We are Halloween people and usually we start our Halloween preparations at least a week or more before the big event.  This year we’ve been so busy it was tempting to just carve a single pumpkin and buy  candies – c’est tout!   We just can’t do it!  We even tried to put out just a few things – can’t do that either.  Wednesday is Halloween and we’re just getting everything up tonight only to be taken down in a couple of days.  In the midst of all the preparations, my oldest decides to make chocolate chip cookies for the gang that’s coming over Halloween night.  I’m thinking there will be enough candy  and chocolate bars to last us until next year!  He insisted and rather than complain about the mess –  I said go for it!   Tomorrow I’ve got one big pot of chilli to cook and a house to clean.  I can leave the dust because dust and Halloween go together.  Lots of work but look at those smiles, makes it all worth it…Wishing everyone has a safe and fun Halloween..


Thought you were a friend,

a friend who cares,

a friend to laugh with when there’s not a care in the world,

a shoulder to cry on when there are too many cares,

for a time I believed that you were just that friend,

but anger, envious and jealousy,

you’ve let move in,

always worried about what the other has or hasn’t,

instead of seeing the beauty

that exists within,

there is no talking or changing,

your very stubborn mind,

it’s time to move on,

forget, forgive and let live,

however, the friendship I thought we shared,

like an elastic,

has been stretched too thin,

just like the saying goes,

reasons, seasons and lifetime,

only time will tell,

which friendship ours is….



I enjoy thrifting but have to admit that it’s hard for me to see beyond what I’m seeing.   There are people out there who can look at a piece of junk furniture or an item like a sheet and design something fabulous.  Not me  – the sheet stays the sheet and the junk furniture stays the junk furniture.  But I admire people who possess the kind of  talent that can create something from nothing.  I follow a blog called “Life as a thrifter” and this lady does some pretty amazing things with junk or forgotten items.  When the boys were young, like all children, they loved to hide and pretend they were away at a camp or in a fort.  I remember using an old sheet and moving a table to the middle of the room and draping the sheet over the table so the boys could create a  fort under the table.  Kept them busy for hours, they played lego under the table, they read books under the table and they also made the fort home base for hide and seek.  Now I thought I was pretty imaginative but take a look what “life as a thrifter” did with a sheet to make a fort – can’t believe I never thought of this one because the damn sheet would never stay on the table and being me I duct taped the sheet to stay in place, which only lasted so long!  All pictures are from life as a thrifter as I don’t possess the kind of talent to take these pictures!

Life as a thrifter” check it out.  My boys are too old now for this amazing fort but for those of you who still have young children what a treat…



I’ve been following rejuvenation for a little while – the blog offers really good tips for healthy calm living.  “Trust” is from this blog – I have an issue with the word trust and it’s hard for me not to worry.

Trust Manifesto:

I’ve been collecting and creating for many years affirmations and statements on the word ‘trust”.   Thought you might be curious as to some of my favourites so I’ve shared them below.

Fingers crossed that one or more resonates with you and offers the perfect inspiration or at the very least a moment of comfort. Enjoy beautiful friends as life is all about sharing.

1. Give yourself permission to trust. Know its safe to trust.

2. TRUST you don’t need to know all the answers  right now.

3.  Trust. You can breathe deeply into any worrying thought or situation. Soon things will start to dissolve and shift with the spaciousness you give it.

4.  Trust in the 3 taps theory.  If you’ve heard or read about something or someone three times, then trust the universe is trying to get your attention.

5. Your ability to profoundly relax is in direction proportion to TRUST DEEPLYin your unique flow in life.

6. Don’t worry, plan or over think. Trust there is divine timing for everything.  Simply hold the space in the palm of your hands in complete knowing.

7. Words, silent or spoken have an energy flowing through them.  Your words create and therefore matter.  Repeating the word “I trust” will trigger a positive chain reaction.

8. If you are pushing or forcing a situation perhaps you are unintentionally blocking support from the universe. Trust.

9. Trust. Stop forcing things to go your way.  It interrupts the flow of a magical life.

10.  When nothing is working.  Do nothing.  It creates the space for flow to happen again.  Trust.

11. Just for today stop, step back, let go of the re-hashing and over analzying of stuff.  Breath space into your thoughts. Trust everything will be OK.

12. Welcome the unknown. Simply Trust.

Peace, love and chocolate, Carole

Email me anytime:  healthylivinglounge(at)



This salad is delicious – haven’t posted a recipe in a while because I’m too busy cooking, cleaning and trying to get to bed early so I can get my beauty sleep – but this recipe is a keeper and  I found it on – amazing website – double click on the heading apple spinach salad below for a great recipe.  If you don’t like blue cheese, like my children, substitute the blue cheese for cheddar curds – tasted wonderful… Enjoy!

