Happiness is an Inflatable Play Tent

Okay, stay with me here. The ad for an inflatable bubble-like play tent popped up, and I could immediately see it on my back patio (very small patio) with a mattress inside it, and me inside it, too, with a book watching the rain fall. Of course it would be insufferably hot in the summer and bone-chillingly cold in the winter, so there would probably be three days a year I could use it, if ever, but for the five seconds I thought about reading in there while the rain fell around me, it was heaven. I think it’s time to find a psychiatrist. In the meantime, I’m going to pretend it floats, so I could be reading inside it with cookies and milk as it floated down a nice river. Yes, that could never happen, but it’s a writing rule that knowing it could never happen does not mean you must stop thinking about it. In fact, I think it means you must think about it.

Happiness is no forbidden thoughts.

What made you happy this week?

You know, it was only later I realized there was no way to get into this thing. Maybe you put the kid in first and then blow it up? This idea needs work.

97 thoughts on “Happiness is an Inflatable Play Tent

  1. Fun, me like, there should have a sealable opening. If you want it to float down river, you can use a raft as a base and you can have lights, so the bubbles light up at night, in colours even. I am happy I went to an embroidery workshop yesterday, I didn’t get very far on my work as I need to refresh my knowledge on stitches, but the art and craftsmanship of the work they showed us was beautiful. They had embroidered pictures sewn from Yemen that are works of art and a nice lady who encouraged me to get into silver jewellery making, which was her current passion

  2. Happiness is being out of hospital and on the road to recovery. Happiness is also, in the moment that you’re scared and in pain, knowing that you’re in good hands and everyone around you has got you. Which is something that should not be as rare as it is.

  3. Happiness is whiteboards mounted on the wall. I’m not quite there, yet. I mounted two, then I looked at where I’d mounted them and said, “Oops.” Too low to mount a board under and too high to mount a board over, I’ve dismounted one of the two and I’ll take a do-over.

    1. I hope the remounting goes smoothly.

      After the earlier discussion, I realized I’ve missed out on a small-whiteboard revolution of recent years. Even the local supermarket sells them, although it also has corkboards and half-and-halfs. I could be using one or two whiteboards myself to replace scratch paper in specific applications. I may pick up some dry markers to experiment with, although I have plenty of scratch paper. A manufacturer points out that dry markers can be used on some other unpainted surfaces too, such as disposable plastic party plates or plastic wrap (covering something stiff).

  4. Happiness is packing for a trip to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania tomorrow. Even though it’s the long weekend here in Canada and I’m travelling for a sales pitch, the happiness part is that I get to have dinner with a friend I don’t see very often.

  5. I’m happy I can convey congratulations.

    Lian Tanner just picked up an Aurialis (Australian sf/f/h award) for Best Children’s Fiction, for Spellhounds.  Meanwhile,  Tansy Rainer Roberts, whom we were just discussing, scored in THREE categories! 
    https://file770.com/2023-aurealis-awards

    More later on other stuff, time permitting.

  6. Happiness is scratching things off the list. We took my mother in law to the Pa Fiber Festival yesterday. Neither she nor I do things with yarn, but it was still fun. I wish I did do things with yarn or wool. There was so much beautiful stuff, but if I have one more hobby my head and my house will explode. And there was a bunch of demonstrations going on, which were very fun to watch, including sheep herding, complete with small group of sheep and two dogs.

    And I have an event tomorrow, so I have to pick out good shoes.

      1. Lol. I’m going after work, so I am thinking that I will just wear my Taos Mary Janes. They are cute and practical.

    1. I really enjoy going to the big quilt festival around here, even though I don’t quilt—it’s great to be surrounded by people in their creative element! And textile craft supplies are yummy.

      1. Oh yes. My mother in law is a quilter and we go to shows. Walls and walls of color and texture and pattern… It’s lovely.

