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The great harmonies

Reinhold Niebuhr, in his book The Irony of American History, talks about happiness as harmony. “Happiness is desired by all men and women; and moments of it are probably attained by most men and women,” Niebuhr writes. “Only moments of it can be attained because happiness is the inner concomitant of the neat harmonies of […]

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Laugh more!

Wit “is a necessary quality of mind for navigating our complicated world,” says James Geary, author of Wit’s End. In other words, laugh more. “To see clearly, look askance,” Geary advises.

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Hug more!

A 2018 study by Carnegie Mellon University found that people who receive hugs feel more positive. They’re happier! In its January 11, 2019, issue The Week magazine also reports that a Harvard study showed that living a healthy, happy life depends more on good friendships than on exercise or cholesterol levels.

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A splendid day

“Splendid” is one of my favorite words, and, for Christmas, I received a splendid mug decorated with a splendid quote. “What a splendid day!” wrote L.M Montgomery, author of Anne of Green Gables. “Isn’t it good just to be alive on a day like this?” –Joy

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Pretty amazing

My son Jay has a new job and a new apartment. My daughter Mary Elizabeth just got back from Frankfurt, where she gave a seminar for a group of German dog trainers. And, my husband Jerry and I are talking to BRIT, the Brittany rescue in Texas, about getting a new dog. Soon, we hope! […]

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Summer mornings and afternoons

“Summer afternoon,” Henry James once said. “Summer afternoon. To me, the two most beautiful words in the English language.” In Dallas, where it can be 80 degrees at 6 a.m. on an August morning, I like to take an early morning walk when it’s still almost dark. It’s cooler. And, during my walk, I can […]

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Flowers and blue skies

I found this bit of wisdom in an article about “mindfulness” in a Weight Watchers’ publication. “Above the clouds the sky is always blue.” My husband Jerry, my daughter Mary Elizabeth and I recently visited the Dallas Arboretum early one morning. And, the flowers and the blue sky did lift our spirits. Flowers and blue […]

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Fresh air and sunshine

When we went to the Dallas Arboretum last week with our friends Sally and Charlie, Sally said, “Let’s go again next week.” So, we’re going to the arboretum again today. “Some old-fashioned things like fresh air and sunshine are hard to beat,” Laura Ingalls Wilder once said. Fresh air and sunshine—and flowers, of course! –Joy

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Happy spring!

I spent the first day of spring at the Dallas Arboretum, where 500,000 spring flowers are blooming. That’s right. 500,000! The Dallas Arboretum is the Southwest’s “largest floral festival.” It was a happy day. As Emerson once wrote, “The earth laughs in flowers.” –Joy

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Carry your own weather

I’m ready for summer. It has been rainy, cloudy, cool for days. Sometimes I let the weather affect my mood. And, sometimes, I let stormy relationships with the people around me depress me. “Carry your own weather,” advises Todd Davis in his book Get Better—15 Proven Practices to Build Effective Relationships at Work. I have […]

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