50 Happy Things for 2015: Bloggers Unite in Flood of Gratitude

Dawn, who writes the blog Tales from the Motherland, invited me to join a group post about all the things we’re thankful for this year in order to spread love and joy around the holidays.

But we have to come up with 50 and only give ourselves 10 minutes to do it.

Sounds a little stressful to me.  So in preparation, I inhaled a few slices of fruitcake, chased them down with some spiked eggnog, then burped up a storm. Ah! Now I was ready to compile my glorious list of holiday cheer.

And because this is all about sharing, we’re inviting you guys to join us. I promise that you will feel truly positive and grateful after you do this exercise.

50 Things That Make Me Happy:

  1. My kids.
  2. My husband.
  3. Yeah, I love my family more than anything else in the entire universe.
  4. Did I mention my family?
  5. Star Wars. I saw the first one in the theater with my dad when I was a kid.  It was mesmerizing and I had a huge crush on Han Solo. And I don’t know if you’ve heard, but it’s back with J.J. Abrams. Yeah! I just wish to god I had kept my little 1980 Princess Leia action figure. I think my brother fed her to our dog, who not coincidentally was named Princess.
  6. Shopping for gifts online in my bathrobe.
  7. Coffee! Oh, dear sweet nectar of the gods! Sometimes I just want to dive right into my mug and go swimming.
  8. My mom. She knits like crazy and loves to listen to the Doors. Yup, she’s badass.
  9. Forgiveness. My mom and I have had a pretty rough relationship, but age has mellowed us out. We’ve forgiven each other for many things in the past.
  10. Coldplay. Shut up. I love them! When I hear their music my soul feels instantly lifted. It’s full of positivity and I need more of that in my life.
  11. This year, I actually won a contest to see David Gray (one of my faves!) in a private little concert on the pier by the ocean. We sat on a cozy couch on a deck with about 20 others and listened to him sing as ships sailed by in the harbor. It was the perfect setting.
    My future living room.
    My future living room.
    Singing "Snow in Vegas", his duet with LeAnn Rimes.
    Singing “Snow in Vegas”, his duet with LeAnn Rimes.

    And I even got to hug him afterward!
    He had such dry humor and he was very polite. He said to my husband, “How you doin’, mate?” Mate! Oh, those charming Brits. Plus, it was his birthday so I got to eat cake. Best. Day. Ever.

  12. My microwave and crock-pot.
  13. The smell of my Christmas tree when I walk in the door.
  14. My husband for being such a loving, attentive dad. My kids worship him.
  15. Singing alone while driving.
  16. Humor. I live for the funny. I have to laugh every day or I’ll die.
  17. Late night TV when I have insomnia.
  18. Listening to my daughter play the violin.
  19. Singing Adele songs at full blast with my daughter.
  20. My son’s dimples and smile.
  21. My bed. Is it just me, but isn’t that moment when you lie down after a long day the single best thing ever? I love sleep.
  22. Blogging. It’s always been such fun and I love to do it.
  23. The Internet. I can’t live without it. I remember the very first time I was introduced to it. My brother told me to type a word to search and I typed “fart” and all these fart jokes popped up like magic. Mind blown. My life was never the same after that day.
  24. My body. It may be getting wrinkled and fluffier, but I can still go for long walks. I can hug people. I’m just happy to be alive at this point. Only took me nearly 45 years to figure this one out.
  25. Oh, my god, did I get to 50 yet?!
  26. I will never get to 50.
  27. My little tiny Prius that only costs about 12 bucks to fill up now.
  28. El Nino! It’s still balmy and almost Christmas here in Maine. After last winter, I’ll take it.
  29. Polar Express. We can’t get enough of this movie. Isn’t Tom Hanks amazing?
  30. Christmas Vacation movie with Chevy Chase.
    Especially the scene with the squirrel in the tree. Or my favorite line from Eddie: “You know that metal plate in my head? I had to have it replaced, cause every time Catherine revved up the microwave I’d piss my pants and forget who I was for a half hour or so.”
  31. Laughing until you cry. See above movie.
  32. David Bowie and Bing Crosby’s “Little Drummer Boy.”
  33. Chocolate.
  34. The fact my daughter is more obsessed with the TV show Survivor than I am. It’s our little ritual to watch it every week together.
  35. Video games. I love to play them with my kids and I sometimes win.
  36. Pecan pie. I’m making my first one this weekend. And it reminds me of one of my favorite films, When Harry Met Sally.
  37. I work from home and get to be the one to pick up my kids after school. This is one of the major reasons I work from home. I want to be there for them as much as I can. I’m sure they won’t mind if I live in their college dorm room closet one day, right?
  38. Love. I have a lot of love in my life and I’m forever grateful for all of it.
  39. Meditation. It helps calm my racing mind.
  40. Christmas lights. I could sit out in the living room all night and just gaze at the tree. Very peaceful.
  41. Football. When I watch a game I feel like my late dad is sitting next to me. Late as in dead, not as in “late to the game” late.
  42. Dark humor.
  43. That every morning without fail my husband brings me my coffee right after I wake up. He’s been doing this for over 17 years. (I think maybe it’s because he knows how cranky I am before that first sip.)
  44. Wahoo! I’m at 44! And you’re still here? Bless you.
  45. Music. I couldn’t survive without it. It’s magical and transcends everything else. I hear a song and I’m instantly transported to another time or place. My mind is free, just busted wide open. It’s therapeutic and saves my soul.
  46. Writing. Words. Writing words. Yeah. It’s good.
  47. Books. I have about 20 new ones I need to read but don’t have the time.
  48. Gray hairs. I actually love having a little bit of gray. It makes me feel like I’m saying to the world: “Yeah, that’s right! I’m old! Don’t mess with me!”
  49. The Big Bang Theory. I have major crushes on Sheldon and Leonard.
  50. My blog readers. I truly appreciate every comment and like. (I think there are still a few of you out there, right?)

