Hope

Hope is a dream. It is quiet.

It begins as a whisper in the dead of night in the cold darkness of winter.

Hope is the pale sun in the distance just beyond your fingertips.

It is nourished by the heart and it’s loved by the soul.

Hope never gives up.

Hope is a window to bright sunny vistas

And clear blue horizons.

Hope is a rock.

It is a port in the storm. It is steady and true.

Hope knows the storm cannot last forever.

 

Hope is alive and it is magic.

It is all-powerful and nothing can be accomplished without it.

Hope keeps the home fires burning and hope shows the way.

It fights off the darkness.

Hope is the light.

Hope is essential for life to thrive.

It can make your wildest dreams come true.

Hope starts with a spark in the dark

but that can set fire to flame.

It all begins with you.

small things list

They say it is the small things that really matter.  These tiny joys in life that make it all the worthwhile. They also say that appreciation is a gift and that happiness lies more in one’s attitude than in one’s present circumstance.

In need of a dose of happiness myself I have decided to compose a list. A list of small things that make me happy. (I am happier already, just thinking about it) I’d like to share this list with you because I believe happiness is contagious and I like to spread it around.

Of course, this is my list.  Your list, if you decided to make one (which I wholeheartedly suggest) would be quite different I’m sure, but I set this as an example.

Small Things List

*Birdsong in the morning*love in the afternoon*dark chocolate*green*slack key guitar*ocean waves*sunshine*jasmine tea*the impressionists*dancing in the kitchen*singing in the shower*painting my toenails*bee admiring*squirrel watching*beach combing*word puzzles*cats*gardening*blog writing*walking in the rain*taking that perfect shot*reading a book*geekdom*digging in the dirt*playing pool*laughing at myself*the tiny little daisies in the front lawn*running up the stairs*the birds and the bees*the forests with the trees*vivid sunsets*funny movies*bacon*dressing up for halloween*butterflies*ylang ylang*long chats over coffee*watching the clouds roll by**purple shoelaces*the yellow teapot*the blues*chai lattes with extra whipped milk*laughing*looking up at the sky*poetry*music*Dr. Suess*oregon strawberries*star-gazing*autumn leaves* spring trees*going barefoot in the summertime*silence*reading good blogs*stopping and smelling the roses*the perfect kiss*romance*ice cream*rainbows*science*wordplay*humorous banter*intelligent conversation*the eyes of a child*the innocence of youth*the wisdom of age*irony*sleeping in late*dinner parties*picnics*late night talks over candlelight*learning something new*warm summer evenings*A job well done*splashing in puddles*holding hands*talking to the animals*hiking in the forest*walking in the park*ladybugs*pygmy marmosets*cherry pie*sweet peas*rosemary*springtime*moonlight*music*fuzzy socks*driveway moments with NPR*naps*big red balloons*popcorn with lots of butter*blue skies*a wink and a smile*dewdrops*dragonflies*coloring outside the lines*3 little birds*blowing bubbles*the sound of crickets in my backyard*glitter*long lists of happy things*

Just writing this made me happy!

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Strawberryindigo.

“Precisely the least, the softest, lightest, a lizard’s rustling, a breath, a breeze, a moment’s glance– it is little that makes the best happiness”

**Friedrich Nietzsche**

Strawberryindigo: The beginning

Out of the Shadows part two.

When I started this blog back in August of last year I had no idea what a rich community of people I would be meeting and getting to know through blogs and communications. I have found myself looking forward to chatting it up with some of my newly found blog buddies. Many of you have shared of yourself. Some of you quite a lot. I have found your stories to be funny and creative, inspiring and insightful, and sometimes quite sad but always hopeful. I have seen myself in some of your words and I have been bettered by them.

I have also been inspired by you all to share something of myself.

What follows is a post I did way back last September. At the time I think I really needed to write it but I wasn’t ready to share with anyone. Soon after I posted, I buried this deep in a sea of bad navigation and a flurry of others. I don’t think anyone saw it.  At the time I was relieved. Now I have reconsidered.

Those who know me by my blog alias; Strawberryindigo, may be surprised by the following post and then again maybe not, but for those who know me by Nancy, the following may explain much……

Out of the shadows

life’s little pleasures

 Right now

This very moment. This is just one out of a seemingly endless round of moments that make up your life.  How you fill these segments in time becomes your story.

It can be difficult sometimes to weed out the minutiae and  it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day trivialities and miss what is truly important.  This often happens with me.  Life in this modern world can get stressful especially during “interesting” times like these.

