Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Life's Simple Pleasures: The Little Things that Bring Us Happiness

Mara here. So apparently there is no secret to miraculous happiness in life. As amazing as a pill or magic spell would be to suddenly make everything perfect, I've discovered that little things can make me feel, at least for a moment, a little surge of joy. These little things don't solve problems or pay my electric bill or anything like that. But they do remind me that life has moments when it feels magical if I'm simply willing to look for them. 

Little things that bring me happiness:

—Waking up two minutes before my alarm goes off. Waking up ten minutes early makes me wish I’d slept ten minutes more, and waking up one minute early makes me stressed because I have to get to the clock fast before it starts blaring in my ear. But two minutes is perfect.

—When the podcast I'm listening to ends right at the end of my jog. It makes me happy when the two things coincide like that.

—When my total bill at the grocery store comes to a whole dollar amount. Feels very satisfying.

—Ice cold drinking water on a hot day.

—Finding one of my favorite movies on TV.

—That first day I feel better after I’ve had the flu.

—When a package from an online order gets delivered. (After all these years. it still feels magical that I can click a few buttons and have things arrive at my front door!) [Toni note: it's still magical to me, too, Mara.]

—Taking a shower at the end of a long day.

—Seeing a perfectly shaped rose.

—Finding a parking spot right where I need one.

—Walking in the rain.

Little things that bring Toni happiness:

—The sun coming in my bedroom windows.

—Opening the front door when it’s pouring rain to watch and listen.

—Like Mara: Finding one of my favorite movies on TV.

—Eating a banana.

—One of my Psychology Today pieces taking off in cyberspace and I have no idea why or why the number of clicks on it is suddenly soaring.

—The tiny Black Phoebe who flits around my backyard like a hummingbird and has the cutest chirp.

—Seeing one on my bonsai trees sprout a new leaf.

—Finding all the socks I put in the dryer (some clich├ęs are true).

—Eating the elegant dinners my husband cooks for me. (Many of these dinners are more than "simple pleasures"!) 

—Turning over from my nap to find myself face-to-face with my dog who immediately starts licking my face.

—Decaf mocha, no whip.

What are your simple pleasures? We'd love to hear about them; maybe we'll add them to ours!

Walking in the rain


  1. Enjoyed this!
    For me, it's watching the seasons unfold outside my big living-room window...
    A day when I can be on my feet a bit more and tackle a project I've been putting off...
    Yes, finding a favorite movie on TV...
    Listening to podcasts and audiobooks...
    Having the family stop in to visit. I spend a lot of time alone being couch bound/housebound....
    Ice cream, any flavor, any time. ;-)

  2. Oh and the Tour de France every summer!!!

    1. Oh, my husband and I watch the Tour de France every year too! --M

  3. The 3rd day after doing yard work. Then I feel like admiring my work. To the previous comments I too like The Tour de France and all the other pro bicycle races. I was an amateur racer for decades until spinal problems.

    1. Yes--Admiring a job well done is definitely gratifying!! I do that after I've edited videos... (no yard work for me haha--black thumb) My husband loves watching all the cycling races as well! All the big tours and the classics... I mostly just watch the Tour. I'm a big fan of Bob Roll, Phil Ligget and Paul Sherwin! -- M

  4. Sitting quietly and listening to the sounds around me. When the moon is so bright it makes shadows. Collecting fresh eggs.

    1. Ah yes, the moon! I often spend time gazing at the moon. Especially when it's a bit foggy and there's a halo around it. But I'm afriad of chickens no fresh egg collecting for me lol! --M

  5. Decluttering a little at a time, I feel so accomplished! Gaining wisdom from grandchildren's advice. Fixing a simple, healthy meal. Enjoying "California-like" weather (low humidity).

  6. Finding a poem I had forgotten about. "They flee from me, that sometime did me seek..."

    Watching my dog roll around in the sunshine.

    Waking up naturally and not late for anything.

    Hallucinating about Engelbert Humperdinck. (He sang, "After the Lovin'").

    Remembering that I have an affirmation jar.

    Matching color in my wardrobe, including socks and underwear.

    The ticket stubs to Sweeney Todd (the live musical), the first date for my husband and me.

    Friends who know me so well that they can have a saying engraved on a bracelet for me that reminds me of my father.


    1. Ah that's a great list! I want to try an affirmation jar some time. Sweeney Todd is one of my favorite musicals of all time!! --M