A list of 28 from 14,000 things to be happy about. Play with me?

Maybe the best things really ARE free?If you're ever in a bookstore just wandering through the aisles, enjoying the pleasure of new books - or used, the pleasure is very similar - I hope you'll take a peek at Barbara Ann Kipfer's classic, 14,000 things to be happy about. I call it a classic because this seemingly simple book has given me pleasure for years, and I still turn to it again and again to cull huge smiles from ordinary days.


Today I've enjoyed it so much that I "played this game" over on my other blog, too. This blog is supposed to be about travel and adventure and journies and challenges and all things related. And I think it's connected. I know it is. Travel is about looking at the world with wonder. With expectation. It has been my experience that you don't have to leave home in order to find these things. You just have to look differently...


So the list. I'm going to open my copy of this book and just find things. 28 things. 28 random things. And I'll put them here. Then you're invited to add to my list! Anything come to mind? Doesn't have to be profound or spectacular. Ordinary counts, too. What makes you happy? Small happy or huge happy?



  1. mischievousness

  2. gravity

  3. cotton towels

  4. great elm trees

  5. battery testers

  6. learning to separate eggs

  7. toast and honey butter

  8. wooden bridges

  9. people who have it all together

  10. swim meets

  11. a whisper impossible to resist

  12. chocolate milkshakes

  13. life beginning at 40

  14. stamp machines

  15. cashmere gloves

  16. dial telephones

  17. brake fluid

  18. telescopes

  19. angel hair

  20. third-grade teachers

  21. artistic license

  22. turntables

  23. rainstorms

  24. butcher block tables

  25. stationery embossers

  26. repairing a lamp

  27. the cool underside of a pillow

  28. young colts


 PS: To really enjoy this game, you have to give yourself permission to just put all the minutia and responsibility away. Just gift yourself with 5 minutes and think of random things. A memory that made you smile. Maybe number 24 on the list reminds you of the blue and white kitchen in your childhood friend's parents' kitchen where you would hang out and make monkey bread and watch her fry cheerios in cinnamon and sugar and lots and lots of butter. Butcher blocks are good for memories like that...