Spring officially begins in less than three weeks, but since we got snow where I live last year on May 17th, I'm not holding my breath for warm weather anytime soon. Here are a half-dozen ways to survive whatever remains of winter— no matter how many weeks (or months) we have yet to go.
1. Feast On All Your Seasonal Favorites: The Kitchn has recipes for mulled wine, gingersnaps, stew, sweet potato ginger miso soup, spiked Nutella hot chocolate, Minnesota wild rice and mushroom soup, brown butter hot buttered rum, and so many other cold-weather favorites. Get to cooking, baking, and spiking, because the warm-booze oven-running season is almost over.
2. Wear Your Hottest Cold-Weather Outfits: I own a killer dark green dress that I love but haven't managed to wear yet this year... because I haven't really gone out. It is purely a fall-winter dress so I need to bust it out soon. Watch out, favorite local taquería, I've got my (long-sleeved, warm) freakum dress on.
3. Watch All of the Television: During the spring, summer, and fall, we watch basically zero movies and television shows because we're too busy soaking up all the glorious sun and fresh air— there's a lot of frolicking to catch up on. The short days and below-zero winter weather, however, generally keep us trapped indoors and boy, have we been making the most of it. We'll definitely be done with all available Game of Thrones by the time spring hits, I need to finally watch the final season of Parks & Recreation (I was too sad), and if we use our time wisely, we can squeeze in The Bletchley Circle, Being Human, another season of classic Simpsons, and a bunch more Cosmos.
4. Indulge in Garden Daydreams: Whether you have a quarter-acre vegetable patch or three pots on your fire escape, imagining the beautiful, delicious things you'll grow is so fun and satisfying. Sketching out a garden plan is exciting and meditating, perusing seed catalogues is fascinating, and all of it is approximately 1000 times more fun than tilling and weeding said quarter-acre in 100ºF weather with 100% humidity. Enjoy the pretty, pretty parts of gardening before harsh reality sets in come spring!
5. Light a Fire: If you're lucky enough to have a fireplace in your home, now is the time to use it. Read by the light of it, fall asleep next to it, and make love down by it. We don't have a fireplace- because why would a little farmhouse built 100 years ago in the middle of nowhere surrounded by a near-endless supply of fallen wood have a fireplace— so do it for me.
6. Take a Tiny Getaway: The state parks near us rent out cabins for cheap— most were former staff cabins, built as part of the WPA, so they're not at all fancy but they are cool. They're surrounded by hiking trails, most have fireplaces (see above), and most importantly they provide a change of scenery. We recently celebrated my birthday with a 30-hour jaunt to Madison, WI, and it was incredible what a difference such a short trip can make. I felt so refreshed and re-set when we returned, and much less likely to succumb to winter madness.
What are your favorite tricks for surviving- and even enjoying- the final days of winter?