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Friday, December 3, 2010

What Makes You Smile?

What makes you smile? I was thinking about this the other day after I saw a couple of burros in a corral along the main road through the village of Corrales, NM. I always smile when I see burros. They look so friendly and peaceful. So I started thinking about other things that make me smile:

  • Sunflowers
  • Black-eyed susans along the highway
  • Being outside on a beautiful, warm, sunny day 
  • Hiking
  • Puppies
  • My daughter coming home from school
  • Hot air balloons
  • Watching my dogs be silly while squirming on their backs, feet in the air
  • The beauty of nature
  • Red rocks
  • Certain pieces of music 
  • The sound of a whale exhaling as it breaks the ocean's surface
  • Pygmy goats
 Other things make me happy, other things bring me pleasure and fun, but these things actually bring a smile to my face. I love driving the roads in Utah lined with black-eyed susans. Sunflowers have the same effect, although I don't see them as often. We plan to grow some in our back yard next year.

Something about seeing, and hearing, a hot air balloon also results in a smile. I love the sound of the propane burner shooting flames into the 'envelope' of the balloon. I love the colors, the unusual designs of some of the balloons (did you ever see a large cow balloon flying overhead, or a kangaroo or a giant Pepsi can riding the winds?), and the sense of freedom these balloons represent.

And of course, seeing a beautiful mountain, a crisp blue sky, red rocks or any of nature's colorful canvas will invariably bring a smile to my face. I also love watching puppies fall all over themselves as they play, and seeing my dogs enjoy a roll in the grass, or even on their beds.

The things that make me smile aren't expensive or fancy. Most of them are things I see in the natural world. They aren't things I can buy at a store. There are no fancy cars or expensive personal items on the list. My smile comes from the enjoyment of simple things, of things that speak to my soul.

Smiles, I think, are very under-appreciated. A smile can have a dramatic impact on both the giver and on the recipient. A smile can change a sad, dreary day to a happy one. A smile costs nothing to give, yet its value and impact can be immense.

There are so many wonderful quotes about smiles; all of the quotes below are by 'author unknown':
  • Every day you spend without a smile is a lost day. 
  • A smile is the light in the window of your face that tells people you're at home. 
  •  The world always looks brighter from behind a smile. 
  •  Life is like a mirror, we get the best results when we smile at it. 
  •  If you don't have a smile, I'll give you one of mine. 
  • A smile costs nothing but gives much.  It enriches those who receive without making poorer those who give.  It takes but a moment, but the memory of it sometimes lasts forever.  None is so rich or mighty that he cannot get along without it and none is so poor that he cannot be made rich by it.  Yet a smile cannot be bought, begged, borrowed, or stolen, for it is something that is of no value to anyone until it is given away.  Some people are too tired to give you a smile.  Give them one of yours, as none needs a smile so much as he who has no more to give.  
Think about what makes you smile. It doesn't matter what it is: watching puppies at play, enjoying the outdoors, or spending time with a loved one. Just figure out what makes you smile, and make sure you make time for those things or people. Smiling is an easy, inexpensive way to enrich your life.