Yeah, well apparently it's that time of year again. Normally if I'm tagged by someone who knows me pretty well, I'll either totally ignore the request or I'll (in a feeble attempt at consideration for THEIR time spent on such a monumental time-waster) list things that I know will make the other person laugh. This time, though, well, the person who tagged me really doesn't know me all *that* well, and shoot ... I'm bored. But this time, I'm switching things up a bit! I'm taking the random out of it, and in a real, true effort to make the "real" me a little bit more obvious, I'm gonna do this MY way. Hmm ... I guess that's Fact #1--I'm apparently a bit of a control freak?
Here's my take on it--I'm going to list not 25, not 30, but 37 things that make me happy. Why 37? Because that's how old I am this year. Why things that make me happy? Because THAT is how you understand what makes someone tick. I'm not going to "tag" anyone else; I'm going to leave any participation in this little game completely voluntary--but you know what? I'm actually, really, and truly interested in how people would answer this very same question! If you want to, I'd love to have you play too! So, if you make it through my list, feel free to comment with a link to your OWN list! Okay? Alrighty then--now here goes.
37 Things That Make Kris Happy ...
1. Devil's food cookies. They're those little chocolate-covered circles of devil's food cake that have a thin layer of marshmallow under the chocolate coating. I inherited my love for these little yummies from my Papaw (who I don't think ever told another soul that he had such an affinity for them) and I'm just so sad that I can't seem to find them anywhere anymore except in the low fat version (which we all know is NOT the real thing).
2. Big, fat, red roses. Those big, deep-crimson blooms that fill up your entire hand. Awesome.
3. Gardenia bushes. My nose is tuned in to that scent every time I'm anywhere near them, and my memory immediately goes straight back to my Mamaw.
4. Waking up late on a Saturday morning with two or three little ones asleep between me and hubby--instant silent smiles shared across little blonde heads ... ahhh.
5. Having a cat curl up on my lap.
6. Freshly finished scrapbook pages.
7. Thin crust NY-style cheese pizza. I have still yet to have a slice as yummy as the one we last had the night before our wedding, at New York Style Pizza in the shopping center at the corner of Jog and Lake Worth Roads. One day ...
8. My hubby's homemade buttered popcorn. He makes the BEST buttered popcorn. Better than any movie theater! I've watched him; I've done exactly the same things he does when I attempt to make it, but I can't recreate it. I guess the secret ingredient really is love--and he's never hesitant or even huffy when I ask him to make up a batch. Seriously--it can even make an Adam Sandler movie worth watching!
9. The beach. Not sunbathing; not the skin-fest, but the actual sand-meets-ocean *beach*. The sounds of the surf, the smells, the beauty in the horizon, the solitude even among the crowd, the sheer magnificence of God's creation. Wow.
10. Snow-capped mountains. More specifically, the Bavarian Alps. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to camp at their feet three times in my life. Yet another grandiose display of the power found in the Master Artist's brush.
11. A baby's laughter. Communication that needs no translation!
12. The smell of fresh-cut-grass.
13. Hershey's Special Dark chocolate bars dipped in Jif creamy peanut butter.
14. Seeing my grandmother's, my great-grandmother's, and my great-grandfather's Bibles on my shelf. It is a heritage of faith that I hope and pray continues through my children.
15. Cinnamon Spice tea from Barnes & Noble's Starbucks.
16. The sight and sounds of my children playing together peacefully.
17. Philly cheesesteaks.
18. A phone call from an old friend that lasts altogether too long but is altogether too short.
19. Newly-opened Crayola crayons.
20. Being at home with my children--few sacrifices in this life are as rewarding!
21. Mamaw's carrot cake.
22. Freshly washed cloth diapers drying on the clothesline.
23. York Peppermint Patties!!!
24. Seeing soldiers in formation.
25. The scent of Jergen's lotion--the "original" sweet cherry almond fragrance.
26. Carvel ice cream cake. Maybe one of these years, my family will take the hints I've been dropping?
27. Homeschooling. Everything about it makes me happy. This could be a list completely by itself--the box of books arriving at the door, the stacks of papers, supplies, and folders........the whole experience of being the one teaching my children how to learn and love learning; it's such an amazing blessing that I thank God for every day!
28. Having a crying toddler bring me a boo-boo to kiss.
29. Five-year-old enthusiasm because she's just figured out how to curl her tongue!
30. Bubble baths in those long, deep German bathtubs! OH how I miss those tubs!!!
31. Seeing God "show off" by providing for our needs--usually with a major flourish!
32. Gibson's BBQ
33. Time spent in fellowship with other Christians. There truly is no finer company!
34. Comfy jeans.
35. Clean, crisp sheets.
37. This--having our whole family, including its new "extension", all together. We're not a perfect family, we can't get everyone smiling at the camera at the same time, the camera makes at least one (in this case, two) of us look thirty pounds heavier, and one of us is inevitably wearing something as offbeat as Shelby's Elmo slippers, but I wouldn't trade this family for anything this side of heaven!