This year, let your calendar remind you to try new seasonal activities
That's right, remind yourself to remember things! A brilliant use of the electronic calendar, from Anne:
This morning I had a whole list of "next year for Christmas I want to ...." things I want to change/try/do better. But I can never seem to remember the things that I wanted to change when next year actually
So I sat down and created a Google Calendar appointment for Christmas next year, and in the description filled in a list of "things I want to do differently" including links to crafts I want to try and blogs with ideas I want to implement. Then I set the alert to email me three weeks, two weeks, and one week before Christmas, so just as we're starting to plan for it again I'll have those ideas dropped into my inbox, long after I've forgotten that I wanted to remember them.
(Works for other holidays too, obviously.)
I have been using my calendar this way for all sorts of things. When my kids wistfully talk about wanting to fly kites during the summer, I plop a reminder on the calendar to fly kites on July 1 (with a second reminder on May 15 to find our kite or buy a new one).
I have a reminder to shop for new snow gear at the end of Winter when it's on deep discount.
I do this for birthday gift ideas as well -- in the description field of the calendar entry for people's birthdays, I write in gift ideas, or, if I've already got them, the names of the actual gifts and where they're stored. Because I've been known to pat myself on the back for buying a gift ahead of time only to misplace it until it's too late.
(You can adapt this hack to your paper calendar if you're willing to fill it up with lots of non-appointment reminders.)
This hack brings to mind something I wrote for MyLifeScoop last year: Create a "Possibilities" Calendar for all the little stuff you might want to do, but aren't ready to add to the hardscape of your schedule.