Five Things Making Me Happy Today 2/13

I so enjoy doing these, and you know what? In my experience there is never, ever a shortage of things in life to be happy about, regardless of what else might be going on, so welcome to the February version of My Five Happy Things!

1) I started on this needlepoint project for our soon-to-be-here granddaughter:

I've made two different versions of these birth records already, one for each of my granddaughters (In addition to my daughter's daughter, who we affectionately call 'our girl,' we have a spunky little step-granddaughter that lives with her Mama in Florida, but that we get to see and enjoy several times a year whenever her visits with her Papa in Metro DC coincide with ours, or when she comes out here to visit with us.) I much enjoy needlepoint, but it doesn't really have a place in my home at this point, so to once again have a fun project like this to work on makes me very happy!

2. I signed up for a series of intermediate tennis lessons at a nearby tennis center. And even better, we're in town for all eight of the lessons because we're traveling just a bit less these days.

3. Our backyard remodeling project was officially approved by our HOA. This was about two full months of effort, so it's a big relief to be done with the neighbor and HOA negotiating. Anticipated start date is mid-March, and once completed we'll have an expanded upstairs balcony complete with spiral stairs leading down to the backyard, and a totally re-done, newly low maintenance yard. Very excited for our landscaper to get going on this!

Our new landscape will include lots of gray paver stones like in this photo,
plus artificial turf and slow growing native California grasses. Excited!

4. I started sleeping through the night without needing to run a fan. The master bedroom in our new home is downstairs, so it's much, much cooler at night than our prior home's upstairs master bedroom was. However, after 25 years of running a fan at night in our prior home, I was rather addicted to the white noise. Since the weather began cooling here come winter, I've worked to wean myself off of it, and I finally managed to do so starting two nights ago. I'm looking forward to the welcome decrease, even if small, in our monthly electric bill.

5. And finally, we're entertaining this weekend and I'm making the most amazing risotto, and the most luscious chocolate cake! I'm thankful and happy that I enjoy preparing home cooked meals for our friends and family. Not only is it more economically than dining out, it makes our guests feel special, it creates a lovely sense of coziness, and possibly best of all, we get to keep and enjoy all the leftovers.

Here are the recipes for both items I'm making, so you can generate a little at-home happiness also!

That's it for me, so now it's your turn - What's making you happy today? Please share below!


  1. At times I wish we had an HOA, when the weeds in the neighboring houses are out of control. But to have to get every little project approved would make me crazy, too. What a lovely space you are creating in your backyard!

    And chocolate cake is a language of love in itself. Mmmm.

    1. Yep, it's definitely a ying and yang thing with HOA's, Leslie. But, now that the big OK has been achieved, we can relax and not worry if we don't go precise by the letter of our plans. As long as we're close, we're fine.

      I would send you a slice of this divine chocolate cake if I could Leslie!

  2. What makes a person happy is so subjective and it isn't always the "big" stuff as evidenced in your anticipation of a home project & a company menu. Here are 5 things making me happy today:
    1. Road conditions prompted me to cancel appointments today so I get to stay home!
    2. There's a fire in the wood stove & soon there will be a pot of turkey/rice soup on the stove.
    3. Cut & color at the stylist's yesterday.
    4. Anticipating house guests this w/e to celebrate my mother's 85th birthday.
    5. The luxury of choice & time.

    1. I love those '365 Days of Happy Things' desk calendars. They are full of simple things to take notice of and enjoy, like spring flowers starting to bloom, a sunny day, or a kitten purring. A reminder to enjoy the small things.

      Enjoy your upcoming celebration of your mother's 85th!

  3. Since the arrival of my first grandchild a week ago, I have never said that these five things make me extremely happy!
    1. Laundry
    2. Taking out the garbage
    3. Walking the dog
    4. Housework
    5. Dishes
    My assistance lets me spend more time hanging with my daughter and granddaughter.
    What a joy!! Truly!!!

    1. As grandparents that stayed with our daughter both before and after she gifted us with our granddaughter, I completely get your list Robin! It is a wonderful thing for us to be able to 'gift' our daughter and her family with our time, in order to make their lives a little easier. I'm sure your daughter completely appreciated the help. I know I would!

  4. Oh can I come over for dinner too? That looks so good! :) Yay for backyard renovations! You're never going to want to leave home!

    1. You may, Sarah! :-)

      Funny, I am just home from the market, and in line a gentleman saw my shopping list and exclaimed he hadn't seen such a long list in ages. My list wasn't that long (!) but it did reflect that I enjoy cooking from scratch, vs relying on convenience foods. Don't ask me where I got this hobby from, because it definitely wasn't my mom . . . I remember lots and lots of Hamburger Helper growing up!


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