Say Hello to a New Month, New Year, New Decade

By Marie Vandenberg, Publisher/Editor Macaroni Kid Clintonville, WI January 4, 2020

We say goodbye to another year and hello to a fresh new year and decade.  This is an especially big year for me, as I also said goodbye to my thirties.  I’ll be starting 2020 as a 40-year old mom and wife.  For me, looking ahead to the New Year requires a quick look back with a critical eye.  What worked well and what needs improvement and what just needs to stay in the past?

In January 2019, I joined 99Walks. There are so many weight-loss options, walking options, step-tracking technology, how do you pick one?  Why did I pick 99Walks? I have several reasons, but I’m going to focus on the main one.  99Walks is more than a step-tracking program.  Racking up a ton of steps is actually pretty easy in the grand scheme of things.  Park a little further away from the door at the store, take the long way around the store, etc.  This is more.  This is saying, “I am going for a walk.”  My family has picked up on that subtle difference.  My daughters will occasionally join me, or they’ll choose to go for one on their own.  I’ll never forget the day that I drove to the bus stop to pick up the kids.  The weather wasn’t very nice.  Before my 8-year-old daughter’s feet hit the ground, her first words to me were, “Mom, I had a bad day.  I’m walking home.”  Okay.  I followed her home.  By the time we got there, she was ready for the rest of her afternoon.  It was a 5-minute walk, but it was exactly what she needed. Another time,  I was having some trouble processing one of life’s challenges.  My sister and brother-in-law were visiting.  We asked my brother-in-law to watch the kids, my sister and I grabbed our gear and walked,  talked and did one of the “empowerment classes” available.  That ended up being a  3-mile walk, but by the time we got back, everything was much clearer and I had a plan for moving forward.  I look forward to continuing my journey with 99Walks.  

I love my journey with Macaroni Kid Clintonville.  I love exploring our towns.  I feel like I find a new treasure every time I travel to a different town in my territory.  I know that it’s hard to see how special something is when you see it every day.  That’s why they say to take a day and explore your town like you’re a tourist.  When we moved to Clintonville, if there wasn’t something available locally, it wasn’t difficult to go back to our hometown to pick it up. It was a habit.  Macaroni Kid has caused me to break that habit and support the businesses inside of my territory.  2019 also had me joining the Clintonville Chamber of Commerce, participating in the Farmers Market, Fall Frenzy and Meet and Greet with Santa!  I just have to say that I had so much fun at all of those events.  I loved seeing your children come by and try the activities I had planned, and see their smiles!  I use the site the same way that all of you do.  I check it to see what fun my family is going to do and grab the maps because I still don’t know where everything is. So, even if I don’t have a booth at an event, keep an eye out, there’s a good chance I’m there.  There is something special about working where you live and living where you work. 

Leading into 2020, I want Macaroni Kid Clintonville to represent more of what all of you want to see.  For those of you that have been with me for a while, is there something that I took out that you’d like me to bring back?  Whether you’ve been with me for a day or since day 1, what would you like to see or is there something you’d be okay with never seeing again?  Feel free to message me on Facebook or send me an e-mail at  I look forward to hearing from you!

I am excited for all the things that 2020 has to offer.  I am excited to show you the projects I’m working on.  To stay completely up to date, follow me on Facebook and Instagram.  We have a fun giveaway happening right now on Instagram