Category Archives: Ben Howard

Joy Jam + Little Bliss List = Gratitude Friday

Typically, I do the Joy Jam on Friday, but lately, my friend and fellow blogger Lindsay seems to be the only one jamming with me, so I am going to add my list to Liv Lane’s “Little Bliss List,” and do like Lindsay has and just call the whole thing “Gratitude Friday.”

Liv describes her list this way: “Every Friday, the Little Bliss List provides a chance for us to celebrate the little things that brought us hope and happiness this week. I do believe when we focus on the sweet stuff of life, the sweet stuff multiplies. And by sharing those small gifts in our lives, we help others notice the gifts in theirs.

What I was grateful for this week:

1. Downton Abbey. If you haven’t heard of this show, you are living under a rock. People in my neck of the woods haven’t been able to stop talking about it, so this week I finally started watching it, and oh how the nerd girl in me loves it, the one who devours period novels and loves the theater. I can’t help thinking as I watch it, however, that if I had been alive during that time, I would have been of the class that worked in a factory or on a farm, and my life would have been so much harder.

2. The weather. Blah, blah, Jill, you’ve said it before, BUT: what was special about this week is that I had my first, official “sit in the backyard in a lawn chair with the dogs and read a book” session! This is one of my most favorite things to do, and for the first time, because the weather was warm but not too hot, I could lazily and easily sit, read and dream and stare at my toes, and watch my dogs relax and roll in the grass.

3. Clean bill of health for the dogs. We went to the vet yesterday and Sam let himself be handled and prodded and shot, without a single growl or any rude behavior, and the vet, rather than remarking on how old Dexter was getting, described him as being in shape “like an athlete.” Healthy and happy all around.

4. “I trust the power of my true self.” This guided meditation, read by the open-hearted, wise and generous Julia at Painted Path, was such a gift, she is such a gift.

5. Blogging from the Heart. We are only two weeks in to the class, and it has exceeded every expectation I had. I have the biggest girl crush ever on Susannah Conway right now. Registration for her “Unravelling: Ways of Seeing Myself” class opens on Saturday, March 17th.

Bonus Joy: Music. I have been listening a lot to dreamy boy singers like Bon Iver, Alexi Murdoch, and Ben Howard. Two heartbreakingly beautiful songs I’ve listened to over and over this week are these:

May the Grace of God be with you always, in your heart
May you know the truth inside you from the start
May you find the strength to know that you are a
Part of something beautiful…

And this next one isn’t a dreamy boy, but a girl, and it’s sad, heartbreaking, but if you’ve ever felt loss or grief, you will recognize that it’s true, true, true.

Nothing comes easily
Fill this empty space
Nothing is like it was
Turn my grief to grace

Oh, dear reader: Life is messy. Hard. And beautiful.