Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy sitting around watching Netflix as much as the next person, but it’s time for a change. After two years of feeling like I wasted my entire Christmas break, I finally decided to make a list of activities to help make the most of my time this year. I want an exciting break full of trips, lots of good food, and of course, relaxation. It’s also important to stay active, so scheduling some time for a good gym sesh is a must. I want to come back to good ol’ SJU better than ever, and share all the amazing things I did over break!

Exercise

Lifting a weight in the gym

I realized that the fully-equipped gym in my basement shouldn’t go to waste. I read all about the perks of working out daily, which would definitely be beneficial to me over break. With one month off, I found a bunch of 30-day gym routines that would help minimize my Santa belly. A few of them required a gym, which I have access to, but I was worried I’d have to skip on the days I wasn’t home. Luckily, I found some that do not require a full blown gym, so I can do these exercises in the comfort of my bedroom. After exercising for a full month, I hope to come back to school in a steady routine that will help me keep up in preparing for my summer body.

Movies

Relaxing and enjoying a movie

Having a month off allows for a lot of time to spend with family. My family loves to watch movies together over break, so I came up with a list of Netflix movies that I’m planning to watch with them over break. Of course we’ll still watch the classics, like Elf, Love Actually, and Home Alone.

Coloring Books

Coloring book and colored pencils

A great way to destress over break is to embrace your inner child and get yourself a coloring book. There are numerous health benefits associated with coloring, so make sure you take some time for yourself and sit down with a coloring book. “Coloring definitely has therapeutic potential to reduce anxiety, create focus or bring [about] more mindfulness,” according to Marygrace Berberian, a certified art therapist and Clinical Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator for the Graduate Art Therapy Program at NYU. In other words, coloring can be a great way to help you feel restored after a hectic semester full of exams and group projects. Plus, you’ll have some great artwork you can proudly show your friends and family!

Road Trip

Going on a road trip

Another thing I noticed last Christmas break is that out of the entire beautiful state of Pennsylvania, I’ve actually seen very little of it. Since it’s time to get into the Christmas spirit, I decided to make a plan to travel across Pennsylvania on a Christmas light tour. I love looking at Christmas lights, so this is definitely at the top of my list. Even though it’s a 13-hour trip across the state, there’s plenty of time to do it over our month-long break. A destination closer to home is ice skating at Penn’s Landing. This festive destination is a great way to put someone in the Christmas mood, and despite falling on my butt multiple times, it’ll definitely be a ton of fun. Another stop on my list is New Hope, PA. I love to shop, and this is definitely the place to do it. Over this break, I hope I’ll be able to make it to all the places on my list!

Journaling

An assortment of journals

A good way to look back on break is to keep a journal. It’s also a good way to express yourself because you can do as little or as much as you want with it. You can keep track of your dreams, your favorite quotes, poems, songs, or just observations from your day. I could write for days about my favorite song. Keeping a journal is also a good way to relax before heading off to bed. Importantly, it’s a good way to reflect on the excellent break that I’ll be having this year.

We’ve got 3 more weeks. We can do this. #HawkTalk

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