What does "living the simple dream" mean to me?

I always hear people from our generation saying "Ahh, living the dream" when they are doing somthing our of the ordinary - for example: sipping cocktails in a spa of a fancy resort or perhaps they post "living the dream" as the caption beneath a photo of them moving into their new $500,000+ mansion-esque home they have just mortgaged their life away for. At first I was confused by how simple my ambitions were. All I wanted was to live in a caravan and be able to spend as much time enjoying the outdoors with my husband and son, without my husband having to be at work all the time. So for me, this became my simple dream. I find myself having those "Ahh living the dream" moments when I am sitting in a natural hot spring with my husband and son, drinking a beer, ten feet away from a crocodile infested river. Now mine, my husbands and my sons life is all about chasing our simple dream.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Little things that bring me happiness..

I like to consider myself an "easily pleased" person - a simple soul. Although I think alot of people attach negative ties to the word and concept of being "simple". I guess I should take a moment to explain that I perhaps define "simple" a little differently and in a far more positive light than others traditionally do. I suppose this is obvious from the title of my blog and the following posts that suggest I like to lead a less "materialistic" life as opposed to being a "simple"- minded halfwit.
So I figured I'd post about a few simplistic, little (I dare not write "small") things that make me feel happy. Some of these are things I do - specifically to create a few moments of happiness, some of these are things that simply happen naturally and then result in happiness and some of them just are what they are. So here goes:

This reminds me of my son because he insists that his be painted aswell if he catches me doing mine. lol (lucky for me though when we do that it doesn't spark worldwide controversy)

- Painting my toe nails freakishly bright (and sometimes mismatched) colours. I used to stick to an extremely unoriginal "red" pedicure (you know the kind, most ladies swear by it). Then one day I was lured in by a beautiful almost flurescent purple colour so I painted it on and everytime I looked down that day I felt cheerful. Today I painted my toe nails a bright watermelon-esque shade which I love to look at and smile. The only issue is that I now have about 20 very much redundant bottles of slightly differing shades of red nail varnish!

- Sunsets/sunrises make me smile, feel positive, feel happy, feel inspired. They are like food for my soul. Setting my alarm and waking up at the crack of dawn to witness a sunrise is like popping a drug for me. It 100% of the time leads to a more relaxed, positive, happy day.

- My sons giggles and cuddles, but no, I'm not sharing those! That crazy little lout and his giggle, I mean it sounds like it should have come out of a five year old girl but nope - it came out of my three year old boy. That sound just makes me pull this "overwhelmed" face. My husband and I look at eachother in amazement, everytime we hear that sound. We are both always shocked by how much happiness it creates within us. I'm still not sure if its the actual sound or what the sound represents. Afterall - for a preant there is no greater joy than a happy child.

- Music - Whether I play the radio softly in the background or plug in my Iphone and crank the volume, it always makes me happier. A few songs guaranteed to make me smile (click on the links after each song to listen to them/watch them on YouTube - you wont regret it - although some of them have advertisment videos you have to click to skip before watching the song):

*Sarah Mclaughlans version of The Beatles "Blackbird"  
* Seeker Lover Keeper "even though I'm a woman"

* Cold Chisel "Flame Trees"
( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ILd1O44BDqc )

* Ben Harper "Forever" (this was my wedding song)
( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHzAVDg4m1Q )

* Eagle Eye Cherry "save tonight" (this is for some reason my alltime favourite song)
( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dTa2Bzlbjv0 )

* Cyndi Lauper "true colours"

* Everclear "Everything To Everyone" (there is a little musical add before this clip - just skip the add)

( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1vQJFF2TKQ&ob=av2n )

Theres obviously a billion more songs that have this effect on me. It would take me forever to list them all! 

- just going outside for a walk in the fresh air. Works a treat, gets the endorphins flowing.

- Going swimming. I LOVE the water. Sometimes it takes a bit of pushing to get myself to get up and go swimming but I always feel wonderful when I am in the water. It could be the beach, the river, the pool... Even the shower. I love being in the water. It makes me very happy.

- Reading. I love reading a book but its almost impossible to get a quiet minute alone. A good book can take you anywhere, through any emotion any life, anything is possible. I love reading "real life" books like biographies and memoirs. Memoirs are my favourite. I love a good "positive" ending.

- Baking/cooking. That sense of satisfaction when you have somehow managed to grab a bunch of inedible ingredients and fashioned them into a feast.. Its unbeatable. Not to mention the actual amazing sensation of DELICIOUS food on your palette. Mmmm. The cleanup, however... makes me not so happy.

- Playing guitar, I rarely play guitar because my guitar is at my mums house at the moment. Occasionally I whip my husbands one out and I just dont think anything can beat that beautiful, acoustic flow. I love it. Even if I can only remember three chords at the most, they still somehow manage to blend together to create a soothing melody.

- Walking on the beach, but I wont elaborate because theres not much of that going on here in Kalgoorlie (I suggest you "google earth" Kalgoorlie, then you will understand).

- Cuddling/talking to/playing with my guinea pig. Well the "family" guinea pig, whom I tend to hog all to myself. Animals are soothing and beautiful and Pepper- George is no exception to that rule. He is a wonderful creature whom always cheers me up.

- Writing, writing cheers me up, as does reading the writing of others - especially blogs. I lov writing my thoughts and feelings and reading them back over, it gives me as much perspective as a good, solid session with a counsellor or therapist. Somtimes I read back the words I have just written and it's asif it is the first time I have ever heard them, even though my soul has been screaming them for months. Somtimes when I write things down and read it back I learn entirely new things about myself and what makes me tick, things that help me to understand what path I should be following. It may not be like this for everyone, but for me writing is soothing and brings happiness.

There are a myriad of other things and experiences that make me happy but I'd be here forever if I listed them all too. The way I see it is that the little things are as important (if not more so) than the big things. Not only are the little things easier to achieve but they also all add up to create an overall "buzz" of happiness and positivity.

Never underestimate the small, simple, things in life. Never downplay the huge impact they can make on your life. When you lose sight of how important all of the tiny, seemingly insignificent moments are, you lose sight of the big picture too. Don't brush off the little things on the way to some "bigger picture". Those little things along the way are definates, definitive moments of happiness and no matter how fleeting they are, they ARE there whereas the "big picture" may never come or may not be what you expected when it does come.

Moments... can last forever.

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