“Happier at Home” — one for me, one for you

For the last eighteen years, September in our family has meant a shift: from open-ended summer hours to school schedules. If you’re a parent, you know all about the mixed feelings that accompany the turning of the season. In this month of shorter days, cooler nights, fresh starts, and new notebooks, the urge to shake things up a little coincides quite neatly with the departure of children, the return to classes, a kind of general buckling down and getting back to business.

I’m always a little sad to see my own boys go, already regretting the swims we didn’t get to take, the picnic dinner I meant to pack and never did, the Netflix movies I was certain we’d watch together that are still sitting in a basket on the kitchen counter. But there’s a touch of eagerness and relief as well. The kids go back to school and the house is mine again. Time expands into the unfamiliar silence. New projects beckon.

This year, September is already proving to be a little unsettling. For the moment, no one is going anywhere. Jack, who graduated from high school last spring, is taking a year off to heal two broken vertebrae in his back; he’d like to start college pain-free. And Henry, who graduated from college in May and just finished a demanding summer job on Cape Cod (nine musicals in eleven weeks), is home again, applying for jobs, taking an online class, figuring out next steps.

The irony, of course, is that having finally grown comfortable in our “empty nest” over the last two years, while Henry was away at college and Jack at boarding school, I must now get accustomed all over again to having a house full of people. Young adult people whose schedules and housekeeping standards and dietary needs and ideas about how to spend Friday night do not necessarily match my own.

I love my sons and my husband. And there’s nothing I like more than sitting down to dinner with our whole family gathered around the table. But I’ve found myself, over the last week or two, wondering how I can reclaim some of the spaciousness and ease I’d just begun to appreciate in my post-child-rearing years – while at the same time making our home a warm and welcoming place once again for all four of us.

Enter Gretchen Rubin.

I first heard of Gretchen from my mom, the very day her first book, The Happiness Project, was published. “I just saw this woman on the Today Show,” my mother said, “and she’s already on the New York Times best-seller list.”

I watched the clip on my computer. The music and images brought tears to my eyes. Gretchen’s thoughts about what really matters in life aligned with my own; this young mother of two was clearly very smart and thoughtful. But I didn’t really want another “project.” Besides, I thought, I was older than she, and therefore presumably wiser as well. And honestly, wasn’t I happy enough already?

One night last month, I looked over at Steve, reading in bed beside me. To my surprise, he was absorbed in The Happiness Project – not at all the sort of book he’s generally drawn to. “This is really good,” he said, looking up. “I think we should both read it. It would be fun to try some of this stuff.”

A few days later, an email from my friend Margaret: “I think you will really like Gretchen Rubin’s new book, Happier at Home.”

Margaret lives alone with her companionable cat Jack in a storybook cottage surrounded by magical gardens. She grows her own food, sustains an extraordinary web of friendships, reads and writes in a room with a view of a frog pond, a magnificent Buddha statue, a proliferation of brilliant flora and entertaining fauna. She sips tea out of hand-thrown mugs from Tibet. She is, by all accounts, quite happy at home. And, clearly, she’s more open-minded than I about becoming just a bit happier.

No sooner had I promised Margaret that I’d read Happier at Home, and placed an order for it, than an advance copy arrived on my doorstep from Gretchen’s publisher. Was the universe trying to tell me something? Did I have anything at all to lose by listening? I sat down and began to flip through the book at random.

And the first page I came to was about. . . KISSING! Gretchen decides that one easy way to bring more happiness into her home is to make a simple ritual: “Kiss in the morning, kiss at night.” (Kissing, she points out, is a very popular activity, practiced in more than 90% of cultures.) And so, she considers the day’s various kissing opportunities, reminding herself that if something is important to her, it’s worth making time for – even if that means timing kisses with the regularity of toothbrushing.

The result is no surprise. It’s all too easy to stay distracted by our own concerns as we rush to and fro, absorbed in the business of our separate lives at home. But, “by acting more loving,” she writes, “I made myself feel loving.” At the same time, she made her loved ones feel more loved. Simple, right?

I’m charmed by the idea of more kissing. This most definitely does not feel like a “project,” more like a gentle reminder of a truth I already know and hold close to my heart: that a good life isn’t about moving fast to get to some place better, it’s more often about slowing down and fully embracing what’s right in front of me. Especially the very people I profess to love most of all. The thought of more kissing made my heart do a happy little somersault. No equipment necessary; no new items on the to-do list. (I already have lips. And I figured I could remember to kiss Steve and my boys more times throughout the day without writing it down.)

When I finally turned to the beginning of the book and started to read, I understood right away why Gretchen has become a kind of happiness guru to the masses. She writes simply and honestly about what it means to live well on this earth. She backs her observations up with wonderful personal anecdotes and reflections, the kinds of stories your smartest, most entertaining friend would share with you over a cup of tea. She moves and educates and digs deep – all the while reminding us that we don’t have to re-invent ourselves in order to feel more fulfilled. We can change our lives without changing our lives.

So, I’m with Margaret and Steve. I do love this book, and since I now have TWO brand new copies of Happier at Home, and since Margaret suggested we could spread some happiness in the world by giving more books away, this week I will send one person who comments below their own copy of Happier at Home.

I’m pretty sure that even if the notion of “More Kissing” doesn’t inspire you to action, or at least to some sort of inner shift, something else in these pages will. Perhaps you will resonate with: Underreact to a Problem, or Give Warm Greetings and Farewells, or Read the Manual (this one, alas, is NOT in my near future), or Guard My Children’s Free Time. As Gretchen points out, “Everyone’s idea of home, or happiness, is unique, but it’s the rare person who can’t benefit from a happiness project.” Now that I’ve read her fine book, I have to say, I absolutely agree.

P.S. I had just decided that more kissing was the path for me. That night, I went to my bookshelf in search of a bit of poetry to read before falling asleep. I took Daniel Ladinsky’s lovely red book, Love Poems from God, to bed with me (a gift, as it happens, from Margaret). The poem I opened to was this:

One regret, dear world, that I am determined not to have when I am lying on my death bed is that I did not kiss you enough.
~ Hafiz, trans. Daniel Ladinsky

How to Win the Books

To triple your chances to win Happier at Home, Margaret Roach of A Way to Garden and her friend Pam Kueber of RetroRenovation and I each have a copy of the book to share. All of us are what could be described as home-centric, which is why we decided to do this three-way blog event together. (Besides, there’s happiness in togetherness, right?)

