happiness

The boy and his bag

I played a little bit with my boy this evening. It’s the first thing we’ve done in over a month that didn’t involve him getting treats. We started playing the friendly game with a dreaded plastic bag. Considering he started out faking a heart attack to get away from the monster I think we did really well. He sniffed it by the end of the evening. 

It felt so good to get to do something with him again – it was good for both of us. And if I can get him so he’s better on the ground that will make things better in the saddle. 

Happiness


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Out the kitchen window 

This photo may not immediately look like a happiness moment, but it is – and I will explain why.

I was in the kitchen making supper and I looked out the window to see my daughter at the barn with my cousin and her daughter. There was a newly orphaned calf in the corral and my niece was feeding it (I think – it was hard to tell exactly what she was doing from where I stood).

The feeling that came over me was one of incredible peace and happiness. My girl is as drawn to the barn as I was at her age and it’s so awesome that my cousin is so patient and shows her what is going on during their very busy calving season.

As I watched them from the window (before I ran out to join) I felt so grounded and happy. This is the kind of moment I dreamed about, this freedom, this connection, this easy joy.

I am so grateful for happy moments like these. 

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Cousin chats

Today was a day filled with unexpected cousin chats. It’s a happiness moment because I love the fact that I have so many cousins, and even the ones I don’t get to see very often I feel I have a tight bond with.

I had a barnyard chat with one at home, a skype chat with one in Scotland, a Canadian Tire chat with one in town, a phone chat with one in Winners, and then a text string with some others.

It’s a big deal because I’ve been feeling kind of overwhelmed lately. It’s good to remember that there’s this tribe of people around. We all have our crap that we are dealing with, but we are also all there for each other, there’s a lot of joy to be shared. When I’m feeling low it helps to remember how isolated we were even just a couple of years ago, and how much better it is now.

Happiness, blessings, joy, peace. I love it.

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Sharing your happiness

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I’ve been on this happiness quest for sometime now. It amazes me to think how far I’ve come since I started from the broken mess I was a few years ago. Yet, there is so far yet to go – it will be a lifelong journey for sure.

I had a happiness fact driven home today for me. I’ve realized that my happiness cup is now full enough that I need to make a real, conscious effort to share the happiness instead of merely seek it. I’ve realized that happiness is done best when it is shared with others.

There’s this guy in Cochrane who in my opinion has one of the worst jobs I could imagine. The worst for me that is, not that it’s a terrible job. He’s one of those guys who stands on the street with a sign for a shop nearby and waves at potential customers. I’ve seen these guys (and gals) all over the place and they always look pretty miserable, bored, unhappy, lonely… just like how I would be if I were doing that job.

But this guy – the guy who carries the sign for Little Caesars in town – he has a blast doing his job. He puts in his earbuds and dances his entire shift. He waves his sign around, smiles, laughs, waves at drivers and pedestrians and genuinely seems to enjoy what he’s doing. And it’s infectious – I read about him on the local Facebook pages – other drivers are cheered up by his happiness dance as well.

Today we were driving by and he walked in front of the car at the light. He stopped mid cross and busted a little move, turned and gave Jenna and I a huge smile, then walked the rest of the way across. We both had huge grins on our faces as we drove away. It’s amazing how easy it is to share happiness when you are doing something you love.

It was a great happiness moment because not only did I find joy in it, but I realized how important it is to keep sharing that joy with others.

 

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The heart of Calgary 

We headed down to the Stampede today despite the torrential downpour. It’s been a cold, rainy week here – kind of disappointing considering the 10 day party that should be going on. When we got to the grounds there was no line at all to get in which never happens. 

Despite the fact that it was raining so hard you could barely see, the volunteers were jumping up and down to stay warm with big smiles on their faces waving people into the gates. I was impressed by how happy they were considering the fact I knew they were soaked and cold. 

We had a once in a lifetime Stampede experience in that despite the fact that we were unable to go on any rides the entire experience cost me under 15$ for our C-Train tickets and that was it. We were gifted passes into the gate by one cousin and 50$ in Stampede Bucks by another one and that covered our costs at the grounds. Of course all we needed were mini donuts and cotton candy, but still…

It was impressive how cheerful people were at the grounds considering how not cheerful the weather was. The people at the mini donuts were singing Christmas carols, people were running through the rain laughing, a little kid was wacking a puddle with his toy sword. 

On our return home a couple approached us and gave us train tickets they’d just bought but then had decided to stay at the grounds longer, so we rode home for free. When we arrived at our stop a very kind gentleman stood in the rain and held the door for us so we could run inside ahead of him. 

