Monday, August 12, 2013

Happiness Just Happens by Aimée Thurlo


Recently after pulling a muscle right below my rib cage, I was feeling blue. True to the song, "My Favorite Things" I started to think about the things that make me happy.

 
First there's David. Let me give you an example why. Knowing I was feeling down in the dumps, he made fudge for me, the kind Weight Watchers says is okay. The recipe is to die for and since it doesn't use phony sugar substitutes, it tastes fabulous.

 
David, my husband of forty-three years, came into my life in a totally unplanned way. We met at the beginning of July when I moved next door to him and July 31st we were married.

 
Then there's Gabriel, my one hundred pound poodle. My previous standard poodle companion, a rescue I'd adopted, had passed away and my heart was broken. A friend I'd met online, a person I didn't even actually meet till years later, wrote and told me about a poodle in South Carolina. He was huge (like my companion who'd passed away) and once I saw the photo, I fell in love. The dog was a refugee from yet another rescue organization which hadn't been able to place him, but the second I saw his face, I was in love. We had him flown here to New Mexico, and he's now my best bud. He and I are always together. He's never more than a foot or two away.

 
 
Our book for Heartwarming happened in much the same unplanned way. I had this terrific idea for a book - the theme was about never giving up.  To me, obstacles are life's way of forcing us to be creative as we find ways around, over or through them. 

 
Also, I love the creative arts (I crochet and knit), and like the story's hero, my brother-in-law and nephew have their own architectural firm. They fought the odds to pursue the dream, and worked hard to keep it alive during the recession. 

 
Although I was very excited about developing this new idea, I wasn't really sure there'd be a market for it. Then one day, as I was scrolling down Facebook, I happened across a description of Heartwarming in my newsfeed. I realized that the story was a perfect match for them, so I contacted Marsha Z., and the rest is history.

 
What all this has taught me is that the best things in life are usually unplanned. They're gifts that mostly find us, not the other way around - though a nudge in the right direction never hurts.

 
What have you discovered about the quest for happiness?

13 comments:

  1. I couldn't agree more! I met my husband on a 'writing day' during a time of my life where a relationship was the furthest thing from my 'wish list' lol. The family that started that day is the best thing I could never have 'planned'. I often say, I could never write a love story as good as mine:)

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  2. Jennifer, I keep thinking of what somebody said - that life is what happens when we're making other plans. I never realized back then how true that really was!

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  3. My situation is similar. I met Ron when I went to work in the secretarial pool at the Los Angeles Times. I was sent upstairs to make copies (a 10-storey building with one copy machine - does that tell you how long ago this was? November, 1966) There were too many buttons on the Xerox and I'm completely non-mechanical. (shows you how bad I am that I think of buttons as mechanical) Anyway - Ron, a low-level executive in Merchandising, shared his office with the copier and came to help me. And he's been helping me ever since. (Like that wonderful flamboyant character in UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN says (paraphrasing) Don't go looking for ladybugs, just lie down in the grass and they'll crawl all over you.)

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  4. Oh, Muriel, if any bug crawled over me, I'd run away screaming!!! LOL! Ladybugs included. But that's cool, that you married a man in your field of interest. That always helps as the years drift by.... Commonality.

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  5. Hi Aimee,
    Thanks for sharing your stories, I especially enjoy the story of finding a rescue and poodle to boot - my favorite dog and its good to know he now has a good home. You give me much hope in reading this post. I've recently went out to Maryland from Minnesota to see Nora Roberts for a book signing - I went because I saw a post about the book signing an brunch and thought why not give it a go. I'm so glad I did. I hardly get out of my apartment 1st due to asthma which is getting better now and 2nd since I work remotely most days for work. It was so good to take a long weekend and travel further than I ever have before. I realized I could do it. I also found many ways I needed to improve my life style just from the accepting, happy way I was embraced by the fans of Nora and the great people of Maryland. I'm back home now - in the process of getting more exercise, eating more healthy food. I'm also pursuing reading more and writing for myself and for eventually getting published. I'm so glad I found your name on Author Buzz after I enrolled in a book club at my local library. Your books and attitude on Facebook have inspired me to continue with my quest to healthy weight, lifestyle and writing career. Thanks again and Peace to you and your husband.

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  6. Melissa, for years I was the same as you - with asthma. These days, thanks to a very special inhaler, I come and go as I wish. Mind you, when I go to the New York, I often have to tell people to slow down - I can get to where they're going, just not at their speed. That's the key you know. Don't try to do things the same way as someone without asthma. Accomplish what they do - but your way. :-)
    Hugs!

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  7. Thanks, Amiee - good advice - I've been getting better with 13 years of allergy shots - but eventually my medicine has becoming something I need a lot less. I think you're right - you have to travel at your pace - goes for moving, eating and life style. Maybe sometime I'll get to New York too. All things seem possible now. Thanks again for all your posts and books. reading has always been my way to see the world and I find your books very descriptive and involving. Hugs to you all too.

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  8. I love the song, "Favorite Things". Julie Andrews sang it so well that I can still hear it if I try. It's a good reminder to count our blessings. In the balance, there will always be more good, though sometimes I have a hard time seeing it. Thank you, Aimee, for this great reminder to keep things in perspective. One of my favorite things about Heartwarming is wonderful authors like you :)

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    1. Karen, you're a beautiful young woman with a promising career. You remind me of a song from Gypsy - "You'll be great, gonna have the whole world on a plate. Starting here starting now....Now's your inning.Stand the world on its ear." That's one of my favorite musicals, along with Sound of Music.

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  9. I think the most important thing in the quest for happiness is to follow your own path. What makes me happy may not be what everyone else needs or likes. I've also found that it helps not to envy other people too much. It does help to sit down and count your blessings. There are always people better off than you and there are always people worse off than you. Just do what you can to keep yourself as healthy as you can and hope that you can stay happy as well. My father and sister both suffered from depression in the days when mental health issues were not given much consideration. My sister has found that she likes to go to Curves to keep her health and happiness levels up. I prefer a walk in the park to boost my spirits.

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    1. I love walking in the wooded areas around our home, Kaelee. It's a place called the "Bosque" though it's not heavily wooded, in comparison to what people in more humid climates normally see. Writers in particular are prone to depression, but there's nothing like a friend to bring your spirits back up, online or off, and of course, CHOCOLATE!! The groups here is special. They can always make you smile.

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