Simply comment below by sharing some way you’ve boosted your happiness at home, then copy your comment to all three blogs (to Margaret’s blog here and to RetroRenovation.com at this link) and improve your odds. Feeling shy? Just say, “Count me in” if so. Your entry will be official.

Winners will be chosen at random after entries close at midnight on Sunday, September 16. Good luck to all—and much happiness in your home and garden, from which all blessings flow.

(Disclosure: Books bought from Amazon links here yield a small commission, which I use to buy books for future giveaways.)

for my reflections & inspiration

your comments

  1. Ah, I have increased my happiness at home by clearing out the things we do not regularly use, or truly love, or ideally, both. We have moved closet by closet, drawer by drawer, room by room, and released to others, to charity, to the curb so much that was cluttering our spaces. The result has been I believe, more clear thinking, more art making, more rest, more order and peace.

    Oh, I’d love to win this book!

  2. I’ve boosted my happiness at home by truly embracing my position here. I have a large family and many demands on my time. I think that happiness for me means doing it all and doing it well. That said, I’d better go catch up on my morning tasks. Can’t wait to read this book!

  3. Lighting candles and pandora soothing music 4 me!

  4. Would like to receive a copy of Happier at Home.

  5. I’m happier at home when the clutter is cleared (a weekly challenge), I’ve made jelly or jam, and my kitty Daiseymae is curled up in my arm, sleeping beside me.
    thanks for the giveaway Katrina.

  6. There always seems to be a certain something that puts a kink in my goal of having a home free of dirt and drama, where all is well organized and running efficiently. Instead, I am learning to embrace it just the way it is. Not an easy thing to learn, by the way! I am happiest though when I know that I’ve done something daily to make it a great place to live – whether it is doing a load of laundry or cooking a new recipe for my family to try.

  7. I’m happier when the cooler weather allows me to turn the oven on and crank out some home-baked goodness after a long summer of avoiding the additional heat. Nothing like a lived-in kitchen and the scent of fresh food to make a home feel happy.

  8. I’m happy at home when things are quiet and I know everyone is OK, where ever they are.

  9. Tricia says:
    September 10, 2012 at 3:20 pm

    I’m always happier at home, where I am free to play in my yard, or play with my yarn stash. Home is where you can be free to display your true self!

  10. Today I am happy at home as it is the first time in 10 years that all 4 of my children are in school from 9:00-2:45. I feel like I accomplished so much in the hours they were gone. The aroma from the freshly baked cookies on my counter will also make my children happy when they walk in the door in a few minutes!

  11. Sarah Craighead Dedmon says:

    Yay! I am always happier at home, too. So many fun things todo, including homeschooling our two boys.

  12. I’m happier at home when I remember to Stop, Breathe, Look around me & allow myself to Feel every blessing in my life.

    Oh – & Kissing does it for me as well!

  13. I am trying to sew more because it makes me so happy to play with fabric.

  14. Count me in.

  15. Patti Pitcher says:

    Just being here, right now with what is and of course, listening to Sarah Blacker singing just about anything https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mx9QoTZWotI&feature=related

    There is no secret to being happier other than letting go of the expectation that anything will be different than it is right this second.

    great post, K xoxo love to read the book.

  16. I am happier at home when I let some things go — I have found that nobody will actually die if I skip a day of laundry…and I have learned that vacuuming the dog hair up tomorrow vs. right away doesn’t really reduce the amount of dog hair! So the new motto is to “Let some things go!”

  17. I’m happiest at home when I’ve done something that will make someone smile. Whether it’s a surprise, fulfilling a promise, a random act of kindness, or creating something beautiful, that’s my favorite motivation. Sometimes it’s the little things that make all the difference, which is why Happier At Home sounds like it will be a wonderful book. Thanks for the offer; I’d love to win a copy!

  18. After 3 1/2 years of having our grown son at home while he worked, and our daughter at college, both left in August “for good” (and yes, everyone tells me they will be back!). Our son has gone half way across the country to pursue his doctoral studies for a minimum of 5 years, and our daughter had headed to law school an hour away. Full house to empty nest overnight. As hard as it was to see them leave for college, I could never have imagined how hard it would be to see them leave for the rest of their lives. I have increased the happiness in my home by being grateful that my children are happy and productive, and by counting all of the many blessings that surround me each day – a beautiful home, loving family, food on the table, and good health to enjoy it all. I wholeheartedly recommend The Happiness Project, and look forward to reading Happier at Home!

  19. I have learned that my attitude effects everyone else in my home so i try to always have a kind word and a hot meal available each day. A smile can change the course of someone’s day.

  20. Happier at home now that I learned to say No to so many events that used to take me away from family.

  21. Allowing myself time each night to read a book while curled up on my well worn chair, preferrably while sipping a glass of wine!

  22. I’ve boosted my happiness at home by marrying my husband. We’ve purchased a house together, and no place has ever felt more like home.

  23. I’d love to win this book–sounds insightful.

    For me, I’ve increased my happiness by minimizing my gardening chores after memorial day and before labor day. I really hate being out in the hot, sticky days of July and August, so I do only what I REALLY need to do then–and I maximize my garden time in the beautiful April, May, early June, and September/October weather instead.

  24. Julie Sochacki says:

    Before I finished reading your blog, Katrina, I heard the garage door open! I quickly ran into our bedroom, brushed my teeth, greeted my husband at the door and kissed him as passionately as when we were on our first date :) What a way to start an evening together! Thank you!

  25. Finding “me” time by reading in our flower garden.

  26. Ive decided to make myself happier at home by finding a small dog to adopt. I already have a big dog, but he won’t sit in my lap or cuddle! So, having finally won my husband over to the idea, I’m getting a second dog!!

  27. Count me in!

    The way I’ve made our home happier is to reduce my nagging.

  28. I’ve been quoting your blog since I joined recently, and I’ve encouraged friends that love your book to join in the conversation. Coincidentally, I just ran across this book and bought it yesterday! It is not lost on me that you are recommending this book. I have felt happiness with both-reading your blog and finding this book! I so look forward to reading it and gaining more calmness and contentedness-from flipping through the pages thus far, I know I will! So, if I should win a copy, I will quickly share it with others that I know will benefit from this uplifting read also…thank you!

  29. I am happier at home by embracing this new point in my life. After the loss of a part-time job, then our first one off to college, it was a bit of a struggle at first. But….more time to rejoice in my job of wife/mother, more time to RELAX with my family….more time to be a home economist to make ends meet without the extra income…. Happier all around!

