My Happiness Project

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I finally finished slogging through We, The Drowned. Dang it was good…but for some reason it took me ages to finish reading it. At one point I actually had to look up how many pages it was (I was reading on Oyster) and it was only 700. I would have guessed it was twice that, easy! Whew. So If you’re looking for an opus to read, check it out. It’s wonderful but takes a  while!

So anyway, I finished it and decided that I needed a book that was light, what I call a ‘palate cleanser’ book.  I saw Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project and clicked on it. I read the first chapter and just felt…inspired? Encouraged? I am not sure but I immediately texted my husband and sister and was like you guys need to be reading this with me. 

I love how she weaves research into her stories as lightly as she is saying “may I have an aperitif?” And I was stunned at how quickly applicable it was.

Mornings here can be rough. Huckie is a hangry little thing in the a.m. he needs to be hugged right now and also milk right now and don’t leave me right now but get me cereal right now. Add a baby who needs to be held and a kindergartener that needs to get to school and it can be a recipe for frustration and yelling. I hate that. I hate starting the day like that.

Max was crawling on the kitchen counter, then to a chair at the table, then to another chair then to railing… I let out an exasperated heavy sigh and he immediately looked at me, eyes wide, ready to get in trouble.
I told him to stop.  But that look stayed with me.

A few minutes more he repeated the pattern. I caught him looking at me, knowing what was to come once he was standing on the kitchen table chair.  A lesson from the book popped into my head and instead of yelling I said “Trying to get to the playroom without touching the ground?” “yes” he said.

“when I was little, about your age, the carpet in my house was RED. Can you imagine?”  he couldn’t because who picks red carpet??  “Auntie Dub and I used to pretend that the carpet was hot lava and try to get all over the house without touching the ground. We actually used to lay out clothes and toys we could step on to get to the bathroom in the middle of the night. ”

His eyes lit up with delight at the image of his mom and aunt his age and doing the same thing…only more elaborately.

“It used to drive my mom CRAZY! She just didn’t understand that the carpet was lava and we couldn’t step on it!”

We both started laughing and it just changed the whole tone of the morning. Instead of being angry he was doing something that- let’s be honest- isn’t really that big of a deal, we found a common ground and we both ended up happier.

Instead of heading off to school grumpy, we ended up closer. And no kitchen chairs were injured in the making of the moment.

I don’t know about you but I would rather laugh than yell. So I am calling day one of my happiness project a massive success.

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