Apple Spinach Salad


If you haven’t heard the Amanda Todd story then you should watch this video.  Media says she was bullied to death – she recently committed suicide.  Not long before her suicide she made this video telling her story.  There’s more to this story than bullying, in fact I’m not sure you can call it bullying.  Amanda was abused and victimized.  The kids who assaulted her need to be charged and the man who blackmailed her needs to be found and put in jail.  He’s a sexual predator creeping on young insecure girls through the internet and when he doesn’t get what he wants from them he ruins their life.  That’s what happened to Amanda, he threatened her and then he followed through with his threat.  He knew everything about her, her address, her school, her friends – it’s damn scary.  You think your kids are safe behind closed doors.  The other side of this story is what society is doing to young girls.  How is it we’ve come so far but not really.  It’s nothing new that young girls are interested in being pretty and desirable to men, but it’s gotten out of hand today.  All the images that girls receive from the media adds up to one thing – girls can never be good enough – we need to be perfect or else we won’t be loved.  My sister is ten years my senior and I can remember when I was young all the kids in my neighourhood considered her to be beautiful.  That’s all I heard “your sister is so beautiful” and she really was beautiful and still is beautiful.  The ridiculous thing is even adults were going on about her being beautiful and I had adults saying to me “if you grow up to be half as beautiful as your sister you’ll be lucky!”   What a bloody stupid thing to say – what was I chopped liver?  Why do I have to look like by sister to be considered beautiful, why can’t I look like me and why is beautiful such an important thing?  I can happily say that I never hated my sister, nor did I spend my life wishing I looked like her.  I don’t look anything like her but I’m me and she is she, we are both unique and we both have many different qualities.  Back then we didn’t have the internet and I hardly watched tv so there weren’t these images popping up in front of me all the time telling me that I had to be perfect, but society back then did the same thing society does today – look how beautiful your sister is, you will be lucky if you look like her. Today images of beautiful, perfect woman are constantly on display to our children telling them that this is what you have to be to be happy and successful.  It was a load a crap what the neighbours said to me about my sister and it’s a load a crap what the media is saying to our children today.  The perfect woman is not the images you see on tv or in the magazine.  The reality is most of these woman have major insecurities and spend a lot of money on cosmetic surgery only to be forever unhappy.  That’s the message we should be getting across to our children rather than idolizing beauty, fame, and money.

Essentially that’s the sad part of the Amanda Todd story – she was innocently looking for attention on a chat line, looking to be admired and considered beautiful.  Really no different than a lot of girls but the result of her insecurities ended up being on public display for everyone to see.  The picture of her flashing is forever out there and she can never get that back.  Amanda’s video is so much more powerful than the flash picture and if she just hung on another day maybe she would of been just a little bit stronger and went on to help girls her age dealing with the same issues.  The difference between today and tomorrow is just that – another day.   Another day could be the day you’re waiting for, another day could be the day you will be strong, another day could be the day that you feel confident, another day could be the day that you make a difference in someone’s life, another day could be the day that you feel happy.  Without another day there is no hope, there is only sorrow, so grab another day and run with it, make it your day, every single day.  Amanda wrote her story and she shared her words with everyone – learn by her words and look around you because there are plenty Amanda’s out there in desperate need of a friend.

“Today’s beautiful moments are tomorrow’s beautiful memories.”