  30. I read the Happiness Project this past spring, and really enjoyed it, so I am happy to see another book by Gretchen! It’s good to be reminded of the simple things we often lose sight of.

  31. Count me in…in my home and family, heartbeats of my life!

  32. Elena Stahl says:

    “All blessings” flow from God not homes and gardens.

  33. Count me in! I’d love to win this book.

  34. I am finding some new happiness at home by transforming myself into more of a grandmother figure than stepmother. After an unpleasant custody situation resulting in less frequent visits with my husband’s 12 year old daughter, we decided to focus on having fun when we have her rather than spending our limited time trying to fit in all of the ‘parenting’ we’re so uptight about! Your book arrived in our lives at just the right time… we’re taking a cue from you and backing off, stressing less, not fearing the future – and instead just trying to spend quality time together while she still wants to spend time with us!

  35. I have increased my happiness at home and elsewhere by reading and taking to heart the lessons in Cami Walker’s book 29 Gifts: How a Month of Giving Can Change Your Life. I joined the web site http://www.29gifts.org/. By participating (over and over again)in the “29 Day Giving Challenge” I have found more happiness in my life both at home elsewhere. My view of giving has broadend and I have learned that gifts can be very simple gestures when given with care and intention. This attitude has opened up a new world for e. I have also learned that even our routine chores can be gifts when given in the lite of love and service. Thank you for your gifts of friendship and wisdom that you share in your books and blogs.

  36. Oh for once I don’t feel behind..I’m a kisser! :) xo

  37. Love the idea of more kissing. Our little library is unlikely to get this book so a copy would be lovely! thanks for the giveaway.

  38. My happiness at home includes the subject of this blog…BOOKS, BOOKS, and more BOOKS! I’m surrounded by them! And I actually had this new one in my hands yesterday while shopping and thought to myself that I needed to wait to make another book purchase. Maybe not…

  39. Deanna Nihill says:

    I’m happier at home when I take time to stop and kiss and snuggle my dog. He seems to wait for these small acts of love and when I take the time throughout the day to share some warmth with him, I feel happier!

  40. An email telling me that a new blog from Katrina brings me happiness. It forces me to slow the speed of life down in order to breath in new awareness, insight, and inspiration so that I can begin again with new appreciation of what I already have.

    Owning a book you recommend would be great!

  41. Jackie Robledo says:

    I’m happier at home when I have a series of activities that allow me to pursue all my interests and have a balanced life. Thanks for the opportunity to win the book, love your posts! :-)

  42. This is a book I would NEVER pick up. So I really appreciated your review. I saw it at the library and now my curiosity is piqued!

    PS How was the walk??

  43. Now I am going to have to read both these book. I love the idea of kissing more.

  44. Well, I fancy myself to be quite happy…but there is always room for a little more happiness around here :-)

  45. Count me in!

  46. Count me in! I loved The Happiness Project and would love to read this book.

  47. Beth Berger says:

    I am just plain happier at home-mt true nature.

  48. I read Gretchen’s book The Happiness Project last summer. Would love to read her new book!

  49. I have kept a gratitude journal, and now my family and I keep one by sharing our gratitudes – our joys aloud each day. Our motto is – try to find joy in each day and help someone who needs it. Be grateful. Be kind. Be strong. Repeat.

  50. Ah, kissing… Why is it easier to do this with my beloved dogs than with my dear husband? I am making an effort… even if I don’t receive a much anticipated book, I am still receiving a wonderful prize…. I don’t remember my husband’s lips being so wonderful—–

  51. Janice MacDowell says:

    I am always happier at home when I get to retreat to my loft where I have created my “sanctuary”, my art/painting room. I can spend all day absorbed in my watercolors and once I’m finished I often find myself saying “wow…I did that!!?? I am an artist!”

  52. Count me in too!

  53. jen goldman says:

    loved the post and would love to win this book. I saw her speak once last-and if you send it to me I’ll spread the dharma:)

  54. am working on being happier at home, and one of the ways I’m doing this is to make sure to park the car, and then pick up my children from school instead of zipping through the car pool line. Leaving the car behind, and greeting them personally allows for more hugs and kisses as we begin the transition back to home. This was an idea from another blog (can’t remember whose), and would love to have more happiness projects.

  55. Katrina,
    Your blogs have been a breath of fresh air! I love your writing…it always touches my heart. After losing my 31 year old daughter Megan “Mia”, last year, I didn’t really like living in my home with so many memories of her. So I have set out to totally reinvent my nest. New flooring, paint, landscaping, a new kitty cat named after my daughter “Mia” and so far so good. The best part has been purging all the “stuff”. My heart feels lighter and happier as I hear my daughter whisper in my ear…”good job Mom, I love it!!” LOL! She told me I was a “hoarder” and that we needed to clean out my house. She helped me by flooding my downstairs with a broken water heater! Am going to tell my husband tonight about the kissing twice a day, and my 30 year old son is back home with us temporarily and I am going to include him in this kissing project also! Thank you! :)

  56. As usual,your blog post coincides with something in my own world. I had just been thinking how lucky I was that my two sons (only 7 & 11) still let me kiss them frequently, if only on the top of their heads. I am grateful for those moments of love and knowing that their love allows mine. Thank you for reminding me to keep on kissing them (and their dad too).

  57. I really enjoyed “The Happiness Project,” and would love a chance to win a copy of her newest book (someday I’m going to win one of your giveaways!). I’ve recently taken a hiatus from social media, and I shut the computer before dinner and don’t open it again until I’ve had a chance to ease into my day the next morning by having a cup of coffee and writing in my journal. For me, this small shift has had huge dividends in terms of creating a happier, calmer, more focused home sphere (I started to get worried when my daughter ran up to a memorial marker in the park, ran her fingers over the letters, and said, “I’m checking my email!”). I’m not sure I’ll ever go back to Facebook!

  58. I loved The Happiness Project, so receiving a copy of her new book would be fantastic! I am happier at home when the clutter is cleared away and I have time to sit and read a good book!

  59. I don’t just drink my coffee. I sit and savor it for 15 minutes without interruptions!

  60. Guarding our family dinner time brings us so much happiness and hopefully is filling our kids with good memories. Am excited to hear about this book. Thanks!

