Wednesday, February 29, 2012

#244: Leap Years

Reason to Be Happy #244:

What are you going to do with your extra day?

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

#243: French Press Coffee

Reason to Be Happy #243:
French Press Coffee

Sure it's more work, but it's so, so worth the extra effort.

Monday, February 27, 2012

#242: Hours Spent in a Book Store

Reason to Be Happy #242:
Hours Spent in a Book Store

Sunday, February 26, 2012

#241: The Academy Awards

Reason to Be Happy #241:

You may have noticed that I love the movies. I love the movies. I can't imagine life without the movies. The Academy Awards are like my Super Bowl. I've watched them since I was a little kid, from the first arrivals on the red carpet to the very very last farewell from the host. Sure the Oscars can be silly, political, but I don't care. I'm a sucker for every single bit of it. I love it best when something wild happens, like the streaker, or Jack Palance doing the one-armed push ups. Sometimes it's mind-numbingly dull, it's always way too long, but I never miss it. Billy Crystal has been, hands down, my favorite host so far, so I'm thrilled he'll be back this year.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

#240: Seeing Two Movies in One Day

Reason to Be Happy #240:
Seeing Two Movies in One Day

Have I mentioned that I love the movies? My record is three in one day. That's…excessive. But two is a real treat.

Friday, February 24, 2012

#239: Root Beer Floats

Reason to Be Happy #239:

Thursday, February 23, 2012

#238: Girl Scout Cookies

Reason to Be Happy #238:

It's that time...bring on the Thin Mints!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

#237: Holding a Warm Cup of Tea on a Chilly Morning

Reason to Be Happy #237:
Holding a Warm Cup of Tea on a Chilly Morning

(This Reason to Be Happy was listed by Hannah Noel Smith in a book giveaway on my Facebook Fan Site. Thanks, Hannah!)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

#236: The Quiet in the Air after a Snowfall

Reason to Be Happy #236:
That Muffled Quiet in the Air After a Snowfall

These photos are on Sterling Avenue in Park Slope, Brooklyn, which I was lucky enough to call home for a brief, magical time. That snowstorm was so gorgeous. (This Reason to Be Happy was listed by Allison Hunt Lehman in a book giveaway on my Facebook Fan Site. Thanks, Allison!)

Monday, February 20, 2012

#235: Cracking the Shell on Top of a Creme Brulee

Reason to Be Happy #235:
Cracking the Shell on Top of a Creme Brulee

That first whack through the burnt shell with the spoon—such a satisfying feeling!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

#234: Rubbing Velvet the Wrong Way

Reason to Be Happy #234:
Rubbing Velvet the Wrong Way

Ahh. A lovely little tactile pleasure...

Saturday, February 18, 2012

#233: Ice Skating

Reason to Be Happy #233:
Ice Skating

I'm no good at it, but it sure is fun!

Friday, February 17, 2012

#232: Floating on your back in the Mediterranean Sea

Reason to Be Happy #232:
Floating on Your Back in the Mediterranean Sea...gazing up at the cliff cut village of Positano
, Italy

This is a reason to be happy while it's happening...or while remembering it on a frigid February day in Ohio.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

#231: SNOW DAYS!

Reason to Be Happy #231:

I've been hanging on to this one, hoping to post it the morning after a major winter storm...but I'm beginning to despair we're never going to have one! I feel for the school age young people of the Miami Valley—and I feel even more for their teachers! Because as much I enjoyed those bonus days, that abundance of sweet "found" time as a kid, trust me—I enjoyed them 100 times more as a teacher! I'm keeping fingers crossed that some morning soon, my Morning Edition broadcast will be interrupted by a long list of school gotta get at least one every school year!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

#230: Reading With a Cat on Your Lap

Reason to Be Happy #230:
Reading With a Cat on Your Lap

I experience this nearly every day, and it never fails to make me happy. It is, however, a difficult thing to photograph (happening to your yourself, anyway). So this girl and cat on a plaid couch will have to do. I found them on the internet. My Joey cat gets right up on me, and I rest the book on his back. He's a lovely desk.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

#229: Shoveling Your Neighbor's Sidewalk

Reason to Be Happy #229:
Shoveling the Snow From Your Neighbor's Walk Before They Can Do it Themselves

It just makes ya feel good. You feel mischievous while you're doing it. Especially if the neighbor is older, or sick, or has been distracted by a new baby or a crisis in the family, or, heck, just because. It's a small thing. It doesn't take long. But it's a lovely kindness and it makes me happy whenever I get away with it (especially when no one sees me, so they don't feel obligated to thank me).

Monday, February 13, 2012

#228: Snow Ball Fights!