  7. Slowly slowing down the hamster wheel of the day job now that I’m on holiday (and only have to finish up some stuff/tasks over the weekend). One of my major projects was organizing a small conference. My happy: when our Vice dean in his closing address thanked me specifically. And not as an addendum but even before thanking the presenters. It’s great to be recognized!
    Nice part: the cheers from the presenters icluding one chipping in with his thanks for the choice of catering ❤️

  8. Happiness is homemade mushroom pot pie. I’ve been wanting a pot pie for some time. I finally found a recipe I wanted to try, and got some puff pastry not filled with unpronounceable chemicals, and made it. It wasn’t perfect, but it still satisfied that need.

  9. During the pandemic when we couldn’t travel, we got a nice little tent and put it in the backyard. I often lay out there on an inflatable mattress, reading and thinking. I could see the sky through the mesh windows and it really did feel like being in a quite different place. If we were stressed, we would say “Tent Time,” and we’d go take half an hour to lie there in the peace and quiet.
    That being said, I want that inflatable play tent so bad. I’ve seen the huge inflatable balls for water use, and couldn’t see a way where I wouldn’t be throwing up from motion sickness. But it would be awesome, down a river.

  10. Happiness is visiting my daughter for two weeks and having her so happy we are here. I’m so grateful that we have such a good relationship.
    Friday happiness was dinner with DH, DS, and three of her friends to celebrate my birthday at an excellent restaurant. I turned 64 and DH says he still loves me and is particularly amused that I now garden . We also found the official when I am 64 video from Yellow Submarine.

    Yesterday happiness was the British library.
    Today it’s drinking tea by the canal after walking through Camden market.
    Then we head to the Tower to watch the end of a boat race.
    And happiness is 11 more days here.

    1. Debbie, Did you mean found the video online? Probably, although I first thought you meant on disc and worried that it might be region coded for Europe and not the US.
      There are workarounds, however.

    2. Happy Birthday! It sounds like your celebration is off to a wonderful start.

    3. Belated happy birthday! I hope you have a wonderful time over in the UK. Have some shortbreads for me, please. And some custard creams for Matcha. 🙂

      1. Balated B’day wishes from me, too, Debbie!
        And have extra fun at the Globe (you plan to see a show, right?). It’s such a great place!!!

  11. Sun and birds, cats sitting next to the open windows watching said birds. No tasks on my plate except putting away a load of laundry when it’s dry, and popping over to feed traveling sister’s cats one more time, so feeling relaxed and summery.

  12. Happiness is checking things off lists.
    Sometimes I put things on the list that I know I’m going to do no matter what, just so I can inspire myself with a check mark.

    I finished preparing the ring around the plumb tree (de-sodding and installing the edging). It just needs soil and seeds/plants.

    Happiness was going to a great teppanyaki restaurant for my nephew’s birthday.

    Happiness was stepping down off one PAC. And standing my ground and saying no to becoming Chair of another society.

    Happiness was having energy this week.

    1. I have to add that I JUST hung a third grow light. I will have seedlings.
      Chuffed is the only word that comes to mind.

  13. Happiness is coming home from buying bug spray (mosquitos are out and are the size of houseflies) to find my dearest and best friend sitting on my porch. She and DH had arranged her visit for my BD. Happiness exploded when we got to my favourite restaurant to discover a large group of my friends waiting for us. It was a wonderful evening. I am so blessed to be surrounded by such great people. My husband has truly outdone himself making 65th BD celebration so memorable.

  14. Happiness for me this week is using a suggestion from here about Trello. I’ve started using it to organize my quilting projects. From “I’ve got the pattern” to “Finished with Photo”, I made different cards to show where I am in each project. It satisfies the tiny corner of my soul that wants to be organized. Especially since I’ve been half-heartedly looking for *something* to keep up with myself! I can’t even remember exactly what quilts I have at the Long-arm quilter! Now, I have a card that says “At Ken’s”.

