6 Simple Ways to
January can be a bit of a blah month, can’t it? Once the New Year’s celebrating has come and gone and all the holiday decorations are back in their bins, things can become a bit gray. So here’s what we are going to do to put some fun back into the first month of 2022! (Cue confetti cannon.)
We are going to celebrate one (or all, if you’re feeling ambitious) of these six holidays in January…from the socially responsible to the quirky! There are many, many more celebrations to choose from, of course, but these were the ones that spoke to me this year.
In order to take some of the work out of it for you, I’m including a few simple ways you can implement each day in your own world. (Don’t overthink it!) So grab your planner and put on your party hat!
January is Blood Donor Month
A super easy way to celebrate this month is to donate blood. You might think this is an odd sort of celebration, but providing life-saving blood for others is a real privilege! What other time can you actually say you helped save a life? And according to the Red Cross, blood supplies have dipped dangerously low right now.
It took me a long time to get past my anxiety about needles to donate blood. But once I did, easy peasy! So if I can do it, anyone can.
Per the Red Cross, you are eligible to donate if you have received COVID vaccine (bring your vaccination card to make it simple). Obviously you should reschedule your appointment if you are not feeling well, for any reason.
Clear up the myths around who is and isn’t eligible to donate blood by watching this one minute video.
Learn more about how blood types and transfusions work on this interactive page.
To find the nearest blood drive or donation center, Google “donating blood near me”.
National Houseplant Day
Monday, January 10th
I love all of my houseplants! They bring me a lot of joy. I know starting out with plants can be a bit overwhelming, but they are worth the learning curve! Here are five ways to celebrate this fantastic holiday:
1. Educate yourself. I know plant names can be intimidating. And the plants look totally different in person! But grab a book for beginners and get started. Here is my favorite.
2. Visit a local nursery. Browsing a local nursery is a much better experience than the local home improvement store! They will have a great selection and the staff should be happy to answer any questions. you may have.
3. Get some new plants! Here are some easy ones to start. There are sizes and varieties to suit any home and any budget.
4. Name your plants. Laugh if you want to, but this really becomes helpful once you collect more than a few! (When was the last time I watered Spidy?)
5. Upgrade your plant supplies. The pots, watering cans, plant hangers, oh my! The options are endless.
6. Give your plants some TLC. If you are already a Plant Parent, use this holiday as an opportunity to give your plants some extra attention. Dust their leaves, give them a good soaking, spray for pests or treat them to a little fertilizer.
Cuckoo Dancing Week
Cuckoo Dancing Week is such a sweet celebration focused on remembering the the comedy of Laurel and Hardy.
1. Celebrate by reading a short history of their partnership.
2. Watch Stan & Ollie, the movie released in 2018 starring Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly.
3. Learn their signature dance! This video clip is definitely worth a watch.
National Gluten-Free Day
Wednesday, January 13th
Gluten-free has become a such booming industry, it even has it’s own holiday! Here are a few ways to observe this quirky celebration. This one’s for you, Shawna.♥
1. Educate yourself about what gluten actually is. The simple version, a more detailed explanation, or by watching this short video. For additional resources, check out the National Celiac Association.
2. If you think you might have a gluten sensitivity, make an appointment with your doctor to be tested!
3. Explore all the delicious gluten-free recipes and foods out there. Even if you yourself aren’t gluten sensitive, likely you have a friend that is. The next time your gluten-free friend comes to visit, you will be prepared with a gluten-free meal. (Be sure to ask your friend if you are questioning whether a food is gluten-free or not.)
National Blonde Brownie Day
Saturday, January 22nd
Blondes definitely have more fun. Blonde brownies, that is! If you are a brownie lover (who isn’t?) then you need to add this delicious desert to your baking repertoire STAT. I’m not much of a baker, but these I learned real quick how to make, if that tells you anything. I still don’t make them as well as my friend Rachael, but her recipe is perfect, IMO.
1. Which came first? Blondies or brownies?
2. Make a pan of your own delicious blonde brownies. Try Rachael’s Chocolate Chip Blonde Brownies (you won’t be sorry!)
3. Share some blonde brownies with to a friend or neighbor.
National Puzzle Day
Saturday, January 29th
When you hear that Jan 29th is National Puzzle Day, what sort of puzzle comes to mind? I think immediately of jigsaw puzzles, of which I am fond of and very particular about. (500 pieces only. No photos, only illustrations.) But there are many other types of puzzles. Did you think of something else altogether?!
Here are some fun ways to get your puzzle on!
1. Explore the different categories of puzzles.
2. Grab a puzzle book from the store and try your hand at Sudoku, Crosswords or Word Search.
3. Work on a jigsaw puzzle (My List of Favorites!)
4. Create your own custom jigsaw puzzle online with a personal photo or artwork.
Start 2022 off with a cheer…
It can be challenging to make room for a little celebration in our lives. Daily responsibilities keep coming at us like fast balls zinged out of a pitching machine. It’s easy to forget and all of a sudden it’s December again.
This year start now. Make room for a little more fun in your daily life. It doesn’t have to be complicated or elaborate. It can be as simple as getting out a jigsaw puzzle. But it can make the dailiness of your life so much richer and memorable. For you and for your people. Don’t let the days get away.