For those of you that don't live in LA, we get it. We hear you laughing. But, despite LA's reputation for balmy weather, it can be distinctly chilly, especially at night when the sun goes down and the temperature drops. Still, we can be stubborn about turning on the heat (we don't want to admit it gets cold here either). We wondered, how could we stay warm in our home without turning on the heat? How we're warding off the chill, after the jump...
- Throw on a throw: Sometimes, feeling warm is a mental state as much it is a physical one. Our home, with its cozy colours, seating arrangement and lush curtains is inherently warm. In your own home, try a velvet or corduroy pillow, a generous throw or paint one wall a deep colour.
- Light a candle: Warm spicy musky and woody scents - clove, cinnamon, tabacco, vanilla - known as "Orientals" in the fragrance business - make your home smell warm. A group of flickering candles heightens that illusion.
- Warm foods warm your insides: Now's the perfect time for a cup of tea. We like to make food in a crockpot so it's ready and warm when we come home.
- Baking up a batch of cookies: Baking not only warms your home but your soul as well. Spring for cinnamon candles, food colouring and a set of cookie cutters and spend an afternoon making and decorating cookies with friends. Or try your hand at a pie.
- A bath is not only a great way to wind down at the end of the day but a time honoured way of taking the chill off. Try one before bed to warm you up and calm you down and bid adieu to insomnia.
- Turn off the heat: Even if you use your heat during the day, consider turning it off at night. Your skin won't be as dry and your sleep will be deeper. Extra down, wool or fiberfill blankets let you regulate your body's temperature during the night. Switch to flannel or jersey sheets in the winter. And, remember that line in the poem, "A Visit from St. Nicholas," about "I in my cap"? A hat can keep you surprisingly warm at night. Ditto socks.
- Consider a humidifier. Humid air feels warmer.
- Run ceiling fans in reverse to push rising heat back down.
- Do your laundry: Try clothes and towels warm from the dryer
- Exercise is not only good for your heart rate, it's also good to get your blood circulating. A quick dash around the house when you come home or before you go to bed with the vacuum, putting things away or dusting is good for your home and good for your keeping your heart pumping.
- Wear slippers at home. As much as we love running around barefoot, a pair of lined slippers keeps our feet soft and our toes from getting stubbed.
- Open your curtains and blinds during the day to let the sun in and warm up your space.
- Consider a rug: Even if you like the look of bare floors in the rest of your home, try a rug in your bedroom so your feet have a warm spot to land on in the morning.
- Keep out the night air: Block drafts with rolled up towels or a draftstopper. Buy one or make one yourself with scraps of fabric and dry beans or rice.
[image: Living, etc.]