On discovering the former happy….

Reading The Happiness Project is really making me consider the things that actually make me happy. I feel like I’ve been bored and really boring lately. I don’t do a lot of interesting things most days. So the idea was posed in the book to think about the things that made me happy as a child…those things probably still make me happy. 

As as adult: 
Eating really good food at really good restaurants
Drinking vintage cocktails
Learning about and making vintage cocktails
Throwing dinner parties (sometimes)
Playing the piano
As a child: 
Riding my bike
Playing the piano
Playing chase and tag
Playing with the cats
Jumping on the trampoline
As it turns out, there are some things that overlap from childhood to adulthood. Making music is apparently something that makes me really happy. I can’t write songs that are worth a damn, but I love making music. I love singing along to the radio and when I play the piano. I should really bust out one of the pianos we actually own. How is it that we have two pianos and neither of them are set up? That’s silly. 
Apparently, being active is something I do actually enjoy, though in different ways. Camping, hiking, and yoga make me very happy. And more often than not, running provides a great deal of joy. I think about all the times that the sailor has chased me around the house and I get giggly every time! Playing games is just something that’s ingrained in me. Most of the time, I truly don’t care if I win. I’m in it for the fun (but I’ll start to get a little upset if I lose too frequently at word games). And if I didn’t think it might kill me, I’d probably jump on trampolines a lot more. And I should really consider getting a bike. I miss riding my bike. Yoga provides so many levels of happiness, I can’t contain them all in one blog. Camping is something I’ve only started really enjoying in recent years. Maybe the last ten years or so. I tolerated it well enough when I was young, but now that I’m older, it takes on a different form of happiness. I have really fond memories of camping with my family and I hope to cultivate similar moments in my own family. The only difference will be that I will definitely bring boxed wine on our camping trips. Dancing is easily my favorite form of “being active.” I think I honestly feel the most alive when I’m dancing. I miss it terribly. I’m good at it and I love doing it and I love learning it. I think that’s how you know you should be doing anything. It hurts my feet, it makes my knees ache, and it does things to my hips that running only wishes it could do to me. And yet? I want more of it. The twirling, the rise and fall, the gliding…it’s definitely my favorite. There will be much kitchen/living room dancing with the baby once she arrives! 
Obviously, there are things that I love that aren’t the most financially responsible things to do. I’d love to eat at posh restaurants at least once a week, but a) I’d have to drive more than an hour to get to one and b) it would be pretty expensive. I’m not above spending $150 or more on a really good meal. (As an aside, I should probably try to talk the sailor into one last blow out meal before Bebe Girl gets here.) I also really love shopping, especially if I get to shop for someone else. But that can also get pricy. I’m about to enter the danger zone of pregnancy now that I know our baby’s gender…I’m going to have to be really careful! 
Then I think about my pets. I grew up with a litany of cats in my life. They were all pretty, black, male, and outdoor, so they all had a fair bit of spunk in them. Some were even random strays we took in. I loved those cats and snuggled with them all the time. They were funny and clever, each with their own personality. One liked to sit next to me while I played piano. Another got his head routinely stuck in ice cream containers. Another liked to chase bees. They were just weird. And while they were all haggard messes, they were full of the loves. Now I have two dogs (who remain small enough that, despite their advancing age, I still think of as puppies) and every day, they make me laugh. I love coming home to them. I love that they try to wake me up in the morning. And I really love when they love up on me…when they know I’m sick or sad and they just lay with me, there’s really nothing that makes me quite that happy. 

So when I’m sitting around the house, being bored, playing games on my iPhone or binging on Law & Order: SVU for the 300th time, my goal is to start being more conscious of the things I actually like doing. I have the incredible gift of loads of free time right now. I want to take advantage of that the way I really should. So if you ever hear me complaining of being bored, refer me to my own list of things to do. 

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