Eyre Affairs

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Location: New York, United States

Sunday, October 15, 2006

"Such a wealth of the power of communicating happiness..." ~ Jane Eyre

As a child, I remember my mother coming home from a tag sale with my father and giving my sisters and I a book each. They were all different variations of the Happiness books that Charles Schultz wrote featuring his Peanuts characters. She inscribed each one to us.

Yesterday I rather enjoyed myself as I helped my sister Missy and our cousin Allie hold a garage sale. We had some items we didn't need anymore. Though we didn't sell a great deal, we had a great time being outdoors together, drinking coffee, eating oatmeal raisin coconut cookies, and enjoying each others' company. Jack visited for a little while (my mother sat him yesterday) and refused to let go of a big red leaf my mother had showed him early on in their walk. The beauty of a close family is that you never need an excuse to celebrate or to be together. So last night we had a big family dinner at Missy's with Allie's family and my parents.

I had volunteered early on that day to cook for everyone. It is rare I get to prepare a meal for a large group; happiness is cooking for more than one person! I had fun at the Italian market with my brother-in-law; food shopping with him is always fun. Last night I made tri colore baked ziti and sausage and peppers for everyone. Allie made dessert - a gingerbread cake. It was so delicious topped with coffee ice cream. I could not get over how well the coffee flavor complimented the gingerbread.

I started thinking about my own variation of the Happiness lists. So here it is. I hope that those who leave comments for this post will do so in the form of their own "Happiness is..." I would really enjoy reading them!

Happiness is...

~ A warm rottweiler puppy

~ Wearing a new hoodie sweatshirt on an Autumn day

~ When school closes for a snow day

~ One's 16 month old nephew insisting that he feed his aunt a Cheerio after his aunt feeds him a Cheerio

~ Opening up a new book and cracking its spine

~ Finishing a New York Times crossword puzzle on a Wednesday

~ Drinking kona coffee

~ Hearing the clink of wine glasses being set on a dinner table

~ Eating Dee's matzoh ball soup

~ The sound of New York City on any given night as you walk down one of her streets

~ Looking at old photographs of one's grandparents

~ Spending hours procrastinating as one peruses possible dresses to wear as a maid of honor

~ Taking a chocolate scented bath

~ Sitting in the upper deck at Yankee Stadium

~ Sitting by a fireplace on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day

~ Lying on the beach all day with a good book

~ Finishing a stack of papers that needed to be graded

~ The smell of the lotion after one's hands were placed in a hot towel when one goes to get a manicure

~ Sleeping past 6 0'clock in the morning

~ Loving one's car so much that one wishes one could sleep in it sometimes

~ Purchasing new makeup at a counter

~ Having naturally curly hair

~ Taking warm clothes out of the dryer

~ Picking out a Christmas tree

~ Viewing any episode of Sex and the City

~ Knowing velvet blazers never go out of style

~ Lighting tealights all over one's home

~ Re-reading Jane Eyre for the ninth time


Blogger work in progress said...

...Cuddling up on the couch under a cozy blanket while the snow falls (with a good book).

Toasting oneself in front of a roaring fireplace on a cold winter's day.

Hiking through the woods on an autumn day, and taking the time to look around at all the beauty mother nature has created.

Freshly baked apple pie a la mode.

Toddlers in adorable matching outfits (especially those with knitted hats!).

Hot Chocolate with Bailey's and Frangelico (or peppermint shcnaupps)

The quiet that lays over the land at dawn while most of the world is still asleep.

Comfortable shoes that are equally stylish.

This was FUN, great post AMY!

9:02 AM  
Blogger ThursdayNext said...

WIP ~ Ooooo those are all delicious! I love the one about toddlers in matching outfits! Sadly, Jack hates wearing hats. That hot chocolate mixture sounds perfect; it is freezing here this morning, so I may need to make a go of that! I am glad you enjoyed the post, m'dear. xoxo

9:50 AM  
Blogger John said...

Happiness is...

...the sound of a baby sleeping.

...a smiley face text message from my daughter.

