Friday, July 1, 2011

Reason to Be Happy #1

Back when I taught middle school, there was a day when every school in the area was closed except for mine. The students who managed to get there were grumpy and felt cheated. The teachers were exasperated as plans couldn’t go forward with classes of only 3 or 4 students present. By the third class of complaining, sullen students, I said, “C’mon, you guys. We’re here. We may as well be happy.” A student said, “Give me one reason to be happy.” And so, the project Reasons to Be Happy was born on the fly. Students wrote lists of reasons we should happy—random, specific things (both big and small) that make life the joyful, interesting, fascinating journey it is. Needless to say, “snow days” topped the list for most students that day. You should try it. It’s a mood lifter.

Today begins my goal to list a reason to be happy every day for at least one year.

Reason to Be Happy #1: GOATS

Among my favorite animals, goats are smart, mischievous, and funny. They give us the words caprice, capricious, and caper. I now have written three novels that contain goats as central characters (two unpublished as of this date, but one, Reasons to Be Happy, coming out this October!). Oh, and I'm a Capricorn. Coincidence?


  1. Hummingbirds. Definitely hummingbirds. Especially the one that hovers in front of my the overflow of my little backyard waterfall, apparently drinking (or maybe admiring his reflection?)

  2. Ahh...yes. Hummingbirds are already on my list. :-)

  3. You wrote about a goat in your most recent book didn't you (I've read them all)? They are great fun. Today my reason? Bug Spray.

  4. Yes, the goat Muriel in The Blessings of the Animals was actually based on the goat pictured above. That's Humphrey. He's my fella! Thanks SO much for reading all the books! You made my day!

    1. Loved Muriel! As I've said to you and a lot of other people, The Blessings of the Animals is one of my favorite books. The ending is what I like to read on Christmas Eve. For me it's perfect.

  5. Goats are great! I love Alligators, which are maligned and misunderstood. So few people see their true saurian beauty.