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The Adventure of Happiness

You guys. We’ve been snowed in since Friday, with no school yesterday or today. I love my kids, but it’s feeling a little…crowded. School has been queued up for tomorrow morning, and this mama has big plans. I’m going to a) have a private poo, b) have chips and Corona for breakfast and c) walk around naked petting the cat. And Andrew, if he’s home. I hope he is. Well, after the poo.

This weather makes it a little more difficult than usual to feel positive. To feel hopeful. To feel happy. A few weeks ago I received a book in the mail written by Dr. David McDonald called “The Adventure of Happiness.” I’ve known Dave since high school in oh… 1993. Whoop there it is. But then, get this. Dave’s dad dedicated me in his church when I was a newborn! In…1978. Ooof. But Dave sent me his book because I asked him for it, and I asked him for it because I saw him post about it on Instagram and something about Dave and his book and his posts just drew me in.

I get pulled in by things and people who give real shits. Who aren’t trying to snow me, or get me or convert me.

Dave gives shits. And that’s just it. Because this book isn’t about some person up there preaching to us down here, giving us to-do lists on how to get as happy as they are, to reach some euphoric heavenly state as if they’ve just been given a spiritual enema. While he constructs his book in such a way that we are first empowered with knowledge, he doesn’t just leave us hanging there, because at the end of each chapter is a short life hack on how we can put that knowledge to practical use.

But this is the thing: he talks to us like we’re sitting there in his living room, busting a gut and breaking bread. Drinking too much wine, or getting sticky crap all over the keys of our laptops. So while we’re out there practicing what we’re learning, we feel like he’s hanging around our struggles saying, “Yeah, me too” and around our small victories saying, “Atta girl.”

By now, I think you guys know how much free time I have, right? And I read this book in two days, not because it’s phluffy but because it’s phat. I scribbled so much into the margins that when I went to type out this post, I just tossed the whole book to the side and thought fuckit. I won’t quote anything because it takes away its potency. I want you to read it. I want you to read it because I give shits too. About you.

If you want it a copy, here’s the Amazon link to the good stuff. Dave was kind af to give me the book for free, but I’m receiving zero compensation for this post or for any purchases made through this link on this post. It’s just one big love-fest.

Did you guys ever read that book called The Happiness Project? I bought it, got about 20 pages in and retired it to the crawlspace. But I’ve actually heard really good things about it. 

Have you ever had a sticky keyboard? Why?

Do you want to ask me anything about the book? I can write more about it in the comments! Or I bet Dave answer some too!


{ 25 comments… add one }
  • Lisa @ Mile by Mile February 8, 2017, 1:53 am

    Sounds like you guys have had so much snow this year. We have had just about none, but today its 65 degrees and then tonight they are calling for 1-2 inches of snow…which I dont think will really happen.
    This sounds like a great book. I am all about books that are practical, I want to learn something and actually be able to try things out!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 8:08 am

      We’ve got like 24 inches of frigging snow. GET ME OUT OF HERE.

  • Megan @ Meg Go Run February 8, 2017, 2:48 am

    I freaking love when I find a book that I just can’t put down!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 8:08 am

      It doesn’t happen often. Not in years, actually. Not since the last Anne Lamott book!

  • Allie Capo-Burdick February 8, 2017, 3:17 am

    I love to read and I love you so obviously this is a MUST read!

    We are getting exactly one snowstorm on Thursday and I’m losing my mind thinking about the boys being home all.day.long.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 8:07 am

      If that happens, message me during the day and I’ll help you through it! We can tell each other horror stories and laugh our guts out.

  • Susie @ Suzlyfe February 8, 2017, 3:39 am

    Sticky keyboard because of popcorn fingers. Not for other reasons.
    A book like this by someone who gives shits and knew you back when? On the reading list!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 8:06 am

      You won’t regret it!

  • Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home February 8, 2017, 5:41 am

    I tried to like the Happiness Project too. I read it but I couldn’t tell you one thing that was on the pages. I think Gretchen Rubin is capitalizing on people’s search for happiness. You’re not going to find it in a book, that’s for sure!

    I know that claustrophobia from being snowed in. Hang in there. Enjoy your poo. And Andrew.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 8:06 am

      The poo has already landed. It’s going to be a good day.

