Baby It’s Cold Outside

winter2Brrrrr! Yesterday, winter finally arrived in my part of the U.S. north. I truly shouldn’t complain. December and early January have been unbelievably nice with many days in the upper 40s and 50s (Fahrenheit) and plenty of sun. Instead of snow we’ve had rain. I’m grateful.

But yesterday when I woke up I discovered we had our first real snow of the season.  I was suddenly faced with having to use all of my old “stay warm in cold weather” strategies; I have one set for staying warm outside and another for inside.

Outside, there’s the obvious need to switch to my heavier winter coats (down was called for yesterday). Due to the snow (and lack of plowing on campus sidewalks) I put on snow boots with fuzzy warm lining. Thick ugly socks added a bit of toastiness to my feet (more about warm feet later). A thin pair of gloves topped by a larger pair of mittens helped keep my hands warm. Finally, a very wide scarf wrapped multiple times around my neck and lower face finished things off. I carried a small knit hat in case I needed it (usually only when temps are below 10). With all that on I was quite fine for tromping from my car to my office and later around town a bit.

But it was when I got home that I really needed to deal with the cold. I try to conserve energy so keep my heat set relatively low. But while I haven’t adjusted the thermometer in the last week my apartment felt absolutely frigid in comparison to the day before. Even my cat Princess was unhappy, and she has lots of fur. I tried a variety of things to warm up including multiple lawyers of tops, two pairs of socks, and a nice warm cup of tea.

While these all helped, I finally pulled out my tried and true I’m freezing technique. I heated up a microwave heating pad and put it over my feet. Within minutes I was toasty warm. I really don’t understand why this works. I’ve always heard that you lose heat through your head (hence the need for the hats I rarely wear). But for me, if my feet are warm, I’m warm. Last night before I went to bed I heated it up again and put it on my feet under the bed. Nice!

Today, in addition to periodically putting the heating pad on my feet, I’m planning on warming up my insides. Homemade black bean soup is already started.

Has it been cold where you live? What techniques are you using to keep warm?


12 thoughts on “Baby It’s Cold Outside

  1. Tee

    Since we’re basically from the same area, I know exactly what you mean, LinnieGayl. It’s been a delightful winter to this point and we need some time for our blood to thicken to get used to the colder temps. It’ll happen; always does. In the meantime, I did kick up the automatic thermostat one notch an hour earlier in the evening than it would normally change. Didn’t take the dog for a walk because of the snowy sidewalks, but I’ll get used to that, too. The wind made the inside of the house feel cooler; and already this morning I feel it’s quite cozy with our regular thermostat settings, but no wind outside.

    I craved carbs yesterday and made pasta with sauce. That helped immensely. Did not want to go out to eat, but I missed the pint of draft with my meal. LOL. I’m grateful so far that it’s been this nice into January. We can make it to March when things usually begin warming up a bit. It’s really not that far off.

    Is the picture the front of the Law complex? My daughter and I visited the area this summer and she took numerous photos there since it’s so “English” looking and so beautiful. She lived in England for about three years.

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  2. LinnieGayl AAR Post author

    Tee, I think you’re right about needing time to get used to the cold. We have had such a very easy winter so far. Honestly, having to go with this until March doesn’t seem bad at all since we basically had a free month or month and 1/2.

    No, I cheated with the picture. It’s actually one of my Chicago winter pictures. I only have photos around here from the summer and they just didn’t seem appropriate :) I was walking around campus last night when the snow was coming down but it was just too dark to take photos. It was quite pretty, though.

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  3. Ann

    Same here! We had our first major snow storm yesterday. I went out this morning and shoveled for the first time this season. I loved Dec and Jan. We had the same weather as you did. It was one of our warmest Dec and Jan on record. I wish it was like this all winter. BTW I live in Upstate NY.

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  4. LinnieGayl AAR Post author

    Lee, I’ve actually resorted to wearing a fleece jacket I use for exercising over a long sleeve top. It does help.

    Kathy, Princess does not get a heating pad. Although at my vet’s their “office cat” has a heated bed that looks very intriguing.

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  5. Tinabelle

    I am in Southeast Wisconsin and we have had the same mild “winter” up until Thursday. Temps in the 40’s and 50’s led to complacency about the weather. Now I need to start paying closer attention to temps, wind chill, forecasts, and road conditions. Yuck! It was fun while it lasted though.

    I have adjusted my thermostat a bit, too, and my normal winter house garb is leggings, a fleece tunic, and heavy socks. I have an afghan for my legs when I am sitting and a shawl when I need a bit of extra warmth. Hot tea helps, too. Stay warm, everyone.

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