Tag: gratitude

July 1, 2018: Little Merry Sunshine's 11th anniversary

July 1, 2018: Little Merry Sunshine's 11th anniversary
Today is the 11th anniversary of the day I began writing Little Merry Sunshine. Eleven years ago, I thought blogging was going to be a fun, new hobby, but didn’t think I’d really have any fans or regular readers. I also didn’t think I’d still be blogging 11 years later, but I am.  Go figure.... Read more »

Mister Rogers is the neighbor we still need

Mister Rogers is the neighbor we still need
I cried seeing the trailer for Won’t You Be My Neighbor? in the theater a couple of months ago, so I knew I’d be emotional when I saw the documentary. I had no idea what I was in for though. I loved Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood when I was a kid. To say he was my one... Read more »

Blogging isn't sexy, but I love it and ChicagoNow is my home

Blogging isn't sexy, but I love it and ChicagoNow is my home
I began blogging on July 1, 2007 on Blogger because I wanted to create a place on the internet that celebrated what was good in life and I was curious whether anyone would read the randomness that stumbles out of my brain. Even in the halcyon days of 2007, social media and, more generally, the... Read more »
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My memories of Orbit Skate Center will roll with me forever

My memories of Orbit Skate Center will roll with me forever
When I learned in February that Orbit Skate Center would close permanently on March 31, I knew I had to lace up a pair of rental roller skates and roll around their rink one last time. I learned to roller skate on my sidewalk with my BFF Mary when I was five. My first pair of skates... Read more »

My top 10 favorite experiences of 2016

#1 The year began with the Totally Fabulous Jessica party thrown by Tim and <a href="http://www.norpieswalltowall.com">Michael</a>. Yes, it was simply a party to celebrate ME! Joining in on the fun were Christopher, Wendy and Geoff, and <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/organizing-with-erin">Erin</a>. Thank you all for spending an evening honoring me! Y'all have no idea how the memory of this evening carried me through some dark moments this year.
As 2016 quickly draws to a close, I need to stop and reflect upon the joy I felt this year. In fact, especially this year. By just about every measure, 2016 was a difficult year for many people. Generation X lost many of our pop culture idols; a presidential election went wonky at the last... Read more »

My next chapter is at Bernie's Book Bank

My next chapter is at Bernie's Book Bank
After a long and winding search, I have officially begun the next chapter of my life as the new Event Manager at Bernie’s Book Bank in Lake Bluff. If you’re not familiar with Bernie’s Book Bank, its mission is to “collect, process, and distribute new and gently used children’s books to significantly increase book ownership among at-risk... Read more »
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Full Moon Restaurant: Where everyone receives a free Thanksgiving dinner

Full Moon Restaurant: Where everyone receives a free Thanksgiving dinner
Do you dine at the Full Moon Restaurant? I first discovered the Full Moon as a first year student at Lake Forest College in 1989 when an upperclassman friend introduced me to this wonderful 24-hour truck stop just north of campus. Since that time, the Full Moon has been my second favorite restaurant. Second only... Read more »

September 11 Gratitude and Memories

We all remember where we were on September 11 and I’m no exception. I’ve written about my experiences of September 11th twice – in 2009 and 2011 – and you can click on those links and read my story. While there are many things I wish to forget about September 11th and the wars that we entered as... Read more »

July 25, 2015: The day the Cubs No-Hit Streak died

As a lifelong Cubs fan, I’ve had very little to get excited about over the past 44 years. Yes, there have been some exciting playoff runs in the past four decades, but they all ended in heartache and “wait til next year.” We had one record, however, that we could take incredible pride in because... Read more »
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I received a Pay It Forward and it FREAKED ME OUT

I received a Pay It Forward and it FREAKED ME OUT
We’re all familiar with the idea of “pay it forward” where one person performs a random act of kindness for another person with the hope that the recipient will be inspired to “pay it forward” and perform a random act of kindness for someone else in the future. We may have seen the movie, probably... Read more »
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    Jessica Gardner

    A native of Chicago's Northwest Suburbs and resident of the North Shore, Little Merry Sunshine comes by her name honestly. The story goes that as a child, she was always so happy that she even slept with a smile on her face. Her mom nicknamed her Little Merry Sunshine. It stuck, along with her insatiable desire to focus on the good in the world and to leave it a little better than she found it. She does this by sharing her passions and dreams, what inspires her, and maybe you too, and furthering the discussion about how we can listen to our better angels. You can reach her at LittleMerrySunshineCN[at]WowWay[dot]com.

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