Sunday, August 4, 2013

Priceless Stuff I Love

I’ve blogged recently about inexpensive things that I love and about expensive things that I love. But today, I want to write about things that I love that you can’t possibly put a price tag on.

Fuzzy Baby Heads
My youngest has finally outgrown that marvelous “fuzzy baby head” stage. But when she and my son were infants, there was nothing in the world I loved better than to rub my face against that amazingly soft, downy, peach fuzz on their heads and inhale that clean, sweet, Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo smell. Nothing in the world can compare to the innocent perfection of fuzzy baby head smell.

Morning Snuggles
I am one of those people who takes quite a bit of time to wake up in the morning. I don’t go from 0 to 60 in 10 seconds; I need a full 30 minutes before I become coherent, never mind fully awake. But during that prolonged half-asleep, half-awake time in the early morning, there is nothing I love better than snuggling with my toasty warm husband. We don’t chat, we don’t communicate, we don’t plan our day, we just snuggle. There’s no better way to wake up.

Ice cold cocktails
I’m not a big drinker, but I do like a good cocktail before dinner now and then. And there’s nothing quite as satisfying (especially on a hot summer evening) as a perfectly chilled drink with condensation running down the side of the glass and a few ice chips floating alongside the garnish. So refreshing!

Finding “your” jeans
Every woman’s body is different, so every woman’s “perfectly fitting jeans” are different. It may take years to find the perfect pair of jeans for your body. I didn’t find mine until I was in my 30s: Gloria Vanderbilts. I can buy them without trying them on and still know they’ll be well-fitting, comfortable, and flattering. I’d willingly pay hundreds of dollars for jeans like that, but since I get them at Costco, they’re a cool $19.99 – in other words, priceless.

A beautiful sunrise 
No camera can truly capture the beauty of a perfect sunrise. So on the rare occasion that I see one, I save it in my memory instead of (or at least as well as) on a memory card. Not being a morning person, my sunrises are pretty rare. So I remember most of the ones I’ve seen – from a porch in Iowa, over a river in Zimbabwe, across the Serengeti Plain in Kenya, off a fire escape in Medford MA, and over the railing of a cruise ship somewhere in the Caribbean. Each one is a treasured memory.

That Look
You know, the one you get from your spouse or significant other now and then that sends chills up your spine, puts butterflies in your stomach, and just generally makes you feel like a million bucks? Yeah, THAT Look. I love That Look. It’s great when it’s in the middle of a special moment, like a slow dance or a proposal or a wedding, but it’s even better when it’s just caught across the room in the middle of a party or when you walk in the door after a long day of work or when you first wake up in the morning. You can’t put a price tag on That Look.

The Right Sing-Along-in-the-Car Song
You know how every once in a while, you turn on your car radio and the perfect song is playing for the mood you’re in? A song that you just can’t help singing along with no matter whether you’re on your way to the grocery store, to work, or to a funeral. So you just belt it out, adding in air guitar and air drum as required. Maybe it’s Bohemian Rhapsody, maybe it’s La Via Boheme, maybe it’s something from La Boheme, maybe it’s Bohemian Like You (yeah, I found that last one on Google. I was going to listen to it but I read the first sentence describing the video and decided that probably wasn’t the best idea. But based on that alone I think it’s safe to assume that it’s VERY different from the other three songs in this list). But be it pop, Broadway, opera, or alternative rock, everyone has at least one song that speaks to their heart, and that they can’t help singing along with. (For the record, mine include Brick House by the Commodores, Play That Funky Music White Boy by Wild Cherry, Never from “On the Twentieth Century” by Comden and Green, and Voi Che Sapete from Mozart’s “Nozze di Figaro.” Oh, and Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen. Duh.).

Walking through falling snow

I love the muffled near-silence of being in a snowstorm. I love the squeak and creak of fresh snow underfoot. I love the cold, prickly feel of snowflakes on my cheeks and nose. I love the way the whiteness of the snow covers all the dirt and imperfections of the world around. I love the startling coldness of inhaling the frigid air and the moist warmth of exhaling into my scarf.

Opening a new box of crayons

This is a love I had forgotten but rediscovered when I had kids. In fact, I probably value it more now that I have kids, because my kids are brutal on crayons. A box as perfect and pristine as the box above has a life expectancy of about half a second in my house. Each crayon perfectly sharpened. All properly dressed in their paper wrappers. All standing in perfect rows like soldiers on parade. None broken, none missing. All eagerly waiting to erupt onto paper in the form of beautiful artwork. Yellow waiting to become the sun, blue the sky, green the grass, red a smiling mouth, brown a barking dog, white a fluffy cloud. So much perfect potential, all wrapped up neatly in a little yellow box.

A kiss

A kiss from someone you care about, and who cares about you, is the best thing in the world. It can be the kiss of a lover, a friend, a child (yours or someone else’s), a parent, even a pet. A kiss reminds you that you are not alone in this world. Now that’s what I call priceless.

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