a tree, but you can 'climate'!

    Q:What is the opposite of a cold front?
    A warm back!

    Q: What's an ig?
    A snow house without a loo!

    Q: If the sun shines while it's snowing, what should you look for? 
    A: Snowbows!

    Q: When are your eyes not eyes? 
    A: When the cold Arctic wind makes them water!

    So now I'm going to cuddle up in bed and hibernate  at least til the windchill gets above 0 degrees Fahrenheit! Stay warm everyone! (If you're already living in a warm climate, today I'm officially jealous of you but my spirit feels warmer thinking about such warmer places!)

    Wednesday, January 1, 2014

    What I learned in 2013

    What I learned in 2013

    To laugh often because it makes things so much better
    Even though it's not always easy, loving people is one of the nicest things to do.
    I also learned to look for silver linings-even when things are hard, there's always a way to get through
    I learned that while I might stumble and fall somehow I get back up
    While inwardly shouting "Take that!" to whatever got me down
    I didn't always think I could do that but I know I can now.

    I learned that there's so much beauty in everyone's spirit
    So much life and love people give
     So much strength in people
    It is that life and love and strength that inspires me
    And helps me to keep believing in humanity
    And how good it is to live!

    I have learned more about the things I want
    Especially the things I want to be
    I want to be there for people
    Just as people have been there for me
    If someone feels sad or in need of a friend
    I learned that I want them to know they can find one in me

    So yes in 2013 I learned and did quite a bit
    And there's still so many things I want to accomplish
    After all, there's no limit to what one can do
    As long as I'm willing to set my mind to it!
    So here's to 2014 and all the days it comes with
    And I hope each one brings a lot of happiness to you!

    Maggie cooks an adventurous dinner

    Because it was New Year's Ever last night I decided to get all fancy and make dinner for my friend who was coming over. I ended up deciding to make chicken coq au vin. (Since it had a French name it sounded very sophisticated to me.) The way I made it it seemed rather like a chicken stew but it turned out surprisingly well so I was happy and my friend liked it so that was a bonus! I found that the best thing about recipes is improvisation! It took about an hour to make in total.  Here's what I put into the mix (makes more than enough for two women to eat and have a lot left over!):

    1 package of chicken thighs (slightly more than a pound)
    1 clove of garlic chopped
    4 mushrooms
    1 cup of red wine
    1 cup of chicken broth (or enough to cover the chicken when it's cooked) 
    Chopped onion (as desired-can't remember how much I put in but it wasn't a lot)
     some salt and pepper
    thyme (as desired can't remember how much I put in either but it wasn't a lot)
    1 bay leaf
    1 tablespoon of tomato paste
    3 Tablespoons of flour
    2 tablespoons of softened butter
    Sat and pepper (sparingly)

    I first chopped up the mushrooms, garlic, and onion. Then I got the chicken thighs out and put salt and  pepper on it. I then put just enough oil in a frying pan to coat the bottom but not thickly. I put the chicken in and let it cook on medium heat until it was done thoroughly but not fried completely. I turned down the heat slightly and added the onions mushrooms, bay leaf, thyme, and garlic along with the red wine, tomato paste and chicken broth. I took the chicken pieces out of the pan and put them in a bowl. I then covered the sauce and let it simmer for about 10 minutes. While it was simmering, in a separate bowl off the heat, I mixed the butter and flour together. Then once it had simmered down a bit, I poured the sauce into the butter and flour mixture to thicken it. Finally I put the chicken in the sauce and it was done!  Just to be healthy I heated some frozen vegetables for about 5 minutes and boiled some potatoes until I could stick a knife through them and have it come out clean. The end result with the chicken and sauce and potatoes and vegetables on the side was quite nice!

    I also made a salad of spinach, sliced onion, sliced mushrooms (left over from the Coq au Vin) cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, candied almonds orange flavored cranberries and small pear slices and topped it with oil and vinegar dressing. 

    Overall the whole dinner went off really well and it was a lovely meal to end the year!