  15. Happiness is walking with a little black dog who mushes like a sled dog, once she gets going. Did you see the little Border Collie/Papillon mix, Nimble, who won the Agility trial for its size at the Westminster Dog Show? It was like watching black and white lightning.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/westminster-dog-show-agility-competition-mixed-breed-nimble-winner/

    You may have to copy and paste that. Also, the lawn is mowed, new plants are thriving, and I got my unmentionables washed and hung out to dry on the last day of school. Once again, I have avoided entertaining the neighbor boy with my underwear.

  16. Two alternative conjectures: (1) The transparent part is not inflated, but inflating the opaque mattressy part somehow pulls it into the correct shape. Those vertical white lines on the transparent part might be stronger and stiffer than they look and act as ribs. (2) It’s double-walled. Either way, I think the entrance must be on the other side.

  17. Oh thank you so much Jan Kindwoman for that link – Nimble was the most amazing dog and I love that he/she leaped into his owners arms at the end for a hug. Just fabulous.

    I am happy this weekend because I have been tackling things on the too difficult to do pile. I am retiring at the end of the year and having to sort out pensions. Getting an adviser to call tomorrow to help with the tax implications etc and he sent me paperwork to fill out, which was helpful in giving me an insight (it was for his benefit but I benefited from filling it out).

    I also moved my summer clothing out of storage and started the process of putting the winter stuff away – some of it needs laundering first (not such a fun thing but it will get done).

    And I walked to the pharmacy this week and returned the leftover medication from my hospital stay and recovery. It is not terribly far but I figured if I can get there and back and not be bedridden after there is a chance I can book a haircut next week (it has been 10+ weeks and it is driving me nuts). Was tired when I got back but not unbearably sore so looks like I will get my haircut – yay!

    1. Congratulations on your latest milestone. A fresh haircut will really make it feel like a new season.

    2. I hear you. A woman’s hair is important to her, and I hope you feel great when you see the results. I finally have a good hairdresser, and it makes such a difference to my mood and self-esteem.

  18. I realized at some point that what I really like about camping is the blanket-fort aspect of being in the tent with our cozy bedding, some hanging lanterns, and books. We hike, we eat, and the rest of the time we’re reading. It’s so relaxing. Trying to talk the spouse into making enough room in the garage that we can store a teardrop trailer in there and use it as a reading cave.

    The final battle scene in one of my WIPs has people escaping a flooding, underwater dome in a half-dozen inflatable igloos (hello, rebirth symbolism!), so I get more of a danger! danger! vibe from your tent thing at first glance, but floating down a tranquil river in it on a cool day sounds amazing, actually.

  19. Happiness is taking The Canadian train from Toronto to Vancouver, being terrified in the days beforehand, then getting on board and loving every moment of the experience. I’ve been adopted by various members of a tour group, invited to stay in Napa by another lady, discussed books with many people, and the views have been out of this world. I feel very lucky to have had this experience and would recommend it to anyone and everyone.

    Happiness is spending the next week in Vancouver (I’m still on the train and will arrive in Vancouver in the next couple of hours) and feeling more equipped to cope with the weeks of solo travel ahead.

  20. Add one large swimming pool and personal clip on fan and you have a party!🎈
    Happiness is warm days in the sun 🌞

  21. After one last interview at my current organization, in which the job seemed shady, I specifically asked if they were going to pull it and they said not, and then immediately told my caseworker they wanted to pull it, I was all FUCK THIS, I’M OUT, quit my job with one day’s notice, and I am officially no longer employed at my hell employer. I dropped off my stuff and was gifted with a bag of snacks, which was sweet. The announcement email said I’d been on a lot of different teams and thanked me for my service, which was a lot better than the “Jennifer no longer works here” firing treatment I was expecting. Much to my amusement, a coworker friend told me that two other people quit today to go to grad school, albeit I think they are leaving more gradually than I am. I love how they are going to be three people short at a time when budget cuts will probably prevent them from hiring anyone to replace them. I love this for them.

