New Year, New (local) You!

There’s no talking around it – it’s arctic out there. Summer is on our minds at LoveLiveLocal HQ, and we’re busy making plans.  If you’re looking forward to sun-filled Sundays on the Hyannis Harborfront, we’ve got great news:  you can save the dates for the 2014 LoveLocal Fests – July 27, August 31 and September 28. Visit our Facebook page to check out event photos and be reminded of brighter days ahead.

Plus, did you know that we’ve teamed up with local yogi Annika Iliadis to create Cape Cod’s first-ever yoga weekend?  Mark your calendars for August 15-17 and sign up on the Love Yoga Fest website to be the first to know the details.

Top Ten New Year’s Resolutions
local edition

1) Exercise More

Whether you are willing to admit it or not, becoming more physically active is on everyone’s New Years’ goal list. With the vast increase in desk jobs and technology, human beings sit more than ever before, which inevitably leads to weight gain and other health problems.

For someone who has never been a member of a gym, it can be somewhat intimidating. But the good news is that most of the local gyms offer free introductory training sessions to familiarize new members with the facility layout. On the Upper Cape, there’s Rocky’s Gym and Fitness Center in East Falmouth and the Mashpee Fitness Center, which boasts an 80 degree pool. Willy’s Gym in Eastham also has a pool, as does the YMCA in Barnstable. If you prefer a woman’s only gym that provides daycare services, The Fitness Company in Mashpee and East Falmouth or The Woman’s Workout Company in Hyannis, (where the more you workout, the less you pay) are great options. If you just want a gym with great equipment and plenty of weights, Body Strong in Chatham andFitness 500 in Hyannis (which also has a great spinning program). If you would rather work out on your own schedule whether it be at 4am or midnight, Koko Fit Club (a digital gym) in Centerville, Harwich and Dennis or Anytime Fitness in Falmouth and Mashpee are the facilities for you.

Would you rather create a home gym? Check out Cape Cod Fitness in Hyannis for cardio machines and weight lifting equipment.

2) Eat Healthier/Drink Less

The New Year often rings in a goal of eating healthier and drinking less…especially in the aftermath of the indulgent holiday season.

Our favorite way to eat healthy here at LoveLiveLocal is to EAT LOCAL!  Buying food that’s in season is the best way to get the freshest product and most beneficial nutrients.  Try Farm Fare Market’s Winter CSA, which includes produce, herbs, eggs and homemade goods or Cape Cod Organic Farm’s Heritage Breed Pork CSA Program.  When dining out, watch portion size and seek out locally sourced items on the menu.

Need a little local guidance? Seek advice from Kind EatingLoving Health Now, or Creating a Healthy Balance, all local programs run by integrative nutrition therapists with holistic approaches to health and wellness. Or try Delicious Living Nutrition, a nutrition counseling company run by registered dietician and local food enthusiast Nicole Cormier.

Now to reduce the booze intake! Stock up on fun non-alcoholic drinks, like sparkling pomegranate or fresh juice, to keep things exciting at home for yourself and potential guests. Want to still be social, but avoid the bars? Spice up a night at the movies by taking in an award-winning film at the stunning Cape Cinema or grab a bite and a lane at The Lanes Bowl & Bistro in Mashpee Commons.

3) Try Something New

The New Year (aka the dead of winter) is a great time to buckle up and learn something new. The Cape is full of incredibly talented artists, musicians and experts ready to take you from beginner to advanced…and everywhere in between!

Awake your inner artist with the impressive variety of art classes and workshops available year-round. Explore options at the Cotuit Center for the Arts (or join their Drum Circle or Ballroomor Tap?), the Cultural Center of Cape Cod (learn Italian while you’re there), Dennis’ Cape Cod Museum of Art or Cape Cod Art Association in Barnstable.

Hear the music calling? Cape Cod Conservatory has a wonderful selection of adult (and youth) classes available at both their Falmouth and West Barnstable campuses. Dennisport’s West Bend Music offers weekly private lessons and boasts their own ukulele shop.

One of the most affordable ways to explore something new is through a Continuing Education or Adult Ed program. Indulge in Wine 101 or Grain & Grain (a workshop series combining artisan bread baking and wooden spoon carving) at Cape Cod Tech in Harwich. Learn Quickbooks,Spanish or Auto Repair at Upper Cape Tech in Bourne or check out the Nauset Community Education program for everything from rug braiding to Tai Chi.

So get out there and expand your horizons across Cape Cod in 2014!

4) Read More

Reading read more books, whether for pleasure, information gathering or self-exploration, is always a popular resolution.

For readers who like the feeling of the pages in their hand as well as those who have defected to the Nook or Kindle, the Cape’s public libraries have access, through the CLAMS network, to practically any book you would want to read.

For those of you who enjoy having a personal library, visit a locally owned bookstore to add to your home collection (if they don’t have it in the store, they can get it for you). From Eight Cousins in Falmouth, Titcomb’s Bookshop in Sandwich, Market Street Bookshop in Mashpee, Books by the Seain Osterville, Parnassus Books in Yarmouth Port, The Brewster Bookstore in Brewster, to Yellow Umbrella Books and Where the Sidewalk Ends in Chatham and Provincetown Bookshop in Provincetown, the Cape is covered with independent booksellers who not only have knowledge and a passion for books, but also host book signings and other author events for both adults and teens.

To find out about these events, keep up with Cape Cod Times journalist Melanie Lauwers who offers information on author events that are happening across the Cape, as well as weekly book recommendations. If you would prefer more structure around your reading choices, join a local book club, such as the one hosted monthly by Titcomb’s, or start one yourself!

5) Quit Smoking

January 1 offers the perfect chance to start the year fresh by dropping a bad habit or conquering an addiction – like smoking cigarettes, one of the hardest challenges to overcome.

