Happy Fridays Stories to that make you smile!

Sometimes it takes a bit to find your perfect fit!

One of our favorite organizations, Save-A-Pet sent us a story about Deja Vu, a handsome German Shepherd that did not have a very good “kennel presence”. Sadly he was returned to the shelter twice for being him: he was protecting his family. After 2 1/2 years a very special man adopted Deja Vu. Thanks to Save-A-Pet for not giving up on this beautiful dog and to the man that gave him a chance. Look at his happy face!

If you are looking for a pet, please adopt. There are so many wonderful animals that need loving homes. You can start by checking out www.saveapetil.org 


Happy Friday! It’s never too late for love!

Flap Jack (black one), a senior cat and kind of deaf, immediately fell in love with Miz Walnut, one of our long-time resident cats…and well she couldn’t resist his charm. They would always sleep together, groom each other and Jack would always meow so loudly. This odd couple recently found the perfect home…and when it gets cold, love napping right by the heat vent.

Save-A-Pet happy landing times two!




Happy Friday! Meet the new member of our family: Tyson!

Happy Fridays! Celebrate the little things

Happy Fridays! Celebrate the little things like chocolate, Fridays and giving a dog a new home!

Our Chocolate Inspirations team is made up of family of women: aunts, cousins, nieces, moms, etc. Last year we lost Bella to cancer. Bella was a sweet golden retriever that lived with the cousins. After a year the family decided they were ready to adopt again – they put in the application to Good as Gold and soon they received a call to meet Tyson. As you can see, it didn’t take much to fall in love with the two year old golden. Tyson came to Good as Gold from Puerto Rico (yes he knows Spanish and English!) and  as you can see, Tyson is now living the good life with a wonderful family. Happy Friday! Celebrating the little things in life!

For more information on Good as Gold visit their website http://www.asgoodasgold.org/ 




Happy Friday!

Happy Fridays! A blog celebrating the little things that make you smile – like happy dogs, chocolate and Fridays! Have a great and safe weekend from Toby and Chocolate Inspirations


Chocolate Inspirations Memorial Day

Chocolate Inspirations Memorial Day

Take a moment to remember the true meaning of Memorial Day. Remember those who fought for our freedom and way of life. We are featuring our Dad’s/Grandfathers. Roland Waters of Roselle, IL and Richard Vieau of Bloomingdale Illinois. They were both very proud to serve their country and lucky to have come home and live a full life with their family. We love you and thank you.


Happy Fridays! Say Thanks to the Mom in Your Life!

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Fridays to all Moms!

Sunday is Mother’s day – a day to say thanks to the mom’s in our life. We all say it – however, many times we just roll through it. We buy a card, go to brunch; sent her Chocolate Inspirations candy-all wonderful gestures, however, does this really say we are so grateful? Nope – this Mother’s Day add something simple; write an extra thank you – a REAL thank you. Write or call, tell her a special moment when you knew she was the best mom in the world. Although mom’s love cards, good food and fabulous chocolates – they also appreciate recognition – they don’t require it but trust me they love to hear it!

This Mother’s Day reach out and SAY IT! Say THANK YOU to the fabulous mom’s in your life. This mother’s day I am lucky to celebrate with two of my favorite women- my mom and her mom, my grammies. I am grateful to have the opportunity to spend a great amount of time with mom and grammies, we work together almost every day. We laugh, plan and create together. Two amazing women that have taken care of me, kept me safe, made me a happy kid, a happier adult and helped me succeed. I have to admit, I did not realize how my mom and grandmother put their kids before their own needs until I was in my late 20’s. Before that, I, like many kids, didn’t realize how much they sacrificed.

This Mother’s Day I want to say to both of them – thank you. Thank you for being there for me, thanks for loving me, thanks for telling me I’m a jerk when I need to hear it, thank you for teaching me how to care, love and give. Thank you for drying my tears and making me smile. Thank you for being my people! I love you!

Thank your Mom! Go ahead, get the card, brunch and chocolate but don’t forget the THANK YOU!

Happy Friday! Happy Mother’s Day from

The Chocolate Inspirations Family




Happy Fridays! Stories to make you laugh, smile and celebrate people doing good things

Happy Fridays! Stories to make you laugh, smile and celebrate people doing good things

Happy Friday! One of our favorite organizations, Save-A-Pet, shared a Happy Story they received from a forever family. We at Chocolate Inspirations loved this short but sweet tale so much we had to include it in our Happy Fridays! Meet Oblina. When Save-A-Pet received Oblina’s latest picture their jaws hit the floor! From matted, hungry, and scared when Save-A-Pet rescued her in the cold of winter, to a confident girl that loves getting her gorgeous fur brushed by her family. Oblina had a long road to recovery, and Save-A-Pet is so thankful to her family for bringing her home, and sharing this happy update! The little things matter! When looking for a new pet please consider adoption there are so many loving animals in need of a forever home. Contact Save-A-Pet or find a fabulous shelter near you.

