Your Moment of Happiness

I was sitting in bed the other afternoon reading a good book, and I looked up because a cloud moved away from the sun, and the light poured through the trees outside my window and through my window, and Veronica sighed in the warmth and snuggled into my pink-flowered quilt, and I thought, “Right now, in this moment, I am happy.” It’s a mantra for me now; the rowboat of my life is currently besieged on so many sides by so many alligators, my country is beseiged on many sides by so many alligators, it’s too easy to get caught up in feeling helpless. But my life is also made up of many small things that add up to a good existence, and as long as I take the time to notice them, consciously, I won’t forget that overall, I have a very good life, a life worth noticing in its detail, a life worth defending from alligators. It’s a little Marie Kondo, a kind of thanking that aspect of your life for its service–I’m thankful I have a bedroom with windows on treetops so it’s like sleeping in a treehouse, I’m thankful I have a great mattress and squooshy pillows and blankets and a pink flowered quilt, I’m thankful I have a good book to read, I’m thankful I have three snoozing dogs who make me laugh, I’m thankful I have a daughter who writes me e-mails about Bloom County and a Krissie who writes me e-mails about rewriting being a pain in the ass, I’m thankful that my car Agnes did not run her battery down even though I accidentally left the ceiling light on–but mostly, right now, in this moment, I am happy.

How were you happy in the moment this week?

36 thoughts on “Your Moment of Happiness

  1. We have had some beautiful, beautiful fall days lately where the sky is clear and knock you out blue, most of the leaves have changed and it feels nice to have just a sweatshirt or light jacket and all I have to do is walk outside and it’s like “bam!” The colors are so bright and crisp after a long muggy summer and I think for the millionth time “I love October.”

  2. I was happy because so many people showed their trust in me recently. I requested support for a teen I know who entered a singing competition and people who don’t even know him voted. This followed on after I checked to see if I’d paid for a talk to be saved to my memory stick and the admin lady was, “You always pay for everything.” This said without even checking the receipt book. It’s humbling. Makes me glad that my word is good. And that my sometimes rigid (to me) adherence to the truth is bearing fruit of trust.

  3. I’m still getting bouquets from the garden despite the cool weather. I’ve harvested beets and carrots, garlic and pole beans. Hmmm, and my kitchen Reno is complete. It is an utter joy to cook in.

  4. Thanks for writing this! Really helpful to read it right now. Like many people, I’ve had a year of being lost in bat country, with frequent alligator incursions. And I’m trying to get back to more in-the-moment noticing of what’s nice, rather than focusing on all the scary things that I can’t change. They’ll still be there whether I focus on them or not, so it’s better to shift my focus.

    This week I had some perfect walks in perfect weather with leaves falling. Some of them with my husband while we chattered about this and that. I had purring cat snuggles. Hot showers that feel great because it’s getting colder outside. And lots of videos of narrowboats putt-putting down canals. An unexpected two minute rainstorm got me to look up the weather forecast and find a service called Minutecast, which made me laugh. Minute by minute weather predictions. It had my rainstorm on a timer clock and it was accurate!

    Jenny, I think you wrote something on the blog once about life planning being prudent, but not letting the future eat the present, because that’s nothing but awful. So true.

  5. I have a semi-rocky relationship with my sister. I think because I’m the oldest and she has always wanted to be top dog. I want to sometimes say “get over it’ per Chief of Staff and wait till I’m dead. I spoke with her yesterday. Anyway I had told her recently that I saw the house we grew up in online and viewed the pictures and asked if she saw it. She did. And that’s when we had a real sister conversation about growing up in the fifties and sixties, the changes made to our home (dishwasher) still the same knotty pine walls, a bedroom made in the basement. Oh, for any of us to have our own room. Finally a breakthrough. That’s what made me happy. Even if only temporary.

    1. Don’t knock the temporary; if you pile up enough of them they add up to the New Normal.

  6. One of my closest friends and her family came to town to stay with us for a few days, which has been lovely. The fall colours are stunning and I’ve been taking advantage of the sunshine to be outside. We met our new puppy today – an Australian lab/doodle mix. Even DH, who is less keen on getting a dog, was charmed by her sweetness and personality. Dogs, especially fluffy puppies, make me happy but Watching 18 yo DS cuddle her was extra.

  7. Standing at my back door, an early morning light spotlightin the colors on the wooded hill just up from me. It seemed as if every leaf was outlined in light itself, glowing. The sky was blue, I had a cup of hot coffee in hand, and it was just paradise.

  8. I’m happy for that picture of Veronica! And also for friends. I spent the weekend with two dear friends (and we had a drop-in from a third friend and her recently-adopted little boy). It was such a lovely, fortifying couple of days. The good feelings will help me as I head into some big, difficult changes over the next couple of months.

