Equipped With Happiness


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Seven Special Things About Spring

Photo by Debbie Mann

Photo by Debbie Mann

The time for making snowmen is drawing to a close. But the end of winter means the start of spring, which is pretty great, too.  Here are seven reasons to smile this season:

Spring-themed candy: Everywhere you look there are Cadbury Crème Eggs, Peeps, jelly beans, and giant chocolate bunnies. It’s like the world suddenly got 10 times more delicious. Also, buying M&M’s or Reese’s peanut butter cups somehow feels more justifiable when they come in pastel colors and egg shapes.

Moderate temperatures: Spring is a nice middle ground between winter and summer; it’s sort of a weather compromise. It’s the easiest time of year to get dressed because the temperature outside is closer to the temperature inside. There isn’t the need to pile on five jackets just to take out the trash without getting frostbite, or the need to pour a bottle of water over your head in the hopes of surviving the sweltering journey between the car and the store.

Outdoor sports and activities: Some people know spring by a different name: “baseball season.” But this time of year is great for all kinds of sports, from tennis or golf to Frisbee. It’s also the perfect time for hikes, picnics in the park, playing fetch in the backyard, and any other kind of outdoor fun.

The end of flu season: Even though flu season can last until May, it typically peaks in January and February (according to the CDC). This means flu season should be winding down through the beginning of spring and be officially over before the season ends. Of course, there will still be plenty of allergies to keep us sniffling. But once again we will be able to go out in public without having to dodge the coughs of half a dozen sick strangers (or maybe that’s just germaphobic me).

The fruit: Strawberry season hits in spring, bringing strawberry shortcake, chocolate covered strawberries, smoothies, and a million other wonderful things along with it. And for anyone who isn’t a strawberry fan, spring is also the season for cherries, apricots, kiwis, pineapples, and avocados (if you don’t like any of these, fret not, you’ll just have to buy extra spring candy to compensate).

April showers: Spring skies are clear, for the most part. But every once in a while the clouds roll in and give the gift of precipitation to people who aren’t ready to let go of winter just yet. These rainy days are a chance to savor a few final cups of hot chocolate and sneak in some last cozy movie-watching moments. Not only that, spring rain helps bring life back to all the lovely plants that withered away during the colder months.

Pretty flowers and adorable animals: Everything gets more colorful and lively in spring. All kinds of flowers are in bloom, and the grass looks healthy and green. The animals seem to come out of hiding, and everywhere you look there are hummingbirds, squirrels, ducks, and little baby rabbits. Awwwww, cute!!!

So go forth, with a little “spring” in your step, and enjoy this wonderful season. But maybe try not to eat that entire chocolate bunny in one sitting.


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Natural Reminders the World is an Incredible Place

It is easy to become so focused on pursuing happiness in the manmade world that we forget all about the reasons Mother Nature gives us to smile. Sometimes stopping to enjoy the beauty of the natural world can be a chance to get away from the stresses of everyday life and remind ourselves of all the good in the world. While physically spending time in nature offers many rewards that no photo can capture, this slideshow is a reasonable substitute for those who don’t have the time, the means, or the tolerance of dirt and bugs to visit the outside world in person.

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