Leap Day: 24 things you can do with 24 extra hours

February 24, 2020

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Every four years, we get an extra day in the calendar year. So, this year, instead of 365 days, we’ll have 366 days. While the day often passes without much notice, consider how you can make Leap Day, Feb. 29, special this year. What do you want to do with your 24 extra hours?

Here are 24 suggestions.

1. Try that new recipe: Have you had a savory soup or decadent baked good recipe bookmarked? Take advantage of the extra day to finally try it out.

2. Host a dinner: Leap Day may not be an official holiday, but it’s a good excuse to invite more fellowship. Host a lunch or dinner and turn the extra day into a celebration!

3. Call someone far away: Most of us have loved ones scattered across the country. Use your extra hours to check in with someone you love.

4. Brush up on your Leap Year facts: Did you know that the Summer Olympics always occur during a Leap Year? The practice of having a Leap Year dates all the way back to 46 BC with a decree from Julius Caesar.

5. Find a new outing: What free activities have you not had time to try? Find a new museum, park or exhibit and take the entire family.

6. Plan an activity: If more family time is on your list of goals, this is the perfect time to plan something special. Go on a hike, visit the beach, or play a game at home.

7. Play leap frog: Do you have young children? They’re sure to get a giggle out of playing leap frog on Leap Day. You may even start a new tradition!

8. Send a handwritten card: Texts and emails are wonderful ways to keep in touch, but when was the last time you mailed someone a note just to say you were thinking of them?

9. Set goals for the next Leap Year: Do you need more than one year to complete a resolution? Start a new practice of Leap Year goals. Just make sure you set a reminder to check back on those goals in 2024.

10. Catch up on a good book: You only get 24 extra hours once every four years. Lean into letting these hours be unplanned and take time to catch up on some reading.

11. Unplug from social media: Less screen time is something we could all likely use. Take these 24 extra hours to completely unplug and rest.

12. Create a time capsule: What memories do you want to hold on to? Make sure to seal your time capsule and label not to open until the next Leap Day.

13. Spend time stargazing: The reason we have a Leap Day at all is because of the Earth’s orbit and its effect on the calendar. This would be the perfect time to look upward?

14. Celebrate leap babies: Even if you don’t know someone who was born on Feb. 29, you can still bake some cupcakes to celebrate Leap Day birthdays.

15. Tap into your creativity: When was the last time you colored in a coloring book or drew a picture? Get in touch with your creative side.

16. Listen to music: We often have music playing while we’re doing something else. Try sitting still, closing your eyes and enjoying your favorite song.

17. Indulge in a nap: A whole extra day is 24 extra hours to catch up on your rest. To avoid grogginess, set an alarm for 20-30 minutes to catch a quick power nap.

18. Do a puzzle: Did you know puzzles can improve memory, increase IQ, lower stress and improve your mood?

19. Take a long walk: Especially if the day brings good weather, take a long walk around your neighborhood. Bring a loved one along for good conversation or enjoy the alone time.

20. Create a summer reading list: Start browsing for the best books of the last year and make a list. Placing an order early ensures optimal vacation relaxation when the time comes.

21. Put together a care package: Most of us know someone who could use a little pick-me-up. Put together a care package for a loved one to let them know they’re in your thoughts.

22. Play an instrument: As life gets busier, sometimes we put our instruments away. Pull the guitar out of the closet, dust off your clarinet and enjoy making a joyful (even if not necessarily skillful) noise.

23. Stretch for five minutes: Stretching for five minutes each day can give you more energy as well as promote calm and relaxation. After those five minutes, you may feel more motivated and productive.

24. Write a gratitude list: Identify the top three things you’re thankful for. Consider sending a letter to someone to express gratitude. Share your gratitude lists as a family.

Life is a gift. This Leap Day, consider how you can make each minute count.