New Year's Resolution: Stop Whining on the Internet and Do Something!

Can we make ourselves a promise for 2016? Let's become people of action. In this political and social climate I am so sick and tired of reading comments on social media that start with "I would have" or "Why didn't you". And yes I'm feeling sassy this morning- you know why? I went on Facebook into a Minimalism group I'm in. Yes, I'm in a minimalism group. I'm trying to break my "I can't get rid of this it might come in handy later mentality". I'm never going to be the person with bare walls and 4 place settings of dishes but I'm working on paring down. 

Back to what got me all riled up- Lady #1 posts that she is feeling so relieved because she cleaned out her families closets and dropped everything that they didn't wear or that didn't fit off to a charity for Syrian refugees. Lady #2 chimes in with "I would have donated to American children in need". You know what Lady #2- the problematic word in that sentence is WOULD. Lady #1 took action. She got off her butt and she donated stuff she wasn't using. Lady #2, you are sitting at a computer talking about what you WOULD do. Instead actually do something so that you can type "I also donated our extra clothing to local children in need". That is how to not be an asshole on Facebook. 

You can support what you'd like, but TAKE ACTION! Make 2016 a year of change. Instead of bitching on the internet about how your school system sucks go to a meeting of the school board, send a letter, propose something that worked for another district. BE LOUD, BE HEARD! 

Are you on Facebook posting cute memes about how Jesus was a refugee? SIGN A PETITION, MAKE A DONATION, VOLUNTEER!

Do you think that the local precinct could use some cheering up? BRING A GIFT CARD, BUY A MEAL, DROP OFF A THANK YOU NOTE!

Strongly dislike a political candidate? Here's an idea instead of spending your energy calling their supporters idiots or posting memes online FIGURE OUT WHO YOU WANT TO SUPPORT AND GET INVOLVED. PUT UP SIGNS, MAKE CALLS, VOLUNTEER!

Are you appalled by the numerous shootings of black folks taking place around the country? GO TO A MARCH, SHOW YOUR SUPPORT, DEMAND CHANGE!

Realize that your area has a large population who can't afford basics like food and clothing? START A FOOD DRIVE, VOLUNTEER, DONATE YOUR EXCESS!

Do you really want the local playground playhouse painted neon green? GO TO A MEETING, OFFER TO BUY THE PAINT, VOLUNTEER YOUR TIME? 

Seriously guys even the little things matter if you JUST GET INVOLVED. If you believe in something find a way to support it with something other than empty words and internet bickering. 
So please join me in this resolution to get off our butts in 2016 and stop using the phrase "I would have" because that means you didn't do a DAMN thing. 

This year let's all say " I DID."


7 Tips for Spending the Holidays in A Hotel

Note: This post is part of a promotion I am doing with TravelingMom & Hyatt House but my opinions and tips on Holidays in Hotels are all my own!

Travel during the holidays can be a whole different animal. Kids who are always excited to go to a hotel suddenly have big questions- "How will Santa know where we are?", "Does it have a chimney?", "Will we be able to have a tree?". If holiday travel is in your plans this year I've got 6 things you can do to prepare for a hotel holiday!

1) Get tree-ative!

Now is the time to show the kids that the Christmas tree is open to interpretation. Many hotels will have a lobby tree but for your room you can pick out a small tabletop model or even a wall decal or kiddo's drawn picture. Decorating a tiny craft store tree can be just as fun for your littles, even offering the ability to be creative and create ornaments out of ribbons and construction paper. 

2) Maintain a family tradition. 

Do you cuddle up every year and watch Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer while drinking cocoa and eating popcorn? You can do that in a hotel! With extended stay hotels like Hyatt House you can even bake cookies as a family in your hotel room. Continuing annual holiday traditions can put kids at ease about being in a new place during the holidays. 

3) Make travel the tradition. 

Traveling for special holiday events can create a new tradition. Picking the right hotel can open up whole new experiences to your family. I've done a special girls trip the last few years with my daughters. Our time away also gives dad a chance to go shopping on his own and hide presents. We spent one year in a San Antonio Riverwalk hotel where we watched the Ford Holiday River Parade & Lighting Ceremony from the balcony and this year we are headed to New Orleans to stay at the Hyatt House (review to come soon) and watch the Crewe of Jingle Parade.

4) Spread the joy. 

Take the time to connect with a member of the hotel staff. There will inevitably be someone working on a holiday away from their own family. Have your kids color a card and slip a local gift card or tip in it as a thank you!

5) Make it a family affair. 

Families that travel together.... don't have to clean their own houses in preparation for relatives. Propose a destination Christmas in lieu of presents. Everyone gets to spend time together exploring a new place, no one has to clean and host, everyone can retreat to their own rooms at night- win, win, win! 

6) Make up for any lack of decoration by seeking out a winter wonderland in the area. 

Many areas have a well known lit up neighborhood, drive thru light display or if you're anywhere near College Station Texas head over to Santa's Wonderland to see more than 3 million twinkling lights.

7) Above all else keep in mind that the holidays are about family so as long as you are together wherever you are you can celebrate!

Want to chat more about travel and holidays?

Join me on Monday, December 7th as I chat holiday travel with TravelingMom and Hyatt! Follow along on Twitter at 8pm CST by watching for #TMOM and #HyattHouse!
During the party we'll be giving out prizes. One person will win a 2-night stay at any Hyatt House Hotel and three people will win a $100 Visa gift card! RSVP below and be on the party for a chance to win!

Hyatt House Twitter Party Giveaway