These are the reasons why I love Calgary. It is a city that has huge heart. Even now when it has grown so much and there has been such a downturn in the economy  there is still so much kindness and joy in our city. It made me proud to call this place home. My happiness moment, my Calgary. 

Gotta love those donuts 

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Walk your talk 

On the way through town tonight the kids and I saw a bumper sticker that said the best sermons are lived not preached. 

Those words really hit home today as most of it was spent thinking about integrity and living my faith by my actions not my words. I dispise when people preach at me how I should live,  but their own actions say something completely different. I spent a lot of years living with the ache in my gut and in my heart that comes from that kind of imbalance. I’m certainly not there yet, but I strive to have my actions and my beliefs be one and the same. Fortunately I am now surrounding myself with people who help guide me to this instead of tear me apart from it. 

My happiness moment was a peaceful evening at a dear friend’s home with my monsters. There’s a lot of joy found in a comfortable moment. 

As a bonus we had a beautiful sunset to watch on the way home. In case I haven’t mentioned it – I love where I live. 

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Regrouping 

Today was a day spent reorganizing and catching up on my life. I feel like things have been so busy lately – a good and happy busy – there has not been enough time to stop and breathe into my balance. I managed to do that a little bit this morning. It recharged me and set me back on my proper course. 

I also spent some time looking at an opportunity that has presented itself for my blog. I’m not sure yet where I will go with it, but it’s pretty sweet to have this fall into my lap. 

Breathing back into my balance – my happiness moment. 

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Be the change

Be the change you want to see in the world (Gandhi) is one of my favourite sayings of all time. I think it’s a great reminder that we get back what we put out there, that if we want to see and receive love we need to give and live with it. On the flip side, if you expect darkness and pain that’s usually what you get as well. It is one of the quotes that I kept close to my heart as I started climbing to a better place.

Today I ran into someone who embodies these words. Every time I see her she’s happy and positive – authentically looking for the bright side of things, and I know she’s seen some dark days. Every time I see her I want to run over and visit with her because without fail she makes me feel happier and lighter than I was before. She has that kind of energy that draws people to her. I know I’m not the only one who feels this way, I hear other people get just as excited when they see her. Melba’s here, let’s go say hi.

That is the kind of change I want to be in the world. What a gift to bring joy and happiness just by shining your light into the world. She inspires me to be a better, happier person. When I think of how I want to be as I grow and find myself, it is to become someone like that. I am so lucky that she is in my life, it was a beautiful happiness moment running into her today.

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God’s art

If you read my blog on a regular basis you’ll know that I am grateful every day that we are back home around our tribe in the place that we love most. 

There’s something about being here that is calming to my soul. Most mornings while we are driving into school we are able to look west and enjoy the mountain view. The kids get as excited as I do about how clearly we can see them and how lucky we are that this is our life. 

As a child I spent hours out here, usually on the back of my horse, appreciating God’s artwork. I didn’t know it at the time but I was doing an active meditation and communicating directly with my Source. 

Now not only do I have the opportunity to do that again, but I have the joy of experiencing it with my kids. 

Being able to appreciate the beauty that is around us really helps me to put things in perspective. The material things we have lost can always be replaced. But the joy I experience from living a life I love is priceless. 

My happiness moment today was admiring God’s artwork with Jacob as we drove into town. We are blessed. This life of happiness and love we are attracting gets brighter every day. 

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Goldfish monsters 

We had a very unexpected laugh until your gut hurts happiness moment last night. 

I had finally got both kids in bed and was lying in my own bed reading Facebook. Yes, I know it goes against all my Ayurvedic advice, but sometimes that happens. Anyway, I came across this post:

  
and for some reason it struck me as so funny I couldn’t stop laughing. Both kids started yelling from their rooms asking what I was doing and wanting to know what was so funny. I couldn’t stop laughing long enough to answer. All I could get out was goldfish….bwaahaaaa….goldfish

They both came into my room and I let them read the meme. Pretty soon they were both laughing as hard as I was. 
Then Jacob says you know what my brain does when I go to bed? I’ll be lying there almost asleep, I’ll say “ok good night brain it’s time to shut down now” and my brain says “you know what you haven’t thought about for a long time? Monsters under your bed”. 
I asked him if he needed me to get my pillowcase and go monster hunting like I used to do when he was 2. We all laughed again and then laughed about monster goldfish smiling back from under the bed. 

We lay on my bed and laughed for almost a half hour. This is what this quest for happiness has brought us. Enough of the fear and pain is gone that now we can embrace the joy. It was an awesome late night happiness moment. 

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