My Year of YES

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We are officially four months into the year – how are your New Year’s resolutions holding up? Are you eating healthier? Working out consistently? Unplugging more? Me either. I stopped setting resolutions a few years ago – they just never came to fruition for me. I did however set a word for the year. Know what my 2020 word was? “Present.” I wanted to be more PRESENT for my family. Holy moly did I blow that goal out of the water. I was home every day and yes as present as I’ll ever be. 

My 2021 word? YES. I’m saying YES to it all. We are doing it all this year. We spent so much of the last year saying no (and rightfully so – there was so much unknown about the pandemic). But as we recently “celebrated” a trip around the sun for the start of the pandemic, now is the time to (safely and within reason of course) pivot to say yes, more.  

What does that mean for the DeCastros? For me it means yes to more play dates, yes to more dance classes and soccer and gymnastics and a million other activities to keep a four-year-old entertained. For me it means saying I’m in for being more active in my community by joining another board. It means yes to more day trips exploring all four corners of our state and yes to connecting with friends I haven’t seen in years. Yes means an impromptu AirBnB rental just for a change of scenery for a night or weekend trips to the main library. It means leaving the dishes in the sink an extra night to sit outside and talk to neighbors, it’s let’s do it to full-fledged four-year-old makeovers or spending an afternoon walking among the flowers. It means yep to kids’ birthday parties, date nights and finding our own adventures.

And here’s the thing. Saying yes doesn’t need to mean big trips, huge time commitments, risks in social distancing or massive expenses. Say sure to serving ice cream for dinner one night, or taking a walk through a Metro Park, or listening to a new podcast (I recommend Crime Junkies) or pitching a tent in the backyard for a Friday night camp out. Maybe it means making more crafts together, or more glitter (yay!), volunteering, letting the dog (or kids) sleep in bed with you for the night, or visiting someplace you’ve never been

The impact a tiny three letter word can have on your life is pretty remarkable. Saying yes to more has opened my heart and in turn made me a better friend, wife and mom. There are eight months left in the year. How can you start by saying YES today? Personally, I recommend chocolate ice cream for dinner (with extra sprinkles).

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Amanda DeCastro has called Columbus, Ohio home her entire life. She currently lives with her husband and four-year-old daughter Samantha in Grove City, where they love to share everything there is to do south of Columbus and beyond on their Instagram handle @BusyInGroveCity. In addition to sharing their favorite things to do around town, Amanda and Samantha stay busy making kids crafts - and they truly live by the motto “the messier the better!” When Amanda isn’t shuttling her daughter from activity to activity, she can be found working part-time at Spectrum News 1 OH where she heads up community relations. An elementary school principal’s wife, Amanda is also involved with the South-Western City Schools Educational Foundation board and serves on the advisory committee for the South-Western City Schools Career Academy Interactive Media Design program. A Capital University grad, she is also involved with her alma mater serving as a frequent guest speaker and mentor for current public relations and marketing students.

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