Reflections: In Hindsight, Optimism Prevails…

“Optimism is the light of God. It is a form of grace which allows you to be much more perceptive and to look at life with greater clarity.” Amma Reflections: In Hindsight, Optimism Prevails… Monkeys at rest in an outdoor spa When I started my blog, back in 2008, I was a deer in headlights. I had no idea where it would lead or if it would last but, one thing I knew for sure was that I wanted to add a ...

Hope: Braving the Storms of Life…

Ah, Hope! What would life be, stripped of thy encouraging smiles that teach us to look behind the dark clouds of today, for the golden beams that are to gild the morrow. Susanna Moodie Hope: Brave Earth - A view from outer space via Wikipedia Everywhere we look there are storms brewing and spreading; in nature and man-made. Winter snowstorms here at home; families cooped up, in cabin fever mode. Explosive events in Egypt; protesters clashing, people hurt, and families worried. Flooding ...

Don’t kill those dandelions!

Dandelions (Taraxacum officinale) get a bad rep. No one seems to like those bright yellow  flowers that seem to grow everywhere.  They are considered ugly and intrusive. Homeowners spend countless hours and resources trying to get rid of them.  But you know what? Dandelions are more than just weeds! There are so many practical uses for them. Health Benefits: Dandelions have been used throughout history in traditional herbal medicine. Native Americans, Chinese, Egyptians and Greeks all know about the health benefits of ...

Inspiration: I Wish I Could…

“If I were to wish for anything, I should not wish for wealth and power, but for the passionate sense of potential — for the eye which, ever young and ardent, sees the possible. Pleasure disappoints; possibility never.” Soren Kierkegaard Inspiration: I Wish I Could... Enjoy and share fruit...with gratitude Inspiration: I Wish I Could... Enjoy The Scream and share the proceeds...with love I wish I could… When I read this week’s prompts from MamaKat’s Writers Workshop, the fourth one caught my eye; I ...

The Dress

I sneaked off last week, did you miss me?  I spent a week in Spain, just outside Puerto Banus; I found the sun ( must tell Sandra) enjoyed some lovely food and a really relaxing time. I missed Friday Fictioneers due to poor internet connection, so have a lot of catching up to do. Thanks go as usual to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for keeping FF going each week, where would we be without her? Thanks for the photograph this week go to Janet Webb.  It is  very ...

Defining Moment 1985

"There are moments that define a person's whole life. Moments in which everything they are and everything they may possibly become balance on a single decision. Life and death, hope and despair, victory and failure teeter precariously on the decision made at that moment. These are moments ungoverned by happenstance, untroubled by luck. These are the moments in which a person earns the right to live, or not." Jonathan Mayberry, Rot and Ruin By the spring of 1985 I was 21 years ...

What is Flowering Tea?

Most of you will agree that watching tea steep is like watching paint dry. It’s not fun and it’s not something people do. But if you ever have the opportunity to try China’s infamous flowering tea, you might just want to pull up a chair. Flowering Tea, also known as blooming tea, are bundles of tea leaves and flowers that slowly blossom right before your eyes when steeped in hot water. These tea bundles are sewn by hand in China by talented ...

2013 Bloemencorso Zundert Flower Parade

While most people around the world are getting ready to go back to school or back to their normal routines, the town of Zundert in the Netherlands celebrates September with a world-famous flower festival! Every year since 1936, Zundert organizes the world’s largest flower festival on the first Sunday of September. Tens of thousands of visitors from all over the world come to see the extraordinary, larger-than-life floats in fantastical characters and shapes. Amazingly, all the floats at the Bloemencorso Zundert ...

How We Treat Money and Kids the Same....

We have all heard stories about the down-and-out individual who has never caught a break in their life but wins the lottery out of the blue.  Then 12 months later the same person is broke and in a worse condition than if they had never won the cash. That same scenario plays out with inheritances or trust fund recipients who ultimately come of age. Switching gears, we’ve also heard horrific stories of child abuse where a toddler soils their diaper and ...

