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"What is there to look forward to?"

January 17, 2014 - Jennifer Brookens
This question used to be a ritual for my daughter and I. At bedtime, when she was about 3 or 4, she always wanted to go through her calendar (It's changed over the years from Dora the Explorer to Hello Kitty to Katniss Everdeen of the Hunger Games now). I'd show her what day we just finished, what day it would be tomorrow, and what was coming up... from birthdays, to the next holiday.

"So how long until Easter?" she would ask. Or who has the next birthday. She would get giddy about these. Now, she's all too aware of the lapses in-between the "fun" dates. It's always worse after the holidays: with a birthday in November, she has a special event frenzy going from Halloween to Christmas and the promise of a New Year. And then what?

"What is there to look forward to," she asked me a few nights ago. It's not as simple as it once was. We don't need to grab the calendar to show what is or isn't coming up now. She knows now that Valentines Day means some neat treats, but doesn't get a day off, and then there is a two-month stretch until the next holiday. So I've had to break out the trick I have to use on myself during the January/February blahs. We look ahead to see if there are any marathons of our favorite shows coming on. We try to plan a weekend day trip (and hope Mother Nature doesn't try to pull another icy trick on us!) We look at her friend's birthday invitation for a sleepover (and I secretly plan a night of "me" time).

There's also only 62 days left until spring (and let's hope winter doesn't overstay its welcome like last year!) Then everything will start happening again, and instead we'll be complaining about being too busy. And the crazy life blur will strike up once again...


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