How High Is Your Dung Hill? Or, Being Grateful for Being 10% Happier

The sun is softer in winter. It doesn’t have the heavy heat of mid-summer when the sun obliterates anything but the strongest green survivors. Or cacti. It’s all cool breezes and warm sun-kisses on the bare branches of my willow tree.
The leaves are really dropping around here right now – the wind will kick up and hundreds of them will leap up into the sky and whirl around playfully. It looks like it’s snowing leaves. Then the sun will break through and set them ablaze with golden light and I swear in those moments I believe in magic. I feel like God is right there, smiling at me through nature, like a God-Nature-Hug. A GNH moment.
Ever have those moments? When you connect to the beauty around you and the rest of your life fades away to gray and time slows and you know, you just know, this is what really matters. These small, beautiful moments like beads on the thread of my daily life.
Another one just today, I was jumping on the Trampoline (gently) with Ellie and Ben and Ellie was laughing the way kids do, with their whole being you know? 

Down her toes and to the tips of her ears and I see another GNH moment happening and I am overwhelmed with joy and gratitude and love for her, for Ben, for myself, for the whole world really. She jumps up and her hair flies up around her head and her laugh bubbles up from deep down and I can feel myself laughing too and the way her eyes sparkle in the sun and I’m all teary, jumping around on the trampoline, just being stupid-happy.
Anyway, I started a gratitude journal and those were some of my entries, yesterday and today. Wouldn’t it be nice to feel this way all the time?
Where you don’t get upset when you feed the dog in the morning and the top comes off the container and you spill the whole months worth of food on the floor (Wed AM).
Where your two year old doesn’t wake up crying because his molars are coming and they hurt. (Monday, Wednesday, Friday).
You know, a day where you’re making play-doh from scratch like a good stay-at-home-mom and your two year old dumps an entire bottle of Tumeric on the floor? And then jumps down into it and runs around the house tracking yellow powder everywhere? (Friday).
Or maybe when you’re trying that curbside grocery thing at HEB and you get there too early and you unbuckle your kids because they’re getting antsy and screaming ‘INSIDE! INSIDE!’ and then your two-year old bites you, hard, when you take off his sweater because he’s hot because…molars. Then he climbs onto the backseat of the van and jumps. And hits his head on the ceiling because you can’t jump off the backseat on the van and not hit your head, even if you’re two. (Friday)
Anyway. Where was I? Gratitude! I’m not overstating the amazingness being grateful has done for my soul. It just replenishes the mommy-tireds and reminds me how really, truly, awesome my life is and how many blessings I have just overflowing everywhere, all the time.
Seriously, try it. Try it and try NOT to become at least 10% happier, no matter what is going on in your life. Someone once said, ‘no matter how high is the dung hill you sleep on, the blue sky is endless, the yellow sun shines, and the leaf turns golden when it falls.’
To close, I am really very thankful I am not sleeping on a dung hill. A hill of dung is not for me. The end.

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