    Other than that, filling out paperwork for the new job, having to go out and buy lunch fixings for eating in an office again. I hope I don’t suck.

    Today is the last day of Twelve Angry Jurors, which has gone well, we’re getting more people and more laughs this weekend and some of my other theater friends have even come to the show! I even got mentioned in one review (because my friend wrote it), so that’s awesome.

    1. Good for you. It must feel wonderful to finally be making the decision instead of waiting on others.

    2. Yay for you! Good luck in your new job. I hope you will find it a much better working atmosphere and start to enjoy life more. Hugs!

  22. Happiness today was watching the sun come up on Lake Michigan from Montrose bird Sanctuary outside Chicago, and then spending many hours spotting and photographing all the warblers! Great great birding! This made me very happy indeed! So happy to have decided to go on this birding trip.

    1. So jealous! I went up to Magee Marsh on Lake Erie a couple of weeks ago but only saw a handful of warblers. Maybe I should try Montrose next year.

      1. We are on our way to Magee marsh tomorrow after a stop at Indiana Dunes National Park which is lovely and has lots of warblers – but you work harder at finding them. Keeping our fingers crossed that the weather will continue to cooperate!

  23. Happiness is friends visiting, lots of hugs, sunny weather, great talks, lots of laughter and good times. And belated birthday-gifts. I got birthday-gifts! And hugs. Did I mention hugs? I got those too! Feeling blessed.
    Happiness is a happily grumpy, pain-free calico demon-kitt. Oh, and not having to force painkiller-drops down her throat, since she apparently doesn’t need it. Very impractical way to administer painkillers for blind people.
    Happiness is another belated birthday-gift arriving with the postman: A box of British sweets and chocolates and goodies from my romance-reading gay-friend. He’d written me a letter in braille: “These sweets cure all anxiety and chase away all ghosts doing spooky things inside your head”. The love. <3
    Happiness is deciding to start using the awesome tea-mug I got as a birthday-gift from a friend two years ago but didn't use because too cute to use, and finding it's the best mug I've ever had. It's big, it drinks great, it keeps the tea warm for ages, and I love the damn thing. Who cares if it gets tea-stains on the inside – that's love-stains! Its days of collecting dust on a shelf are OVER.
    https://x.com/shassmusic/status/1791148035843526685
    Conclusion: HAPPINESS IS FRIENDS*. And cats!

    * There was no other way possible to write it than writing it in caps. Not sorry at all! 🙂

    1. I put denture tablets in my mug overnight every couple weeks and it does a good job on the stains.

      1. If the mug is made of material that will stand it, a tablespoon or more of chlorine bleach in water and left to soak for minutes to hours works well and is probably cheaper (unless you’re soaking dentures at the same time). Plastic, ceramic, and I think glass mugs have all come out undamaged for me. Naturally you don’t want the mug placed anywhere where someone might think the contents are water and drink, but that’s also true of denture solution. (It might require wiping out with a rag to get the last of the stain.)

        1. I remember MIL has tried chlorine/bleach in mugs before without getting rid of the stains, but maybe those were just cheap mugs that couldn’t be saved. That, or maybe they’d been stained for so long the stains had become permanent? Perhaps if I start now that I’ve just started using the mug, it’d be different. Thanks for the tip/reminder.

        2. If it’s ceramic, you can sprinkle in some salt and scrub the tea stains out with a moist scrub-sponge. The salt works both as a mild abrasive and to absorb the colour of the tea-stains, and it’s cheap and readily available in any kitchen.
          This works well even on old and well-set stains; you can do this once per season and have your mug looking pristine again.

          If you don’t want to use a scrub sponge on glass or other surfaces that might scratch, you can use 1/2 or 1/4 of a denture-cleaning tablet instead, and let it soak for an hour or so. In that case, I’d not let the stains deepen and set for months before treating them, but do so maybe once a week or once a month if the stains aren’t too bad.
          Both salt and denture-cleaning tablets are mouth-safe (better than chlorine, and doesn’t smell awful), but still rinse it out well after cleaning.

