New Year, New You

The beginning of January marks the approaching end of the holidays, as we return to our everyday lives, whether it be school, work or managing children. However, although 2016 has passed, 2017 provides the chance for new opportunities, a chance to explore and discover more.

This year I’m attempting to become more active and go outdoors more, whether it be hiking or simply taking that first step outside. Although the frigid air outside may seem a difficult obstacle to surpass, I hope my determination will help me persevere despite the wind and occasional gloomy weather. Although it may seem a difficult feat at first, I believe that this goal will spark many more and continue to push me to challenge my boundaries.

So this year, try something new. Push out of your comfort zone, discover a newfound passion or interest, and explore beyond what is regular. After all, no matter the person you were in 2016, 2017 is a chance to start anew and redefine yourself.

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A New Perspective

A few weeks ago, I decided to go hiking to Hunter’s Point. However reluctant I was at first, I soon became incredibly grateful of my decision, as that hike really grounded me and gave me some new perspective.

At first, that painful, dusty hike seemed a burden rather than a blessing, bstrollerhikespicut long minutes – even hours – with only the rhythm of my feet, and rare conversation, really provided time and space for me to think. Surrounded by shrubbery, I could finally clear my head, and the escape from the bustle and the business around me allowed me to actually be mindful of surroundings. It’s difficult in a person’s everyday life to truly process everything going around – to be truly aware. We are often so caught up in the bustle of things that we lose purpose of what matters – the process. In fact, the hike truly brought perspective on some issues that were bothering me the past month. My new perspective wasn’t just the view from the cliff, but also a new light on my life, which helped me clear my mind and realize some decisions ahead.

All in all, I learned that a hike really can be the underestimated cure to some of your problems. Therefore, if you’re debating about a hike, or feeling lazy or reluctant, do it. Even if the hike is painful at first, I’m sure you won’t regret it, and eventually maybe you’ll overcome some mental hurdles of your own as well. For me, the hot, dusty air and sweat trickles were minor setbacks in the hike, and the newfound perspective in the end – both the view at the top of the mountain and my mindset – were definitely worth the journey hiking up.

To experience my hike at Fremont Older (http://strollerhikes.com/location/fremont-older/), try the 3.8 mile Seven Springs Route (http://strollerhikes.com/hike/seven-springs-loop/) or the 2.4 mile Hunter’s Point Route (http://strollerhikes.com/hike/prospect-road-to-hunters-point/).

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Christmas

Christmas is fast approaching! But for many different people, this holiday has very different meanings…

For some, the holiday season can be summed up in four words: “shop ‘til you drop.” Christmas season is a time for them to join the masses of rushed shoppers, cram in crowded malls and enjoy flashy television advertisements. Whether it be buying gifts for friends and family or taking advantage of holiday sales, shopping is a fundamental part of the holiday season for many.

For others, it may simply be welcomed as an eager respite from the strains of work or school – a chance to relax before we are forced to pick up our duties and return to everyday life. In fact, a few are more excited on simply the idea of a chance to relax than the other Christmas celebrations that come with this holiday.

For my family and many others around the world, Christmas is cherished as a time for family and friends. Welcoming distant relatives home, perhaps reminiscing over a cup of hot chocolate and hanging up lights around the Christmas tree…

We all have our own unique versions of Christmas, but almost all of them share one thing in common: they are a chance to relax and renew yourself. So pull out the year-old Christmas decorations and enjoy Christmas!

Happy holidays everyone!

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Thanksgiving Hike

This week I joined a Stroller Hikes hike, in particular the Thanksgiving Hike at Fremont Older. At first a 1.5 hour hike seemed daunting for me, but I was soon proved wrong and rather enjoyed the experience by the end.

Perhaps it was because of the weather. The hike was mostly sunny, fairly nice for a November day, and my mood soared along with the sun. The weather also allowed the hike to attract an unusually large plethora of people, and I enjoyed observing many others passing by: bikers, joggers, and occasionally even a dog.

Maybe it was due to the view. As I observed the gorgeous landscape of buildings and nature mingled together, I felt a feeling of satisfaction and appreciation. The feeling of accomplishment from hiking up the hills added a new dimension to the view, and I looked on with a newfound light.

Perhaps it was because of the people. I15171138_1040096776113664_2657930643140357361_n enjoyed the children’s naive and carefree attitude, as they rushed down the hills or chased after a fluffy dog. With the reassurance of their parent’s protection and the naivety of their youth, they charged on straight ahead, unheeded by hills, onlookers, or a fall; in fact, the children sometimes did stumble and fall, but soon picked themselves back up and continued straight on ahead, refusing to be discouraged by such a trivial hindrance.

But although these all were vital aspects to the hike I experienced, it was mostly a fun and enjoyable hike, and I highly recommend joining one yourself!

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The Meaning of Thanksgiving

What does Thanksgiving mean to you?

Perhaps it brings fond memories, as you are once again reunited with distant family members, geographically and perhaps even emotionally.

Perhaps it brings painful memories, reminding you of your large, rambunctious family dinners, arguing with siblings and family members on politics and opinions and rekindling old rivalries.

Perhaps it brings feelings of excitement and thrill, as you watch the Thanksgiving parade floats, or feelings of anxiety, as you struggle to finish making Thanksgiving dinner and not burn the turkey.

But although it may bring feelings of laughter and joy, mingled with nervousness and disappointment, Thanksgiving is, in the end, not about impressing your guests, besting your rivals, or arguing with family and friends – it’s about being thankful and reuniting with family and friends. So this year, rather than stress or worry or argue, make an effort to live in the moment, and simply appreciate all that you have right now.

But how to start? The first step is easy: express your gratitude to family, friends, and people that have supported and influenced you, and show them how much they trully mean to you.

How? By simply saying two words – two words which we take for granted every day.

“Thank you.”

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