7 New Things to Do in 2021

Hit the road, Jack. Yes, we're talking to you, 2020. And don't you come back, either.

Has there been a year in recent memory that we were so glad to see in the rearview mirror? Now that 2021 has commenced — thankfully! — it's important to remember that we need to be proactive to make things different in the new year. Time to try new things, especially in a year in which we've been so challenged to stay healthy — mentally, physically, and emotionally. So we assembled seven stories that CircleAround published over the last few weeks to give you some ideas about how to approach the new year differently.

Happy new year! And let's try not to think about 2020 for a while.

1. Relationships: Help the Elderly

One CircleAround writer reflected on how her grandmother has been navigating COVID-19: scared and alone. "It is looking like my grandmother will be celebrating her 99th birthday all alone, and that just breaks my heart," she wrote. So the author decided she would make a special present for her Nonnie, and shared how you can, too. "How to Make a Senior Care Kit" offers ideas on how to make another person's day — and this idea can be scaled for you to make such kits for many other loved ones in your life.

2. Inspire: Take Care of Mother Earth

There is one woman we all need to give more attention to in 2021: Mother Earth. A CircleAround author penned a piece with some helpful suggestions, "8 Ways You Can Help to Save the Planet." These tips range from steering clear of farmed factory meat to running or walking for a nonprofit. As she notes, "While most every scientist believes that climate change is real and that carbon dioxide released from burning coal and other fossil fuels is a major culprit, there is less public awareness of the roles of other human activities, such as deforestation and industrial agriculture, in climate change."

3. Food: Make Your Kitchen Saucy

Cooking can be intimidating, and not just for beginners. Veteran cooks know that there are traditionally five sauces from which are born all other sauces. In "5 Secret Weapon Sauces for the Modern Kitchen," our CircleAround writer suggests five new sauces around which any kitchen can revolve. These new contenders are easier to make and healthier, too, and can be the foundation of your 2021 menu.

4. Wellness: Put Your Phone Down

If it weren't for "screens," we'd all probably have gone out of our collective minds during the pandemic. But even still, we need to give our eyes — and brains — a rest from the constant pixel parade. "7 Safe and Healthy Hobbies That Help You Step Away from the Screen" addresses this scenario, suggesting a variety of other activities that you can take up, to relieve some of the nonstop screen time in which we're all overindulging at the moment.

5. Parenting: New Ways to Hang With Your Kids

With so many media, platforms, and distractions out there, it can be challenging to compete for your children's attention. "Ways Parents Can Bond with Their Tweens and Teens" shares a range of both new and traditional ideas for how you can meet them where they are and make that special connection with them, from the old (movie night) to the very new (making a TikTok dance video together).

6. Work/Money: Save Money — and the Planet 

If you could save money, and the planet, by easily making your own household products, would you? This CircleAround author suggests, in granular detail, "5 DIY Ways to Live More Sustainably (and Save Money, Too!)." She offers ways you can make everything from your own deodorant and household cleaners to delicious soup broth — all while saving cash and keeping landfills from filling up.

7. Work/Money: Make a Schedule

During the pandemic and quarantine, one day can drift into another, leading to boredom and a profound lack of productivity. A CircleAround author's antidote? A morning routine. "How a Routine Changed My Day-to-Day Life" details how she was able to impose order on the rudderlessness of not having a schedule. "I know it seems so simple, but it has made all of the difference in my life," she writes. "I am excited to get out of bed in the morning, I am so much more productive, and I am a much more positive person."


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