Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Day 27

Still sick. :( I did nothing today but lay here and try to breathe. Fortunately by this afternoon, after basically a 24 hour long asthma attack, the medication finally started to work and I'm breathing better now. I still feel like crap, but at least I don't feel like I'm suffocating.

So my real happy thing today is that I'm breathing better. I can't take a picture of that though, so you get a picture of my dinner again instead. Sweet and sour chicken. It was good, and after a crappy day, yummy dinner made me happy.

Here's hoping tomorrow is a little better.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Wendy-1 asthma-0

This evening my asthma decided it would just go ahead and try to kill me, so I ended up in urgent care with steroids and a stronger breathing treatment.  Not my favorite day, but my asthma didn't kill me, so I guess there's that. Let's hope tomorrow is a better day.

Day 26

So today I take a pass. I will share a photo, taken today, but not by me, because I have done nothing but lay here and try to breathe all day.

The head cold I had yesterday is now in my chest and when that happens my stupid crappy asthma flares up and today has pretty much been one continuous asthma attack. I've used my inhaler, I've done breathing treatments with my nebulizer and nothing is helping. Ugh. Today has not been one of my better days.

So nothing particularly happy has happened today. Well, I take that back, Shawn brought me more soup for lunch, which made me happy. But I already used up that happy for my project. Mostly my whole day has just been spent sitting here trying to breathe.

So I will share a picture that Shawn took this morning. And now that I think about it, the picture made me happy, so maybe it counts after all.

This morning was the preschool zoo field trip. They do it every year and it's usually a tradition that Shawn comes with us, so he got the morning off work to go, and then I was too sick to go so he and Clarissa went without me.

He took pictures though, so I kind of got to pretend like I was there. :) That made me happy.  Really, if every day of this project could just be a picture of the nice things Shawn does for me, I could fill up 100 days with no problem. He does something to make me happy every day.

So here is a picture of Clarissa with her preschool class at the zoo. It looks like they had fun and that makes me happy.

And now I shall continue to sit here and attempt to breathe. Ugh.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Day 25

Yesterday afternoon I started feeling sick. Today I have a terrible head cold. I feel super crappy and I have been sitting here doped up on cold medicine all day.

I was having a hard time coming up with a happy thing today because I haven't done much today and wasn't feeling all that happy, and then Shawn called on his way home from work and said he was bringing me chicken noodle soup.

I don't know what it is about chicken noodle soup when I'm sick, but it tastes better than anything in the world. It was exactly what I needed.

So today my thoughtful husband and a big bowl of chicken noodle soup made me happy.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Day 24

Shawn and I weren't moving very fast this morning and Clarissa came and climbed into bed with us. We laid there for a while, enjoying her giggles and silliness. She got into a silly face contest with Shawn and he can always get her giggling. I love her laugh, I love her sense of humor. When she bursts into giggles it's infectious. I love having a husband who is so great with our kids and can always make them laugh. Hanging out with family on a lazy Sunday morning makes me happy!


Saturday, April 26, 2014

A second happy thing today!

Remember last year when Josh entered that Lego Harry Potter animation in the Kiwanis Teen Film Festival and he won? He entered another animation in this years competition and the film festival was tonight. But unfortunately it was the same day as Wicked and we couldn't make the four hour drive to attend it.

But his filmmaking teacher went and she just called us with the news that he won again! That kid rocks. I'm so proud of him!

Day 23

Today is a day I have been waiting for since last fall! We finally got to see Wicked!!!

This was kind of a big deal for me. I have been waiting for years to see this play. I don't have a bucket list but if I did, seeing Wicked would be on it. We've actually talked several times about taking a trip New York to see it but there just has never been a good time to go. Three years ago the Broadway touring cast came though Boise but it was still during that time that we were working on attachment with Clarissa and we weren't ready to leave her with any one yet so we weren't able to go. I swear, every single person I know saw it the last time it was in town. People talked about it for weeks, and I sulked about missing it until it finally left town, lol.

But last fall I got a message from my cousin letting me know that it was coming back to Boise in April and she was doing an advanced group ticket buy and wanted to know if I wanted in. Uh, YES!!! So we bought three tickets, for me, Shawn and Josh and I have had those tickets sitting in a cupboard for months.

And today was finally the day!! We found someone to watch Matthew and Clarissa and Shawn, Josh and I got all dressed up and spent the afternoon at the theater. And it was awesome. AWESOME. I love live theater so much anyway, and this one was just amazing. I've waited so long to see it that as soon as the lights went down and the music started I got a little teary. I was finally there!!

We all had a great time and there was a very dramatic, very awesome scene right before intermission and as soon as intermission started Josh said "That is the first time music ever gave me goosebumps!" I know, right?! It was awesome! That made me happy!

So today was a pretty awesome day. A really really happy day. :)

Friday, April 25, 2014

Day 22

Today I decided to get back outside with my camera. It was absolutely pouring rain this morning and I love  the rain. I thought I could get some great shots of the rain and make rain my happy thing today.

The problem was that it was almost raining too hard to really get the shots I wanted to get. I was standing out there in a downpour and I starting to get worried about my camera getting too wet. I really need to get a waterproof case for it for days like this.

