Five Nice Things


Writer Siobhan O’Connor and her friend Anna made up a game called Five Nice Things. At dinner, they simply take turns naming things that are nice. “It can be a thing that makes you happy, a compliment for the other person, a win at work, ‘This broccoli is tasty,’ whatever,” writes Siobhan. “It’s a bit sappy, but it’s not the sappiest, and the rules were: Don’t overthink it, and be specific.” As she explains, “it’s just a less-corny name for a gratitude exercise.”

What are your five things? I’ll leave mine in the comments, too. xo

P.S. More dinner games, and how to stay cheerful this winter.

(Photo by Melanie Defazio/Stocksy. Five Things via Kottke.)

  1. iLa says...

    – the walk I took today during my lunch break
    – the breathwork I did this morning
    – the long sleep I got from last night
    – the new workchair I bought my self yesterday
    – the books I got for free from a friend for my little boy
    Thank you Joanna for such a fun and nice exercise!

  2. Mrun says...

    – A “commendable” performance rating at work!
    – Looking forward to the Christmas Holidays. I am celebrating long distance with my partner’s parents for the first time ever. Getting to experience the ‘biracial’ part of this relationship now :)
    – My Hellofresh box, of all things. It’s getting me excited to cook again. Baby steps to going out grocery shopping and meal planning on my own
    – I discovered Frasier for the very first time with my partner, a few weeks ago. And it has become our little lunch ritual to catch an episode everyday. It’s getting me through my workdays
    – Presents ;)

  3. K says...

    – dog curls up on my feet under the covers (he loves being under the covers!)
    – I’m in my first trimester of pregnancy and have been feeling really sick. My husband runs out and buys me ginger ale.
    – watching videos of the first vaccines being administered!
    – walking the dog and talking on the phone to friends
    – really thick hand cream

  4. Bren says...

    1. My daughter’s extreme joy over the sprinkles I bought to decorate cookies. “MOM THEY ARE HEART SHAPED! THIS IS THE BEST DAY EVER!!!”
    2. The 30 minutes of silence in my kitchen before all my kids wake up.
    3. The frosty grass outside my window while I sit in the silence
    4. Delivering Christmas cards by hand and watching my daughter giggle as she figures out how mailboxes open and close.
    5. Driving around to look at all the Christmas lights in our neighborhood while my kids sit in our laps in the car

  5. Jessica Melindy says...

    – listening to the radio on the drive to work this morning (they were sharing stories of kindness)
    – My husband touching my back when he walks past me
    – Making faces with my sister on family facetime (there are no words but we both understand)
    – I made vegan carmelized onion dip last night for a small get together tonight (we are in Nova Scotia and can gather with small groups of friends)
    – dreaming about a sweater to knit next year

  6. – starting my lifelong dream business
    – when my twins kiss my nose
    – husband sparkly eyes when looking at me
    – friends texts
    – long, hot showers


  7. rose says...

    1. my 7 week olds gummy smiles + giggles
    2. the first sip of coffee
    3. christmas lights on the tree + on houses, they make cold, early nights so much cozier
    4. an enrapturing audiobook while doing house chores
    5. a personal letter in the mail

  8. Katie says...

    1. Every time my 2 year old son randomly asks me for a big hug during the day

    2. Taking walks at night in the snow and looking at all the Christmas lights

    3. Going sledding with a new mom friend and my son yesterday while it snowed on us

    4. Finally feeling like this city we’re living in is “home” after moving across the country during the pandemic

    5. FaceTimes with my mom and dad who live far away

  9. I do this in my head whenever I’m feeling a little blue, or simply just stressed. It always helps shift my perspective!

    My five nice things for today would be:
    – figuring out why my toddler has started waking in the night (we didn’t adjust the heater sufficiently in his room when the temps dropped, oops!)
    – vegetable spring rolls with soy sauce for lunch
    – an uninterrupted hour of present wrapping
    – a free last minute slot at the local play centre
    – clean sheets for bed tonight

    Have a lovely weekend guys xx

  10. Chrissie says...

    1. When you smile at a baby and they smile back.
    2. The way that dog’s run to the door when you say “do you want to go for a walk?”
    3. The feeling when you wake up with plenty of time before your alarm goes off.
    4. When little children have conversations with each other.
    5. When you get a text from a friend that just says “how are you?”

  11. E says...

    -all the coffee
    -working with kids! they are such a light in this dark time
    -my cat’s fluffy fur
    -the cold and snow (working on reframing my thoughts about this and I think it’s working)

  12. Jane says...

    The cutest little feet of my newborn nephew, that I haven‘t seen yet due to the pandemie

    My daughters beutiful smile

    Breastfeeding FaceTime sessions with my little sister

    Christmas decorations in the neighbours window

    One hour more to sleep, that I probably have right now till my daughter is awake

  13. Fanny says...

    Reading these comments is so heartwarming! I’ve starred your post so that I can read more comments on a grey day, or when I need to see nuggets of happiness in the world :)
    1. Being with my family for Christmas
    2. A hot water bottle that warms you and your bed up immediately
    3. When my friends tag me in a meme or send me an instagram post, I love that something- whatever it is- reminds them of me.
    4. The vanilla scented candles that make my new apartment feel more like home
    5. A sunlight alarm clock during the Danish winter

  14. Laurel says...

    1. My kids being nice to each other, unprompted
    2. My husband making coffee in the morning
    3. Being told by colleagues “the office is different when you’re not here.” In a good way.
    4. Spending time at the beach (south coast in Australia) with lots of family before Christmas
    5. My dog collecting her pets from me in the morning. She always knows when I’m just awake enough to come nudge my hand to ask.

  15. Agnès says...

    1.cuddling at night with my husband 2. The first sip of the morning maté 3. Preparing the morning advent surprise by our elves for my 7 y old 4. Being awaken by my 7 y old “mom come and see what the elves have prepared!” 5. Opening the Window and knowing it is warm and the night will maybe not have been excruciating for our homeless friend Baktash. My 5 things for today love from Paris.

  16. Jimena says...

    1. Boyfriend sweetly tucking my feet every morning before he leaves for work.
    2. It took a lot of tears and headaches but I finally applied to that master’s degree!!
    3. Listening to poetry and gardening podcasts while I knit.
    4. My favorite corner on the sofa + a blankie + lots of books from the marvelous system of Finnish libraries.
    5. This new possibility of a project involving translating one of my favorite poets, the thought of which just makes me feel absolutely elated.
    + 6. The solstice and Yuletide are coming! Yay for longer days.

  17. Kylee says...

    1. Seeing my kids hug and say I love you to each other. My heart SWELLS every time.
    2. The smell of coffee wafting into my bedroom in the morning.
    3. My husbands humor.
    4. Taking my 16 yr old dachshunds for walks and watching their little ears flap up and down just like when they were puppies.
    5. Reading this COJ before bed.

  18. C says...

    (1) When my programmed treadmill walk finished exactly the same time as the Season 2 Episode 2 of The Crown that I was watching.
    (2) My four yr old son unassumingly putting his hand on my arm while watching tv. I hope he never grows out of this.
    (3) My middle child giving me her chocolate from her advent calendar because she just some teeth and she wasn’t feeling it. SCORE!
    (4) The laugh my husband and I shared after opening a big box that came in the mail. We didn’t know what we had ordered that would come in a box that big. After opening it and taking out all the bubble wrap, it was just ONE pair of underwear that I had ordered. Ridiculous.
    (5) A bud of a leaf that [finally] appeared on my baby calathea orbifolia plant.

  19. Rachael says...

    -seeing my kids in the morning
    -my milk frother/warmer for said coffee
    -that i got engaged to my husband 6 years ago today
    -happy 8th night of hannukah

  20. Sarah says...

    -slept through our alarm, but still had time for a quiet coffee because we all work/school remotely right now (silver linings)
    – delivered virtual holiday party bags to my students today
    – it snowed here today! So pretty!
    – at bedtime, my girls started an impromptu carol singing session and the cat came and snuggled in while we sang in bed
    -my friend and I are leaving porch drop off treats for each other all week….today it was cheese, homemade cherry cordial and a lottery ticket – I won a dollar!!

  21. Annie K. says...

    -hot chocolate
    -my friend’s brand new baby
    -the future Biden Administration
    -partner taking out trash
    -rain last night

    I challenged myself to do mine before reading others’! Now the fun really begins.

