Clutter and Happiness
We don’t need anyone to tell us that clutter and happiness are related. Usually the less clutter you have to more happiness. But that doesn’t mean we all want to live in sterile environments… but with inexpensive goods available we have all gotten used to retail therapy…which leads to too much stuff. This isn’t anything new, I wrote about the same thing last year, from Arizona.
So really, it is kind of MEAN to give your family and friends anything. Right? Well, maybe not anything….you can give an experience! This way you get to go out do something fun, and not just clutter up your already cluttered home. Also, if you buy two tickets that means you get to go too, and that way you get the gift too! So, it sounds like a win/win, no?
Here is a list of places you could choose to go to or buy tickets to go to with whoever you would normally struggle to find a gift. There are links for every suggestion, use them!!
Dinner and a show? Mount Baker Theater, the iconic, gorgeous theater in downtown Bellingham has a plethora of performances you can buy tickets for. In 2019 it looks like STOMP will be performing, or you could buy ticket’s to Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Mount Baker Theater also has summer camps for kids …if your child loves theater this could be a wonderful gift!
A Discover Pass should be something that becomes a tradition to buy every vehicle in your home. This way it can be left in every glove box and will always be available for the afternoon hike or weekend get away. Be careful to always hang your Discover Pass when parking….forgetting it can cost you a pretty ticket!
Ferry Tickets might not sound like something you could or should give as a gift, but I highly disagree. I have taken many day trips and weekend trips that have started with a ferry ride. The day trips I have made to San Juan Island or Orcas Island started with a ferry ride, and for both trips the ferry ride was the most expensive part. Having tickets for the ferry, or a gift certificate will motivate you to make the plans to get out to the San Juan Islands or the Olympic peninsula for a day or weekend trip. We live in such a gorgeous place there is no reason we aren’t all seeing something new every weekend!
Kayaking or SUP (Stand Up Paddleboard) rentals are another idea for a day of fun with loved ones. For inexpensive rates for an hour or two you can rent a single or double kayak or SUP board from The Community Boating Center or CBC down by Marine Park and the train/bus station. This is a wonderful way to get some exercise, some laughs, and spend the day with friends or loved ones.
If you are a member of Bellingham Living, my Facebook group, then you know that I LOVE the Good Time Girls Bellinghistory tours. I have been on several of them, and thoroughly enjoyed each and every one, and would do them all again because I am sure I missed a lot of what was said. The facts that are shared are interesting, shocking, funny, and give a really different picture of the place we call home. It made me fall more deeply in love with this wonderful place to know the crazy people that made it! There are tours all year round, pick one, buy the tickets, and have a day or evening you won’t forget!
Belingham’s Circus Guild was not something that had hit my radar prior to the Halloween show this year. I was really missing out! Their Halloween show was absolutely fantastic. I was open mouthed with awe of the performances, and my belly hurt from laughing. What a surprisingly fun and spectacular night! Their next big show is Valentine’s Day. I suggest you make your plans early…and gift those tickets before the new year!
There is also the Bellingham Theater Guild for you to explore. This offers the opportunity to give the gift of live theater to your loved ones for less money than you would spend going to see a show at Mount Baker Theater. The theater guild’s tickets start as low as $10 per performance. Or you can buy the gift of membership for you and your family, and that is a tax deductible. So you can give a gift that you can tax deduct, feel good about, and help your community all at once! On top of that see some great shows and performances!
The UPfront Theatre/Comedy Club, I have heard from so many people that I need to go here, but I haven’t yet. Maybe someone will get me tickets this holiday season. They are affordable, and lots of different shows to choose from! They also offer classes, which would be a wonderful gift to those people that THINK they are hilarious….but aren’t nearly as funny as they think they are. Not like me, I’m obviously naturally hilarious.
Whatcom Museum is another place that has been on my “to do” list, but I still haven’t done. I have heard from so many once I do I won’t be disappointed. You can buy tickets or a membership, but I think the more we know about the place we live and love, the more we will feel connected to it and love it. Plus it might keep dementia at bay if we keep learning, so buy tickets!
Ski/Snowboard lessons are for anyone you know! You don’t have to be a child to take lessons! Maybe you’re like me and it has been 20 or so years since you have ridden a chair lift. I am not naive enough to think that my 48 year old body is going to remember how to shred the hills like my 27 year old body did. A lesson or two might get me out there, remembering why I used to love it so much. Buy lessons for everyone, make a weekend of it! Mount Baker is right there, we are luckier than we know, now let’s get out there and take advantage of it!
Fort Casey is something that I don’t think I would have chosen to go to, but I highly recommend it. I am not a WWII buff, at all, by any means….but to be able to walk the grounds and learn a little what it was like for soldiers stationed there was really powerful, and interesting, and just like most places in WA state, absolutely gorgeous. This is a fun day trip, but don’t forget your Discover Pass!!
Have you walked all of the trails all over Bellingham? How about Whatcom county? Probably none of us have done that! But if you haven’t walked all of the trails around Bellingham I promise you that you are missing out. There are SO MANY excellent, fairly flat trails that are so fun to walk. My favorite was walking from Whatcom Falls Park to Twin Sister’s Brewery, then taking a Lyft back to my car at Whatcom Falls park. You can even bring your dog on that day trip! Make a plan, pick a date, and give a trail walk this season….you will create memories, feel more connected to your community, and get some exercise….all for FREE.
Bellingham has beautiful, stunning parks. When is the last time you went for a picnic? What’d a live performance in a park? Walked the park and reconnected with nature? Plan a date to do those things, and give the gift of your time, and slowing down, and appreciating and loving where we live and all of the beauty it provides!
I provided links to EVERY suggestion I made, so use them. Give things this holiday season that will bring joy, connect you to our community, to nature, and to each other. None of us need more STUFF, and STUFF isn’t good for us. Let’s be grateful for what we can enjoy and experience right here. I hope to see you out there!
Also, always remember if you need help buying or selling your home, I would love to help! Feel free to take a peek at homes on the market in Bellingham HERE!