a happy list.

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this time of year always seems the trickiest for me to get through, and with the unbearable cold temperatures right now in the city that force us to stay inside most days, i feel it extra. by 3 or 4 in the afternoon each day, i feel like all three of my little ones can feel it, too.

i tried to compile a short list of things that are making me happy as i fell asleep last night (like in years past), and decided to keep adding to it today.  there’s a lot of good around here. even in brutal february.

10 things that make me terribly happy:

  1.  conrad’s coos and yawns and squinty eyed smiles
  2. the unexpected compliment
  3. looking at hair photos on pinterest (why are they so good!)
  4. feeling the sun on my face or back or body after walking several city blocks shaded by buildings in the cold wind
  5. when my little ones get along
  6. scrubbing my bathroom clean until it sparkles (weird, i know. but i love a good cleaning session)
  7. planning beach days and summer outings
  8. riding the subway alone and getting the chance to put my headphones on and listen to all my favorite old music, as loud as i want
  9. kind emails
  10. when my man wears that one cologne


more happy lists HERE from way back in the day….

what makes you terribly happy?

  1. Kelly

    When I hear laughter. Anyone’s really, it’s so infectious, but my parents especially. My dad has this belly laugh that has always reminded my siblings and I of Santa. And he smiles with his eyes. It makes me so happy I could burst at the seams.

  2. mara


  3. Saturday afternoon after the snow had fallen a few inches I walked past a mother, father, their daughter and the grandparents. the grandparents were half a block a head of the rest and EVERYONE was making snowballs and was about to go into a playful snowball fight right on the sidewalk in downtown jersey city. it was the most adorable thing ever (well that, and their awesome british accents!!)

  4. Laula

    Great list. I think you wanted to say “eau de cologne” like the french one, did you ?

  5. vicky

    i loved all of your friends’ lists! i remember reading them year before last. so much fun. this is a great way to get through the cold – or anytime.

    i have to say, something that makes me terribly happy is the day after i’ve scrubbed my house and i can come home from work (or wherever i am) and just sit with some coffee/tea/hot cocoa and relax in my clean, little home. makes me so so happy!

    you always make me stop to think of how grateful i am for the little things in my life that keep it pure and wonderful. thanks, Naomi!

  6. Eden

    Love this post. However I have to disagree with looking at photos of hairstyles on Pinterest. That gets me down since I have fine curly hair and it’s so hard to get all those nice styles LOL!


  7. Rhianne

    I remember these lists, I can’t believe its been 4 years. I still make them when I’m having a tough time to cheer me up! I might have to write another on my blog too :)

  8. Ale Mazzonetto

    They’re back! They’re back!! Gosh I always loved reading your happy lists as well as the feature you did on your friends! Stay happy and happy almost March! (Thank goodness!)

  9. Samantha

    Great idea to stay positive even in this cold, dreary weather! I’m definitely going to start doing lists like these!
    ~ Samantha

  10. Jess

    February is always the hardest for me. Even March (and daylight savings time) being around the corner is really helping! It’s been 0 degrees here in Buffalo and it’s just so hard to feel energized and productive sometimes.

  11. Marcella

    I remember these from the old days… Happy lists were my favorite part about your blog. So glad to see you’ve brought them back.

    Sending you lots of love xx

  12. Teresa

    I love this list. I think it’s so important to keep a list handy for those days that are incredibly hard. That’s something I need to work on. Thanks for the reminder!

  13. Keila

    Those are so good-today I was able to head to a couple of stores with my boys, cleaned a little and even had my fave lipstick on. I’m thankful & I’m happy!


  14. Brigett

    Thanks for this, reminds me of the little things in life we have to be grateful for! Have you ever read Ann Voskamp’s “One Thousand Gifts”? It’s a book about Thankfulness and making list of the things we are thankful for..wonderful read-this post reminded me of it!

  15. Chelsea

    I always have loved your happy list and it’s nice to seem them once again. Admittedly I’ve been having a bit of a rough spell and finding the happy has been more difficult. I actually had myself sit down today and find five things that make me terribly happy. It has the craziest way of turning everything around!

  16. RAy

    Hmm.. 10 things that make me happy…

    1. Pulling my hair up off my face
    2. Watching videos of babies giggling
    3. Getting hugs from my lover boy
    4. Waking up and feeling well rested
    5. Remembering my dreams
    6. The ability to travel
    7. A glass of Coca-cola, with 4 ice cubes
    8 . Hearing people speak French
    9. Warm clothing out of the dryer (I feel your pain with this cold weather. I live in Canada)
    10. Seeing that you have a new blog post! Love every single one of them, and your cute little family (Not so little anymore ;))

  17. Melissa

    Totally feeling February’s wrath as well! I feel like we’re all losing our minds a little. I just want to see GREEN and flowers and sun. And not check the weather only to see no end to this cold in sight… It really messes with you! But also makes you appreciate the little things, like green grass and leaves on the trees and birds chirping. March is almost here though! I feel like that’s the turning point :) we can only hope.


