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Editorial: What to do over Winter Break

Whether you’re painting, knitting, or investing in an adult (or children’s) coloring book, channeling your inner artist is never a bad idea. Doing the fine arts has been associated with reducing stress and anxiety – which we probably all need right now – and increasing cognitive function. Not to mention that you can do it with (or without) other people. Maybe try throwing a COVID-19 friendly Bob Ross Zoom party with your friends! The possibilities are endless.

Read a book.

One thing that we never seem to have enough time for is reading. Let Winter Break be your chance to finally catch up on all the books that you really wanted to read but haven’t had yet. Buy a book from an independent bookstore (not Amazon!) Or borrow an e-book from your local library. Most libraries have thousands of virtual titles that you can borrow for free. All you need is a library card.

Learn a new language.

If you are disappointed with the lack of study opportunities abroad after COVID-19, we completely understand. Prepare for future travel opportunities and learn an important skill by learning a new language during your break! Downloading Duolingo (#notsponsored) is just one of many free ways to improve your foreign language skills. Imagine you are in the spring semester and can speak French or Spanish. What a flex.

Learn to cook.

Tired of eating ramen and frozen pizza for dinner every night? We are too. Hone your cooking skills by trying out a few new recipes during your break. Your stomach will thank you later.

PS Your university sponsored subscription to the New York Times gives you access to NYT Cooking (and the NYT Cooking app in particular). You’re welcome.

Become a Plant Parent!

Go to your local nursery and pick up some plants! Indoor plants have been shown to improve your mood, reduce stress, and improve indoor air quality. Also, learning how to propagate plants during the holiday season can be a great skill. Do you need a present for a friend? Boom. A pothos. Just tell them to water it!

We hope that you are familiar with a few different ways to spend your winter break. It’s important to note, however, that some typical break activities this year are unfortunately not safe options. Please avoid holding or attending mass gatherings and remember to do your part in combating the spread of COVID-19.

The safety of our friends and family members should never be compromised for a party. There will be plenty of time to celebrate in the future, but now we want to protect ourselves and our community.

@dthopinion

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