Can't live with them [stuck to each of your ten fingers].
Can't live without them.
Well, you probably can live without them, but why would you?
MAN, OH MAN, THEY'RE COOL!
The other night, one of the women at our craft group arrived bearing a box of Cheezels. She was rather sheepish about her contribution to the evening's nibbles, but my heart leapt for joy. I hadn't eaten a Cheezel in years. I could barely wait to stick one onto each of my fingers then slowly munch them off.
Now don't roll your eyes and scoff at my poor manners. You know you would have done the same!
I poked Cheezels and nibbled and giggled like a six-year-old at a birthday party getting loopy on red cordial.
The Cheezels were delicious.
And incredibly uplifting.
And I found myself thinking, 'I need more Cheezels in my life.'
Which led me to thinking about the quirky little things that bring an inordinate about of joy to my life.
What to know what they are?
Well, I'm gonna tell you anyway...
Little jars of jam
The ones you get with breakfast at fancy hotels.
Forget the chef who does eggs to order - fried, boiled, poached, made into an omelette with smoked salmon and Madagascan chives.
Forget the freshly extracted apple, peach and celery juice.
You can even forget the Belgian waffles with chocolate fudge and King Island cream
The real thrill is in the little jars of jam. They're so cute and ... LITTLE!
They look like something that Gulliver might have brought back from Lilliput, or something you'd bring along to the Teddy Bear's Picinc.
I ADORE a little jar of jam.
Especially if it's blackberry.
Two of my friends, Wendy and Sue, write letters in beautiful cursive writing that makes my heart sing.
One of these letters is instantly valuable because it's from a dear friend. But it's made even more special because the handwriting is so beautifully formed and has been done just for me. Even the words have been chosen just for me. It hasn't been printed off and sent to all of their friends and acquaintances. Each letter is a handmade gift created with love!
I love fancy soap.
The flowery smelling stuff that comes in thick decorative paper ...
The daggy white soaps that come in an assortment of shapes - a rabbit, a rose, a sea shell, a love heart ...
The solid earthy cubes that look like they've been raked through the mud and had a bumble bee or an olive branch stamped on one side ...
They're all the duck's guts.
I don't sit the special soap aside and keep it for good - whatever that means. No way! I use it and feel rich and decadent and pampered.
Nothing says 'luxury' like a white rabbit soap disappearing down the drain in a froth of sudsy bubbles while a Besser block of olive-green soap is waiting in the wings.
Wooden cotton reels
I cannot explain this.
A wooden cotton reel sends me into spasms of delight. I coo and gush as though I'm standing in a pet shop, staring at a fat puppy.
Likewise, triangular blue-coloured cards full of press-studs.
Is it something from my childhood? My mum did sew a lot. Then again, she used to do pottery and I don't react in the same way to clay goblets glazed in dodgy jade tones with a Pisa-like lean to them.
Who knows? Anyone else share my passion for wooden cotton reels?
And last but not least ...
I'm a coffee drinker on the whole but I still like a good tea cosy. Sometimes I brew a cup's worth of peppermint tea in a pot just so I can use a cosy.
This one I can explain. My granny always drank tea and she always had a tea cosy over the pot. Even though she lived in northern NSW where the temperature barely ever dropped below twenty degrees and the tea was drunk in a jiffy.
The best were the owl tea cosies. I still have the last one she made for me - purple and maroon with boggly eyes and a wooden bead for the beak. It's hideous and beautiful and kitsch and classy all at the same time.
When it comes to tea cosies, more is more. Forget minimalism and demure colours. Go for broke. Crochet that extra flower for the top of the cosy. Whack the purple owl over the pale blue Royal Doulton teapot. Tea cosies rule!
So there you have it - the things that bring an inordinate amount of joy to my life, the things I need more of in my life.
You can keep your fancy-pants caviar, your diamond rings and your five star hotels (unless they serve little jars of jam at breakfast!).
I want Cheezels and tea cosies, wooden cotton reels and handwritten letters, tiny jars of jam and rabbit-shaped soap.
What are the simple pleasures missing from your life?