  61. I’ve been trying something that I’ve taken for granted most of my life and have only recently come to appreciate. My aunt has always taken the time to really greet me when I arrive at her house to visit; and when I leave, she stands at her door, waving until she can’t see my car anymore as I drive away. It always makes me feel that she really sees me, and it’s a very different experience than when someone gives you a quick hello without making eye contact. Her warmth and love greet me when I arrive and send me on my way when I go. I’ve tried to do the same with my guests, friends and family (though I don’t normally kiss my guests or friends!:)) It really does make a difference if you step away from what you’re doing to look your husband/sons/daughters in the eye and give them a hug and kiss when they arrive. It’s a true homecoming. I’m happy to hear about Gretchen’s new book. I really liked her first one. Thank you Katrina for doing this!

  62. Believe it or not, I started doing laundry and dishes twice a week each. I’m a live-at-home college student who was never expected to do chores growing up. Both activities give me a really nice grounded feeling, and keep me from vegging out in front of either the tv or the computer.

  63. Saying yes.

  64. I boost my happiness by sharing good books with others. I loved your book, Gift Of An Ordinary Day and I shared mine with the person who cuts my hair. She just sent me a thank you text saying she loves the book. It’s a great way to spread happiness. Thanks for the chance to win another great book!

  65. Anything you (and Margaret) endorse as helping people lead happier lives and raising happier families is a must read for me!

  66. Count me in. I’d love a copy! Thanks.

  67. Erica Jolles says:

    When I think of the word “home” I don’t necessarily think of a tangible thing (which is ironic as I am a Realtor). But for me…the word home means my family. No matter where I may be…if I am surrounded by my two sons (ages 8 & 11) and my husband — I am home. On that note…I am trying to be more present and appreciative of the time we do spend together!!

  68. I would be grateful to receive a copy of this book.

  69. peggy dlugos says:

    I sleep with the windows open so the last thing I hear at night is the crickets, and the first thing I hear in the morning is the birds.

  70. I’m happier at home when I start the day kissing my smiling 1 year old daughter and telling her “good morning”, then in the evening putting her to bed at night with a kiss and ” good night, sweet dreams, I love you.” and finishing the day by writing in the journal I keep for her about the moments in that day, such as: the way she reached for me from the high chair, covered in watermelon juice, and placed her chilled hands on each side of my face and leaned her head against mine. She smelled like sunscreen, watermelon, and sunlight. My heart swelled with love and gratitude.

  71. I am happier at home when I accomplish the to do list and personal goals I have set out to do for that day,so then feel calmer and more put together to gather my kids and take the time out to read books, watch a movie,play polly pockets or just listen to my 4 kids as they talk about the joy and trials of their day, and then at the end of the day with a big sigh reflect back on the day and feel good that I don’t have many regrets of what I didn’t do and should’ve done…. that is happiness, peace and accomplishment.

  72. I listen to soothing music on Pandora and wear noise-cancelling headphones so I don’t hear unnecessary background noise.

  73. Leslie Ender says:

    Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! … I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.
    —Philippians 4:4, 12
    I try and live in a state of thankfulness for every sweet and beautiful thing around me despite my circumstances!

  74. This is Shelly from India (very different from your place indeed). As I live in a joint family (with my in-laws), I think that ADDS a lot of happiness to my life. I have an year old daughter and I feel content – she’s getting to be loved by her doting grandparents while living with them. And thats the fun-funda for my home :)

    I wish I receive the book to make my place more beautiful, thanks.

  75. Count me in too!

  76. I am happy at home in the early morning hours, sipping coffee on the couch as the sun comes up and my family is safely asleep in their beds. I love reading yur blog and both your books. Thank you!

  77. I have become happier at home by spending more time making my house, yard, and garden what I wished it was, and less time thinking about my ideal home or doing other things to avoid doing the actual repair/clean-up/other tasks.

  78. Burndett Andres says:

    I’ve boosted by happiness by going to bed earlier and getting up at dawn. It’s amazing!

  79. Count me in! I would love to have some ideas to help me create more happiness and peace in my home. I think I will start with more kisses…

  80. i’m happier at home when everything is in it’s place.

  81. Happiness washes over me the moment I step through my doorway. My home is my sanctuary, my base, my place of comfort and reflection. I venture forth each day to connect with nature and people, both very necessary to my well-being, and both sustained by the solidity of home.

  82. What’s the little saying. . . When Mamma isn’t happy, no one is happy! Isn’t that true? My eagerness and happiness to greet each day, really do affect my children and husband!

  83. I so enjoy reading your posts.I would love to read a copy of Happier at Home.

  84. Laurie Kiely says:

    I feel happier when I remember to BE GRATEFUL!

  85. We try to have at least one meal together as a family everyday.

  86. Incense, quiet time, and snuggles with the kids!

    Thanks for sharing.

  87. I have recently found myself and my two boys in transition between homes, and as unsettling as it has been, we are able to help one another with understanding and kindness simply by listening to each other.

  88. thank you for this beautiful and generous offering, katrina. deeply grateful to and for you. our little tribe has decided to create space for daily quiet time, time together in silence and to gather daily for collective storytime (we have always done this, but with busy schedules our wholehearted intention is not always realized). silence and story. sweet togetherness.

    p.s. kissing happens often with us (as puerto ricans are one of those big kissings cultures). muah.

  89. With two boys at home (11 & 13), I feel happy when they listen! I love them to death, but I often feel like a broken record “reminding” them, mainly my oldest, to do the most basic of things…I am also happy when we can sit and share a meal and disucss our day, and what we learned..we all learn something every single day, often at that moment at the table.

  90. When I come home from work, as I get out of my car, I lightly brush off my arms and chest as if to brush away anything that is stuck to me from the day. It’s a small energy clearing gesture that makes me smile and sets the tone for me to enter my “sanctuary”. It reminds that it is my choice alone how I choose to be. :)

  91. I’m happier at home when its fall and I can sit on the front stoop with my husband and kitty enjoying a mug of hot chocolate and watching the sun go down! Love the giveaway!

  92. My husband and I were invited to my sons home for dinner last night and he said- Mom I have a little gift for you. I opened it and there was The Happiness Project book! He said I know that you are happy Mom, but I thought you would love this book. AND, when you are done reading it, I would like to read it.
    What a great gift from my 49 yr old son that knows me well.
    I love to be home in my Perennial garden and just sit and listen to the nature all around and watch the birds and butterflys. It makes me greatful to have eyes, ears and a nose. I have many blessings!
    Now, on with more kissing. Peace

  93. As mom and wife I’ve bounced from MI to NH and back again trying to keep hubby and family happy. Now that children are gown and there’s no more bouncing, I’ve felt lost at times and excited at times to find more of “me”. The search continues and reading your blog helps me to feel that I’m not alone in this struggle. Thanks for your support!

