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What Makes Your Heart Go Mellow?

"Blue makes my heart go mellow..." sings my eight-year-old daughter in lullaby-style from her bedroom, where she is playing with a selection of her stuffed animals, pretending to be their mother.

I've always loved it when my children make up their own songs and sing them without knowing or caring if anyone is listening. I remember my son singing long ago about "a monkey walking down the street in his monkey pants with a monkey belt." And my daughter singing "squirrels in the trees like to nibble, nibble, nibble." These spur-of-the-moment songs are like a secret peek into their busy brains as they're making sense of the world, or making up new worlds entirely.

In the middle of my work, I pause to listen to my daughter's little song (and to melt). What a lovely turn of phrase: "Makes my heart go mellow." It makes me think:

What else makes my heart go mellow?

Seeing an elderly couple holding hands.

Whenever my velvety-eared dog (already a heart-melter) lets out a deep, contented sigh, right before settling down for a nap.


The heady scent of lilacs wafting on a spring breeze.

Every last little thing about Mourning Doves.

As soon as I saw the trailer for "Far from the Madding Crowd", I knew I'd be smitten by the movie (and boy, was I right!).

People who rescue animals for a living.

A baby's "Ritz Cracker" hands (you know, with those little dimples at the knuckles) and pudgy "Flintstones" feet.

The Collected Tales of Beatrix Potter. (And I love, love, love how Beatrix Potter spent her author royalties on buying up woodlands in England to save them from development.)

My 104-year-old great aunt.

Chipmunks, especially mid-scamper.

Ray Bolger singing as the Scarecrow, Gene Kelly singing in the rain, and Dick Van Dyke singing his children to sleep in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Studying tiny creatures through a macro lens and realizing they're just going about their day, doing the best they can to make it in a very large world.


Jeff Buckley's version of "Hallelujah."

Remembering my gruff grandfather, who had a soft spot for me when I was very little and let me put sponge curlers in his thinning hair while he watched the Yankees and smoked cigars.

Coloring books, paper dolls, wooden pull-toys.

Typewriters--the very oldest ones with circular keys.

Looking through boxes of old photographs, curled at the edges and yellowed with age, of my parents and grandparents--and their parents, too.

Remembering so many furry friends who are no longer with us.

Remembering the magical woods of my childhood home.

Remembering, remembering, remembering...and being immensely grateful.

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 © 2016 by Joy Sussman/JoyfullyGreen.com LLC. All rights reserved. All photos and text digitally fingerprinted and watermarked. Please do not use any photographs without asking me first for permission at [email protected] and then clearly linking back to this site with photo credits. Site licensed by Creative Commons.

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This post first appeared on Joyfully Green, please read the originial post: here

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What Makes Your Heart Go Mellow?

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