Barbara Streisand and Maria from the Sound of Music sing about raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens as a few of their favorite things. While my husband, family and friends rank as my favorite people in my life, there are some things that bring smiles to my face and warmth to my heart. As we kick off the season that celebrates blessings and gratefulness, I thought I’d share a few of my favorite things in life (in no particular order):
1. I could get lost in time and thought wandering through a bookstore or library. One of my favorite pastimes is reading. It distracts me, soothes me and brings me enjoyment. I mostly indulge in fiction works because I love using my imagination to be transported to another place and time.
2. Being outdoors on a warm, sunny day. I love a soft breeze of fresh air, hearing the leaves rustle and feeling the sun’s warmth as I sit on the deck or walk through the neighborhood.
3. I may not be able to ride horses anymore but cancer can’t diminish the joy and peace these animals still bring to me. Their graceful, yet powerful movements make me pause to watch and the warmth and softness of pressing my cheek to a horse’s neck instantly soothes my soul.
4. Phone calls and in person visits with friends. Texts and social media messages have taken away from these precious bonding activities, which lately leaves me feeling sad and detached from some friends. I truly enjoy and love connecting with friends, even if only for a few minutes to say hello and thinking of you.
5. Seeing the world through the eyes of innocent children makes me smile and marvel at how our thinking and imagination changes as we age. Children ask the best questions and tell great stories. They also love unconditionally. These moments take me to a less stressful time in life.
6. I love exploring the world and finding new adventures with my husband. He’s always game to try new activities and visit new places, which certainly makes life pretty fun as we create new memories.
7. Zumba and other activities to get my body moving and feeling strong. I love my regular Zumba class – the music and instructor give me energy, confidence in my body (despite the titanium rod in my leg), and generally put me in a great mood by the end of the class. I’m blessed to have a strong, healthy body after a terrible illness so am always satisfied when pushing myself physically.
8. Warm, soft slippers make my feet feel great and relieve pressure on my knee.
9. Bright flowers bring cheer to any room. Sunflowers and daisies are my favorite.
10. Laughter – the kind that makes your stomach hurt and tears fall down your face. We don’t laugh enough in this society. I think our problems would be less if we laughed more.
11. Road trips bring the promise of adventure and new experiences.
12. Making something with my hands. Whether working on projects for my new Etsy store, Be Happy Designs, or planting flowers in the garden, nothing brings easy happiness and satisfaction than seeing a project finished that I did with my hands.
13. A hot bubble bath. Granted, this might be on my mind since the cold temps are hitting our Michigan home!
14. Music is so powerful and can mirror our emotions with the various lyrics and sounds. I couldn’t imagine a world without music.
15. Feeling love. Sounds cheesy but it’s so true. Whether it’s the goofy smile I find on my face after a sweet text from my husband, the feeling of my nephew’s arms around me in a hug, hearing “I love you” from my mom as we end our phone call or the knowledge that I’m important to someone else, nothing can match that warm, happy feeling that love provides. I’m grateful every day for the people in my life who love me, despite my many faults. I hope everyone feels that love in their lives too.
What brings smiles to your face?