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February 19, 2009

The Philosophy of Nicholas & Sarah

Did you ever notice that there are some people who have these incredible memories? They remember names, faces, dates, and things like how much they paid for their first car. Those people amaze me, and in truth I'm kind of envious of them for having that treasure trove of memories in their brains.

Over the years I've learned to accept the fact that my memory is pretty bad -- with the exception of those things that I remember like they were yesterday. Like family vacations to Cape May every summer -- and the amazing smell when you walked off the boardwalk into Morrow's Nut House. Or the night I met my husband at The Cask in Boston. Or the time I tripped going up onto the stage to be the magician's assistance at the Knights of Columbus Family Party.

Incredibly vivid memories -- every one of them. But there is one memory I have that I truly believe was a defining moment in my life.

It was spring of my senior year of college, and I was struggling with the "big question" about what I was supposed to do with my life. One of my roommates (and best friend), Michelle and I, decided to go to my parents' house one Sunday afternoon -- probably to do laundry. It was one of the first nice days of spring, and we were sitting in the driveway at my parents' house talking about life and trying to find the answer to the "big question."

The little neighbor girl (whose name I don't remember, so we'll just call her Sarah) was out playing in her yard with her younger brother, Nicholas. Sarah may have been 4 or 5 years old -- and when she saw us in the driveway, she came skipping over to us all giggly and grinning. Nicholas toddled along behind with sticky fingers, a runny little nose (you know the kind that makes bubbles when you breathe) and an enormous one-year old grin. You could tell he just adored his sister as he teetered behind her trying to keep his balance.

"Hello! What's you're name?" Sarah asked when she got to our driveway. Nicholas just grinned and came over and climbed into my lap.

Michelle and I introduced ourselves, then proceeded to talk to Sarah about all the things that a 5-year old wants to talk about -- dolls, butterflies, clouds, pigtails, pierced ears and the like. Nicholas just kept grinning and occasionally would reach up and touch my nose with his filthy little fingers.

All of the sudden, Sarah just stopped talking, and she stood up and looked at her brother, then she looked at us and said, "Nicholas is a cutie pie, and I just wanna hug him." And she did, right there and then she hugged her brother, and the two of them giggled like crazy.

It wasn't a minute later that she said goodbye and took off back to her yard, and Nicholas tried to keep up behind her.

Michelle and I sat in the driveway laughing about how adorable the two of them were. They didn't have a care in the world, and the most important thing was just being together, making friends and being happy.

"You know, Lol*, " Michelle said to me, "That's what it's all about. Right there -- that's the secret to life -- just be happy."

We sat silently in the driveway for a few minutes and digested the words -- both of us realizing that plain and simple truth.

The ride back to Muhlenberg that night was an easy one. All the stress of trying to answer "the big question" was gone, and we just laughed each time one of us would mimic little Sarah's words, "Nicholas is a cutie pie, and I just wanna hug him."

I may still be trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up, but fortunately Nicholas and Sarah taught us the best philosophy of life -- just be happy.

*Note: Lol is a nickname I've had since I was a child. My nieces & nephews call me Lolly...and someday I hope my grandkids will call me Lolly and my husband Pop. The nickname came long before LOL meant Laugh Out Loud...but I'm pretty pleased with that acronym. :)

44 comments:

singedwingangel said...

Ahh teh faith of a child, so simple in it's ability to remind us of what we should be doing.. Love this post..

AmericanTribal said...

What a great post! I bet if we all followed this philosophy, we'd be a lot happier :).

k80 @ onegirlsjourney said...

I like this one alot! One of my students said that one time when I had the seniors reflect on what they learned. She said, 'If you want to be happy, just be happy.'

Enough said! Stopping by from SITS! :)

Adrian's Crazy Life said...

The wisdom of children. Just be happy. I think we should all strive for that.

InspiredDreamer said...

What a beautiful post. So wonderful to realize that the truths in life are best learned from little children. May you always find joy. :)

Ma What's 4 dinner said...

OH, that story just made me happy, so thanks! Ok so been to the Cask in Boston, many times and met my hubs in a bar in Boston too. It was at Clarke's and I was bartending at the time so sort of different, but hey, gotta love the boys in Beantown.


Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner?
www.MaWhats4Dinner.com

Libby said...

Figuring out your life is hard! I took an extra year at college, and two additional minors for just such a purpose.
It sounds like things have worked out though. And now your daughter's is entering that phase as well. Good luck!!!

Melissa aka Equidae said...

loved your post and its quite true yes what you wrote

Rachel Cotterill said...

That's a great story - and pretty much sums up my philosophy for life, too :)

Hear Mum Roar said...

That is just beautiful, and so true! I believe children and animals hold all of life's answers, they are just so pure and keep life really simple.

Karen, author of "My Funny Dad, Harry" said...

Cute story and I like that philosophy. We can get all stressed out about things that in time will just work out.

Congrats on your SITS day!

JDaniel4's Mom said...

What a great post! What amazing children.

Yaya said...

Great story!!!

Elizabeth a.k.a. Type A Mommy said...

That's too funny, it sounds like Lol is a perfect nickname for you, with it's current meaning and all. What a lovely post. Happy SITS day again to you!

