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All Plant-based Split Pea Soup

All Plant-based Split Pea Soup

When I was a 4 or 5  my Dad’s family lived in Santa Barbara. A couple of times a year we would drive up from Los Angeles to visit. Along the way there were always signs for Andersen’s – the split pea soup Andersen’s. The signs featured Hap-pea the big cook and Pea-wee his helper. Some even showed an elaborate split-pea soup factory. The signs were provocative and intriguing. It wasn’t long before the idea of Hap-pea, Pea-wee and a soup factory ...

Berry Smoothie

A great way to start your day and kick start that metabolism. Ingredients: 2 cups orange juice 1 cup fat free vanilla yogurt 2 small ripe bananas 1 cup mixed berries, fresh or frozen. Strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries. Blend together and enjoy. Makes 4

Pasta and Presidente

It was early afternoon in the Dominican Republic. To reach our final destination, we had to take a couple of buses, settle into the bed of a very old truck and cross a river on a horse led by a young boy who charged us five pesos. The trip required patience and stamina. A sense of humor helped, too. I was U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer. My sister Liz was traveling with me, a visitor to this tropical island for the first ...

Piglet’s 2nd Blogiversary

Piglet’s blogiversary cake Two years ago today my daughter Piglet in France introduced me to the WordPress blog platform,  and Piglet in Portugal was born. She patiently (she is not renowned for her patience when demonstrating techie stuff on the PC to Mother) showed me how to make posts, include links and upload photographs, create pages and a blogroll etc. I missed my first “Blogiversary” due to the excitement of the arrival of our first grandchild in France. So I will celebrate my ...

Reflections On Food: Five Foods To Live For…

“Food is our common ground, a universal experience.” James Beard Reflections On Food: Five Foods To Live For...? Reflections On Food: Five Foods To Live For... Thyme & Garlic grilled salmon w/ Mango salsa, Rosemary potatoes, snow peas Reflections On Food: Five Foods To Live For... Chocolate covered macadamia nuts Teriyaki Salmon, Chocolate drizzled Macadamia nut cake, Carrot Cashew soup, Kashi Cereal, Mediterranean Salad… If you could only have five food items for the rest of your life, what would you choose? When I first ...

Sydney Vivid Lights

Last weekend we went to see the Vivid light show on the Sydney buildings at Circular Quay.  In a word WOW! Vivid Light Show Sydney It was definitely worth the the hassle of parking the car in Balmain, catching a bus into the city and walking for ages to get there. Sydney Opera House We saw the Sydney Opera House as I have never seen it before – magnificient! Not to mention horses galloping across buildings…. Courses For Horses And then cars driving up them.  The technological ...

Mistaken Identity

A little later than usual, here is my effort for Friday Fictioneers this week. A big thank you to the lovely Renee Heath for the photograph this week and to Rochelle for all the time and effort she devotes to FF - we are all truly grateful. Bow, curtsy… Genre: Memoir Word Count: 100 Mistaken Identity “Stop, stop. Stop!” My son tightens his grip, his little nails dig into my hand. “What’s the matter Sam, whatever’s wrong?” I pick him up. His face is ashen. Two perfectly shaped teardrops ...

Fun Flower Facts: Hibiscus

Hibiscus are deciduous shrubs and trees which produces large, showy flowers. The plant is native to tropical regions in the world with over 200 different varieties in the genus. It is a member of the Mallow family. The trumpet-shaped flowers come in a variety of colours including, white, pink, orange, purple, red and yellow. Hibiscus are popular ornamental plants, as the brightly-coloured flowers tend to attract butterflies, bees and hummingbirds to the garden. They can be planted individually or grown as ...

Bad Luck Update and I Don’t Speak Cow

If you are new to my blog you need to start with Accidents Happen. This is the continuing story of achieving incredible dreams and finding myself along the way, NOT. This is really the story of my life as a police cadet, officer, and then detective after my midlife crisis. If I get more than one midlife crisis, I think I’ll be a spy for the CIA. (A girl can dream, can’t she?) In between felony cases, pets, gardening, and my ...

2012 Fall Wedding Flower Ideas and Trends

Summer may be the most popular time of the year for weddings, but there are brides that love the idea of a fall wedding. It’s a a gorgeous time of the year, with the changing of the the leaves and the nice, breezy fall temperatures. Warm, inviting tones like reds, oranges, and golden yellows are popular fall wedding colours. Consider using a combination of these flowers in your floral arrangements: marigolds, black-eyed susans, daisies, dahlias, roses, asters, calla lilies and chrysanthemums. Photo: ...

Tips on Growing Red Hot Poker (Kniphofia)

Red Hot Poker (Kniphofia, pronounced knee-FOE-fee-ah) is one of the showiest flowers that bloom late in the summer. While other flowers may be wilting and dying, Red Hot Poker lights up the garden with their bright and vibrant, spiky flowers in shades of reds, oranges and yellows. The showstopping colours and dramatic form add drama, texture and beauty to the landscape. These perennials are a must-have for any garden! They look best grown in groups and are ideal for borders, backgrounds ...

We Are All Creative – Part 1

Something that occurred to me today, was to talk about how we engage with creativity; why we do or don’t engage with it and about making time for it. There are many issues here to look at, so let’s list them to begin an ongoing discussion. Of course there may well be more than this. 1. We are all creative – except me that is. 2. We aren’t all born creative and I don’t have a creative bone in my body. 3. I love being ...

The Active Qualities Of An Artist

The Active Qualities of An Artist This week  I’m moving onto the Active Qualities of an Artist even though I said at the end of the last post that I would be discussing ‘making meaning in art’ because it seems I have already covered that subject in some depth. Did you know that there are 17 active qualities of an artist, which include the skills and emotional states an artist uses during the creative process. See them listed below in the order in which we draw on them as we create ...

Video Tutorial: Learn to Make a Pumpkin Vase Fall Flower Arrangement

Fall is here, which means it’s pumpkin season! Not only are pumpkins delicious in pies, they also make wonderful, seasonal decorations for the home. Pumpkins or gourds can be decorated, carved and made into flower vases. Add beautiful seasonal flowers, such as zinnias, celosias, chrysanthemums, ornamental grasses, foliage and you will have a lovely pumpkin fall flower arrangement. Mix and match flowers and foliage to create interesting textures and forms. It doesn’t have to be perfect, just have fun with it! Here is ...

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Elizabeth - Mirth and Motivation

Writing Challenge: Gift Of 1000 Hugs…

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


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


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


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...

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