happy things from a chilly wednesday in london

when i was a teenager, i got really into making "happy things" lists. i'd jot down random little joys from everyday life and loved looking back on them, especially when i was feeling a bit less-than-glad. i've continued listing happy things throughout the years at random times, and it always helps me to remember how much beauty is around me and how much there is to be grateful for.

i was a tad grumpy this morning because i'm so ready to be done with cold weather (which seems to have returned with a vengeance this week in london!) and because i have had a series of third-trimester-induced terrible night's sleep. but i jotted down a few random, small tidbits of life that were making me happy and immediately found a bounce in my step. i remembered how outrageously privileged and blessed i am and had a productive day.

i have a pile of draft blog posts in the works (holy land travel tips, thoughts on pregnancy and my transition into motherhood, a giveaway for cute maternity clothes!...) but for today i just wanted to share a few little things that are making me happy! what's on your list?!


-one morning recently, when i came out of our front door onto the bustling street, i saw a tour guide on the corner with a few tourists. i overheard just one sentence that he said as i walked by: "...and this building is where charles dickens went to school..." tiny moments like that remind me how stinking cool of a place i live in.

-this weekend the boy and i excitedly opened up a big box that had arrived from amazon. inside was a little moses basket and stand - our baby boy's first bed. we were giddy about putting it together. we pulled the plush fabric  - which was advertised as being "cream/white" - out of the box and simultaneously asked each other ... "does that look a little pink...?" haha! we decided that our baby boy is going to rock his subtle pink bassinet! it's set up in a corner of our bedroom and pretty much every time either of us see it we freak out a little with excitement, considering there is going to be a little human - our little son! - to fill it up in just two and a half months!

-the project i've been managing at work has been evolving in really positive ways, and this week i've solidified with my colleagues how my work can best continue over the next few months and after baby boy comes. i'll be shifting my focus to an element of the project that is more schools-facing (rather than concerning the entirety of the large organization supporting the schools). this week i've presented at and participated in some really productive meetings and i'm excited for what's ahead and my opportunities to contribute.

-i have been able to stay super active during pregnancy. yesterday i relished a vigorous yoga class (which i've been doing about once a week) and held my five minute plank (which i've continued to do about three times a week). i'm really, really grateful for my health and that of baby boy, who is continuing to move around inside me so much! this week he has gotten the hiccups a few times, which is kind of a fun sensation but i hope he isn't too bothered! :)

-when we were in israel, my sister saydi sent me an email that revealed the best surprise - flight confirmation to london for both her and my sister saren! they are coming for a week and will be here for my baby shower! i am so so so so so delighted by their surprise and so so so so excited to see them and be in london with them.

-tomorrow night, we are flying to bratislava! we are going to spend a long weekend (hurray for bank holidays!) driving from slovakia and around slovenia, and exploring budapest.

-amidst our so abundant and advantaged life, i've been working on discovering different ways that we can serve more. i am so jazzed about gojanegive (in case you can't tell!) and am devising two different fundraisers using that platform (more information coming soon!). in the meantime, i'm inspired by my friend meg and my sister saydi's fundraisers. check them out, especially if you are interested in expert tips on homemade baby food or portrait photography. if you live near boston, london or salt lake city, donate to book a photo session with my brilliant sister and contribute to refugee relief at the same time. {here's her blog post about her fundraiser. she articulates so well there how i too feel about perspective and my cushy life and wanting/needing to give.}


  1. I see the pinkish color, but mostly cream. :) It is really beautiful! Loved having a bassinet by our bed for all the kiddos. Ours has storage under the bassinet part so you don't even have to get out of bed if you through some diapers and wipes and an extra sleeper in there, or maybe in a nightstand drawer.

  2. 1. My brother served in Bratislava! It was a real depressing place for a missionary :) 2. Did you buy that globe from Anthropologie? I can't remember if we've talked about it or not. It's adorable 3. I love the bassinet! Way to challenge gender stereotypes that are totally meaningless :) 4. I got up yesterday super grumpy as well, and I thought, "I should think of lots of positive things so that I'm super happy!" And then I thought, "You know what? I'm done feeling guilty about not being happy all the time. I don't WANT to be super happy all the time. I'm okay with having a bad day or two every once in a while. I think it's probably really good for me." What do you think? We should discuss this and enlighten one another. 5. Love you!

    1. the globe is from target, haha!! and on 4, yes. i think sometimes we can (and should) just be sad or blah or a little grumpy. but most times i prefer happy. and perspective. i wish you were here so we could talk rather than me comment on your blog comments. miss you.

    2. I hope it's okay for me to join the discussion since it's in the comments. I think all people prefer being happy and to have a perspective is a good thing. I do believe though that having other feelings and relishing them is important, too. You should definitely not feel guilty about not being happy all the time.
      Last year, my mother-in-law died unexpectedly and I had a minor surgery planned. I was very sad, bitter and angry. A friend said I should let these feelings go and see both as trials I could learn from. I disagreed, because I believe that I had to feel these feelings deeply, so I could work them out.
      As for being grumpy, I think all of us feel grumpy sometimes even if there is no real reason for it (maybe it's hormones?) and it's probably time for watching trash and stuff yourself with food (whatever your remedy is).
      I have two resources for these thoughts. First you can't appreciate the sun if you never have rain (and Charity, not only in London; we had snow this week! In April!) and "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens" (Ecclesiastes 3).

    3. And just to clarify, I think a happy list is a good thing!

  3. I'm so happy that you're happy! It's so great to feel "settled" before your life changes forever! Enjoy every day because it just gets more exciting!

  4. Gojanegive was founded by my good friend's sister and she is such a cool person! I can't wait to get involved! She lives in London, maybe you will run into her!:)

  5. Thanks for the shout out char! Can't wait to see you!