Nicole and dad

In 2012, a young woman lost her father to colon cancer. He was 57. She was 22.

Grief kept no distance and robbed her, entirely, of joy. Years later, she wondered how she could find what she no longer possessed, and started asking friends (and perfect strangers) one simple question: "What comes to mind when you think of the word joy?" 

The answers were poignant, meandering, abstract, funny, delightful and terribly sad, but through them she started to piece herself back together. Joy was all she thought about. Joy was all she talked about. And soon, joy was all she saw around her. As a by-product of scouting joy, she began to embody it.

So. You may be wondering who, exactly, is The Joy Scout? Well, it could be anyone.

The Joy Scout is someone who is in-tune with her surroundings.

He is alert while walking, and his pace is slow.

She pays attention to people whose stories are overlooked.

She paints what pulls at her.

He greets life with a sense of wonder. And humor. And purpose.

She is astonished--not by grandeur or extravagance, but by the sheer coincidences that, coincidentally, keep unfolding before her very eyes.

She writes about such happenstance.

He listens with full attention.

She looks for the good, the charitable, the beautiful and the resilient in run-down neighborhoods.

He photographs what delights him.

Unafraid to spread her light, she tells about what moves her.

He doodles, or sketches, or writes, or sculpts, or make models, or codes, or transcribes his worldview into song.

Without a doubt, The Joy Scout is a scribe of her surroundings--and this is the corner of the Internet where she catalogs her devotion to seeking and cultivating joy. Thanks for dropping by, come back anytime.