  94. I am happier at home when
    I am cooking and “nesting”!

  95. Ashley Baisley says:

    Happier at home when I sit on my porch with tea and your blog while the baby naps….instead of crashing around the house trying to be “productive”

  96. I left a toxic job in the end of January and have been home since. I have boosted my happiness at home by learning to do “work” in a different way. By helping friends and relatives when I couldn’t before because I was always at work. By cleaning out closets and painting and gardening. I have made more dinners and just enjoyed being present. By reading authors that inspire me to just be. Yesterday, as I filled SIX yard waste bags of weeds and overgrowth from my front beds after a hot summer of neglect, I felt so good about the process. It was even sort of symbolic for me of the “yuck” that I have been working on purging personally.

  97. I try to keep the dining table clear. It stresses me out to walk in the door and see piles all over it!

  98. Right now we are going through a very hard time in life, and i find that the best way to get through it is control what i CAN control, by sticking to as much of a routine as possible and also exercising, eating right, and taking vitamins.

  99. Count me in!

  100. Sarah Swanner says:

    I’m happier when I’m organized and have a gameplan to go by.

  101. Jennifer Cheatham says:

    My husband and I recently saw Meryl Streep’s new movie, Hope Springs. It shook us both to our core. The basic premise is a marriage that lost some steam during the child rearing years and never regained it. It seemed so relatable. There was never an affair or unkindness…just a general drifting apart. We know how easy it is to forget the little things or be scorekeepers in marriage, especially when your days and evenings are consumed with children and their schedules. After seeing this movie, my husband and I once again agreed to remember the little things, kissing when leaving and returning, making our relationship a priority and to remember not to stay so busy that we forget to be grateful for our life, our precious family and each other.
    Count me in!

  102. I try to be happier at home by realizing that I am content with what I have and don’t need to be out there seeking more stuff, or recognition, or money.

  103. I’m happier when I have free time to look forward to. Life is much less stressful that way!

  104. I’m happy at home when everyone is home!!

  105. I just ordered my copy a couple days ago! I didn’t love The Happiness Project while I was first reading it, and then I gave it to my mom, and to friends, because I couldn’t stop quoting from it and wanting to talk about it.

    I’d love another copy to gift my neighbor so we could read it together.

    In my own home, setting up little reminders have helped me so much…I tend to get lost in my thoughts, even in our small house. So having little reminders, even if it’s just the yellow mug I keep my cell phone in, or the white board with my boys’ schedule, I feel more relaxed at home because there is a safety net set up to help my wandering mind.

  106. I just ordered my copy a couple days ago! I didn’t love The Happiness Project while I was first reading it, and then I gave it to my mom, and to friends, because I couldn’t stop quoting from it and wanting to talk about it.

    I’d love another copy to gift my neighbor so we could read it together.

    In my own home, setting up little reminders have helped me so much…I tend to get lost in my thoughts, even in our small house. So having little reminders, even if it’s just the yellow mug I keep my cell phone in, or the white board with my boys’ schedule, I feel more relaxed at home because there is a safety net set up to help my wandering mind.

  107. I am happier at home when I follow the one minute rule (and when I can get the husband to follow it too!) – anything that takes one minute or less (to put something away, clean something up, etc.) is done right away. Then all those little things aren’t building up into a whole lot of things that I shouldn’t even have to think about again!

  108. This is my very first comment. Count me in. I feel I am in desperate need of the book. I have four kids at home (23, 17 and 9 year old twins). Life can be so stressful at times but I do not want to go to my deathbed with so much regrets. I want to sleep at night knowing I lived my life the best way I could and shared happiness to everyone I met.

  109. I am happier by slowing down as I read your posts and your writings, including my dog-eared copy of the gift of an ordinary day. And I’m trying the kissing route!!

  110. Count me in! would love a copy of the book!

  111. After I read Gretchen’s 1st Happiness Project book, a few years ago, I started making my bed EVERY morning. It made a huge difference in how I felt when I came home again later in the day. This simple act just makes me feel a little lighter!

  112. I’m happier at home when I decide to stop and take a break from whatever I’m doing to go outside and walk my dog. Too often I find myself living on auto-pilot and not appreciating the world around me. Walking with a very curious, happy dog can really rejuvenate your soul.

  113. We boosted our happiness by downsizing our apartment right before having our second child. Living in closer quarters with just the essentials helps us continue to grow as a love-focused family.

  114. I have increased my happiness at home by SIMPLIFYING everything. Less clutter, few decisions on what to buy (nothing… unless it replaces something worn out or broken) and hiring someone to do what I don’t have time for! It really works for me.

  115. This sounds like a wonderful book! More kissing…who can’t agree with that??!!! Xoxoxo

  116. Inspired by your book, Katrina, I’m happier at home because I am again appreciating all the moments I know won’t last forever. I am seeing my children and husband through new eyes and remembering to enjoy myself, my family and my life, NOW.

    Oh, and I’d love to win Gretchen Rubin’s book!

  117. A book that tells me how to “Underreact to a Problem”? Yes, please!!

    Both books sound wonderful. Looking forward to them.

  118. I’m all for more kissing! and hugging!

  119. Live simply, laugh often

  120. I’m happiest when we have places for things, and things are in their places. We are currently up to our ears in excess possessions, many inherited from my dear husband’s brother, whom we lost last year. The sale of his home has brought many useful, but unneeded items to us – we are very grateful for those items we are able to use, and to be able to share others with folks who can put them to good use. We’re slowly finding homes for many items which we don’t need duplicates for among family and friends, any by donation — we fervently hope to avoid the dreaded garage sale. As we slowly bring sanity and order back to our small home, I think Gretchen’s new book would be a delightful addition to those possessions which we have chosen to keep!

  121. There could never be too much happiness at home! I’d like to sqeeze more in among the bill paying, cleaning, cooking, laundry, etc. I’m open to more happiness!


  122. Count me in.

  123. It makes me happy to lighten the closets and basement by giving away things I no longer need or use.

  124. This sounds lovely…
    One fun way we’ve increased happiness in our home is that we recently adopted a dog and 2 kittens! I look forward to learning more ideas to incorporate into our lives.

  125. Jeanie Weathington says:

    I say “Bye! Have a great day! I love you!” and blow kisses to my kids every morning before they leave. I realized, however, that I wasn’t sharing that same sentiment with my husband. So, I started to add him to the line for my byes and kisses. I think it’s helped us connect more and it shows the kids that we are important to each other.

