Mighty Life List
Aug 23 2012

180 Things to Be Happy About

180 Things to Be Happy About | Mighty Girl

Our Mighty Happy Giveaway Contest generated so many awesome and uplifting responses, it seemed unfair to highlight only the winners. Here, then, are 180 happy things, suggested by you guys. They made me happy, too.

1. The sound of my children making each other laugh. (Sabrina)

2. Being the first person to wake up on a weekend and sitting on the couch reading, waiting for the day to start. (Catherine)

3. Long conversations with my sister. (Jasmine)

4. Photo booths. (Shannon)

5. When someone likes something I’m wearing. (Kristin)

6. Discovering a beautiful thing in an unexpected place in an unexpected moment. (Amy)

7. Seeing old friends and realizing only after the rush of catching up that it’s like no time has passed and I love them just as much as ever. (Amy)

8. The moments when I realize there’s nowhere I’d rather be than where I am right then. (Samantha)

9. Hugs from a wet-from-the-pool four-year-old. (Cass)

10. Tears — sometimes the other side of them bring the best kind of happy (Cass)

11. The sparkle in my son’s eye when he’s telling a funny story. (Corri)

12. Sitting by a lake under the stars. (Meg)

13. The smell and feel of old books as I’m browsing my local book store. (Kami)

14. The feeling you get when in the ocean, just bouncing along with gentle waves. (Joanne)

15. The movie theater in town that plays independent films and serves beer. (Elizabeth)

16. Coming home from a trip. (Jana)

17. Jumping with the children on the trampoline we’ve got in the garden. (Mette)

18. The smell of the earth when it first starts to rain. (Amanda)

19. Feeding my friends food that I’ve cooked. (Vivian)

20. Being a traveler totally anonymous in a foreign country. (Morgan)

21. The feel of very old, somewhat transparent vintage t-shirts. (Abby)

22. Kneading bread dough. (Heather)

23. Music playing in the background. (Allisone)

24. Being barefoot in the kitchen, sipping wine, and cooking dinner. (Ginny)

25. Getting into a made bed at night. (Samantha)

26. Completing challenging tasks. That makes me feel bullet-proof! (Samantha)

27. Eating the first cookie, slice of bread, etc. that I pull out of the oven. (Hanna)

28. Songs that tell a story. (Karen)

29. In the moment when you realize an inside joke has been created. (Ginny)

30. Watching an Oklahoma sunset. (Penny)

31. When my husband and I suddenly catch each other’s eyes – amidst laundry, tired children, mess and long lists of to dos – smile, and kiss. (Mette)

32. When I come across something in my late father’s handwriting. (Tami)

33. Sharing dessert. (Tami)

34. Seeing my husband’s face light up just as much as the baby’s when they see each other. (Nestra)

35. That my daughter has to give the dog a kiss goodnight and the dog sleeps in front of her door. (Alicia)

36. When my husband gets into bed way later than me and inadvertently wakes me up by cuddling. (Hope)

37. The questions my five-year-old asks friendly strangers on the train. (Finding Magnolia)

38. Passport, travel documents, and a neatly packed bag – ready to head out the door. (Amy)

39. Falling asleep outdoors with the sun on my face. (Kate)

40. A slightly cool breeze coming off the river that hints at fall ahead. (Pseudostoops)

41. Seeing how confident and brave my 14-year-old daughter is. (Rochelle)

42. When I get to spend a whole day with my mum. (Angy)

43. Sitting on the front steps of my house in Capitol Hill, reading a book, drinking a glass of wine, and watching the neighborhood go by. (Rachel)

44. Watching my daughter carry around a Patty O’Green doll from the 1980s like it’s the hottest toy ever. (Marti)

45. Being able to spend an entire day reading favorite books. (Cynthia)

46. Those conversations with strangers in which the walls seem to fall away. (Morgan)

47. Seeing my husband read to my girls. (Famous Amy)

48. New paints, clean brushes, and an empty canvas. (Emily)

49. Deep roasted black coffee. (MDJ)

50. Remembering to buy myself flowers. (Sarah)

51. Strawberry season. (Erin)

52. Meandering conversations with my thirteen-year-old son. (Lisa)

53. Nighttime play dates — kids in the yard, adults on the deck. (Amy Beth)

54. Listening to my husband play the guitar. (Violeta)

55. Hugging my son when I pick him up from school. (Melissa)

56. Listening to music outdoors. (Katie)

57. A long chat with an old friend. (Erin)

58. Sitting on my 11-year-old daughter’s bed, next to her, as she chatters on about her most important things. (Linny)

59. Sitting at long table filled with great food and fantastic friends, and you suddenly realize just how lucky you are. (Patsy)