Eclipsed said...

Happy SITS Day!

This is a great post. So often the big lessons in life can be learned by watching and listening to children. Their existence is so much simpler then ours.

MeghanM said...

That is so sweet...and so true! Also, just what I needed to hear amidst major unnecessary drama going on in my husband's family. Thanks for sharing!

Kat @ TodaysCliche.com said...

Great memory! Great story! Coming from SITS!

Rachael said...

What a wonderful story! There is so much we can learn from the innocence of children! Happy SITS day!

Cheryl said...

Hi Lolly,
I'm honored to be the first to comment on this post which i can tell is one of your favorites. I feel like I'm making an angel in fresh snow...leaving a happy mark.

This line,""You know, Lol*, " Michelle said to me, "That's what it's all about. Right there -- that's the secret to life -- just be happy." expresses my philosophy on life too. How beautifully God expressed His message and what an excellent delivery system He chose. No resistance from you! A bullseye. So much so, that years later, the message is still fresh and able to deliver just as powerfully.

I've recently started a blog carnival - I'll leave the link here. I would love to include this post in my next edition. If you'd like to join in, click the link and follow the path to blogcarnval.com to submit this post for next Sunday's edition.

I'm glad you were featured this morning by the SITS girls this morning! Gave me a chance to meet you and say hello.

And I did read lol as "laugh out loud" and thought "wow, she said that back then!" haha!

here's the link:
http://thatgirlisfunny.com/2009/12/more-habits-for-staying-young-from-the-inside-out-episode-003/

Teresha@Marlie and Me said...

great story! we can learn so much by just watching children. LOL is a fitting nickname! happy SITS day!

Annie @ astonesthrowfrominsanity said...

I think that's why I love my kids sooooo much. No matter what is going on in my world, they remind me to just make a choice to be happy. :)

bluewhitelife said...

Hi! Visiting from SITS! My dad always told us that the secret to life is to be happy so looks like Nick and Sarah know what they're talking about! :) Well, knew...details :) I look forward to reading some more of your blog!

pk @ Room Remix said...

That pretty much sums it up! Great story and a great way to start out my week. Thank you.

leigh said...

You are a great writer. I was right there on the driveway with all of you. What a sweet moment to treasure.

Leigh

Pam said...

Holy moly, where to begin. First, this is a great story and I love the sentiment. I need to work on "just being happy". But I think you are right. Happiness can be a choice.

And second.... You went to Muhlenberg?! So did I! When were you there? I was there from 1982-1986. What a small world.

Thanks for taking be back to my long ago college days.

Karen said...

That really is an excellent philosophy. Just be happy, I think we all get caught up in life we forget to be happy, or what would really make us happy.

Karen

Miranda said...

I love this, too. It's so true. The secret to life IS to find a way to be happy in the midst of everything. My son has a smile that can light up a room and he loves to smile in the midst of his tears. It warms my heart.

Vivianne's Vista said...

I think that will be my new mantra to all I love! I've heard many a times that we make our happiness. This sounds like just the start! Thank you for sharing the memory.

Leah Rubin said...

Sarah sounds like quite the little sage! I'm going to try to remember that advice. Like you, I'm thinking she was on to something!

Found you via SITS!

Sarah and the Gentlemen said...

What a fun memory! More than just be happy, I'd say another lesson could be to show your loved ones that you love them even when you're in the midst of other stuff.

Happy SITS day!

Stefanie said...

What a great story...and what a perfect way to begin the New Year..."just be happy"

Have a wonderful SITS day! I'm very glad to have met you :)

Angelia (Texas) said...

What a sweet story and so true. Life really is simple. We should be more like children and just do what we feel with all our heart. Thank you for sharing this.

Lorri Jeanne said...

I loved that story! A cutie pie.... :)

Katy & Ross said...

Stopping by from SITS..happy SITS day!

What a cute story! (I have to admit that my favorite part comes at the very bottom...not even the story...where you want your grandkids to call you Lolly and your husband Pop...too cute!)

Janet said...

Stopping by from SITS. What a great post, and a fabulous way to live one's life!

Marilyn (A Lot of Loves) said...

That story reminded me of my kids. Sometimes one of them will just hug the other. It's so cute.

I think your grandkids will love calling you two Lolly and Pop.

Dawn said...

I LOVE that you want your grandkids to call you and your husband Lolly-Pop!
Happy SITS day!

Dawn said...

I LOVE that you want your grandlods to call you and your hubbie - Lolly-Pop!
Happy SITS day!

Lourie said...

"Lolly" sooo cute. I never had a nickname like that. As for memory...I have all the files, but they are scattered all over my brain and not filed neatly like those with the amazing memories.

Sarah and Nicholas do have the best philosophy.

Mama Kat said...

Ahhh...if only it could always remain as simple and easy as it was when we were five. :)

Gamma Sharon said...

Wow, wonderful post and so true! Life has a way of working itself out as long as we let it, with Faith and Love God will show us the way!

Kim said...

That is a cute story. My philosophy would be to have faith in Christ as a child...

Kristin said...

I need to remember that more. Fabulous post!

Marie said...

What a sweet story, thank you for sharing!

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