After the last 12 months of COVID crisis, presidential and political craziness, and wacked out weather, I am certain we all deserve a vacation.
So, why is it so hard to commit to a vacation?
For me there are three major factors. 1. Cost 2. Commitment phobia 3. I have too much to do.
All of which are bologna.
1. Taking a break or getting away does not have to cost an arm and a leg.
2. Committing to do something makes it that much more valuable.
3. What am I gonna do with all my to-do’s if I don’t take a break before I have a breakdown?
For others, fear of committing to a vacation is based on things to actually be afraid of such as: medical conditions, occupational duties, pets, hurricanes, and pandemics. With awareness of the need for concern, we also have to acknowledge the need to take a break when we can.
2020 has been a rough year on most of us. A lot of people want to forget the year ever happened, so I thought I’d give the December 2020 Positivity Challenge a crazy spin. Instead of thinking about a New Year’s resolution for January 2021, I challenge you to make an Old Year’s Resolution.
That’s right, an Old Year’s Resolution! I challenge you to set a goal or envision yourself taking on a new skill, talent, or outlook for 2020. For the rest of December work harder on helping the year end on a positive note than you normally do on the usual weight loss or decluttering resolutions of new years past.
Take this Old Year’s Resolution seriously!
Think of what you pictured 2020 looking like. Remember the resolutions or goals you set for yourself and grab onto one of those dreams, goals, or ambitions. Work your darndest to make that objective a reality as you wrap up this craziest of years.
Here are some examples:
For the next 24 days, cut out the sugars and carbs you have always said you should.
For the next 24 days, send a Thank You text or card to someone for whom you are grateful.
For the next 24 days, work out for 25 minutes while you watch your favorite tv show.
The timeline of my 1st grader’s life according to him.
In a recent Social Studies lesson, my son was learning about timelines. The last activity on the page was to make a timeline of events in his life. Of course we began with when he was born. The only other events he chose to include were getting our dog and starting school. When the time came to add 2020, I asked what he wanted to record for current events.
Without a moment’s hesitation, he replied, “Anthony is stuck at home.”
Those five words spoke volumes. They reflected how our current situation has defined this period in our lives. Stuck.
This assignment reminded me of a homework activity my daughter had last fall. She was to interview family members and ask what event they believed defined their generation. Both hubby and I believed that 9/11 was the defining experience for those of our age. My mother-in-law and father-in-law said Vietnam or Korean Wars. Greg’s grandmother said World War II and a tornado that had hit their hometown. It was funny to me how tragedies seemed to determine our identities. Why is it that we don’t typically use the advent of a new invention or success as the center to what we see in ourselves?
This post may make me sound crazier than usual, but it is something I have contemplated for a while now.
Do you have a time of day where you find yourself looking at the clock at the exact same hour and minute each day?
Well, I do.
That time is 12:34.
When I Googled the quandary of looking at the same time every day, there were lots of hits. Most people, it seems, feel the clock is always on 9:11 or 11:11 when they check it. Some believe this is an ominous sign of things to come or possibly an apocalyptic foreshadowing. I’m not sure I believe that to be the case, but, hey, it’s a free world.
Who feels like they are in the midst of a mess right now? A holiday recovery, end-of-year, I-ate-too-many-desserts, what’s-with-this-weather mess?
The holiday meltdown isn’t just for snow, fudge, and small children. We all have the right and inclination to collapse into the most cataclysmic of chaotic mindsets this time of year.
Here’s the good news… the magic is in the mess.
With the heaviest of holiday heaps coming on, eating Dove chocolate is still one of my favorite therapies. As I frantically re-created a lost answer key for my COM 111 final, ithe shiny wrapper of a caramel-filled chocolate provided this golden nugget of peace… the magic is in the mess.
I almost wept at these words. How did that little chocolate know I needed to that mantra in my life?
