Drama on the internet? People come in droves. A smack down between two powerhouses? Their minions jump in and start tearing off each others’ limbs (virtually). A tragedy (or threat of one)? Everyone chimes in. It’s how we’re wired. Why do you think that freeway traffic slows down when driving by a roadside accident? We want to look and point and make commentary and ride the wave of emotions.

I may be wired differently than most. When people are rubber-necking at a fender-bender I ask, “Seriously? You are slowing down for this?” When people write blog posts that perpetuate others’ posts about all things Internet and go into the rabbit hole of drama in order to ride the wave of traffic/comments/whatever you are striving for in this audience of mere hundreds I cannot relate. I shut my browser and walk away. If you are talking about you, I’m in. If you are talking about whatever is “hot” right now, I can’t be bothered. No offense, just stating my interest. Or lack thereof.

My friend Jen wrote a post to the women of the Internet. She asked us to tell her something. I want to tell her something. I want to tell you something.

Anyone who knows me knows that I am generally a “happy” person. I love to laugh, and do so easily.

I am happy in my life, for the most part. I have a faith that gives me inner peace. I am married to someone who balances me perfectly. I have three kids who are more astounding than words could ever convey. I am the primary breadwinner against my will but I am in an environment that makes it doable. I have friends that make me wonder how I got to be surrounded by people so cool. Relationally, I am happy.

There is a different level of happy that has been (mostly) shoved down for almost two years now.

For many years I wanted to be creative but didn’t know how. I tried making wax candles, I tried needlepoint, I tried making handmade cards. While these creative venues are all fine and good I didn’t feel like I had come home until I found photography.

Get me a bunch of flowers (or people) and my camera and I feel happy.

I will sit down to edit the photos and will get lost in the processing of the colors and the levels and the sliders and before I know it hours have gone by.

I am not a patient person (at all. ever) but I will treat each photo independently and give it all of the attention that it needs until I am happy with it.

I spend the entire time with one of those half-smiles on my face.

I have been breaking out of my (editing) rut lately – experimenting with new techniques, trying different edits, learning more about Lightroom and Photoshop.

I don’t have a lot of extra hours in the day, no, but I’ve been eking out time whenever I can (Who needs sleep?) and have been feeling The Happy. I have some photography-related things in the works that have brought The Happy to the level where I have found myself bouncing in my chair. If I were Miss Emily, my arms would be flapping. OK, fine. I might have flapped for a moment or two – I couldn’t help it. Details to follow; I promise.

What makes you happy, friends?

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  1. Jen the Trephinist June 3, 2010 12:42 am edit

    Yay! So happy that you’re happy. :)
    .-= Jen the Trephinist´s last blog ..An open letter to the women of the Internet. =-.

  2. Janssen June 3, 2010 5:17 am edit

    What a lovely post. Good for you for making time for creativity.

  3. Carrisa June 3, 2010 7:07 am edit

    I’ve been struggling lately with figuring out what makes me happy. Besides cute babies and videos on YouTube of people falling down. (those really just make me laugh)

    I spent the holiday weekend redoing my bedroom. Paint, decor, projects. It was hard and I did 90% of it by myself. And while I was complaining at the time, the finished product makes me so happy. And proud that I did it myself.

    I may not be able (or willing) to fix a lot of the things that go wrong in my life, but maybe by bettering where I live it can somehow help me to better how I live.

  4. Laura Radniecki June 3, 2010 7:19 am edit

    Ooo, I’m excited to hear what you have in store!!! Tutorials on LR maybe? I feel like there’s so much capability there [obviously in PS too] and LR seems more simplistic. So I am just dying to learn more!
    .-= Laura Radniecki´s last blog ..Wednesday Wonders =-.

  5. alimartell June 3, 2010 7:41 am edit

    you brought me here under false pretenses! Hahahaha. This isn’t a trainwreck at all…this is so lovely! I feel the photography thing. I FEEL IT when I am behind a camera snapping away at my children. i just hope to someday be half as good as you are behind it!
    .-= alimartell´s last blog ..Geriatric People Walking =-.

  6. Kerri Anne June 3, 2010 7:57 am edit

    Happy is awesome. I’m happy, too. For a million and one reasons, not the least of which being awesome friends like you and Jen.
    .-= Kerri Anne´s last blog ..Bits & Bats =-.

