A to Z Guide to Happiness

Two cute dogs, Bella the Westie and Ollie the Papillon, show you how to be happy and bring happiness wherever you are, by following their paw steps with their friends and family.
You will see them having fun, relaxing, following their dreams and giving all their love. They will give you tips on finding and spreading happiness and inspirational quotations.

Read Pascal Inard's full bibliography here with list of all published and forthcoming work.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Happy 25th Wedding Anniversary

My pretty Mom is preparing to celebrate something very special ! 

She is celebrating her silver anniversary - that means that she's been married to Daddy for 25 years !

Look how much they are still in love, aren't the little love birds cute ?

And this is what they drank for the party :

It smells kind of strange...

But look closely, it has my name on the bottle, isn't that amazing ?

YellowGlen Vintage Bella, Sweet, Pink and Luscious. Yes I am sweet, I like pink, but I don't know about luscious....

Take care my friends and have a great week !

And if you want to read about their wedding, this is the story : (published on www.myfrenchlife.org)
Pascal Inard, 09/07/2012 

On the first of August of this year, Isabelle and I will celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. It’s a perfect time to look back on our wedding day in France and relive some very happy memories.
It was a lovely summer day in the little village of Biviers, in the heart of the French Alps. Its proximity to the city of Grenoble has attracted many well-to-do families who are able to drive the 20 minutes to Grenoble for work and shopping. They can also enjoy magnificent views of the Belledonne mountain range and a rural lifestyle.
There are still a few farms in the area, including the dairy farm of the mayor, Monsieur Charpentier. His cows walk past the wooden chalet of Isabelle’s parents twice a day to go for pasture in the nearby field of the Saint-Hughes Convent.

Pascal Inard, 09/07/2012

The Belledonne is where Isabelle and I had met a year before. I was back in my hometown, having left it with my parents thirteen years earlier to go to Melbourne. On a hike with the Club Montagne Amitié Soleil which I had just joined, there was a violent storm.
As lightning was falling around us, I had a coup de foudre (stroke of lightning) – a French expression meaning love at first sight. That’s when I saw Isabelle, the love of my life, for the first time.

Pascal Inard, 09/07/2012

Families from the six corners of the hexagon, as the French like to call their country, had arrived the previous day. My parents had flown from Melbourne a week before.
The preparations had involved family and friends. My uncle Gérard printed the invitations. The caterer and the supplier of dragées (almonds covered in sugar that are traditionally given to guests at weddings) were acquaintances. Père Louis, who was a friend of Isabelle’s family, agreed to officiate at our wedding.
Isabelle was magnifique in her dress with laces and flowers in her hair. We walked from her house to the mairie where Monsieur Charpentier was waiting for us. His speech was very warm as he knew Isabelle’s family well. I proudly held my livret de famille and noticed that there was room to register eight children – a legacy of our parents’ generation where large families were common.

Pascal Inard, 09/07/2012

The church was small enough to be intimate yet large enough to accommodate all our friends and family, who congratulated us after the beautiful and moving service that Père Louis had prepared.

Pascal Inard, 09/07/2012

A merry cortège of men, women and children walked back to Isabelle’s house. They were happy to be united for such a joyous occasion and were looking forward to the festivities. A very pleasant apéritif in the garden followed.
We had reserved a lovely reception place for dinner and decorated it the day before. A palate cleanser (sorbet or calvados) was served between each dish. We all sang classic songs such as ‘À la claire fontaine’ and amusing ones such as ‘J’entends le lit qui craque’ (‘I hear the bed creaking’).

Pascal Inard, 09/07/2012

The dessert was a traditional pièce montée with cream-filled choux and was covered in caramel.

Pascal Inard, 09/07/2012

We left before the end to rest after this busy day because we knew what awaited us. After the guests had enjoyed a soupe à l’onion in the early hours of the morning, Isabelle’s brother and their friends came knocking on our door for the traditional chamber pot. It was filled with chocolate and champagne and decorated with toilet paper and we had drink out of it. It’s a tradition known as la rôtie.
Now we have three children aged 22, 19 and 13 and we are preparing to celebrate our silver anniversary with them and our two dogs Bella and Ollie.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Beautiful Vintage cards

Our Dad's grandmother Marguerite spent her childhood in the early 20th century. She loved to write to her grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins who were so dear to her. She loved the postcards she or her parents received and she treasured them. Much later, this collection allowed her to relive the moments of her youth. 
100 years after, our Mom and Dad used many of these postcards in their book "Dear France, sweet country of my childhood". 
Now our Mom has given them a new life, full of colours; she loves using birds, flowers, butterfly and lace in her creations and the results are fantastic. They are all available for sale as high quality cards and greeting cards online on Redbubble

Take care my friends and have a great week-end !