People use various methods to accomplish this feat, from quitting cold turkey to signing up to run a marathon. Regardless of your chosen way, there are many local resources available to help you quit.

Some people try acupuncture, a healing technique derived from ancient Chinese medicine. Acupuncturists, such as Pia Mezzacappa of Falmouth and Jenny Wood of Cape Cod Acupuncturein Chatham, are trained to address addictions, especially nicotine addiction, by using fine needles inserted into points known to promote detoxification. Acupuncturists also often prescribe herbs to continue to help curb withdrawal symptoms. The Community Clinic for Acupuncture in West Dennis allows people to try out the alternative medicine in a more casual and inexpensive setting.

Another alternative therapy is hypnotherapy, which has been shown to have a high success rate when done correctly. If you’re open to trying it check out the Life Center for Health and Complementary Medicine in Orleans.

Want something a little more traditional? Try talking to an addiction coach from the Integrative Medicine and Holistic Wellness Center in Hyannis.

6) Get Organized

A clear space makes for a more productive mind, not to mention more time spent having fun.  If you’re perpetually fighting piles of stuff, maybe it’s time to make a small investment in cleaning up the clutter in your life.

Maryann Murphy, MSW, is a Mashpee-based professional organizer who will help you create a plan to organize your space and to manage your time so that you have more of it to spare.  Her services include a three-hour organizing turn-around, but no job is too small or too large. Contact Maryann for a free half-hour phone consultation and make this resolution a thing of the past.

If your closet has gotten the better of you, call on Expert Closets of West Yarmouth. Their team of professional designers can customize a solution for any need and budget. From bedrooms and pantries to laundry rooms and garages, Expert Closet builds all components in-house, and guides you on choosing woods, finishes, accessories and hardware.

7) Save Money

Whether you want a little extra cash in your pocket or are planning your next vacation, getting some expert savings help or at least making your money work harder is a good idea.

Start by opening a savings account at one of our local banks, where you’ll get friendly, personal service and convenient locations as well as perks like rewards programs and ATM fee refunds.  Options include Cape Cod Five, which has been serving locals since 1855; The Bank of Cape Cod; and Cape Cod Cooperative Bank, which offers a high interest CapeCash savings account.

Consult with an expert who can ask the right questions, and help you identify solutions based on your specific needs.  Michaela Herlihy, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER, of Beacon Financial Planning, Inc., a fee-only registered investment advisor located in Hyannis, can help you evaluate your goals and how to reach them efficiently – both through hourly consultations and via asset management services.

For women in transition, WE CAN is an essential resource – they will connect you with free, confidential one-to-one financial empowerment consultations.

8) Tackle Your To-Do List

Are those nagging items on your ever-present to-do list now on your New Year’s resolutions list? Do they include seemingly small projects around the home that you have been putting off because you aren’t sure you can actually accomplish them yourself? Then you should call Larry Egan of I Got a Guy Handyman Services  to help you tackle everything from small carpentry projects around the house to hanging a picture and assembling furniture.

Need your gutters cleaned? Call Cape Cod Gutters. Or your chimney swept? There’s Chimney Care Cape Cod. Do you want your house sparkling  after the latest messy winter storm?  Clean Green Cape Cod does a great job making homes shine in a natural and eco-friendly way.

Have a basket full of clothes to iron or pillows that need to be cleaned? Send them out (just this once!) to Marvelous Cleaners in Hyannis. Or need some of your clothes tailored? Go to Janet at Sew What in Hyannis, Perfect Fit Tailoring in Orleans, or Stitched in South Cape Village in Mashpee.

Regardless of what is on your to-do list, there is a Cape Codder out there capable of helping you check it off.

9) Find Work/Life Balance

Striking the balance between paying our bills and living our dreams is an ongoing process. Whether you work in an office, hold down multiple jobs or work from home, you can find a path that blurs the line between work and play.

  •  Find a coach: Maggie French, founder of Living Whole, specializes in helping you move forward with focus, and aligning your life with your values.  Nicole Gelinas, a Wellfleet-based coach, serves as “a sounding board for your soul,” working to connect your mind and body authentically.
  • Create an ideal workspace:  Make your space effective and comfortable. Find upcycled desks, shelving and chairs at Limelights in South Dennis (508.398.6668) orCottage Chic Resale in Hyannis.
  • Take breaks daily:  Clear your head with a walk around your building or to a local beach, or with an energizing yoga session – get in on the 2nd Annual 30 Day Global Yoga Challenge at a local studio or at home.
  • Mix it up:  Head to a local coffee shop once a week to get work done in a different environment. From Café Chew in Sandwich to Nirvana in Barnstable Village toBuckies in Dennisport and Harwich Port, there are plenty of conducive spots with free wi-fi.

10) Volunteer

There is certainly never a lack of volunteer opportunities on Cape Cod, so if becoming a more community – minded individual is on your 2014 resolution list, the question is not if there are opportunities on this sandy peninsula, but which of the many great local organizations connect to your passions and interests.

The best resource to find a volunteer opportunity on the Cape is through Cape Cod Volunteers. They are a nonprofit organization that matches people with organizations looking for individuals to fill volunteer needs. The opportunities, programs, and agencies range from animal welfare and environmental organizations to arts and culture groups and cancer awareness groups.

The site allows anyone and everyone to search for volunteer opportunities and Board openings posted by local nonprofit agencies. You create a “volunteer profile” to record your skills, interests, location, and availability, and local organizations list their wants and needs, making it convenient to search for and identify openings. You can also use the website to log your volunteer hours (if you need to keep track for your job) and set up automatic email notifications to alert you when an opportunity that might interest you is posted.

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