1. My family. I guess that’s a given and somewhat cliche, but oh so very true. They each, my husband and the kids, know how to push my buttons and make me crazy, but I wouldn’t trade anything in the world for them. My husband is the most supportive, encouraging person I’ve ever met and he makes sure that I know, every day, how much he loves me. The kids are each very affectionate and quick to let me know how much they love me. They also each have a quick wit and an incredible sense of humor.
4. A new box of crayons. Yes, I admit, I find coloring very therapeutic and there is nothing better for coloring than a fresh box of sharp, unused crayons.
5. The smell of fresh-cut grass. I love the sound of a lawn mower on a lazy Saturday morning…well, as long as it’s off in the distance. 😉 And, it’s even better if I can have the windows open so that the smell of the fresh-cut grass can waft in on a summer breeze.
6. A new book by a favorite author. For this bibliophile, it doesn’t get much better than a new book by a favorite author…new-to-me is great, but totally, completely new by an author whose books I’ve nearly worn the cover off is like winning the lottery…well, without the part where I get to pay off my house and buy a new car.
7. Mom’s Night Out. Once a month, our homeschool group’s moms get together for dinner and fellowship. It is very common for this to occur on a day when I can really use the fellowship, commiseration and support. I always come away feeling refreshed and renewed.
8. Mickey D’s sweet tea. Are you beginning to notice an addiction here? I know that I’ve mentioned this sweet tea thing a time or two. I just love my sweet tea…and most days, the 32 ounces of caffeine sure doesn’t hurt anything. I stopped by and got one on the way to music class Wednesday morning. Ah, 32-oz of sweet, pure heaven. 😉
9. Birthday money. I just love birthday money. With me being a SAHM, finances are generally discussed and having money to just do whatever with is rare. However, birthday money is MY money to spend any way I want. I’ve been known to buy something that I’ve wanted for the house, but haven’t really had the money for, or something for Brian or the kids, and, of course, something just for me. The part I like best, though, is having money to do whatever I want with, without feeling guilty.
10. Fresh flowers. I’m not a jewelry person and cards for no reason are nice, but I LOVE fresh flowers. They just make me smile. They brighten up a room and lighten my day. My favorites are big, yellow sunflowers, and fall bouquets are beautiful, but, really, any fresh flowers make my day.
11. My snakes. Yeah, I’ve probably mentioned them before and I know some people think I’m really weird for this (hey, we are weird, unsocialized homeschoolers), but I just love my snakes. I think they are beautiful, graceful, powerful creatures who really can become affectionate…in their own snakey little way.
12. Chili’s. I love Chili’s. It’s one of my favorite places to eat. I love their chips and salsa and I am often reminded of my step-dad when I eat them. He passed away a little over seven years ago and I remember eating with him at Chili’s, from time to time, and enjoy a big bowl of chips and salsa. I’m also impressed with the way they support St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. Each year, on the last Monday in September, they donate all of their profits for the day to St. Jude’s for cancer research. St. Jude’s Day is coming up at Chili’s on September 29 this year. Head on over and enjoy the world’s best chips and salsa while supporting a fantastic cause.
13. An afternoon alone. I love my family and wouldn’t take anything in the world for them (see #1), but an afternoon alone is such a wonderful treat for this stay-at-home-homeschooling mom. I can read a book, surf the Internet, blog, go out browsing…whatever I want! And, all without having to see to the needs of anyone else. These afternoons are few and far between, but I thoroughly enjoy them when the opportunity arises.
Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.