  • Gretchen February 8, 2017, 6:01 am

    I couldn’t really get into the Happiness Project. Gretchen is a little bit out there and a bit too intense for me. I mean I get it because I can be that way too (must be a Gretchen thing) but I’ve always forced myself to rein it in so I’m not (as she says in her podcast) the happiness police.

    It’s so hard for me to stay positive in the winter. We always have really dark winters with lots of awful weather. This year is much better because I’m forcing myself to get out more and be more social. Sometimes you just need to get going to keep moving! #SCIENCE

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 8:06 am

      Fresh air makes all the difference. The snow is chaining me to the treadmill but last night on Instagram I saw a friend of mine post about her run outside in the snow, and she said it was the best run ever. I guess I could go outside? I’m nervous about falling though!

      • Gretchen February 8, 2017, 12:21 pm

        Get yak trax! Plus, the colder it is the less you slip on ice. Snow provides traction too!

        • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 6:05 pm

          The snow is like, knee-deep. So I’d either be running in knee-deep snow or I’d have to jump through a wall of plowed snow to get to the road, which has barely been cleared. Our 4-lane roads are now 2-lane roads and so there’s no room on there to run. What I’m pretty much saying is that it’s bullshit and I’m grumpy, and craving a tall scotch and a hot shag.

  • Jen February 8, 2017, 6:27 am

    I have cheezies in my keyboard

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 8:05 am

      = happiness!

  • Ange // Cowgirl Runs February 8, 2017, 9:38 am

    I enjoyed The Happiness Project, but Better than Before was far better. I’m a nerd when it comes to stuff like habits and life improvement, so this book (and Gretchen Rubin) and totally up my nerdy alley.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 6:06 pm

      I’ve never heard of Better Than Before! I’ll check it out. I’m totally standing with you in that nerdy alley. Maybe it’s a Canadian thing?

  • Ana February 8, 2017, 1:48 pm

    I will be checking out this book. I never read the Happiness Project… maybe i’ll look it up.

    I’m sorry you are stuck inside with crappy weather! We are getting snow tomorrow, and things are already closing here. I love being cooped up with my son inside all day, but I start falling apart after 10 hours of not being outside. My brain needs the outside.

    My son makes my phone sticky all the time! I love him for this! if it didn’t make it harder to type, I would leave his sticky fingers on my phone forever.

    Did the book give rules or anecdotes? I like books that do both.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 6:03 pm

      My brain needs the outside too!!! SO MUCH. I’m like a dog with its head out the car window, my tongue waving like a flag in the wind, smelling all the smells, feeling all the feels. GIVE ME ALL THE FRESH AIR.

      Super cute about your son giving you a sticky phone. <3

      The book is chock-full of anecdotes, which is my favourite style of non-fiction helpful writing. Dave is vulnerable and open, tells his stories and struggles, how he figured a way out of his messes, and then gives us practical advice on how to get out of ours. Two thumbs up.

  • Laura @ This Runner's Recipes February 8, 2017, 3:29 pm

    That sounds like a really interesting book! I haven’t read the Happiness Project, although I did send a copy to my mother-in-law last Christmas.
    I have a terrible habit of eating breakfast, lunch, and my afternoon snack at my computer, so my keyboard is messy.
    I hope you get some respite from this weather! So.much.snow.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com February 8, 2017, 5:59 pm

      I’m sure some mother in laws would get their knickers in a knot if their daughter in law sent them a book on how to get happy. Ha ha ha! I’m assuming you two have a good relationship. 🙂

      I know what you mean about eating while typing. Multi-tasking is everything!

      More snow tonight. FRICKING CRAZY.

  • San February 9, 2017, 11:52 am

    I tried to read the Happiness Project, but didn’t finish either. It’s supposedly good, but it was a little preachy…. now I want to read that book by your friend Dave.

  • Helly on the Run February 10, 2017, 9:12 am

    I’m always a little weary of self-help/motivational books and am more drawn to memoirs and like you said, books from people who give shits.

    I’m gonna check this one out! <3

  • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets February 13, 2017, 12:36 pm

    I’ve got peanut butter on my keyboard mainly because I’m eating an apple and PB right now and I’m sloppy.
    I hope you got to pet Andrew and poo in private.

    I read Razor Girl in a matter of days. It’s light, well-written and so funny. I was dying.

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