This morning, as my children are sleeping in, hubby is on the farm, and the end-of-year book work stares me down, I can’t help but hope that this magic mess mantra could become a part of my daily routine.
Why can’t it?
On any given day of any given year, a magician can pull a rabbit from a hat, find the exact card the lovely assistant chose, or a quarter from the unsuspecting ear of a child.
My kids have been dragging home loops of knotted yarn. They spend hours of their day trying to make patterns including: Jacob’s Ladder, teacup, spider web traps, Eiffel Tower, bow and arrow, and other geometric shapes with the yarn between their fingers.
Hours, I tell you!Hours they should be cleaning rooms, doing homework, practicing basketball, or being productive in some way.
The hours of employing imagination and making yarn shapes are really not what get me worked up. It’s the random yarn loops lying around EVERYWHERE and the knock-down-drag-out fights over who has whose “special” yarn loop.
I love pumpkin guts! I love how they feel, how they smell, the seeds that we pull out of them, and the jack-o-lanterns that take form after they are removed. I love pumpkin guts.
In 2016 almost 150 million Americans said carving pumpkins was a part of their Halloween plans. That makes for A LOT of pumpkin gut removal.
While many find the slimy, sticky, and stringy gourd guts to be gross, there are plenty of people out there that enjoy the icky investigation for seeds.
The scraping of the sides can be a stress reliever. When you have your big bowl of pumpkin guts staring you in the face, you can say, “Wow! I cleaned all of those out!”
Once the insides are removed, creating spooky, silly, and sometimes unrecognizable shapes is what turns jack-o-lanterns into joy. Roasting the separated seeds is always a fun and a pretty healthy snack. My kids think the roasted, salty seeds taste like popcorn and those toasted kernels don’t last long at our house. Continue reading “I Love Pumpkin Guts”→
Miniature golf is an activity that is love by millions. The whimsical landscapes and creative challenges posed by the colorful pastime provide families with fun and memories that are anything but mini.
To beat the heat, I took my boys and one of their buddies early last Monday morning to play some put put. They were enthralled. From choosing their ball color to which putter they were going to use, just getting started was a thrill.
My son’s discarded ball and putter found a few holes away from where we were playing. He was too busy with the water hazards.
Each hole of the course offered fun distractions and attractions. While the two six year-olds were eager to compete at getting their balls in the hole first, the four year-old was way more interested in the features surrounding each putting area. I didn’t feel any need to rush. There wasn’t anyone behind us to let play on or anyone in front of us to distract. It was an ideal adventure.
As we made our way around the course, the boys wanted to understand the rules of the game and were fascinated by the aspects of how each hole was designed. They loved trying different techniques for success at each green and were really excited when one or the other made their shot. It was a wonderful experiment in sportsmanship. Continue reading “Miniature Golf Moments – Not so Mini”→
Time is tough to abandon but it sure is nice to let it go sometimes.
Playing in the creek is one of our favorite summer pastimes. Throwing rocks, building bridges, hunting crawdads and tadpoles, fishing, and picking wild flowers are the best ways to forget that there is a life too full of demands waiting beyond those creek banks.
I think my favorite thing about the creek is that it provides us with “rush free” fun. We are able to abandon our watches and phones. We are able to abandon the worries of dishes, laundry, and bill paying. We are able to abandon the stresses of schedules and calendars. We are trying to abandon time.
Rarely does a day pass when my kiddos fail to ask if we can go to the creek. They understand and appreciate the fact that when we are at the creek, they are free to play, work, and dream right along with those currents. The fact that the water, animals, and plants are all there naturally makes it the perfect place for us to play and grow. The fact that the creek never reminds us that we have to be somewhere else is magic.
On our last trip to the creek, my son caught some amazing crawdads. (They were huge!) He put them in a bucket and dutifully added rocks and fresh water to the bucket to make the crawdads happy. When it was time to leave, he cried. Oh, how he cried! He did not want to release the crawdads. Continue reading “Abandoning Time”→