July 10, 2010

26 things that always make me smile

The world is a never-ending playground of possibility, and I for one have long been enticed by countless elements that it presents its inhabitants with. Not one to tunnel vision my way through life, I fall into the eclectic camp. Admiring, questioning, enveloping myself with, fantasizing about, falling head-over-heels in love with countless places, items, people, moments, creations, sounds, scents, tastes, thoughts.

While, naturally, certain things consistently rank highest on my list of favourites, it seems that each day a new fascination comes along that brings joy to heart, intrigues my intellect, makes me question past assumptions, gets me as revved up as a hummingbird, sooths my soul, spurs my creativity, or simply – and perhaps most importantly – makes me even more thankful that I’m alive.

Today in particular it’s easy to reflect on the fact that I’m a living, breathing member of society, for on this particular date 26 years ago, I entered the world.

In celebration of my birthday, I thought it would be delightfully fun to share with you all, twenty six (amongst the countless number of) random, wonderful things that have long been passions, interests, dreams, and favourites of mine. One entry for each year I’ve called this humble planet home.

~*~ 26 things that always make me smile ~*~

~*~ Creative individuals ~*~

~*~ Perfectly golden duchess potatoes ~*~

~*~ Rambling, charmingly aged British manor houses ~*~

~*~ Songs that have the power to instantly bring me right back to another time and place in my life ~*~

~*~ Kitchen items in my favourite colour (pink!) ~*~

~*~ Bing Crosby ~*~

~*~ The rich scent of chimney smoke drifting through the air on a bitingly cold day ~*~

~*~ Writing letters by hand ~*~

~*~ The strength and wisdom my mother has shown me ~*~

~*~ Wildly electric lightning storms ~*~

~*~ The feeling of fresh beginnings that comes with new school supplies ~*~

~*~ Baroque and Rococo art, decor, and fashion ~*~

~*~ Being BFFs with my husband ~*~

~*~ The almost haunting call I feel to travel to the Yukon (where I have ancestral roots) ~*~

~*~ Ultra feminine fashions ~*~

~*~ Pulling together a delicious meal on the fly when it appears that there’s “nothing to eat” ~*~

~*~ Splendidly pretty, crisp-as-Melba toast, jewel toned autumn leaves ~*~

~*~ Matryoshka dolls (and anything depicting them) ~*~

~*~ Sporting both ruby red lipstick and nail polish at the same time ~*~

~*~ The feeling that comes from holding a vintage item and sensing that a snippet of time is resting in your palms ~*~

~*~ Russian literature ~*~

~*~ Snuggling up with a ridiculously cozy blanket ~*~

~*~ Reaching for the stars ~*~

~*~ The incredibly tranquil sensation of a warm summer breeze ~*~

~*~ Drive-in movie theaters ~*~

~*~ All of you, my amazing vintage loving blog friends! ~*~

{All images above are from either Flickr or Wikipedia. To learn more about a specific image, please click on it to be taken to its respective Flickr or Wikipedia page.}

As another birthday morn commences, I am acutely aware that there will be events in the coming twelve months that will be anything but gorgeous at times, however it’s unrealistic to say expect life to always be a bed of roses (an ingrained truth that age seems to make one all the more attuned to).

Yet, am I as certain as the air I breathe, that more often than not, the entries above, plus many more new discoveries and favourites, and the mysterious promise of the very future itself will keep me smiling for another exhilarating year – and really, what more could any birthday girl possibly ask for? :)


  1. Happy Birthday Jessica!!!!! I hope you have a truly wonderful day! Love your list :-)

  2. Aw! Love everything on your list!!! (I love Matroyshka dolls too :o)
    Happy, Happy, Happy Birthday! And hope you are feeling well!

    Blessings & Aloha!
    trying to do some blog reading before my hubby and our son (from college) wake up and we start the day hanging out together...

  3. Wishing you a very happy birthday, Jessica!
    How weird to land upon your blog on such a special day. I love your list and share quite a few of those favourite things.
    Have a great day!
    Zoe xx

  4. Happy, happy birthday Jessica! I hope your have a wonderful day and year!

  5. Hello...

    Stopping over from Kathie's place to say Happy Birthday.. I loved the way you did this post. I may have to do something like that for my Birthday in a few weeks..

    Have a great day.. I am also going to be following you know. I really liked what I saw when I looked around. THanks..

    Enjoy your day..

  6. As the great Picasso said "Your birthday is a special time to celebrate the gift of "you" to the World!" which is so very true for a gal who shares so many gifts, and treasures of bygone days with us! Thank you sweet friend! May you have the happiest of birthdays and that your marvelous list continues to grow with lotts of fun, fantastic things! Happy Birthday!
    ((Endless Hugs))

  7. When I saw the title of your blog I wondered how in the world people come up with 5 things that make them smile, much less 26. I mean, I smile alot but I'm not sure I could put down on paper (or computer) what makes me smile at any one time. All that gobble-de-gook being said, though, I found that the same 26 things that make YOU smile make ME smile, too. So thanks for making me smile, Miss Jessica! And a very happy birthday to you, as well.

  8. Happy Birthday! What a wonderfully happy list---so many of these would make it on a list of my own.

  9. What a beautiful post to share on YOUR day! Happy Birthday and many more!


  10. Happiest of Birthdays to you, dear Jessica!!! Your blog always makes me smile!! big hugs for a beautiful day. xoxo – g

  11. Happy Birthday, Jessica! What splendidly delightful post. I hope you had a wonderful day, dear.

  12. Hope you are having a wonderful birthday! We're glad your with us and sharing your wonderful point of view. I adore your list of 26 things. Hope you are feeling better.

    Best Wishes,

  13. Hi Jessica,
    I hope you had a great Birthday yesterday! I love your list of 26 things. It made me smile.

  14. Hope your birthday was filled with things that made you smile! Except for the Yukon, the things on your list always make me smile, too. Maybe I can substitute your list for the Yukon, because it certainly made me smile today.

  15. happy happy happy happy Birthday Jess. hope this 26th year of life is your best yet!
    all my love
    - Smoo <3

  16. This has to be the nicest post I have seen.
    I agreed with you about the blanket, kitchen items and hand written letters.
    Have a great day.

  17. Beautiful post, Jessica. It definitely made me smile :) I hope that you had a really wonderful birthday and that your day was filled of lots of things that made you smile!

  18. Happy birthday Jessica!
    Wishing you happiness, health, and tons of smiles. Hope you had a nice day and were spoilt rotten.


  19. Hello Jessica...so happy to find your blog! And a happy belated birthday to you! I find we sure share a lot of things that make us smile...these vintage photos are GREAT!

  20. I love anything to do with potatoes, I have always wanted to start collecting nesting dolls. I love all the different variations. Also besides leaves that cherry car makes me smile too.

    And Happy Birthday!

  21. hi Jessica- feel like I havent been here forever- LOVE LOVE LOVE your list ! Amazing as always!

  22. I saw these today, and instantly thought of you.

  23. Those delicious looking potatoes are certainly making me smile right now!

  24. You're right! That was delicious and made me smile :)