10. open your windows::even on a cold day a little fresh air in the house will make you feel better.
11. better yet, go outside yourself! Walk around the block or even your yard and thank God for your healthy body. If your body is not healthy, then thank God for all the years that it was and for his grace that gets you through each day that it's not.
12. bake something. something good.
13. and then share it. Nothing will make a neighbor or friend happier than seeing A) your smiling face and B) the plate of muffins/cookies/bread in your hands.
14. get off line by 9:00. (pm) Nothing is happening on there that won't be happening tomorrow. Trust me on this. Spend the next hour or two with yourself, your spouse, a good book or asleep.
15. think about Christmas. It's right around the corner and a list/ideas/budget will only make preparations more enjoyable.
16. call your local food bank and see if they need specific things. I was surprised when I called ours and they suggested stuff like foil, saran wrap, napkins and ziploc bags. huh. makes sense, doesn't it? Most of us take that stuff for granted but they become luxuries when you can't even afford to put food on the table.
17. go shopping (preferably with your kids if they need a lesson in generosity like one of mine (in particular) does), get the stuff and drop it off. say a prayer for the family that might come and pick it out.
18. wash your sheets and blankets and hang them outside somewhere. Even draped over patio chairs would work. They will smell heavenly when you put them back on, especially at this time of year.
19. speaking of beds, make yours and make it well. you will thank yourself later.
20. pick out one messy spot/drawer/shelf in your house and clean it. Don't worry about organizing your whole house, just doing one little spot will make you feel better. Count how many times you go and look at it over the next few days. :)
21. log off of facebook/twitter/pinterest for a day (or two). It will be so much more enjoyable when you go back. (I have a twitter account I don't use but can totally vouch that this works for the other two.)
22. print out a favorite picture and frame it. Walgreens & Wal Mart make this so easy to do online and you can usually pick your print up in about an hour. Why do we put this off??? (we meaning me)
23. Call up a friend and meet for coffee/lunch/shopping/walk. Sometimes it seems like so much work to coordinate schedules and kids and naps and life but really, what's better than hanging out with someone you truly like and care about? Not much.
24. don't eat meat for a day. If you have the stomach for it, read about factory farming. think about what you could sacrifice from your grocery list in order to afford healthier/more humane animal products.
25. plan your meals out for the next week/2 weeks/month. If you don't normally do this, I'd start with one week at a time. I normally browse through my recipes (hard copies and online) and fill in a dinner idea for each day, Sunday-Saturday. I then make my grocery list with the recipes right there in front of me, grouping things together on my list by sections of the grocery store I usually shop at. (all dairy together, all produce together, etc.) If I am wondering if I still have that barley in the cupboard I just write barley on my list with a check mark next to it. Next time I'm in the kitchen I double check the barley status and either cross it off or leave it. For me, trying to come up with something for dinner at dinner time is just torturous. I feel so much better when I plan stuff out and have what I need on hand. (and no, I don't always stick to my original daily plan, it's just a good starting point for me.)
26. get up 30 minutes earlier. Quiet time can be hard to come by and I find that a bit of sleepiness is a worthy trade for a hit of the good stuff. (quiet) Use that time to pray, write in a journal, exercise, make your coffee, look out the window...whatever you'd like. It's a gift to yourself so make sure and enjoy it!
27. make something! Have you been neglecting a particular hobby or craft because there is a pile of unfinished projects of that variety in the corner? Who cares! Start another one and just let yourself enjoy the process. (I would suggest doing something on the quick side so you can get that rush of completion. It might spur you on to tackle some of the other stuff sitting there.)
28. stretch. touch toes, raise arms, etc. Your body will thank you.
Holy cats! How's that for a lot of words? I would like to remind you that I am sharing things that make my life happier/better when I do them. I do not do all of this stuff all of the time, okay? But I wish I did. If you are thinking this stuff is pretty basic, that's because it is. I find that the most basic things are the most important to me and my life.