Happy Friday!!

Happy Fridays! Chocolate makes you smarter! 

Happy Fridays! Chocolate makes you smarter!

Chocolate! Oh chocolate! We adore the this rich, decadent treat! Of course it’s delicious, but the power of chocolate goes beyond the melt in your mouth taste. One bite will erase the stress of a crazy day, bring a big smile to a sad face and turns adults into wide-eyed children. It’s fabulous, magical and we have one more reason to love chocolate – it makes us smarter!

Yep, you read it correctly, chocolate will make us smarter! Of course we at Chocolate Inspirations have always believed chocolate is good for you – but this week we discovered one more reason. Roberto Ferdman  of The Washington Post  wrote an article titled The Magical thing eating chocolate does to your brain.  A study that began tracking the correlation between blood pressure and the brain found (years later) that chocolate actually helps brain function. Below we have provided a ink to Mr. Feldmans article, however, we would like to share our favorite section: people with better performing brains tended to gravitate toward chocolate(Roberto Ferdman, Washington Post”  Wow! Now that’s a Happy Friday story!

Happy Friday from Chocolate Inspirations – don’t forget to have a bite of chocolate today

To read the entire article on the study click here –



Photographs by Lori Bolas DMH Ingredients

Happy Fridays! Stories to make you laugh, smile and celebrate people doing good thingsFor nine years the Chicago Section of  the American Association of Candy Technologists have been doing something very special for a group of very extraordinary women. The event is called “Making Candy with Special People”  held at St. Mary of Providence, Residential Facility Home for the Developmentally Disabled – and it is a candy lover’s dream!

Every February, eleven confection companies (including Pam from Chocolate Inspirations) set up tables in the facility’s gym. Each company has  a different candy making activity.  About 113 of  the very happy “girls” (as they are affectionately called)  from age 18 and up arrive ready to become candy makers.

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Company volunteers, staff and Sisters assist the girls as they go from table to table making gummies, trail mix, chow mein cookies, cotton candy and dip goodies in a chocolate fountain. They can also show off their artistic talents by decorating cakes, cookies and chocolate hearts with frosting, sprinkles and other fabulous ingredients!

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They arrive to each candy activity table bubbling with enthusiasm, some very talkative, others very shy, but all are incredibly happy to be making candy. Every smile you get is an added bonus.  The St. Mary’s staff  has told us that the candy making day is the girls’ favorite day after Christmas.

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One look at the pictures of the girls shows just how excited and happy they are for their very own candy making day. Once the girls have collected all their goodies and the candy making ends.  Then AACT treats them to a pizza party for a perfect end to their day.

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This wonderful event is spearheaded  by Chicago AACT board member, Sandy Murphy. Her cousin was a resident at St. Mary’s so the organization and all involved are very dear to her heart. The first year Sandy encouraged the companies to participate in the new event.  However, after that first year, she no longer needed to encourage the companies, they loved the event as much as the girls! They all return year after year – no question – the girls literally captured their hearts.

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All the confectionary volunteers leave making sure Sandy knows to contact them for next year.  They will all be back because the girls are such a special gift they cherish throughout the year.

We wanted to share this amazing story and recognize Sandy Murphy and all the confectionary companies and volunteers that make this event possible! Small things matter! A few hours, gummies, chocolates, cakes and sprinkles brings incredible happiness to so many.

Do something small and make someone happy!

For more information on St. Mary’s visit their website – http://www.smopchicago.org/




Chocolate Inspirations Happy Fridays Stories

Happy Fridays!

Chocolate Inspirations Stories to make you smile

Stacey and her family rescued adorable Azu however they had no idea they would soon have a home full of tennis balls. The day Azu came to his new home Stacey purchased tons of different dog toys to welcome him. The simple tennis ball was his immediate favorite. Well, a yellow tennis ball to be exact. According to Stacey, if it’s not yellow,  it is not an acceptable play toy to Azu. Each morning, after Azu goes outside, he grabs his tennis ball and follows one of his family members until they play with him. It’s not typical game of fetch. Azu prefers his family to attempt to grab the ball from his mouth and his role is to never let them have it. A game Azu feels are hours of fun for all and always wins.

