Resolving to Remember Sara Lee
With the New Year comes resolutions. Yes, we all make them whether silently or out loud they creep into our mind with the stealth ability of a Russian spy satellite. And they are there, embedded into our psyche lurking and smirking while we valiantly attempt to live up to our goals.
Good luck with that one.
Talk about setting oneself up for failure. Of course we all wax nostalgic at this time and, of course, the smartest resolution would be to break all your New Year’s resolutions, thereby setting oneself up for achievable success.
How do you keep a resolution? If you ask most people, they don’t.
Because of all the craziness of the last year, one might ponder the best way to ease into 2020. A new decade filled with new hope, but for what? How easy does life get when one finally realizes that the force Obi Won wished would be with you is gravity, and it is no friend to anyone over the age of 35.
The passing of time, thankfully, usually goes unnoticed. Most people mark the passage of years with key events in their lives. A wedding, baptism, Bar Mitzvah, divorce.
Yet looking back, it’s sometimes the small things we remember most: a smile from someone we love, a first kiss, the first time our baby writes on the walls with a marker, the first insult from our mother-in-law.
If it’s true we don’t realize what we’ve lost until it’s gone and never wake up until it’s too late, this may be a good time to take stock of what’s important, what makes us happy. Things we have previously taken for granted, like privacy. Hold on, I have to re-tape the front of my computer because they, whoever they are, are watching.
Okay, I’m back.
Taking for granted the friends who are there for us through bad times is a normal human characteristic; some more than others are guilty of this transgression. Perhaps a good resolution would be to just love and appreciate the people in our life who make it better and eliminate the toxic energy.
Oops, just a second, there is a drone outside my window and I need to close the blinds. That’s better.
It used to be automatic to just reach into the freezer at the grocery store and toss the Sara Lee Brownies into my basket. I never thought much about the process. (We all do it—hoping no one notices that you are buying something fattening when you should be dieting.)
Once home, the brownies were always perfectly melted, ready to open and scrape the chocolate off the lid.
You’d cut a small square, but sometimes you found yourself cutting too deeply and making a slit in the aluminum tray. No problem, they never leaked through once back in the freezer.
So many memories, so many bad moments, so many broken things Sara Lee fixed.
She was always there.
Those chocolate brownies existed for a reason; they served a purpose and worked. They comforted and caressed each weary problem with a chocolate snuggle.
I can’t remember the exact moment I reached into my grocer’s freezer to grab a tray and they were gone. Maybe they’re out of them, I thought. I’ll try next time.
I searched the store for a substitute.
There was none.
How could this be happening?
The next week I tried again.
A week later a different store.
I was filled with a sinking feeling, an inkling of doom that perhaps something bad had happened. Yet it was true.
No more Sara Lee Frozen Brownies.
No more help for a bad day, PMS, tight jeans or a haircut from hell. No chocolaty friend to comfort me in my time of cocoa need. No brownie shoulder to cry on.
I hadn’t appreciated what I had and now it was gone.
The thought still plagues me that perhaps more than Sara Lee Brownies have slipped out of my life.
What else have I missed? What other treasures have escaped my notice while I wasn’t looking?
Where am I most of the time? Where are we all? What are we paying attention to anyway?
What’s that? Oh my Lord, a pop up just jumped up on screen with a picture of a blouse I looked at online a week ago. “Get thee gone, Google!”
Okay I’m back, so if Sara came back, would I appreciate her now? Can any of these questions ever be answered?
Probably not, so I’ll just move on.
New Year is always a time to look back and take stock of what was, and plan for what may be.
How to best do this is a great feat and yet I shall attempt to do so.
I will strive to:
Start off the year happy. Make resolutions that are easily doable and resolve to be nicer to me and everyone else.
We all make mistakes; I have a list longer than Harvey Weinstein’s victims. Next time I want to beat myself up, I’ll remember there are enough people waiting in line to do it for me. Call someone to beat you up and there is always someone to oblige.
So how do we make it a great year, even without Sara Lee?
I’m going to download a favorite song from high school or college then play it in the car extra loud with the window down.
Reinvent myself. This is something so easy for a woman to do. A new hairstyle or color, a new lipstick, nail polish or new Spanx and I’m good to go.
Men well, not much to do there, but the proverbial new red sports car is still a good choice.
I won’t resolve to lose or gain weight! Pressure is the worst thing for diets. I have embraced what I call retail cardio. I go to the mall and walk around shopping for hours.
Great exercise and it’s fun. I don’t even realize I’m moving around and doing something healthy.
I’ll call someone with whom I’ve lost touch and wish them a ‘Happy New Year.’
I imagine it’s a good thing to take stock of the things that aren’t as I’d want them to be. If there are changes that need to be made in a job, home, appearance or relationships, make the changes. Nothing has to move in an instant; change does take time so I’ll have to practice patience.
Know the difference between what can and cannot be changed and find a way to deal with what cannot. That’s a toughie for sure.
Start each day with ten minutes for myself. Do yoga, meditate, pray, listen to a favorite song, have a special blend of coffee, but start each day on a positive note.
I always try to combine unpleasant or tedious routine chores with favorite things. While paying bills, I play a favorite CD or watch a favorite movie.
“What’s that SIRI? No, I don’t want to make a call right now!”
I shall attempt to eat one—only one—forbidden food a week and once a week won’t play havoc with my diet.
I’ll save a five dollars a week and at Christmas time buy some toys for needy children with the money.
I will compliment strangers, because they may be having a bad day and kind words may be just what they need to feel better.
Maybe a new hobby; it’s relaxing. Take up painting…what if Picasso had put things off this long?
I’ll buy beads and make that amazing necklace I’ve been dreaming about.
Eat more chocolate and try a new dessert recipe.
Resolve to see the glass ‘half full.’ Negative thoughts breed negative results. Life shouldn’t be such a battle. I’ll lay back and let life happen sometimes. The earth will revolve without me controlling it each second.
There is a lesson to be learned from the demise of Sara Lee Brownies. This year I’m stocking my freezer with Ben and Jerry’s Cherry Garcia.
I must promise myself to appreciate the people I love and care about, before they too are taken off the supermarket shelves.
Just a minute, Alexa wants to tell me something. “Excuse me! I do not look especially bloated today.”
Sorry everyone, but I have to make a trip to the garbage to throw something away so have a fabulous new year.
“Come to Momma, Alexa, I just want to take you on a little trip…”
A very happy and healthy New Year and new decade, everyone!