  22. Erin says...

    ~having the courage to reach out for professional mentorship from a wise woman and her saying yes
    ~facetime calls to my sister-feels so good to laugh out loud with her even this far apart
    ~Chris Farley, always
    ~moments of enjoyment in my new position at work and seeing the finish line of what feels like a grueling at transition
    ~the fun of fake glasses lol

  23. Hali says...

    1) The Derry Girls Bakeoff episode made my whole week. I haven’t laughed that hard in months. I still can’t think of the word battenberg without my nose tingling.
    2) Almond Nog in my coffee. It’s like 3% gross and 97% incredible.
    3) Assembling a changing table with my husband was a shockingly idllic and precious experience.
    4) Our walks around the marina every night- all the holiday lights on the boats!
    5) Social Media photos and videos of healthcare workers getting vaccinated make me so weepy. An ER nurse friend got vaccinated today! The first person I personally know! What light! What hope! What an unbelievable feat!

    I needed this exercise, woah.

  24. kristen says...

    1. sitting with new friends outside around their fire pit
    2. ordering our family’s first christmas cards (husband, me, dog)
    3. my parents have moved 35 min from us!
    4. ordered a buche de noel for christmas from a local bakery
    5. giving my wonderful husband a record player and pizza cookbook for christmas!

  25. Katie says...

    – Ted Lasso
    – hearing U2’s Christmas Baby Please Come Home randomly on the radio
    – my mailbox filled with real mail
    – my soon to be 6 yo daughter in a leotard
    – Xmas lights pj pants my Mom bought me and I laugh every time I put them on

  26. Allyson says...

    1) The immense outpouring of love and support I got when I announced my run for City Council this week. My first campaign! Eek!
    2) Bike rides in the cold
    3) My husband’s sudden and impressive mastery of soups. I am the luckiest.
    4) A surprise, emotional phone call from my Grandma. Some tough stuff, some lovely stuff. A call reflective of our full love for each other.
    5) Giving myself a pass on “doing Christmas right” in a year that our income has decreased significantly.

  27. NL says...

    1: target drive-up
    2: bralettes
    3: elf on the shelf pooping chocolate (hehe)
    4: news reports about people leaving california (more space for me lol)
    5: listening to my 5 year old explain to my 3 year old why he needs to wash his hands. littles talking about big things. man. it’s amazing.

  28. Erin says...

    1. I made a new recipe for dinner tonight. It was easy and really good: Hot and sour soup from NYT.
    2. Tomorrow is my kids’ last day of school before vacation, and we sure are looking forward to the break!
    3. My son made up a funny song about knights today.
    4. I bought myself a potato ricer for Christmas.
    5. My geranium has lots of blooms.

  29. Jenn P says...

    1 – I have one more day left on the first job back after newly implemented covid procedures. It’s been a struggle and a learning experience and stressful, but we got it done and I’m okay.
    2 – I get to go home to Colorado on Saturday.
    3. I decorated our apt in LA pretty intensely this year, and I love coming home to the lights
    4. A not terrible bottle of wine from a vendor who notoriously gifts super cheap and shi**y wine
    5. I get to go to bed soon.

  30. Abbey says...

    1. saw a cloud shaped like a platypus today
    2. when my toddler friend smooshes her cheek against mine
    3. knowing I’d get into the grad program I applied for, and then getting in
    4. meditation
    5. randomly talking in-depth about Elvis over dinner

  31. Monica says...

    We did this at supper! Here are the lists:

    7 year old:
    1. Watching my baby brother play
    2. Special movie nights
    3. Building with Legos
    4. When dad does bedtime reading
    5. Listening to my piano teacher play songs

    4 year old
    1. Eating chocolate
    2. Eating bananas
    3. Eating Brussels sprouts
    4. Eating birthday cake
    5. Eating candy canes

  32. Kaylie says...

    1. Reading childrens book as I put them away at work. Today’s cry came from Petra by Marianna Coppa
    2. Finding a copy of Sex & The City in my Little Free Library, after watching the series for the first time this week
    3. One of my colleagues putting on K-pop as a mood booster at 4:30 in the afternoon when we’re all flagging and ready to be done for the day
    4. My landlord has a wooden sled on our front porch. We haven’t gotten much snow yet. I think it’s for decoration?? I love her
    5. Taking my shoes off at the end of the day and putting on my fluffy slippers :)

  33. Poppy says...

    1: Beautiful morning light and dramatic clouds after a rainy night
    2: My partner walking me to work and telling me I’ll be OK as I head into the building (I’m a teacher and teaching in person is terrifying these days)
    3: Free lunch for the faculty donated from a generous local grocer whose kids attend our school
    4: Painting my nails with sparkly gold polish
    5: A friend checking in on me at the end of the day

    PS: I write a list like this every night and number it sequentially. After about 3 years, I have over 8000 “good things” in my notebooks. I like to look back on them from time to time to see what I was happy for on this a year or two or 3 ago.

  34. Susannah says...

    – Getting comfy and cozy in the bed and watching my favorite shows on my laptop while my fiance sleeps next to me.
    – Taking fresh chocolate chip cookies out of the oven.
    – Seeing new plants growing from cuttings or seeds.
    – Making ginger tea using ginger from plants in the garden.
    – Crossing things off a list!

  35. Rebecca says...

    1. my winter boots for being made in the usa, stylish, cozy, and warm enough to play for hours in the snow with my kiddo and pup
    2. our paper snowflakes on the windows
    3. Miranda, the BBC sitcom that makes me warm inside no matter how much the world is stressing me out
    4. our librarians for coming up with creative and safe ways to make sure we can access books during the pandemic (and the huge pile of cookbooks, poetry collections, short stories, best sellers, plant guides, and DVDs sitting besides me on the couch)
    5. anti-anxiety medication for helping me live more in the moment with those I love after years of spiraling


  36. Olivia says...

    I wish I had a button to “like” 90% of these comments!

    • Same! A lot of common themes too, which is giving me all the feels

  37. Anonymous says...

    Ok so many people listed their husbands!

    I hate that I’m grumpy. I’m usually a positive Person but my husband got laid off and he took a job closer to his parents which is hours away from us and seeing him weekends isn’t cutting it. The kids and I miss him.

    I have lovely parents I’m staying with but I miss being in my own home, my own tub, my TV, my cozy sofa blanket. I’m mourning being home in my space with my husband. And covid is making everything so f’ing complicated.

    I miss

    -Sitting on the sofa with our feet intertwined
    – talking to my BFF in my own house
    – doing my own dishwasher
    – getting to stay home
    – being in charge

    Ok now 5 things I appreciate

    1. Glasses for my kid
    2. My mom’s chilli
    3. My cousins and bff
    4. Having a grandmother who loves me
    5. Being healthy and having children.

  38. Lindsey says...

    I just read the essay “Allegiance to Gratitude” from Braiding Sweetgrass today, and now this post! Clearly I am being nudged in a direction. :)

    1) We just moved from CA to MN last month and I marvel every day at how beautiful winter light is.
    2) I’ve gotten over my fear of failing at baking bread, and now I make it all the time! The smell is the possibly the world’s best smell??
    3) My cat is much cuddlier in the colder climate and now has to be near me at all times. :)
    4) How my husband wakes me up every single morning with a cup of hot coffee and swish of opening curtains to see the morning sky.
    5) I now appreciate the power of a good sock for keeping you warm! I’m especially in love with my Smartwool socks.

  39. Kaitlin says...

    1. My daughter letting me braid her hair. “Trois tresses” (three braids), she said tonight.

    2. Being on break for the next 14 days. I work in an essential job on-site and I am ready to curl up at home.

    3. High rise underwear from Arq. Truly the most comfortable and sexy.

    4. The cookie exchanges that have been happening in my neighbourhood. We’re all leaving tins on each other’s doorsteps.

    5. The smell of my real, 5 foot tall, Christmas tree. We haven’t had a full sized tree in 8 years because we were always travelling. The scent helps me forget what we’re missing by staying in town this season

  40. E says...

    1. I just hung up 19 pictures in our new house’s hallway. I painted/drew all of them :)
    2. I washed my hair yesterday so I’m enjoying that it looks nice today
    3. My rum balls are getting closer to my grandma’s
    4. The color green
    5. I had a good phone conversation with my mom today. (I sometimes do a version of this with her if she’s in a negative mood)

    • angela says...

      Any tips on the rum balls? I’m making them today!

  41. Nat says...

    1) Our normally lean cat getting chunky and fluffy for the winter

    2) Squeezing said cat

    3) I saw a small rainbow yesterday while driving

    4) The warm glow of the Christmas tree

    5) The crinkly corners of the smiling eyes of my parents with their masks on when I visit. I can’t wait to hug them again after we’ve all been fully immunized.

  42. M says...

    1. When my fiancé makes pasta, any pasta, for dinner.
    1.5 The fact that I can now call him my fiancé ;)
    2. The way candles and Christmas tree lights look at night.
    3. When it’s really cold out but also really sunny.
    4. Our cat when he poofs up his fur.
    5. The sound of my mom’s voice, even over FaceTime.

