Many people wish that they could hibernate during the winter months. The dark evenings, cold weather and lack of sunlight make them wish that they could curl up into a ball and only emerge after three months or so.
But there is another way to look at winter. There are ways to turn that negative attitude into something more pleasant and enjoyable. Let us look at ways to have a more positive mindset about the winter months:
- Winter is a time for comfort food. Soups, stews and casseroles all come into their own at this time of year. Why not organize the slow cooker in the morning and then when you return home from work at night there is a lovely, tasty meal ready and waiting for you. The home has a welcoming feel to it when you know you are coming home to a hearty, healthy dinner.
- Outdoors pursuits can be fun. Most people are fine about wrapping up warm. Just adding a few layers, a vest, jumper, scarf and a woolly hat and gloves can make for a comfortable time outside. Layers can be added or removed with relative ease. Family walks can be something that everyone can be enthusiastic about. Children love kicking their way through leaves, dragging a sledge up a hill or building a snowman. And long winter walks are a treat when you know that you are coming home to a mug of hot chocolate or a glass of mulled wine.
- The garden has its own winter face. The family can be involved in clearing away old vegetation and leaves. Some plants can be added to the garden so that they come into blossom over winter or early spring. After a bracing hour in the garden it can be lovely to come inside to a warm cosy house with toasted crumpets and a hot drink.
- Home can have a cosy, winter feel to it. Some people have lighter curtains for summer and heavier, thicker ones for winter. It can be a time to add autumn and winter colours. Reds, burnt orange and warm, rich shades are lovely for bringing a snug feeling to a room. If you have an open fire, pinecones can burn beautifully and make a room feel especially homely.
- Lighting needs to be right on dark evenings. Lamps, wall lights and candles can bring a comfortable mood into a room. Add a dimmer switch to overhead lighting so that it is muted and not too bright.
- Bring out the indoor games. Boards games and cards are great fun for a family evening together. Friends can enjoy getting involved in an afternoon marathon of various indoor games. Dominoes, cards, maybe even charades can all be revived as the winter evenings look to be enjoyed with friends and family.
- Even just enjoying an afternoon reading or watching films can be a good way to spend some time. It can be lovely having the excuse that it is too cold or wet to do anything else.
By Susan Leigh