These are ten things that I love. They’re in no particular order. I love them all in different ways at different times. There’s something about each of these simple pleasures that brings joy and fulfillment to my life.
If I sat here long enough, I could come up with a list of a million little things that I love, but then this post would become a big thing that would keep me from all these little things that I love. But there really are so many little things that bring me that sweet feeling of being alive—if I just slow down enough to notice them.
I’ve definitely experienced many of these things without really experiencing them at all. It’s easy to eat an ice cream cone on auto-pilot—devouring it without tasting it. It’s easy to have the sun shine on you without noticing its warmth on your skin.
I’m trying to slow down and appreciate these things a little more. I’m working on bringing a little more mindfulness to my moments.
Perhaps that’s why I wrote this list. It serves as a reminder to look for these little things in my life. If I don’t pay attention, they’re easy to miss.
My list will certainly be different from yours, which is another thing that I love. We’re all different. We all come from different DNA and upbringings. We all carry a different story. The key is to recognize the things that you love and then make a little more room for them in your life.
What I really mean by making room for these in your life, is to make room for them in your awareness. Find even one moment to pause and appreciate those little things and see how they affect you.
Without further ado, my little list:
1. Ice Cream Cones – There is something special about an ice cream on a cone. Ice cream in a bowl is wonderful. Ice cream on a cone is divine. I think the difference is the spoon. With the spoon acting as the middle man between between the ice cream and my tongue, something gets lost in the delivery. Giving taste buds direct contact to the sweetness and softness of a slightly melted ice cream cone is a joy to me.
2. Sunrises – I don’t always see these. Sometimes I sleep through them. Sometimes my eyes are already turned toward my laptop. But there is something about the first sliver of the sun that fills me with a feeling of hope and awe. There is something about the golden light that spreads over the world that inspires me. I love those moments when I catch them.
3. Hugs – You might not know this (and it’s probably not official) but Ubud, Bali is the hugging capital of the world. Having lived in Ubud for several years, I’ve adopted an affinity for prolonged hugs. There is something about feeling yourself heart-to-heart with someone else that warms my heart.
4. Throwing a Baseball – Yep, I’m American. I love throwing a baseball. I love the smell of a baseball and the feel of it in my hand. I love trying to throw a curveball. I love trying to throw the knuckleball my uncle taught me so many years ago. When you spend fifteen minutes throwing a baseball back and forth, you don’t need words. You just throw and life is good.
5. Breathing – Yes, breathing is a little thing and it’s also a big thing. The big thing is that it keeps me alive by regulating the flow of oxygen and carbon dioxide in my body. I really appreciate that part of it! I also love the calming effects of breathing. No matter how crazy my day has gotten, I know that I can regain perspective if I pause to feel my breath. I try to start each day with at least 10 minutes of watching my breath in mindfulness meditation.
6. Reading in the Sunshine – A good book in the sun is a great way to spend a little time in the afternoon. I love to feel the sunshine on my skin while I feel myself get caught up in a page-turner.
7. Reading Bedtime Stories – There are two little people in my home who love bedtime stories. This is good for me because I love reading them. Sometimes, though, I forget that I love reading bedtime stories. Sometimes I think that I’m too tired to do so. Sometimes I think I’m too busy. So these little people (who look a lot like me and Lindsey) have to remind me that I love reading them stories. It feels so good to lie down next to them, to talk in funny voices, and to go with them into a world of imagination and wonder.
8. Riding a Bicycle – I like to ride a bike and I like to ride it fast. The biggest pleasure for me comes when I reach the top of a big hill and I can zip down the other side. I like feeling the wind on my face as I crouch forward, trying to be aerodynamic. I like the subtle feeling of fear that comes with riding quickly down a winding mountain road. I can feel the adrenaline and it makes me feel alive.
8.5 Riding a bicycle with friends and family – I’m blessed to have good friends and family members who also like to ride bikes. I enjoy how we are able to motivate each other to keep going, simply by being there.
9. The Smell of Lilies – Stargazer Lilies. They were present in the room when my daughter was born. I loved their smell before her birth and now I love them even more. This simple act of smelling a flower, makes me so happy to be a human being. Thank you, lilies.
10. The Sound of Ocean Waves – What is it about the sound of ocean waves? Waves embody strength, fluidity, power, and rhythm. Their sound helps me relax and reminds me to breathe. I wrote about the sound of the waves yesterday. I’ve continued listening to them today. Perhaps that’s why I’m continuing to think about the little things that I love.
Bonus: Raindrops on My Skin – Oh there’s one more that needs to be on this list: Raindrops. Most of the time I avoid these, but when I want to feel alive, there is nothing quite as magical as feeling raindrops on my arms, head, hands, and face.
So that’s my list of ten (plus a bonus) little things that I love. Another thing that I love is hearing from you. Let me know what little things make your life a little sweeter. Leave a comment below.