Do you ever get tired of celebrating holidays the same way every year? Do you ever get tired of holidays in general?
I know I do! That’s why I decided long ago that I wouldn’t resign myself to participating in the same old traditions. I’ve been inventing my own holidays and traditions (like the Thank You Jar) for years—and you can too!
Here are some ideas to get you started and some examples from my life.
1. Bond With Your Friends
I’m really into scrapbooking and making my own cards. One year, my girlfriends and I decided to meet at the local craft store for a full day of scrapbooking. We planned it for mid-January after all the holiday hoopla had settled down. We brought all our paper, photos, adhesive, stickers, and other supplies and camped out for an entire day of girl talk and fun. We even had lunch delivered to the store. Were you too busy with family obligations in December to see your friends? Plan a January get-together to reconnect!
2. Celebrate You
A few years ago, I was feeling bored, so I decided to add up how many days I had been alive including leap year days (what can I say, I had a lot of time on my hands). I was surprised to realize that I was only a few weeks away from reaching my 10,000th day on Earth. I thought that was reason to celebrate, so Chris and I went to one of my favorite places, the Field Museum in Chicago. I spent the day thinking about how great it is to be alive while surrounded by dinosaur skeletons. I’m sitting in a dinosaur footprint in this picture. Do you have a special milestone coming up? You are worth celebrating!
3. Relive Your Childhood
I went to summer camp every year as a kid, and I have fond memories of making friendship bracelets, singing camp songs, and telling ghost stories while roasting s’mores on a campfire. I was SHOCKED to learn that Chris had never been to summer camp. I decided to change that by taking him to “camp” one July. I printed up camp T-shirts, taught him some camp songs (“I said a boom chick a boom!”), taped a paper campfire to the wall, and covered the ceiling with glow-in-the-dark stars. We stayed up late watching Friday the 13th and eating lots of candy. It’s now become a yearly event. What did you love about childhood? Is there anything you missed out on? You’re never too old to be a kid!
4. Take a Break
Museum Day and Movie Day
Sometimes you just gotta take a mental health day. Every summer, Chris and I take a day off from work to go to a museum or to the movies. It’s fun to wander around a nearly deserted museum or to watch a movie at 10:00 am on a Wednesday. We go to a nice restaurant for lunch and enjoy the time together away from the busyness of our jobs. When was the last time you took a personal day? Schedule one now!
5. Be Silly
OK, so most of my holiday ideas are already silly, but this idea came from one of my coworkers. One day, each person in the department brought in a different kind of pie; there were ice cream pies, apple pies, chocolate pies, and everything in between. Then we spent our lunch break eating them all (and falling asleep at our desks that afternoon). I’m still a little fuzzy on why we were celebrating pies. I think President Obama had said in an interview that he liked pies more than cake, so that was reason enough for us. When was the last time you did something silly? You’ll live longer if you make time to have fun!
Have you ever made up your own holiday or tradition?