New Goals for the New Year


On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me… not a Dyson.

He didn’t give it to me on the first day of Christmas either… this year, last year, or the year before that.


Santa forgot to leave my dream vacuum cleaner under the tree yet again, but I’m not going to let it ruin my 2012… just the remaining days of 2011.

I’m kidding.

Sort of.


Not really.

In all seriousness, my 7-year-old was quite upset that Santa forgot to leave behind the cleaning machine I’ve lusted over for the past four years.

I had honestly forgotten that I whispered my wish to St. Nick after my daughter bounded off his lap during a pre-Christmas visit to the mall.

She was the one who put me on the spot that day, forcing me to tell Santa what would bring a smile to my face on Christmas morning.

I should have asked for world peace. There’s no way my daughter would have remembered that one.

Regardless, I decided to turn my daughter’s disappointment into a teachable moment. Today, I introduced my second grader to the world of New Year’s resolutions.

To make it easier on my resolution virgin, I decided to take the plunge with her. In 2012, neither one of us will dwell on the things we don’t have. Rather, we will spend our days being thankful for all the treasures—-material and otherwise—-that are bestowed upon us.

It may sound corny, but childhood behavior experts say that making New Year’s resolutions is a great way to teach kids about responsibility and the importance of working toward a goal.

What’s more, selecting a New Year’s resolution can be an amusing process. For example, initially, I suggested that my daughter resolve to do the dishes every night in 2012. Her recommendation for my New Year’s resolution: that I serve ice cream for dinner every night instead of vegetables.


If you are working with younger children, don’t make the resolution process a chore. Instead, focus on the fun that can be had by coming up with a goal and spending the new year trying to accomplish it. Talk to your son or daughter about special interests, and then help him figure out how he can translate those activities into goals for 2012.

What are some of your New Year’s resolutions?

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.