...waking from a from a stress-filled dream about work, only to find, it's SUNDAY!

...music that chills you to your soul.

...a big, thick down comforter buried under a mountain of pillows.

...the silence of new-fallen snow.

11:13 AM  
Blogger Shannon said...

Hi- I just wanted to say that I love your blog. As a fellow English major and teacher.. I relate. Thanks.

11:29 AM  
Blogger superstar said...

life just a good

11:32 AM  
Blogger Marty said...

See my blog....


ps I cannot calm myself down! I truly cannot. It's like life just completely changed overnight. I can't comprehend how I'd feel if I myself had a child. Probably would not stop crying tears of joy.


11:40 AM  
Blogger K9 said...

/bark bark bark

yes yes yes! hot towels out of the dryer and a rottie pup! warmth to the Nth degree. i envy your nights in the big cit-tay...so much energy! clinking of wine glasses=the slamming down of tequila shots. mmmmm gingerbread and coffee..........i can live with that!

falcon -vs- giants today.

/(soft) grrrrrr

12:51 PM  
Blogger ThursdayNext said...

John ~ Your happinesses are lovely. Indeed, I love listening to my nephew's little breaths as he sleeps. I like taking peeks at him when he naps, too, but please don't tell my sister or she will tell me I am going to wake him up!

Shannon ~ Thank you for visiting here. I so love that your blog is Chicago-centered. You live in a fantastic city, and I enjoyed reading your last post on the World's Fair!

Superstar ~ Bonjour! Indeed, life is bonne!

Marty ~ Happiness IS having a nephew! ;) Thank you for sending the photos! He is too cute for words!

12:56 PM  
Blogger ThursdayNext said...

Rottiepoochie ~ I loved cuddling Cleo after she slept a whole night because she was always warm and soft! Of course her breath stank, too, but oh the things we let slide for a Rottie! GO GIANTS today! :) Have fun watching football! What are you cooking this week? Oh, you must do the coffee ice cream over gingerbread cake. Best new food concoction ever...

1:02 PM  
Blogger shpprgrl said...

I remember all those books. I ran across a stack of mine recently and I can not get rid of them! :) Peanuts still rock after all these years! Your list is great....and also the additions in the comments. SATC, papers graded, fall, hoodies.. definitely!

(That cookie sounds yummy...adding coconut makes it even more heavenly I'm sure!)

1:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I adored this...and congrats to Marty~

A warm puppy is lovely :)

At 6:30 am- hearing little voices in the living room, and finding the 5 yr old brother reading to his 3 yr old sister :) (it WILL make you cry- I DID!)

Warm Chocolate chip cookies- at any time, day or night.

My home on Christmas Eve- with 24 to 26 sisters, brothers, spouses and children all in attendance- all having fun- and eating everything I cooked for them.

Sitting on my deck- in the sun, in the shade, in all seasons, at all hours- looking at the 26 acres behind our house. (wish they were mine! :)

A kiss every night before I go to sleep-

My daughter brushing my hair and telling me how much she loves me :)

8:02 PM  
Blogger Bird said...

FINISHING the reading, responding, grading, and recording of 30 essays and 20 folders of miscellaneous student work and completing the planning of the next four weeks of lessons.

my daughter, dropping by out of the blue with a salad for me

knowing that someone refers to NYC as "she"

dogs running on the beach

birds singing

puppy love

clean sheets and towels on sunday night

reading this wonderful post!

12:49 AM  
Blogger PeeJ said...

Happy things...

Playing "Dead lions" in the long grass and thinking of my muse.

Twisted erotic trees at the same location.

Hearing an unexpected tune on the radio (see blog today)

Finishing a piece of art (yeah, like they're ever finished!)

Making the perfect thai green curry

Being told that someone is jealous about you (that's a weird one I know but makes me feel kinda ooky)

Getting warm on a cold day, snuggling into my scarf, my ruski bear hat and big clompy boots in preparation for an icy walk down by the towpath

Reading a good book that makes you want to turn straight back to page one and start all over again (cheers Audrey Niffenegger)


4:35 AM  
Blogger David said...

