Amanda

Daily Resolution: Think About Winter

The Winter Solstice marks the shortest day of the year, but has been traditionally commemorated in a variety of ways by different cultures throughout the world for centuries. The burning of the Yule log, the masked parading of mummers, and even sacrifice in ancient days have been part of the seasonal rituals. Find your own way to celebrate the official change in season from autumn to winter by starting your own tradition. Bake a batch of cookies, have a hot chocolate party, or grab a blanket and cozy up with someone in front of a fire as you toast to “Old Man Winter.”

Daily Resolution: Press Play

Customize a  “play list” for you or your family. Before you start an internet hunt for classic tunes, check with others who may have a trove of medleys you could borrow to create your own compilation. Fill the room and set the mood. There are also many free radio venues that can be accessed through the internet which categorize holiday music if your particular tastes run in a specific genre like classics, children’s songs, jazzy, gospel, etc.

Daily Resolution: Watch Some Classic Movies

Make some time to watch a classic movie with friends or family. For example, during the holidays, some list toppers include: “A Christmas Story,” “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “The Bells of St. Mary’s,” “Prancer,” and “Elf”. Get a television schedule to see what is playing and plan for a popcorn night. Many of these annual favorites can also be found in local stores, online, or can be rented. Already have your own copy? Dust it off and take a stroll with Jimmy Stewart through Bedford Falls, sing a song with Bing Crosby, or appreciate the innocence of Buddy the Elf…just don’t shoot your eye out, kid!

Daily Resolution: Share a Story

With the growing popularity of e-readers, electronic books have prompted even more dust on our bookshelf volumes of literature. Whether you have joined the e-text generation or not, there is still something to be said for a hard copy book, and they offer something personal when they are inscribed for a special person with a thoughtful message and dated. Choose a book from your own collection or get one from a secondhand bookstore that is one of your favorite titles. Inscribe it, date it, sign, give it. The story it tells will outlast any e-text.

Daily Resolution: Give Yourself an Adult Fieldtrip

Cultural activities are often as close as our own backyard. Museums, theaters, and music venues are more accessible than we may realize; you do not have to go to the “big city” to find some fabulous exhibits or performances. Check out what your local community has to offer. Even if you live in a rural area, you may be able to get inexpensive tickets to the local high school’s production of “Grease,” or take in a local music talent at a nearby restaurant. An art gallery might be poised and ready to welcome you with artwork by someone you know!

Daily Resolution: Cash in Your Calendar

One product that will never go out of style is the calendar.  While our “electronic secretaries” might track our appointments and meetings in cyberspace or on screen, there is still an affinity for the pin-up calendars (the kind that have a large image with the dates below it). Our calendars make bold statements about who we are. They are displayed proudly where others can see them, and then when the year is over we discard them. Stretch the year a little longer: Frame a few in a series, display on your refrigerator, put them up in a locker. Don’t have one? Watch for sales at the end of January and get yourself one! You can find everything from country landscapes to cuisine to puppies to Elvis!

Daily Resolution: Bring the Outdoors Indoors

Winter months can create depression and laziness so it is important to recognize when you need a pick me up. Indoor batting cages can provide a winter outlet for energy-charged children or even stressed out adults especially if you live in areas where the winter weather hampers outdoor activities. There are also many cities that now have trampoline gyms (SkyZone is one example) for hours of jumping. Some of them cater to companies who can bring in their employees for a private session…but leave your shoes and laptops at work.

Daily Resolution: Save a Life in Sixty Seconds

Spend 60 seconds today convincing a friend or family member to quit smoking. You say YOU smoke? Then spend 60 seconds explaining to someone else why you have not quit. The CDC reports that nearly 70% of adult smokers WANT to quit. That could be a tremendous success story for even a small percentage of those people if more of us took the time to support someone who is struggling with tobacco addiction. Sixty seconds alone might not be enough, but 60 seconds a day of informational nagging might decrease someone’s impulse to light up. It is worth a minute of your time.

Daily Resolution: Learn More About Traditions

How many candles are on a menorah? What are the 12 days of Christmas? What is the origin of Kwanzaa? Find out about December traditions that are different from your own. Initiate a conversation with children and share what you know about the traditions of other cultures. Prompt them to share what they know with you. Sharing the “spirit of the season” is what this time of year is all about no matter how you celebrate it.

Daily Resolution: Step Out of Line

There are frequently jaw-dropping statistics on the news and on websites about how much time the average person spends on seemingly innocuous and unproductive activities over the course of a lifetime. One that stands out is how people spend approximately 5 years of their life standing in lines! And even though people have become more skilled at multi-tasking during times like this, sometimes there just is not much else one can do but stand and wait. Today, think about ways to avoid standing in lines in the course of your weekly activities. Change your routines to do things on a different schedule. Get up and do your grocery shopping at 7am on a Sunday morning (the roads will be clear too!). Do more general shopping online. Make yourself a coffee at home instead of queuing up at the local Quick-Stop at 8am when everyone else is there too.

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