Archive for the ‘Joy’ Category


Sometimes,  in the middle of a day that started well but quickly headed the other direction when I realize I’ve forgotten something very important.

I’ve forgotten to choose joy.

Joy is a daily choice.

We can either make that choice every day and find such sweet joy. Or we can ignore it, forget about it, and wondering why joy seems so distant.

Choose joy.

Just like taking a daily bath, make that daily choice for joy and see if you don’t find it following you throughout the day.

I know there will be days I’ll still forget, but the great thing is, you can choose joy at any moment in the day.

And I’m choosing joy for today.

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This weekend was one full of memories for me. On Saturday, Lil Miss had friends coming over for a barbecue to celebrate the end of the school year. As I prepared food and and got things ready, my mind wandered back to the birthday parties we always had for my sister. Her birthday would have been Sunday. She passed away eleven years ago from head trauma sustained from a grand mal seizure.

During my growing up years, since her birthday was in early summer, right after school got out, (and the weather was generally nice), we’d always have a barbecue to celebrate. While I made potato salad and cleaned off the patio and cut roses for a vase, it brought back many memories of helping Mom do those things in preparation of my sister’s birthday.

I was just thinking this morning that the memories hold far more sweetness than bittersweet feelings now.

Also, there is a swell of joy when I take out those memories and allow myself to sink into them.

It made me think of the Disney movie Inside Out.


The story follows a young girl who is uprooted from her life in the Midwest and moved to San Francisco. Her emotions – Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness – conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house, and school. The film shows the emotions as characters, and it’s hard not to love Joy.

So this weekend, as I was remembering all the fun times we had giving my sister happy birthdays, I felt a little like Joy in this picture… as if I was wrapping my arms around those joyful memories and holding them close to my heart.

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I just loved this quote.

Our mindset plays such a key role in our attitude, in how we see life, in how we react to and interact with others.

When we allow ourselves to realize just how good things really are, our hearts fill with joy and gratitude and a light shines in us.

It’s easy in this world to get caught up in the things we don’t have, the things that aren’t going right in our day (weeks – lives!), but when we intentionally focus on the good, that’s when we can find joy.

I hope you’ll join me this week in allowing the good things in your life to fill your heart that you might have an extra measure of joy.

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I’ve been thinking a lot the last few days about the ties between joy and gratitude. It seems when I’m feeling most grateful, I also feel full of joy.

And when I’m not feeling particularly thankful, joy is rather elusive.

Gratitude gives joy roots and place to grow, to flourish, to blossom and bloom.

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We can find joy when we walk through a day with a grateful heart. Just being in that mindset of expressing gratitude can help is find abundant joy.


In my quest of learning joy lessons this year, I need to remember by lessons in gratitude. Because a grateful heart is where I’ll find true joy.




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Joy Lessons Week 20


Recently, Captain Cavedweller and I had the opportunity to take a trip to Atlanta. The reason for our travels was so I could attending the RT Convention (which is an event for both readers and writers).

There were many things about this trip that brought me joy.

Perhaps the most important, though, was being able to spend a lot of time with my husband. We both get so busy with work and the day-to-day details that we sometimes don’t spend much time together with just the two of us.

It was awesome to just hang out with him. To laugh together and explore and just be.

I also found joy in meeting new old friends. What I mean by that is people I consider my friends because I’ve met them online but hadn’t yet met in person. It was so wonderful to actually shake their hands or give them hugs and say “hello, friend” in person.

There was also joy in just connecting with the people attending the conference. The readers were so fun and excited and it made me smile to interact with them at book signings.

And, admittedly, I found joy in exploring places I’ve read about and always wanted to visit – like Margaret Mitchell’s house!

Despite the piles of work waiting for me when we returned home, it was so worth it to take that time away, to get a new perspective, and spend time with people who make my heart smile.

May you spend the day with those who fill your heart with joy.

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Joy Lessons Week 17


For those of you who have been participating in the Joy Challenge this month, how are things going?

Do you find some days easier than others? I sure do.

But today’s challenge is “Notice the Magic.”


That seems like a fun and interesting challenge. Can you find magic in a loved one’s smile? In the colorful array of spring flowers? The decadent taste of a piece of rich, dark chocolate?

Where do you think you’ll find magic today? Wherever it is, I hope it brings you an abundance of joy!

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At the beginning of the month, I challenged myself (and anyone interested) to a 30-day Find Joy challenge.

Today’s challenge is to play with a child like a child.  And that’s why I love the above quote so much.

Most children have such an incredible view of the world – one not marred by cynicism, failures, anxiety, anger, bitterness, jealousy, or hatred.

What if we could see the world today, experience all the wonder, joy, and amazing beauty of it by looking through child-like eyes? I think I’ll find the edges soften, the colors brighten, and my heart lighten with the joy of seeing life around me anew.


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