  43. Mary Ellen Mitchell says...

    1. My kids enthusiastically taking over every part of advent… Lighting candles, reading scripture, saying prayers, blowing out said candles
    2. My 4 year old making fart noises to Christmas carol tunes
    3. The fake fireplace we just bought that gives off real heat and refocuses the living room energy away from the TV
    4.Costco dark chocolate covered pretzels. Try these. Yes.
    5. Inviting people over for winter bonfires… We’ve never really done this before but it’s our only social option these days and it makes me feel scandinavian

  44. Marisa says...

    1. Our kids telling us how much they love coming home.
    2. Seeing Lucy, my grand dog’s joy at the beach.
    3. Feeling like I’m getting to a really interesting place in my paintings.
    4. Delicious oatmeal with macadamia nut milk and blueberries for breakfast.
    5. Having a random stranger tell me I made her day when I told her she had beautiful hair at Whole Foods.

  45. Patti says...

    1. Salty olives
    2. Finishing report cards in the evening (the glass of wine helped everyone do just a little better)
    3. My dad beginning to open up more now
    4. My cat’s weird vocalizations
    5. Quiet mornings when the air feels all wet and magical

  46. Loren says...

    Taking in a very sick and cranky foster kitty, nursing her back to health, and having her sleep on my chest every night and sit behind me on my chair all day while I’m working on my computer
    My weekly video chat with friends who moved away
    My niece calling me on FaceTime and handing the phone to her kids, who tell me how much they miss me and do silly things to make me laugh
    Being so deeply thankful that my niece’s mother didn’t die of covid when she got it in March
    In a month we will have a new president.

  47. AMy says...

    My 7 year son’s love for Elsa because “boys can love princesses mom.”
    Fresh Air podcast
    Snow days
    CBD gummies
    This blog!! Love Cup of Jo

  48. Ilana says...

    1. the sound (and mental image) of my 7-year old son lifting my 2-year old daughter out of her crib every morning
    2. my husband preparing the coffee beans/fresh water for our coffeemaker every night so all I have to do in the morning is press “brew”
    3. cooking early dinners for my family while listening to NPR
    4. my kids FaceTiming with my mom multiple times per day (thank goodness for FaceTime…they haven’t seen her in person in a year and miss her terribly)
    5. bonfires in the winter

  49. SD says...

    1. The bowl of cherry ice cream, with a banana and chocolate chips, that I just finished savoring.
    2. Eagerly anticipating the repairman’s visit tomorrow to fix my dishwasher, so that I will once again have an ally in the endless battle against multiplying dishes.
    3. The joy of living in my own, cozy, delightful home.
    4. A breakthrough in therapy today.
    5. Settling in to continue watching my way through the Lord of the Rings Trilogy for the hundredth enjoyable time.

  50. Katie says...

    This might get lost, but my high school bestie and I had a similar and yet more specific game. It was “a nice thing about so and so.” We would choose a person in our class and trade hyper specific nice things we liked about them. Extra points if it was an unpopular or difficult to like person, if it was a super obscure or original thing, or if we had done the person multiple times and thought of a new thing. Honestly I wish I could still play this game.

    • L says...

      Wow this is such a beautiful thing! We all need more of this these days. xo

  51. C says...

    – my coworker’s australian shepard, Ada, playing in the snow. She leaps around like a bunny rabbit and will eat the snowballs you make for her.
    – some very yummy chicken tortilla soup I made yesterday
    – lying on the couch after working all day
    – finally figuring out gifts for my MIL and SIL – houseplants!
    – watching my husband warm his butt in standing in front of the woodstove

  52. Laura says...

    – Christmas cookies
    – Neighbors who are friendly and watch out for each other
    – A brisk walk
    – My poodles’ wagging tails
    – Cuddly quilts and blankets

  53. Michelle says...

    Ok so maybe not fun, but definite gratitude:
    1. I listened to my instinct and it saved my dad’s life yesterday.
    2. We live in a country where healthcare is free.
    3. Kind doctors who keep me updated on his progress.
    4. The ability to video-message even when we can’t be there in person due to covid.
    5. Modern medicine.

    • Hope says...

      Well done, Michelle! I hope he makes a full recovery, and that you’re able to see him in person as soon as safe. xx

  54. Nae says...

    1, I just got married to my partner of 9 years
    2. Snowy days and dark chocolate hot cocoa
    3. Finally sending that work email that I’ve been avoiding
    4. Spending time with my mom
    5. Holding hands with my partner as we drift to sleep

    • suki says...


  55. Kelly says...

    1. Steamy windows
    2. Soft, warm baby cheeks after waking from a nap
    3. Crisp nights walks in the crunchy snow
    4. Showering!!! (Currently at home with a 6 yo remote learner, 3 yo and 14 mo old 🤪 so showers are hit and miss)
    5. A book you just CAN’T put down even though you should REALLY go to bed

    • Kay says...

      What book??? If a mama of 3 little ones is willing to sacrifice sleep for a book, it must be good!

  56. Margaret says...

    -morning coffee – reliable, comforting, and sensory
    -being able to wear all of my sweatshirts and chunky sweaters multiple times this year because we have so much time to lounge at home
    -time to quilt homemade oven mitts for my sister!
    -a grad school mentor who pushes me, but with lots of truth and gentleness
    -people who say yes to me when they could have said no – students giving unsolicited compliments, friends listening to me ramble, all of it.

    • Tere says...

      Living in New Zealand! After a crazy 2020 ( I realize I’m not alone here) and spending a good third of the year being cooped up in an apartment in Mexico City, terrified that just going to the supermarket would give us Covid, I am overjoyed to be home.

      Teaching Early Childhood, in person, which is a job full of affection and fun. I am so lucky to be able to do this.

      Summer! The sunshine, the beaches, everything is in bloom, running about with my friends, all of it.

      Dating someone lovely, who is kind and takes me to vineyards.

      My Dad, whom I live with and who is my fellow Covid escapee. I am grateful that living with a parent has actually proved to be fun.

  57. Gretchen says...

    1. Taking a Spanish class with my sister
    2. The man who owns the car parked behind me and shoveled all of the snow between our cars, not just 1/2 way.
    3. How my Christmas tree makes my apartment so homey
    4. My friend who dropped off wine from Trader Joe’s, because she knows I am scared to go to go into stores
    5. Finding a book I had wanted to read in a Little Free Library while on a walk

    • Agnès says...

      You should frame these they are wonderful!

    • Jo says...

      I adore cute free library boxes in the neighbourhoods… and finding a book that suits you is a win!! Your nice list – and all of these nice lists – make me smile while I’m drinking my coffee. Besides, I had a brief friendship with a girl named Gretchen in the 70’s, and seeing your name gave me a happy memory. Merry Christmas Gretchen,

    • suki says...

      Just remember to sanitize the heck out of that book and let it rest untouched for two weeks.

  58. Vish says...

    1. Cozy blankets to snuggle, read or sleep under
    2. Holiday movies
    3. Holiday candles
    4. Gingerbread houses
    5. A warm cup of freshly brewed tea, coffee or cider

    • Lisa says...

      Yes these are amazing!

  59. Mara says...

    -A hot shower after a cold surf (aka winter in LA)
    -My cat’s various meows and chirps to tell me what she’s thinking.
    -My boyfriend’s enthusiasm for cooking new recipes
    -A crusty baguette with salted butter
    -Watching Little Women during the holiday season (the version with Winona Ryder!)

    • Annie K, says...


    • suki says...

      -I found gmo-free baguettes at the Fred Meyer for Thanksgiving stuffing which was a VERY nice and unexpected thing.
      -Hummingbirds at the feeders who seem to watch me through the windows like I’m tv
      -The (masked) handyman who is so respectful
      -A surprisingly peaceful day
      -impressed by how we are, as a whole, universally adapting and responding to this viral invasion

  60. Nicole says...

    1. Baby snuggles
    2. Fresh snow
    3. Husband digging my car out of said snow
    4. Bottomless coffee
    5. My COVID vaccine appointment next week

    • Agnès says...

      Your covid vaccine got me really excited !

    • LT says...

      YESSSSSS!!!!!!!!!! This makes me SO happy to see people getting vaccines!!!!! I’m literally crying with joy, you made my day!

  61. Olivia Jane says...

    My dear friend Margaux introduced to me texted gratitude lists. Most days, we each text each other 5 quick things we’re grateful for. The only rule: no repeats. (Which you can get around by being really specific.) Here are my five today:
    – Margaux, for this practice and being my partner in it
    – Meeting my husband 12 years ago today!
    – The ice on the leaves on the Japanese maple this morning
    – Our Christmas tree is up — AND has lights and ornaments on it
    – Lavender-scented neck wraps

    • Stacey says...

