Tag Archives: quotations

Each Year, the Anniversary of September 11 Reminds Me of This Broadcast by Winston Churchill.

For me, and for everyone in New York City, and for the world, the day of September 11 stands out from the rest of the year.

And each year,  I remember how back in 2001, just a month after the terrible events had occurred, I was doing research for my biography of Winston Churchill,  Forty Ways to Look at Winston Churchill, and was reading some speeches Churchill gave during the early years of the war.

And I noticed that it was on September 11, 1940, that Churchill gave one of his most memorable broadcasts — about the “Blitz,” the brutal nightly bombing of London.

Churchill’s words seemed to have been written for our own circumstances.

These cruel, wanton, indiscriminate bombings of London are, of course, a part of Hitler’s invasion plans. He hopes, by killing large numbers of civilians, and women and children, that he will terrorise and cow the people of this mighty imperial city, and make them a burden and anxiety to the Government…Little does he know the spirit of the British nation, or the tough fibre of the Londoners…who have been bred to value freedom far above their lives. This wicked man, the repository and embodiment of many forms of soul-destroying hatreds, this monstrous product of former wrongs and shame, has now resolved to try to break our famous Island race by a process of indiscriminate slaughter and destruction. What he has done is to kindle a fire in British hearts, here and all over the world, which will glow long after all traces of the conflagration he has caused in London have been removed.

One of the most striking things about New York City in the period after the attack on the World Trade Center was that, despite the shock and devastation, there was a tremendous mood of morale, determination, and fellow feeling.

If you want to listen to Churchill give his broadcast, you can listen here. The section I quote above begins at 7:43.

For me, the anniversary of September 11 also reminds me to reflect on the values of the United States, and to challenge myself to live up to those values in my own life.

Inspiring Quotes and Readings for Weddings about Marriage and Love

In episode  76 of our podcast Happier with Gretchen Rubin, Elizabeth and I talked about a question from listener Sarah — she asked for ideas for good wedding readings.

We asked listeners for their suggestions, and we received so many terrific ones. So many, in fact, that we couldn’t possibly have read them during the podcast.

So I decided to create a PDF of some of the outstanding choices.

If you’d like to get your copy of the suggestions for wedding readings, just click here to get the PDF now. 

I included the readings from my own wedding — they’re marked with an asterisk. If you want to hear me read “I Was Trying to Describe You to Someone,” the very short Richard Brautigan story that was read at my wedding, you can hear me read it here. How I love that story.

Elizabeth doesn’t remember what was read at her wedding! She was in a crazy period at work, and my mother did almost all the planning for the wedding, and Elizabeth and Adam picked their readings so close to the actual day, that now none of us remember.

It was so much fun to read people’s submissions. If you have a quotation you’d like to add, write it in the comments below. People really love to see what other people have used for wedding readings.

Click here to get the Wedding Readings PDF now

A Little Happier: Ray Bradbury Says, “Love What YOU Love!”

I have to say, I love this postcard from science-fiction legend Ray Bradbury so much, it makes me choke up every time I look at it. I’d love to have it as a giant poster hanging on my office wall.

Because so much of what I’ve learned about happiness, habits, human nature, everything, comes down to that same point: acknowledge who I am.

Be Gretchen.

Just because something’s fun for someone else doesn’t mean that it’s fun for me — and vice versa.

The strategy that works for someone else may be the opposite of what works for me. I’m an Abstainer; others are Moderators. I’m a morning person; others are night people. I’m an Upholder, but very few people are Upholders.

In The Happiness Project and Happier at Home, I write about how I used to ignore my love of children’s literature, and now it’s a huge element of my life.  I want to love what I love!

Have you ever loved something that other people thought was dumb, shallow, a waste of time?  Were you tempted to renounce or ignore it?

If you’re curious about Ray Bradbury’s books, I recommend The Martian Chronicles or 100 of His Most Celebrated Tales.

As I mention, if you want to get the  Moment of Happiness newsletter, where I email you a quote about happiness or human nature every morning, sign up here. I love gathering and sharing quotations.

Want to get in touch? I love hearing from listeners:

 

Happier listening!

Podcast 79: Revive a Dormant Friendship, a Selection of Yearbook Quotes, and a Gold Star for Making Phone Calls.

It’s time for the next installment of  “Happier with Gretchen Rubin.

Update: It’s almost September, and for many of us, September is the other January. If you get a clean slate, start-over feeling in September, check out my book Happier at Home. I spend a school year — from September though May — going deep into the project of becoming happier at home. If you’re not happy at home, it’s hard to be happy.

Try This at Home: Revive a dormant friendship.

I promised to post a photo of Elizabeth’s Smith and Noble window treatments, but Elizabeth decided that her house just looks too torn up — she doesn’t want to send a photo yet! The window treatments are the only thing accomplished at this point.

Happiness Hack: Todd asks, “Our household receives a lot of reading material in the mail, but we never know when everyone’s done reading something, so don’t know when to throw things away. Any ideas?”

Deep Dive: In episode 74, we suggested the Try This at Home of “Pick a quotation for your senior yearbook page.” Listeners sent in their choices — so many great ones.

Listener Question:  Jenny asks, “Can an Abstainer indulge in chocolate, in moderation?” Jenny is asking about the Abstainer vs. Moderator distinction — and here’s a post about planned exceptions.

Elizabeth’s Demerit: Elizabeth has fallen behind on her pledge on GoodReads to read 75 books this year. If you want to work on the habit of reading more, you can get my one-page “Reading Better Than Before” guide here.

Gretchen’s Gold Star: I managed to make some phone calls.

Remember,  I’m doing weekly live videos on my Facebook Page about the podcast. To join the conversation, check the schedule. Tune in this Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. Eastern.

And if you want to take the Four Tendencies quiz, to find out if you’re an Upholder, Questioner, Obliger, or Rebel, it’s here.

As always, thanks to our terrific sponsors

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Also check out Smith and Noble, the solution for beautiful window treatments. Go to smithandnoble.com/happier for 25% off window treatments and a free in-home design consultation.

And don’t forget to check out Trunk Club. Get hand-picked outfits shipped right to your door–chosen by your very own personal stylist. Go to TrunkClub.com/happier to learn more.

1pixHappier with Gretchen Rubin - Podcast #79

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A Little Happier: Sisters Nora and Delia Ephron, and the Intimacy of “I’ll Take Food from Your Fridge.”

I’m a big fan of Nora Ephron’s movies and books (books like Heartburn, Crazy Salad and Scribble Scribble, I Feel Bad about My Neck; movies like When Harry Met, Sleepless in Seattle). In fact, I just recommended Heartburn for my monthly book club (you can sign up for the book club here).

I was re-reading that novel, to learn from it as a writer, because that kind of light, funny, flowing writing is extremely hard to pull off. How does she do it?

I’m also a big fan of the work of her sister, Delia Ephron. I loved her wonderful book of essays, Sister Mother Husband Dog: (Etc.).  The story I tell is something from the essay she wrote about her sister Nora — about the nature of intimacy.

If you want to hear more from Delia Ephron, here’s a post I wrote inspired by the essay “Bakeries” in the same collection: “Discardia,” or How One Moderator Manages to Indulge Moderately. All about the Abstainer/Moderator split.

 

Want to get in touch? I love hearing from listeners:

 

Happier listening!