More enjoyable

Cameron + Whitney + Momba + Matt = INSTANT PARTY! Fairfield, California, August 2003

Cameron + Whitney + Momba + Matt = INSTANT PARTY! (Momba + anyone = instant party)
Fairfield, California, August 2003

“You seldom come across anything more enjoyable than a happy person.”
Frank A. Clark

When I told Jeff I wanted to use this quote in a post, I asked him if he could think of any photos that would go with it.  He immediately responded, “Have you got one of Momba?”

“Yes, I have a whole bunch of photos of Momba — and actually, I have been intending to feature one of her for a long time.”  Well, that was easy!

“Momba” is the affectionate nickname the kids at our church in California called our friend Mary Ann.  Those who read the blog comments regularly have seen her sunny, generous and supportive contributions here often.  You may recall that she is the one who explained to me what a “street machine” is.  Yes, this grandmother is a biker — no wonder she enjoys life!

But Mary Ann is so much more. She’s a woman of great faith who always finds the positive side of any situation.  It’s no wonder Jeff thought of her first when I read the quote about “happy,” even though we have not seen her in nearly ten years!

I’m sure there are people you know who come to mind when you read this quote.  Chances are, you may be smiling just thinking about them.  See how much a happy person blesses the world?

I wish I could claim to be such a person, but I’m afraid “happy” is not the first word that comes to people’s minds when they think of me.  Still, I appreciate happiness in others, and I try to imitate them.  I want to smile as much as I am able, particularly when I see someone who obviously needs to see a smiling face.

As with other virtues, happiness is really more a decision than an emotion.  It’s almost like a habit, one I want to cultivate.  One of the best ways to do it is to surround myself with people who understand that life is a blessing, and joy is there for the taking if we know how to find it. I’m grateful to know people like Mary Ann, and I wish you many such people in your life!

One year ago today:

A light from within

This post was first published seven years ago today. The original post, comments and photo are linked, along with two other related posts, below. These links to related posts, and their thumbnail photos, do not appear in the blog feed; they are only visible when viewing the individual posts by clicking on each one. I have no idea why, nor do I know how they choose the related posts. That’s just the way WordPress does things.


  1. Good morning, Julia!
    Of course you would have many photos of someone who creates a party wherever she goes!
    I love this photo, and yes, I am smiling right now!

    • 🙂 So am I.

  2. MaryAnn

    Julia, What a beautiful tribute! I’m thankful to Jeff & to you for your encouragement!
    What a terrific shot of these beautiful young people, who show their love!
    The photo of me, while at your home in Virginia, is another happy moment: WALKING IN THE RAIN, behind your house! How delighted I was when it began to rain! You were very accommodating, even though that is NOT your favorite weather for walking. Thank you, again for that wonderful day.
    aka “Momba”

    • 🙂 ❤ 🙂

  3. Lydia

    Wonderful words and beautiful message. I’m so grateful for special friends who bring such joy to our lives. I needed this so much. We just said goodbye to four friends who enriched us with their friendship, their commitment to the Lord and their wonderful disposition. Three of them were ministers. One of them was a custodian in an elementary school who left an impression on the students who had come to this country knowing not a word of English. He was from a town in the state of Oaxaca in Mexico, where they speak their native dialect in their homes and Spanish on the outside. He came to this country as a young man, and learn to speak English, enough to work and get by. Always happy, always with a smile, ready to help others. Quite a hard worker, Covid took his life.He left good memories, a wonderful family and many, many friends. I thank God for his life of service. Blessings, Julia.

    • Lydia, I’m so sorry for your losses, and that I’m so late getting around to these comments. Goodbyes can be quite painful, and when you are dealt several at once, it can get overwhelming. I realized a couple of decades ago that I had to get accustomed to more and more such farewells as I grow older and older. That is perhaps the single hardest thing about growing older. I hope your memories have been and will continue to be a comfort to you and all those who loved your friends!

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