I blogged about the newest additions to our family a while back “our new furry friends”  – yes we added two Guinea Pigs to our very busy lifestyle and it was only after I purchased these two cuties did I realize that I had no idea what journey I was about to embark on with these little rodents.  When we brought the two of them home, it didn’t take me long to realize that the cage I spent $80.00 on was not going to be big enough. These little guys need room to run around.  The boys called the white one Thunder and the little multi coloured guy  Lightning.  I noticed fairly early on that Lightning peeped all the time, I thought it meant he was happy but there were times when one of us would be holding him and petting him his peeping became very loud and almost sounded agitated.  A couple of times he just jumped right off our chest crashing down onto the floor.  It was weird behaviour but not knowing how a Guinea Pig behaves I had no idea what it was other than he was a peculiar animal.  We only had them a couple of months and we went camping down the Oregon coast.  We have a trailer and instead of asking someone to look after the little guys we took them with us.  They both did pretty well travelling in the truck, we gave them lots of tlc and food.  We were camping for a couple of nights when I noticed Lightning looked completely paralalyzed.  He could only get around using his front legs and his back end was completely out of order.  We considered if maybe the trip took more out of him than we thought and then I said to my husband, “something has been off about Lightning for a long time, do you think it’s possible that he has scurvy?”  He looked at me like I was crazy, why would he have scurvy?  Guinea Pigs, like humans, do not produce vitamin C and have to get it from their food source.  They get store bought pellets that are vitamin C enriched, plus hay and twice a day I feed them fresh vegetables or fruit and make sure they get produce that has vitamin C.  Scurvy seemed unlikely but his illness seem to be on-going.  At this point Lightning was managing to get food but he could not get water, we had to hand feed him the water and he refused.  He would push the water bottle away, he would push your hand away or he would hold his head in the other direction so you couldn’t give him water.  How long without water he could last I did not know, I made sure he got lots of lettuce and cucumbers so he could hydrate that way.  Finally we decided that he was most likely going to die because he could barely lift his head and you could see how sick he was in his eyes.  I tried to make an appointment with a vet while we were in Oregon but it seemed like we couldn’t get into see anyone down there – maybe they were all surfing but they were either closed or too full to see us.  We were heading home in a few days so we just kept doing what we were doing and headed home.  The day after arriving home we headed to the Vet’s office.  He told us that Lightning either had a respiratory infection or an inner ear infection and needed anti-biotics.  I’m looking at this little Guinea Pig flopped on the table and I’m thinking “really, he’s not going to survive.”  I voiced that to the vet, I said “really look at him he will not drink water, he can’t move, he’s in a bad way and now I’m going to spend a $100.00, realistically what are his chances of getting better?”  “No offence, but Lightning cost me $24.00, I’m not spending a bunch of money to have a sick Guinea Pig.”  Of course the boys and my husband were with me looking like I was the cruelest person.  The Vet said to me “it’s not going to cost you $100.00 for the medication, more like $60.00, and this little guy is still young and he may be able to come back.”  So off we go get the antibiotics and administered the meds for two weeks, try giving a Guinea Pig something he doesn’t want – not fun.  After two weeks he seemed a little better but still not right, still unable to walk and his back legs just stuck out back and was not able to move them.  Lightning seem to take a turn for the worse and again I was sure he was going to die.  By this point the little guy had been fighting so hard we were all trying desperately for him to stay alive.  But how fair was it, he couldn’t move, spent most of his day on his back, all of his muscles seem be going lax and we had to hand feed him water and food.  I started researching on the internet and went back to my original theory that Lightning had scurvy.  Sure enough I found an article by a scientist who had studied Guinea Pigs and scurvy and there it was –  a picture of Lightning or so it seemed, back legs sticking out, muscles completely lax and unable to move.  The article went on to say that Guinea Pigs with scurvy are in constant pain and petting them can bring severe pain, I went back to when we first got him and the constant chirping like he was trying to tell us something and the couple of times he literally just jumped right out of our hands.   I was right about one thing, he was dying and now it might of been too late to do anything because his scurvy had advanced to the most serious stage.  The article also said that Guinea Pigs who received a round of Vitamin C for a couple of weeks showed vast improvement.  I thought what the hell, I went to the store, bought a $5.00 jar of vitamin C, cut the pill in fours and gave one to Lightning and one to Thunder.  Amazingly, it took a couple of weeks but very slowly Lightning started to get stronger.  First good sign was his back legs came up underneath his body and he was able to stand, not for very long and he would fall over, but for a minute he was able to stand.  Over the next couple of weeks he slowly got his strength and balance back.  The picture you see above is current, a month ago the picture would of been of him lying on his back.  He still falls over but he is one hundred percent better.  I don’t feel guilty about leaving him alive because I do feel he is getting a good quality of life, he can get around on his own, get his own water, his own food.  Life is good.  Pictured below is the big cage we built for the two of them, I call it Piggie condo because it has a section that has three stories – they are much happier now..


The community I live in recently started a new recycling, garbage program.  We all received these beautiful new bins(big bins in the pic).  One bin is for organics, one is for recyclables and the other for garbage.  City also gave us a little bin to put under our sink for food scraps that go in the organics.  The organic bin houses everything, paper napkins, soiled pizza boxes, coffee grinds still in the filter and pretty much all food (including meat).  The recyclable bins holds all cans, bottles, boxes ect  and the garbage bin houses everything that doesn’t go int the first two.  New garbage trucks have been added to the city crew and every week the organics is brought to the curb alternating between garbage one week and recyclables the next.   Eventually those new garbage trucks are going to be fueled by the organic bins.  Big undertaking – amazing how little garbage  I now have, three or four small bags for the entire week….

garbage for on week – see way down at the bottom of the bin….

recycling for the week – busting over the top….

Here’s to a greener world…..