Things to Do in January
Here is a page of things to do in January. Not just places to visit, or fun activities, it is also a reminder of the little things that are time to do around this time of year. Take a look around.
January is named for Janus, the Roman god of doorways and arches. There are two sides to Janus, just like there are two sides to a doorway.
Fiscal Things to Do In January
- Prepare for Tax Season
List the W2s, 1099s and interest income statements you expect. Check off each one as it arrives. The list will keep you from preparing your tax returns until you have all you data in hand. [tip from Reader's Digest]
- Tame Your Credit Card Debt
Credit card debt is, outside of payday loans, the most onerous debt around. Do this any way you can. Reader's Digest suggests paying off your credit card debt with a low-rate home-equity line of credit. On a five thousand dollar loan, this can cut yo
- File Your Quarterly Tax Returns (if applicable)
You have until December 15th to make your 4th quarter estimated tax payments for last year.
Now That The Holidays Are Over
It's somewhat of a relief. The gifts were given and gotten, the family has come and gone. I know you thought it was all over. Think again.
- Go through your decorations. Throw away anything too ratty for next year and box up everything else.
- Write thank you notes.
- Download (or develop) your holiday photos. Don't forget to share them with friends.
- Restock the liquor cabinet.
- Go through the fridge. Get rid of the left over turkey.
January is National Blood Donor Month
You can - and should - do this in any month, but if you are not in the habit, now is a good time to start. You don't have to go to the Red Cross. You can donate at a lot of hospitals - just call first. There is a chronic shortage of blood almost everywhere, probably because blood can only be stored for just over a month. And, of course, there is always the free cookies.
Keep Your Capricorn Friends
- Send Birthday Cards
Browse and send fun, animated greeting cards from Hallmark eCards. Find eCards for any holiday, tone, or occasion with the quality you expect from Hallmark.
- or Gifts
If they are really good friends, you can send them gifts. A lot of on line companies will let you specify when you want something to ship out and may not even charge you until it actually ships. Click the above link if you would like gift suggestions
Watch the Bowl Games in January
Even if football isn't your thing, this is a great excuse for a party. And football is a lot more interesting if you are there with people who care AND who can explain the rules. Otherwise, it's just a bunch of guys jumping on each other.
- Watch the Rose Bowl
And while you're at it, watch the Tournament of Roses, a spectacular parade of floats made entirely of flowers.
- Watch the Gator Bowl
Get all the official information at this official website. This year, the Gater Bowl is being hosted by Taxslayer.com. I use them for my taxes and find them quite good, but I don't like bowl games being named after corporations.
- Watch The Tostidos Fiesta Bowl
- Watch The Sugar Bowl
- Watch The Orange Bowl
The Biggest Bowl of All
Do you watch the Superbowl?
- Go skiing.
- Go sledding.
- Build a snowfort.
- Get in a snowball fight.
- Join a tobogganing club.
- Be a shovel smarty-pants: don't wait for the snow to start piling up - start shoveling before there are two inches on the ground.
Become a Snow Spotter
If you are in snow country (in the United States), join citizen scientists and the National Weather Service to help keep track of the weather. Report snow and storm conditions here.
Handy Snow-Related Items
The safest sleds are ones that you can steer, though you should also wear a helmet and only go down feet first. Also, don't aim for the trees. You'll need more than one shovel if you don't want to do it all yourself, but I'm guessing people will fight over the wheeled shovel. The other items listed below aren't as fun, but they are still necessary.
Special Days of January
Used to be that most days of the year were run of the mill. Sure, you had your 4th of July and your Thanksgiving, but it was never more than one or two special days a month. Boy, has that changed! Also, January is apparently National Oatmeal Month.
- January 1st - New Year's Day, first day of the Gregorian calendar (also, the end of Kwanzaa)
- January 6th - Three Kings Day (also known as the 12th Day of Christmas)
- January 16th - Martin Luther King Jr Day (celebrated the third Monday of January)
- January 20th - Inauguration Day in the USA in years divisible by 4
- January 21st - Hugging Day
- January 23rd - Handwriting Day (since 1977)
- January 24th - Compliment Day (not a real holiday, but not a bad idea, either)
- January 29th - National Puzzle Day
Poll: Yummy Days
Which "day" in January are you most likely to celebrate?
Get Outta Town - Far, Far Outta Town
Here is a sampling of festivals around the world.
- Battle Evil With Turnips (Spain)
On January 19, a small village in Spain pummels a Jarramplas (villain) with turnips. Click through for all the details.
- Flander's Bommel Festival
Epiphany in Ronse means more than just taking down the old Christmas decorations: the inhabitants seize the opportunity for yet another party. Pride of place goes to the "Bommels," or Corks, characters dressed in monumental costumes whose main purpos
- Berlin's Annual Dance Festival
This site about Tanzetag Berlin is in German, but it is basically a choreography showcase for all dancers in Berlin.
- Croatia's Carnival of Rijeka
Click on the "English" link on the bottom to get to the English version of this site. The Carnival madness starts with the Carnival queen contest and the opening ceremony with the Mayor's simbolic delivery of the City keys to the Master of the Carni
- Monte Carlo's International Circus Festival
Created in 1974 by Prince Rainier III of Monaco, the International Festival of the Circus of Monte Carlo gives circuses and clowns a chance to show their stuff.
- Italy's Putignano Carnival
A parade of papier-mache floats.
- Harbin Ice Festival (China)
Harbin, the capital and largest city of Heilongjiang Province in Northeast China, is now home to the biggest ice and snow festival in the world.
Valentine's Day is in Two Weeks!
I know it isn't in January, but if you celebrate Valentine's Day, you should start planning now. Last minute reservations on Valentine's Day are a bear to get.
By the way, that is my brother and sister-in-law at their wedding.
January is Purported to Be... - (among others)
- Family Fit Lifestyle Month
- National Mentoring Month
- National Glaucoma Month
- National Radon Action Month (according to the EPA)
Thank You Notes
I said it before, I'll say it again: Don't forget to send thank you notes to everyone that gave you a gift.
Celebrate Australia Day! - January is summertime down under
Australia Day commemorates the arrival of Captain Arthur Phillip and the First Fleet, comprising 11 ships and around 1,350 people, who arrived at Botany Bay between 18 and 20 January 1788 to set up a penal colony for Britain. Australia Day is celebrated throughout Australia on 26 January each year. (That's from Australia's tourism web site.)
HOWEVER: There were actually already people in Australia, many of whom don't want to celebrate the day their land was invaded. In addition, since Australia is no longer British or a penal colony, there is no reason to commemorate that particular date. (This might just be my bias coming out. After all, in the US, we commemorate the day we gained independence from the British.)
Should Australia move their national holiday to a different date?
What have I missed?