Whew, I’m done!  Now it’s your turn.


If you’d like to join in, here’s how it works: set a timer for 10 minutes; timing this is critical. Once you start the timer, start your list. The goal is to write 50 things that made you happy in 2015, or 50 thing that you feel grateful for. The idea is to not think too hard; write what comes to mind in the time allotted. When the timer’s done, stop writing. If you haven’t written 50 things, that’s ok. If you have more than 50 things and still have time, keep writing; you can’t feel too happy or too grateful! When I finished my list, I took a few extra minutes to add links and photos.

To join the bloggers who have come together for this project: 1) Write your post and publish it (please copy and paste the instructions from this post, into yours) 2) Click on the blue frog at the bottom of Dawn’s post HERE. 3) That will take you to another window, where you can past the URL to your post. 4) Follow the prompts, and your post will be added to the Blog Party List.

Please note that only blog posts that include a list of 50 (or an attempt to write 50) things that made you feel Happy or 50 things that you are Grateful for, will be included. Please don’t add a link to a post that isn’t part of this exercise.

Have fun, guys! Happy Holidays!





85 thoughts on “50 Happy Things for 2015: Bloggers Unite in Flood of Gratitude

    1. Thank you! And I’m just thrilled someone out there knows who David Gray is. I just love his stuff. He even sang one of my favorite songs, Back In The World. And I’ve already seen Christmas Vacation three times and I’ll probably watch it again this week.

  1. I am SO tickled that you joined in… all the way from Maine! Woot woot! I am having a blast (even at nearly 4am) reading all this gratitude and happy! David Gray! Star Wars! Music! Cold Play (yes)!… I love how I feel even more connected to bloggers I already like. Happy holidays, D.

  2. Great job, Darla. You have a beautiful family. I probably won’t take this challenge…..but then that’s what we curmudgeons do. isn’t it? But after family, friends, hearth and home, and our pups, your blog would be right up there. Always an hilarious slant on life’s vicissitudes. Merry Christmas.

    1. Oh yes, you can:
      Absolut, Finlandia, Grey Goose, Smirnoff, Stolichnaya, Ketel One, Polar Ice, Kremlyovskaya, Rachmaninoff, Artic, Keglevich, Nemiroff, Villa Lobos, Bong Spirit, Ursus, Van Gogh, Hooghoudt, P.I.N.K., Vox, Absolwent, Chopin, Sobieski, Siwucha, Polonaise, Soplica, Starka, Wyborowa, Zubrowka, Wisent, Shustov, Moskovskaya, Russian Standard, Narodnaya, Ruskova, Putinka, Renat, Rokk, Svedka, Khlibnyi Dar, Pshenichnaya, Blavod, Khortytsa, Glen’s, Orloff, Skyy, UV, Tito’s, Vodka 14, Savvy, Rain, Popov, Nikolai, Firefly, Three Olives…. oooffff.
      I hope i don’t have a hangover after this comment….

  3. Hey, I think Coldsore – I mean Coldplay – is doing the Super Bowl this year. You know…the one that WON’T feature the Sad Pats.

    If you break a needle off that Christmas tree and snap it in half. It’ll release a punch of pine fragrance. It’s fantastic. Try it.

    Blogging doesn’t get a mention until #22?! And your readers dead last? Do you know what that makes you? Healthy. I think I had a life before the internet but I don’t recall any of it.