60. When my boyfriend anchors my feet with his feet, wraps his arms tight around me, and kisses the top of my head, with my face buried in his chest. (Janelle)

61. Coming downstairs in the morning to a clean house. (Dutch)

62. Deer trimming my blackberries for me, so I won’t have to. (Guinevere)

63. Hymns of my childhood. (Guinevere)

64. Being in the middle of really good book and being excited about how much there still is to go. (Candice)

65. The moments when I realize there’s nowhere I’d rather be than where I am right then. (Samantha)

66. The amazing woman in my life who catch me when I fall. (Rhiannon)

67. Buying my new planner in January and filling it in with birthdays and special events for the year ahead. (CP)

68. Homemade waffles on a Saturday morning at 11 am. (Christine)

69. Lifting someone up. Whether from complimenting them on their awesomeness or empowering them to try something new. (Kristen)

70. An email from the public library, telling me my requested books have arrived and are ready for me to pick up. (Nicole)

71. Fresh-cut zinnias from my garden. (Sassafrass Mama)

72. Being in Yosemite and seeing the valley from Tunnel View, which reminds me just how small my life is in comparison to the world, and gives me instant perspective. (Stephanie)

73. Riding my Vespa. (Cindy)

74. The laughter of women in a group. (Katie)

75. My son getting off the plane when he comes home from university. (Also his younger brother’s happy face when he sees his older brother). (Cass)

76. The rush of adrenaline at that moment on a run when a good song comes on my iPod. (Kate)

77. Finally having a job I love. (Lydia)

78. Sitting around with family after dinner on the deck outside, talking and laughing, with no one wanting to pack up and go home. (Leah)

79. Watching mass group hugs, like when a team wins the World Series. (Alyssa)

80. A day that is 78, calm and sunny. (Nicole)

81. Hearing the people I love laugh. (Karen)

82. Kids hugging babies. (Flora)

83. Fresh tomatoes from the garden. (Hilary)

84. A day alone in a new city with my camera. (Amy)

85. Planning a trip somewhere I’ve never been. (Erin)

86. Those moments in life, occasionally, where everything just seems right and crystallizes into a memory right as you watch. (Becky)

87. Riding my bike down the tree-lined streets of my neighborhood, seeing how long I can balance at stoplights. (M)

88. Spontaneous dance parties with my (brand! new!) husband. (M)

89. Swimming in my lake. (Heather)

90. The way my boyfriend and I can look at each other and know the other is thinking “ice cream.” (Kristen)

91. Arriving in a new place at the start of a long vacation. (Aimee)

92. Too much wine at dinner with new friends. (Rachel)

93. Blueberry season. (Rachel)

94. Looking at pictures of my best friend’s new baby. (Andi)

95. When one of my children says something unexpected and unintentionally hilarious. (Nicole)

96. My husband and I communicating something to one another that no one else gets. (Jodes)

97. Dandelions. (Amanda)

98. The constant sound of simultaneous awe, love and contentment in my sister’s voice since the birth of my niece. (Annette)

