Simple pleasures…

As we get older, I think we become more aware of ‘simple’ pleasures’, well I know I do! The smell of coffee brewing, freshly cut grass or hearing an owl hoot – all simple things that give immense pleasure.

I read the other day that Vita Sackville-West (she of Sissinghurst Garden fame, amongst other things…) used the term ‘through leaves’ to describe simple pleasures enjoyed by her family. She coined the phrase after “the small but intense pleasure of kicking through leaves while out walking”, which I thought was rather lovely.

Another classic, that I expect almost all of us know, are the lyrics to the song ‘My favourite things’ from the Sound of Music, including whiskers on kittens, warm woollen mittens and brown paper packages tied up with string.

It’s so easy to think that pleasures have to be big and expensive, like holidays, or fancy clothes… but I think we start to appreciate the simple things the more we experience life. You often hear people who have survived cancer, or cheated death in an accident or natural disaster, say how they appreciate every day, every moment, and are more aware of what’s around them.

I had a think about my ‘through leaves’ moments, and came up with the following list:

  • The smell of baking bread (thanks to Richard and his bread maker!)
  • Little Grace running towards me with her arms open
  • A beautiful sunset (or dawn, but that’s rare!)
  • Hearing my daughters say a casual I love you
  • Finishing a card and sitting back and thinking – that’s a keeper!

My co-author Julia was here (we were busy having a book signing session!) and I asked her, for her ‘Through leaves’ moments and she said:

  • Standing in the middle of her runner bean arch(!)
  • Being greeted by her dog, Moss, in the morning
  • Watching beech leaves unfurl in spring
  • Walks on frosty mornings
  • Birdsong

So what are your ‘through leaves’ moments? Do let me know… smiles, Joanna


18 replies
  1. syy says:

    Thank you for sharing your simple pleasures they made me feel so relaxed and at peace. I am a very pessimistic person and it saps so much of your energy.

    • Joanna Sheen says:

      I’m so happy it made you feel relaxed. I always feel thinking about the good things, even the simplest things, in your life does help drive out the bad. Joanna

  2. Barbara Gosden says:

    What a lovely post about simple pleasures. My ‘through leaves’ moments would have to include: watching birds on the feeders in our garden, the smell of freshly baked bread (love my breadmaker) and freshly brewed coffee (another great machine), and looking at photos of our new granddaughter born earlier this month.

  3. Rosemarie says:

    For me it has to be my youngest Grandson’s cuddles (not quite 2) nothing comes close. Thank you for sharing your moments. X

  4. Julie Allen says:

    Lovely to hear your simple pleasures. Mine are:
    Seeing the washing on the line blowing in the breeze.
    Watching the birds frolicking in the bird bath.
    The beautiful colours that nature brings us at this time of the year.
    My 19 year old son making me a cup of tea.
    My husband sharing his ‘special’ biscuits!
    Regards Julie x

  5. Dawn says:

    My absolute favourite, and “desert island luxury” is sliding into freshly laundered (& ironed) bedlinen. My friends think I’m mad to iron my bedding but for me it’s bliss.

    I also love the aroma of laundry which has been dried outside.


  6. Linda says:

    I really enjoy your Blog, Joanna. Thank You.
    Lawn just mowed, surprise visit from our son and birds in the garden. These are a few of my ‘through leaves’ moments.

  7. Mo Milton says:

    The sound of wild geese flying over at this time of year. The sound of bees on the rosemary outside the front door. The first snowdrops, hazel catkins, flowers on the mahonia. The smell of a bonfire in Autumn.

  8. Theresa Goodwin says:

    Ohh Joanna loved reading your views on Vegas I took my other half a supprise 60th birthday present as it was always his dream to visit Vegas.
    I thought I would hate it but as you say it is a wonderful place lots to see and to do So any one toying with the idea of going just do it you won’t be disappointed .


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