2013: A Year to Continue Good Habits

When thinking about what I might like to take up as a new years resolution I found myself struggling. I am still eating much healthier than I ever did before, and have lost a large amount of weight since the summer. This can only really continue on track and there’s no point putting more pressure on it when I’m doing well. I don’t smoke, drink and my caffeine intake is the odd sip of Bear’s coke, so there’s nothing much to give up habit-wise.

I have goals, of course, and over the next few months I really want to keep working on them all, but again they are long term, rather than resolution-worthy.

Instead, what came to mind were some of the small things that we often do over the Christmas season, but forget about once the decorations have been put back in boxes. This post will be looking at a few suggestions of things to try and keep in our lives whilst they are still lingering. If you have anything particular you’d like to add, say so in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

Mouse Christmas Design

Generosity/Charity:

I don’t buy gifts anywhere near the amount that shops/adverts/stress-heads tell me I’m meant to. I tend to buy gifts for close family and a few friends, because I know they are the people I can actually buy something personal for. I see no point in buying another box of chocolates/mug/jumper/voucher/insert general gift here which will just clutter up their lives, houses and possibly end up in the bin at some point when they realise they can’t remember who got it for them. However, I really do appreciate the general atmosphere of generosity. When gifts, time and love are given just because you care about someone, the effort is worth it seeing the smile. It’s also where charitable giving can be wonderful; if you hear of a cause, a group, a person that could really do with your help and decide to give, God bless you! Of course we get bombarded with the emotionally blackmailing tear-inducing adverts over Christmas, but in part that’s because they know more people are watching TV, and in part because people can be wonderfully good at this time of year. How about we try and be good to eachother year-round?

Welsh cakes:

This is a silly one but for me it encompasses creative cooking and spending time in your kitchen making delicious beautiful creative things rather than just the meat and two veg that goes on your plate each night. I made possibly the nicest welshcakes ever this Christmas: they were chocolate-chipped and flavoured with orange zest and juice, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, etc which resulted in warm seasonal goodness for all those lucky enough to be around me (I may well put a recipe up soon so you can keep festive smelling goodies flowing through your kitchen!). I also made a number of other things, and had two varieties of Christmas dinner, each which showed the personality of the chef. It was all amazing and I really want to keep the excitement about good (and healthy) food going into the new year.

Family Time:

Yes they can be annoying and tease us, tickle us, throw tantrums, be a thorn in our side and make us scream. On the other hand they are our family, and any one that hangs out with us for long enough will find us annoying too. We rub off eachothers sharp edges, we wrestle and giggle and laugh, we join in with some amazing made-up games, we teach them things, learn from them, and share with them. Christmas for some people is the only time they make an effort. I’m definitely going to try and work on those relationships more this year.

Photography/Mementos:

In my first and second year of university I took hundreds of photographs of friends, of parties, and sometimes just for fun. In my third year that number dropped significantly. Fourth year is barely recognisable from visual evidence. Since then only big events where I felt comfortable and happy enough got a look in. This has made me lose confidence with my camera, but also made me regret not capturing moments which I would’ve loved to share with my children and grandchildren one day. Mementos is another way to keep memories alive, but I hate gathering stuff which gathers dust. I had an idea that each year Bear and I could buy a beautiful tree decoration for Christmas, marking each year. We were already behind by one and hadn’t bought another, but this year two friends gave us tree decorations which I love. One for it’s simplicity, and one because its a robot; who doesn’t like robots! As the next year passes I want to hold my camera close, catch what’s special and remind myself of good times on rainy days.

Sometimes there’s a teletubby in the street.. sometimes there’s not.

Taking Time Out:

Not many people get to take big chunks of holiday from work, not everyone loves the job they do to make that situation better. Even so I think it is important to think and wonder and dream about the future, the past and what we’re doing with our lives. That’s what I like about New Year‘s celebrations, they force people to stop and say “This year was …., next year will be better/busy/great/strange/etc”. By taking time out we are forced to reconsider our lives and balance out what is working with what we want to change. Change can be good.

~*~

I hope you’ve enjoyed my suggestions for what to pull with us into 2013, in general I have an inkling that A LOT is going to change, but we’ll see what life brings. Happy New Year everyone!

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