So I went out there on a whim and then found that I wasn't really prepared to do what I thought I wanted to do. My neighbors must have thought I was nuts standing out there with my camera in the rain, lol.

I was hoping to get some fun shots of puddles and raindrops, but that didn't work out. Instead I ended up heading to the backyard and taking photos of raindrops on a really pretty flowering tree in my backyard that is just starting to bloom. They turned out kind of pretty, but I'm still itching to get back out there and take some more raindrop shots and do what I set out to do. The rain has stopped for the moment though, so that may or may not happen.

I had lots of fun out in the rain though, even if my neighbors thought I was crazy! :) Rainy days make me happy!





Thursday, April 24, 2014

Day 21

I have three things to discuss today.

First, before I forget, I need to answer the duck question! Someone asked me about it in my blog comments and someone else asked me on Facebook yesterday. I absolutely love that people check on our duck situation every spring! It makes me happy that people remember that. 

Unfortunately I don't really have a lot to report. Sadly we aren't getting as many ducks in our neighborhood as we used to and I don't think the ducks that laid eggs in our yard those two years are coming back. Oddly, there has been a duck group on our street this spring. Two males and a female. Ducks almost always pair up in couples, but these three seem to be sticking together. I've seen them walking up and down our street this past week and we actually fed him in our front yard last night, but I don't have high hopes that they're going to stick around. Every spring I hope for a new duck couple to make our yard their home, but I don't know if we're going to get that lucky again. 

Second, I can't remember how much I have mentioned our orthodontic adventures recently. Maybe I forgot to mention it at all. Basically the orthodontist has finally decided that both boys are ready for braces. I was really hoping to do them one at a time because it's so ridiculously expensive, but they both really need to be done now. I don't want to put off Josh's any longer because he's starting high school and he wants to get them over with, and poor Matthew just has so much work that needs to be done that it needs to get going now. 

So Josh has already gone in for all his X-rays and impressions and today I went to the office to meet with the doctor and go over what needs to be done for him. He's getting his top braces on next month and then they'll add bottom ones a few months later. 

We're still not sure what exactly is happening with Matthew. His overbite is so severe that it needs to get started, but his baby teeth haven't all fallen out yet, so the doctor thinks we're going to have to do his in phases. I'm still not exactly sure what that entails yet. He has an appointment to go back in June and they'll decide then what needs to be done and how they're going to do it. 

So two kids in braces. Yikes. Kids are expensive. 

Third is my happy thing for the day. Shawn had the day off today, and I'm always happy when he's around! He took the day off because Clarissa was supposed to have a field trip to the zoo this morning for preschool and it has been kind of a tradition for him to come with us, but then the field trip got cancelled due to rain. So instead we had a nice day together just hanging out. I love it when he has the day off on a weekday when the kids are at school. Shawn is my best friend and getting to hang out with him is always a fun time. Even if we're just hanging out doing nothing exciting, my life is always happy when he's around. :)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Day 20

Woohoo, I made it 20 days in a row! :)

OK, so today's happy thing actually started out as one thing and ended up as another. I was sitting here this afternoon thinking about what was making me happy today and I looked out the window at the spring flowers and those have definitely been making me happy lately, so I thought I'd get my camera and go out and take some pictures.

So I got my camera, sat in the grass, started taking pictures and I instantly had a moment of pure joy where I remembered how much I absolutely love sitting in the grass with my camera. I don't take nature photos very often anymore. I don't know why, I just get busy and don't take the time to do it.

Then when I do it it takes me about five seconds to remember why I love it SO much. My soul needs to be outside with a camera in my hand. It instantly puts me at peace. Why do I always seem to forget that? Why do I not take the time to do something that makes me so happy? It doesn't even matter to me so much if the pictures are awesome, I just LOVE taking them. I love the creativity of it. I love putting the magnifying lens on my camera and crawling in the grass, finding the detail in all the little things in nature. It makes my brain come alive. It makes my heart happy. It makes me feel peaceful and right with the world.

So the spring flowers were my original happy thing. Then I realized that my REAL happy thing was taking photos of them. These are little tiny purple flowers in my front yard that I used the magnifying filter on.


And then I came in the house and edited it and had such a fun time that I added a grunge technique to it, just for fun. I like playing around with different techniques when I'm bored. Later I may play around with it some more.


So that's what made me happy today. Really, really, really happy.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Day 19

I'll admit it, it's 10pm and I'm rushing around looking for something to take a photo of for my happy project. Finding some random thing at 10pm just so you can say you did it isn't really the point of this project. 

Many things made me happy today but sometimes I'm not able to get the camera out in the middle of my happy thing and then I have no photo to show. I had better ideas for today but the picture taking didn't work out. 

So let me tell you a few of the happy things that happened to me today and then I'll share the photo of the thing I took a photo of five minutes ago in desperation. 

Matthew has a friend spending the night tonight because his parents had something come up and they need me to get him off to school in the morning. Matthew adores this friend and getting to have a sleep over, especially on a school night, is a huge deal for both of them, so they've been super cute this evening having such a good time together and getting ready for bed. They're still in there talking. I'm going to have to insist they go to sleep soon. :) Seeing them have so much fun together made me happy. 