  7. Loralee June 3, 2010 8:06 am edit

    Oh, those are so pretty. You totally have a GIFT, my friend.


    .-= Loralee´s last blog ..No longer skirting the issue. =-.

  8. Kami's Khlopchyk June 3, 2010 8:25 am edit

    Capturing an image that I love, that is what makes me happy. And coffee.

    And my beautiful boys, all three of them.

    I am pretty simple but that’s when I am happiest.

    Thanks for the inspiration, again, those photos are gorgeous. And someone mentioned PS or LR tutorials? SIGN ME UP. Right, like you have time for that eh? ;)
    .-= Kami’s Khlopchyk´s last blog ..Bits and Pieces of Nothing* =-.

  9. Amanda Brown June 3, 2010 9:23 am edit

    Right now, food. :)
    But the more I learn about graphic design and begin to scratch the surface of some of the amazing software programs out there and discover that I am semi-capable of making something COOL, I feel the way you described. Creativity is grand. :)

    PS: Thanks for your phone message. I miss you too. Life is freaking nuts and I need an island escape. Want to come? :)
    .-= Amanda Brown´s last blog ..Crazy Days =-.

  10. jenn June 3, 2010 9:28 am edit

    What a happy post! I think people forget to be happy. They’re too busy to be happy. But it’s more important than just about anything else! Thanks for the reminder.

    So, what makes me happy? My daughter, my dog, my Husband and my new hobby of sewing. I, too, have tried every hobby out there, but sewing allows me to be creative WHILE making something useful. I love it. It makes me happy.

  11. Jen June 3, 2010 9:42 am edit

    Yea … internet drama … whenever I run into that on someone’s blog, I always wonder, WOULD YOU SAY THAT TO HER FACE?????

    So lame.

    Love this post. And your photos. As always.

    Sunshine, natural light to take photos in, quiet evenings, organizing, and non-screaming children make me happy.

  12. hillary June 3, 2010 10:03 am edit

    Right now food is making me happy. I could happily spend hours chopping (carefully! eep!), stirring, cooking, baking, mixing – and let’s not forget tasting – away in my kitchen. I think it’s my therapy. I can focus on one thing and forget the external shite and at the end, I’m left with a yummy treat :)
    .-= hillary´s last blog ..It’s Gonna Be A Glorious Day I Feel My Luck Could Change =-.

  13. Ninabi June 3, 2010 10:25 am edit

    So many ways to be happy!
    Reading emails from friends at dawn with a good cup of coffee.

    Reading the first chapter of an engaging book and knowing there’s at least 300 pages of adventure ahead.

    Hearing our parrots come up with a new, hilariously inappropriate word makes me laugh.

    Laughing with my husband late at night, cracking jokes and zinging one liners back and forth until tears are in our eyes from laughing so hard and turning to the other and saying, It’s like having a sleepover with your best friend every single night!

    Tackling a tough repair job on the house by myself and feeling satisfied and surprised that I was able to do it and save money.

    A phone call from one of our children saying they are doing well. I miss them- but I feel happy knowing that maybe I did do a good job parenting after all if I raised independent adults.

    Happiness is the smell of new house construction.

    Happiness is getting my plumeria to bloom and a potted banana to set fruit.

    Happiness is filing my rescued horse’s hooves without drama or fuss on his part and being secretly delighted that I earned trust that he has refused to give anyone else.

    Happiness is reading of other people’s happiness- of children growing up happy and healthy, bright and beautiful. Happiness is a solid internet connection that lets me take joy in others’ lives.

  14. Heather June 3, 2010 11:08 am edit

    As much as I love the blogs, I must only read the good ones :) I have NO IDEA about this internet blog drama you speak of. Lucky me!

    Skating makes me happy. Sometimes it hurts, sometimes it’s cold, sometimes my team is clicky, but I love to skate.
    .-= Heather´s last blog ..List =-.

  15. Lisa Burt June 3, 2010 11:55 am edit

    Riding my bike makes me happy. My grown kids make me very happy. Your photographs always make me happy, especially the ones of your children they sometimes make me laugh out loud. Love all the photo’s that you post.

  16. Elizabeth June 3, 2010 1:33 pm edit

    MMMMmmmmmm Haaappyyyyyyy….
    Love makes me happy. And also icing and cake :) :)
    .-= Elizabeth´s last blog ..Ka-Boom =-.