Reading a passage from "The Dead" that makes your soul ache.

Fish tacos from Rubios.

Dry leaves scattering with purpose.

Money in an old coat pocket.

Falling asleep to the sound of the rain on the roof, accompanied by Bebel Gilberto on the stereo.

The sound of frogs in the garden.

Being cold & drinking hot coffee.

That immediate jolt of pleasure when you kiss somebody for the first time.

That secondary jolt of pleasure you feel when you remember that kiss.


Admitting you're wrong and having it be okay.

Having God teach you the meaning of sublime. (It's an ongoing lesson.)

Saying something weird or obscure and having the person you're talking with know EXACTLY what you're talking about.

Using all seven letters on the Scrabble board.

Diet Snapple Iced Tea (peach)

Having somebody wish you a happy 30th birthday when you just turned 36.

Not only coloring outside the lines, but coloring Batman in all sorts of inappropriate colors not conducive to fighting the war on crime.

6:58 AM  
Blogger Clearlykels said...

warm fuzzy boots

the sounds of my heat clicking on during the crisp days as I watch the leaves gently fall

watching both of my animals come running to the door when I call

Opening a good bottle of wine with amazing people

the warmth of an arm around me

dark red nails in the fall

new red shoes:-)

waking up at 4 feeling refreshed only to realize that you get two more delicious hours in bed

borrowing fabulous jewelry and wearing it with all of its ridiculousness

going through cookbooks only to remember the foods that you had forgotten you love. pecan pie anyone?

obviously, i could go on and on-- fabulous post Amy!!!

12:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

/bark bark bark

lady jane what the hail is goin on! if yesterdays game is a portent of how the falcons are going to play the season my tail will stay down all fall. WHO squanders a ninety yard touchdown? for rotties sake. i thought about you all thru the game. wondered if you were cookin and watchin.

we made wings in the big green egg. and we did a smoked salmon too. we had a cold black bean salad and some garlicky pia chips.... and freezing cold Sol beers. we set up a TV outside so we could hang out on the deck and watch...while annoying our neighbors with hoots of delights and wails of dismay...

we had some youngsters there (rare!) so we carved some pumpkins and attemped to roast the seeds but they were not crisp but soggy and terrible. guess we didnt know what we were doing.


12:56 PM  
Blogger Marty said...

Jamocha shakes from Arby's!!

I just tried one, and it's basically soft-serve coffee mocha ice cream.

Dear Lord! It was the best shake I have had in my life.


ps Hope u have power up there. I saw about the massive snow. If I were there, I'd get my little snowtroopers out and pose them in the snow. hahaha :)

2:28 PM  
Blogger schaumi said...

happiness is for once sleeping through the night..

happiness is a foot rub given by somebody who does not expect to receive one back (immediately afterwards that is)

happiness is still being able to lift my nine year old and giving him a big old hug.

happiness is realizing my 15 year old still enjoys time with me

6:53 PM  
Blogger Lady Lux said...

ah'...so heartwarming...so many things to be thankful for...just what I needed to read..thank you...I so enjoye being hee..

4:38 AM  
Blogger ThursdayNext said...

ShpprGirl ~ I am glad you enjoyed the post. :) Indeed, the coconut was a last minute addition that really gave a great texture to the cookies!

Cora ~ I am not liking that you are doing this Beta Blogger - it is very hard to leave a comment! I love the description of your Christmas Eve; it sounds like a Norman Rockwell painting. I love the image of your daughter brushing your hair...

Birdie ~ Mmmm. I love the weekly changing of the guard when it comes to sheets and towels. There is nothing greater than getting into a bed with crispy clean sheets.

Peej ~ Ah, happiness is anything British! Tea, Elizabeth, The Beatles, Wodehouse, Bronte, and Peej. :) Send that thai green curry recipe over, please! Ruski bear hat? How bloody awesome!

David ~ What a lovely list. Just reading it made me happy! So is this all cheese in general or some particular kinds? I love swiss, brie, chedder, and feta. ;)

Kels ~ I love the dark red nails in the fall; a dark brown is nice, too. I love going through old recipes in a very disorganized binder and remembering I need to utilize it more!

