I’m in my Happy Place.

Great Read Award By the time you read this, I will be gone.

Oh yes, I’m writing this post in advance and by now I’m on hols. Maybe I’m on a beach somewhere making sandcastles. Or perhaps experiencing the special joy that is eating in a motorway service station. Who knows? I hope the weather's good, though.

Anyway, many thanks to Nurmisur over at To Much Information (do you see what she did there?) who has passed on this Great Read award to Who’s the Mummy? Thanks for that.

Now I'm supposed to tell you 10 things about me, but on the basis I’ve kind of done that already here, I’m implementing a slight tweak. I once read an article in Reader’s Digest (so you know it’s definitely true) that said people are genetically predisposed to be mostly happy or mostly unhappy. The test to see which you are is this: can you think of 10 happy memories? Now think of 10 unhappy memories. Which was faster?

The theory is that if you’re the sort of person who remembers happy things more vividly than unhappy things, then you’re likely to be happier overall.

The article really struck a chord with me, and every day I make a conscious effort to try and think of something that made me happy. When I tuck Flea up in bed at the end of the day we also have a routine of telling each other something we did that day that was really fun, or which made us happy.

So, here are the 10 happy memories I can think of this morning:

  1. Sitting on the beach in Brighton having a barbecue one evening last summer with my friends A and P, watching our little girls playing football together. The sun was sparkling on the sea, it was warm despite being 9pm, and it was just one of those perfect moments when everything is right.
  2. Taking a bus home from Camden to my new flat in Finsbury Park one April afternoon when I was 23, realising I’d just been offered my first ever journalism job. I felt like a proper grown-up for the first time.
  3. Having lunch with my friends L and R last week, and laughing at L’s description of London drivers so hard that I almost passed out. She’s dead right about Putney Bridge, though – it’s survival of the most psychotic.
  4. Having a scan three weeks after being told I’d had a miscarriage and hearing the operator say, “right, there’s the heartbeat.” I don’t think I’ve ever felt more grateful for anything in my life.
  5. Hearing that one of my very good friends has just got engaged this week. She’s 38 and lives in Manhattan, and I’ve seen over the years that a good man is not easy to find in that city. I’m just so pleased for her I smile every time I think about it. And her 1920s art deco ring is beyond gorgeous, which is I suppose what you get for marrying a French guy.
  6. Watching Take That in concert this summer. I wasn’t a fan as a teenager (I preferred a bit of the Jam and Prefab Sprout, really) but it was the most fun show I think I’ve ever been to. And it’s weird because even if you’re not a Take That fan you magically know all the words, don’t you?
  7. Watching the chap trying to clear a herd of ducks from the road last week when they were swarming on the bridge. Turns out that a grown man running around clapping and making bizarre honking noises isn’t at all intimidating to ducks. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so much in all my life.
  8. Reading My Family and Other Animals while eating a Greek salad and looking out over the ocean from the veranda of the White House that Durrell once lived in, in Corfu. Great book, great island, another perfect moment.
  9. Our last day this summer on the chap’s boat – we regularly get lost, get drenched, forget to do vital boating tasks and generally are completely irresponsible but I love the feeling of being on the water. It’s like being untouchable.
  10. Playing a new chord properly for the first time last week on my Baby Taylor. I’m not a musically talented person by nature, let it be said, so this is a big achievement for me. 

And I'm tagging the following people as being great reads – feel free to aswer my questions or random questions of your own, obviously: Hot Cross Mum, Sleep is for the Weak, Diary of a Surprised Mum, OMG I'm Pregnant, Sharon at Tish Tash Toys, and finally, Babyrambles

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