When the headlines mention the failure of our economy every single day, it’s certainly hard to stay positive. Layoffs, foreclosures, heightened crime, declining stocks… these are things we don’t want our children or grandchildren to believe are a normal part of life.
For the past couple of years, Jeremy and I have been focused on what “more” do we need to be happy. More house. More yard. More bathrooms. More community. More savings. More kids (ha ha ha – this one has been put on the back burner indefinitely!) More, more, more! But in these lean times, we now focus on what “less” do we need? What can we do without? Less new clothes. Less eating out. Less extracurriculars. Less brand names. Less, less, less.
As the reality of our current economy has set in, we have been forced to find more joy in what we have. We have jobs (for now). We have a home that is cozy and warm. We have food on our table every night (even though our kids won’t eat it). And most important of all is that we have amazing family and friends.
I started this blog with the thought of finding good in every day. It gets hard sometimes. I try to focus so much on the grand “good.” But there are so many little “goods” that I often look past. So in the spirit of the Facebook phenomenon “25 Random Things About Me…” I decided to write 25 things that make me happy (big or small). It is mostly a list of what I am thankful for, but what could you be thankful for that doesn’t make you happy? Nothing, right? So this is my list of happy things.
1. Jeremy – he is my rock. I love laughing with him every night.
2. Mason and Cooper. No matter the stress they put on us, I love their hugs, kisses, and smiles.
3. My family – from MD to VA to WV to NC. I am thankful that we all enjoy each other’s company and make a point to see each other as often as we do.
4. Our home – it’s small, but cozy. Heck we once had 13 people eat Thanksgiving dinner in our upstairs room, which is now the master bedroom. My favorite place in our house, though, is the dining room (when the table is not covered in clutter!)
5. Chocolate. I don’t go a day without eating any.
6. New England – if I had the guts to deal with the winters, I’d easily move there. But since I don’t, memories and plans for summers in Maine will have to do.
7. My sister – I love talking to and hanging out with her. (If only it were more often!)
8. Real Simple Magazine.
9. Chic flicks – they always put a smile on my face (usually after the crying – “It’s a happy cry!”)
10. Musicals – who isn’t happy while singing along to your favorite musical?
11. Chocolate – oh wait, I already mentioned that, didn’t I? Ok then – chocolate chip cookies. Ha!
12. Foot rubs or having someone else brush my hair. They are both so relaxing.
13. Fall – my favorite season.
14. My mom – she always lends an ear on the not-so-happy days.
15. New table linens, towels, pillows or sheets – an easy way to change the look in a room.
16. Getting a letter or card in the mail.
17. Gerbera daisies and hydrangeas.
18. Leaded glass windows – they help add the coziness to our home.
19. HD HGTV (This is a luxury that I’m most likely going to be giving up soon, so I’ll enjoy it while it lasts.)
20. Walking to the park and the grocery store with my family, especially now that we have new sidewalks!
21. Getting a hug from Jeremy – he gives great hugs!
22. Baking for others (and getting a few snitches for myself.)
23. Chocolate….. ha ha ha Seriously, though – brownies with mint ice cream. I think there seems to be a pattern here. All things in moderation, right?
24. Freshly cut grass – now that we have a nearly finished front yard (curb appeal, baby!), I love coming home after the grass has been cut and just enjoying the beauty of it all.
25. And finally, (you’re expecting me to say chocolate, aren’t you?)…..
Watching my kids grow up.