By Paul Morrone CFP®, CPA/PFS, MSA
The old saying is that you never have a second chance to make a first impression, and the beginning of 2019 certainly gave us something to smile about. In year’s past New Year’s Day has been a drag. Coming off a holiday hangover (and maybe an actual hangover), sleeping in late usually led to a day filled with mindless television and unhealthy food. This year was a different story, as Kyle woke up right on schedule and our day began promptly at 8am. In stark contrast to the sub-zero temperatures of New Year’s Day of 2018, January first of 2019 brought sunshine and unseasonably warm weather to us in the Northeast. With highs in the mid-50’s, we capitalized on this opportunity to open the windows and dismantle the house from the holiday season. The fresh air circulating coming through the windows was cleansing in nature and helped clear out all the residual smells from the parade of people and food over the previous few weeks. Needless to say, it was a welcomed change of pace.
An earlier morning didn’t stop us from enjoying pancakes, a rarity in our house. Jill and I tend to favor savory breakfast foods more than sweets but seeing as this was a holiday we made an exception. After taking down the tree and packing up all the decorations, Jill and I had some time to relax. With Kyle down for his afternoon nap, the warm weather also encouraged me to get outside and take a cruise along the shoreline. It was warm enough for a windows-down heat-on drive, and the feeling of the brisk air coming off the ocean was so refreshing I drove for almost an hour with no set destination. I’ve always valued a drive to nowhere as a relaxation technique, as I can easily clear my head behind the wheel if I know I don’t have anywhere to be. It also allows me to appreciate how beautiful the state of Connecticut is and reminds me (despite the high cost of living, sluggish economy and political turmoil) why I enjoy living here.
Of course, all the fun and games ended after my drive as we discussed the obligatory new year diet that is now necessary to counteract the pounds of stuffed breads, pasta and sweets that were consumed during Christmas. I’m always one that struggles with a diet, as I constantly look forward to that after-dinner Reese’s peanut butter cup or chocolate chip cookie. It also doesn’t help that my favorite foods generally involve bread and pasta of some sort – in direct conflict with the recommendations of most healthy diets. Either way, it’s a new year and a new challenge. We’ll see how it goes!
Wishing you the best of luck with your new year’s resolutions. Remember, the first few weeks are the hardest!
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