      I love this idea!

  62. Meg says...

    1. The woman who found my driver’s license on the sidewalk and tracked me down to let me know it was on its way back to me. When I offered to pay her, she told me to pay it forward through an act of kindness for someone else in need (reminded me of the story “today you, tomorrow me”).
    2. The small business owner who added a nice italian cake to my order free of charge out of gratitude when I told him I purchased all my holiday gifts locally.
    3. The twinkling Christmas tree and garland in my living room that help me relax after a long day of work.
    4. The UPS guy who tirelessly delivers packages in this bustling city with a huge smile on his face.
    5. The friends and family from near and far that have helped me “escape” my little apartment through conversation and laughter over the last year.

  63. Dee says...

    1) Taking a walk on the Brooklyn Promenade every night without my phone. The fresh air and phone-free times always makes my mental status feel way better.
    2) My new hobby, needlepoint, and making everyone homemade gifts this year.
    3) Reading out loud over the phone with my best friend a few times a week. Right now we’re doing “The Hobbit.”
    4) Listening to Jim Dale version of “Harry Potter” audiobooks …. just finished the last one and need new comforting audiobook material!
    5) How amazing it feels to stretch and do yoga

    • E says...

      Jim Dale is the best audiobook reader! He’s read a few others – I recommend The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.

    • Callahan says...

      The Jim Dale version of Harry Potter is the best! This one is also on my list. :) I’m a repeat listener quite often, his voice is so soothing and perfect for chores.

    • ellie says...

      I recommend “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall – incredibly well told tale even if you’re not a runner.

  64. Robin says...

    – Bosses told me I’m doing a great job.
    – I mastered making lemon meringue pies.
    – Husband singing regular sentences to the tune of Christmas carols
    – Park and Recreation (tv show)
    – My grumpy old cat leaping out from corners and attacking my legs.

  65. Deana says...

    1. Correspondence from relatives overseas.
    2. Texas weather in fall with cloudless blue skies.
    3. Parks within walking distance.
    4. Trump-Pence signs gone.
    5. My neighbor’s twin corgis who wear goggles and bandanas on their walks!

    • E says...

      yes to the trump-pence signs being gone!

  66. jill says...

    1. golden retrievers! (especially puppies)
    2. smooching on and snuggling my sleeping kids/teenagers before i go to bed at night and the house is silent.
    3. bistro lights over any patio
    4. discovering new growth on plants
    5. remembering sweet moments and conversations i shared with my mom throughout the years….the anniversary of her death is next week.

    • Julianna says...

      1. Flannel sheets keeping my toes toasty
      2. My dog jumping up onto my bed in the middle of the night when he gets cold
      3. The solitude of my morning coffee when it seems the world is still asleep
      4. Having my family nearby during this chaotic time.
      5. The amount of time I’ve had to cook and bake/ try out new recipes to share with loved ones

  67. 1. Getting my first dose of the Covid-19 VACCINATION!! I’m a labor & delivery nurse at UCLA, and this past year has been a whirlwind of emotions – the fear and anxiety from this pandemic mixed with the joy and elation of helping mothers bring life into this world. For the first time in a long time, I feel like I can finally take a breath and see the light. A sigh of relief, if there ever was one.

    2. Running in the brisk morning, clearing my mind for the day ahead.

    3. The feeling of your hands warming when you wrap them around a mug of tea.

    4. The weight of a down comforter as we ease into bed.

    5. Candlelight at dinner, to commemorate another day alive and in love.

    • LT says...

      WOOHOO! Another vaccine comment. I don’t think I can take the joy of it, and that it means this crappiness has an end in sight!! 😃

    • Jessica Mill says...

      Erica! Thanks for all the work you do!

  68. – my 7 yr old has a Feelings Doctor AKA therapist, and I think she saved us all over zoom this week
    – lights: trees, menorahs, on houses — i’ll take it all
    – coffee / wine
    – this whole season of the bachelorette. tayshia is so honest and refreshing!
    – the feeling of waking up under cozy, warm covers

  69. Megan says...

    1. The Christmas cards that I am sending out, featuring my adorable baby.
    2. That I sleep trained said baby this week–she is doing amazing at taking long naps and sleeping through the night and omg I have my life back.
    3. The cookie-press Christmas cookies that my mom shipped across the country.
    4. The Bonne Maman advent calendar that is giving me just as much joy as I expected it would when I bought it in October.
    5. Finally watching Normal People and LOVING it. Couldn’t get into the book (I know, I know) but oh man is the TV series good.

  70. Amanda G says...

    Christmas tree lights, a busy toddler in bed for the night(where after the fact, I miss him so much), my husband taking care of the errands tonight, the light snow we got yesterday, tomorrow is FRIDAY!

  71. Katie says...

    – seeing a dog on a walk with a toy in its mouth
    – the unexpected bonus my school gave all employees this year
    – my husband’s jokes
    – room temperature brie
    – clean sheets

    • Dana Wilson says...

      Katie I love your list!

  72. Clare says...

    During tough times, I ask my husband to “tell me something good.”

    1. Fresh snow!
    2. Cat snuggles
    3. Coffee + oat milk
    4. Bright red tablecloth from my faraway parents
    5. My husband’s eyelashes

    • Em says...

      I’m on your same wavelength — love this :-)

  73. Jen says...

    1. Unexpected sexy dreams.
    2. Being the official Christmas cookie baker in the house and getting first tastes and licking all the batter/chocolate bowls.
    3. Watching my dog go nuts playing in the snow.
    4. Finding new ways to connect with old friends during this crazy time.
    5. Getting Christmas cards in the mailbox everyday.

  74. Julee says...

    1. The sound of my four children playing, running and yelling all together after dinner
    2. Christmas lights-on trees, homes, etc
    3. the smell of my children’s hair
    4. Drinking wine and chatting with my husband after our tribe is in bed
    5. My first cup of coffee in the morning

  75. donna says...

    1. today is the first day I’ve felt like myself again after a rough first trimester of pregnancy nausea and vomitting. I had energy to plan a Christmas menu!
    2. the refreshing quality of walks in the cold, crisp air.
    3. my mom made a beautiful boquet of flowers and berries and leaves from our yard and i’m loving having it on my dresser!
    4. my toddler’s full-face smiles; they make my life.
    5. looking forward to Christmas morning cinnamon rolls we get to enjoy and drop off at friends and neighbors :)

  76. K says...

    1. My husband’s work paying for 2 of the next 3 weeks of shelter-in-place as a one time bonus (ever little bit helps).
    2. Bonding with my cat over the past 9-10 months of working from home (we were pretty much already bonded, but the intensity of this new bonded level is wonderful).
    3. My new guitar. My husband bought me a child’s guitar for my birthday (small hands!) — I’ve only had it a week, but it’s giving me such a fun project to focus on.
    4. The rain last night.
    5. The lemon trees in the front of our rental .

  77. Sequoya Snow says...

    – surprise free cake at work
    – mail (anything other than bills/flyers)
    – a simple kiss on the forehead by husband
    – Sasha (puppy) sneeze
    – first 5mins out of the shower

    • Jane says...

      YES to surprise free cake at work! Honestly, free food in any form is wonderful :)

  78. Monica says...

    This is an important practice :)

    1. Kid-made popsicle stick tree ornaments
    2. Sleeping baby nose whistling
    3. A walk around the block so kid energy is not inside the house for ten minutes
    4. Seaweed baths
    5. Kids singing from what has turned into “the Lego room”
    6. My new “dumb phone is on its way to me

  79. Tracey says...

    1. I finally checked my ableism (I’m suffering chronic illness) and hired a cleaner – they are lovely and amazing and I feel so much happier with this investment over than any other and know fully what a luxury this is too
    2. Our Neighbours had a block party last night (we are covid 0 for a long time so aren’t restricted). Watching kids freely ride the hill on scooters knowing the council had closed the street for us was magic – again, so lucky on so many accounts

    I used to be funny about “luck” I wanted to make it clear I work hard, and I do. But not any harder than those who don’t have the same good fortune and privelege that I do so I know to appreciate it. It’s luck. And I’m grateful.

    • Julee says...

      You know I think this all the time- about luck.
      I’m not “that special” or “that clever”- I’m just lucky too. It humbles me.
      Feel ya sister!

  80. Autumn says...

    1) holding hands with my husband as we fall asleep
    2) the smell of cardamom in my morning tea
    3) fresh flowers in a mason jar
    4) the feeling of getting lost in a good book
    5) exchanging a smile with a stranger as we pass each other in the street

  81. Cynthia says...

    1. Walking around my neighborhood and looking at the Christmas decorations.
    2. My awesome husband and awesome adult daughters.
    3. My adorable adopted chihuahua mix.
    4. My good health.
    5. My cozy home.
    My list could go on.

