My Memorial Day weekend was especially amazing, there were so many wonderful things to do and a very special person to do them with.  I think the highlight for me was going to the river on Sunday with the perfect group, most of which I didn’t know until that very day.  We went swimming in a little watering hole about a quarter-mile down from the house, which was clean and still.  Our friend Rob grilled out while we swung in hammocks and talked.  I don’t know if I’ve nominated a perfect day yet for 2012, but that one ranks pretty high on the list.

Are you ever of the mindset that things can never be perfect, that while some parts of life go better than you could have ever hoped, other parts always seem to suffer to balance it out?  I think this is a flawed way of viewing things and the process of living that I am guilty of from time to time.  I think the purpose of our lives is to find happiness, and keep it.  It lies in our choices, our attitude and our spirit.  I read a quote the other day that said we deserve to be happy 100% of the time – fully and proudly.  Speaking of quotes, here are a few of my favorite regarding happiness:

“The purpose of our lives is to be happy.” – Dalai Lama

“When what we are is what we want to be, that’s happiness.” – Malcolm S. Forbes

“Now and then it’s good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy.” – Guillaume Apollinaire

“Happiness is a how, not a what; a talent, not an object.” – Hermann Hesse

“The pursuit of happiness is a most ridiculous phrase; if you pursue happiness you’ll never find it.” – Charles Percy Snow

“Enjoy everything. Need nothing.” – Neale Donald Walsch

Something I have been trying to put into practice lately is letting myself accept the concept that I can be as happy as I want to be, this very second.  Or, that I should enjoy wonderful things that happen to me as if I am 100% deserving of them.  That those things are supposed to happen, not the other way around.  When I think those thoughts, I can literally feel a little child inside me screaming with happiness.  A hidden spirit is set free when it knows that it’s safe and allowed to express itself.   Most of us are taught that if things aren’t perfect, then we should be striving to make them so…that the celebration of life can only come once everything in all areas is lined up exactly the way we want them to be.  The truth is that’s never going to happen…yet we still have so many reasons to be appreciative of the here and now.  I can taste food, I can use my legs to go for a run, I can laugh and smile, I have a body that is healthy and plenty of loved ones around to spend time with.  I have a bed to sleep in, a kitty that purrs, and a job that is stable.  Right now I can hear birds chirping outside and people talking down the hall about their own weekends.  So many things to be happy about.

Whistle Stop Cafe

Salsa Showdown benefiting the Sidewalk Film Festival!

Park time with James (and photo by him…)

First visit at Steel City Pops

Four eyes

Charlie in full form. (photo by Micah)

River Music

Hammock time

My Bonnaroo bracelet came in the mail!!