Tag Archives: happiness

Every time you smile

“Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” — Mother Teresa I wrote last year about Matt’s smiles, and how they have decorated countless photos and memories in his 28 years.  That post is linked below.  He’s had some help and encouragement in …

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What anyone wants to remember

“A childhood is what anyone wants to remember of it.” — Carol Shields “A happy childhood can’t be cured.  Mine’ll hang around my neck like a rainbow…”— Hortense Calisher I’ve written before about how it can be difficult being a child or young person, and that’s more true for some than for others.  Most of …

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Personal charm

“There is no personal charm so great as the charm of a cheerful temperament.”  — Henry Van Dyke I’ve written here before about my friend Maggie and her family, and the happy memories I have of them that go back forty years — it’s hard for me to believe we first met in 1974!  Obviously, …

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Visual surprise

“Visual surprise is natural in the Caribbean; it comes with the landscape, and faced with its beauty, the sigh of History dissolves.” — Derek Walcott There’s nothing like a good dose of the Caribbean to warm and brighten the dullest March.  There are places more elegant, more prestigious, more affluent or trendy, but I’ve never …

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Consider having fun

“If you only do what’s important, you’ll never have any fun, unless you consider having fun important.” — Ashleigh Brilliant If you don’t consider having fun important, I hope you’ll think about it and change your mind!  Recently we had a discussion in the comments here, about end-of-life wishes, and things people wish they had …

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What you now have

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.” ― Epicurus It’s so easy to get caught up in looking ahead to the next goal or aspiration.  There’s nothing wrong with anticipation; it makes life more fun. …

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The onrush of scenery

“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, “This is what it is to be happy.” ― Sylvia Plath It’s difficult to read this quote from Plath without thinking of the sad reality that she chose to end her own life while still young, with two small children.  …

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Pretty, yes pretty!

“To my mind, a picture should be something pleasant, cheerful, and pretty, yes pretty! There are too many unpleasant things in life as it is without creating still more of them.” ― Pierre-Auguste Renoir With that view of art, no wonder Renoir left us so many gorgeous works to enjoy.  I realize there is a …

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Never too old to begin

“You’re never too old to begin a journey, if you don’t insist on completing it.” — Ashleigh Brilliant No matter what age, nobody has any guarantees of success or even survival when they embark on a journey.  If physical or financial limitations do not stand in your way, why should chronological age?  Besides, one destination …

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Deep in December

“Deep in December it’s nice to remember Although you know the snow will follow Deep in December it’s nice to rememberWithout a hurt the heart is hollow…” — (Lyricist) Tom Jones, from The Fantasticks I grew up listening to this lovely song, and Jeff and I saw the staged musical on one of our first …

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On his darkest day

You have to believe in happiness, Or happiness never comes … Ah, that’s the reason a bird can sing – On his darkest day he believes in Spring. —  Douglas Malloch I’ve done a lot of walking through snow and ice the past few days, and already there’s a part of me that is eager …

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Joy is what happens

“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.” ― Marianne Williamson We don’t tend to think of airports as comfortable or happy places, but this video might change your mind.  During my years with USAir, I often thought how the airport gates were a setting that …

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Consolation brought me joy

“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.” — Psalm 94:19 Here in the northern hemisphere, December is the month of consolation, when the cold and decay of nature’s landscape are offset by the joys of celebration and gratitude.  Today we thank you for the cheer and solace of your kind thoughts, …

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Remembering: Little advantages

“Human felicity is produced not so much by great pieces of good fortune that seldom happen, as by little advantages that occur every day.” —Benjamin Franklin Just as it’s often the minor irritations that distract us and wear us down, so too the power of small blessings can transform our lives.  The trick is becoming aware of …

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What the world gives you

“Use what you have, use what the world gives you. Use the first day of fall: bright flame before winter’s deadness; harvest; orange, gold, amber; cool nights and the smell of fire. Our tree-lined streets are set ablaze, our kitchens filled with the smells of nostalgia: apples bubbling into sauce, roasting squash, cinnamon, nutmeg, cider, …

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Such a beautiful day

“I cried at first…..and then, it was such a beautiful day, that I forgot to be unhappy.” — Frances Noyes Hart Have you ever walked outside in a gloomy mood, and been overtaken by the sheer beauty of the day? It’s happened to me many times, and the feeling of relief and joy that floods …

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The greater part

“I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances.  We carry the seeds of the one or the other about with us in our …

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Sowing a seed

You never can tell when you do an act Just what the result will be; But with every deed you are sowing a seed, Though the harvest you may not see. — Ella Wheeler Wilcox It’s not surprising that several research studies document the benefits of volunteering to help others, whether formally or informally.  While …

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Alchemy in sorrow

“Sorrow fully accepted brings its own gifts. For there is alchemy in sorrow. It can be transmitted into wisdom, which, if it does not bring joy, can yet bring happiness.” — Pearl S. Buck I believe that true optimism must include comprehension of the role sorrow plays in all our lives.  A positive outlook is not a form …

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What we enjoy

“I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment…” — C. S. Lewis Tea. Books. Friends. Flowers. Animals. Family. I hope nobody is getting sick of seeing these and other topics here, over and over, because I have so much fun writing about what I enjoy — including anything …

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In season

“Love is a fruit in season at all times, and within the reach of every hand.”  — Mother Teresa  With all the people in the world who are hurting for lack of love, can we really believe that it is within the reach of every hand?  Absolutely yes, if we think of love as something …

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Our ordinary days

“Summer weather, like being in love, is a philosopher’s stone which turns our ordinary days to gold. But not the whole day… For it is never the whole day, never all our life which is transformed in any happiness, but only the exquisite moments.” — Nan Fairbrother More than any other season, summer seems to …

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Walk and be happy

“The sum of the whole is this: walk and be happy; walk and be healthy. The best way to lengthen out our days is to walk steadily and with a purpose.” — Charles Dickens When I think about it, I’m surprised that this quote came from Charles Dickens.  It sounds more like something we’d hear …

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When I am laughing

“I love myself when I am laughing…” — Zora Neale Hurston Do you have memories of times when you laughed until you cried?  Or when you simply couldn’t stop laughing?  We used to call this “getting our tickle box turned over” but whatever it is called, it’s wonderful.  In such a state, almost everything that is even …

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Rejoicing that I’m still here

“Getting older is the best thing that ever happened to me.  I wake up every morning rejoicing that I’m still here with an opportunity to begin again and be better.”  — Oprah Winfrey A long life is a decidedly mixed blessing.  Those of us who make it to our eighth and ninth decades will do …

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