I visited with some church friends today. It's nice getting out and talking to friends. Spending time chatting on a friends couch made me happy. 

The grass is getting green outside and I am loving seeing color in the world again. After a long winter of grey skies and dead grass, spring is making me very happy. 

But I didn't take a photo of any of those things. I just didn't get a chance to in my busy day.

So here us what I took a photo of five minutes ago in desperation. Leftover Easter candy. Chocolate and peanut butter make everyone happy, right?! The Easter bunny may or may not "accidentally" over-buy when it comes to Easter candy at our house. If the kids can't eat it all, well, I guess it's my duty to step in and help out. What are you going to do, it's just my job as a parent. :) 

I will try harder tomorrow, I promise. :) 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Day 18

This photo looks like a picture of a teenager playing on his phone. It's actually Josh reading his scriptures. Josh and I decided a few weeks ago to start having a short daily scripture study together when he gets home from school every afternoon. We do it before everyone else gets home, so it's quiet, and we read the assigned passages silently to ourselves and then discuss what we read.

It has lead to some really great religious discussions and I've really enjoyed that time with him. And he must be enjoying it to because he's actually the one to bring it up each day and remind me that it's time to read.

It has been a daily source of happiness for me since we started it and it's about time that I make it one of my happy posts. I have loved doing this so much that I'm planning to do the same thing with Matthew when Josh and I finish. Spending time one on one with my kids, talking to them and teaching them has always been something that I have found great joy in. You learn so much about your kids when you take time to sit down with them with no distractions and really listen to what they have to say. I learn something from my kids every day and I hope that they're learning something from me as well.

So reading scriptures with Josh definitely makes me happy!

Sunday, April 20, 2014


Josh and I finished The Book Thief this afternoon and then immediately watched the movie. I cried through the end of the book and then cried again though the movie. That is a lot of crying for one afternoon.

Despite the crying, I actually loved the book. I thought it was beautifully written, it made me think and it made me love books all over again. I liked the movie too, but they left a lot of stuff out. The book is definitely better.

So if you don't mind reading a book that will make you ugly cry for half an hour, I recommend The Book Thief. But seriously, you're going to need a Costco sized tissue box. Don't say I didn't warn you!

Day 17

Easter makes me happy!!



Saturday, April 19, 2014

Day 16

Ok, first of all, I lied. I took a photo of my iPad screen again. Seriously, this whole project is just going to be one big collage of what's happening on my iPad each day. Lame.

Second, this is a super duper weird subject for a happy day post. Just bear with me here. It might not make sense to you, but it makes sense to me.

Over the past week or so, Josh and I have been reading The Book Thief together. That alone is reason enough for a happy post. I've been having a good time lately reading with Josh. We pick a book, read it at the same time and then we discuss it, and so far we've read books that have been made into movies, so then we see the movie together. That makes me happy for a number of reasons. I love to read, I love sharing my love of books with my kids and I love that Josh is old enough now to read grown up books and  we can read a wider variety of books together. All of those things make me happy.

But today my photo is specifically about The Book Thief. I'm not quite done with it, we'll finish it up today, but I have LOVED this book. But the reason it's a weird subject for a Happy post is that it's a book about WWII Germany, narrated by Death. Yep, Death. (By the way, nothing I have said, or will say, is a spoiler. It's all stuff you can read on the book jacket or at the beginning of the book.) Death is telling the story of a young foster child in Germany during the war and how books change her life and the lives of the people around her. For someone like me, who has a great appreciation for books, I understand her fascination with them. In the book, books were hard to come by for a poor foster girl in that time period, especially since many of them were banned, so the way she comes across them and how they change her is a beautiful story and it was beautifully written.

I appreciate well written phrases. Sometimes when I'm reading I come across a well written description of something or a phrase that is particularly well written and I go back and read it over a few times, just because I like the way it sounds. I just want to let it sink in a little bit. I like the emotion it brings with it or the vivid picture it creates in my head.

This book has done that for me a lot. The further I get into it the more I am just devouring the pages. I like the way it's written, I like the descriptions of things, I like the little asides that Death gives about what it's like to be Death and have to collect all those poor souls during WWII.

I mean, I don't believe in a guy in a black robe with a scythe who comes to collect us when we die (although the Death in in the book claims he doesn't carry a scythe and only wears a black robe when it's cold, lol) but I like the vivid picture of him that the author has painted, and what it is like for him to constantly see death and have to collect the souls of those who pass. When we do think of "death", we tend to think of it as a scary thing, but the book has painted the idea of death as something gentle. Death cares about us and gently carries us away to a safe place. I like the picture that creates for me, especially in a book about WWII, where death was such a horrible gruesome thing.

Because I can kind of be an intense person at times, I don't read things, I ingest them. I don't read a book, I crawl right into the pages and live it. This is a book that has sucked me in for so many
different reasons. It's just a novel, not a true story, but it's based on a real events in world history and reading about how hard it is for the main character to get her hands on a book and how grateful she is for the ones she gets reignited my love of books. I have a whole stack of books I haven't gotten around to reading yet and hundreds more on shelves and in boxes. This book is making me realize how we take things like that for granted. Books are very accessible to me and sometimes I forget what a luxury that is. This book has reminded me to be grateful to live in an age where I can download a new book in two minutes and that the government doesn't tell me what I can and can't read.