  17. Carrie June 3, 2010 1:34 pm edit

    I’ve gone anti-drama myself this week. It feels good.

    I love your photos Angella, I think you should come here with your camera and put me to shame.
    .-= Carrie´s last blog ..Separate Vacations (aka the Brindle gets a new girl) =-.

  18. Hannah June 3, 2010 3:33 pm edit

    I’m so happy that you have an outlet that brings you so much joy. I can absolutely relate because I have a creative outlet that brings me the same kind of joy – it’s a wonderful feeling, and you should cherish it always! Any time it becomes like “work”, I try to step back and remember why I love what I do. And then, I’m back to being in love again.
    .-= Hannah´s last blog ..Tra-la-laaaa!! =-.

  19. sizzle June 3, 2010 5:01 pm edit

    Things that make me happy:

    mail (real mail in my mailbox)
    sending gifts to people
    kids dancing
    a clean & organized desk
    .-= sizzle´s last blog ..Tilling =-.

  20. monstergirlee June 3, 2010 5:38 pm edit

    About a year ago I started keeping a daily journal to help work through some major issues I have going on in my life. MAJOR.
    And after a couple of weeks I decided to start each entry with “Today’s Blessing:”
    Then I have to think back throughout the day and find at least one good thing that happened. Some days I write 3 or 4 or 5 things, other days I really struggle and finally write that both my children are healthy.
    Because some days are… dark and awful. But those are fewer and fewer, tho I still have a hard time finding actual enjoyment on many days.
    My camera has provided me with more of an outlet than most people probably realize. I think you know what I mean with that.

    I went to Jen’s page, but didn’t post anything. Not up to it right now. But it was really fun to read, inspiring too. Thanks for your post Angella. I’m glad to read about good things in store for you!
    .-= monstergirlee´s last blog ..You Capture – Best Shot =-.

  21. Annah June 4, 2010 10:19 am edit

    Love the pictures! :) Thanks for sharing. And of course everyone loves a trainwreck… Lindsay Lohan anyone?

  22. Danica June 4, 2010 11:59 am edit

    I was thinking about this this morning. I was not feeling particularly happy, and nothing is really wrong. I asked myself when I last felt really, really happy. I recalled the best year if my life, and the continual joy I felt. Life was busy but it was fabulous. It was the first year I went back to school and I remember several things in particular that made me really really happy. 1. I discovered that I am smart. I didn’t do well in school as a youth and didn’t graduate, so getting straight A’s in university sent me on a huge euphoric self-esteem high. 2. I re-discovered my love of writing in general, of reading and writing poetry, and I discovered that writing two or three essays a week was not the drudgery the world sometimes makes it out to be, but for me is delightful discovery work. 3. I was able to let go of some of my fears and pre-conceived notions regarding parenting, and my kids flourished. 4. I fell in love with God’s word and work. There was much, much more – but those were the biggies. I’m thankful for that time in my life and I’m feeling inspired to seize hold of some of those things again.
    .-= Danica´s last blog .. =-.

  23. statia June 5, 2010 6:40 pm edit

    I don’t get the internet train wreckage, either.
    .-= statia´s last blog ..I’m convinced he’s trying to make me crazy. Or kill me. Possibly both. =-.

  24. Mama in the City June 6, 2010 9:59 am edit

    This isn’t probably the ‘right’ answer but successful shopping trips make me happy. Going to the spa and having a massage makes me happy. Having freshly shaped waxed eyebrows make me happy. There are lots of obvious things that make me happy, like spending time with my family but these are my more selfish happy inducing things.
    .-= Mama in the City´s last blog ..Playtime! How do you play? =-.

  25. Lisa June 6, 2010 10:14 pm edit

    Being in love. :)


  26. Lisa June 7, 2010 8:21 am edit

    What makes me happy? Sex. Educating and empowering woman. I know that sounds funny but it does. I have now been a consultant (and now almost a director) with Pure Romance for over a year and I LOVE and have found my HAPPY while doing parties. I love when a woman comes up after a party and says “I learned something from you today! Thank you! This was the best party I’ve ever been to and not dirty or raunchy but fun and educating!” That makes me happy.
    .-= Lisa´s last blog ..My Husband Rocks: MHR Friday =-.

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