  126. I’m happier when my counters are clean.

  127. Count me in and thank you.

  128. I loved the Happiness Project and would love to read its sequel. Count me in, please!

  129. One way I like to bring happiness into the home is baking with my kids. I love seeing them proud of themselves as they measure and dump the flour in the bowl, mix it up, and then pull the final product out of the oven. Plus, it smells happy afterwards!

  130. I love these ideas–the kissing one puts the emphasis where it really should be!

  131. Diane Bascom says:

    I’m happy at home when I hear from my kids, who are away at school. It’s reassuring to hear they are doing well and thinking of their parents! I also look forward to reading your blogs.

    I would love to read Gretchen’s new book.

  132. i’m happier when I’m in the garden working the soil.

  133. I’m happier at home when I have friends and loved ones sharing my space with me. I love time to myself but I love the company of people with whom I am truly comfortable. Good food and drink inside by the fire or outside on a clear night with friends = happiness!

  134. Charlie Benedick says:

    Awww! You read my mind again! I am organizing, throwing crap out (why did I save orange juice cartons? I’ll remember when they are all gone and I need one!) I am trying to select a new paint color for my front entry. I need a steel gray/bluish green. It won’t be that awful blue my neighbor used will it? Will it look good with a Christmas wreath, or an Easter basket or a Fourth of July banner? I’ve already overwhelmed myself and the paint chips are scattered across the front porch…. I’m happiest when someone else picks out the paint color!
    I am happiest when I slow down with my camera in hand. Instead of looking at what is wrong with my garden, I stop to see what is beautiful. I ponder about which plants to move, leave alone or heaven forbid! Give up on! I gaze at it like I’m seeing it for the first time, and finally… I smile and chuckle. It never ends, but if I have just a few moments of this bliss, I can deal with it. I’m happiest when I just “let it be”.

  135. Linda Clark says:

    I’m happy at home while relaxing with my animals.

  136. Make room for whimsey. A ceramic frog in the corner, a favorite doll from your childhood, a child-size chair.

  137. Count me in!!!

  138. I am happier at home when everything is in its place. No clutter! Then I get to do what I want, garden, cook, read a book, nap, walk with the dog……

  139. I’ve boosted my happiness at home by resigning from my job, getting chickens, planting a fall garden, and writing about my encounters with nature.

  140. I’m happier at home when I know there is a back-up supply of coffee.

  141. I’ve boosted my happiness at home by finally getting hot water after six years of living without. Suburban homesteading has made me appreciate a lot of things I’d taken for granted over the years…like having hot water!

  142. I’m happy at home when it is a snow day. I can stay in my pj’s and cook pasta w my roasted toms stashed in the freezer. I can enjoy a little of summer and think of next year’s garden.

  143. I’m happier at home when I can make supper with veggies grown in my own back yard, with flowers on the table picked from my own back yard, and my husband sitting next to me, who has just finished working with me in our own back yard

  144. I am happy when all is in its place or when I have a new project or when surrounded by family.

  145. Kim in Nebraska says:

    I’m happier when we finally get a good soaking rain like last night. I can hear my garden & yard breathing a sigh of relief :)

  146. I’m happiest surrounded by family and friends!

  147. I am happiest at home when I feel prepared – I know what is for dinner, something is bubbling on the stove or cooling on the counter, when we have had enough rain so my garden is not dying amidst watering restrictions, when I remember my 11th grade trigonometry adequately to help my nervous teen study for a big test. When I am prepared ‘I can be of service to those around me and that – with a good book and dark chocolate – makes me happy.

  148. I’m happy when I have a completely unscheduled day and all the ingredients on hand to make my favorite vegetable soup. Having lunch on the porch and nap with Justin (my beloved Cocker Spaniel) puts the happiness grade over the top.

  149. I am happiest when my bed is made and my house is straight. Not cleaned within an inch of its life – that rarely happens – but picked up. Visual order helps counteract whatever mental messes I’m in and the balance is important to a day well begun.

  150. Cynthia Landers says:

    I love good smells in my home so I always have Yankee Candles burning, a row of cuttings on the table rooting, and beautiful music playing.

  151. I often find myself grinning inexplicably while chopping vegetables. Sniffing the tulsi (holy basil), watering from my rainwater tank, and cuddling up with my man in the morning are all high on the happiness list.

  152. I’m happier at home since I painted my bedroom red and put my clawfoot tub in the master bath. I love taking baths and my bedroom reflects who I am really. Now, for the garden…

  153. I indulge in the 30 second hug … just stand and hug a special someone for 30 seconds. It forces you to center and really slow down, in just 30 seconds. It’s amazing.

  154. On Sunday, I make prepare enough rice and quinoa along with steamed veggies sautéed with garlic and onion for lunches for the next few work days. It helps me to eat healthier because it’s ready to go!

  155. Can’t wait to read the book!

  156. Count me in.

  157. So interesting that so many women wrote about keeping their homes neat and tidy and clutter free. I feel that I have been working on that the past few months, and leaving for work this morning, I was happy to walk by clean, organized bedrooms upstairs, and shut my back door on a scrubbed kitchen. Having my external environment organized and clean somehow makes my mental state clearer and less distracted. The fall is also a bittersweet time for me, and I certainly shared your sadness at school’s beginning, when my children were home. I’m already feeling the darker mornings and earlier nights!

  158. That was a beautiful post. I am on Gretchen’s email list and find her very inspiring. I can relate to just about everything Margaret said in that post… I am a true homebody and my husband always laughs that he drives my car more than I do! A perfectly successful day for me being home all day tending to the “home arts” especially my garden and then meeting my sister with my dogs for a long walk:). Home is where my heart is and when I am away I miss it!

  159. How I laughed at the paper towels! This is the bane of my existence because it’s my husband’s job to stock them and he clearly thinks it’s OK to run out of them. I am always telling him—buy a year’s supply!!!! Yes. That makes me happy too!
    I am happiest at home when I have a cat on my lap, I am reading a great book, watching a fun movie, my kids are playing nicely and humming along. Being by a window in winter on a sunny day and having the sun warm you is amazing. As is having a fall breeze cruise through the house just after a hot summer.

  160. Tina Knezevic says:

    I am so much happier when I am either gardening, cleaning, organizing, cooking, baking, crocheting, sewing, crafting, painting or just entertaining my friends and family in my fabulous home. My husband and I just finished our brand new living room and we are so very happy how great it turned out with all the hard work and determination to make it look just right!

