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Best New Year Resolutions

It seems like the New Year is the best time for people to start new goals. You can start them anytime throughout the year, but it seems like starting it on the first day of the new year is the most popular starting point.

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If you are one of the many millions of people who plan to make (and actually stick) to some New Year’s resolutions, then you’ve come to the right place. Do you have your resolutions written down yet? The first step towards achieving your goals to make them concrete. Sure, losing weight is a great goal but how do you plan to do this? Instead, make the goal to hit the gym 4 times a week, or cut out fast food.

Below are 10 of the most popular New Year’s resolutions, there are plenty more but these can help give you an idea of something you might want to work on. How many of them can you guess?

Top 10 New Years Resolutions for 2015
1. Lose weight
2. Getting organized
3. Spend less, save more
4. Enjoy life to the fullest
5. Staying fit and healthy
6. Learn something exciting
7. Quit smoking
8. Help others in their dreams
9. Fall in love
10. Spend more time with family
(According to Statisticbrain.com/new-years-resolution-statistics/ & University of Scranton Journal of Clinical Psychology)

The problem with creating New Year’s resolution is that people tend to give them up quickly. It is well known in the gym industry that sign ups in January are very high and then tend to drop around February and March as people stop going. According to the data on Statistic Brain, only 8% of people are successful in achieving their resolution. 75% of people will maintain their resolution the first week then the number drops to 46% after 6 months.

So how do you prevent this dropoff in regards to your own resolutions? Time Magazine put out a list of websites that can help with specific goals like doing yoga daily or forming good habits. Another tip is to find someone else with the same goal. Having a support system and someone to hold you accountable is a great way to stay on track. Keep a journal of your progress so you can see how your goals are fairing. You can also reward yourself when you stay on track, and punish yourself (no tv for a day or no soda at dinner for a week) when you don’t follow through.

Resolutions and goals are about discipline. If you can keep yourself focused and disciplined enough to keep going then you can be one of those 8% of Americans who actually completes their resolution!

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Fun Family Christmas Movies

santa clause movie

Source: IMDB

The kids can’t wait to open presents, and you probably can’t wait to see if you got a little something yourself. What do you do on Christmas Eve to keep everyone occupied and away from the gifts? You could go out, but that’s what everyone is going to do so don’t be surprised if places are crowded. What about the park? That’s a great idea, but only if you’re in a place where the weather permits. So if you want to stay indoors, you can pop in a movie or bring on up on Netflix or another streaming service.

Here are some great Christmas-themed family-friendly movies to watch with everyone.

Elf
After inadvertently wreaking havoc on the elf community due to his ungainly size, a man raised as an elf at the North Pole is sent to the U.S. in search of his true identity. (IMDB)

The Nightmare Before Christmas
Jack Skellington, king of Halloween Town, discovers Christmas Town, but doesn’t quite understand the concept. (IMDB)

The Santa Clause
When a man inadvertantly kills Santa on Christmas Eve, he finds himself magically recruited to take his place. (IMDB)

How the Grinch Stole Christmas
On the outskirts of Whoville, there lives a green, revenge-seeking Grinch who plans on ruining the Christmas holiday for all of the citizens of the town. (IMDB)

Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town
A mailman reveals the origin of Santa Claus. (IMDB)

Prancer
A farm girl nurses a wounded reindeer she believes is one of Santa’s, hoping to bring it back to health in time for Christmas. Her holiday spirit inspires those around her, something her disheartened father is having trouble understanding. (IMDB)

The Year Without a Santa Claus
When a weary and discouraged Santa Claus considers skipping his Christmas Eve run one year, Mrs. Claus and his Elves set out to change his mind. (IMDB)

A Charlie Brown Christmas
Repelled by the commercialism he sees around him, Charlie Brown tries to find the true meaning of Christmas. (IMDB)

It’s a Spongebob Christmas
It’s a SpongeBob Christmas!” is a SpongeBob SquarePantsepisode from season eight. In this episode, Plankton turns everybody in Bikini Bottom naughty by feeding them his special Jerktonium fruitcakes all in an effort to get his Christmas wish. (Spongebob Wikia)

Christmas Who?
Christmas Who?” is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season two. In this episode, Sandy tells SpongeBobabout Christmas traditions, and he then tells everybody in Bikini Bottom about Christmas. (Spongebob Wikia)

Christmas- Themed Episodes of the Simpsons

A Christmas Story
Ralphie has to convince his parents, his teacher, and Santa that a Red Ryder B.B. gun really is the perfect gift for the 1940s. (IMDB)

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
The Griswold family’s plans for a big family Christmas predictably turn into a big disaster. (IMDB)

Home Alone
An 8-year old troublemaker must protect his home from a pair of burglars when he is accidentally left home alone by his family during Christmas vacation. (IMDB)


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Tasty Christmas Treats to Get you in the Spirit

Christmas is a time for family, festivities, and, our favorite, FOOD! Who doesn’t love walking in to the smell of fresh baked Christmas cookies? Or cooking the holiday ham? Maybe you have your own family Christmas traditions. It’s always fun to make those good ol’ recipes, but it’s also fun to change it up and make some new items. Here are some delicious Christmas recipes we think you should be trying this season.

