Things to be Happy About

Amidst all the *sturm und drang that we in this nation have endured over the past months, it is good to remind ourselves of all that is good around us. Take the amazing sunsets; sometimes the edge of the sky is burning with wide bands of gold, fire-y pink and lavender blue. Other times I can catch the **alpenglow that brightens the horizon with rose-gold just before sunset.

Then there are the phases of the moon at night; anywhere from the sickle moon (what we always used to call ‘God’s thumbnail’), to the half-moon, the three-quarter moon, and finally—the splendor of the silvery coin of the full moon.

Not long ago, I heard on the news that a school in Baltimore, MD is teaching young children how to meditate. Evidently, when some of the kids get disruptive and noisy and wiggly as kids do, they are not sent to the principal’s office. Instead, they go to the Quiet Room where an instructor shows them how to calm themselves; they are also taught basic meditation techniques (deep breathing, eyes closed, imagining being in a safe, calm place and so on). This is a lifelong skill that can absolutely change lives.

How wonderful to know that young kids are being taught how to control their emotions, runaway thoughts and nervous energy, simply by learning a few easy meditation skills. Just think of how life-changing this is! These children now know how to relax, take a breath, change their thinking, and learn that they actually have control over their feelings. I hope that this wonderful practice will spread throughout all schools.

Then there is the gratitude we feel in celebrating special days such as Veterans’ Day. The freedoms we enjoy were bought by the sacrifice of all who fought to defend our country and our way of life. We must never take them lightly, nor forget all those who made it possible for us to live in freedom.

When you can, thank every vet you see for their service. It means everything—they have given everything to help keep us all free. My eternal thanks go to every single veteran.

These are just a few examples of the wonderful, amazing and miraculous good all around us each day. Let’s try to take time, even if it is only for a minute or two—just to feel happy and grateful.

*From Webster’s Dictionary: 1. a late 18th century German literary movement characterized by works containing rousing action and high emotionalism that often deal with the individual’s revolt against society, and 2:  turmoil.

**Definition of alpenglow: A rosy glow that suffuses snow-covered mountain peaks at dawn or dusk on a clear day. Origin of alpenglow: Partial translation of German Alpengl&udie;hen: Alpen, Alps + gl&udie;hen, to glow.


Alpenglow over Mt. Fuji, Japan



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