What’s Making Me Happy (May)

Lots of hard and hurt, politics are driving me nuts, and it feels like the world is falling apart at the seams. So I’m deliberately turning my focus to things that make me happy. “A thankful heart is a happy heart.”

Blue skies and blooming flowers.

Spring FlowersAfter a depressing late April cold snap (bring those plants inside, drag out all the cozy clothes I packed up), early May in Nebraska is GLORIOUS. I grew up in the land of perpetual summer, but have learned to love the changing of the seasons. But the change from winter to Spring will always be my favorite.

Lincoln has a lovely Sunken Garden in the center part of the city. It is an explosion of color in the summer, but while we wait for that, they have the most gorgeous varieties of tulips blooming. It makes me happy every time I drive by, and this week we took the time to stop and walk around. Goodness abounds.

2017-05-04 20.18.57
Yes, I laid down on the ground to get a picture of one of my favorite Lincoln landmarks. Matt’s expression in this photo makes me laugh.

Breakfast Restaurants

Both my younger boys had well child visits this month (they all go up a year in the Spring, so we see a lot of the doctors’ office this time of year.) I take them separately, pull them out of school and make it a mom/son date with them. (Um, yikes. I guess I do that with my younger two, my teenager drove himself and I had nothing to do with it. But that was because he needed for a sports physical and we spaced planning ahead. I guess I owe him a mom/son date…)

I let him play with my snapchat while we waited for our food. 1969 looks good on him.

Anyway, typically when we eat breakfast out, we do bagels or donuts. But since I wanted to do something special (and am limiting my bread intake putting my beloved bagels on hold), I suggested to my middle son that we eat at an eggs and bacon place. He said, “LIKE AT A HOTEL??” Y’all, seriously, he didn’t know there were restaurants where they would make you pancakes.

We didn’t talk about it in front of my youngest because he was already jealous enough that his brother was going to the doctor while he was at school (he has….strong feelings about being left out of anything). But when it came time for his turn, I made the same suggestion. “DO THEY HAVE PANCAKES??” He told me 17 times over the course of the meal that this was on his list of favorite places and it was yummy and delicious.

So I guess unknowingly we were holding out on our kids, breakfast restaurant wise. But the news is out now, and they are going to want pancakes every time we eat out. I guess it will lessen the amount we spend at Chick-Fil-A?

The Popcast

I talked about my love of podcasts back when I discovered NPR. I still think of my week according to which podcasts I anticipate listening to while getting ready and driving each day. What Should I Read Next on Tuesdays, The West Wing Weekly and Happier with Gretchen Rubin on Wednesdays, Pop Culture Happy Hour and Ask Me Another on Fridays. I’ve added NPR’s Up First, which is a daily 10-12 minute overview of the day’s biggest news stories. It’s been a great alternative to getting my news from social media (all the information, none of the outrage.)

But the biggest change to my podcast listening habits happened last month, when Knox McCoy was on WSIRN and I thought, “The Popcast? That sounds like something I would enjoy.” And then I fell down a wormhole of delight. I looked for things to do that weekend so I would have an excuse to listen to more episodes. Where has this been all my life? There are 192 episodes and I am just now hearing about it.

The Popcast with Knox and Jamie describes itself thusly:

The Popcast is the Denzel Washington of podcasts: solid, dependable, hard-working and charmingly humorous. More specifically, it is a weekly conversation between Knox McCoy and Jamie Golden about all things pop culture. Frequently we discuss silly celebrities, inexplicable trends, and the most conversation-worthy TV shows and movies

I would describe it as listening to your two funniest friends arguing about things you may or may not care about. My favorite segments are when they read people’s responses to their topic of the week from social media and when they highlight the weirdest thing anyone bought with their Amazon link that week.

Highly entertaining, and has made my already podcast-heavy Wednesdays my favorite day of the week. I’d recommend starting with the Easter episode which made me laugh until I cried, and also feel like I needed to eat 5 Cadbury eggs right then and there.

How about you? What’s making you happy these days?


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