I’ve been thinking a lot about happiness lately. Not just because it’s the subject of my book, either.  Since the arduous task of editing is done, I actually have a few minutes of the day to get lost in thoughts that aren’t related to plot structure or character development. Now that Athena’s story is complete, now that she has found her happiness, I’ve found myself focusing on my own happiness in a new way.  I’m in a much different place in my life than I was when I started writing Flawed Happiness five years ago, when I was working two jobs and childless and driving to another state on my days off to visit my husband. I feel like I can finally take a breath. In this place between the book release and baby {and book} #2, I’m able to take a few moments to think about everything that has happened in my life recently and make sense of it. Evaluate the positives and negatives, what’s helped me to grow and what I’ve had to let go of for my own good.

Specifically, I’ve been thinking about what brings me happiness in my everyday life. Not just the profound choices, but also the simple, seemingly superficial things that undoubtedly make the day a little better. Here are ten things that come to mind, in no particular order:

1. Snuggling in bed with my daughter first thing in the morning
2. A hot latte or cup of tea (edit to “iced” in the summertime and “wine” in the evenings, when I’m not pregnant)
3. Sunshine on my face
4. Receiving a text message or email from a good friend. I am living in a temporary situation right now where I don’t know many people. It’s nice to hear from someone familiar, even if it’s about something silly
5. Settling into the couch with my husband at night, watching one of our TV shows, and sharing a dessert
6. My toddler’s naptime (for those few minutes a day to myself that I spoke of earlier)
7. Eating a good dinner every night. Most of my other meals are relatively light, so I look forward to enjoying a satisfying meal at the end of each day
8. Taking a hot shower while listening to my favorite music
9. The way that my new essential oil diffuser makes a room smell. It’s so therapeutic.
10. Chocolate. More times a day than I’m willing to admit.

What kind of things bring you happiness in the everyday? Comment below for a chance to win an autographed copy of Flawed Happiness. Contest ends March 19, 2015 at 11:59 pm.

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