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My Happy List

My Happy List

Beginning with the disclaimer that it is the many amazing people (some of whom are pictured below) who make my life truly happy, it is also appropriate to recognize some of the things that are brightening my winter (especially in the midst of Yakima’s current weather inversion–many days of grey, cloudy skies and icicle inspired temperatures).


Raise your large, warm mug of Theraflu to the following:

Seahawks–I have to begin with honesty:  the first complete game I watched this season was the NFC Championship.  You would think this would mean I was a quiet observer, sitting calmly in my parents’ oversize chair, more interested in the dogs in a blanket on my plate than the game.  Not so.  Just ask my daughter.  Sophie was unfortunate enough to be sitting next to her closet-competetive mother throughout the game.  I loved every minute.  At one point, near the end, she looked at me and said:  “You are louder than Uncle John and Grandpa combined.”  If you have met John or my dad, or have any kind of imagination, you can conclude that I was fantastically loud. It was SO FUN!!

Football has never been my favorite sport to watch, but this season may have changed my mind.  More than that, I have loved the sense of camaraderie that has extended into our schools, our local businesses, our social media, our families.  How often are the majority of people in a city or region focused together on good news?  It seems rare indeed and something to celebrate.  Today I am excited to join the ranks of LOUD Hawks fans everywhere.  I’M IN!

Books that have captured my interest:

  • Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson–Yes, this book is big and yes it is long.  It is also intriguing and mind blowing.  Nearly every page offers some new, complex insight into the life and mind of Steve Jobs.  Well worth the time investment.
  • DK’s Beginner’s Photography Guide–Though I am impatient about “getting to know” all the cool things about my camera, I am finally committed.  Up to this point, I’ve just wanted to take the damn photos.  Now, I’m willing to invest a little time in improving and the DK guide is the perfect mentor.  Lots of illustrations and quick tips.

TV that I love:  Parks & Recreation, Downton Abbey & Sherlock Holmes.  I don’t know how I’ve gone so many years without really watching P & R.  Now I am a devoted convert.  While first seeming mostly goofy, I quickly understood that Pawnee, Indiana Parks and Rec Director Leslie Knope (played by the supreme Amy Poehler) is one of the most lovable and inspiring characters in sitcom history.  This is a woman who loves her city, loves her job and pours her time and passion into making things better for the people in Pawnee.  And yes, she is also wonderfully goofy and flawed, along with the rest of the phenomenal cast, which makes the show equally hysterical and uplifting.  At work I find myself asking:  What would Leslie do? 

Downton Abbey really needs no recommendation from a mere mortal such as myself, but I will say that one of my favorite things about this series is the undercurrent of humor that many of the characters have perfected.  It buffers the tragedies that are woven throughout the script and adds a complexity to the characters.  While at first Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham, seems only harsh and stringent, you quickly discover that she is often perceptive, can be counted on to point out the ridiculous and is not without compassion.

And Sherlock Holmes pulls several of my favorite things into a single show:  classic British mysteries (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle!!), modern day London and Martin Freeman :).  Oh, and Benedict Cumberbatch playing Sherlock . . . I can’t emphasize how perfectly lovely that is.

New jewelry–Sophie, like so many children across America, was gifted with a rubber band Rainbow Loom for her birthday and then again for Christmas.  She has made me tons of lovely, rubber-bandy jewelry and I love it.  Colorful and flexible, they do make me happy. I am currently sporting a black & white speckled ring and a rosette bracelet.  I also have a pen rest and turtle charm on my desk at work.

rainbow loom bracelets rainbow loom rings

Future Vacation–this is pure fantasy, but it is helping in the midst of the current no-sun blight of winter.  Doug found himself in Cancun a few weeks ago.  I won’t go into the details of this happened, and how I ended up staying behind, but will focus on the promise:  Doug came back committed to taking me on a warm, relaxing vacation next winter.  Though this is in the pipe dream stage at this point, I don’t care.  I am going to start a Pinterest board and envision all of this future, white beach goodness:

white beach Image courtesy of





  1. I’m with ya sister! I’ve been struggling with the winter blues and dreaming of sun and sand.

    I’m excited to hear about the photography book. Hopefully it can help me too.

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