One time I read an article in a magazine, where someone talked about the joy of finding money left in her jeans. It was an actual magazine too. The tactile pleasure of holding and leafing through I’ve been missing these days. I thought about making a list of old pleasures and simple joys, and asked a few of my friends to add to it.


Forehead kisses. – Sari, Dancer

Reading that one sentence in a new book that takes your breath away. – Megan, English Teacher

Tears from laughing so hard. – Me

Hearing your child say,“I’m not scared anymore.” Kate, Entrepreneur

Popping the life out of the bubble wrap that came with that thing you ordered online. – Michal, Interior Designer

Total silence. – Zarah, Marketing Executive

Seeds sprouting in my garden. – Doogie, Entrepreneur

Perfect scrambled eggs. – Pietra, Chef

Bonfires. – Nicole, Travel Agent

Good skin days. – Laarni, Banker

Jumping out of bed in horror thinking you’re so late then realizing it’s a weekend. – Anna, Magazine Editor

Delicious, sleepy stretches in bed. – Tina, Photographer

Making eye contact with a cute guy then catching him turn his head around to take a second look. – Katherine, TV executive

When you’ve cooked something and your kids go for seconds and thirds! – Janice, Stock Broker

Long talks over coffee with my 90-year old mom. – Johanna, Voice Artist

Looking up just in time to see a shooting star. – Dianne, Musician

Long, patient hugs. – Bella, Dentist

A dense but milky flat white with a hint of coffee. – Alan, Newsroom Consultant

Street musicians. – Jessie, Graphic Designer

Receiving postcards from friends after the unbearable waiting. – Beverly, Writer

Running to the sea. – Jasmine, Dive Instructor

Spontaneous conversations with people you don’t know, like standing in line or in the elevator. – Karen, Content Marketing

Finding old letters. – Annabelle, my Mom

And finally, here’s a favorite quote:

“To live content with small means. To seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion. To be worthy not respectable, and wealthy not rich. To listen to stars and birds and babes and sages with an open heart. To study hard, think quietly, act frankly, talk gently, await occasions. Never hurry. In a word, to let the spiritual, the unbidden and the unconscious rise up through the common. This is my symphony.” William Henry Channing

*Photo by Ina Amor Mejia for the April 2016 issue of Southern Living Magazine