• The Hopefulist

Keep looking forward

We are a more than halfway through February, you know, when time stands still. The days of winter seem to last so much longer than the rest of the year. Unless you have a fabulous vacation planned we still have a way to go before the weather gets warmer and we can really take advantage of being outside. The time to indulge in some outside activities still seems a long way off even though we have been blessed here at the Jersey Shore with a mild winter so far (knock on wood). There are times when the sun is shining just right into the house or onto our enclosed porch and it reminds me that the best of the year is ahead of us. There is so much to look forward to. That should be your focus right now.

I'm not saying you shouldn't be enjoying your days and weeks right now but I'm sure the best is yet to come, for me anyway. I thrive in the warm weather. I love to be outside. I love doing outside activities. I love to sit and read in the sun or just hang on the deck and watch the boats go by my house (since I still don't have one)! There are things to enjoy in the here and now that we can take advantage of but, in my opinion, the best is yet to come. This is a great time to do some binge watching and not even feel guilty about it. I mean, what else is there to do? Unless you like winter sports and really, I never got those people! Stay outside in the cold, on purpose?!?! Sounds crazy to me, but whatever floats your boat. Ohh, boats! Anyway, we have been discovering some new series and the entertainment abounds. I've also been catching up on some movies and of course, doing a lot of reading which I do at all times of the year.

I also try to get together with friends or attend some gatherings. These are things that can put a little shot into your winter doldrums. I met a friend for coffee yesterday on Long Beach Island. And as I was driving over the bridge, the sun was shining down, the water looked amazing and it reminded me that spring and summer is on the way. In the meantime, coffee! I met with a friend so we chatted and caught up. She told me about some new social groups on Facebook in the area and I joined up. I like to have options. And I'm always up for a gathering! Said friend told me about her trip to a tropical island next week which made me jealous but my time is coming (I hope, fingers crossed). We don't have any vacation plans lined up but we live in a resort area so once the warm weather hits it is like being on vacation every day!

So, I'm looking forward to those days. The days when I can sit outside all day and bask in the glorious sun. I know I'm not supposed to it but I love it. We do have a lot of winter left to get through though. So, go ahead and do some binge watching but be careful. A trap I have fallen into in the past is falling into a rut where I do nothing but watch t-v. That is not good. There are still all kinds of things you can do in the winter that doesn't involve watching t-v. Like gathering with friends. You know I have a group in my neighborhood that has different types of gatherings. I have game night once a week. I have three different book clubs I am part of. I had toyed with the idea of starting a craft club. One of my friends on Facebook is part of a monthly craft group and it looks like fun and you get to take cool stuff home with you. I haven't started it yet but I continue to mull it over.

When I was in my early 30's I was in a group of friends that met twice a week to play pool. It was at a bar and we met at happy hour so we had some fun and still got home in plenty of time for bed. We met Tuesdays and Thursdays and it was something I really looked forward to. Now, I'm meeting people out for coffee dates and that's okay. It's different than it used to be but still fun. Things change as we get older. So try to remember to enjoy every moment as it happens. It won't always be this way and that is okay but it's fun to look back.

There is no denying I love the warmer weather the most so I'm looking forward. There is still a lot to appreciate and enjoy about each and every day (and be grateful for) but I know things will be much more exciting when the warm weather hits. Things can't be over the top exciting all the time, unfortunately. But we can enjoy moments wherever we are in our lives. Be grateful for the small things. Do more things that you love. Embrace your friends and family and make sure to spend time with them. Sometimes, it feels like a lot of work to get a little enjoyment. Do it anyway, it's worth it. And it gives you something to look forward to!

Taco Tuesday, already? A lot of people had off yesterday so it's a short week and we are already ahead of the game. Figure out some things you can do in the next two months that will make life a little more enjoyable and exciting. Or be okay with sitting around recharging. Or best case scenario, mix it up. Hopefully you will be doing at least one thing per week that you really look forward to. Now, go have a Tuesday. And make today, your best day yet!

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