Happiness Highlights: Making the Most of It

Monday, April 30th, 2012

Every Monday, I start my week by highlighting what made me happy from the previous week, because I believe we multiply what we focus on, and that gratitude is the first step in learning how to be happier.

After whining away my blessings last week, I decided to make a conscious effort to appreciate the time we have here in Iowa. We will be staying here with Jared’s parents until sometime this summer, which gives us a lot of time with family and friends that we wouldn’t normally have. I don’t want to spend all my time here stressing about what comes next, only to cry when it’s time to say goodbye again.

I am determined to make the most of this time. To soak it up. To revel in the now so that when later comes, I have no regrets about time wasted.

This week we celebrated my mother-in-law’s birthday with family dinner and a store-bought cake.

I went for walks with my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law.

The three of us took three little girls –Emma and her two cousins– for pedicures. On the way home, I taught the girls about acting and we practiced making faces to match our feelings. I laughed until my own face hurt.

I made lunch plans with Erin, who then climbed into bed with me when I was too stressed out to face the world. She reminded me that my worst case scenarios weren’t all that bad and made me relax, smile, and come out from under the covers.

We went to a bachelorette party together later in the week, and I had such a good time catching up with women I rarely see but always enjoy.

I had dinner with my own mother, who is just days away from earning her graduate degree and having something resembling a life again. But she made time for us now.

Yesterday I took her to see her grandson. It was the first time she has seen him in four months.

He called her Nana for the first time.

She cried. I cried. He looked at us like we were nuts.

And then he called me grandma.

I am so, so lucky to have these moments with these people.

What were the highlights of your week?

  1. Dawn says:

    I love your outlook, Britt. I wish I could do what you’re attempting, but I ALWAYS get bogged down – or feel like I can’t get through the haze to focus on ANYTHING. But this week, we celebrated my baby girl’s 9th birthday, and that made me happy. I enjoyed spoiling her and watching her celebrate and stretch her legs into her 9 year old self. She’s beautiful, inside and out, and it’s such an experience to see what she’s growing into.

    • Miss Britt says:

      Oh, Dawn. I get it, I really do. I get obsessed with details and planning. Looking towards the future too much is a bad habit of mine.

      I’ve found the weekly (and nightly if I can remember it) gratitude practice REALLY helps me to see through the haze.

    • Miss Britt says:

      Amen. (By the way – enjoy your time in Kissimmee – had a BLAST with that promotion a couple summers ago.)

  2. daniel says:

    Yesterday was the Pinewood Derby. My son had such an improvement over last year. The look on his face after the first heat was priceless. During baseball practice he hit the ball. This too was a major improvement over last year. It was a big week for him, and for that I am thankful and happy.
    daniel’s most recent post: Phamily Foto Phriday 4-27-12

  3. Ally Bean says:

    I like the photo of the polka dotted toes! If that doesn’t bring happiness into my day, I don’t know what will.

    Ditto what Dawn said. I get so bogged down anymore. I used to be much more light-hearted, but within the last few years the details have just about done me in. Thanks for a post that reminds me to relax & enjoy.
    Ally Bean’s most recent post: This & That

    • Miss Britt says:

      Aren’t they cute? That’s my youngest niece. She is a riot and a half, I tell you.

  4. Love it. Sounds like a beautiful week. Family is so important and it is wonderful you are getting to have this time while you figure out what comes next. It really is about the journey not the destination.
    Corey Feldman’s most recent post: Egret and Sam Have Breakfast

    • Miss Britt says:

      It has been a MONTH now that we’ve been here, and the time has just flown by with all this family soaking. Awesome stuff.

  5. the muskrat says:

    I had 4 cases settled, meaning we made some much needed money! So that maybe I can get the mold in our house remediated, so I’m not sick every day.
    the muskrat’s most recent post: a muskrat in maryland!

    • Miss Britt says:

      Good news!

      Why does even your good news sound cynical and depressing? Is this like a thing you’re cultivating now? :-P

  6. lauren says:

    Hang in there. Your title was reminded of my most very favorite quote which is, in times of uncertainty, more like a mantra. Do you know it ?

    “I wanted a perfect ending. Now I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next.

    Delicious Ambiguity.”
    ― Gilda Radner

    • Miss Britt says:

      Ooh. That quote is a good one AND a tough one to swallow. I LIKE the idea of happy endings.

      I blame my mom for that one.

  7. i know this is supposed to be all about you or all about me, but i gotta go a different direction…YOUR MOM GRADUATES IN A FEW DAYS?!??!?!! SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!
    hello haha narf’s most recent post: Couldn’t Post This on the First

  8. Darla says:

    I am so happy your mom got to see her grandson.

  9. Amanda says:

    It looks like you had a really good week. And what a cutie that little boy is in those hats! Here are my “happiness highlights”: http://ajigreer.blogspot.ca/2012/04/happy-friday_27.html
    Amanda’s most recent post: hello, monday!

  10. Lisa says:

    I’m soaking up the next 2 weeks with my husband because he leaves for at least 3 months on a remote project on the 15th.

    In Maui.

    Fucker.

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