It has also reminded me to be grateful for my freedom. I've always had a special interest in WWII history and every time I read a true story or novel based on that time period, it reminds me how lucky we are for our freedom and for the ability to come and go as we please and choose our own paths in life. I think we all take that for granted sometimes.

So today a book about WWII, narrated by Death, made me happy, lol. But what really made me happy was my love of books and the fact that this book reminded me how much I have to be grateful for.

And to add to the oddness of this happy post, I took a photo of a descriptive paragraph in the book that made me go back and read it several times and then read it to Shawn because I liked how it was written. It's Death, talking about what it's like to do the job of collecting souls during a war.

I know, it's in no way happy, but it makes sense to me. (and also, I'm reading the book on my iPad, hence the photo, which I swore to myself I wouldn't do anymore. Tomorrow, I will start tomorrow.)

Friday, April 18, 2014

Day 15

I made homemade mac and cheese tonight. It was not healthy in any sort of way, but it was gooooood. :)

Here's where I got the recipe if you're interested:

I added bacon. Because everything is better with bacon. :)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Day 14

My happy picture today is lame! The happy moment wasn't lame, but I forgot to take a photo of it while it was happening, so instead you get another picture of my phone. That's the third photo of a ipad/iphone screen in the past 14 days. This will be the last one for a while!

So my happy moment today was lunch with a friend. I love this friend because she was kind of an unexpected friend. I have actually known her for a very long time but we didn't become close until a few years ago.

She lives across the street from me. When we moved to this neighborhood, we were the youngest family on the street. Most of the people who live on our street have lived here since their houses were built in the 90's and have older kids. When we moved here we had toddlers, so at first I didn't feel like I had a lot in common with most of the people who were at least 10 years older than us and had teenagers. I didn't make close friends in the neighborhood very quickly. I know a lot of my neighbors from church and they're all great people, but no one that I clicked with as a close friend right away. I was just at a different place in my life at the time than most of the people around us.

So I've known this woman since we moved here, but her kids are a lot older than mine and we're both kind of homebodies, so we didn't really socialize. I think a few years went by before I really even spoke to her.

Then we got to know each other because we were asked to serve in a presidency together at church. She used to give me rides to the meetings we had to go to and we got to know each other and found out we have a lot in common.

Then almost comically we have been following each other around in our church service ever since. We keep getting called to serve in the same church functions. We started spending a lot of time together because of church and our friendship grew.

I really really enjoy her friendship. Because her kids are older than mine, she has life experience I don't have and I enjoy her perspective on raising teenagers and other things that I'm just beginning to experience. I generally have a hard time making female friends, but I really click with her.

We occasionally go out to lunch together just to chat and today was one of those days. Our birthdays are close together and I was going to take her out for her birthday and that didn't work out and then she was going to take me out for my birthday and today we finally got around to having a joint birthday lunch. I really enjoy talking to her, shes easy to talk to and I feel like we "get" each other and I don't always feel that with other women.

So I had a really great time and before I went I told myself to remember to take a picture so I could make it my happy thing for the day, but then I got home and realized that I forgot to do it. I tried to come up with an alternate happy thing that I could take a picture of, but that lunch really was my favorite thing today, so I'm using it anyway. So instead of a photo of the lunch, you get a photo of the invitation to the lunch. Being invited to lunch by a friend makes me happy!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Day 13

One of my Last Year Of My 30's goals was to be better organized. Organization is something I struggle with. I constantly have a million things going on in my head and I have a hard time focusing on one thing at a time sometimes. Ok, most of the time. :) I start a project and don't finish it because by the time I'm halfway through it my brain has already moved on to something else. I often have to force myself to stick to one thing and see it through. My life has been a long string of unfinished projects, and one of the goals for this year is to go back and finish a few of those unfinished projects.

So I realize that as I've been pondering being better organized, that what I really needed to do was start writing my goals and projects down and keeping better checklists that organize my crazy brain into manageable categories and realistic tasks.

So I turned to my trusty ipad and set up a good calendar and to-do list app to keep me organized. I've been really focusing on it for a couple of weeks and it's working great! I've got all my daily to-do items right there that I can cross off and it's one place to jot down shopping lists, dinner ideas, upcoming activities, etc. There is something satisfying about checking something off a to-do list.

So this morning I looked at my schedule for the day, I got the bills paid, I checked a few things off my list and I just had a nice moment of satisfaction that my life is a bit better organized these days. I'm still working on some bigger organization projects, but just creating a place to write it all down and sort it all down has been nice. I can flip through the folders in the app and see everything I need to work on and it has really helped me see what I need to focus on for that day instead of everything just being a jumbled mess in my brain.

Feeling organized makes me happy!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Day 12

Starting over is hard. I made it around the block before the cold air, the crazy amount of pollen in the air right now and the fact that it's been a while since I've been on my bike shut my lungs down and I had to come home.