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Christmas Crunch
Cookingclassy.com
A perfect treat while you wait for dinner or snack on while the kids open presents.

peppermint hot chocolate

Peppermint White Hot Chocolate
Gimmesomeoven.com
It’s a spicy take on the traditional Christmas beverage.

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No Bake Peppermint White Chocolate Cheesecakes
Cookingclassy.com
No baking? Count me in!

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Gingerbread Cheesecake Bites
Afewshortcuts.com
Bet you can’t wait to make these.

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Eggnog Snickerdoodles
Amyshealthybaking.com
Combining two of the classics of Christmas: cookies and eggnog.

Christmas-trees

Krispie Treat Christmas Trees
Raininghotcoupons.com
These are too cute not to try and make.

kahlua hot choc

Kahlua Hot Chocolate
damndelicious.net
The hot chocolate for adults.

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Cinnamon Roll Pancakes
therecipecritic.com
Ok, these aren’t really a treat, but they’re sweet and delicious.

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Oreo Peppermint Bark
Crazyforcrust.com
Oreos AND peppermint? What could be better?

Reindeer Cupcakes
withsprinklesontop.net
These are perfect to make with the kids!

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Chocolate Covered Pretzels
lovefromtheoven.com
Salty, sweet, and just a touch of festivity.


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5 Great Gifts for Senior Citizens

If there’s that senior in your life, they deserve something great for the upcoming holidays. They have been through so many, they have surely received enough gifts and had their fair share of unused ones. You want to make yours special, you want it to be meaningful and useful.

It’s tough buying gifts for someone else. Sometimes you want to just get something you like, that you think they might enjoy. It’s a strategy, but maybe not the best one. You need to get to know them and what they like. If you find something that they have been wanting, but maybe didn’t want to go out and get, then you’re golden! But it can be hard to find out what they want without asking. We have some ideas to help you shop around for that senior in your life. If you don’t have a senior relative or friend, you should participate in a senior gift drive in your area. There are always many seniors each year living alone or in a nursing home that don’t have anyone to celebrate the holidays with. Check out your local newspaper or news websites to see what is going on in the area for Christmas and Hanukkah.

 

Photo Throw Blanket
Combine the heartfelt moment of a photo, but the utility of a blanket! No longer will a photo just sit on the shelf to be glanced at, Costco and other photo centers now offer the ability to customize a throw blanket with a photo.

kindle

Tablet or Kindle
Who doesn’t love a good book? Nowadays, many of us read them on tablets or Kindles. You are able to access thousands of books without leaving your home. Getting a senior a Kindle will allow them to access all these books, and you can set it up to feature large print for easier reading. A tablet is also a great idea to keep them busy. Spend a few hours getting them used to the system and download some fun games, and Skype to keep them in touch with loved ones.

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Gift Basket
Don’t just get any old gift basket, get one filled with all their favorite things! Maybe they are a coffee nut. Grab a custom coffee basket featuring a mug, coffee samples, chocolates, and cookies. Maybe they enjoy charcuterie, then you can get them a platter of delicious meats and cheeses. Whatever their tastes or preferences, there is a gift basket for it.

Grocery Store Gift Card
Even if your senior is not living independently, many senior living homes offer trips to the local grocery store. Grab them a gift card to that store so they can stock up on their favorite foods and snacks without the guilt of spending.

A Trip
If they are able to travel, get them tickets to their favorite spot, or send them on a cruise for the winter! Who would hate a cruise during the snowy days of December or January? If they are unable to travel and you live out of town, plan a surprise visit! Show up and surprise them with love and gifts, then take them out to their favorite restaurant. An experience is always a memorable gift that is hard to forget.


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Hanukkah Decorations and Treats

With December comes those big holidays many of us look forward to. Maybe you celebrate Christmas, maybe it’s Hanukkah, or maybe it’s something completely different like Festivus (Seinfeld fans will understand). If you are planning to celebrate Hanukkah this year, or maybe you are hosting the festivities at your house, you want to have your house decorated in the Hanukkah spirit.

star of david garland

Star of David Garland
You can buy this cute blue and white Star of David garland, or even make it yourself.

Star of David Wreath
Let everyone know you’re celebrating Hanukkah with a Star of David wreath.

dreidal app plate

Dreidel Appetizer Plate
Don’t be surprised when all your guests ask where you got this plate.

tea light menorah

Tea-Light Menorah
See how to make this simple, cute glass tea-light holder set. It’s a classic take on the menorah.

dreidel gift box

Dreidel Gift Box
Use these festive gift boxes shaped like dreidels to hide small treats or candy.

dreidal garland

Dreidel Garland
Make this paper dreidel garland to decorate the mantel, window, or doorway.

pumpkin challah

Pumpkin Challah Bread
Turn the classic Challah bread into a new favorite by adding pumpkin!

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Spiced Apple or Pear Fritters
Make plenty of these, they will be gone before you know it.

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Curried Sweet Potato Latkes
Spice up those plain potato latkes.

mandel brot

Mandel Brot
Think of this like the Jewish biscotti. Mandel means almond and Brot means bread in Yiddish.

nutella sufganiyot

Nutella Sufganiyot
This delicious Jewish doughnut just got better with some Nutella!