  161. I’m happiest when our daughter is home!

  162. Jeanne Jacob says:

    I’m happier at home now that we’ve moved house (just 3 weeks ago) and I have a garden that looks out onto the woods. From my bedroom’s tall French windows I can see small birds feeding on the yew’s red berries and wood pigeons sampling ripe elderberries. (I hope the pigeons leave us some for making into cordial – it’s supposed to be good for coughs). For the past week I’ve been ill, but staying home has acquainted me with all the activity out in the garden. Birds whose names I have yet to discover fly in and out, singing or calling out, as they peck at fruit or insects; one red squirrel (unlike American ones, European ones are red) hops and glides over branches, from a tall poplar over to a Juneberry (the first tree to sport coloured leaves) to search for nuts in the hazel hedge. My camera is ready to hand and I’ve photographed a wood pigeon and possibly a sparrow, but have yet to catch the elusive squirrel. Now that I’ve become more attuned to the wildlife in the back garden, I’m revising the all-wild-rose hedge I had initially planned to a mixed one of roses with big hips (Rosa glauca, Rosa sweginzowii macrocarpa), blackthorn, and other plants to feed and shelter them throughout the year, especially the winter. The blackthorn in particular will be much appreciated by nightingales, which I’ve read prefer to build their nests in it, and which I’m trying to attract back into this area, as the little lane where I live is named after them.

  163. Sue Schwartz says:

    I’m happier at home when I have a stack of unread library books, a bag of scones from Weaver St Mkt, and some good dark chocolate bars.

  164. I’m happy at home when it’s cloudy and cold outside and I’m in the kitchen working on a loaf of bread that I can slather butter all over when it comes out of the oven

  165. Diane Granic says:

    The best thing I ever did was to quit caring about delighting other people with my home, and start delighting ME! No more magazine-picture standards. Comfortable, with the things I love and use the most easy accesible, and neat and attractive to MY EYES! Oh, and my husband gets a vote too.

  166. I’m happy when I can open the windows WIDE, and let the fresh air in, after a summer of air conditioning, or a winter of heat. Ahhh.

  167. I am happier when I channel my mother. She truly found happiness in the extraordinary in the ordinary.

  168. I would love this book! I am happier at home now that I make time just for myself!

  169. I’m happier at home when I can see (and smell) my childhood teddy bear, so I keep him on a miniature chair on a bureau in our bedroom. I’m 43 years old with two sons and it *still* makes me happy to touch that bear.

  170. I’m happier when I’m wearing socks. Warm feet make a big difference.

  171. —–so happy when I’m making pesto with all of the basil in my garden and roasting my San Marzano tomatoes because I know in the cold of winter we’ll be savoring every bite!!!

  172. I’m happiest at home when I’m gardening, cooking or reading a good book.

  173. I am happier at home when I empty the wastebaskets!

  174. BlueSwimmer says:

    I’m happiest when I have a dog on my lap and a book in my hand!

  175. I am happy when my kitchen counter is clean, evenly dry, dishes put away, sink empty–”clear the decks” as my grandmother used to say. It makes me even happier when it’s time to start my dinner creations.

  176. I’m happier when I am surrounded at the dinner table by my grandchildren, my mom, my daughter and her husband and my husband, not particularly in that orde, eating food that came from the garden and from the water around us.

  177. I am happiest at home when I see bugs. It reminds me that nature endures, even in light of the billions of pounds of pesticides sprayed every year in every corner of the earth.

  178. ruth lowery says:

    Please count me in :)

  179. “Count me in”

  180. I’m happy when I’ve cooked something that tastes amazing for my family, knowing that I made it from a collection of ingredients that are nothing by themselves, but wonderfully delicious when blended together. Working hard to find tasty recipes for my family is one way that I show my love for them.

  181. Sandy Douglass Abalos says:

    I’m happy when I see the first glimpse of green sprouting from the soil where I planted seeds for my fall garden. I’m happier when the plants grow & thrive under my care. I’m happiest when I am able to harvest produce from the seeds I have sown & prepare a fresh, healthy vegetable dish for my husband to enjoy with me.

  182. marypat acquaviva says:

    Im happiest at home with a good book and something cooking that I grew that smells wonderful

  183. I am happier at home when I have the opportunity to be there. I am 65 and I currently teach nursing Monday through Friday and run a small gift shop on weekends. Going home creates an “awe” moment for me.

  184. I am happier at home sitting in my back yard swing with a nice glass of sweet tea, watching the birds at the feeder, and enjoying the sounds of children playing in the neighborhood.

  185. I’m happier at home when clutter is picked up and surfaces are clean. And when my boys are occupied happily. And maybe even quietly {too much to ask?} Would love to read Gretchen’s latest book!

  186. Hanging bed sheets out in the sunshine on a crisp day, taking the time to make French Press Coffee, and having household items organized all make me happier at home. <3

  187. Jeni Powell says:

    I am happier with the humidity of our southern summer abating!

  188. I’m happier at home when I make my bed.

  189. Carolyn Beach says:

    I’m happier at home when I return from a trip or even just an errand and realize how lucky I am to have this much loved home to come back to.

  190. I’m happier at home when I make time for the things I love: cuddling with the kids, all of us in our PJs, reading books or playing Scrabble. My 7-year-old is obsessed with Scrabble–and he’s giving me some competition! Of course, I’m always happy planning the garden–sometimes, I’m not thrilled with the weed-pulling, compost-adding part of gardening, but the pleasure of growing food for my family and friends gives me much satisfaction. And of course, envisioning what the spring garden will look like after lusting over bulb catalogs always makes me happy. I’m definitely happiest at home.

  191. I’m happier at home because I spend most Sundays at home doing “life maintenance” — doing laundry, listening to the radio, and such. makes my whole week smoother.

  192. I’m happy when the weather is cooler and I think about making soup and apple crisp. The yard gets a bit messy as the leaves begin to fall, and it just seems right to accept some messiness.

  193. I am almost always happier and more comfortable at home, but sometimes leaving it for a while helps me to appreciate it that much more and inspires me to shake things up a little bit.

  194. Hopeful to be happier at home.

  195. I’m happier looking out of clean windows!

  196. I’m happy at home when the sun is out and the birds are chirping.

  197. Open the windows and let the cool breeze in.

  198. I am so very happy with my cup of coffee and my big comfy chair in the morning!

  199. RetroSandie says:

    I’m happy to have my two kitty girls to love and mush any time of the day!!!!! Thanks for this opportunity!!