Starting over is hard. Starting over with my lungs telling me that I'll never be able to do it is frustrating. But being back on my bike, for the few miniutes it didn't feel like it was killing me, felt wonderful and it made me happy. I'll keep trying, that's all I can do.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Day 11

Some days choosing to be happy is an easy task and other days it takes a bit more effort. Today was one of those days I had to really try hard! Not for any specific reason, I'm just having kind of a blah day. I'm tired and was feeling a bit uninspired when it came to finding my daily happy thing.

I was laying on my bed this afternoon having a little bit of quiet time and I was thinking about my day and what has made me happy today. There were some little things. I took Clarissa back to the allergist today for a follow up and her allergy medicine is working. That makes me happy! When we left the allergy office the sun was shining and it was a beautiful day. Sunny spring days make me happy. A friend called me today and we chatted for a bit and phone calls from friends always make me happy. I've started doing daily scripture study with Josh and today we made it a full week in a row without missing a day and that makes me happy! 

So as I was laying there I realized that my day was happier than I was giving it credit for. I might have been tired and feeling a bit unmotivated, but the happy moments were there, as they always are, even on the blah days. That was a nice thing to realize.

But unfortunately I didn't take any photos of those happy moments for my project! So as I was laying there thinking about what I could take my daily photo of, I looked over and noticed a lip balm on my nightstand.

Anyone who knows me well knows me I have a weird thing with lip balm. I collect it. If you dug through my nightstand drawer right now you'd probably find 20 of them. There are at least 5 in my purse. I don't even want to think of how many are in my bathroom or the cupboards and drawers in my kitchen. I don't know what it is about lip balm, but I love it. I especially love it if it comes in an unusual container or flavor. I'm kind of a sucker for them, I buy them everywhere I go. When I went to Korea I bought one in the airport within 10 minutes of getting off the plane. Four and a half years later, I still have it! It's a cool container. 

Several years ago I actually even learned how to make my own lip balm, and it was kind of awesome, if I do say so myself! I researched the ingredients, bought them in bulk from cosmetic supply companies online and made my own lip balm for quite a while. I even taught a few classes on how to make it. It was a big hit for a bit. I should get back into that. It was fun. 

Anyway, so basically I'm a lip balm hoarder, lol. There are worse things to hoard, I suppose. It's cheap and doesn't take up a lot of space. And my lips are soft and they taste nice, lol! That's only good news for Shawn though. :) 

So this afternoon I decided to pull the good camera out and give lip balm a photoshoot. I chose one that I bought in a church bookstore recently. It smells good and the message on the wrapper is significant to me. 

So here is my happy photo of the day. Lip balm makes me happy! 


Sunday, April 13, 2014

Day 10

Woohoo! Ten down, 90 to go! :)

So first of all, our day got off to a weird start today. Shawn got a call very early in the morning from the police letting him know that the pharmacy was robbed overnight and he needed to come in and open everything up and let the police in to investigate. So he drug himself out of bed and spent three hours over there this morning going over surveillance camera footage with the police and tying to figure out what was stolen and what happened. It's an ongoing investigation so that's all I can say about that, but I think it was a very weird experience for him. They didn't know if anyone was still in the building, so he unlocked the door and the police swarmed in with weapons drawn and it was just the sort of thing that you don't normally encounter in your life unless you work for the police department.

Anyway, everything will be fine, they'll figure it all out. It was just a weird event. A few years ago his  pharmacy was actually robbed at gunpoint during the day, but we happened to be out of town that day, so he had that day off. Fortunately no one was hurt and they caught the guy that time. Pharmacy robberies are unfortunately all too common it seems, and he works in a quiet, safe part of town. It's scary.

So that was the thing that made me UNhappy today, but now I'm here to tell you about the thing that made me happy, and it comes with a story.

When I was a kid, one of my favorite times of the week was Sunday evening. We would have a Sunday night treat, usually popcorn, and pile onto my parents bed and watch the Sunday night Disney movie. I loved hanging out in my parents bedroom. We had a living room with a TV in it, so I'm not sure why we watched TV in my parents bedroom, but it's a memory I enjoy.

Anyway, popcorn on Sunday afternoon has become a thing with me. It's like this habit that has carried over from my childhood. It's not a proper Sunday afternoon unless there is popcorn.

And I'm a popcorn snob. No microwave popcorn for me, it must be air popped. I have come to realize recently that air popped popcorn is becoming a thing of the past. I was having a popcorn discussion with some friends recently and they all looked at me like I was nuts when I said I still use an air popper. We use ours so much we recently had to get a new one because we literally wore the last one out.

The alternate acceptable method for making popcorn is the whirlypop, which is like an old fashion stove top popcorn kettle. It's absolutely delicious that way, but it's also a zillion calories and you have to buy the oil and flavoring and when we ran out last time I decided not to buy more because then I eat popcorn seven days a week and weigh two thousand pounds and my pants won't zip up and it's just not pretty when that happens.

Anyway, back to my story, Sunday afternoon popcorn is a thing. And because I have an awesome husband who gets that I have funny habits, he volunteered long ago to be the official Sunday afternoon popcorn maker. I have this theory that popcorn always tastes better when someone else makes it. It's true. Shawn says it's because he adds a little drop of love to it, which is a super cheesy joke that is probably only funny to us, but the little drop of love makes all to difference to my Sunday afternoon popcorn. :)

So to recap, Sunday afternoon popcorn, made by Shawn, in an air popper (extra drop of love included) is one of my favorite things. It's one of my very very favorite things. It reminds me of my
childhood and it's a sweet little thing that Shawn does for me. I know it's silly, but Sunday afternoon popcorn is a little moment of joy in my week. Sunday afternoon popcorn makes me happy!

