Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Joie de vivre

Keeping my joie de vivre is much easier when I take notice of the small pleasures around me.  Taking enjoyment in everyday life is the secret to happiness I think, more so than ‘big’ things.  Well both are good, but I try to appreciate the little things as well.

This morning I was checking out our small freezer to see if there was anything for dinner tonight (there was not) and I found a lone mini-croissant from not too long ago.  Yay!  I now have a yummy little bonus to have with my fresh fruit and raw nut breakfast.  I have it out thawing to go in the oven soon.

I am also feeling grateful because the house is lovely and tidy and clean and I already have the washing hung outside, so I feel like I have the whole day stretching in front of me to do with as I please.  Tomorrow I’m back at work but today, today is for (apart from a few household jobs) sewing, knitting, movie watching and general pottering.

Some days I find it hard to muster up any joie de vivre and know that I am not fun to be around, even I can’t stand myself.  I have a set of three tiny notebooks (with cute Montmartre and Parisienne line drawings on the covers) that my sister gave me and I am on to filling up the second one so far.

The notebooks are small enough to put in my shoulder-bag (which isn’t very big) and they are filled with uplifting and inspiring quotes that I have collected over time.  They might be a line from a movie, a phrase from a book, or a line from a blog or website.  They also include little goals that I think of and health plans I have for myself.

I read through one of my notebooks until I come across something that will cajole me into a better mood or make me realise I am being a spoiled brat.  Sometimes it happens within a split second which seems like a miracle.  It really is true that our mind precedes all else.  Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich has the secret right there in the title!

I remember hearing on an audio CD that you can’t just ‘make dinner’.  You have to think of what you’re going to make and then go about checking that you have the ingredients and THEN make it.  The same is true of us.  We can’t just be skinny or be stylish or be a better person.  We have to think of it first and be in that frame of mind before the rest follows.

Our life depends on the kind of thoughts we nurture. If our thoughts are peaceful, calm, meek, and kind, then that is what our life is like. If our attention is turned to the circumstances in which we live, we are drawn into a whirlpool of thoughts and can have neither peace nor tranquility.’ –  Elder Thaddeus of Vitovnica


  1. Yes, I definitely have my "off" days too! When that happens I do as you do and try to be thankful for all that I have. Just this morning I set a date with a friend to see her new home for the first time. It happens to be a beautiful multi-million dollar home. Then I began to think about our "not even close to million dollar" small home that needs work. I dragged my thoughts back up to the fact that our mortgage will be paid off within 3 yrs. and it made me realize how fortunate we actually are.

  2. I am not sure if you may be experiencing more than just an "off day"...I had this experience.

    I spent a year in the "doldrums" when I was in peri -menopause...
    I bought Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach and wrote in a gratitude journal every night ...it turned my life around.

    Hope that you feel more optimistic soon.

  3. Hi Fiona,
    I recently finished reading The Miracle of Mindfullness by Thich Nhat Hanh and one thing that I really like is to have at least one day of mindfulness a week. It should finally result in being mindfull on other days as well. I really like this concept of mindfulness, it helps to bring peace to my life. Sounds like your day off is very close to that concept.

  4. Oh! I do not like "off days"...I call them the uglies. Thankfully they are few and far between. And I do try really hard to always see the positive in my life because there really is more of that than anything else. It doesn't take much meditation to help me readjust my thinking...unless PMS is involved. ;)

  5. I have been feeling sad for a bit lately and I try to talk to a friend ,read a blog with lovely pictures or tackle a small project like cleaning 1 drawer. Joie de vivre does come back!

  6. Fiona,

    So glad you began blogging again! I enjoy your posts very much and when I see that you have a new one, it is one of the "little joys" of my day to take a moment and read it. You always seem to have something to say that ends up calming me or giving me a different perspective.

    Thank you!!!

  7. Like the Hostess of the Humble Bungalow I adore Simple Abundance, I read each day's entry every morning. I believe it would resonate with you Fiona.


    So glad you are blogging again! Have a lovely weekend.

  8. The small pleasures make me happy, too, Fiona. You are so right about our thoughts.

    It is nice to have you blogging again. I look forward to your next blog.

    My bag is small and sometimes I leave it at home if I am not driving.


Merci for your comment. Wishing you a chic day!

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