  82. LP says...

    1. going for a run around dusk and watching the sky turn brilliant shades of pastel
    2. a just ripe avocado
    3. watching otter antics on the Monterey Aquarium otter cam
    4. bright colored cozy wool socks
    5. discovering Paul Hollywood’s food/travel show, City Bakes, on Youtube!

    • Megan says...

      LOVE these!!

  83. Katie says...

    1. My two tiny Christmas trees, and especially the tree skirt I quilted as a preteen and am now using as an adult

    2. My new art studio space, converted from the second bedroom a roommate moved out of recently

    3. The totchos I will be making and eating later

    4. Seeing snow falling from my window

    5. The hot water bottle I am cuddled up with right now

  84. Bea says...

    1. Getting in bed, fully-clothed, under the covers in the middle of the day to watch something I’ve already seen before.
    2. When the dishwasher has more than enough room for this meal’s dishes AND the next.
    3. Hot hot coffee.
    4. When your hair magically still looks good halfway through the day despite life happening/humidity
    5. Learning Scottish Gaelic on Duolingo because why the hell not; it’s challenging, fun, easy, and satisfying all a the same time. Hopefully it will come in handy some day in some way (here’s looking at you, Richard Madden/Sam Heughan/James McAvoy)

    • Kat v says...

      This comment is like a teaser to a book I wish I could read about my new favorite person, Bea. I so relate to all of these comments, and the specificity makes me feel less awkwardly unique.
      – Kat, who absolutely loves midday bed breaks to rewatch the Great British or Canadian Bake-Off.

    • Paige says...

      I feel like we could be best friends, Bea. I love your list! Absolutely totally agree with the first 4 and now feel like I should do #5!

    • Allyson says...

      We should be friends.

  85. Kate says...

    After I read about this I started playing the 5 Nice Things game with my sister. It has similar effects to a gratitude list but it’s more open-ended. It was nice to think back over my day and just brought me back to the little moments. It actually helped me to realize I find cooking very calming and it’s a form of self-care. I would often tell my sister one nice thing was, for example, stirring risotto on the stove while sipping red wine and listening to lo-fi. It was lovely in the moment, and just as lovely to recall! And as someone who was recently brutally dumped, it helped me to recognize I was creating a nice life for myself, by myself. If you’ll excuse me, I need to call my sister.

    • Sage says...

      The world is just better with a sister. :)

  86. Lauren says...

    1) the box of Meyer lemons that arrived here still smelling like the trees in my mom’s backyard, 2800 miles away
    2) when the cat keels over while I’m folding the laundry and lets me layer hot socks on his back like lasagna noodles
    3) salty-ass black licorice
    4) delirious dancing in last night’s snow
    5) the preposterously fat squirrels in the park across the street, what absolute units

  87. Lisa says...

    1) very nice people in the looooooong at the post office

    2) new snow at lake Tahoe

    3) my coworker who volunteered to do winter maintenance on a habitat restoration site

    4) we got three dozen fresh cookies at work today from a supporter

    5) my coat!

    • Julee says...

      I miss me some Lake Tahoe! We usually spend the holidays there with my family.
      Enjoy it for me. Ski it up. Sit around the fire at the base of Heavenly for me.

  88. Allie N. says...

    1. Good hair day with my new bangs, even when no one is around to witness
    2. puppy breath
    3. Getting bundled up for nighttime walks around town
    4. Spotify 2020 most played playlist – hell yeah, Jamiriquoi!
    5. eating a bag of black licorice in one sitting, guilt-free.

  89. AJ says...

    1. A bright crisp walk to the post office today
    2. Reading a bedtime story on the phone to my mum who’s in hospital
    3. Chocolate arriving in the post
    4. The cat sniffing around during kitchen gym sesh
    5. Two skinny dogs in neon and silver dog onesies in the park

  90. Grace Yay says...

    My mom calls this “getting Sound of Musicky.” Cue favorite things!

    -The new episodes banner that comes up on Netflix. Even better when you forgot your fave show was coming out with a new season.
    -the smell of my dog
    -my sister’s dimples
    -garlicky mashed potatoes
    -when someone else cancels a zoom meeting so you don’t have to feel guilty about bailing

  91. Alison says...

    – My morning cup of Earl Grey tea with oat milk (I look forward to it the night before!)
    – Waking up in the night to the sound of rain
    – I asked my 3-year-old daughter today who her best friend is and she immediately said, “Mommy!”
    – Going for a run in the cold followed by a hot epsom salt bath
    – Eating dark chocolate in pajamas and watching a show when the kids are asleep

  92. 1. When I wake up to my cat snuggled into me, she only does this in winter.

    2. The Great British Baking Show (I’m also late to the party!) I love following the contestants on insta after I watch and finding out what they are up to now!

    3. Seeing the sunset so much this year after 10 years of working afternoon/nights.

    4. Trader Joe’s Almond Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies. The best gluten-free cookie out there right now.

    5. Living at home and waking up to the coffee already made.

  93. Samantha says...

    – I love having a Christmas tree in the house. Every time I look at it in its sparkly goodness, I smile.
    – I’ve been writing real letters to friends the last few months and it’s so fun! I just got some personalized stationary and I adore it.
    – Here in San Diego, we’re enjoying nice cool weather after a blazing hot summer. Winter can’t be long enough in my book at this rate.
    -I got the cookbook, “Snacking Cakes.” I’ve made two recipes and both were winners. I can’t wait to make my next one!
    -We’ve been drinking something bubbly almost every night, prosecco, cava, whatever, to make the holidays feel a little special. My husband came home the other day with a pair of gorgeous champagne glasses from a tiny store in our neighborhood and it made me so happy–the glasses, supporting a small business, and that he just did it on a whim for us and our new little ritual.

  94. Kristen says...

    1. I restarted therapy today and felt heard for the first time in a long time
    2. In the evening my partner plays with our son in between dinner & bed, and watching their “boys time” – complete with monkey noises & huge baby belly laughs makes me so happy
    I could explode
    3. My company’s parenthood ERG makes being a first time working mom feel so much less daunting
    4. I made my mom’s famous thumbprint cookies over the weekend and they tasted like childhood
    5. My KitchenAide cold brew maker + Yeti tumbler lets me drink cold coffee without having cold hands

    • Mimi says...

      I love this. And I love my Yeti tumbler, too! It was a gift I never would have thought about purchasing but it’s now my go-to; smoothies without having cold hands, hot coffee that stays hot (without being in a less than aesthetically pleasing to-go mug), and (not to be too ‘Grace’ from Frankie & Grace) but sometimes having a not-so-obvious glass of wine in the middle of the afternoon – because it’s also my water cup. Next year, everyone on my list is getting a Yeti tumbler!

  95. Claire says...

    1. My brother and I have become much closer in the past year (it’s easier now that we’re in our 20s!). I’m really hopeful that we’ll become true friends in the next few years.

    2. I love my housemates (even after six months of living together through a pandemic).

    3. My therapist has supported me in creating firmer boundaries for my work and relationships and it’s really working. I feel confident asking for what I want and need from others.

    4. Through some trial and error and creation of a Vivino account, I can now go to the white wine section and know exactly which bottle I’ll like. I love something dry and crisp like a Sauvignon Blanc and have discovered that some of my favorites include Roero Arneis, Verdicchio, Vermentino, and Falanghina. Go figure!

    5. After dedicating all of my time and energy into school and, recently, work, I am learning to put that same kind of determination into myself (and the people and things that make me happy). Long walks talking on the phone with friends, shamelessly watching Grey’s Anatomy or the Bachelorette, baking, paint by number(!), creating origami lanterns… I’m looking forward to finding more things that make me happy in the coming year.

    *Bonus #6* When the world finally opens back up, I have my TEFL certificate and will be ready to teach English in Rome. I really hope that can happen in 2021.

  96. Amanda says...

    1. Chocolate babka
    2. Picking my daughter up from school and our subsequent stroll home.
    3. Christmas lights
    4. That first cup of coffee in the morning.
    5. Group chats with close friends who feel otherwise far away right now.

    • Jana says...

      Mine would be exactly the same (sub son for daughter)!

  97. Maclean Nash says...

    1) Facetimes with my sisters! No one can make me laugh as hard as those two!
    2) Sunny, crisp winter days.
    3) The hand pies that I baked turned out looking *exactly* like the recipe photo and they taste incredible!
    4) Laughing every day with my partner! Though we have both been WFH since March in our 600sqft apartment, we are share a laugh at least once a day!
    5) Evening walks and seeing neighbours lit up trees!

