14,000 things to contemplate

Ever wonder about the everyday and not-so-everyday things that make you smile? Those moments when you realize, “Huh…I really like that…” and you find yourself flooded with happiness? I am one of those people on earth who could be called a list-maker; I LOVE to make lists. I make lists on just about everything from things I need to do during a week, vacation ideas or plans, shopping lists (both gee-I-wish-I-could-buy and gotta-eat-sometime lists), idea lists, art I want to make or buy lists – I could go on and on. And one of my favorite books is all about lists.

I’ve had this book, 14,000 Things to be Happy About, since high school. My mom bought a couple of them as gifts for friends and I swiped one for myself. This is a book I have looked at numerous times and marked up with highlighters, red pencils, pens, and whatever lay within my grasp at the time. The book is a randomly compiled list of things that one could find themselves being very happy about…depending on what your tastes are, of course. Not everything in the book makes me go, “Gee, I am so happy when I think about a cat running 80 mph.” Hmmm, not so much. But others make me giggle with delight or secretly smile. Such as this one below:

The highlighted and starred line? Yeah, that about describes what happened when everything started to click between me and The Guy. Not at all expected but something that undeniably makes me happy. Now, this next one below, you’ll observe, is not only highlighted with red pencil, but it is also starred and underlined. Who doesn’t feel happy when this occurs?

I could go on and on forever with pictures of what I’ve marked up in this montrosity of a list. The reason why I even brought it up is that I came across this book again just the other day and it reminded me of how I really need very little to make me happy. Just reading about these items makes me happy let alone having them happen.

One of the cool things about these marked up pages is that it is a time capsule of sorts, a journal in some ways. I can read what I’ve thought about or what’s made me happy over the past something-something years (it’s since high school…just pretend I gave you a number, okay?) and look at any comments I jotted down or emphasis I put on certain items. There is not a page in the book that is not marked up in one way or another. I just wanted to put this out there in case anyone needs a little diddy to spur on some missing happiness…or at the very least, put a smile on your face.



  1. Susan · July 23, 2008

    I have that book too! Ralph will sometimes give me a list of reasons that I should be happy. The other day I found it and it happened to be on a day that he was having a really bad day. So I put the book on his pillow so that he would have lots of reasons to be happy. Funny! There are days when you just need a reminder! 🙂

  2. Gillian · October 13, 2010

    I have to get this book!

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