Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Your happy is never too loud...

On New Year's Day, we went to the movies.

We saw "We Bought a Zoo" directed by Cameron Crowe and starring Matt Damon as the dad Benjamin Mee; Scarlett Johansson as Kelly, the young veterinarian at the zoo; Colin Ford as Dylan, his son; and adorable Maggie Elizabeth Jones as Rosie, his daughter.

The movie is based on the true story of Ben buying and moving to the zoo with his children.  His wife died 6 months earlier, his son was struggling, and his daughters love of life and the things around her led him to easily make the decision to take on this new adventure.

Not only did I love the story of how they turned the zoo around and created a new family with the people who worked there but I also hung onto so many of the words.  They stood out to me because they carried a message of hope, one that makes you ask yourself questions such as....are you living the life you want, does your life have purpose, are you getting what you want from it?

In the beginning little Rosie says to her Dad while looking out the window at the neighbors having fun, "Their happy is too loud." 

That really stuck out to me because there is nothing better in life than loud happy.....think about that for a minute.
Later in the movie, Ben and Dylan are talking about life.  Listen to this clip and think about the words that he says.

I love this...."All you need is 20 seconds of insane courage and I promise you something great will come of it."  

Have you ever had anyone tell you that?  What would happen if you took a chance today and did something wild, completely out of the ordinary?

And how about this.....Have you ever told someone else that?
Throughout the movie, Ben talks about his wife and her love for living, for the little things in life.  He tells how she loved flying red kites and....  

blueberry Pop-Tarts.

She loved the little things.

What are the little things that you love?  Have you ever been asked that?  Have you ever asked someone else what little things they love?
I love the little things too.  This movie reminded me that I need to share them with others.

I love seeing my daughter, Brianna, standing in the field talking to her horse forever.
and how she thought it would be fun to get this sock monkey calendar for our house.  Her thought behind it, "Every time I walk by it, I will smile and laugh."  So do I.....sock monkeys are funny.
I love finding illustrations of red headed girls with butterflies and
finding complete happiness in the joy my youngest Hagan had when he wore his pajamas to school on Polar Express day.

I love eating ice cream with Swedish fish, caramel, way too many sprinkles, and whipped cream.  I love listening to music and dancing in the kitchen (and even in the library).  I love getting dirty.  I love coloring.  I love finding old books with my name wrote in the front by my Mom.  I love that she let us write in the front of them too.

I love the smell of fall, pink flowers, Colorado, Monet, coffee, and babies. I love being in new places. I love going to church, and taking walks.

I love being with my family and friends. I love holding my sisters hand and remembering the day we got matching tattoos on our wrists. I love seeing my brother be a Dad to his three little ones.  I love seeing Brianna play horse monopoly with my Dad and hearing laughter fill the room.
I love looking at pictures of my son, Brady.  I love him more than air.

As the students at Van Meter come back to school in a couple of days, I want them to remember that the little things they love and that their voices have meaning.  I wrote quotes on the chalkboard coming into the library today.  I want them to take in these words....
Listen.  Listen to you. Listen to the sounds around you....even if there are none. Just listen.
Be seen....let even one person see who you are and then....
 Really see them.
You are so worth the living that chance holds.

Create your own change.  Be a change.
Love.  Be loved. 
Have a voice.

And always remember.....

Be happy.

Your happy is never too loud.

This is what I will give the people around me when they come back this week.

And remember myself, as we start a new year.


  1. This is a great post Mrs. Miller! I love to read and write posts about things that are questionable, or ones that make you question things about your life, and this one fits that perfectly. Thanks for giving me something else to think about as a new year has just started :)

  2. Thank you, Alissa. It makes me so happy to read what you just wrote to me. If I can give you and all the students something for the new year....it is the ability to embrace all of these things I wrote about. YOU are so worth it and your happy is never, ever too loud. <3, Mrs. Miller

  3. What a wonderful post to start the new year with. Thank you for sharing your long list of little things you love and getting me to think of the little things I love, something that is very easy to forget to do in the utterly overwhelming busy-ness that is my life these days.

    One of the little things I love is having friends who challenge me, who make me think and who help me become more of the person I want to be. I love that you are one of those friends.

    And happy is NEVER too loud (even in a library!).

  4. My family saw the movie also and you put the deeper meaning of the story into an awesome perspective of what is important in life. Thank you, your post is very refreshing