  98. Heather says...

    This actually reminds me of the podcast Wonderful – it’s a husband and wife and they just talk about things or concepts they enjoy. Its super pleasant and a good reminder to be in awe and get enjoyment out of small things. Highly recommend it if you need a distraction and some positivity!

    • Heather says...

      Following up with my own:

      1) Cleaning up after the magical messes my girls make – I’ve always liked putting everything in its place, its relaxing, but its also weirdly a joy when its the evidence of their active imaginations
      2) The way my 5 year old bites her bottom lip when she pets our dog or loves on her sister
      3) My husband who likes tweets, including ones about Taylor Swift, that may be of interest to me or make me laugh
      4) My family text chain – it was infrequently used during covid, but now its busy all day long. I feel so much more in tune with my brother than before and I’m thankful for this window into his life.
      5) And perhaps most importantly: Whole Foods Chocolate Candy Cane Cookies – its the best time of year!

  99. Jennifer Harrell says...

    1. tomorrow is the last day of school in 2020
    2. velvet joggers
    3. mail from someone you miss
    4. oatmeal and peanut butter
    5. dog’s joy when you walk into the room, even though you’ve been home together forever

    • Samantha says...

      3 and 5!!! :)

    • Mimi says...

      #5..yes! It’s so true..and incredibly sweet and I suddenly love my dog even more!

  100. Jax says...

    – my kid in Xmas-y red plaid pjs and a beanie
    – chocolate panettone Manresa Bread — a nice early Xmas present from a good friend
    – behind the curve, but enjoying Schitt’s Creek Season 3 (what took me so long?)
    – decorating our Xmas tree (we usually get it later, so it stays fresh through NY’s) and glad that 98% of my Xmas shopping is done
    – even though I’ll miss having family, not missing the stress of preparing for a holiday dinner and hosting. Will be enjoying a long staycation break!

  101. Megan says...

    1) when my 1.5-year-old nephew wraps his chubby little arms around my neck! I live for his hugs.
    2) when it’s snowing outside
    3) when my patients are nice and kind even though they are going through so much
    4) running into people I know in the hospital (because we’re in full lockdown again and I can’t organize hanging out with people anymore but I can still go to work!)
    5) waking up really early to go backcountry skiing and seeing the sunrise over the mountains
    6) random weekday naps (rare!)

    That was six but I couldn’t stop myself. I got to go home early and had a random nap today and it really made the cut!

  102. Mouse says...

    –finishing the online teaching of fall term TODAY. Yay!!
    –snowy woods
    –potato, kale and linguica sausage soup
    –warm kitty by the woodstove
    –my husband’s never-ending enjoyment of the food I cook for him.

  103. Eliza says...

    1. I finished my last exam of the semester a few hours ago!
    2) I missed an episode of Grey’s Anatomy from last week and had the good fortune to watch it this afternoon before it expires!
    3) my husband brought me home a sandwich from a local sandwich shop to celebrate end of semester ❤️
    4) Among us – I don’t love video games but my kids were so excited to teach me how to play it and I actually had fun.
    5) Wellbutrin – I’ve only been on it for less than two weeks but I have high hopes it’s going to help me with a lonnnng season (years) of dysthymia that’s been worse recently for the same reason as so many other people having a hard time right now.

    Thank you for reminding me.

  104. Ashley says...

    1. Purpley baby eyelids
    2. My 4 Year old’s commitment to footie pajamas
    3. Date nights with my husband.
    4. My prayer group women
    5. Salty butter and fresh bread

  105. Kristen says...

    1. The message my 6 year old asked me to write on his teacher’s holiday card: “It will be a long break and I will miss you. Maybe we can have a Zoom happy hour.”
    2. Watching NOVA with my 8 year old, and the general mind-blowing-ness of the universe and the humans who study it.
    3. Using laundry folding or pomegranate deseeding as an excuse to watch The Crown after everyone else is asleep.
    4. Cutting out Christmas cookies.
    5. Only 4 more days until the days start getting longer!

    • Claire says...

      #1 is the sweetest thing ever. (I’m a teacher and although I crave the break, I start to miss the kids too!)

    • Grace Yay says...

      Is “zoom happy hour” THE most used phrase of 2020? It’s pretty damn cute that your 6 year old has picked it up.

    • AJ says...

      Oh your six-year-old’s message…. that is so sweet :)

    • Jill says...

      #1 is so dear to this teacher’s heart and it’s really wonderful it made your list.

  106. Emily says...

    – our daughter reciting “The Wonderful Things You Will Be” as I write this
    – blueberry bread in the oven
    – cold oh-so-kissable cheeks
    – feeling the support of family and friends after making a big decision
    – knowing that love knows no distance.

  107. Rachael says...

    1. My dog & how much she loves to snuggle
    2. The glow of my Christmas tree lights
    3. A cup of hot chocolate on a snowy day
    4. I finally finished A Promised Land by Obama! It was good, but sooo long.
    5. A warm shower after getting cold & wet shoveling snow

  108. LLH says...

    I play this game with my husband alllll the time. It’s kinda the only way I feel like I can get through this mad year. It could be anything at all big or small but small reminders of things to appreciate make a huge difference! <3

    – unexpected face time calls from friends instead of texts.

    – waking up to a sleeping cat next to you in the morning.

    – sending video diaries to my BFF every day checking in, catching up and talking about our therapy sessions

    – homemade pizza

    – crocs and socks! dorky but so great.

  109. SarahN says...

    I’ve introduced this with my ‘step’ kids – well, I’m more realistic lol: one good thing from the day, one not so good thing, one thing they’re looking forward to… It’s a great way to draw them out (5 & 7.5) and away from incessent iPad shows during meals which dramatically slows their eating!!

    1. air conditioning (it’s already 30C before 9am in Sydney)
    2. Southern Sydney (means the Northern Beaches outbreak is far from my orbit)
    3. chilled water
    4. a work car
    5. Money to buy meals

  110. Gwen says...

    1. The library where I work just had our annual staff charity auction over Zoom. It is always fun to see my colleagues try to outbid each other and see who gets to take home this year’s batch of jello shots. I’m glad it happened this year, even at a distance.

    2. My husband has been away for work since Monday, and he is coming home this evening.

    3. Even though I am not traveling for the holidays this year, I have an 11-day break from work coming up, and I’m really excited.

    4. I just started playing the New York Times Spelling Bee, and I like that it gives me something to do when I need a break that isn’t scrolling social media.

    5. My dog, who is a pandemic pet, is lying on the couch snoring, and it is super cute.

  111. Katie says...

    1. Our Christmas tree.
    2. A daily piece of Belgian chocolate from my advent calendar.
    3. Pictures of my nieces and nephews.
    4. A surprise text from a friend.
    5. My husband. He drives me crazy some days, but he’s definitely a nice thing.

  112. elaine says...

    1. Grocery shopping for my parents [and myself]: my parents are homebound so I do their weekly shopping and drop it off. I love reading their grocery list and asking what they’re cooking for the week.

    2. BTS: I’ve never been so invested in the well being of a boy band. I love all their music content, and their latest album BE has been such a stress reliever during these trying times. Also they are just Good Boys.

    3. Furniture rearranging: I love that a-ha moment when I finally have all the pieces in a room arranges in such a way that pulls it together. I never used to be home a lot and now that I am, it really feels like one.

    4. Reading cookbooks [not even cooking a recipe just reading one and going ‘oh that looks delicious…’ hahaha]

    5. 4PM tea time

    • Kiera says...

      OMG, #2! I love BTS, especially their new album BE. I agree that their music is so calming, and and I really appreciate that every song has a special meaning behind it. So glad to meet a fellow ARMY.
      (and yes, they are very Good Boys)

    • briana says...

      I am an art director and worked on the music video for ‘ON.’ BTS and their team truly are such kind and grateful (and talented!) people.

    • Elaine says...

      Wow, I wasn’t expecting any replies to this….Hello fellow Army Kiera! How lucky are we to have BTS during the pandemic!?

      Briana, oh my gosh, thank you so much for sharing your experience with BTS and their team! I love the ON mv–it’s such a huge departure from their previous work, and that’s so awesome that you art directed it!

  113. Taylor says...

    1) seeing Christmas lights while walking the dog
    2) a glass of wine after work
    3) a 28 degree bonfire + drinks + pizza + blankets + friends
    4) reading a book about Italy and watching Under the Tuscan Sun as a way to “travel” without going anywhere
    5) cross country virtual Secret Santa

  114. Jessica says...

    1. The way my 18-month-old grabs my face with his little hands for a kiss.
    2. Proyecto Diaz Coffee.
    3. Christmas decorations
    4. Vaccines being approved!
    5. Smiles and waves from strangers.

