CELEBRATE: All the birthdays you missed in 2020
A good seven months into SIP, there are many spring and summer birthdays that went uncelebrated By now, we’ve all hit some sort of stride and know what a social circle entails (see the Monterey County Health Department’s Covid-19 guidelines for more details). Make plans virtually or in-person (at a distance) and do one thing (within reason) that each person wanted to do for their birthday but couldn’t. Did one person want to do a hike? There are a lot of parks now open. How about camping? Many campsites are closed, but a backyard set-up may do – just avoid the roaring campfire, would you? Or order a three-course meal from your favorite restaurant, set the table with a tablecloth, and enjoy the food and pleasant conversation. Just don’t forget the cake/pie/sweet treat with candles at the end.
DRESS UP: to go nowhere
The hottest fashion trend in 2020 is… drumroll… sweatpants. Although the liberty of going a full day without dressing up to go to work has been glorious, it can also have long-term side effects. (Sources include numerous articles such as The Cut’s “Will I Ever Wear Pants Again?” and MarketWatch’s “The Devil Wears Sweatpants,” which debates the queen of fashion herself, Anna Wintour, wearing red joggers.) The SIP uniform makes one wonder, who do we get dressed up for? This week, dress up for yourself. And not just a button-up, but really have fun with your closet. Wear the dress you only wore once, or that overly festive tie. If you need a wardrobe refresh, find some statement pieces at vintage or thrift shops like Lunablu, the Cat’s Meow or Goodwill. While you’re at it, go all out with your makeup too. Try on a bold red lip. Or do your ideal everyday beat, as if you aren’t pressed for time – because you’re not.
Birthdays are celebratory but also a time to reflect on who you’ll be this time around the sun. Whether it’s rethinking your five-year-plan or simply finding your “people,” a clear mindset can be a great way to gain perspective. If you need your alone time, try buying yourself a new journal, or revisit pivotal pieces of literature, movies, films and even local places that have shifted your perspective. Does it have the same power? How do you look at those places and pieces now? If you need different people in your life, try Meetup.com. There are plenty of local groups that meet virtually that can help foster your creative, spiritual or entrepreneurial spirit. A year older, and a year better.
WELCOME: yourself back as a functioning member of society
No, life isn’t back to normal and who knows when it will be. But it’s important to remind yourself that there are others out there trying to keep arts and culture alive, nature thriving and helping their neighbors. Sunset Center is hosting concerts in its parking lot and art exhibits at the Marjorie Evans Gallery (sunsetcenter.org). Meanwhile the Wild & Scenic Film Festival, a benefit for the Ventana Wilderness Alliance, happens on Thursday, Oct. 8 from 6-9pm – from the comfort of your home. If you’re willing to venture outside, try to find volunteer opportunities to feed your neighbors. Supporting a food drive at the Food Bank for Monterey County is a great way to start.
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