Happiness... what an underrated thing you are. I got a chain email about the ten things that make you happy, blah, blah, I hate chain emails! But the more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea, so of course my over-thinking self had to come up with my very specific ten things that make me happy... so here they are:
1. My family
God bless them, I love them to pieces. They drive me bananas sometimes, but I love them more than any person has a right to love anything. I was raised to believe that family always comes first, and that's the way my parents have always treated our family. We argue like any other family, we are perfectly imperfect, but when all is said and done they are my heart, and I am happiest when I am near them. P.S. I'm an identical twin and the biggest daddy's girl you'll ever meet. Yes, I know I am twenty-three, but you are never too old to be daddy's little girl :)
I know, I know. A bit ridiculous. But I LOVE shoes, and shoes make me happy. Really, really, happy. I own more pairs than I am willing to admit, and half of them I rarely wear, but there's something about a pretty pair of shoes that just draws me in. My favorite are ridiculously high heels. There is little about my life that is glamorous or sexy, but put me in a pair of 5 inch heels, and there you have it... instant glamour! I love boots too... and cute flats... and my favorite rainbow thick strap brown flip flops. Shoes just make me happy.
Coffee = love. There are few things I love more than a nice hot cup of black coffee. (I know, black coffee? Who does that? Me! In several ways, I am the kindred spirit of an old man) I'm picky about my coffee.... as I am with most everything in my life. I only drink it black, and I hate Starbucks coffee. They brew it super strong so that once they add in all the syrup and milk, it still carries a mild coffee flavor, but for someone that doesn't take their coffee with any of the junk in it, it's awful! I once saw a quote that said "The answers to most of life's problems can be found at the bottom of a coffee cup." I couldn't agree more.
4. Common Sense
I know, this is a weird one, but people with common sense make me happy. I am deeply bothered by people who are utterly lacking in the common sense department, and it's quite refreshing to talk with someone with a brain in their head... most of whom are children, who haven't yet been jaded or taught how to think by a corrupt world. Please don't mistake this to mean I dislike the whimsical, the fantastical, and the fun. Trust me, I'm all about fun. (I work with children all day, there's no way not to have fun with that one!) I grew up in a small town, I was raised with common sense, principles, and a moral compass. It's hard for me to comprehend people who lack these things.
I teach K4, and I love it. My kids make me happy. They are so full of joy, it's infectious.... You can't help but catch it. One of my favorite quotes is from a Jodi Piccoult book: "I have never understood how children know you better than you know yourself, how they can touch you when you need it most or offer a distraction when the last thing you want to do is focus on your problems." -Jodi Piccoult; Keeping Faith I can completely identify with this quote. They make any bad day better with hugs and giggles. They can be a handful at times, but the joy they give me everyday is worth it. Several times over.
6. Good music
I am a music lover. I don't profess to be a music expert or to have an incredible voice, or even to have great taste in music. I just like what I like, and I love listening to it in the car. My whole commute is filled with shuffles through my ipod, searching for the perfect song for the mood I'm in. I also have music addictions. For a while it was Party in the USA... talk about embarrassing! But now I'm stuck on John Mayer's Battle Studies... I'm not sure when I'll get over it, but for now I'm absolutely loving it!
7. Phone calls from a certain someone
While I'm not one to publicize relationships (I don't even like to put things on facebook, etc.), I have to say, those phone calls make me super happy. And that's all I'm going to say about that :)
8. Being creative
I love creating things. I'm crafty. I like to sew. I'm addicted to projects, and I'm constantly trying to fill my time with productive things (This is a somewhat recent development... the productivity part) I love love LOVE this quote: "Determine never to be idle. No person will have occasion to complain of the want of time, who never loses any. It is wonderful how much may be done, if we are always doing." -Thomas Jefferson I'm striving to make this the motto of my life, and I have found it to be true and fulfilling.
9. Doing good
I really just want to be a good person, and trying to be that way makes me happy. I know I'm not perfect, and please don't take that to mean I don't think I have flaws and faults, because I know I'm completely imperfect. It's not always the huge projects, but even just the little favors you do for people... It's striving to put others before yourself, and while I'm not always so good at this, it's something I'm working on. I've lumped philanthropic efforts in with this... Breast Cancer Education and Awareness is a cause that is very near and dear to my heart, and doing things to benefit this cause make me happy. What a filling thing purpose is.
10. Black and White pictures
There is something about black and white pictures that just make my soul smile. I LOVE them! They are so simple, classy, and elegant... the perfect combination. If I ever have a child, I'm filling every album I can get my hands on with black and white pictures of his or her imperfect perfection. Everything looks better in black and white... everything.
So, picking ten was incredibly hard, because there are so many things that make me happy... like quotes and history and politics and reading and my pajamas and lemons and hot showers and light and sunrises and love. Too many things to choose from... what a lovely problem to have!