30 things that make me happy

man-1156619_1920We’ve been experiencing another deluge of snow, the days are bitterly cold, and it seems as though winter is here to stay. I see photos of friends starting their gardens and I wonder, yet again, why I live in Canada. When its cold, wintry, and overcast, it’s easy for me to become unmotivated and moody. So I thought I’d share a few things that make me happy. Let me know what yours are too!

1. The warmth of the sun on my face.
2. The warm, squishy hugs I get from my family when I come home to visit.
3. Lighting candles and enjoying their warm, cozy glow.
4. The ritual of making tea: boiling the water, measuring out the leaves, letting everything steep, and finally sitting down and sipping the hot, fragrant liquid.
5. Hearing the birds singing outside my window in the morning.
6. Finishing up a creative project and hanging it up/giving it to someone.
7. Pulling on warm clothes straight from the dryer.
8. Taking a nice, hot, relaxing bath.
9. Going for a winter walk in the snow, watching the flakes drift down from the sky.
10. Planning out my next road trip or vacation.
11. Exploring the city on foot and finding little secret places.
12. When spring finally arrives and I don’t have to wear my winter clothes.
13. The smell of rain in the air and on the pavement.
14. Laughing so hard my stomach hurts.
15. When certain scents give me feelings of nostalgia.
16. Getting surprise text messages from friends.
17. When people give me cute nicknames.
18. Researching things I’m passionate about.
19. Dipping my toes in the ocean, running across the sand, and the smell of salt water.
20. Looking up at the stars and thinking about life.
21. Giving and receiving random acts of kindness.
22. Designing things, whether for work, others, or myself.
23. The spicy smell of cloves, reminds me of my grandparents.
24. Going for walks in beautiful places.
25. Singing along to my favourite songs while driving.
26. Taking photos during golden hour.
27. Catching up with friends and talking for hours.
28. Listening to beautiful classical music.
29. Watching the sunrise/sunset with a mug of tea.
30. Finishing up a great workout.

What are some things that make you happy?

The joys of winter

Snowy day

If I had to list the seasons in order of enjoyment, winter would be at the very bottom. I think it’s likely due to the frigid temperatures, icy roads, and blowing snow. But in the spirit of being positive, I wanted to share a few of my favourite things about winter.

1. I love the first snowfall that coats everything in a thick layer of white. I love taking the first few steps through pristine snow and watching the snowflakes drift through the air as they sparkle and dance in the breeze.

2. I love all the hot beverages. Hot cocoa, hot apple cider, hot mulled wine, tea, and coffee are all delicious. They taste even better when its cold out and you’re inside.

3. I love Saturday and Sunday mornings during the winter. I usually sleep in until about 8 am, then get to spend a few moments snuggling under my comfy duvet, wrapped in my blankets. Then I leisurely make breakfast while wearing my cozy pajamas and slippers.

4. I love walking outside and feeling the frosty air nip at my skin as it leaves rosy tracks in its wake. I also enjoy tobogganing and skating as long as I’m bundled up and warm.

5. Winter is the perfect time for comfort foods. Hearty homemade soups, stews, chili, and mac & cheese are extra satisfying. I also love all the holiday-themed foods like gingerbread, peppermint bark, and egg nog (I found the most delicious dairy free version, its so addicting).

If I look at all the winter things I enjoy, this season really isn’t that bad 😉 What are some of your favourite things about winter?

Image credit: “Snowy Landscape” by Leo Vähä is licensed under CC by 2.0

NaNoWriMo and other updates

Golden forestI can’t believe we’re more than halfway through November. Time flies regardless of what you’re doing, it doesn’t seem fair 😉

I wasn’t originally planning on doing NaNoWriMo again this year (you can check out last year’s post on the subject here if you’re interested). While I had really enjoyed last year’s adventure, I decided I was going to take a year off. I didn’t really have a story in mind and I was pretty busy. However, on November 1, I logged back into the website and started a new novel. One of the things I love about NaNo is that you have to write a certain amount each day, essentially ‘forcing’ you to practice. Last year I really struggled with motivation but its been a lot easier this time around.

I apologize for not sharing a lot of original content this month. With recovering from my Ireland/Scotland trip and trying to make word count for NaNo every day, I’ve been slacking on my blog. I’m still planning on sharing some of my trip photos so I hope you enjoy those. Thank you for being patient, its just taking me a little longer than I’d like.

Last year in November, I posted my Autumn Reflections series. But this year, autumn came and left before the end of September.  It’s officially winter here. Fortunately we haven’t had a big dump of snow yet but I know it’s coming. While I don’t enjoy the cold weather, I love the scenery when everything is blanketed in a sparkly layer of white. That and hot beverages are even more enjoyable when it’s cold out!

How is your November so far?

Image credit: “Golden Forest” by Juraj Patekar is licensed under CC by 2.0

 

My winter bucket list

winter wonderlandThere’s no mistaking that we’re in the midst of winter. I woke up this morning to a new layer of snow blanketing the houses, streets, and cars. Although I love staying in and relaxing when its cold out, I still have things I’d like to do. Here are a few of my plans:

-Finish packing for my upcoming move
-Sip hot chocolate while gazing out the window
-Finish reading the three books I’m currently working on
-Watch the new Star Wars movie
-Start on the sewing project I’ve been putting off for two years
-Write and send letters to my far-away friends
-Walk outside at night and look at the stars
-Make a snow angel and play in the snow
-Bake cookies or brownies and share them with friends
-Go through my stuff and donate the things I don’t use
-Light my candles in the evening – such a cozy feeling!
-Drive up to visit my family

What are some of your plans for winter?

Image credit: “Winter Wonderland” by Agata is licensed under CC by 2.0

Autumn Reflections – Day 30

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All things must come to an end. While autumn will technically continue until Dec 22, you can already see the change in the seasons. There’s a covering of snow on the ground and most of the leaves have already fallen from the trees. But with the end of one thing, comes the beginning of another. While autumn is saying its farewells, we can look forward to another season taking its place. Winter is just about here and there are many things to look forward to.

A tangerine and russet cascade of kaleidoscopic leaves, creates a tapestry of autumn magic upon the emerald carpet of fading summer.
-Judith A. Lindberg