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Together, we can all make a difference !

Winter has just started here in Australia and already it’s cold in Melbourne. I always wear my beanie to keep warm, but Mom told me there are many humans that don’t have a house and they are very cold because they don’t have anything to keep warm. I think it’s very sad so I asked Mom if we could invite them to our house. She said our house isn’t big enough but there is something we can do to help them.

 “We can knit some beanies and also some squares to make blankets” she said. That’s a great idea, but how do we find these people to give it to them ? Are we going to go in the streets and sniff them out ? “No, we don’t have to, there’s a group of lovely people called Tight Knit World. They use the donations where they are most needed, here but also in Africa, Nepal and Indonesia. I’ve been knitting squares and beanies with our friend Katie and we bring them to Julie at Tight Knit World. She puts together the squares to make blankets and then she takes the blankets and beanies to a soup kitchen where they give them to people who are cold”.

That’s wonderful, do they send beanies to Africa too ? Is it cold there ? “It gets cold at night, but they also make dolls that they send to children in South Africa who have lost one or both parents. It’s called the Uthando Project ; Uthando is a Zulu word that means love”. I’m glad we can help these children too.

So, I’m going to help Mom make lots of beanies and squares. If you want to help too, have a look at the web site   and find out all the projects that they support, there are lots of them ! It’s a great feeling to be able to help, because as Julie says “One person can make a difference – Many can make a bigger difference !”

All this knitting has made me tired, I’ll think I’ll have a rest...

Doing something to help those in need helps them but it also gives us joie de vivre. Mom and Dad are going to write a book on joie de vivre and it will be written in English and French, like their last book. They are interested to know what  gives you joie de vivre; if you want to send them an email about your joie de vivre, they would be very grateful and will include it in their book. Send anything you like, a text, a poem, a photo, a drawing….


Take care my friends and have a great week !

Sunday, May 13, 2012

The story of our fuzzy slippers !

When we were children, we both loved dogs; Isabelle’s dogs was called Vania, Pascal’s dog was called Fifi.

When we had our children, we lived in France in an apartment but it wasn’t a good environment to have a dog. We missed having a dog in the family, but it was a good thing we didn’t have one because bringing it to Australia would have been very difficult. They don’t allow dogs unless they are put in quarantine and it would have been a traumatising experience for both the dog and us. Later when we found a house with a fenced backyard, it was time to think about having a dog. Isabelle had fallen in love with Westies a long time ago when she saw a commercial on TV for a famous brand of dog food.  Pascal looked forward to having a pair of fuzzy slippers like Fifi was.

When we saw Bella for the first time at her breeder’s house, it was love at first sight, but we had no idea how she would change our lives.

Bella is a very fussy eater so we had to find the best dog food for her. She also loves the pancakes we make ! She is very playful and affectionate and complains very loudly if we forget that it's time for her walk
One day, Isabella started trying some clothes that had been worn by our children when they were little on Bella. She found that they suited her and that she was patient and enjoyed all the attention she was getting when Pascal was taking photographs, not to mention the treats she was getting afterwards. The movie “Julie and Julia” gave us the idea to start this blog and the popularity of the blog led us to publishing a book “Paw Steps to Happiness”.

This book brought a lot of happiness around us, we gave some to the Australian Animal Protection Society, Starlight children’s foundation and some retirement houses.
After Bella’s book, we wrote a book on our country of birth "Dear France, Sweet country of my childhood". It was recently featured in French Provincial Magazine.

We are now preparing another book and we say thank you to Bella for giving us this wonderful opportunity . She is such a wonderful friend for us, we don’t mind that she isn’t our fuzzy slippers, we have found these instead !

Take care my friends and have a great week-end !

"I've got my own fuzzy slippers, they're great for keeping my ears warm !"

Friday, April 6, 2012

Move over Crocodile Dundee, Crocodile Bella is here !

I wonder what this is, it looks yummy !

It's delicious !

What's happening ? I feel funny !

Oh my dog, what is this ?

Bella help, it's gonna eat me !

Move over Crocodile Dundee, Crocodile Bella is here !

Don't you worry Ollie, I'll get him !

{After a long battle...}
Would you like some crocodile steak for lunch Ollie ?

- What happened Ollie ? 
- After you ate that mushroom, you started barking something about a crocodile !
- Yes, it was trying to eat you and then we ended up eating it !
- I think you had a bad dream Bella, you better stay away from those mushrooms !

Take care my friends and have a great Easter !
If you've enjoyed reading this article, you will love our book "A to Z Guide to Happiness - A gift from dogs to their owners (and everyone else).

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