Being able to look back at things that annoyed you and laugh. Things like having my seat kicked by small children on every flight on the way to and from England makes me giggle now. At the time, I was fairly sure someone was going to take note of the steam coming out of my ears. Today, I smile and remember that that’s just my kind of luck.
How good it feels to know that you have supported a worthy cause. I’ll be honest with you, I don’t always have a lot of funds to spare, but I do love the way it feels when I do and can give a little to the charities I believe in. And of course, even when you don’t have funds to spare, there are other ways to support your favourite charities. I like to donate my hair to Locks of Love, for example, and your time is always a valuable commodity.
Money you didn’t know you had. Reaching in to the pocket of your winter coat and finding a $20 bill that you’d forgotten about since last year, as an example.
Knowing that someone loves you, no matter how irritated they might be with you in a given moment.
Coming in from the cold. I would honestly prefer to be a little too cold than a little too hot, but those first few moments when you come inside to a very warm house when you’re cold (and maybe wet) are lovely.
The look of freshly fallen snow. I do not like actually being out in the snow, but I think the world looks lovely covered in it.
Travelling by train. I really find this method of travel relaxing, particularly the lengthier journeys, provided the seats are comfortable.
JELLY BABIES! Being a fan of Doctor Who, I’d of course, heard of Jelly Babies, but it wasn’t until very recently that I got try them. I love, love, love them. Especially the black ones. Here in the States, the vast majority of candy that colour is licorice, of which I am not a fan. I almost passed up the black Jelly Babies, until Alex told me that they’re black currant, not licorice. His mistake.
A Rainbow Over Eden Project. Two things to be happy about in one photo.
I should be doing the laundry and at least starting to pack. Instead, I’m here expounding upon my own personal list of things to be happy about. And waiting for Alex‘s lunch hour, because I’m really missing the sound of his voice. The laundry and the packing will wait… though not for long.
The Sims You go ahead and judge me if you must, but I freaking love The Sims 3. I’ve been playing Sims forever, and TS3 is my favourite. TS4 can die in a fire, though. It’s more like The Sims 2.5 since they took away open neighbourhoods and CaSt. I refuse to move on to TS4 without CaSt, even if I could live without open neighbourhoods.
Pumpkin Pie. If I would be just a little bit less lazy about it, I could have pumpkin pie all the time. There are very few things that I know how to cook, or bake, but I can do scrumptious pumpkin pies.
Halloween. I’m not that big on most holidays, to be honest, but I do enjoy Halloween. I’ve not dressed up for it in years, but I do love to see the costumes on the little trick-or-treaters who come by. And, even though I’m not actually much of a fan of horror films, I am looking forward to spending Halloween with Alex, and cuddling up with him to watch whatever scary stuff he chooses. The scares are just good excuses to bury my face in his chest and snuggle up closer, right?
Never completely growing up. Of course we all have to grow up to some extent, and be responsible, productive members of society, right? But that doesn’t mean that it’s not still sometimes fun to sit on the porch steps and blow bubbles. 4 cups of water, ½ cup of dish soap, ⅓ cup of honey and a good bubble wand makes for some really awesome bubbles.
Cupcakes! Aside from Alex, I don’t know very many people who don’t enjoy cake, at least now and then. Cupcakes are awesome because you get a whole cake all to yourself, without having to feel quite so much guilt as you would for eating, say, an entire sheet-cake.
BLTs. Oh, how I love bacon. My mouth is watering right now, and I think I need to stop putting food on the list. I’m starving!
The sound of my cat(s) purring. Apparently I angered one of the cats, I’m not sure which, in the middle of the night last night. Kitty was apparently so ticked off that his or her yowling woke Alex. Suffice it to say, I’m glad that both of them seem happy with me this morning.
Making up after a fight. I’m also thankful for little things like the way Alex never raises his voice at me on the rare occasions when we do argue, even when he’s asking me to please stop yelling.
Technically I should be farther along than week four, but I’m nothing if not inconsistent.
Booking plane tickets. Being able to travel somewhere, but especially if it’s to see someone you love.
Making new friends.
Peach Mango Sunny D. Oh, seriously, it’s delicious.
The little domestic things you do together with your significant other. Cooking. The grocery shopping. Maybe it’s because I don’t usually get to do these things with Alex that I’ve learned to really appreciate them.
When someone you care for lets you know that they appreciate you. I mentioned in a previous post that my little cousin Dylan is often in my care, and he’s had some serious injuries. The other day, when I was discussing leaving for England, Dylan told me, “I’m mad you’re going before I’m all better”. It’s not as if he came right out and said thanks, but I still understood it to mean that he likes having me around to look after him.
Red licorice. I cannot stand black licorice, though. Seriously, ew.
When Alex calls me on his lunch break. I miss him very much when he’s working, and it’s nice to know that he misses me, too.
Spring. As someone who is not a huge fan of snow, it’s always really nice to see it start to melt away, and the flowers start to bloom.