My SCL Guest Post: Nine Unsavory Bible Snacks

My SCL Guest Post: Nine Unsavory Bible Snacks

Today's a big day for me as a writer. No, I didn't win a Pulitzer or Dayton Literary Peace Prize - but it's almost as good. I've written a guest post that's being feature on Jon Acuff's outstanding web site Stuff Christians Like (SCL). SCL is a satirically irreverrant, yet always respectful, look at all things Christianity. Jon's observations and writing are sharp, witty, crisp, howlingly funny, spiritually provocative and often moving. He's kind of like a Christian John Stewart - that is ...

7 Questions With an Author: Rob Shepherd

Author, pastor, blogger speaker – Rob Shepherd Here’s another installment of “7 Questions With an Author…” and today’s featured writer is a personal friend of mine, Rob Sheperd. Rob is the lead pastor of Next Level Church in Newport News, Virginia. He has a Master of Divinity degree and a bachelor’s in youth ministry. He writes six times a week on his blog robshep.com, which averages more than 8,500 unique views a month. Rob and his wife, Monica, have a set of awesome ...

Searching For a New Paradigm?

Today’s guest post comes courtesy of an online writing acquaintance of mine, Les Dossey. He’s a writer, speaker and life coach who specializes in helping men become high performers in all areas of their life – personally and professionally. If you’d like to submit a guest post yourself, here are the guidelines. ============================================== Is it acceptance, opinion, religion, doctrine, tradition you seek, or Truth? Be warned… ignoring or answering that question, will change your life. 13 years ago that question meant nothing to me. The world from my ...

A Roaring Success!

What’s better than dressing up in roaring ‘20s style for a fabulous night? Dressing up in roaring ‘20s style for an important cause. Catching up with Stephanie Haney, www.themovemagicians.com CASA of Collin County recently held their annual gala to benefit abused and neglected children, and the night was a huge success! The event is the organization’s largest fundraiser of the year and always receives tremendous local support. Held at the exquisite Hotel InterContinental Dallas, Clarice Tinsley, an Emmy-award winning broadcast journalist, opened ...

Calling All Bloggers: Share Your Best 9/11 Writing

Zero Hour - courtesy of National Geographic This is a post about you as an individual and us as a nation. I'm asking any and all bloggers who have written about the 9/11 disaster - which occurred 10 years ago this weekend - to share a link to their best blog post they've ever written on the topic. It doesn't matter if it was written five years or five minutes ago. Please provide a 2-3 sentence description in the comments section below as ...

Yikes – Two Months without Posting

Some artists, brave souls, create in full view of their audience. I would be ashamed of myself, except the main reason for my absence is that I was writing/revising/reading toward a better manuscript. No excuse, you say? You’re probably right. But I’m still on the blog-learning curve. I find that my more automatic go-to spot for communicating re book stuff is my Yours In Books Facebook page (click on the “Facebook” button in right margin). It’s quick, noninvasive, and ties directly/efficiently ...

Unexpected Orange

From pumpkins to autumn leaves, orange is everywhere this time of year. But why is a color that brings smiles to so many faces and even inspires fall foliage tours seldom used in interior design? Simply put, while most people are not afraid of color, they are afraid of choosing the wrong color. So they choose colors they think are “safe.” And while understandable, this can be a mistake and a missed opportunity because the power of color is undeniable. Orange is considered the ...

Please visit the authors blog by clicking on the link below!

Elizabeth - Mirth and Motivation
January 28, 2013, 11:00 am

Writing Challenge: Gift Of 1000 Hugs…

“Everybody needs a hug. It changes your metabolism.” Leo Buscaglia

couple-embrace

Writing Challenge: Gift Of 1000 Hugs…

“I will not play tug o’ war.
I’d rather play hug o’ war.
Where everyone hugs instead of tugs,
Where everyone giggles and rolls on the rug,
Where everyone kisses, and everyone grins,
and everyone cuddles, and everyone wins.” Shel Silverstein 

Hello there! My name is Hugo and I’m a hugaholic… I capture images of people and other life forms sharing a hug; in common and unusual settings. I travel around the world as a freelance photographer for a news outfit, and every chance I get, I encourage people; couples, kids, families, even strangers, to exchange a hug for my Hugging Hearts – Hug Another Soul Today photography project. How did this hugaholic hug fest start? Keep reading…

