Growing up in Southern California, every year we children would anxiously look forward to the Rose Parade. The floats, the bands and the equestrian units are so exhilarating to watch. I hope that you tuned in this year and saw the amazing artistry and animation on the gorgeous floats.

All of us have goals, hopes and dreams and a new year is the ideal time to put them into practice. What goals would you like to accomplish? Do you want to exercise more, eat healthier foods, save more money, spend more time reading the Scripture, or take a class at Northwest Florida State College?

Our lists for self-improvement could be endless. We all have areas in which we would like to improve.


I generally pick out a few items to work on; here is my 2018 list:

• Save more money; be frugal with what I spend

• Get rid of items we no longer use; donate them to a good cause

• Spend more time reading the Bible and in prayer

• Share my musical gifts more frequently with others

• Make the time to visit those I love and care about

• Share my faith in Christ with those who need Him; our lives can change in a split second

• Listen more and talk less

• Ride my bike more


My list could go on and on, but I know from previous experience that I need to carefully choose the items I am most likely to work on.

As a group, we can be kinder to one another and display good manners. We can smile at every person we meet and lend a helping hand. Do you have elderly neighbors that could use help taking their trash can to the curb and back, or need you to pick up groceries for them? Many little ways we can help others take little time or effort and make a huge difference to those who need help.

Don't forget to change the batteries in your smoke alarms. They need to be changed on a yearly basis and the first part of January is a good time to do this simple task so the smoke alarms will work properly. 

Janice Lynn Crose, a former accountant, lives in Crestview with her husband, Jim; her two rescue collies, Shane and Jasmine; and two cats, Kathryn and Prince Valiant.