    Jesus Christ, my family and I love Survivor. How did this happen to us? I’m happy for this season’s winner, even though he’s probably a stinkin’ Pats fan.

    I could probably rattle off 10 in :50 minutes. Is that allowed?

    1. My daughter is so obsessed, she watches every episode of last season over and over. Mainly because she thinks Joe is “cute”. (That’s my reason too.) I totally mean to brag when I say that I guessed who would win Survivor this time around halfway through the season. I don’t think I’ve ever guessed correctly before. My favorite Survivor is when Bob from Maine won. Score one for the old farts! And I’m actually FB “friends” with Dan (Maine again) who played on the last Survivor. I’m thinking of applying to next year’s Survivor but only if they sweep the island of spiders.

  4. 50? Freakin’ 50???????

    Loved yours Darla. But numbers that high make me think of my age (more than 54.5) and the coming apocalypse. So I’d better not …

    Happy Holidays, my friend!

  5. What a wonderful post to wake up to!
    I LOVE your list! I can relate to so many of them. BUT I draw the line at gray hair. If I had a few I’d be cool with a sparkly halo, but can’t keep up with dying it!
    My mom can’t come for Christmas so I’ll be in line at the post office for hours this morning. If there’s a Christmas miracle, I’ll post one too!
    Merry Christmas, Darla!

      1. Nope. Over 10,000 hits this weekend on that same old post from 2011 on Bunny Bixler. I don’t think I’ll ever know why. But the good news is that WordAds is going to owe me a check again, and less than 2 years after the last one. I’m gonna be rich…RICH, I TELL YA!

  6. Dana

    I’m right there with you on family, music and funny! I had a bunch of Star Wars figures as a kid. I played with them as if they were Little People figures, because I never saw the movies! Your blog is definitely on my list, too! Sorry I haven’t been commenting for a while. I have been in and out of the hospital, after being diagnosed with cancer. Love to you and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  7. I was going to say that i won’t participate since it takes me around 2 hours or more to do a list of 10, and here you need 50 – but in responding to Dave’s comment, I guess I already made a list of 50. 🙂

  8. Wonderful list, Darla. I’m glad you’re not freezing this year. What a great place to watch a concert. And now I want t watch Chevy Chase. I’m going to watch that with my kids right this second! What would life be without laughter and chocolate and coffee and love? Thanks for all the laughs you’ve given me! xoxo

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  10. I loved your list. I try and do this a few times a year. My list always includes gratitude for lists. I make lists all day every day, and when making a list of the things for which I’m grateful I’d be remiss not to include ‘lists’ as an organizational concept.

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  12. You did this in ten minutes? You are a speed demon, woman. Now about that gray hair — Yay. This is how it goes: First you look a little witchy and scary. Then it grows out, and you become invisible in public. It’s awesome. Really.

    Love your list of fifty things. Happy holidays. Thanks for spreading the love.

    1. I think it helps that I type very fast. I’m looking forward to going all gray. I think it would also be nice to have a nice gray streak instead of all these random grays popping up. I hope you had a happy holiday and thanks for stopping by!

  13. Darla, I love your list. How the hell did you get it all in, in 10 minutes? So thrilled for you about your work from home situation these days. I can relate to the gray hair thing, but instead of a few, I’m totally salt and pepper upstairs. I feel wiser these days. I hope you guys had a great Christmas an will have a kick-ass New Year.

    As per conditions of accepting the Sunshine Blogger Award, I am passing it on and nominating you, my dear. If you choose to accept, just hop on over to https://mariner2mother.wordpress.com/2015/12/31/bringing-sunshine-into-my-life/ and the rules are there (don’t you hate rules?). It’s the first award I’ve been nominated for that I’ve accepted. Cheers!

  14. I love this list Darla! I can relate to many of them (not all, but we won’t talk about those ones). This Christmas was the first one in quite a few years where I didn’t watch National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, and boy did I miss it! Is it too late to watch it now? I need my Chevy fix.

    Happy New Year to you, hope you will be back posting-a-plenty in 2016! I’ve not been very active in blogging or blog visiting over the last year year, but I hope to rev it back up again (rev it back up again?!) this year.

    1. It’s never too late to enjoy your Chevy fix! Happy New Year to you as well, V. I hope both of us get back to blogging more this year. I really do miss it. Sigh. If only I could stop time long enough to take a breather and write more. Instead I gotta do those pesky things like sleep.

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  16. bindmoggled

    Coldplay, David Gray, coffee, reading, writing?! So many things on your list would be on mine! Great post. Happy New Year!!!

  17. Love this! Just saw this post/challenge and started my blog a year or 2 later so..missed this BUT this inspired me to write another post that’s a lot like this with my own spin to it. In short, thank you!

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