  115. Haylea says...

    1. A hot shower on a cold day where the whole experience is leisurely and afterwards I put on tons of lotion and get in bed to preserve my warmth.
    2. 3/4 semesters of my Masters of Social Work degree completed with 4.0 grades every time when I never was such an excellent student. Shows that if you’re looking, the right path finds you.
    3. Stress baking actually does the trick sometimes.
    4. When you text your friend how they are feeling and they answer honestly and it’s the same way you have been feeling – “like a raw little onion, very IN my emotions.” And you get to validate that for each other.
    4. When the kiddos I do therapy with on zoom tell me they feel proud of themselves.
    5. When my baby kicks – it happens all day and night but it’s just as emotional and reassuring every time.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Love these. Xo

    • Claire says...

      Such a great list! Congrats on grad school, your baby, awesome friends, and your clearly amazing therapy sessions for your kiddos!

  116. RB says...

    Specifically for today:
    1- Snow day for both me & son (also decided ahead of time that whether school called it or not- it would be a day if sledding, hot chocolate & Xmas movies)
    2- fuzzy , warm slippers & warm winter hats (I’m known to wear them indoors)
    3- snuggling
    4- arroz caldo on a cold day (making it now, Filipino version of chicken soup)
    5- dark chocolate ( my husband has supplying me with really good dark chocolate through these tough times)

  117. Gill F says...

    1) two feet of snow dumped on my city meant I got to work from home with my kitties
    2) extra meds are finally sorta helping me feel more human after a really rough chronic illness flare
    3) got the best video from my sister of my three year old nephew dancing (they live across the country and I miss them so much but videos help)
    4) I can’t help shovel right now so to compensate I made my family a big pot of vegan chili for dinner
    5) finished knitting my first hat!

  118. Jill says...

    —my children playing Christmas carols on the piano and trumpet
    —everything about my cockapoo
    —my virtual student writing a message to me “I wish I could hug you”
    —the quiet of my house when everyone else is in bed
    — finding a perfect gift for a friend and anticipating their laughter at opening.

  119. Aislinn says...

    1. My puppy Hagrid had surgery yesterday to fix his cherry eyes, and he came out groggy and with a cone on his head, but very much himself. His “go with the flow” attitude made me feel like I should take a page out of the puppy handbook and try to be happy with whatever life throws at me.
    2. Twinkle lights. When “more is more” really feels right.
    3. Christmas movies with my mom. We can’t watch together in person, but we’ve been watching “together” virtually—one of our favorite hacks for long-distance friendship.
    4. The first sip of hot coffee in the morning.
    5. Fresh snow.

    • E says...

      One of our cats is named Hagrid! The other one is Arabella Figg :)

  120. Allie says...

    1. Watermelon jelly belly jellybeans
    2. Climbing back into bed on a cold morning, with coffee, to read the paper for a few minutes before the kids wake up
    3. Browsing Air BNB for the perfect beach house for when it’s finally safe to travel again
    4. Talking about parenthood with my co-workers
    5. New issue of Bon Appetit in the mail

  121. — sprinkled vanilla extract on coffee beans and wondered why I’d never thought of it before
    –drove around with my daughter to ooh and ahhh over holiday lights
    –a wreath on my door means it smells like pine whenever I come home
    –no one complained about my substandard dinner
    –the cable is out from the storm so no nightly news is good nightly news

  122. Tara says...

    1. When someone gives me a cookie
    2. Fancy sweatpants over nice wool thermals
    3. Taking off my mask (safely)
    4. Watching my toddler draw
    5. A child saying please without prompting
    Yah, niiice.

  123. Holly says...

    — My morning pep talk to my plants whilst drinking coffee
    — The hiss & crackle of freshly baked bread coming out of the oven
    — Checking off the first thing on my daily to-do list
    — A big, yawn-y, awkward full-body stretch
    — Joe Biden nominating Deb Haaland to lead the Interior (which would make her the first Native American Cabinet secretary!)

  124. Ally says...

    1. A rescheduled trip to Japan with my husband and our one year old that I’m *hoping* will finally happen next September, thanks to the vaccines!
    2. Roast chicken
    3. Healthy, happy family, with another baby on the way (my cousin! not me. I’m JUST starting to sleep again!)
    4. A well-received research paper I presented at a conference yesterday
    5. A humble but cozy, clean apartment

  125. Becca says...

    1. The bowl of lucky charms I ate yesterday.
    2. My new husband who puts a glass of ice water on my nightstand every night.
    3. The cold rain (i don’t like it, but I’m trying to change my PNW perspective).
    4. My dad is healthy and recovering from his prostate cancer surgery.
    5. Crying at almost every show I watch, but feeling cool about it.

    • Claire says...

      Such a lovely list! Your husband sounds awesome and I’m glad your dad is doing ok post-surgery (my dad had prostate cancer a few years ago and is fortunately doing well). xo from a fellow PNW-er who loves rain haha

  126. Ro says...

    1) when a friend or dog is excited to see you
    2) the smell of snow
    3) everything bagels with cream cheese
    4) the moment you sink into bed
    5) buying a new lip balm

  127. – Thoughtful mail
    – My husband making me tea before I get up
    – Baby Yoda
    – When my pet bird sits on my shoulder for hours
    – Christmas stollen

  128. Jen says...

    1) really good coffee from my aeropress.
    2) watching my oversized puppy lose her mind in a pile of leaves outside our house.
    3) homemade beeswax candles (I’ve been making them in thrifted teacups with a blend of beeswax, coconut oil, and essential oils… they’re high quality and a fun quarantine activity).
    4) my book club of college friends who have met every two weeks on zoom since April – I haven’t felt closer to them since we all lived in the same house senior year.
    5) my houseplants are thriving in 2020! My pothos has taken over the walls and my snake plant is waist high. Good for them.

  129. Shoshana says...

    -The way my often grumpy five year old insists on pulling my face mask down for a real smooch when I drop him off at preschool.
    -My husband
    -CupofJo (reader since 2009)
    -My one night reservation at a yurt(!) on AirBnB in the County where I live for the holiday break.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Love these! A yurt! And thank you xoxo

  130. lindsay says...

    1. movie popcorn
    2. smell of pine trees mixed with ocean air
    3. handmade quilts
    4. tea with chocolate
    5. swimming laps

  131. Denise says...

    1. Christmas tree lights in the morning like a secret celebration before rushing off to work.
    2. Rosemary Sourdough toast w butter & hot tea
    3. My cat’s sweet chit chat & stretching little kitty toes
    4. Freshly laundered sheets
    5. Space exploration! I’m reading Endurance: A Year in Space, A Lifetime of Discovery by Scott Kelley & finding it so fascinating. I should’ve been an astronaut.

    • Mims says...

      Denise, If you like that book, check out this one: ENDURANCE: SHACKLETON’S INCREDIBLE VOYAGE
      Ernest Shackleton is my husband’s biggest hero and his family’s motto is “Fortitudine Vincimus—”by endurance we conquer”. That has become a frequent refrain to get us through these past months….. Plus a dash, “accentuate the positive!” like five nice things.

      I know polar exploration is the epitome of white man’s manifest destiny, but you got to admire his commitment to never giving up and only loosing three crew members over three years despite incredible odds.

  132. Steph says...

    1. Chicken soup for lunch
    2. Cookie season
    3. Your first bath after cleaning the tub
    4. When husband takes the trash out w/out a reminder
    5. The smell of Burt’s Bees Baby shampoo wafting up from my son’s head

  133. Megan McC says...

    -Putting my head on my boyfriend’s shoulder
    -The first sip of coffee
    -My cat head butting me
    -Getting real snail mail, especially Christmas cards
    -Using my scalp scrubber in the shower

  134. Laura says...

    1. Pressing my cheek against my daughter’s cheek.
    2. Mango sorbet (even in winter!)
    3. The roaring of a waterfall.
    4. Reading a funny book (I’m currently reading Just Like You by Nick Hornby)
    5. The sense of calm and relaxation I feel after a yoga practice

  135. Annie says...

    1. epsom salt baths
    2. podcasts
    3. cold buster tea from Starbucks
    4. hikes in the desert
    5. nostalgic Christmas movies

  136. Sarah A. says...

    – Cats that get along and cuddle together as it gets colder out
    – Pickles straight from the jar in the fridge
    – Throw blankets everywhere
    – A good time travel story
    – Having all presents delivered and wrapped (not yet, but ready for that!)

  137. Maryn says...

    1) The Keap sampler candles that another CoJ reader so generously arranged for me to have (Wood Cabin is my favorite so far)
    2) I’m experimenting with the curly girl method and I’m far from perfecting it, but today was a decent wash day! Rejoice!
    3) I’m finally allowing myself to figure out what I REALLY want in life and now I’m applying for the master’s program I’ve had my eye on for the past year
    4) The Crown Season 4 is sad, but somehow comforting?
    5) I’m basic, but… Taylor Swift’s Evermore is all I’m listening to this week and I love it!

