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Believe it or not, 2015 is almost over! The new year means a fresh start, new skills to master, and new experiences to be had. Now, you guys know how much the Fred Parent team loves setting goals and making lists. We thought we'd put together a few resolutions that anyone, anywhere can do. We hope these inspire you to set goals for yourself and your family that are creative and fun. Remember: Your goals also need to be attainable, clearly defined, and measurable.


Happy New Year! 2016 is going to be AMAZING!



Top Ten New Year's Resolutions


1)Get enough sleep- Yeah, yeah, yeah, we know right? Everything starts with sleep, guys. Getting enough sleep sets your mood, keeps your mind clear, and helps you maintain balanced energy levels. It's hard to knock out the rest of your resolutions if you're sleep deprived!


Pssst... Parents of babies, toddlers, and young children get a pass on this one. Do the BEST you can, guys!


2)Focus on the good- Surround yourself with positive people and let go of toxic relationships. Start every day with at least one thing to look forward to. It may just be your daily cup of Wawa coffee or the way your toddler's hair smells after a bath. Happiness comes in all forms. Before going to bed, think of 3 things that you are grateful for. Be as specific as possible. We LOVE the idea of keeping a gratitude journal. Write those things down every night. When going through a particularly hard time you'll have those moments to flip through and look back on.


3)Find a way to exercise that you love and look forward to doing- Stop thinking about fitness as something to get through in order to lose weight or get beach ready. There are millions of activities out there! Find one that you are passionate about and enjoy. Start a dodgeball team, try hot yoga, stand up paddle boarding, hike, join Stroller Strides, try crossfit, dance, Pitaiyo, jiu jitsu, or power-lifting. All of these activities can be found in Fredericksburg, by the way. Please don't worry about starting at the bottom or having seemingly no skill for the activity. The more you try the better you will get. Have fun and play!


4)Learn to say, "no" - Your time is precious. Don't waste it on being busy for the sake of busyness or because you worry people will be mad at you for saying, "no." When presented with an activity/request ask yourself, "Is this good for me, my family, and others? Will it be detrimental to me, my family, or others?" Choose accordingly.


5)Make time for yourself- This makes it to the New Year's Resolutions list every year doesn't it? Let's really tackle it in 2016! Making time for yourself doesn't necessarily mean a weekend away or an hour of meditation every morning (though both sound awesome!). Try to become more aware of your limits and honor them. Care for yourself as you would care for others. Also, see #4 on this list...


6)      Make time to connect with your partner- With kids, work, volunteering, self-care, etc., it can be hard to squeeze in meaningful time with your significant other. Try starting small. Set aside a few minutes every day where you can both really have a conversation without kids or screens getting in the way. Want to up the ante? Why not try a monthly date night? Here a 10 great date night ideas in Fredericksburg and 10 equally awesome stay-at-home date night ideas for when you're too tired or stressed to plan anything, or simply want to save money.


7)Take control of your finances- Do you know how much you bring in every month? Do you know how much you spend? Do you know how much debt you have or what your credit score looks like? How long until you can comfortably retire? Questions like these can make anyone a little squeamish. The fact of the matter is... You need to know the answers. Knowing your financial profile will give you the confidence you need to really start setting yourself and your family on a brighter path for the future. Talk to your partner about your goals. When do you want to retire? What does that look like? How will you get there? Do you want to be debt free? Get empowered and start taking control today.


8)Declutter as a habit- One big purge session is so cathartic! Few things feel better than letting go of clutter and organizing your space. Don't let it end there, though! Try and spend 15 minutes every day tiding up and editing your things. Try different organizational methods and see which is the best fit for your family. One of our favorite tips is to always have a "donate" box near your entryway with a pad of paper nearby. Every time you toss something in the box, write it down along with its value. When the box gets full, drop it off at your favorite charity. Keep any sort of receipt and the list to use when you do your end of the year taxes.


9)Learn a new skill as often as possible- Never stop learning. Never stop being curious. Also, you can learn how to do just about everything via YouTube.


10)Really connect with loved ones- Give your grandma or sibling a call. Skype or Face Time an old friend you haven't seen in months. Texting and instant messaging is great, but nothing beats hearing someone's voice. Human connection is everything. Let's not lose sight of the good stuff.


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Pouches' Community Corner

Pouches Visits the Past


If Pouches' experience at History Camp is any indication, your son or daughter will enjoy joining Washington Heritage Museums and the George Washington Foundation for History Camp in Fredericksburg. The week-long day camp will be held June 25-29, from 9:00 a.m. to noon each day.

Young historians discover American history with hands-on experiences as they walk in the footsteps where the history of Fredericksburg, and a budding America, was created. The camp complements the history taught in classrooms with activities such as soap making, code breaking, colonial crafts, penmanship and much more.