  9. I am a curmudgeon…a happy curmudgeon. I can bah-humbug with the best while maintaining the spirit of Christmas in my heart all the year long. That said, I’d really like to enjoy October 23rd: “Slap Your Annoying Coworker Day.”

    In the meantime, it’s the first day of Early Christmas Shopping Fortnight(s). I have extra cash, a shopping partner, and a car. The Christmas tree is plugged in (and has been all year, so nothing different there). Ho, Ho, Ho!

  10. I love your bedroom with the pink colors, the dogs on the bed, and the view out the windows. I had a bedroom once, many years ago, that gave me the feeling of being in a treehouse and I loved it.

    Although today isn’t the sunny, cool but nice day the weather people originally promised us, I am happy that I have one more day of vacation left and it is supposed to be sunny and mild. I fully intend to make the most of it, going hiking somewhere, letting the cats out in the backyard for a while, reading a good book, the possibilities are endless at this point. For today though, the laundry is almost done, there is a pot of split pea soup cooking on the stove, and I am experimenting with drying herbs in a dehydrator. None of these are “happy provoking” per se but they do give me a feeling of accomplishment.

  11. Happiness for me right now is discovering that I have a family of baby bandicoots in my front garden. This is one of the reasons (the other is sheer laziness) I keep it so overgrown, so they’ll have shelter from the neighbourhood cats. The bandicoots are amazingly fast, but so are a couple of the cats, so I also keep a small pile of stones on my front doorstep, for throwing at intruders. I’m a dreadful shot, but every now and again I manage to accidentally hit a cat, so they become more wary.

    Watching those babies dart back and forth from one clump of shelter to the next is gorgeous.

  12. I went to an opening at a local gallery a few weeks ago. I fell in love with 2 water colors. I was at the gallery again yesterday for a reception and they are still available. The question has always been, “Can I afford them?”
    The artist was again there and he does prints. YES!
    I now have an option. The originals or prints framed at the gallery so, at least, I am supporting both.
    The decision to aquire the images has been made. When I don’t stop thinking about something for 3-4 weeks and, in this case, know where I’d hang them, I just have to get them.

  13. I have been reading posts on social media lately from people who are struggling financially, or with poor health, or intolerance and prejudice. While it is depressing and makes me feel both ragingly angry and helpless to change anything, it has made me realize just how fortunate I am. Instead of dwelling on the things I don’t have, I notice the comforts and blessings I do have. It is a good antidote to the fear and anger bombarding us from all sides. While I am not grateful for the bad things, I am grateful that I have finally, after all these years, learned to enjoy the little things.

    Also, corgi sploots are a guarantee of giggles.

  14. A friend just adopted two puppies for her retirement, so I’m adopting her happiness with them.

    Also, I made a donation to a local-ish cat foster/TNR person who’s the only one doing TNR in my county as far as I can tell. I’ve TNRed cats in my yard, but don’t have the ability (financial or physical) to do it more broadly than that, so I’m happy that someone else is, and that I can make a small but meaningful contribution to her work.

    I also had a bittersweet happy to learn that a woman who, years ago, represented me in a legal kerfuffle had passed recently. I wasn’t happen about that obviously, but it reminded me that she was the inspiration for me to knit chemo caps (her requested fee was a chemo cap, since she’d just recently completed chemotherapy herself), so she was indirectly responsible for all the heads I’ve helped to keep warm in the last twenty years. I can honor her memory by continuing to knit and donate them.

  15. I have so much happiness going on. Right now I’m in Michigan and I am reveling in every single autumn color.
    I feel so blessed to see autumn. it’s not the same in Los Angeles. And I’m snuggling with my eight-year-old granddaughter and seeing my son’s new house for the first time.
    Yesterday I was in New York. I was there for three nights and I saw Tootsie and I saw Beetlejuice. I reconnected with old friends, attended a beautiful memorial service in the firemen’s garden my cousins established on East eighth street. there are now three bricks laid in the circle with their names on them. My cousin James lives in North Carolina designed the bricks and put their ashes inside – some of their ashes. the rest were scattered. It was great catching up and telling stories. Old friends from the neighborhood gathered to honor Ansley. And I heard new stories.

  16. I’m happy for cat snuggles & purrs, a warm home, a sunny day that was soooo much nicer than this past week of cold and dreary, and for a darling man who’s my hubby. I also have freshly baked bread, lamb, and butternut squash soup for dinner with a glass of wine. I’m super fortunate to have such tasty food available.

  17. My moment was that I got a job! A contract tech writing job, with what is for me a magnificent salary. As in, more than twice what I’ve ever made. So, I’m trying to process that after years of just hanging in and going backwards. Huh. It comes with a commute, but lots of it can be done from home. So that’s good. Also, fall in New England, which can’t be beat, lunch with friends, a concert, and a fund raiser for a local charity where I realized that I knew maybe half the people. For a kid who moved so many times, this is a big deal. And a cat, who had decided it’s time to hang out with me overnight, which I enjoy.