And with that said, remember when I started this happy project and I said that some of the photos might be crappy? This would be one of those days. I'm capable of taking a properly lit, nicely composed photo of popcorn. But tonight I'm tired and I don't wanna. So you get a crappy cellphone photo of my half eaten bowl of Sunday afternoon popcorn. It tastes better than it looks. You'll just have to trust me. :)

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Day 9

Today we went to a church party that included lunch and an Easter egg hunt for the kids. This is one of those times that it's hard having kids spaced so far apart. Josh is totally over Easter egg hunts. He's too old. Matthew still kind of likes them, but he's too old for most of them since there is usually an age limit and he is over the limit. Plus when his friends are around I don't think he likes to admit that he would actually want to participate anyway.

So the Easter egg hunt was mostly just fun for Clarissa, but the lunch was fun for all of us! It was nice to spend some time chatting with church friends and aside from a little wind it was a beautiful day outside. I think I especially like Easter egg hunts because they're usually early in the spring when it's just starting to get nice outside again and it just feels so good to be out there and feel the sun. I love any excuse to go outside in the spring. It just feels nice.

So today I'm happy for my church friends, for sunshine and for Easter egg hunts. I love spring!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Day 8

I've now been at this happy project for a week and I've learned a few things.

First of all, I've learned that choosing to be happy every day really works. When you wake up in the morning determined to look for all the happy things in your day, it really does change your attitude. I'm paying more attention to all the little happy things in my day and I'm more grateful for them.

But second, as far as the photo project goes, I'm doing it wrong! My mistake is that I'm doing it fairly early in the day. And then later in the day something happens that makes me happy and I'm bummed that I already did my happy project for the day because  I found an even better happy moment that I wish I had done instead.

So today I'm going to blog another happy moment from yesterday, which I realize is a cheat again, but tomorrow I'm going to start doing this later in the day and avoid the problem.

I would have skipped this one, but it's relevant to this blog and I thought the people who originally came to my blog for our adoption story would enjoy it.

Yesterday afternoon Clarissa was cranky. She had preschool in the morning, which she loves, but sometimes she has so much fun that she comes home and crashes. That was the case yesterday. After lunch she was upset about something, which I'm not still clear on, and she was sitting on the floor in a puddle of tears. Her afternoon was just not going the way she wanted it to for some reason. I tried to discuss it with her, but she very dramatically could not speak, lol.

So not knowing what else to do with her I said "Clarissa, do you just need a hug?" And she nodded, wiped her sad eyes, grabbed a blanket, crawled into my lap and promptly fell asleep. Sometimes you just need a nap to reset your day.

My first thought was to move her off of me once she was asleep and have some quiet mommy time, but I didn't want to risk waking her up and restarting her dramatically sad afternoon, and second, she's kind of great to snuggle with.

So we snuggled, and it was kind of a nice, quiet afternoon. I share this because in moments like that I often think back to before we brought her home, when I just so desperately wanted her here with us and I couldn't wait until the day when I could pick her up and hug her and she would be really ours.

So quiet moments like yesterday, when she was happily asleep in my arms, I always have a moment where I'm just incredibly grateful that she's here and that she's part of our family. We waited for her for so long and anyone who has been reading my blog since the beginning will remember how hard that wait was. There were times I thought I couldn't stand it for one more minute.

Four and a half years later I'm still incredibly grateful for the whole adotiption process and for my sweet Clarissa. I'm grateful to her birth mother and to the Korean government and to everyone who was a part of the whole process. And I'm grateful that I can finally pick her up and hug her and know that she's ours forever.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Day 7-Clap along!

Today's happy post is partly brought to you by something that happened yesterday. I'm cheating again, deal with it. :)

So lately, my favorite song is Happy by Pharrell Williams. It fits my recent goal of choosing to be happy and seriously, have you heard that song?! I dare you to try to listen to it and not dance. You can't do it. It's the danciest, happiest song ever.

So last night we were trying to herd the children into bed and that song started playing on my ipad. And the next thing you know, bedtime turned into an impromptu family dance party. We laughed, we danced, we broke out the moves and it was super awesome. None of us can dance, so it was super hilarious and just an awesome, spontaneous happy family moment. I would have stopped to take a photo of it for my happy project, but sometimes you have to be IN the happy moment, not the photographer of it.

So today my happy photo is inspired by last nights dance party. The song Happy makes me happy. And it may or may not be the cause of frequent, really bad dancing, lol. :)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Day 6

We bought a new chair! We have had an old green recliner in our living room for a long time and that poor thing was on it's last leg. We actually bought it when we built our first house, which would make it almost 13 years old. It has served us well over the years. In our first house it was in our family room and I used to sit in it and read books to the boys when they were toddlers. We kept a big basket of board books right next to it just for that purpose.