The first shot above, was taken in Portugal next to an Alexandre Farto, aka VHILS installation. The couple in the shot, Jorge and Carmelita, are good friends not lovers. We met in Lisbon on special assignment and they offered to show me around. I’ll come back to their story in a bit. We definitely bonded and they exemplified what Farto said in describing his silver funicular car that “Beyond nationality lies our most essential humanness.” That humanness also defines the universality and power of a hug…

“A hug is like a boomerang – you get it back right away.” Bil Keane

mata_amritanandamayi

Writing Challenge: Gift Of 1000 Hugs…

There’s something in a simple hug
That always warms the heart,
It welcomes us back home
And makes it easier to part….
Johnny Ray Ryder, Jr., “A Simple Hug”

How did I get into the hugaholic photography business? I wasn’t born that way even though my mom told me I was the happiest and most huggable baby of all her five kids. My move from being a regular, self-conscious stiff Joe to Mr Hugaholic, began five years ago. I was a film major at HK University and took a course on creating documentaries. My professor advised us to find a subject of interest, interview them and document it.

I mentioned the project to my best friend Jenna and she suggested we go see the beloved hugging saint, Amma, who was in NY for a few days. I was curious and agreed to go. “Should I bring my camera equipment? Ask for an interview?” I asked Jenna. “No,” she said, “Just bring yourself and be present with an open heart.” I had reservations but went as planned. It changed my life. We arrived at the Center mid afternoon and watched as thousands of people gathered and stood in line to meet Amma; each got a hug.

We waited patiently for our turn and when it came, I knew something in me had shifted. I was swept away by the most tender, loving hug that enveloped me, lifting away my worries and fears. I felt cocooned by a deep love as the sweet smell of jasmine filled the air and Amma whispered blessings in my ears.  She soon released me, smiled at me with compassionate eyes, handed me an apple, sweets and sent me on my way.  I floated away feeling peaceful and quiet inside in ways I had never felt before.  Suddenly, a voice rose inside me, “Go share your hug a 1000 times over, and then share it 1000 times more.”  it said.  And I did. More below!

“A hug is worth a thousand words.” Author Unknown

hugs

Writing Challenge: Gift Of 1000 Hugs…

Hold a friend’s hand through times of trial,
let her find love through a hug and a smile;
but also know when it is time to let go -
for every one of us must learn to grow. Author Unknown

The next day, Jenna joined me on the streets as I stopped and asked people if they’d been hugged and if they’d share a hug and a story. I captured it on camera and shared the results with my professor. I got an A but kept going. Each hug I got filled me with happiness, love and peace; always reminding me that hugs cut across all boundaries and make our humanity shine. I joined the Free Hugs Campaign,  enjoyed offerings on HugsUnlimited and built my portfolio.

I’ve accumulated hundreds of photos, plus Jorge and Carmelita are my 999th and 1000th hug. When we first met, they were volunteers in an Orphanage and suggested I create books and support orphaned babies. I agreed I would when I reached my 1000th hug. They helped make it happen and I’m grateful for that.  I also thank Amma for her special hug that inspired me. If I meet you on a street somewhere, be sure to ask me for a hug.

Soon, I will create my coffee books and start the next set of 1000 hugaholic shots. I’ll share any proceeds I make from my hug photos and coffee table books with an Orphanage (all kids there get regular hugs) in another part of the world. Stay Inspired. Have a blessed day and thank you for stopping by!
*Please bear with me as I continue to catch up on your blogs. Thank you all for your patience!

Happy 2013! This post was inspired by a prompt from WP Daily Post: Weekly Writing Challenge: 1,000 Words, Take Two.  Your challenge this week is to write a post based on this picture: Who are these people? What’s their relationship? Could you use a hug? Why?

Positive Motivation Tip: A hug and humor can save the day… Give someone a hug today!

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All Photos: Amma via Wikipedia,

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

Elizabeth - Mirth and Motivation

Motivate. Elevate. Laugh. Live Positively… I am a mother of two, sister to many and a card-carrying certified optimist. My family and friends are golden because our love and trust is unequivocal. I've traveled, I've lived, I've had my share of happiness and hurt and I remain grateful for God's grace in my life...

Leave a Reply

  

  

  


*

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>