a peek inside the fishbowl

17 Oct, 2017

Things that are making me happy right now

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life

Sometimes it helps to focus on good things in our lives. This is especially true when the world seems more than a little crazy. So with that in mind, here’s a short list of things that are making me happy right now.

My chives:

Outdoor chives are now indoor chives

Chives are a vastly underrated herb, as far as herbs go. They are forgiving, practically indestructible, and come back every year. PLUS, they’re great on eggs, and anything else that requires a mild boost of oniony goodness. We have a decent-sized clump in our backyard so I thought it might be a good idea to shave off a small part of it and move it indoors for the winter so I can have a FRESH HARVEST OF CHIVES all year long. They seem to be doing okay!

After-lunch walks with the dog:

Post lunch stroll with Piper

I’m not always able to take Piper around the block for a stroll, but when I do, and when I am able to let go of how slow she can be sometimes (she’s a sniffer, this one) it’s quite nice. I get to stretch my legs and decompress and we both get fresh air in our snoots. It’s a win-win for all involved.

My new shoes:

New shoes and a nice dog

I bought them at Ardene’s, which is the last place I generally look for shoes, but I was tagging along with one of the girls when I saw these PINK velvety ruffled slip-on shoes and I realized I just had to have them. The sad part of this story is that I had to buy those tiny sockettes to go with them and have already lost one somewhere between the bedroom and the laundry room. THEY ARE PRACTICALLY INVISIBLE. Oh well.

A new mini-library that is right down the street from our place:

new mini library!

I am VERY excited about this. Reading makes me very happy. (By the way, that Bill Bryson book is gone now. Sorry neighbours but I was there first.) Speaking of reading. Let’s connect on Goodreads! I’m tracking everything I read over there.

And this will sound very strange, but brushing my teeth has been making me happy lately:

Yes, that is toothpaste.

I know. So weird, right? I had a bit of an epiphany. I started brushing my teeth after lunch with some toothpaste I picked up at terra20 awhile back. (Disclosure alert: terra20 is a longtime Fishbowl patron but hey, I like this toothpaste and it’s worth talking about!) I also bought a new toothbrush. I normally use an electric OralB that has a built-in, two-minute timer, but our hygienist recommended switching things up sometimes to reach spots that one misses as a result of deeply ingrained toothbrushing patterns. At first, I was only brushing after lunch when I remembered to so but before long I was doing it every day. And you know what? A switch flipped in my head. I stopped seeing toothbrushing as an annoying task we have to do twice a day and started seeing it as a treat. It’s a nice little break during the day. Just me and my nice toothbrush and toothpaste! It’s like a mini-meditation that ends with minty breath. What a luxury. I wonder, what else in my life could use a slight shift of perspective? Probably lots of things.

What is making YOU happy right now? I’d love to hear what’s on your list.


Edited to add: I meant to mention that I am enjoying your comments on this giveaway post. Another thing that makes me happy: promoting a great local business and hosting giveaways I know you will love. xo

3 Responses to "Things that are making me happy right now"


October 17th, 2017 at 1:23 pm


Why MUST you wear sockettes with the new shoes?

2 | andrea tomkins

October 17th, 2017 at 3:35 pm


Well, it’s not required by law, but I find they help with blisters and potential stinky feet (especially given the fact these kinds of shoes aren’t made with breathable materials).

3 | KristaR

October 18th, 2017 at 1:59 pm


The warm and sunny weather in Ottawa and your adorable new shoes are making me happy today :)

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  • andrea tomkins: I'm glad you find it restful Bonnie! I didn't on that day. :)
  • Bonnie Upton: I have a true love of this place. I drive to and from Ottawa from the NewmArket area to visit my sister snd now my son who attended uOttawa and has c
  • Amy: That sounds fantastic! As with most travelling, parts are much more comfortable when you're telling them afterwards, but they make a good story.
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  • andrea tomkins: Yes! I've seen the boiling water method! I never really bothered with it because I am a lazy baker. :) It is worth finding a recipe that uses less ye
  • Amy: I made a no-knead version that didn't use a Dutch oven (I don't have one and didn't feel like investing in one just for that). You put a small contai

The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

If you'd like to contact me, please use this form. If you're so inclined, you can read more about me here. Thank you for visiting!


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