Then when we moved to this house it didn't fit in our family room and we didn't really know what to do with it, so we stuck it in the corner of the formal living room and it has resided there ever since. It has still remained the reading chair for the boys, but now they read their own books in it. The formal living room always seems to be everyone's favorite place for reading because it's quiet, so many times I have found a child curled up in it, reading a book.

But that poor chair has reached the end of it's life. The leather is super worn and in the last couple of months I have noticed that it's starting to droop on one side when you sit in it. Something must have broken inside of it. So I decided that it was time to replace the beloved green reading chair.

We got some money on a rewards card from the furniture store for all the furniture that we bought for the basement in December, so we decided to use that to buy a new chair for the living room. We went last Saturday and picked one out. We decided to go for another leather recliner because I still would like it to be the place everyone curls up to read. We tested out all the recliners at the furniture store, found one that was comfortable and fit the budget and this morning they delivered it.

So goodbye, beloved old green reading chair. You have served us well.

And welcome, new brown reading chair! I hope you will keep us comfortable while we read for years to come! :) 

New furniture makes me happy! :) 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Day 5

I know these photos are probably only amusing to me. Don't worry, we only have 95 more of them to go, lol.

But seriously I'm on day 5 and it's  already helping me to be more positive. I woke up this morning and my first thought was to look for my daily happy thing. All throughout my day I have been noticing little things and thinking "oh, that could be my next happy thing!" It's good to take some time each day to recognize the little happy things in your life that sometimes we fail to appreciate as much as we should. This project is helping me appreciate those things. It's hard to have a bad day when you see so many things in your life that make you happy.

So on that note, here is today's photo. And maybe it's a weird one, but it makes me happy!

I like to listen to music in the bathroom in the mornings while I shower and get ready for my day. It wakes me up and I just enjoy music. I usually play a playlist on my iPad, but while I'm in the shower it's hard to hear it. So for my birthday this year, Shawn bought me a Bluetooth shower speaker. It hangs in the shower and wirelessly plays the music from my iPad. Now I can hear it while I shower!

That makes me happy for two reasons. First, I like music in the shower. Second, I just love geeky toys, lol. Stick Bluetooth in some random item or find a way to pair it with my iPad and I probably want it. :)

So there you go, geeky gadgets and shower music make me happy!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Day 4

Shawn's pharmacy is close enough to our house that he's able to come home for lunch every day. Getting to spend the lunch hour with him everyday definitely makes me happy!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Day 3

Birthday flowers from church friends make me happy!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Reading challenge

So part of my plan for this "last year of my 30's" thing is to make some 40 related goals. I've been thinking about this for a while. I'm not going to share all of my goals because of a few of them are just for me and blogging about them is just added pressure. But one of them is to read 40 books before I turn 40. So I've updated the Goodreads goal on the right hand side of my blog. I'll going to try to do better about keeping my Goodreads list updated.  It only goes by calendar year though, so it won't be totally accurate. I'm not worried abut getting it done before December, I'm extending it until my birthday next April. If I find a better widget that let's me do custom dates, I'll update it.

Reading is something that makes me happy and something that makes me ME and it's something I don't take enough time for these days. I have good intentions, I just don't get it done. I've made reading goals in the past and abandoned them because I got busy, or just haven't been good abut keeping track, but I'm trying again.

This year is about goal setting and giving some of my abandoned goals another try. It's my chance to prove to myself that I can follow through and head into my 40's with ME back. I'm bringing back the things that once made me happy that life has gotten in the way of and I'm giving them another try. Have I tried and failed at this before? Yes. It's not going to stop me from trying again. I lack follow though sometimes. It's something I'm working on changing. Will I fail to follow through on improving my follow through? I hope not! :)

And on that note, here is something else I'm following through on. Day two of my 100 happy days. I will admit that I'm only on day two of this thing and I'm cheating just a bit. This photo was actually taken the day before yesterday. I'm not going to make it a habit to include photos in this project that weren't taken on the correct day, but I decided when we took this that I would make a one time exception for this one, because it's something that makes me happy and I knew I wasn't starting my 100 day challenge until the next day.

These are my two closest friends. I'm an introvert and I don't have a huge social circle and these two women stick with me even when I'm happily in my own little world in my house and not the most social person ever. But occasionally they do manage to drag me out and we always have an awesome time. Over the past couple of months we have been watching Heirs together and the night before my birthday we finally watched the finale. This photo was taken late at night after we had just watched the finale in our jammies while eating ice cream and cheesecake. So we don't look super glamorous, but having friends you can sit on the couch and eat cheesecake in your jammies with at midnight is an awesome thing, and that is why I wanted to make sure to include this photo in my 100 happy days. Friends makes me happy!

Friday, April 4, 2014


Well the day has arrived. Today I begin the last year of my 30's. I've been thinking about this a lot lately, so I'm actually really excited about my birthday this year. I have plans for this year. I have things I want to accomplish before I turn 40 and it's time to get to work. I know I know, I have big plans a lot and sometimes they're successful and sometimes not, lol. But lately this whole "last year of my 30's" thing" is making me feel an urgency to make some changes in my life and I'm ready to do the work. I'm starting back up with MyFitnessPal, if anyone wants to be my friend there. It worked well for me last time, so I'm excited to try it again. I'm starting back up at the gym soon too, as soon as I can work out a reasonable schedule to go. That may have to wait a couple of months, but I'll get there. I've made some mini goals and some rewards for myself when I meet those goals.