99. Walking in the woods with a light breeze. (Leah)

100. Dream decorating my new apartment. (Laura)

101. The first green points peeking through the dirt in spring, and the first turning leaves in the fall. (Casey)

102. A table-full of friends bursting into laughter. (Desiree)

103. Swimming in a pond with my dog. (Ariel)

104. Clean surfaces. (Kim)

105. The way my four-year-old son’s hair smells after his bath. (Becky)

106. My husband’s accent. (Becky)

107. How music can make me cry and laugh and feel so deeply. (Becky)

108. Cuddling in any form. (Mandy)

109. Embarking on a new project. (Andrea)

110. Riding on a scooter around New Orleans with my husband. (MacKensie)

111. My little cousins and the letters they write me. (Rachael)

112. Tomatoes and avocados on sourdough bread. (Rachael)

113. The way my dogs are freak-out-happy to see me when I get home from work. (Nancy)

114. When my daughter tells me her brother is her best friend. (Beks)

115. Eating apricots straight from the tree. (Laura)

116. Reading under a shady tree. (Danielle)

117. Hiking near wildflowers. (Tiff)

118. The Internet that connects me to the wider world. (Crystal)

119. A good sweaty run. (Marissa)

120. A semi-toothless grin. (Sarah)

121. Men with crinkle-eyes when they smile. (Stephanie)

122. Suntan lines on my feet. (Jodi)

123. Remembering to look up: trees, sunset, stars, sky … (Meghan)

124. Crossing things off. (Michelle)

125. My little nephew calling to say hello. (Michelle)

126. Long walks through the woods in the fall. (Sue)

127. Pushing myself past what I think are my limits. (Rachel)

128. A healthy, delicious dinner made at home. (Heather)

129. When someone else makes coffee in the morning. (Michelle)

130. Crawling into a freshly made bed. (Erin)

131. When my three-year-old calls my six-month-old honey and sweetie. (Hope)

132. Spending a day in the kitchen cooking with all the windows open. (Sarah)

133. The third lap in the pool. (Mai)

134. Biking in the sun. (Mai)

135. Biting into a ripe homegrown tomato. (Trish)

136. Holding hands and seeing others doing the same. (Kristen)

137. When you get home right before the rain starts. (Wan)

138. The rush of endorphins toward the end of kickboxing class. (Nicole)

139. The smell of the tent when we unfold it. (Shelly)

140. Using the china that was given to me on my wedding day by my mother, which was her mother’s, which was her mother’s. (Megan)

141. Opening the windows when it starts raining. (Megan)

142. Listening to my 88-year-old grandmother telling me how my grandfather proposed. (Heather)

143. A shiny-clean kitchen floor. (Louise)

144. An unexpected surprise — and planning an unexpected surprise. (Louise)

145. Climbing into a bed made up with fresh sheets and lots of pillows at the end of the day. (Lisa)

146. Fireflies. (Maileen)

147. Honey-mint iced tea. (Sonya)

148. The moments leading up to a kiss. (Ats)

149. Smiles, knowing looks, and general understanding with strangers whom you may or may not speak to and may or may not see again. (SWAK)

150. Eating healthier and feeling better as a result. (Sarah)

151. Belly laughs. (Rhonda)

152. When my son wears his superhero cape to the grocery store. (Sarah

153. That first real exhale after sex. (Maya)

154. Making my mother proud. (Ingrid)

155. The Sunday paper. (Carla)

156. Living in NYC. (Lauren)

157. Little kids when they’re learning to talk. (Danielle)

158. When I come across something in my late father’s handwriting. (Tami)

159. The way I feel after exercise. (April)

160. That my daughter has to give the dog a kiss goodnight and the dog sleeps in front of her door. (Alicia)

161. Fresh lemonade. (Claire)

162. When friends from different circles of my life become friends with each other. (Annabanana)

163. When light turns golden at the end of the day. (Gabi)

164. Rainbow sprinkles. (Heather)

165. Using treasured postcards as bookmarks. (Christy)

166. Being good at what I do. (Hita)

167. My kids when they first get out of bed, all sleepy and snugly with wild hair. (mk)

168. Old things: Buildings, books, people … (April)

169. Taking off my bra at the end of a long day. (C)

170. Receiving handwritten letters from my grandfather. (Jan)

171. Wearing my (long distance) boyfriend’s clothes. (Elise)

172. My kid singing her heart out (to a thirty-year-old song.) (Marla)

173. Looking forward to date night. (Alison)

174. Bright colors. (Meredith)

175. Tropical scented anything. (Victoria)

176. Laughing by a campfire with friends and family (Genevieve)

177. Forehead kisses. (Kristin)

178. Being in an airport. (Megan)

179. Watching the sun set through trees from a hammock. (Lauren)

180. When I make a little list of the things I am grateful for. (Heather)

Jan 30 2012

Taste 1,000 Fruits, No. 97: Mountain Rose Apple

Can’t you almost smell that color?

When I first saw a Mountain Rose Apple, my breath caught. It reminded me of a professor who said that one of the Impressionist painters — I think it was Matisse — brought an apple as a gift when he visited friends. And that’s exactly what these apples are, tokens of affection. The best way to bring something simple and sweet to someone you love.

