20 Secrets to Happiness or something like that   2 comments

Life can throw you a one- two punch out of the blue.  Last year and early this year was one of those times for me.  Instead of a one- two punch, I got the three-four-five-six punches….. they just kept coming.  How do you get through tough times that keep on coming??  Here’s my current list.  I’m sure it will change over time but so far here’s how I keep smiling:

  1. Staying connected to my Creator–church, prayer, reading the bible, prayer,  did I mention prayer?
  2. Meditation–I’m new at it but it keeps me grounded
  3. Aromatherapy–Joy™ is one of my favorites, it smells great and reminds me to be joyful, it’s my Joy in a bottle
  4. Gratitude Journal–some days the best I could say is “thank you for the sun shining”.  It works, now there’s more to be grateful for
  5. Compliment others
  6. Smile and say hello, in the words of Joel Osteen–“being unhappy won’t change anything for the better”
  7. Random acts of kindness– increases serotonin, get creative, the world needs more kindness
  8. Appreciate moments of silence– Take the oppt to pray or listen to God’s voice, He speaks very quietly
  9. Exercise–burn off the frustration
  10. Go to bed early– it gets the day over
  11. Talk it out– a friend, a therapist, the car, walls, just get it out!!
  12. Reading–words are powerful & meaningful>>affirmations, inspirational quotes, books, other blogs, right now on hooked on Chosen Families
  13. Music– love it>>Classical in the am(makes me smarter), dance music for exercising, gospel for inspiration, relaxing music at night before bed, jazz, country, Christian, reggae, & classical,  somewhere in between.  That’s  a lot of music.  Thank you Pandora.
  14. Work–I happen to have a really great job
  15. Food–Eating healthy–if you want your body to function well you have to fuel it with good, healthy foods.  I feel the difference. Everyday and I mean everyday I need my Luna bars and a handful of nuts.  Don’t feel right without them.  A piece of dark chocolate is also very good
  16. Drink–no not alcohol, TEA.  Hooked on them, now having several cups a day, just discovered the Teavana tea shop  
  17. Get out in nature–I love walks in the woods, staring at a lake or feeling an ocean breeze.  God is there, I can sense His presence
  18. Hobbies-As I tell my kids ” I do actually have a life”.  There’s things I like to do 
  19. Dr. Weil’s Mood Support Formula— very helpful during the wintertime
  20. Stay hopeful for the future–It’s going to get better.  In the words of Louise Hay  “we are never stuck”

What are your keys to happiness?


Blogging every week in 2011   1 comment

I’m new at blogging and so far I love it.  It combines my passion for  talking about health & wellness and writing.

I will be posting a blog at least once a week for all of 2011.

It will be fun, inspiring, awesome and wonderful.  Check out other bloggers on  The DailyPost with similiar goals.

If you already read my blog, thank you and  I hope you’ll encourage me with comments, likes, and goodwill along the way.

Brenda the Happy Blogger

blog,blogs,buttons,computer keyboards,computer keys,computers,computing,keyboard keys,keyboards,keys,text

Posted March 13, 2011 by Sunflower in Wellness

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Ash Wednesday: Give it up for Lent   2 comments

It’s Ash Wednesday and although I’m  not Catholic or Lutheran, I still give something up for Lent. It’s a way to spiritually and physically discipline myself. And so……. I’ve given up crackers, rice, potatoes AND  bread for 45 days. And I’m a carb lover. I don’t eat much of those foods anyway but I do love them.  It’s the least I could do for Him who gave His life for me and continues to bless me today.  My co-worker is giving up meat. We’ll encourage each other along the way.

Are you participating in Lent?

Posted March 10, 2011 by Sunflower in Spirituality

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Hot Flashes Be Gone!!!   Leave a comment

Menopause represents a hallmark time in a woman’s life. The end of  menstruating,  fertility, birthing, and a shift from childrearing to self-focus.  It’s a  wonderful time in a woman’s life. However  in the US many women have menopausal symptoms that disrupt the should be joyous time of menopause. Symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, difficulty losing weight, insomnia, low energy, low libido become bothersome.

In 2004 the HER II study was halted because of the increase in Breast cancer and the decrease in the cardiovascular benefits thought to be enhanced by hormone replacement therapy (HRT).  In the end the risk did not outweigh the benefits.  Prior to that Premarin was the number 1 selling drug many years in a row. Now many health care practitioners are reluctant to prescribe HRT.  The new recommendations with taking HRT is for the lowest dose and the short time possible.  