  18. Alexandra

    1-Sunny shiny days, even during cold weather.
    2- Doing my makeup.
    3-Love to paint my nails. It is so hard now when I have 3 little ones under 4
    4- Flowers
    5- A clean house
    6- When I get a chance to read
    7- Watching the sunrise
    9- Cuddles with my little ones.
    10- Looking at pictures of my besutiful island of Puerto Rico.

  19. Charity

    Your list gave me butterflies. So many good moments on your happy list!

  20. Wendi

    Yay! The Happy List is back! I always loved those.

  21. Family reunions and powerful prayer meetings make me terribly happy. Enjoy your weekend everyone!

  22. tilly

    even just the title of this post made me smile as i knew it was going to be a good one! your list is the best, they are oh-so-true! not relevant to this post but one on your last post and from your recent instagram feed… i would love love LOVE to know about your past in dance if you don’t mind to share? all i really know is that you went to juilliard and some things that you have mentioned here and there. so if you ever decided to do a post on your dance background, i know there would be many of us who would love it! and maybe some photos too… :) anyway, this is another lovely post like always naomi!

  23. shannon

    going to bed!!! I do a dance on the inside when I get to pull those warm cozy covers over my head and snuggle until my bed is warm. Also getting a good book at the library, reading in bed. I live for reading in bed. Nothing feels more luxurious.

    There is something else that makes me feel incredible peace and happiness but I can’t do it justice here so I shall email you about it! I think it will be useful to you.

  24. diana

    why, reading your blog of course! :) + building legos, having pretty flower arrangements around my room, getting home from school knowing that i can sleep peacefully since i don’t have homework (ohh, yes!), making ppl laugh, little toiletries, my boyfriend hugging me unexpectedly, pizza, discovering new cool stores, life :)

  25. Ariel

    Those were some of my fave posts of yours in the past! I’m so happy to see you making one again! :) I agree the winter is brutal. I have developed a bit of a fear for winter because it’s really the worst season for me mentally. Depression is something I struggle with and the winter is definitely the worst time for it too. Sadly this year has literally been doing but illness for me since it started so I don’t feel like there’s too much on my happy list lately but maybe I should try to force myself to write one out and see if it helps put some stuff in perspective. Hang in there, spring is right around the corner!

  26. Lexie

    It really, truly makes me so happy when you have shared a new blog post! I have two little ones and not a ton of time to catch up on blogs, so I have narrowed my reading list down to only yours: it’s motivational, inspirational, beautiful, and casual all at the same time. I don’t know how you’re managing such regular posting with three babies, but please, please, please continue!

    And, aside from your lovely blog, drinking wine and crocheting with my sisters makes me terribly, infinitely happy. And lucky for me, they live just down the street.

  27. Kelsey

    I can get so lost in Pinterest with hair, nails and outfits.
    Your happy list says wonderful; an unexpected compliment sounds the best!

  28. Planning trips, having a great breakfast with my wife, reading a comment on my blog, a good hair day, putting on make up and chocolate. Yes. Chocolate always makes me happy :)

  29. Fiona

    Great list. We have some things in common like 10, 6 (haha!) and 4. Thanks for sharing. Love also the super cool hat you’re wearing!

  30. Zanna

    1.) First footsteps on virgin snow.

    2.) Brownies baking in the oven.

    3.) The smell of my l’occitane lavender hand cream (the silver lining of constantly chapped hands all winter!)

    4.) That feeling of delicious exhaustion after a really good workout.

    5.) When someone smiles at me across the subway platform for no reason.

    6.) A sweet moment hanging up laundry to dry with my sweetheart, just chatting about our days.

    7.) When patient’s pull through against impossible odds and you go home feeling so accomplished and grateful inside.

    8.) Coming home to Berlin for my birthday weekend!

    9.)….to a home made meal of all my favoirte foods…

    10.) And looking around the table at all the faces that matter most and just drowing is thankfulness for all these wonderful blessings :)


  31. 8 is my happiness too :)

  32. Hey Rita

    This winter has been pretty rough on me as well. It might not have been as harsh as NYC’s because you guys got all the crazy blizzards, but I’m so done with it. I can only think of sunnier and slightly warmer days!

    What a nice happy list :)


  33. Victoria

    You are seriously gorgeous Naomi on this picture.
    Just like you the shining sun makes me happy. It finally came out today after so many rainy days in Paris and i’m getting excited about spring and skirts already.
    Going to bed next to my man every night also makes me so happy every day!
    Thanks for this uplifting post, I would love to go to NYC soon, even with the cold weather.
    Have a nice day.

  34. Nanette

    love this. it’s so nice to write down what is making you happy every once in a while! xo.