Reason to Be Happy #228:

Sunday, February 12, 2012

#227: Brunch

Reason to Be Happy #227:

Breakfast is my favorite meal, and my very favorite meal to eat out. I adore a good, good brunch. When I lived in Brooklyn, I adored Miriam's and Applewood's brunch menus with all my heart and soul. Here in Dayton, my devotion most belongs to Meadowlark. Their huevos rancheros (pictured) is out of this world. But their shrimp and grits is a religious experience. I agonize over which to order. Guess I'll have to go more often to keep it even...

Saturday, February 11, 2012

#226: Peanut Butter and Chocolate-Chip Pancakes

Reason to Be Happy #226:
Peanut Butter and Chocolate-Chip Pancakes

Friday, February 10, 2012

#225: Dorky, Corny Riddles

Reason to Be Happy #225:
Dorky, Corny Riddles

You know the kind—if someone like your dad or a teacher tells them, you groan and roll your eyes, but you can't help but smile, too? Riddles are the best. Like this, stolen shamelessly from my friend Heather's Facebook:

Q: What did the Pink Panther say when he stepped on the ant?

A: Deadant. Deadant. Deadant deadant deadant deadant deadaaaaant. Deadant deadant.

She then wrote: "Reply with riddle awsomeness, please." Here's how people replied:

Q: Why does Snoop Dogg carry an umbrella?

A: Fo' Drizzle!
* * *

Q: Did you hear the one about the optometrist's daughter who fell in to the vat?

A: She made a spectacle of herself.

* * *

Q: What did one keyboard say to the other keyboard?

A: Sorry, you're not my type.

* * *

Q: Why is 6 afraid of 7?

A: Because 7 8 9

* * *

Q: Why was the little strawberry so worried?

A: His mom was in a jam.

Go ahead. Add your own! We can all use a clean, harmless laugh on a Friday, right?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

#224: Groovy Handknitted Mittens

Reason to Be Happy #224:
Groovy Handknitted Mittens

A lovely gift from a talented friend!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

#223: Looking at Seed Catalogs on a Gray, Snowy February Day

Reason to Be Happy #223:
Looking at Seed Catalogs on a Gray, Snowy February Day

Or, as I like to call it—garden porn.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

#222: Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams

Reason to Be Happy #222:
Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams

Ice cream flavors such as:
Bangkok Peanut, Brambleberry Crisp, Lime Cardamom

Based in Columbus, Ohio, Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams are my favorite ice creams in the world. No lie. You gotta love it when Jeni herself, (the brilliant Jeni Britton Bauer) writes on their website:
"We create ice creams we fall madly in love with, that we want to bathe in, that make us see million-year-old stars. We devour it out of Mason jars, coffee mugs—whatever we can get our hands on. Handmade American ice cream = Bliss with a big B."
Goat Cheese with Cognac Figs
Riesling Poached Pear Sorbet
Queen City Cayenne
Wildberry Lavender
and my personal favorite—Salty Caramel
Jeni signs the website with "To more pleasures." Amen.
Oh, and they deliver to your home...just sayin'...

Monday, February 6, 2012

#221: Latte Art

Reason to Be Happy #221:
Latte Art

I love when the barista makes beautiful or funny pictures with the frothed milk. It adds a little something special to the day.
I am also happy to work in an office that has a milk frother. I adore the milk frother. I am working on my own latte art...but none of these masterpieces pictured here are mine. Stay tuned...

Sunday, February 5, 2012

#220: The Puppy Bowl

Reason to Be Happy #220:
The Puppy Bowl!

Puppy Bowl airs on Animal Planet on Super Bowl Sunday. Prepare to be blinded by the cuteness.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

#219: Fingerpainting

Reason to Be Happy #219:
Finger Painting

It's even more fun as an adult than it was as a kid. Finger paints feel so good. There's something so therapeutic and soothing about sliding your hands around in those slippery paints! Try it. It's like meditation!

Friday, February 3, 2012

#218: The smell of leather

Reason to Be Happy #218:
The smell of leather

A tack room at a horse farm is heaven for people who love the aroma of leather.
All those saddles, bridles, girths, and boots all stored in a small, enclosed space...pretty heady stuff. And freshly saddle-soaped leather is an especially exquisite scent. As is leather in the sun...

Thursday, February 2, 2012

#217: The feel of cashmere on your skin

Reason to Be Happy #217:
The feel of cashmere against your skin

Everyone deserves at least one clothing item made of cashmere. It feels so lovely and luxurious. Did you know that cashmere is made from the throat and belly fur of a rare goat species called Kashmir goats? You know how I feel about goats—this only makes me love cashmere more.