A Sweet Escape


You may look at your car as a way to get from Point A to Point B, or as a gas guzzler, or even as a favored possession you’re thrilled to tool around in. My car isn’t anything fancy; it’s got over a hundred thousand miles on it, has a faint, spoiled milk scent from baby years gone by, and isn’t the least bit feminine. I live in the northeast and feminine-looking cars don’t help much on winter roads. We also wouldn’t be able to afford getaways if we spent our money on little numbers like the one shown above. Yet my car, when I have the luxury of being in the driver’s seat with no passengers to transport, can be a vehicle for my own little, sweet escape.

This summer has been extraordinarily busy, and it was a rare occasion the other day when I found myself driving somewhere alone. Ahhhh. I turned up the volume of my favorite radio station and began to sing. A few songs later, my voice was warmed up. Well, as warmed up as my voice could be. Let’s just say kids have been known to cover their ears when I belt out “Happy Birthday.” Anyway, I was relaxed and the knots in my neck had begun to loosen. That’s when Natasha Bedingfield’s 2008 pop hit, “Pocket Full of Sunshine,” shot over the airwaves. My day was perfect.

Singing along, images flit through my mind and emotions swell. Music does that, doesn’t it? I think of my children and my hopes for their future. I think of my losses and how my wonderful friends and staying positive got me through the grief. I think of mean people I’ve encountered, secure in the knowledge their cruelty has only made me stronger and more compassionate. I think, too, of my husband’s love, our relationship keeping me entertained and completely head-over-heels crazy for him 90% of the time (Nobody’s perfect, right?). Threaded through all these random thoughts and feelings is a newfound contentment with who I am and where I’m going in life.

I smile up to the sky, I know I’ll be alright

This song lifts my spirits at the literal level, too. Sunshine reminds me of my favorite season, days at the beach, backyard pool parties, and tropical vacations.

As the song ends, I’m struck by how this could be my blog’s anthem. You see, I like to think of my posts as moments of happiness I’ve bottled up to share with you. In turn, you can hold that happiness close to your heart, your own little pocket full of sunshine. Corny, yes, but that’s me. I hope you have a wonderful week! Please don’t hate me too much for putting that tune back into your head.

What song lifts you up and fills your soul?

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21 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Gwen Hernandez
    Aug 22, 2011 @ 10:10:57

    It’s nice when we can find escape in the ordinary places we move in every day. Natasha Bedingfield seems to have a knack for catchy, uplifting songs. I’ve always liked Walking on Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves, and lately Hello by Martin Solveig makes me smile, but for uplifting lyrics, I’d have to go with Firework by Katy Perry. 🙂

  2. laurahartson
    Aug 22, 2011 @ 10:24:21

    i love a bit of benny and the jets by elton john!

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Aug 22, 2011 @ 16:14:06

      So nice to see you here, Laura.Elton John brings back fond memories of my high school years. Another winner! It was featured in 27 DRESSES, I believe. 🙂

  3. Nicole Basaraba
    Aug 22, 2011 @ 13:11:53

    LOVE it! I miss hearing Natasha Beddingfield, she has like happiest songs ever. I used to crank up the radio and sing my lungs out to her song “unwritten”. I’m playing it on Youtube as I type this. You’ve made an excellent choice for a blog theme song. Goes perfect with the sunny background color.

  4. pj sharon
    Aug 23, 2011 @ 09:15:11

    Beautifully written, Jolyse. I have too many songs to pick just one. Keep up the sunny disposition of your blogs. We all need a little sunshine! Corny or not.

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Aug 23, 2011 @ 09:33:48

      Hi PJ! Music is such a gift. I wish I were more talented in that area. But like you, I can appreciate all types of songs, reflecting different parts of my personality.

      Thanks for sharing. You made my morning sunnier with your visit. 🙂

  5. jayne ormerod
    Aug 23, 2011 @ 09:34:42

    Songs are the threads that sew our lives together. I can hear a certain song (okay, my age is going to show here) like “I think I Love You” by the Patridge Family and I am imeediately thrown back to the living room where I grew up where my friends and I pretened we were The Partridge Family. Or I hear Born to Run by Bruce Sprinsteen and I am immediately trasnported back to my bedroom where I ws listening to records when I was supposed to be studying Algebra. Or Sweet Home, Alabama for my carefree college days. “Walking on Sunshine” for my young adult years, etc. But right now if I had a theme song for my blog (or even my life) it would be a Zach Brown Band song. Love the lyrics, “Toes in the water, a** in the sand, not a worry in the world a cold beer in my hand. Life is good today. Life is good today.”

    (Okay, now I’m going to be singing it in my head all day!)

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Aug 23, 2011 @ 09:39:36

      Hi Jayne,

      You’re so right. Music reflects moments in our lives, triggering memories each time we hear a particular song or artist. I like the lyrics of your blog theme song and I’m eager to take a listen myself.

      Keep singing!

  6. Dawn Berkoski
    Aug 23, 2011 @ 13:10:03

    I don’t know if I have a theme song, but recently I love playing “Serenade to the Stars” by the Steve Miller Band. One of my favorite lines:
    “The sun comes up and it shines all around you.” Link to video. 🙂

  7. Catie Rhodes
    Aug 24, 2011 @ 18:14:09

    Ramble On by Led Zeppelin always makes me grin. My anthem, though, is “Midnight Rider” by the Allman Brothers Band. Everybody in my family is under strict orders to play this at my funeral, because it’s…my anthem.

  8. Julie Glover
    Aug 25, 2011 @ 11:13:37

    The first makes-me-smile song that came to mind was Life Goes On by the Beatles. Much of the Beatles music makes me smile. Ain’t That a Kick in the Head by Dean Martin, Waterloo by ABBA, Power of Love by Huey Lewis and the News, Closer to the Heart by Rush, and so on and so on. I don’t think I have an anthem. What will they play at my funeral? Oh wait, I love that song “Hey, Julie” by Fountains of Wayne. Maybe that’s it!

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Aug 25, 2011 @ 18:23:34

      Hi Julie,

      I hadn’t thought about my funeral anthem. I’d have to think about that one! All great songs, and I’m humming Waterloo now, thanks to you. 🙂

  9. oldhwysixwest
    Aug 25, 2011 @ 13:08:46

    Shambala by 3 Dog Night is a good pick me up. It’s right after kids’ favorite Jeremiah was a Bullfrog on their greatest hits album. We all sing along when those come on!

  10. Donna Velleman
    Aug 26, 2011 @ 00:33:13

    Sorry to be late on this – trying to catch up. : )
    Catie, I love the Midnight Rider. Great choice. I don’t really have an anthem but I do like Jimi Hendrix’s If 6 was 9. That one usually gives me a boost.

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Aug 26, 2011 @ 15:38:26

      Hi Donna! Great to see you here. Hope you had a wonderful time at your Mom’s birthday shindig. Thanks for sharing your favorite tune that inspires you.

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