Simple pleasures bring small bursts of happiness into my life. So often I see people wait for happiness to come to them, to rush in and bring them bursts of joy. While happiness may sometimes sweep in like a wave crashing on the beach, more often than not I watch people sitting on the shore, dipping their toes into the water and wishing for more. I have found myself on that very same beach before, waiting for life to bring me something I could not find on my own. Instead of bringing what you desire, the waiting takes it from you, drawing it out to sea and leaving you in its wake, washed up on the shore.
Eventually, I could not wait anymore. Happiness, it seems, was something I'd have to make for myself.
It is not hard to find happiness in your own life, but some moments you may have to dig a little deeper to find it. I try to find my joy in the small pleasures of everyday life, to build happiness between the beams in the structure of my life. I wear fuzzy socks and lounge on the couch because it makes me feel content. I light candles at night and enjoy the flames dancing around a dark room because I deserve to see beauty. I buy rusted spoons and thrift store plates because these simple items bring me a silly amount of joy. I buy the expensive dairy-free butter because I finally decided I am worth the cost.
I eat chocolate every single day (and I will never apologize for it).
These small moments bring me happiness. I had to find happiness on my own terms, to remind myself that happiness surrounds me, to open my eyes to the world around me. I had to stop wishing and take action. When I feel myself crossing the sands back to the beach, I go to the gym and take my emotions out on the elliptical machine. I knead my frustration into bread dough and bake it into something delicious. Happiness in a conscious decision.
Where do you find the happiness in your life?
Bruléed Grapefruit is one of my simple, joyful pleasures. I like to enjoy one for a sweet breakfast or a bright afternoon snack. A grapefruit is sliced in half, sprinkled with spices and brown sugar, and broiled until the sugar melts into a sweet syrup. A dash of cinnamon and cloves brings a unique warmth to the tart grapefruit, which I find quite welcoming. Whether you serve one or two, Bruléed Grapefruit is a warm treat that adds a spark of energy to the quiet citrus fruit.
Yields 1-2 servings
1 ripe grapefruit, cut in half
2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of cloves
Loosen grapefruit segments slightly with a paring knife or spoon, cutting only an inch down. Place grapefruits cut side up onto a baking sheet.
In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar and spices. Spread evenly over the top of the halved grapefruits. Place the baking sheet on the top shelf of the oven and broil the grapefruits for 4-6 minutes, or until the sugar has completely melted. Watch very closely! Alternatively, you can use a kitchen torch and melt the sugar, though it will not heat the grapefruits as thoroughly.