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The NovelFriends are four writers who met through Wisconsin Romance Writers and initially became bonded by our love of books. That connection has expanded, grown, and deepened into true friendship over the years. We look forward to sharing our experiences with you, so follow the blog and join in the fun - we're always happy to have more NovelFriends!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Choose Joy (Jamie)

"Today I Choose Joy" - This is the motto I try to live by each and every day.

This is much easier to do than many people think. There are so many little things that bring joy into my life every day. I hope each of you has the same opportunities. It's easy to recognize the annoyances and troubles - not so easy to see the simple, good things that make us smile.

Here are some of mine:

The weather - I love the crisp fall days, the colorful leaves especially when the sun is shining on them. I love quiet winter days when the snow is falling. I love beautiful spring days when everything turns green again and the rain washes away the end of winter. I love beautiful summer nights looking at the stars, or listening to the rain or a distant thunderstorm.

I'm from Wisconsin so I love the Packers. It's great to hear about their accomplishments on the field, but I'm most proud of them when I hear about the contributions they make to communities off the field. A truly fantastic group of guys.

I love baseball - an all American sport.

I love movies - not only old favorites like The Breakfast Club and Pretty Woman that I can watch over and over and never get tired of, but finding some new favorites like Gravity with its beautiful cinematography and Silver Linings Playbook with its outstanding acting.

I love books - don't know that I need to add much here, or that I can express how much I love reading. Finding a book I connect with just simply makes my day. I've currently started reading two books at a time - a romance and at the moment, the Harry Potter series. It's very true that there are too many books and not enough time.

I love writing - I am finally writing for real and regularly and it is a book I really like. It's a great feeling - I'm starting to feel like a real writer. I'm doing author-type things and making writing connections and it feels great.

I love connecting - I am making connections not just with writers but with my family that are on a whole new level. Now that my kids are growing up, we are having some really wonderful conversations together. My husband and I actually get a breather once in a while to have some conversations that revolve around topics other than the house or the kids these days, too. It's so nice to reconnect with him again.

I love music - I'm finding time to listen to music I enjoy again, after not really having done that for a long time. It's great to have our kids tell us they think we are such cool parents because we've raised them on awesome music. It's nice to listen to what we like and have them enjoy it, too, instead of rolling their eyes.

I love creating - writing, crafting, even Legos, household projects - some of my very favorite moments are when my imagination is working overtime. Almost the best feeling ever.

With all these amazing things around us every day, how can we NOT choose to have joy in our lives?

What makes you choose joy in your day?


  1. Great post, Jamie! I choose Joy because for one, my middle name is Joy, so how could I not? LOL But seriously, I learned a long time ago how useless it is to dwell on the things I cannot change, so it starts every day with choosing to be happy and enjoy what I can out of the day, not let the negative things get me down. That's just too darn depressing.

    Back when I worked as a travel agent, I'd be in a bad mood and after a couple phone calls I'd stop and have a little talk (silently) with myself. I'd make the decision that no matter how crappy things got, I was going to have a good day and it was amazing what that would do for my attitude. Now I work my dream job, so how can I not enjoy each day? (unless I'm painting my house. )

    Have a wonderful day! I'll be working hard, but I'm proof reading my own book and the good thing is I actually like my own stuff. LOL

    1. How wonderful to be blessed with Joy as part of your name. You have expressed my philosophy perfectly. I felt the exact same way when I worked outside of the house. Once I decided that was a horrible way to live and I had to start appreciating the good things my life has been so much better.

      I know you say you complain about painting, but even that is bringing you joy because you know how wonderful it will be when it's finished. You have a wonderful day, too, a day full of Joy!

  2. I love looking on the bright side of things. Sometimes I tend to dwell on the negative,but quickly try to shake myself out of it. Negativity is too unproductive to allow into my life long-term.

    I find joy in working in my garden, pulling weeds and seeing a row of healthy, weed-free plants behind me. For the same reason, I enjoy shoveling snow, how wonderful to look behind you and really see the progress you've made. I love the tangible accomplishments.

    I also get great joy from my children and their accomplishments. I've got two out of the house and on their own, it's such a satisfying feeling to know that we've raised happy, well adjusted adults. I also take great pride and joy in the accomplishments of our two still-at-home kids. What we did to get such great kids is beyond me.

    Oh yeah, I also love cleaning my house, then looking around and seeing the fruits of my labor, even if it only lasts until the dog comes running through the kitchen with muddy feet.

    1. Delia, I love your examples of finding joy in the everyday things in your life. It is very satisfying to find joy and pride in the accomplishments of our children, not only when they are at home, but especially when they are on their own and you can really see that they have learned what we have tried to teach them. Thanks for giving me more things to smile about. :-)

  3. I love crisp fall days like today and find joy in such days.

    Like Stacey, I've made a conscious decision to face life with a smile and joy. Why? It's so much easier that way. Many things bring me joy, many are similar to your categories. But mostly I'm joyful for each day I have among those I love.

    1. I agree, Casey. Life is so much easier to face every day when you purposely look for the good things. Being with those we love each day is certainly the source of much joy and blessing for many of us, thankfully.