The silly things you hear when your significant other is dreaming or talking while still only half-awake. This morning, Alex woke and mumbled to me, “Stop trying to sell my kidneys. We can afford the plane tickets, it’s fine”. I had to mute the microphone I was giggling so hard. For the record, I’d sell my own kidneys before I’d try to sell his.
Receiving random compliments from strangers. Well, as long as they aren’t creepy compliments.
Donating time or money to worth-while causes. I know that people often think that donating money is the thing to do, and of course, money helps. But if you can’t donate your money, your time is valuable, too.
Hearing from friends you haven’t spoken with in a while.
Last week I wrote a post called “Fourteen Thousand“, in which I made a short list of things that make me happy. I thought that maybe, in the spirit of never taking anything for granted, I might make a short list every Friday from here on out of things that, well, make me happy.
Yes, I know I didn’t write the first list on a Friday, but, “14K Fridays” sounds nicer than “14K Wednesdays” and Fridays tend to make me happier than Wednesdays, anyway. We’re going to call this Week 2. Right, enough babbling, on with the list!
Doing the laundry. Yes, you read that right, doing the laundry makes me happy. I love the way everything comes out of the dryer hot and smelling like heaven.
Spring. I just love when winter comes to a close and the days get a little longer. As much as I may complain about the Midwest, spring is really lovely here. It’s not too humid yet, and there’s usually a lovely breeze (or, well, full-on wind, but hey, still nice). I love when I start to hear the birds chirping every morning, and the crickets start singing their songs at night. (The cicadas can go fuck themselves, though, thank you very much).
Tulips. Without a doubt they are my favourite flower. A couple of side notes: One, I am not a huge fan of the idea of giving or receiving cut flowers. I’d rather be given seeds (or bulbs) to plant or a potted plant of some kind. I’ve never complained about receiving flowers, as the thought counts, and that would be rude, but I just like the idea of living flowers better than ones that are slowly dying in front of your face. Two, I dislike roses immensely.
The way that Alex never sees my flaws as flaws. Listen, I’m not putting myself down here or anything, but, honestly we all have our imperfections. Thing is, Alex never seems to see mine as imperfections, and frequently points them out as things that he loves about me.
The sense of satisfaction I get from completing a project. I’m remarkably hard on myself, so when I hit a point at which I look at something I’ve been working on and say, “That’s great. I’ve finished”, I can honestly say I’m proud of it.
The cool side of the pillow. As much as I love doing (and folding) the laundry, there’s few things finer than crawling into nice crisp sheets and resting your head on the coolness of your pillowcase. Thankfully, once you’ve warmed up the one side, you can extend the pleasure by flipping your pillow over.
The feel of lush green grass under my bare feet. As a little girl, I used to get into so much trouble for running around barefoot all the time. As an adult, I do what I want.
My teddy bear. Yes, I just said I was an adult. I also said I do what I want, so if I want to continue to sleep with my childhood teddy bear, I will do just that. He’s kind of a large bear, and he’s great for laying my head on. He might be a little … erm … smooshed because I’ve been laying my head on his formerly fluffy teddy bear chest since… forever.
Tea. Dear England, I’m totally on board with this tea thing. I love a nice hot cup of tea with milk and two sugars. Of course, being Southern by heritage, if not by current location or birth, I also love sweetened iced tea.
Homemade toffee-flavoured lip balm. Yes, I make it myself.
I’m not actually planning on listing 14,000 things here in this post, but I did own a book entitled 14,000 Things To Be Happy About. It was a cute, fat little book that legitimately listed that many things to be happy about,. Or, I think it did. I never actually counted, and it was not a numbered list.
I used to carry it with me everywhere that I went. When something would make me smile, I’d grab a pen and scribble it down in the margins of that fat little book. Somewhere along the way, I lost that book, and so I thought that I might start a new list.
Alex: Alex is almost always the very first thing that comes to mind when I think of being happy.
Family: Some of mine are hopelessly dysfunctional… but I love my family.
Friends: “Friends are the family that you choose”. Again, some of them are dysfunctional, but if I’m honest, I’m pretty dysfunctional. I’m grateful for both the ones I have the privilege of having near me, and for the ones spread across the country, and even the world. ♥
The cats: Because cats. That’s seriously all the explanation this one needs. My cats are fat, lazy balls of fluff (until 3 in the morning, when they run the Kittyanapolis 500 through the living room) and I wouldn’t have them any other way.
Music. Listen to all the music! All right, maybe not all of it, but there is so much to love about so many different kinds of music. And dance. Even if you’re bad at it, dance.
Books. There are few things in the world better than curling up with a good book and getting lost in a whole different world for a few hours.
The way everything smells after it rains. I wish they’d bottle this so I can have it on demand.
Root beer floats. I love root beer all on its own (and Alex tells me that it’s a little harder to come by where he lives, so that worries me a bit!) but it’s absolutely amazing with a big ol’ scoop of vanilla ice cream!
The internet. Well, duh? Obviously the internet. Firstly, it’s an amazing communications tool, and secondly, cats. All the pictures of all the cats.
Red pandas. I love red pandas second only to cats. Oh, and red pandas can also be found all over the internet.