  24. Last time I was out getting cat maintenance supplies, the big-box pet store had a really cute pet pool on display. Shallow vinyl pop-up you can fill with water, and it even has a built-in canopy so one’s critter does not get sunburned.

    Happy this week: painless & productive 37.5 hours of Day Job; 3 hours productive yardkeeping yesterday; wrote a flash fic for a promotion that’s coming up next month in the Small But Mighty MM Romance group on FB; as of Tuesday was up over 10K on the novelette-in-progress (why is my happiness so tied to productivity?); and have caught up with all the episodes of The Ready Room.

    Am not fully happy that Star Trek: Discovery is nearly done, but *cannot wait* for the Section 31 movie.

  25. I’m having a wonderful time in Ireland. We spent the first day at Huntingbrook Gardens, just outside Dublin, and were welcomed by the owner, Jimi Blake. There were hardly any other visitors (no idea why – it’s an amazing place), and we explored it thoroughly and enjoyed talking to Jimi. https://www.instagram.com/p/C7E5OLxMH8N/?img_index=1

    Then today, which was my birthday, we went exploring the seashore, woods & a stone circle in West Cork, and then my friend bought me an evening meal which we ate sitting outside looking across an inlet: it felt positively Mediterranean. (Also posted on Instagram, but I don’t want to risk two links.)

    1. Happiest of happy belated birthday wishes! It sounds like your time away is doing you good. Happy for you!

  26. Playing with fabric makes me happy, and the projects I’ve been working on this week are a double happy, because they’re for the next Romancing the Vote auction (promotion in June, actual auction the first week of July), which is itself a lot of fun and makes me happy. I’ve now got a stack of close to two dozen “cat doilies” (cat-sized quilts, can be used as the anti-fur equivalent of antimacassars or as a table centerpiece or small wallhanging), done except for the binding, which I’ll spend the upcoming long weekend adding. No pic of them yet, so here’s one of my cat Rosie helping me to baste two of them I’m working on the one in the foreground, and she’s sitting on the one that’s still attached to the same backing fabric and batting that I’m using for the second): https://www.instagram.com/p/C7DR7GvogjS/

    Also brownies. Just not at the same time that I’m playing with fabric. It’s enough that a couple of the quiltlets have blood stains on them (which I’m hoping will wash out) from stabbing myself with the basting pins.

  27. Happiness is hearing how happy my twins are now that they are once again living close enough to one another that they can visit on weekends.

  28. I got all of my planting done. Now it’s just trimming some hedges and maintenance-weeding, mowing, and watering.

    And no medical appointments, only one meeting and a cocktail fund raiser this week. A nice slow week. And very little rain in the forecast!

  29. Happiness is knowing that when I end this shift on Monday morning at 730 am & I don’t work again until Saturday night at 9pm!!! I love PTO – paid without having to work – yeah – 5 whole days to do whatever I want – yeah!!!

    Happiness is the usual roof over my head, food in the fridge, gas in the car, bills paid.

    Happiness is connections with people & Cooper dog.

    This week in Florida happiness has been fans, ceiling fans & air conditioners!

    So many happys…

    Oh and in Florida ya don’t wanna be rolling down the river in a plastic bubble that alligators can see & bite through. You’d be like one of those dishes floating in a trough at Sushi bars.

  30. They sell tents that are made to float on water, maybe you’d like one of those. You can also get a hammock tent if you have a place to string it up. Tents are awesome. Backyard campouts are also awesome. Let your camping flag fly!

  31. It’s not a floating bubble but I love my hammock swing. The weather has finally cooperated (sorry Deb, it figures we’d have gorgeous weather while you’re away). I have been working on my flower beds and in between work sessions, I sit in the swing with a beverage, a book, and my iPad in case I want to browse anything. And…the mosquitos aren’t fully active yet!

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