Everyday Joy

Erika Petrelli
Erika Petrelli

Happiness, with a capital H, can feel so elusive for so many. But what about everyday joy? These are the two words that have been floating through my head the last few days: everyday joy. Everyday joy. How and where can we find joy in everyday moments? How can we look for joy, and by doing so perhaps stumble our way into happiness?

I’m taking keen note of my everyday joy moments right now. Here’s a few from the past few days:

I woke up this morning with both children snuggled soundly next to me, having found the comfort they needed to find sleep in the tucks of my arms. 

The shower water was so warm; it enveloped me like a blanket and allowed my stressed shoulders to relax.

The full moon was still high in the sky on the morning ride to pre-k the other day… a glistening gift that felt like some kind of trick of sunlight. The best part was that Dylan spotted it first and shouted "OH! There's the Moon!!"

Dylan asked me if I could come to school and eat lunch with him, and when I thought about if for a second and realized, “YES! I could!” the smile on his face could have melted an iceberg. 

A character on Marlowe’s favorite TV show accidentally punched her boyfriend in the face with a plaster block and Marlowe laughed so spontaneously and so hard, just the way I do, still, whenever someone gets bonked on the head.

My hubby declared that Marlowe’s best friend would forevermore be nicknamed “Corn Dog” and for some reason that cracks me up every time I hear it.

“Corn Dog,” who is 8, happens to also have a crush on my Dylan (who is 4), so every time she comes over to play she manages to profess her admiration over his sweet face or kind personality, or just straight out declare her undying love.

I finally conquered the organization of our kitchen pantry, which is the size of a closet but which I treat like it’s a walk-in pantry so it is constantly overflowing and chaotic.


I got to watch Marlowe play her second-ever basketball game and it was so fantastic to see the absolute fun she, and the rest of the girls, are having despite the fact that hardly any of them have a clue what they are doing.

Dylan painted my face this weekend and so his beautiful eyes were inches away from mine and I could just soak them in as he concentrated hard on whatever look he was intently trying to create.

There are more, of course. These everyday joy moments can pile up fast if you start to pay attention to them—and what a better way to spend the time of your mind than instead focusing on what is wrong or what you’re missing. As Sufi poet Ghalib said, “Every particle of creation sings its own song of what is and what is not. Hearing what is can make you wise; hearing what is not can drive you mad.”

What are some of your everyday joy moments?

Leave some in the comments below or tweet me @ErikaPetrelli1



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"Everyday Joy", Th Leadership Program, Inc., 2016

Erika Petrelli

By Erika Petrelli

Erika Petrelli is the Senior Vice President of Leadership Development (and self-declared Minister of Mischief) for The Leadership Program, a New York City-based organization. With a Masters degree in Secondary Education, Erika has been in the field of teaching and training for decades, and has been with The Leadership Program since 1999. There she has the opportunity to nurture the individual leadership spirit in both students and adults across the country, through training, coaching, keynotes, and writing. The legacy Erika strives daily to create is to be the runway upon which others take flight. If you enjoy these blogs, you should check out her interactive journal, On Wings & Whimsy: Finding the Extraordinary Within the Ordinary, now available for sale on Amazon. While her work takes her all around the country, Erika calls Indiana home.