    1. Woo Hoo! Let’s hear it for gainful employment and a warm cuddle! I also can appreciate the relief of knowing you aren’t the only stranger in the room. When I was first getting to know my friend Nick, he would sometimes invite me to accompany him to an open house or after concert reception. I would only accept if he could tell me the names of at least 3 people I had met before so that I could make it through the first half hour or so. Since many of these concerts were given by the choir Nick sang in, it didn’t take me long to feel comfortable with the whole choir. And all those after concert coffee hours were great practice for when I moved to Chicago and really didn’t know anybody.

  18. I convinced my husband to visit a jack-o-lantern display at a local park. We enjoyed the flickering lights, shrieking kids and hundreds of cleverly carved pumpkins. And we were home by 8 p.m.

  19. I got home from a reader/writer con today. I had fun there and maybe connected with some new readers. Definitely caught up with a few people who enjoy my work, which is always encouraging. But the best part was getting home and having a nap with the dogs today. They were so happy to see me, and I was happy to be home.

    The lead up to the con was a bit busy, so I had a lot of catching up to do here today!

  20. I spent the day up at the Getty Villa at a symposium on Herculaneum, which is doubly my happy place. Got to raid their gift shop and snag the last of a couple of Very Interesting Books, as well as snag myself a couple of bronze votive feet and a votive hand, which are just neato. Soaked up a nice sampling of current research, names of academics to ping with questions, and might have made a new friend in the process. Cherry on top was that I was able to drive myself to and fro and can still feel both feet and both hands. Happiness is!

  21. What a lovely post!

    I am thankful that packup from show A and set up of show B both went more smoothly than they might have done. I am thankful to have had dinner with my darling niece, and then finish the last of the set up, and still have the energy to come read everyone else’s happies.

  22. I flunked a 6 week mindfulness course a decade ago. The teacher stated at the beginning of class it would transform us. Yeah…well…that nailed that coffin shut. I read The happiness Project. No, just no. I try to be grateful though. And I try to say thank you with 60 breaths every night, (although to who or what, I don’t know).

    I’m thankful for indoor plumbing, HVAC, vaccines, books, friends,families and dogs. This site makes me…happy?

  23. It has been an Interesting Week. On the good side: costume shopping, party, Renaissance Faire. The friend I took to the faire told me she is having a crisis and had a nervous breakdown in the car on the way over, but faire seemed to help today.

    Crush news: we had karaoke drama this week when a barfly got very wasted and did a sexual harassment free for all on me, friends and acquaintances. Crush guy and I attempted to communicate to the barfly that humping folks is not great, which went about as you’d expect, but when we got home we texted for like an hour about the whole thing. Though last I heard the DJ may want to quit karaoke if the bar doesn’t ban this guy (barfly also went after the DJ’s mom) so I don’t know what is going to happen there.

    The next day, crush’s grandmother died and I ended up talking to him after rehearsal about it. Then he gave me a long hug after and uh….I kissed him on the chest (about where my mouth hits on him, I’m short). I seriously am so mortified and don’t know how the hell that happened. I am now the skeezebucket who came onto a guy who clearly isn’t ready for a relationship, after his grandmother died.

    He seems fine, mind you, or at least still talked to me the next night at rehearsal, wanted to hug. But still.

    It was a weird week.

    1. Oh, hugs for you. That sounds so awkward.

      But good on the costume and Faire fronts!

    2. Someone who kisses their crush on the chest at head height in the middle of a my-grandmother-died hug is NOT a skeezebucket. You comforted him, that’s all, like kissing a child on the top of their head. It was appropriate. Skeezebucket would have dived for his mouth and sucked like a leech, and crush definitely wouldn’t have wanted to hug skeezebucket again the next night. Don’t be so hard on yourself.

  24. Just reading these on Monday, and that’s making me happy.

    Yesterday, we had drenching rain first thing in the morning, followed by mist / drizzle the rest of the day. I was quite happy to be inside for most of the day. When Stanley the semi-outdoor cat begged to go out, I opened the door. He put one paw out, took a sniff, saw the rain and backed back in – a definitely Nope for him! Other than that, it was a quiet, calm day, with time for craftiness and just lazing about.

  25. I’m happy that my baseball team is headed to the World Series. Everything is possible before the games begin. I want their movie of a season to have a happy ending, but they’ve already gone further than anyone expected.

    This weekend was the first that I could spend mostly at home in a really long time. I baked bread, made applesauce and yogurt, and cooked real food for dinner. Blissful.

    Also, I am settling in well at the new job. There are some thorns of course, including a difficult employee. (One of my other coworkers described us as a garden of misfit toys, which is fairly accurate. The goal is to make all the misfitness work together.)

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