DoggiePooch ~ It seems to me that Michael V is the culprit for the Falcon loss! Seven sacks? Eeep! I can't be of much consolation; I am glad my boys won! Hmmm. I think the seeds need to dry for a few days before roasting? xoxoxo

Marty ~ Damn, I need to find an Arby's in my area like TODAY.

Schaumi ~ Aren't foot massages the best? Its why I live for pedicures.

Lady L ~ Thank you for stopping by; I am glad you enjoyed the list. Cheers!

6:24 AM  
Blogger Connie said...

. . .Homemade soup.

Hugging your mom.

Reading your friends' blogs.

Sleeping in a tent.

The first snow of the year.

9:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

/bark bark bark

you got that right lady jane! michael vick had mucho promise but since he went all "gansta" on us he's sucking wind. i mean you should see him do an interview. he says after every sentance "you know what im sayin'?" yeah mike, we know what youre saying!
but what about how you are PLAYING! makes me wanna howwwwwwwwwwl


11:10 AM  
Blogger Ryane said...

Amy, what a wonderful list...here are a few other additions (;-):

--The smell of basil and lavender in the hot summer sun

--Blooming moonflowers

--Coffee..any variation

--The smell of new pointe shoes

--Listening to "Everlong" by the Foo Fighters

--The sound of my 2 year-old nephew calling my name...

--A perfect Apple Martini at Tryst

--The sound of a Scottish Highlander rolling his rrrr's




--Finishing a workout

--New York City, London, Scotland and Seattle

--Pride & Prejudice, Walt Whitman, ee cummings...oh--let's just say all of literature, shall we??

--New friends...=-)

9:29 PM  
Blogger Sid the Dog said...

... a slow squirrel.
... full trash can, sans lid.
...my favorite pillow on the best couch in the world.
... a six-week intensive Milton and Blake course in college. Not that I would know personally, but Great Oppressor J enjoyed it immensely so I have listed it here.
... gazing upon my spotted glory.

11:39 PM  
Blogger ThursdayNext said...

Connie ~ Oh how I love the first snow of the year, especially because it is also "Christmas Snow."

PuppyPie ~ I hear ya. I think too many players think they aren't expendable when, of course, they ARE! Seven sacks? That is just ruff.

Ryane ~ Oh my lord. That list takes the cake! Scottish Highlanders? Sigh. I would still make out with Sean Connery - and he is like fucking eighty! I do remember the smell of new pointe shoes. What company did you used to get? Mine were Freed of Londons. :)

SidPup ~ I love your list, pooch. It does not surprise me that you liked to listen about Blake. He really loved animals. ;) As for Milton...gah! I took a course on Milty and as much as I enjoyed it, I can say that he is not one I would consider a favorite in the Thursday Canon!

6:20 AM  
Blogger ThursdayNext said...

Oh, happiness is sweet fellow bloggers like Ryane and Peej who are darlings when I ask them to send yummy sounding recipes over my way. ;) Thank you, thank you, thank you! xoxoxo

6:22 AM  
Blogger Ryane said...

Amy: Freed's (crown maker) are my favorite...although now I have the Bloch Signatures's and I am very happy w/them. They are nice and boxy--I detest a tapered shoe.

I have tried Grishko (ugh--Iron Maidens!, Gaynor Minden's (umm--no, they Don't stretch w/a hair dryer!!) and Capezios...but Freed's are my fav. And the smell is soo...wonderful. It's like a clean sheet of paper: Potential personified...

10:00 AM  
Blogger PeeJ said...

'Tis a pleasure M'lady.


11:34 AM  
Blogger bob said...

- a new Vivaldi Edition CD arriving from Amazon

5:21 PM  
Blogger Seskel said...

Having naturally curly hair is definitely sweeeeet. I hated it as a child, but I've been warming up to it quite a lot in recent years.

3:43 AM  
Blogger Lady Lux said...

Happiness is having somebody whose lived with you since you were 19 say...

" you should be a daisy..."


7:27 AM  

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