Oct 18, 2010
We live in a world in which we see and hear terrible things all the time. We don't need spooky Halloween stories, just watch the news for crying out loud! Every day it is something new that I shake my head thinking, what kind of world do we live in? Then our own day to day life can be a haunting tale at times. Always things to do and not enough time to do it. Okay, set lack of time aside and then think lack of money! If I won the lottery . . . they say I'd have a whole new set of problems in life. Well, I'd be okay finding that out for myself. It is so easy to get bogged down in what we have to do that we don't want to like dishes, yard work, find that lost library book (or is that just me . . .). We have to think about what we should spend our precious dollars on. Lunch with a friend? Well, I don't know. They spend the whole time telling me their problems and today I have enough of my own. (Just kidding, I'm always willing to listen.) Should I spend it on painting my living room which really needs "something" and painting is the cheapest way to fix it? Should I go to the toy store with my kids so that they can make the list of toys they don't need and I can't afford that they would like Santa to bring? No. See what I mean?
But wait a minute!!! Life offers many free moments of happiness and instead of focusing on things that cost both money and peace of mind----------- this journal is about those free moments we wouldn't trade for anything.
I had one yesterday. We have some super dee duper big oak trees in our back yard. The leaves have started to fall and when I tell you we get some leaves in our yard------------- I'm not doing the scene justice. Mountains of leaves. And every year we rake and blow them into a big pile. It goes in phases as at this time of year--------- you get leaves into a large pile while other leaves are falling where you just raked. So yesterday we worked on our pile and it was big. My kids who had been watching a Scooby Doo Halloween special came out to help as we finished raking. They have little mini rakes and we all worked as a family for what we knew was coming. Finally Dad says "I think it is time". Two excited little boys put their rakes to the side and run as fast as they can into the pile yelling "CANNON BALL!!" They jumped and jumped. Then our pup, Candy (I did NOT name her . . . ) came a running. She jumped in that leaf pile like the boys did. She'd run and jump in and dive and bounce around. (no cannonballs, I don't think). So there were my three "kids" playing and laughing in the beautiful sunshine. It looked and sounded like happiness. If I could bottle that moment, I would.
Another free moment of happiness . . . you have picked out your pumpkins for the year. It was a drought year in our state so they weren't the best pumpkins this year---------- but none the less, we went to the patch and got our orange friends to decorate. I did grow pumpkins this year in my garden but they were few and far between----- and really little. Hard to carve. Anyway, Dad gets out the "knife" which is designated our pumpkin cutting knife. He cuts off the top step which becomes the lid and sets it aside. Then we place it on the newspaper I've laid out on the patio. Two pumpkins and two boys. They have rolled up their sleeves and are ready to go. Tentatively at first and then more forcefully they stick their hands down into the gooey pulp of the pumpkin. And the look on their face as they pull out the first hand full of seeds . . . a free moment of happiness that you see in their eyes.
Later in the evening when we were having reading time . . . I had gotten a bunch of books from the library (which is free happiness if you don't lose any of the darn books!!) with a Halloween theme. I start to read to them when my six year old interrupts me and says "Mama, I want to read it." And then he starts reading these words off the pages. These weren't kids books written for beginning readers or anything so he had to sound words out and work on it. He was self motivated to read those hard books and did a fine job doing so. When there was an easier word on the page like a, an, it, the, etc.----- my older son would point to it so my younger son could read them. They worked together to read those stories to me. THAT free moment of happiness was all mine. I'm so proud of them.