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Dawn's Column Revelry And Resolutions, Anyone?
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It seems like everywhere I turn, people are saying they "can't believe it's 2009." Why do the years go by faster as we get older? Part of me is still stuck in 2008, writing 2008 on my checks, and lamenting that I'm going to have another birthday this year. Not that I'm complaining about having a birthday, that's a good thing because it means I'm alive and all, but it's just the ever-increasing number that identifies my years on the planet that gets tough to swallow.

Weeks later, people are still talking about their New Year's Eve celebrations. I've always been a night owl, but I'm just not a late night reveler anymore. Sometimes I think this maturity thing is for the birds.

This New Year's Eve, my significant other and I toasted each other and the New Year with a glass of good champagne - but that was around 6 p.m. I suppose that one good thing about being older is that you afford to drink the good stuff.

Following our champagne toast, he and I went to dinner in Stockton and then came back home to "ring it in." After getting home, we didn't finish our champagne but had hot cocoa instead. Then after channel surfing between a couple of New Year's Eve shows from New York and being disappointed with the hosts and the entertainment, we decided to watch Clint Eastwood in "Hang 'Em High." I was more than happy to do the countdown with Clint on the TV. About ten minutes to midnight, I realized that the movie wasn't going to be over until 1 a.m., there was no way I was going to stay up that much longer. So at ten 'till, I said goodnight to Clint and his machismo and headed off to bed.

Then it struck me that as soon as I got to sleep, my phone would be ringing from friends and family who were still up. I waited until midnight and sent out a few text messages to their cell phones and then wisely turned off my phone, knowing that some of them would respond well after I had gone to sleep.

The sleeping part took a while though, as neighbors were setting off fireworks that sounded like cannons.

Fortunately, in the morning there was plenty of champagne for mimosas.

Some people I've talked to went to big parties on New Year's Eve, spilling details about overindulging in various adult beverages and the ensuing antics of party guests. Conversely, one couple I know laughed about how they had everything ready for the big night: champagne and chocolate covered strawberries they'd had shipped in. But then they both fell asleep before midnight without ever having had any champagne or strawberries.

Along with the absence of late night revelry, New Year's resolutions are another thing that have gone by the wayside with me. I don't really make resolutions anymore. When I was younger, I used to make a laundry list of resolutions. I can't really remember what any of them were, though.

It seems like a lot of people I know are the same way now, too. Some of us have gained a little wisdom with our age and have figured out that we're really just not cut out for keeping resolutions when the year rolls over.

Last year, after going many years without making resolutions, I think I made a sort of resolution to get back in shape, and it was coincidentally at New Year. I did follow through on that one.

Working out is probably the one resolution that people do continue to make year after year, even if they don't make other resolutions anymore. I discovered this when I went to my bootcamp-style workout class the other night. A whole slew of new people came in to subject themselves to the CrossFit workout. I use the word "subject" because it's a very tough, albeit very effective, workout. Not everyone returned the next night, but those who stick with it will likely get quick results, accomplishing that resolution to get fit in short order.

I think that a good part of the problem with resolutions and why people can't stick with them is because they don't see results right away or they have to suffer some sort of initial discomfort. Giving up revelry is tough. So nowadays, I just try to go with revelry in moderation.

Dawn M. Henley is a staff reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Riverbank News, and The Escalon Times. She may be reached at or by calling 847-3021.