During my recent “bout of wicked overdoneness” I was forced to slow down.  This allowed me to catch my breath and really see what was truly going on.  I realised that little by little I was missing the small things.  Life’s little pleasures that I enjoyed so much.   I  didn’t notice they were disappearing until they were gone.

 I have been trying to appreciate the small things whenever and wherever I can find them. Sometimes it’s not easy, I’m a sensitive person and I have my share of bad news and bad days.   I find that it is after one of these bad days that I need  life’s little pleasures all the more.

About three weeks ago I made a plan of action. A basic outline of activities that I would try to incorporate into my daily life. These are very simple things.  They appeal to me personally. I have taken on each one of them.  Some are obviously easier than others. I am still working on the last one.

Life’s little pleasures plan of action master list.

Greet the day: Soon after waking I will greet the day by going out to the back porch for a breath of fresh morning air and a much-needed intake of some urban  nature in the backyard. 

Stretch:  I will stretch my body and my mind. I will explore new horizons and grow.

Walk:  I will walk, to move my body,no matter the weather. To get out into the community and out into the world. I will seek out natural areas.  I will go off the beaten path. I will explore.

Stop:  I will stop and notice the simple beauty that surrounds me everyday.  A bird, the sky. A smile from a child, the laugh of a loved one.  I will take it all in and try to find the goodness in everything I see.

Dance:  And sing and let it all out. I will embrace my inner child and go with those eccentric urges and just have fun.

Let go I will learn to let go of that which I cannot control and just simply Enjoy Life as it comes.

Wishing You an Amazing Day! 

Strawberryindigo.

Instant Happiness

25 ways to improve your mood, enliven your spirits and increase your happiness

  1. Exercise. It doesn’t matter how, just move your body. Get your heart pumping. 

  2. Laugh.  Watch a funny movie.  Go to a local comedy show. Tell a joke. Or just laugh at life’s little surprises.

  3. Talk. Open the floodgates and let it all out.

  4. Play. Let out your inner child. Don’t worry about looking foolish. Swing on the swings. Splash in rain puddles. Lie in the grass and watch the clouds roll by. Allow yourself to have fun. You deserve it.

  5. Color. Embrace color.  Colors are widely known to influence your mood. Surround yourself with happy bright colors.

  6. Music.  Listen to upbeat happy music with positive messages.

  7. Get outside. Natural settings enhance your mood. Spend time appreciating nature, even if it’s just a walk in the park.  

  8. Novelty.  Do something different.  Anything positive as long as it is out of your normal routine.

  9. Aromatherapy. Take advantage of uplifting scents such as basil, bergamot, lemon, Clary sage, rose, rosemary and sandalwood.

  10. Smile.

  11. Appreciate.  Count your blessings, literally.  Make a list of all the good aspects in your life. You may be surprised.

  12. Do a kindness for someone. It feels great. a win win situation for everyone.

  13. Sing. Sing along to your favorite song. Any song will do. Be loud and proud.

  14. Challenge yourself.  Go out of your comfort zone.  Whether it is climbing a mountain, learning a language or just saying “Hello” to the mail carrier.

  15. Friends. Look up an old friend. Make a new one. Friends are like gold.

  16. Vacation.  Play tourist in your own town.  Visit the local attractions, take pictures.

  17. Dance. Wherever, whenever you can.  

  18. Garden. Dig in the dirt. Plant a tree. Pot up a tomato plant. No space is too small. Even a few herbs on the windowsill can lift one’s mood.

  19. Animals.  Pet your pet and if you don’t have one consider getting one.  Maybe befriend a neighborhood cat or visit the animals in the zoo.

  20. Touch.  Reach out and touch someone. Give a hug.  Get a hug. Human contact is essential to happiness.

  21. Create.  Make something, anything counts. You are only limited by your own imagination.

  22. Listen. Stop. Be still and just listen for 5 minutes. Notice all the sounds you hear and try to identify each one.

  23. Eat. Healthy food is happy food.

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  24. Sleep. Take a nap.  Linger in bed on the weekends a little longer. Sleep can do wonders.

  25. Nothing. Learn the art of nothingness. Allow yourself this luxury once in a while. 

There are really a million actions one can take for an excellent dose of instant happiness.  These scant 25 are only a beginning….what I think is of real importance here is a person’s attitude.  Happiness is a state of mind, after all.

“When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.”

**Helen Keller**

What do you do for a dose of Instant happiness.  Let me know and we can add it to the list.

Have a happy day!

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Strawberryindigo.