Practical Daily Pleasure-- Creating Pleasurable Habits

  • A good cup of loose leaf tea in the morning, with a square of delicious dark chocolate.

    Sitting outside in the morning, either with said tea and chocolate or with some water, reading and noticing any birds, butterflies, squirrels, clouds, sun, breeze... or just the blue of the sky and the colors of the landscape.

    Preparing and eating a big, tasty, healthy breakfast.

    Going to the neighborhood YMCA to exercise: cardio some days, strength training others, followed by a stretch. Some days a walk along the beach replaces cardio in the Y; this is a vast improvement, but I'm currently benefiting from the increased intensity that I'm getting indoors.

    Evenings, either stream a good show or movie with my wife or read a book on my own.

    Sundays, a few hours of date time with my wife and perhaps some friends.

    Each night before bed I go outside to look at the stars. As I live in the city this is a mixed bag: I often think of the line from a movie (Dan Aykroyd? Bill Murray?) "ah, look at the stars! There must be dozens of them!" A trip to the desert or mountains is overdue!

    I keep thinking that I need to schedule more pleasures into my day and week, but after making this list I see I've got a good start. One pleasure that is forthcoming (and tantalizingly close) is the completion of a garage studio in which to enjoy a variety of creative endeavors and ping pong.

  • Godfrey, in my garage I currently have my coffee roaster corner, the very tall stand for my yoga trapeze (with a gym mat under it), and weights... I may have room, actually, for ping pong, come to think of it! Lol! My family had a ping pong table when I was growing up, and my dad's parents also... lots of fun memories.

    My possibly strange interior design tastes are going to show up big time in the garage, eventually... I'm going to paint it midnight blue, hang bistro lights, stick glow in the dark stars on the ceiling, and hang things like planet mobiles and bird pinatas. This winter when it gets cold, I plan to try making a giant papier mache tree for my living room. I have a spare room downstairs that my son and I use to do paintings and various craft projects.

  • Wow! That sounds great Elayne! My interior design is pretty much the opposite: walls and rafters painted white, and a couple of new skylights to add lots of light. Over time I anticipate it getting populated with a variety of as yet undetermined creations. I've got a gigantic drafting table that's been passed down for a couple of generations which will feature prominently as well.

    Outside are a red door and a blue door, along with a west facing patio wall painted "golden buff" which catches the sunset quite nicely. All rather modern though.

    Ping pong wise, I plan to keep half of the table vertical while it's in the garage so it will be a practice table. For games it can roll out onto the driveway/patio with both sides down, if that makes any sense. Although I normally play just for fun, I've got a friend who destroys me when we play; hopefully the practice time will help in addition to providing some fun breaks from other activities.

  • This thread turned out to be quite a lot of fun!

    Two years ago I was working 12+ hours a day in two different restaurants. Now I spend 8-10 hours a day on the road, listen to books or podcasts, pay nothing in rent, and live well within my means (for the first time since college). So while I sometimes miss the little comforts of a settled life, I have a MUCH healthier mind-space day to day.

    Today I listed to A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson, for the 5th or sixth time. Elayne, you should look into it before your spring hiking!