  35. Leslie

    Finding these little moments of bliss is key for surviving a brutal season. The northeast has been pummeled–and looking at the forecast only makes it worse! But it’s finding that balance of living in the present (when your man wears that one cologne) and putting stock in future happy things (planning those beach vacations).

    xx, leslie

  36. #10 all the way… but when I smell his Kenneth Cole Reaction Cologne on another man… I’m like: “NOOOOOO that’s my husbands smell. Don’t wear his cologne and stand in front of me at the check out line in Target BAHH!”

  37. Lauren

    YES! I love happy lists! It’s fun to see how they change as you grow older. You’ve put me in the mood to write one of my own now.. :)


  38. Mmmm! Yes- I love this list. I’m sitting by a window on this bright sunny day, and it feels amaaaazing

    Warm Regards,

  39. Charlie

    I have started doing similar posts on my blog last week also and it really helps to keep a positive mindset on daily life. And I don’t find the cleaning thing weird at all, I love it too !

    xx, Charlie.

  40. Lisa

    Great happy list, and fun idea for a post. It’s always a good day when the littles get along, and now I’m extremely curious about that “one cologne”

  41. Brittany

    I hope this means you’re bringing back the happy lists! Here’s mine:

    -When my almost-7 month old sees me & gets so excited, he shakes
    -Ordering pizza after almost 6 months of eating super healthy
    -Getting an unexpected check in the mail from an old employer after my car was broken into & burglarized (tender mercies!)
    -My son’s dimples
    -Family snuggles in the morning – dog, cat, baby, mom & dad!
    -Using up all the dwindling ingredients around the house in a creative dish
    -A late night drinking hot cocoa & chatting with friends
    -My husband’s unfailing tricks to make the baby giggle
    -Writing songs and singing them all over the house
    -Musical bubble baths with the baby

  42. Ashley

    Yay for happy lists! I might even need to try and incorporate this into my life every once in awhile :) On a much different note…I have a beauty question. Would love to know the blush brand and color you use. It looks like a perfect coral, and that happens to be what I’m on the lookout for! Thanks!

  43. Kara

    Such a sweet post! Thank you. This brightened my day!!

  44. hanna

    This is such a sweet little post –Hanna Lei

  45. Becca

    1. Listening to my baby girl giggle her brains out
    2. Diamonds in the snow on a sunny day
    3. Facetiming far away family
    4. When my husband comes home for a surprise lunch
    5. Baking delicious treats
    6. Naps
    7. Feeling this little one’s kicks inside me
    8. The lamp/lighting isle in any store
    9. Freshly flossed teeth
    10. Bubble baths and a good book

  46. Melissa


    As I type this, my kids are running around having the time of their lives with their friends, and it’s the best because i get to have some time on my own, still present of course, but being able to do my own thing.

    Hang in there, spring will come soon!!

  47. wendy

    I wanted to tell you that your Happy List inspired an entire discussion with 70 high school students today! We are drama students and were discussing the Creative Process before our movement project rehearsals..and we got to talking about how happiness is part of the process of being open to ‘art’ and when we are happy we are more apt to listen and respond kindly or openly..I had students make happy lists and report back to the class one Happy Moment of their day. Isn’t it wonderful how blogs can inspire entire discussions – thank you for your lovely blogs and for today’s post that went right into a Catholic High School in Canada!

  48. Kate

    Ooooo! I love the list and the inclination to write one when feeling blue. I could use a little list, too.
    1. Seeing wild turkey’s in our neighborhood.
    2. Watching families point said turkeys out to excited children
    3. My almost 10 month old son smiling at nothing in particular
    4. Sweeping the debris off the entry rug. All other sweeping is for the birds.
    5. Finishing a batch of papers.
    6. Dropping stuff off at Goodwill
    7. When my husband sees I need a pick up, so he picks me up.
    8. Wearing my heavy coat in not too cold weather and being super toasty.
    9. Going through a good hair phase again and finally.
    10. My new song/matra *If you’re feeling bad, do 5 things…

    Feeling a tad better already.

  49. I love looking at room inspirations on pinterest! Makes me super happy!

  50. Melany

    Thank you for this post! The winter blues affect me, too. Especially stuck inside with two young kids. Some things that make me happy are…1) finding hilarious youtube videos and belly-laughing (specifically funny cat videos), 2) watching Audrey Hepburn movies (watching Breakfast at Tiffany’s right now), 3) dressing and combing my two daughters’ hair after a bath, 4) taking Sunday naps after church, 5) watching snow fall from inside a cozy house, 6) talking with my sister on the phone, 7) singing loudly to songs in the car (right now – Chandelier by Sia).

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  52. Jackie

    I love your positivity! I feel the same way about this time of year in New York City!! Off to make my own list now….

    Have a wonderful day!

  53. Kelly

    What a fun list! I love riding the subway alone too, although not at rush hour where everyone has to shove in!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

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  56. Maria

    Number 7 = absolutely! This is something that’s so rare right now, but that I used to do ALL the time. And Number 10 = SWOON!

    Maria xx

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