Women in the US overall have a more difficult transition into menopause. Whereas women in other cultures, especially in Asian cultures have spent a lifetime of  eating soy products, vegetables and fish which contain nutrients that support and balance the female hormone system. And they have been physically active.  

So what are we to do? Thankfully there are several good natural remedies that work. They work with the body to support the female hormone system so that over time the symptoms improve.  I can speak from experience, I had a surgical menopause in my 20’s and spent many years on HRT.  Not only did HRT not improve the symptoms but I experienced side effects that made it difficult to take them everyday.  Now that has changed.  

The 1st is a product called Progessence Plus Serum, it contains progesterone which is one of the primary female hormones.  It can convert to estrogen in the body. Estrogen in the primary female hormone. In menopause the production of estrogen is decreased by the ovaries.  

The 2nd is a supplement Femigen which contains herbs to support the female hormone system.

Essential Oils that support the female hormone system: Clary Sage, Sclaressence, DragonTime.

The last  product is a tea, Yogi Woman Energy Tea. You can find this at your local health food store.

Yogi Woman's Energy, Herbal Tea Supplement, 16-Count Tea Bags (Pack of 6)

 *Other helpful tips:  physical exercise, acupuncture, stay cool, recognize your moods

Great Resources:

Books: Dr. John Lee’s – What Your Doctor May Not Tell You  About  Menopause  

               Dr. Christiane Northrup: Wisdom of Menopause

Hot Flashes Be Gone!!!

Be more like a tree   2 comments

I like flowers but I LOVE trees.  And since I’ve moved to Maryland 10 years ago  I love them even more. 

Years ago a friend of mine had a book on trees which at the time I thought was so strange and boring.  But my  mind has completely changed and NOW  I have a book on trees.

Trees are amazing.  We can learn a lot from them. 

 They …..

  • bend
  • breathe
  • grow
  • change
  • give back so others can benefit
  • shelter
  • produce
  • beautify the world


                       Trees are grounded to the earth but reach towards heaven. 

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Resiliency is like a  tree branch bending in the wind, not breaking but bouncing back.


Tree Oils–wonderful oils to help you breathe





Balsam Fir




Posted March 8, 2011 by Sunflower in Natural, Wellness

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Music for Meditation   Leave a comment

After to listening to hours and hours of Pandora nature sounds music I’ve come up with some suggestions for music during meditation.


Sacred Earth Drums                                                   Spiritlands                                             

Sacred Earth Drums                                                       Spiritlands     


Spiritual Healing                                                  Sea & Silence

   Spiritual Healing                                                        Sea & Silence


Sounds of Nature                                            Appalachian Mountain Suite                                                                    

Sounds of Nature                                                  Appalachian Mt Suite        


Windsong                                           Heart of the Wind: Music for Native American Flute & Drums               

       Windsong                                                       Heart of the Wind


Dan Gibson's Solitudes: Exploring Nature With Music: The Classics                                       Dreams from the Grandfather

Dan Gibson’s Solitudes                          Dreams from the Grandfather      


Garden of Serenity                                       Music for Meditation: Inner Stillness

Garden of Serenity                                              Inner Stillness

Posted March 6, 2011 by Sunflower in Meditation

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I'm training for a 5K   4 comments

I know you must be asking yourself “she’s training for a 5K”? Did she mean marathon or even a half-marathon. No I mean a 5K. I’m almost 50 years old and I haven’t run a 5K since I was in my 20s and back then I was slow. But it’s on my list of things to get back into doing. It’s a twofer, get in shape and support a great cause.  It’s Jeremy’s Run to benefit Drugfree. org and the Kolmac Foundation.

The run will be on Memorial Day in Olney, MD,  so I have 3 months to get in shape enough to run ~3.1 miles.   I exercise pretty regularly but running is quite different from walking and gliding on an elliptical.  For me running takes not just physical energy but mental energy. Every step says “stop”.  This time I plan a different physical and mental strategy.  I”ll start out running a 1/2 mile then 1 mile, 1 1/2 miles then 2 miles until I reach 3 miles.  Mentally instead of whining and crying I’ll encourage myself and challenge myself to go further and tell myself  that I feel fine.  My mindset is so different now than it was 20+ years ago.  I criticize myself less and encourage myself more.  

I could walk it but I want to run it, that’s what everybody else is going to do and I want to run while I still can.  My knees still work great and my back feels ok.   I might be slow but as long as I finish  I’ll be happy.



Posted March 2, 2011 by Sunflower in Health, Wellness

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