The truth is, I've never read the 14,000 Things to Be Happy About book. Maybe I've flipped through it once or twice--my oldest daughter owns and loves it. She has even shared her own quirky, poignant, delightful lists of things to be happy about which I've very much enjoyed reading.
Me? I've long been a fan of grat lists, quick collections of things I'm particularly grateful for in that moment. I think the difference between the two might be that the latter is more likely to be very specific to the writer's life while the former is made up of more universal concepts that a broad range of readers could relate to.
For example, if I were to write a grat list right now, it'd include things like:
1. The mild weather this week.
2. The fact that somehow with seven people in this family, we only just now in December 2021 have had our first student asked to quarantine due to potential COVID exposure at school. It's amazing to me that we made it this far without direct exposure not to mention the fact that it happened at the point in time when we are all vaccinated. (The only reason our child even had to quarantine was because her age group was only recently approved for the vaccine and the exposure came at not-quite-fourteen-days after her second shot.)
3. Finding time to take walks with my husband.
4. Being surprised by the Christmas cactus. It was just over there on the window sill all green and I forgot what it was, I guess. Until boom! (Or bloom?! Bloom boom!) Instant color and beauty.
5. College kids coming home for the holidays!
But the above grat list is just for an example, of course, since I'm not even writing one this week. Duh.
I'm trying something new, see? A list of things to be happy about, that hopefully other people can relate to and then remember to look around for joy in their lives. That's my real list this week, and it includes:
1. Watching High School music teachers direct their jazz bands.
2. Noticing natural colors and patterns.
4. Flags that get stuck to trees in such a way that they look like they're flying even when there's no wind.
(I've seen two of these recently, believe it or not!)
|Our dryer has been broken and repaired twice recently. It's currently working but it was so warm yesterday (see #1 above-above) I just had to use the line instead!
Okay, so honestly, they're both sort of grat lists but I hope the second one is universal enough to inspire you to remember to take a moment to look around and find small moments to find joy.