Crunching Season

*** Crunch.  Crunch, Crunch.  Cruuunch ***

One of my favorite seasons is here in full swing, crunching season.   (Oh you call it fall?  How original of you . . .)

Nothing says fall like walking on a path a freshly fallen leaves, especially when you purposely try to step on every leaf you can.  Crunchy golden leaves are the play things of our childhood.  The delightful embrace of jumping into an ocean of crackling leaves brings us back to the simpler days of our childhood.  As more and more leaves tumble to the ground, we cannot but help think about squashing them.

So as you contemplate joining in this fun activity, here are some different levels of leaf crunching to follow depending on your commitment to the endeavor.

The first level is the walk and stomp.  This level is for those who are still testing the waters of leaf jumping, and may be a little nervous about just jumping in.  These people happen across leaves as they are walking and stomp as many as they can without looking like they are trying to play in the leaves.  However, the subtle smile that plays on their lips is a dead giveaway for the joy they are currently experiencing from stomping those golden treasures.

The next level of leaf crunching is the glance and jump.  This level is for those who want to fully embrace the leaves, but are too shy to fully dive in.  They look around to make sure no one is watching, and then they jump on the leaves like a little kid in a rain puddle.  Since they are so sneaky, you will not be able to witness this type of cruncher.   Although, they can be spotted by the small giggle they are unable to suppress afterwards, because they just jumped in a leaves without anyone knowing.

The final level of leaf crunching is the run and plunge.  This level is only for the truly committed.  These crunchers throw off all abandon, when they see a pile of leaves they do not hesitant, they go for it.  They run at the leaf pile full speed and cannon ball into it, resulting in leaves flying everywhere.  They do not care if they come out with leaves sticking all over their hair and clothes; all that matters is the awesome feeling of being surrounded in a cloud of leaves.

Warning: the run and plunge may result in landing on a pointy stick that has worked its way into the pile.  Even if they land on a pointy stick, these crunchers emerge from the pile in full out laughter.  They can be spotted by the one leaf in the back of their hair that they forgot to get out.  Even if you are not feeling as dedicated as these crunchers, it is impossible to not find happiness in flattening leaves.

So as you watch the leaves trickle down in the wind, embrace the joy of the leaf crunching season.  Take a moment out of your day to stop and stomp some leaves, after all that is what they are there for, and remember that you are never too old to get joy of crushing leaves.  Happy crunching season.

Fall 1

Photo Credit: Unknown

Restlessness and the Pursuit of Happiness

“And how is work going?”

“Work is going good, I really can’t complain.  But . . . I don’t know I have been in kind of rut, it is hard to focus.”  *My mother made some soothing listening nosies* “I’m not sure exactly what is wrong because honestly I have a great job with great bosses, I should be happy with it.”  *more soothing listening noises*

Then finally realizing I would never get there on my own, she chimed in, “You’re restless.”

“Well, I mean I don’t know . . . yeah I suppose you are right.  I’m restless.”

My whole life I have struggled to be content, even in the times when life is relatively good. I didn’t want to live my whole life waiting for the next best thing.  I had to learn to think of life as a journey not a destination.  It wasn’t so much about where I was going in life that mattered but what happened along the way.  It helped with the restlessness because I started seeing life as something to enjoy as is and not as somewhere I needed to get to. I do mean helped.  I am far from cured.

I started spending a lot of time reading and thinking about what it meant to actually enjoy my life no matter where I was or what my circumstances were. Life gets hard and it moves way too fast.  I have been trying to find ways to make the most out of the time I have and the best out of the bad situations.  In my youth and naivety I decided to create a list of things which have helped enjoy my life a little bit more.  I don’t want to saying that this list has made me happy, because happiness is fleeting and not something that can be permanently attained.  But these things have at least made me happier and less restless.

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