Taste 1,000 fruits is part of my ongoing Life List project. If you’d like to make a Life List of your own, start with these 10 tips or this exercise.

Jun 12 2009

Winner! Plus Father’s Day Gift Ideas

Congratulations, Emma #181! Random.org indicates that you are the chosen one. Enjoy your slotRadio and perfect ice cubes.

The rest of you may have some shopping to do, but fortunately your Father’s Day ideas are inspired. Freddy made Moo Cards from photos her dad has taken, so he can share his Flickr address with photo subjects when he travels. Evil Science Chick would love to replace the powder blue Mustang her father sold when she was born so he could buy a family car. Adel says, “My dad loves bouncy balls for some reason, so a big bag of bouncy balls would probably be his ideal father’s day gift.” And when Melissa was six, she picked a all the dandelions from the yard and left them in the mailbox for her father. He was on his way to punish her for shattering yet another pair of glasses when he found the bouquet, and decided against it. Awww.

Congratulations again, Emma! And for everyone else, here are the rest of your Father’s Day ideas:

Handmade and/or Sentimental
Big batches of homemade soup for the freezer
Transferring all his photo slides to digital
Homemade cards
Homemade book on the theme of “I love you more than…”
Repay college tuition
A card I made in college with a picture of us and words cut out of
baking
a macaroni encrusted picture frame of me
Baseball game scrapbook

Personalized

A brick engraved with his name and the details of his service to the USMC. The personalized brick is now among the many on the path at the Marine Corps Memorial here in DC.
Framed Photos
Portraits of the kids in their “My Dad Rocks” t-shirts
stepping stone imprint of our daughter’s feet
Mug with daughter’s handprints
Photo mousepad

Booze and Food
Beer of the month
Hot Sauce of the Month
Single malt Scotch
Tequila
Mr. Beer Homebrew Kit
A carton of cigarettes and a twelve pack of beer
Six-pack of PBR and a can of mixed nuts
Vintage Bourbon
A bag of “goodies” from the Sierra Nut House

Hobbies
Hiking Walking Stick
LA Times Sunday Crossword books
A Small Orchard
Anything from Lee Valley, a mail-order catalogue for woodworkers and gardeners
Painting lessons
Golf bag, shirts, jackets, pants, clubs, shoes, balls
Sunrise fishing trip
Tickets to the US Open golf championship for him and his favorite golf partner, my husband
Golds Gym for Wii
Enertia Electric Motorcycle
New Train Set
Chrome for his Harley
Afternoon of hang gliding
Gardening supplies
Ashtray
Kayaking
Sailing trip
adult tricycle

Family Time
A bag of circus peanuts and a road trip to Gettysburg
A nice meal
Child seat for his bike, helmet for the kiddo
2 copies of a book on a subject we are both interested in- one for each of us- so we can talk about them as we both read them
Extend our satellite TV channels
Day off from parenting
Disney World with his 3 grandkids
Hammock
I flew home one year as a complete surprise
A weekend without a schedule
A trip to Kansas City to cruise around all the places he liked to go as a kid with stops at his favorite BBQ and burger joints.
A day of antiquing together

Gadgets
Wireless headphones
GPS
Flip video recorder

Handyman Enablers
Chainsaw
Ladder
Manure fork
The Nail Jack

Tickets, Gift Cards, Donations

Opera tickets
Circus tickets
Movie tickets
Concert tickets
Sports tickets
eBay gift certificate
Borders card
Best Buy card
Gift certificates for rounds of golf, and a series of Sunday mornings where no one asks him to do anything, so he can play guilt-free
In-N-Out gift card
Heifer International donation

Practical

New bumper for the pickup
Travel toiletry kit
Underwear
Detail his car
A puppy
Tractor attachment

Media

Magazine subscriptions
Best-of This American Life
Stupid American History: Tales of Stupidity, Strangeness, and Mythconceptions
Louis L’Amour book
I renew my Dad’s subscription to Smithsonian Magazine.
Great Professors lectures on DVD from The Teaching Company

Jun 9 2009

Mighty Goods

May 5 2009

Mighty Goods: Mother’s Day Gifts!

2009 Mother’s Day Gift Guide

Mom’s Day is Sunday, y’all. I have a bunch of great picks up on Mighty Goods, but order soon, or no milk and cookies for you after school.