The Potential for Happiness

I do at least one on-line search a day – if not more. Sometimes I visit the Google search page and just stare at the white box until I can come up with something.  It really doesn’t matter what it is – I just like seeing where it will lead.  You just plug in a few words, press the button and wait for the answers to questions you didn’t even know you were going to ask.

I love it.

Tonight was no exception.

My key word of the day: happiness.

And as I typed in the word ‘happiness’ others filled in as suggestions.  One of the choices was ‘happiness project’.  That sounded interesting.

Happiness Project happens to be a blog by Gretchen Rubin, who happens to have written a book by the same name.  While visiting her blog I noticed she has just published another book – called Happier at Home.  I decided to read about the book on Amazon to get more information.  One of the great things about Amazon is that you get a fairly nice preview of books if you choose the ‘Click to Look Inside’ option – which I ALWAYS do.

While reading about the book she mentions a quote by William Butler Yeats and it really hit home with me.  It reads:

Happiness is neither virtue nor pleasure; not this thing nor that, but simply growth.  We are happy when we are growing.

Research supports his observation.  Its not goal attainment, but the process of striving after goalsthat is growththat brings happiness.

—–

This is so true.

Think about the times you’ve been the most excited about something – maybe its when you’re planning that big vacation…or decorating for the holidays, or when you’re learning about a new hobby…or preparing for a big move…its the not knowing that is important – because it holds so much potential.

And when there’s potential – there is everything. 

Her Sleep Partner Looks Biting

I’ve been playing.  Can you tell?

And its been so much fun!

I ordered a set of ‘Haikubes’ a couple of weeks ago with the intent of creating haiku.  In case you’re not familiar…Haiku is a beautiful form of Japanese poetry consisting of seventeen syllables; five syllables in the first line, seven in the second line and five in the third line.   The idea behind the Haikubes is that you simply roll out the dice – which have words on them – and you create your poem from the inspiration on the cubes.

But I decided to shake things up a bit (pun intended) and create my own version of poetry, using the dice, but adding some visual interest instead of more words.

This form really speaks to my minimalistic sensibilities!!

What do you think?

Say these words softly and slowly

I’ve been in a poetic mood lately – that’s the best way I can describe it.

I’ve always loved words but this is somehow different and all of a sudden.

I took advantage of my Prime membership today (big surprise) and will be receiving (not one) but two volumes of poetry tomorrow (And, no, I could not wait until Monday for delivery even though it would have been free).

See what I mean??  I’m having poetry over-nighted!

Its kind of scary!

I’ve run across a couple of poems by Robert Frost and Emily Dickinson recently, where each time while reading them, something inside of me ‘tingled’ for lack of a better word.

I never enjoyed poetry before now.  In fact, I never even liked it (much) before now.  So I’m kind of excited to see where this new interest will lead me.

I’m not sure what has changed, other than my perspective, possibly.

Although once, now that I think about it, while watching Anne of Green Gables  (several years ago) that one part – in the beginning – where Anne is reciting the ‘Lady of Shallot’, ‘Willows Whiten, Aspens Quiver’…THAT did get me…maybe I’ve just been in denial all this time.

Anyway…I was perusing the internet just now, looking for ‘beautiful words’ to tide me over until tomorrow and I found a few that I like the sound of.

In fact (according to Wikipedia) there is a term for words or phrases that are ‘beautiful’ simply in terms of phonaesthetics – meaning they have no regard for semantics.  One (much used) example of this is the word:  cellar door. 

Say it softly and slowly. 

Cellar door

Nice, isn’t it?

Here are some others:

(but you have to say them out loud, softly and slowly).

Ephemeral

Evocative

Harbinger

Imbue

Incipient

Fetching

Ethereal

Dalliance

Effervescent

Elision

Gossamer

Leisure

Lilt

Jonquil

Tendril

Plethora

Myrrh

Mist

Quintessential

Serendipity

Demure

Murmuring

Anemone

Tranquil

Luminous

Cerulean

Fawn

Hush

Diaphanous

It’s quite nice, don’t you think?


When I get a little money

I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes. – Erasmus

Who would’ve thought books were addictive even back in the 1400s?!  That’s around the time Erasmus penned this.

I feel a kinship to this guy even though I know nothing much about him.

You see – I have a book fetish.  I’ll admit it.  I love books.  I can’t get enough of them.  When I’m surrounded by them I get a sense of calm and peace like nothing else (of course that happens a little while after the fluttering of my heart settles down a bit).

Even as a kid I remember going to the library and getting such an excited feeling – one of possibility or opportunity.  I’m not sure which describes it best.  But it was a very real feeling – that fluttering in the pit of your stomach – Christmas morning – your life is full of potential – feeling.

And I still do.

Especially with books on creativity, new thought processes, anything that offers hope for change or a new beginning or a new creative outlet – they’re all positive – and they’re always appreciated no matter what the circumstances may be.  I’m always open to something new, something better, something different.

When I first started ordering books from Amazon (years ago when books were all they sold) – they would send out cool bookmarks with the order … not sure why they stopped doing that – but I remember when I got this quote and have always remembered it.

Sometimes having so many books around can be a bit overwhelming at times – mainly because its just hard to decide which one to pick up first!

But eventually I do decide.

The best part is…there’s always a book for another day!

I spent my lunch break today buying (more) books…

  • Encaustic Mixed Media: Innovative Techniques and Surfaces for Working with Wax – Patricia Baldwin Seggebruch
  • Flavor for Mixed Media: A Feast of Techniques for Texture, Color and Layers – Mary Beth Shaw
  • Steel Wire Jewelry: Stylish Designs, Simple Techniques, Artful Inspiration – Brenda Schweder
  • The Cloth Paper Scissors Book: Techniques and Inspiration for Creating Mixed Media Art –  Barbara Delaney

I’m all a tingle!!