In the new year, I'd like to work on my writing more. It's something I enjoy, and sometimes I think that other people enjoy it, too. I mentioned on my blog about a month ago that I may not be posting much in the future. I'd like to amend that; I think that I'm going to try to keep writing, but I might not be keeping up with some of the same types of posts that I used to. I will definitely keep advocating for children in poverty, and will definitely keep sharing about my own kids, but I think I need a break from my "regularly scheduled" type posts!
While wasting some time on Pinterest yesterday, I came across some interesting posts about writing challenges. I know that I won't be able to keep up if I promise to write something every day. I have never been successful at those kinds of things. I'm making a "temperature blanket right now, crocheting one row in a different color each day to correspond with the weather. At the end of the year, I'll have a big, beautiful blanket! But we're only one week into the new year and I'm already two days behind! :)
The first assignment in this little challenge was to list ten things that make me really happy! So here they are:
- Laughing with my husband! Whether it's watching a funny movie (or making fun of a really bad one) or playfully picking on each other, Brandon is really good at making me laugh. And I love making him laugh. I feel a little proud of myself when I get him cracking up hard enough that he sounds like he can't breathe!
- Music! I have always loved music! I like to listen to it when I work and when I sleep. I attach memories and feelings to songs and albums. .I love singing in the car and I love when I have someone to sing with me. If I were to look back on a time, searching for a memory of vague happiness, music is always involved. I felt happy going on field trips, sneaking headphones and a splitter to share with my friend. I felt happy catching a ride with classmates after play practices (or even detention....oops) singing along to musical soundtracks. I felt happy as a little kid, making my Barbies "lip sync" a concert or seven. And I'm happy I'm going to a concert tonight! My best friend and I are going to see an orchestral tribute to our favorite artist, and I'm really looking forward to it!
- Dogs! I really love all animals- Brandon and I love visiting the zoo and learning about animals through documentaries and books. But dogs make me so happy. Meeting a new dog is always the best part of visiting someone's house. I follow dozens of dog-related facebook pages and instagram accounts related to dogs, whether they're cute puppies, senior dogs living out their golden years at a rescue farm, or videos of pups just being their sweet, innocent selves (like the one I saw last night of the lab who danced and pranced waiting for a machine to throw a ball for him. God bless.) Even if you are more of a cat person (.........) or don't really care about animals all that much, sometimes seeing a dog being its regular, goofy self can cheer you up.
- Books! Reading books is fun, of course, but even being around them makes me happy! Growing up, just walking into a library or bookstore could relieve my tension and lift my spirits, even if I knew I wasn't coming home with any of the books! There's just something about them that's relaxing and cheerful. Of course, walking into a library or bookstore now also makes me feel like I should be working. I tidy the shelves sometimes without being asked. I can't help it.
- My job! Work actually makes me happy. Now, of course, there are times (or situations or people) that do NOT make me happy. But in general, I'm happy to be at work. Driving over there I have a sense that I could be doing more interesting things with my day, but when I get there, it's all good. My coworkers are the best. I have so much fun at work sometimes, I feel a little guilty. I even come in early at least once a week to have dinner with those coworkers who are working longer days than I am. And it's not just my coworkers, either! I like greeting my favorite patrons and handing out stickers and seeing kids excited about books. I like making recommendations and asking patrons to come back and tell me if something's good.
- Nostalgia! I think a little bit of nostalgia makes everyone feel good sometimes, but it usually makes me feel really warm and fuzzy inside. I get really excited when I remember the name of a forgotten favorite toy or TV show from my childhood. I like watching the same movies and shows over and over (as I'm typing this, I'm listening to the DVD set of Full House I got myself for Christmas!!) I hope that when I'm a mom, my kids will like the things I've saved for them that made me so happy when I was little! It's nice that something that made you feel good when you were 8 can still make you smile 20 years later.
- Feeding people! Playing hostess is fun, but I like feeding people even if they aren't coming to my house. I like to bake and bring stuff to work, or to family gatherings, just to make people happy. There's something sacred about sharing food. I honestly wanted to make something and take it with me last October to Honduras- I figured fudge or cookies would make it safely and would still taste good on the second day, when I'd be visiting the child I sponsor with Manna 4 Lempira. Sadly, there just wasn't enough room in my bags!
- Culture! Well, experiencing other cultures. And meeting people from other countries! I sometimes feel a little awkward because I get excited when I meet someone from another country. I love accents and trying to guess where people are from. I've hung around the pharmacy to talk to the Senegalese pharmacy tech before, or spent extra time helping my Bengali patrons. I like borrowing our "world" music CDs from the library, and trying new food at one of my city's numerous immigrant-owned restaurants. I never minded doing reports on different countries in school because I got to learn about all the customs, costumes, and cuisine!
- Comedy! I know I already said I love to laugh with my husband, but I like laughing by myself and with other people, too. I will pick comedy over other genres almost any time. I save books and articles that make me laugh. I will listen to the same comedy specials over and over because they make me laugh and that's invaluable. I even save funny photos and share them in albums on facebook, because I love laughing and sometimes I need a place to go where I can find one when I'm down. It brings me a lot of joy to know that my friends like these albums, too, and get excited when they see that I've posted in them. Laughing myself sick is something I do on an embarrassingly regular basis. But I think it's good for me.
- Kids! Kids make me happy. I work a few hours a week in a childcare center watching three and four year olds, and it is so much fun. I don't get the opportunity to babysit very often, but I love it. Family gatherings are extra fun when our little cousins are there. Kids are hilarious and fun. We have a lot in common. We love dinosaurs (and dogs!), playing dress up, coloring, arts and crafts, reading storybooks, the works. I can't wait to be a mom and I hope someday I get to be an aunt, too. And I'm thankful that my friends let me love on their kids and send them fun mail and surprises.
Now that I've spent this time sharing things that make me happy, I'd love to know something that makes you happy!