The Task Tamer

Are You Busy Living?

Teri 08/06/2018 Comments

“Get busy living or get busy dying.”

-Shawshank Redemption


I am not a big movie buff. I rarely go to the theater nor do I watch many at home. However, I have seen the Shawshank Redemption and the above quote nicely sums up the movie. I highly recommend watching it if you have not. The majority of the movie takes place in a prison, Shawshank. The characters spend years serving their sentences. Some react with anger, some with despair, some make the best of it, others are miserable and some never give up hope. I feel these reactions can translate to so many situations we find ourselves in, either by choice or circumstance. 


When Tim Robbins character, and later Morgan Freeman’s, utter this line it spotlights the fact we always have a choice in life. We may not be able to control all circumstances, but we can control our feelings and reactions. It is an awesome power and it can affect your health, your relationships and your mental well-being. I have witnessed people who I fear might strain a muscle if they were to smile. I have been around people who radiate so much joy it is impossible not to feel like dancing around them. I know people who are so angry at whatever situation they are in they lash out at anyone nearby. I have experienced connections with people who have great outlooks on life and can keep things in perspective. 


When you choose to make the best of any situation, you are exuding positive energy. Life is precious and short and if you do not appreciate all it entails, let this be a small wake up cry. Getting busy living means different things to everyone. It might mean planning a vacation. It might mean planning a staycation. It might mean jumping out of an airplane. It might mean reading a book. It might mean running a marathon. It might mean strolling around the block. It might mean scaling Mt. Everest. It might mean watching a movie about Mt. Everest.


To me, getting busy living means finding what brings you joy and taking the time to fit it into your life. 


If you have been following my recipes recently, you might have noticed how often I make roasted, smoky shiitake mushrooms. They are so easy and taste great on everything (for those of you who think everything is better with bacon, I substitute shiitakes). So when I saw this recipe for Portobello, Lettuce and Tomato sandwiches, I had to try it!



recipe from Mark Bittman’s VB6



3 large portobellos, washed and destemmed

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

salt and pepper to taste



Whole grain bread


sliced tomatoes

sandwich spread of choice (I use Vegenaise)


Make mushrooms:

  1. Preheat oven to 400. Line two baking sheets with foil and spread one tablespoon of oil on each.
  2. Thinly slice mushrooms and place in a single layer on pans, not touching. Sprinkle paprika, salt and pepper over them and place in oven.
  3. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until mushrooms release their juices and pan is almost dry. Do not disturb them.
  4. Reduce heat to 325 and continue to bake undisturbed, until mushrooms are dry and shriveled and release form the pan, 5-10 minutes.
  5. Let cool and make sandwiches.
  6. Enjoy!



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