Another thing I'm doing is participating in the 100 days do happy challenge. You may have seen it being passed around on Facebook. You can find all the info here: Basically, for 100 days in a row you are supposed to take a photo of something each day that makes you happy. It doesn't have to be big, just a snapshot of your favorite breakfast or a sunny day or a book you're reading, or whatever. The purpose is to take the time to be happy and to be aware of the happy moments in your life. I love that idea.

I haven't decided yet where, or if, I will be posting the photos. I may post them here every day and I may not. I may share a weeks worth all at once each week, or I may only share them every now and then. Or maybe I'll do it just for me and not share them at all. I haven't decided, but I'm doing it. So if random photos are posted to my blog daily or weekly or whatever I end up doing for the next 100 days, that's what that's all about. They may not be great photos. If I have to get my good camera out and compose a good photo every day, it might not get done. So they might be quick cellphone shots. The subject is more important than the quality in this case.

Anyway, I've been planning to start on my birthday so today is day one, and in honor of day one, I will share my first photo.

This photo makes me happy for several reasons. First of all, it makes me realize how much I appreciate Shawn, who always makes a big fuss on my birthday and special orders my favorite cake for me days in advance. Shawn makes me happy. Second, it makes me grateful for life and that God has allowed me to live on the Earth for another year. I'm happy to be alive and to be celebrating another birthday. Third, it's a chocolate cake, and chocolate cake makes me happy! TOO happy, which is why I'm headed back to the gym,  lol. I've got to work off some of my chocolate cake happiness. :) 

So there you go, day one. Today, as I celebrate one more year on the earth, I choose to be happy. :) 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Meeting Matthew's idol

Matthew is my book loving kid. He's the kid I bond with over new book series and trips to the bookstore. I love to watch him devour a book with the same excitement I feel when I have a new book to read. He's my kid who will stay up way past his bedtime because he has just one more chapter (or three) that he needs to finish and can't stand to put the book down. And I lecture him about how he can't stay up late on school nights but inside I totally get his excitement.

These days Matthew's favorite author is Brandon Mull. He wrote the Fablehaven series, which Matthew read a while back, and he has also written a series called The Beyonders that Matthew just went crazy for, and he just came out with the first book in a new series that Matthew read pretty much the first day it was released. He talks about Brandon Mull all the time. We have had many conversations where he tells me all the reasons why Brandon Mull is the best author ever.

So after one of those conversations a few weeks ago, we decided to look up Brandon Mulls website together. And on that website was a list of tour dates. And on that list was the Barnes and Noble in our town. And Matthew freaked out. The chance to meet Brandon Mull in person? Better than Disneyland.

So he has been waiting weeks for the big day to arrive. And that day was today. The event was at 6:00 this evening but I knew it was going to be packed and I knew how much Matthew really wanted to be front and center to see him speak, so Josh and I picked him up at the bus stop after school and we got to the bookstore at 4:30 to get a good seat.

When you show up an hour and a half early for an author meet and greet at Barnes and Noble, you end up bonding with a group of super ultra book nerds who also showed up an hour and a half early for an author meet and greet. There were the three of us, a middle school special ed teacher, a young guy who apparently knows everything there is to know about a sci-fi novels and will tell you whether you ask or not, and a hipster looking girl who was supposed to meet someone there but they didn't show so she sat next to the sci-fi guy and I totally think they should go out, because, come on, they both showed up an hour and a half early for an author meet and greet at the bookstore. This is who we bonded with in the front row for the hour and a half before the event started. I don't know, but I'm pretty sure me and the special ed teacher are best friends now.

So we had good seats, which was great, because by 6:00 it was a madhouse. So Brandon Mull arrived and there was another author with him, who writes the same genre, but only has two books out. His name escapes me. Chad something. I bought Matthew his first book though so he could get it signed in case he becomes the next big thing, lol. (Edit: I looked it up. His name is Chad Morris. He's writing the Cragbridge Hall series. He was a cool guy and his books look interesting and I decided I felt bad calling him Chad something. Check out his books, they look good!)

They both spoke for a short time and then took questions and then signed books. They were really funny and interesting to listen to.

They did not make it very well known ahead of time, but they've been handing out tickets for your place in line at the book signing. You get a number and that's your place in line. First come, first serve. I got smart and called the book store a week ago and found that out and picked up a ticket in advance so we had a low number and good place in line. Most people didn't realize that there were tickets until tonight and it was a looong line.

So we had front row seats for the discussion and a good place in line for the signing and we were in and out in a reasonable amount of time. I love it when that happens. I would not have wanted to be at the end of that line.

Seeing the event through Matthew's eyes was really fun. He was a little star struck and just SO excited! He took some of his books from home to get signed and he was really excited to get to talk to Brandon Mull for a minute. He gushed over his books like a true superfan. :) It was a really fun evening and I'm glad we got to do it.

Also, I feel like me and my new book nerd best friends need to get together for a reunion next year or something. Sci-fi guy and hipster girl should invite me to their wedding, at least. :)