A Belly Button for My Bookcase

024Every bookcase needs a belly button. What? You don’t believe that? It just so happens that mine has one. (And yes, my bookshelves are crowded.)

Have you spotted it yet? The belly button I mean. It’s the word joy. A belly button reminds me that I was born a vulnerable human being—a tiny baby connected to my mother for nine months. Joy reminds me that I’m still a vulnerable human being in need of the fresh perspective that joy brings.

And of course, this season of Christmas with songs that declare “O tidings of comfort and joy” and “Joy to the World, the Lord is come” are a vivid reminder to be proactive about being joyful. Not always easy, huh?

Julie-as-Maria-maria-von-trapp-julie-andrews-30320447-486-750You know, the word joy has occupied my bookshelf so long—years actually—I stopped seeing it until today when I needed the reminder. See, instead of tidings of joy, I’ve been singing tidings of grumpiness, constantly focused on what I think I don’t have or what I do have (loud neighbors, a car with bald tires, a refrigerator without chocolate). I’d forgotten that joy, unlike happiness, isn’t intermittent or based on things going right. It’s an all-day feeling—a secret room in my heart. I can go there, put my feet up, and remember. As Maria (Julie Andrews) in The Sound of Music sang, “These are a few of my favorite things.”

Take a joy break with me today. Remember what brings you joy.

    zuko-300x185Plain-M&Ms-Pile

Royal_Poinciana

“These are a few of my favorite thiiiiiiiiiiiiings!”

Julie Andrews as Maria von Trapp from fanpop.com. Prince Zuko from probablymortal.com. M&Ms from shinebeautybeacon.blogspot.com. Royal Poinciana tree from commons.wikimedia.org.

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21 thoughts on “A Belly Button for My Bookcase

  1. Some of that joy made it all the way to my neck of the woods! Thanks for sending it! A few of my favorite things especially during the holidays? A holiday Sangria with cranberries floating, Michael Buble, dark chocolate kisses & Spanish Christmas Music. 🙂

  2. Oh my! Your bookcase looks like mine, Linda…minus the belly button! Joy and peace is a must if we’re going to make it in this world. Staying focused on what I do have, for me, it’s my health, is the way I hold on to my joy.

  3. Ooh, I need a bookshelf belly button! And you know ho much I need to focus on joy instead of the complaints that seem to crowd everything else out. That will be one of my New Year’s resolutions for 2014, no complaining! A few of my favorite things….fresh-baked cookies, snuggling in front of the fireplace with a cup of hot chocolate, a good game of Pandemic when we save the world, and a bike ride with Jerry to the biopark with a picnic.

  4. Oh! I need a bookshelf belly button! It’s such a neat concept.
    A few of my favorite things include anime, a visit to the bookstore (just to smell books), a cup of coffee, and a good book. 🙂

  5. Thank you, L. Marie, for sharing the joy. Some of my favorite holiday (and anytime) things are communal cookie baking with my friends–and then eating the cookies (this year’s favorite, dark chocolate mint cookies), warm furry cat tummies, singing (be it carols or whatever I’m listening to at the moment).

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