Thursday, March 20, 2014

Thursday Thirteen

The United Nations has declared today International Happiness Day. Happiness is a fundamental human pursuit, the pundits say.

I'm not sure everyone defines happiness the same way. For some people it might be lack of stress. For others it's a euphoria. For me, it's contentment, I suppose, which generally happens in a state of mindfulness of the present.

Anyway, I thought I'd list 13 things that make me feel what I consider to be my personal "happy."

My sweetie, who was
not pleased at having
his photo taken.
1. Spending time with my husband. He's a busy guy what with being a Battalion Chief in the fire department, running a farm, and installing septic tanks. I value our time together.

2. Writing. Nothing sets me on fire like good research, interviews, and writing up a story that I feel invested in.

3. Reading. Good books carry me to other worlds, introduce me to different people, and give me things to think about.

4. Exercising. I think exercise of some sort is important for happiness, though the actual doing of it may not make me happy. However, I practice tai chi and find that to be extremely comforting. It destresses, lowers my blood pressure, and brings me into the moment.
This bike is for sale. I bought a new one.

5. Time with friends. I enjoy getting out and being with people occasionally. Being introverted, I do quite well at home alone, but sometimes I want to bounce ideas off another, or just enjoy someone else's thoughts for a change.

6. Working. I do not do well with idle time, so I prefer to be doing something. I am thinking of taking up knitting in the very near future. I used to knit when I was a child but I have forgotten how. I am hoping it will come back to me.

7. I love listening to music. I like female singers like Melissa Etheridge, Sheryl Crow (her earlier work more so than what she produces now), Adele, Pink, Stevie Nicks, Pat Benetar, and yes, even Celine Dion. I grew up on country music (Loretta Lynn) but switched over to pop when I was 12, and never looked back. Hearing these songs makes my spirit soar.
CountryDew rockin' out
in her younger days.

8. Playing music. I play guitar and I enjoy sitting down and strumming a tune now and then. Sometimes it is the best way to force out the blues - sing them out with all your heart. "I could just sit around makin' music all day long. As long as I'm makin' music, I know I can't do nobody wrong." Anybody remember that one?

9. Walking through the woods and on the farm. We have a lovely place, and especially this time of year, before the snakes are out, it's a joy to stroll the woods and look for anemones, may flowers, and other pretties that you won't find at any other time.
Irises from last year. They aren't up
here yet.

Haytime in 2011.
10. Taking photos. I enjoy recording our life here on the farm and posting pretty pictures. Which leads me to ...

11. Blogging. Yes, this activity does bring me a little joy. It is a good outlet for me and I've made some nice friends through it.

12. Watching the deer and the cows. I have no pets because I am so allergic to them, but I do enjoy the view out the window. On any given day I might see deer, bunnies, squirrels, various birds, a skunk, a fox, a coyote, or even a bear! It makes me feel peaceful to watch them.
Out the window last summer.

13. Making a difference. Through my work with the newspaper, I have enlightened thousands of people about the world around them. I have contributed to the community by offering suggestions, putting folks together so they can help one another, raising money, etc. I used to volunteer with a historic preservation group and I found that very satisfying. I also served on my local library board and I found that extremely gratifying. I think it is important to be a part of your community.

 Thursday Thirteen is played by lots of people; there is a list here. I've been playing for a while and this is my 336th time to do a list of 13 on a Thursday.  


  1. a beautiful, meaningful list

  2. Great list. What wonderful things to be happy about and kudos on 336 Thursday Thirteen posts. I know your posts bring me joy. Thanks.

  3. I'm with you on the writing, though I don't think of it as something that makes me happy. It's more just something I'm compelled to do.

  4. I'm pretty much on board with most of these. I wish I could say working still makes me happy, but...

  5. solid. happy spring, happy Persian New Years. and we have a lot of overlaps there.

  6. I would love to see Deer outside my window. What a happy post.

  7. I agree with about 10 of your 13 (don't like exercise and don't play music). I would have to add watching children with imaginations play and dancing to make 13.

  8. A feel good list! I can agree with you about contentment being an important part of happiness. I've had it and I've been without it, and yes, having it does mean happiness. I enjoyed reading your thirteen. This week I missed out.

  9. This is a great list, and I think we're very similar in our outlook. Except I enjoy exercising. I'm sure the knitting will come back to you quickly. :)

  10. Nos. 2 and 4 - good for you. I'm more like "if God had wanted me to bend over, He would have put diamonds on the floor" type when it comes to exercise. Nice list.


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