January To-Do List

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1. Donate your surplus. City dwellers in small spaces know the post-holiday routine: Assess the mound of gifts, admit there is not room for them, decide what to recycle or give away, repeat.

2. Do a safety check. Now that the heat is cranking all the time, it’s a good idea to test the batteries on your fire alarms and carbon dioxide monitors. Older equipment should be serviced each year.

3. Hit the library. There’s nothing better than snuggling up with a good book, especially when the weather is frightful. Head to the library and browse the stacks for a suitable companion or two.

4. Make the b-list your a-list. Benefit corporations, or B corps, are companies that have decided to contribute to the common good while pursuing their bottom line. You have a choice to help support their community-centered work by consciously choosing to patronize their businesses, whether it’s clothing or cleaning services.

5. Tend to your containers. The heat of summer is long gone, but the plants in your patio pots and other gardening containers still need your help. If you have a collection of perennials that you want to see again in the spring, make sure you water occasionally during the winter months.

6. Make a volunteer plan. Many people give money to charities at the end of the year, but they can use your help year-round. Make a list of the causes that you care most deeply about, and then ask yourself: How will I contribute this year? The dark days of January are a good time for self-reflection and gathering strength for the year ahead. Be the change you want to see.

7. Recycle your Christmas tree. Philadelphia doesn’t have curbside pick up for Christmas trees yet, but they still have options for keeping it out of the landfill. From Jan. 6 to 13 there are city sanitation centers that will take them—visit the Philadelphia Streets website to find out more.

8. Bust out the board games. Remember when you spent days upon days with your friends and siblings playing Monopoly when you couldn’t be outside? It’s just as fun now as it was then!

9. Take in some art on the parkway. The Winter Fountains exhibition running through March 18 includes four massive, glowing outdoor domes stationed at various spots on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway that project surreal video imagery at night.

10. Keep calm and drink some tea. If you’re taking a break from all the holiday excess and libations, try out some fresh loose-leaf tea or an interesting herbal mix as your nightly nightcap.