This sweet dog is also quite talented; Azu can hold FOUR tennis balls in his mouth at one time and often falls asleep with one in his mouth. If Azu isn’t around  it usually means there is a lost ball under the bed. Stacey will find him laying on the floor, half his body under the bed, waiting for someone to retrieve his lost ball. Due to Azu constantly carrying, holding and playing with the tennis balls they crack and break often. It became quite the investment to keep replacing Azu’s favorite toys. Stacey recently posted an ad asking if anyone had used tennis balls they would like to give to Azu. A wonderful man answered her ad and met Stacey with a donation of what she said is “a ton of tennis balls” for her sweet pup. The picture is of Azu still in shock at his amazing good fortune. Talk about winning the dog lotto! Currently Stacey and her family are working on teaching Azu to drop the ball to play an actual game of fetch. As she said “we will see how that goes.”

Thank you Stacey and Azu for sharing your story! We hope it gave you a good laugh! Happy Fridays!

February 12, 2016

Happy Fridays! Today is a story from one of our favorite places! Save-A-Pet. After 12 years at the shelter Sunny has found a home!

Happy Fridays Pet Adoptions

Happy Fridays Pet Adoptions

Sunny left the building earlier this month with a one-way ticket: HOME! Save-A-Pet is truly exceptional because of its mission, unconditional life and unconditional love for all our residents, but also because of our people, both staff and volunteers that cared for him and loved him during his almost 12-year stay with us. Sunny will be lounging on the couch with his new family…and will continue to enjoy the occasional burger from the drive-through. You just cannot ask for a better start of the year! This is what Save-A-Pet is all about!

When looking for a new buddy for your home please adopt! There are so many wonderful animals waiting for a new home!



Chocolate Inspirations Happy Fridays

Chocolate Inspirations Happy Fridays

Happy Fridays! Stories that make you smile!

Happy Fridays! Stories that make you smile!

Small things matter! This week’s story features a three year old boy wishing he was part of the basketball team and a very cool coach making it happen!

Quinn is a mighty 3 year old who is obsessed with sports.  He would go to all of his 8 year old sister’s  basketball games and cry that he wanted to be on a team.  At the time he was only 3, so there were no basketball teams for kids his age.

Quinn’s dad Matt was an assistant coach to the team called Orange Crush, and Quinn would often ask to help him.  The head coach Tim, saw how eager Quinn was and asked Quinn if he would please help coach the next game.

Quinn beamed from ear to ear and told anyone he could that he was going to be the coach at the next basketball game. To Quinn, this was like being able to coach the Chicago Bulls – he was that excited!! Quinn then told his dad that he had to dress “fancy” to be the coach.  So the day of the game Quinn dressed himself in a button down shirt (what he calls his fancy shirt), a tie and a sport jacket. He was ready!!

During the game Quinn mimicked everything Coach did.  If Coach was kneeling on the floor calling plays, so was Quinn.  He got to lead the team cheer at the beginning of the game, and was on the bench cheering the girls on the whole time.  It was a dream come true for a little 3 year old who would do anything to be involved in something athletic.

Happy Friday to coach Tim!


The Chocolate Inspirations Pups Twas The Night Before Christmas

The Chocolate Inspirations Pups Twas The Night Before Christmas- Click Picture to view their You Tube Video

Happy Fridays!

Happy Fridays This Week Save A Pet

Our Happy Friday’s blog will feature a new Happy Story celebrating people doing good, making others smile or just a fun story to make you laugh!

Our first Happy Friday’s story comes from a fabulous organization- Save-A-Pet in Grayslake, IL. and the wonderful people that support their cause. Meet Paesan, a beautiful cat without a home and a few medical issues. Thanks to the amazing people at Save-A-Pet and their donors, Paesan was loved and cared for until he found his forever home. Save-A-Pet writes on how grateful they are to all of their supporters but we also want to salute them for loving and caring for the pets that need homes.

Gratitude. Appreciation. Thankfulness.

 Unconditional Life, Unconditional Love …thanks to everyone that supports us!

Our donors allow us to rescue cats that have nowhere to go, just like Paesan. Not only did he have a history of stomatitis, but he was also asthmatic and had to use an inhaler every day. Not the picture of your most adoptable cat.

We never give up! He waited 6 1/2 years to find someone that would love him unconditionally. Save-A-Pet, through its permanent foster program, will continue to provide for his stomatitis and asthma medical care. “Thank you” are two little words that don’t even begin to describe our gratitude for allowing such special stories to take place. Unconditional Life – thanks to your generosity, Unconditional Love – thanks to his special family.

One of the many reasons we are thankful this year!

For more information on Save-A-Pet – www.saveapetil.org