"The countryside. Never disappoints" - Readers share how they've remained positive over the last 12 months

This Saturday (March 20) marks International Day of Happiness 2021. We all know that the last year hasn’t been particularly great… yet still we’ve persevered and made our way through as best as we can, given the circumstances. We asked our readers to share something that has helped them to remain happy and positive over the last year.

Thursday, 18th March 2021, 4:39 pm

This is what our readers had to say:Pete Cowley puts his positivity and happiness down to; “My wife and all my family and don't forget my Dog Bobby and Billy the tortoise. Keep Safe Every ONE.”

Christine Brooks said; “my daughter n grandkids love em so much”, and Jackie Perrins couldn’t have done it without her; “Family and friends x”

Lavinia Elaine Pass said; “Tranquility at it's best, quality living for a refreshing change, stress levels never been so low, needed muchly” and the same goes for Deb Birchall, who said; “My family and partner.” And, joining in with the family appreciation is Darren Lomas, who said; “My daughter Shannon Lomas and my new born grandson karter Rhys Wilson”

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Perspective has been key part of coping in recent times to Michael Hall, who said; “Realising what's important and what's not.”

Lynda Lyndylou Gill hasn’t stopped smiling since; “the birth of Our first great grandson who's now 4 1/2 months old” — congratulations to you all.

Toni Hancock is appreciating time well spent; “Having extra time with my daughter due to starting nursery 6 months late due to 1st lockdown. We made memories we would never have been able to make. And then watching her grow in confidence since starting in September xx” and Kirsty Jones who said; “Having my first baby would have to say that kept me happy for 12 month tho he’s only 6 week old.” And, that’s not all for the newborns over the last year, like Rosemary Widdop who is ecstatic following; “The birth of my gorgeous great granddaughter", and let’s not forget Laura K Taylor, who is absolutely loving; “Our little lockdown baby, was pregnant 2 weeks into the first lockdown and now he's 8 weeks old” — we’re absolutely delighted for you all.

Kevin Rodgers is really enjoying the little things; “being able to enjoy and finish a jigsaw, getting a 100+ score at Scrabble, my music and Netflix.”

And Dorothy Briggs has enjoyed the pleasures of; “The countryside. Never disappoints. Never lets you down. Can’t be taken away. And it costs nowt” — you simply can’t beat the fresh countryside air Dorothy.

Barbara Sherlock kept it short and sweet, the sole focus of her positivity and reason to smile has been; “Alistair Griffin” — just… awww.

Agata Aga simply wouldn’t want it any other way when she said; “I would say my daughter making me happy and mad reminding me I'm still alive with annoying me.”

Nicola Luff Preece has kept going, all thanks to; “My sister's messages, Jane Tankard luv ya” and Jane replied in kind; “kept us laughing all way through.”

Melanie Walker puts it all into perspective when she said; “Being lucky to live in the countryside. Walks in the open. Fresh air. It’s free (as many things aren't). Sitting on my a**e just makes me feel tired. Getting out gives me motivation and its good for the soul” — couldn’t put it any better ourselves, bask in the ambience of that countryside air Melanie.

A little bit of space goes a long way for David Scothern, who said; “The fact I rarely have to interact with people and their stupidity” — tell us how you really feel, David ;-)

Paul Sims wasted no time in rubbing it in by saying; “Living in New Zealand” — yeah, cheers pal. But seriously, take care out there. But wait, Tommy Woodhouse is also out there now as well. Enjoy chaps.

Rebecca Louise on the otherhand linked all of her happiness to one thing; “Gin” and a theme seems to be developing here (understandably) with Corinne Machin who said; “whiskey and vodka” and Ian Batey has been indulging in his fondness for; “Chantry beer” — I suppose it’s the little things, just go easy on those measures.

Diane Tingle wanted to share some love and appreciation for; “My friend Nichola Salt. We have travelled together for the past year together to work. I couldn't have done it without her” and the love-in continued with Nichola Salt replying; “we got through this together kept each other positive and happy and ready to face the day xx” — love to see it.

Let’s not forget the much loved pets out there, Nadine Ellis alway smiles when she thinks of; “Our 2 fur baby grand babies”, and Paul Sharpe has been appreciating the company of his four-legged companion; “my best lady friend”, and the animal love doesn’t end there with Bert O'bert saying; “My dogs”.

Michael Frank kept it brief, saying; “Going fishing”, as did Natalie Louise Richards who just loves; “Netflix” — a fair few will agree with you there.

Lisa Marie puts her perseverence all down to; “true grit and determination” — gu on luv. Well done! Meanwhile, Aaron McLeish has used his time wisely to begin; “Writing a book” and Anne Smith has loved enjoying; “Over 100 free Facebook Live gigs by this guy… facebook.com/alistairgriffin” — we will send over a receipt for a cut of the advertising commission Anne.

Finally, we’d like to finish with one of the nicest responses we’ve seen all year from Sam Wallace, who responded with; Thank you Star, finally an acknowledgment that some of us have had a good year. My faith has kept me happy and positive over the last twelve months. Also the fact that I’ve been working as normal means I haven’t had the problems some others have had” and it clearly struck a chord with Rachel Stock, “This is really nice to read. As a restaurant owner who's had the year from hell, I'm really happy to read others stories of a good year. We should always be happy for others xx” — it certainly is Rachel, and thank you also Sam. Very much appreciated.