Motivational Monday: Recipe

green beans

Fourth of July will soon be here, and I wanted to share my new favorite green bean salad recipe. This is so easy and delicious, and pretty too!  Make several days ahead if desired, and store in refrigerator. Great served at room temperature, but cold is okay, too.

Green Beans with Red Onions and Olives


1/2 cup minced red onion
3 teaspoons balsamic or red-wine vinegar
3/8 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil

Additional Ingredients:

1 1/2-2 pounds fresh green beans, washed and cut in half (or frozen–but the whole bean kind if possible).

7-10 black or Kalamata olives (how many and what kind depends on your tastes, but I prefer Kalamata), pitted and chopped into about 8 pieces/olive

In a bowl, stir together dressing ingredients. Let sit while you cook the beans and chop the olives.

Steam beans until just tender. Don’t overcook! Pour on dressing while the beans are still hot. Stir in olives, mixing well. Cool to room temperature.


Until Wednesday, and happy cooking!


Fantastic Friday: Go ahead, get messy

take chances

Love this message because it reminds me that things don’t always go as expected. It’s good  to be flexible (not always easy, though!), stretch beyond our comfort zones and take that risk.

Sometimes a scary proposition, no? But the rewards can be fantastic–even if they don’t pan out. Just think what you learned!

Until Monday, and wishing you messy chances,


Hump Day Wednesday: It’s All in the Definition

optimist cha cha

The way we define the world determines how we see life and how we react to the things that happen in our lives. I like this definition for its positive slant on what is inevitable for everyone.

Like it or not, life is messy. It is also a balancing act. With frustrating frequency, curve balls fly at us, seemingly from out of nowhere, and cause us to lose our balance. Failing, stumbling backward and/or heading off on the wrong track are realities we’d prefer to avoid. When that isn’t possible, seeing those setbacks as part of the dance of life makes it easier to pick ourselves up and try again.

Cha-cha on!

Until Friday, and wishing you joy,


Motivational Monday: Brain Food- It’s Not Just the Edible Stuff

farmers market

Fresh fruits and veggies, free range chicken and duck eggs, low-mercury fish, nuts and seeds, raw honey, local cheeses and breads, hand-made ice cream and homemade pasta–does it get any better? And bonus, many of these are brain food! Here in Seattle, neighborhood farmers markets abound from May- October. Almost every day of the week, fresh food enthusiasts will find a farmers market someplace in the Seattle area.

Our biggest market, Pike Place Farmers Market, stays open year-round, along with two other neighborhood markets that I know of (Ballard and University).


A chance to taste and purchase these delicious and nutritional foods, often picked the very day of the market, aren’t the only reason I enjoy visiting the farmers market. I also go for the smells and the colors– but most of all, for the people. Overhearing snippets of conversation, watching a small child with her mom, laughing at the antics of an enthusiastic dog–all become fodder for the creativity mill in my head. More than a few times, the things I see and hear play into a story I’m working on or thinking about.

If you’re looking for ideas, give your brain a food boost and visit your local farmers market.  I guarantee you won’t come away empty.

Until Wednesday, and wishing you good food in whatever form,


Hump Day Wednesday: Make Your Thoughts Count


thoughts can change your world

Lately, this little gem has been on my mind a lot. I realize that I hold myself back with limiting thoughts. I’m thinking writing here, but other things as well.

Great, but… Now that I acknowledge having those limiting thoughts, what’s the next step?

Why, to simply let go of them.

Not so easy, you’re thinking. I know, because I used to think the same way.  The sad truth of the matter is that I’ve been clinging to these limiting thoughts as an excuse to do what I’ve always done. Not that that’s bad. I’ve had a fair amount of success.

And hey, doing the same old, same old is comfortable. Moving in different directions is a bit scary, like standing at the edge of a cliff without a net. But at the same time, change is exciting, a place where Nooooo! Stay back here, where it’s safe! meets Here I go–Whee!

Lately I’ve taken to repeating a powerful sentence at least once every day. I’m eager to share the words with you. Feel free to repeat them yourself. I am letting go of limiting thoughts and creating limitless possibilities and dreams for myself today.

What a great statement, huh? And it’s working. Already my thoughts are changing, and wow! With the changes come an unexpected burst of energy and enthusiasm that’s been missing from my life for a while now. I can hardly wait to find out where my new way of thinking takes me!!

Until Friday and wishing you a world of limitless possibilities,


Fantastic Friday: Don’t Miss This!

Honey Moon

Honey Moon, 2013. Photo Credit: Stephen Rahn

Today is a very special day–the amazing combo of Friday the 13th AND a full moon. Not just any full moon– a “honey moon.” This kind of moon derives its name from the golden color, a result of the full moon very close to the summer solstice.

Don’t miss it, but if you do, the next time a honey moon occurs on a June Friday the 13th will be 2098!

Until Monday and wishing you a perfect viewing of the honey moon,


Motivational Monday: Take A Walk

burke gilman june

Photo: A section of Burke Gilman Trail, Seattle (developed from an old rail trail)

I love summer, and here in the Pacific Northwest, there is so much to see and do and enjoy. One of my favorite activities is walking in the great outdoors. My preferred walk-time is late afternoon or early evening, when I’m tired and muzzy-headed from a long sit in front of the computer.

As soon as I start moving, my mind and body wake up. It’s great to listen to the sounds of summer: kids laughing and playing, birds calling, dogs woofing. And the smells–the sweet scent of clover and other flowers or freshly cut grass. The slanting sun feels good on my arms and shoulders, and the breeze is light and warm. What a lovely way to end a day of writing. As I write this, I can hardly wait to get out there and go!

Until Wednesday, and wishing you a gentle unwinding at the end of a long day,