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Hobbyists practice the art of having fun


After a hard day's work, wouldn't it be nice to ... have some fun? But with only an hour or two to devote to it, what can you do?

You could have a hobby, or even an avocation. It's no longer the stuff of rich folks who collected expensive things and amused themselves with the arts. And it's not just for overly zealous eccentrics.

Today hobbyists have grown both in numbers and respectability.

One reason: Mental as well as physical fitness have become important to us. An aerobic workout will do well for your body. Exercise helps the mind some too, but not enough. The psyche needs its breaks for renewal, and it needs a holiday from duty and routine.

Further: Whether we like it or not, our retirement days are coming. Without some healthy obsession, we could fall into indifference and decline.

What beckons you after a day at work? What do you do when you have no more will to work? Go to the garden? Put together a model airplane? Work with watercolors? ...Or surrender your mind to the television set?

Winston Churchill said, "The cultivation of a hobby and new forms of interest is a policy of first importance. To be really happy and really safe, one ought to have at least two or three hobbies."

In his book, Painting as a Pastime, Churchill wrote, "Happy are the painters, for they shall not be lonely. Light and color, peace and hope, will keep them company to the end, or almost to the end, of the day."

Pastimes, like toy collecting, astronomy, quilting, bird-watching, or woodworking, seldom bring monetary rewards. They do something better. They enrich our souls.

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