Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Simple Joys

Welcome to Simple Joys on Chief 187™Chatter.

I keep thinking that the longer I write Simple Joys the more time I’ll spend in a blissful state enduring no conflict, self-doubt, or disturbances.


When I reflect on what Simple Joys does provide in my over-taxed, jumbled, scattered life is a sense of calm, happiness, and strength.

Concentrating on finding and now making Simple Joys adds balance, perspective, and, well, joy to my life.

Now, without further ado, is this week’s Simple Joys.

Family Fun Night. This past week the schools in our district observed “Love of Reading” Week which culminated in a celebration of Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

In conjunction with these happenings my oldest son’s school held its annual Book Fair. Thursday night was Family Fun Night when parents were encouraged to return to school with their children to browse the Book Fair, purchase books, eat donated treats, and try to win prizes in the free raffle. The whole family attended, picked out great new books, donated a book to my son’s classroom, and stayed for the raffle announcements.

We won not once, not twice, but three times! Having three children, that was the luckiest thing that could have happened for us. Each child got to take home a poster that was normally on sale at the Book Fair.

Supporting the schools, seeing our neighbors, and being triply lucky all in one night was a Simple Joy still worth savoring!

Organizing. I finally had enough. My family room was overrun with toys and I was miserable. So on Friday afternoon I took out two bags, one for trash and one for donations, and set to work on thinning out the toy selection. It was a big job and is nowhere near finalized, but I made huge inroads and can now maneuver around the room without running into a toy at every turn.

On top of that minor victory, I cleaned my desk located in the family room as well. My desk tends to be a catchall for DVDs others are too busy to put away, school papers that are dislodged from backpacks, “junk mail” and catalogues, and various sundries too embarrassing to name. Stuffed animals, notecards, tissue boxes, art needing framing, and a host of other items that DO NOT BELONG ON MY DESK were languishing there pathetically. Finally I became ruthless and set to work on opening a space.

Having an organized family room and desk, even if just for a few hours while my children sleep, is a Simple Joy I plan to revisit more than once a decade!

Bedtime. Friday night is one night I relax the rules a bit, read an extra story or two, stay and cuddle a bit longer, and soak up the wonders that are my children.

Pillow talk provides enormous insight into my children. I’m most in tuned and connected when we’re not racing around from here to there and rushing routines to just be done.

On Friday night I let the boys stay up far too late, but the times we shared were so worth it! Spending extra time with my children at bedtime is a Simple Joy I want to revisit as often as possible, especially on the weekends!

Punching Balloons. I picked up a very good deal at a party store over the weekend. I found punching balloons for $.50 a piece and bought three for my children.

They had the most rip-roaring, no-holds-barred fun I have ever seen for more than an hour!

Red-faced, laughing, and screaming in glee, the punching balloon still packs a punch in this house! And, at publication time days later, all three balloons are still intact!

Bargain hunting finds that provide endless fun are Simple Joys I rejoice!

Outdoor play. This winter has been relatively mild (knock on wood!) with little snow, few freezing temperatures, and days that implore you to take advantage, get outside, and play!

The children were delighted when we went outside to play on our swing set and just let imaginations run wild.

My sons, lifelong Star Wars fans, pretended to be bounty hunter Cad Bane and Jedi Anakin Skywalker from the animated Star Wars The Clone Wars series on Cartoon Network.

But they also climbed rocks, rode bikes, and chased one another!

Getting outside in the middle of winter to “blow the stink off of you” is a Simple Joy we’ve been able to thankfully take advantage several times this winter!

NASCAR. I can’t ignore this part of my life on this post.

From writing my columns on Skirts and Scuffs and Motorsports Unplugged, doing my radio gigs talking about NASCAR, to tweeting during the races, NASCAR has enriched my life, given me a second career, and has strengthened my relationship with my husband.

Having NASCAR in my life is a Simple Joy that gives back daily!

Some weeks are better than others, but thankfully I have Simple Joys each week to make each week extraordinary!

Whether you write your Simple Joys down like me or simply think about them each week, let Simple Joys elevate your happiness quotient!

Please join me tomorrow as I wax poetic on yet another topic on Chief 187™Chatter.


  1. Being able to breath through my nose yesterday for the first time in a week, no headaches, being free of flu is always a simple joy :-)

  2. Punching balloons from the 5 & dime! I'm so there.