  200. count me in!

  201. I am happy knowing that my partner enjoys the old house, the flower and vegetable gardens and the beaver pond out back as much as I do.

  202. Michelle Heron says:

    Hi Katrina,
    Great post! Thanks for sharing new ideas and new books with your readers. I continue to gift out your book, “Mitten Strings for God” and “Gift of an Ordinary Day” to new mothers, as it has helped me so in my own journey. So, 3 and a half years ago I made a vow with my husband to enjoy life more and even though the day to day can be a struggle with little ones, work and schedules….we have kissed more:) before each meal to be exact, we thank our food, and best of all play with our kids more. The laundry left unfolded, the crumbs linger on the table, the toys in the bath and on the floor, but we savor the moments of togetherness as a whole family.

  203. Gloria Gene says:

    I am happy undulating on the swing bed in my summer room, watching the dance of the gardens, with the changing seasons….knowing soon I will have to move inside to the warmth of winter, as the dance continues through the window glass…as.the dance of the gardens never ends…Gloria Gene

  204. I’m happy sharing my home with my grandchildren and helping strays (must have a sign on my door) and the sound of leaves in the fall.

  205. carole clarin says:

    For the past 2 years I have belonged to a CSA farm. Although just going there has boosted my happiness, discovering how to use veggies I had never before prepared and exploring many new recipes has definitely contributed to my happiness.

  206. I’m happier at home when I remember to stop and go out in my yard at sunset to watch my 4 hens go to bed. It’s an unspoken code among them, when the light level has gotten just low enough, they come out from where ever they’ve been pecking, sort of line up & march into the coop. They fuss at each other about who gets to roost where, then get quiet and seem very content. Makes me smile every time.

  207. Count me in please.

  208. Wow, can’t believe I met the deadline for this contest. I just finished reading your book, The Gift of an Ordinary Day, this morning and had to sit down at my computer to see if I could “find you”! Found your web page easily and started reading your blog….amazing! I am a mom of three grown sons, who have challenged me their whole lives as I have strived to be the best Mom to them that I could…I so identify with the stories in your book, Katrina, and found myself in tears many times while reading. Many of your words hit home to me, it was like chatting with a best friend, which some days I feel in extremely short supply of. Thank you for putting yourself out there for people like me who have found comfort and respite and peace in your story. You are a blessing. I can only think that winning this book about happiness would be the icing on the cake, and a real sign that things will indeed be okay, and life will proceed as it is intended, with all it’s joys and pinpricks jumbled up together, as it should be. And doesn’t everyone need more kissing, yes indeed! Thank you!

  209. I’m happier when the air is cool and the yard is full of goldfinches feeding on the coneflowers and stick verbena.

  210. count me in

  211. Acceptance is the way I boost my happiness.

    Accept a grimy sink full of unwashed dishes, a trash can full to overflowing, and a hallway littered with dirty laundry as long as I live with my grown son and husband. Accept that these are my triggers: my chest tightens, my breathing stops, and I want to scream accusations.

    Instead breathing in acceptance allows me to chose to clean or not, and for now I chose acceptance to live with these two who otherwise make me happy.

  212. Happier when I can see the seasons change…feeling blessed and happy in whatever the holiday…also love to feel the cozy feeling of a rainy day…feeling like a kid when it snows!

  213. I’m happy at home when he is vacuuming!

  214. When I sweep my kitchen floor before going to bed. Walking on a smooth, clean floor in the morning — no crumbs or mystery stuff sticking to my feet (small children in the house…debris coating the floor daily is a given) — makes it easier to transition into the day.

  215. I’m happier when I hug someone and we’re both wearing wool sweaters.

  216. I’m happy at home with a hot cup of tea on a quiet morning.

  217. I’m happier at home as each season changes into the next. I enjoy the transition from season to season. In spring, I long for summer. In winter I pine for spring…

  218. Cynthia Sumner says:

    I have a little slip of paper from a fortune cookie which says “Don’t pursue happiness, create it”. Since retiring, I am creating my happiness by working in my garden, volunteering at a nature center and running the local library used-book sale. New friends, new plants, new books to read….that’s happiness for me.

  219. I’m always happiest at home. It’s where I belong.

  220. happier when i get to watch the bats feed-flying at dusk.

  221. I’m happier when all my counters are clean and cleared off, so I can just jump into any baking or cooking project without first having to clean up. Sadly, this is almost never a reality. But I guess it would be a new goal to set!

  222. I’m happy at home when it is warm and cozy, I can open my windows for a little fresh air, and the smells of real foods are simmering somewhere!

  223. I retired from teaching this year. Never knew a September to be so lovely, so peaceful, so wonderful. I love being home.

  224. Thanks to Margaret for the link! A site I will be exploring . . .

  225. I am most happy when I bring the clothes in from the line and inhale the beautiful fresh air as I push my nose into the materials, I love the roughness of each piece in my hands and their sweet intoxicating scent; have 2 trashbags filled with clothes to take to goodwill after I have just cleaned out my closet; see the just vacuumed livingroom; and when my cats and dogs curl up together in the winter months creating the fluffiest and most unique living fur quilt.

  226. Home is where I am loved and accepted unconditionally – who wouldn’t want to be there?

  227. I’m happy at home when I have my health and can enjoy my family.

  228. Judy says:
    September 16, 2012 at 6:47 pm
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    I’m happiest at home in our 100 year old house. I tell people, ‘I live in the past and I’m very happy there’. Every day is a gift…enjoy it!

  229. I am happier when I stop to just be. We get so caught up in our never ending to-do lists, chores, errands and schedules. Sitting in my back yard smelling the basil in my garden while watching my large willows sway in the breeze at sunset brings an undefinable calmness. Pausing for a moment, I can fully appreciate the beauty of Earth and be thankful for my own little piece of this world.

  230. Martha White says:

    I am happy at home living simply.

  231. Sitting on my back deck in the glorious morning sunshine reveling in the joy of new day while wrapping my hands around and breathing in the aroma of a freshly brewed cup of coffee makes me happy at home.

  232. I had just ordered The Happiness Project and Happier at Home, when I came across your blog post. So, don’t enter my name (maybe the book has already been given out).

    I’ve just started The Happiness Project and love it already. And, your review makes me that much more excited to keep going with my own happiness project. I particuarly liked your words about being happy enough. Always room for more!


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