Monday, June 26, 2017

The Little Things

by Dotti

What makes you happy?  It’s the little things that make me happy, like Gerbera daisies and the color red.  

Recently I came across a “class” that resonated with me, made my heart sing, sounded like just what I needed to launch my photography into summer. I’d like to tell you about it.

Some, maybe all, of you may have heard of Karen Walrond. I’ve been following Karen’s blog and her work for several years. An original Shutter Sister, Karen soon went her own way with her own message. She’s a wonderful photographer, an excellent writer, a very insightful person and has an impressive professional resume.

A couple of weeks ago she launched her 21-day #shutterhappy project and I decided to jump in. It's something you can enroll in at any time so if you're interested, give it a try. The premise is that gratitude helps us attain and maintain happiness. The objective is to cultivate a habit (hence the 21 days) of looking every day for things that make us happy and taking a photo of at least one of those things. We’ve talked about this very thing here at FOL on more than one occasion and I believe it to be true so let’s chat about it today.

Here’s the cool thing: I’m barely half way through the project but all day long, I find myself looking at things and smiling because I realize how grateful I am for them. Most of them are simple things. For instance  -

A simple breakfast on the back porch -

The first swallowtail this season on one of our butterfly bushes -

The flowers on my back porch –

A coneflower ready to bloom into all its fullness and beauty –

The happy orange of a tiger lily - 

The blue of a hydrangea –

Some of these are my direct response to Karen’s prompts, some are just things that made me pause in my day and pick up my camera. Being more observant of things around me, particularly the little things that I’m grateful for has put a smile on my lips, my "center" seems calmer, I find that I’m happier.

Now I’m not naïve enough to think that it will always be easy. When  life gets tough, this practice will be harder but I believe even practicing a wee bit of gratitude at these times will help us weather these storms as they come.

Whatever it is that makes you happy, take the time to say thanks and smile at yourself and your gratitude. I think you’ll be glad you did.



Cathy H. said...

It's amazing how the smallest of things can make me happy and grateful. Your photos are all beautiful, but I'm blown away with the coneflowers. The background bokeh is gorgeous! Thank you for the link to the 21 day gratitude class, I just signed up!

AFishGirl said...

Goodness me, this could not have been more timely. And I think these are some of the most beautiful photos I've seen of you seeing the world, Dotti. They shine with gratitude. Truly exceptional work, my friend. It is not the right time for me to take the class but I am, because of this post, going to take some photographs in my own gratitude journey. Thank you for this post. From the bottom of my heart.

terriporter said...

Focusing on gratitude always lifts my mood and makes me happy. And it's at those times when things are hard that we need to dig down deep and focus on the good in our lives. I'm doing Karen's class too and really enjoying it. Nothing like a little daily dose of gratitude!

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