ditch the rut

April 04, 2014

time for something new

Staring back at you are four walls that cry boring and bare. This happens every year after you take down your holiday decorations . . . and it's still winter. You trudge through. You try to enjoy your sweaters, knowing they'll be packed away soon enough. But some days are harder than others. Is it spring yet?

Technically it is. Old Man Winter didn't get the memo and we're all over it. We're all over talking about it even, so we'll stop and load this entry up with things you can do to bring some spring into your life, like now.

Pack your bags for spring break in an exotic location, over a long weekend road trip, in a hotel room downtown for goodness sake. If your break hasn't passed, there's still time to jump on sites like Kayak, Expedia and Priceline. There's even aptly named LastMinuteTravel.com (for every aspect of travel including flights, hotels, car rentals, vacation packages, cruises, even activities. You can even sort 'Tonight and Tomorrow' hotel deals by TripAdvisor ratings).

plants

Buy some houseplants. Plant people are happier than non-plant people. It's true. They live longer, too. We'll find the research to back that up (found it!) but trust us, it's true. So run to a garden center and give yourself time to get lost in the greenhouse. Plus spring plants for your containers, windowboxes and beds are fresh in stock, get 'em while they last!

Add color to your life. Speaking of color, it's therapeutic. Paint one wall, repurpose a flea market find with a fresh coat of paint, or paint your whole house if you have the energy. It will change your mood and inspire you.

Take on a challenge. Check out this TED Talk from Matt Cutts called "Try Something New for 30 Days." And let us know what the next 30 days looks like for you. (We're considering learning to arm knit an infinity scarf, something that may just take you 30 minutes if you're a quick learner, or choosing one great American classic per month . . . and actually reading it! We're using this list.

party

Invite people over. Stop waiting for the right time, the right furniture or wine glasses and just invite your friends over already! Make it a potluck, just do apps and snacks, whatever. Maybe even invite over people you'd like to become friends with, people who are interesting and have qualities you admire. What could be more inspiring over some Tomato Basil Kettle Chips?

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