    • Ruffner Mountain says...

      Same on Taylor Swift!

    • Jackie says...

      I’m basic too! I said the same thing when I decided to watch that!

  138. Rachel Z says...

    LOVE this idea!
    1. Sunshine
    2. Water (especially a flowing river or a crystal clear lake)
    3. My neighbor’s adorable Golden Doodle
    4. Green tea in the morning
    5. Massages :)

    • Lucy W says...

      These days I feel like I live for my morning matcha!! Definitely one of my five things too ☕️

  139. Jessica Valadez says...

    1. pugs
    2. cuddling up under a freshly washed warm blanket
    3. the anticipation of starting a new show
    4. Aminatou Sow’s curated series of tiktok videos on Instagram
    5. Grocery shopping for items to make a new recipe.

    • Tyler says...

      Oh my god I look forward to Aminatou’s tiktok drop all week. Have you been reading her newsletter?? It’s excellent.

  140. Caitlin says...

    1. i slept so well last night. i love sleeping well!
    2. how excited my toddler gets every time we plug in the christmas tree
    3. managing my anxiety pretty well these days
    4. ‘are you the one’ on netflix is fantastic trash
    5. every single piece of news about the vaccine. i literally cannot wait to get it. i’d take in in my eyeball if i had to.

    • Susan says...

      I laughed at your eyeballs comment. I feel exactly the same way!

    • Julie says...

      Hahaha! “I’d take it in my eyeball” …me too!!

    • Eliza says...

      Ahhhh your eyeball! I love this and the eyeball thought also gives me the shivers. A good accomplishment!

  141. sarah says...

    1. Reading Mary Poppins with my son
    2. Lights on our christmas tree
    3. Tomorrow is the last day of virtual school for the year! This year we all get a tremendous break.
    4. Cozy blankets
    5. A bunch of Christmas cards came in the mail today!

    Love this! We will take this up as a dinner activity

  142. Megan Johnson says...

    1. Spying a glimpse of someone’s lit Christmas tree through their window
    2. When my husband gets up in the night to go to the bathroom and I groan, “What time is it?” and he says, “2:30,” and I realize I get to sleep for several more hours
    3. Sourdough toast, buttered, with a little bit of Marmite
    4. Squirrels
    5. Noel Fielding

    • Abbey says...

      Hi. We are the same. Love this.

    • hali says...

      This list speaks to me!
      Except I’m the one getting up to pee!

      Just googled: Marmite is a green light for pregnancy! I’ll be picking it up along with fancy butter and fancy sour dough for christmas-week breakfasts. Haven’t had it in ages! I hope I can find it easily! We always bring it home from england but surely you can get it in the states!!

      Squirrels man, they’re hilarious! Have you ever watched squirrel’s chase each other up palm trees? A true 2020 silver lining is simply noticing quirky squirrel behavior while walking. All we ever do is go on walks anymore. It’s great.

      And NOEL. I have the biggest, weirdest crush him!

      Your list made my list twice as long. Thank you!

    • Maryn says...

      Another note on squirrels: a few weeks ago my husband and I spotted an albino squirrel while on a walk on the National Mall in DC! I was telling a friend about it later and she Googled the chances of seeing an albino squirrel… Apparently it’s 1 in 100,000!

  143. Beth says...

    1. A day of sharp, bright sunshine in winter, with long shadows
    2. Something sweet waiting for me in my fridge
    3. Receiving an unexpected birthday card 6 months late, containing a heartfelt message
    4. My wife making me a hot water bottle when I needed one, without asking
    5. The smell of a real Christmas tree

  144. Julie says...

    1. Gilmore Girls – I never get tired of it, even after seeing the episodes SO many times.
    2. Scented candles – especially during the holidays.
    3. British Bake Off – just makes me happy, always. Simple and sweet!
    4. Glass of white wine – especially after a long day of being a new mom. I look forward to it so much!
    5. Crisp cool mornings – to run in with my favorite music playing in my ears.

    • Emily says...

      Yes to all of this- I think you might be by soul sister? :). And I also have a new baby who has loyally binge watched Gilmore girls with me during maternity leave. Never gets old!

    • Bethan says...

      1. Maps
      2. Trips
      3. Surprises
      4. A fancy candle, lit with matches not a lighter
      5. Watching my son’s rabbits frolicking in their pen outside my window

    • Julie says...

      Hi Emily! Seriously, me too! I just finished my maternity leave last week and I hate to admit that I had it on in the background nearly every day. Whenever he hears, ” Where you lead, I will follow… ” he looks up at the tv!

    • Amanda says...

      My grandma died last month after contracting COVID, and of course the grief was complicated by the fact that we couldn’t have the service we would have wanted to yet. We did a family-only graveside service (all outside and with masks on… honestly so weird) and afterward my sisters and I laughed about how we had all turned to GG S1:E1 for comfort :)

    • Bethan M says...

      1. Having a new appreciation for my voice. I have a “posh” British accent with a slight lisp and have always hated hearing recordings of my voice, but somehow have started appreciating my voice more over this past year.
      2. Crisp sunny winter mornings
      3. Gavin and Stacey (a classic British sitcom)
      4. Whenever there is a new episode of my favourite podcast – Dear Hank and John (DFTBA)
      5. Eating steamed broccoli with a little sprinkling of salt. The. Best.

  145. Jessica says...

    – pudgy toddler hands
    – perfectly piled snow
    – steam from a bath
    – lipstick smudges on a wine glass
    -mittens drying by the fire

  146. Rebecca says...

    1. Rosie (my dog)
    2. Tension Tamer tea
    3. Dry socks
    4. Holiday lights and menorahs in windows
    5. Starting a new book

  147. kristi ann Houk says...

    1. candles.

    2. hugs from my six-year-old daughter.

    3. winter sunsets.

    4. a brisk hike.

    5. the new Taylor Swift album – Evermore. ;)

    • Celeste says...

      I got 4 of these today, guess I should check out Taylor!

  148. Cate says...

    1) My daughter’s love for Harry Potter.
    2) Group text and Zooms with my mom and siblings.
    3) Our very cuddly cat.
    4) My daughter’s teachers.
    5) Trader Joe’s dark chocolate with almonds.

  149. Joanna Goddard says...

    1. My dad and I have been talking the phone a lot during quarantine, sometimes about big things, usually about nothing, and it makes me so happy.

    2. the great British baking show. I know I’m the last to the party, but wow the show is the most charming, and Anton and I love seeing the contestants’ “showstoppers” — in last night’s episode, one baker made a pie shaped like a treehouse, complete with a tiny swing!

    3. neighborhood walks and catching the scent of pine while walking by Christmas tree vendors.

    4. iced coffee.

    5. Anton had a sore throat and fever today, so we got a rapid test and it was negative. hope everyone is staying safe and healthy. xoxo

    • Stephanie says...

      Yes! We’ve gotten into watching the great British baking show with our two boys (7 and 4) over dinner one night a week and it’s an absolute delight! They contestants are all so talented and I love how kind they are to one another. Plus we’ve picked up a few fun new phrases. I’m trying to work “We gotta a wiggle on” into everyday conversation–especially when my little ones drag their feet getting out the door. ;)

    • M says...

      Glad you guys love bake off! For this year’s series, they all formed a bubble so it could still go ahead. Made Tuesday nights in lockdown so much better. We normally have bake off sweepstakes at work and take it in turn to bake for each other when our contestant is sent out. Hoping that happens again next year!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      How fun, M!

    • Claire says...

      lovely list! so glad anton is ok and that you have phone chats with your dad!

    • Annie says...

      Great British Baking Show – Christmas Special part 2 is the Derry Girls, and it will make you laugh/cry the entire show! My daughter and I have watched it 3 times already!

    • M2 says...

      Hope Anton feels better. I would like to say the Covid tests aren’t always reliable, especially the rapid tests so I would still assume he may have it.

      Someone I know lost taste and smell had multiple other symptoms took 3 tests all came back negative and she clearly had it! It’s flu season so stuff is going around, but I would get him another test (maybe not a rapid one) and still act like he has it. Better be safe than sorry! Get well soon, Anton!

  150. Anna says...

    – my children’s laughter every time they look at the holiday tree ornaments
    – hot soup on a cold day, even Top Ramen
    – an unexpected handwritten card in the mail from a friend
    – stuffing the last of the holiday cards into a stuffed-full mailbox
    – my coffee pot on a timer, so I can have hot delicious coffee when I get up