Tag Archives: winter

Prep for Winter

While walking the other day, I see the animals making their preparations for winter. Here are some tips to help you do the same;

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On the blog,  onegoodthingbyjillee.com, she shares some neat tips on how to put your garden to bed.

heaterTrying to stay warm can be an issue if your power goes out, but BE CAREFUL with heaters and anything warmed with candles. This project offers an inexpensive means for heat, but DO NOT LEAVE UNATTENDED.

I have fingerless gloves to help keep my hands warm, as well as wrists. My husband made me another pair from an old sweat shirt. This makes a huge difference for me in staying warm when our house is kept at a lower temperature.

This lends to my next tip- Programmable Thermostat. We got one a few years ago, and it can lower the temperature in the evenings, when we’re toasty under blankets. It turns the heat up by the time we get out of bed. This helps tremendously to cut our electric bill without freezing us through the winter.

I love my electric blanket for sleeping, but I also have a electric blanket that’s heated as well. My son uses that at his desk, or we use it to watch TV on colder evenings. You can also find USB heated blankets, or car charger blankets for your vehicle.

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And here is a helpful article from Women’s Day that shares House Prep Tips, that includes gardens.

This includes weatherization, and caring for patio furniture.

Preparing for winter in an emotional or spiritual sense involves some planning as well.

Make a list of fun things you want to do through the winter. This might include skating, sledding, building a snow man, or watching movies, sipping cocoa, or learning new things (language, herbalism, or knitting as suggestions).

Keep a journal. Journaling offers catharsis for those who might deal with depression or negative thinking. Promise yourself you won’t ‘feed your depression’, but practice happy thoughts, focusing on the positive, and adjusting the attitude to reflect a healthier outlook on Life.

Use the winter for learning. It’s the best time to stay indoors and master new skills. I already started my ‘learning list’ which includes crochet, handmade cards, jewelry making, and even some projects around the house. Keeping busy will keep the doldrums at bay.

Are you ready for winter yet? Post in comments to share your ideas.

The Dark Half of the year

 I’ve taken a sabbatical from the meetup group for a couple of months. This time of year gets so busy, and I hate being stressed through the holiday season. It helps to pull back from responsibly and know my own limits, enabling me to be recharged when I’m ready to start meetings again.

I’ve been working on a web site for my groups, and the Western MD Wiccan Meetup site offers something even for non-members. Its still a work in progress, but I hope to includes tons of resources and information for those of the pagan persuasion.

The days are growing shorter. The nights are longer, and as a night owl, this doesn’t really bother me. The cold does. I sit beneath a lap electric blanket as I type this, but the dark half the year doesn’t bother me. It’s the best time for Introverts. The time of year, you evaluate your goals, your Self, to spend time understand what makes you tick, learning about you, and the darker side of our Self. It’s a time for meditation, introspection, and waiting for the spring- at least for me, anyway.

Do you prepare for the winter? Do you do things in the dark half of the year differently as the light half? What does the Dark Half mean to you? Post in comments.

Enduring the dark times

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Despite the shortest day now past and gone, we should see the days lengthening. This still means months of cold and dark, and often time, this is the hardest for those dealing with depression.

Unfortunately, we can’t hibernate through the winter, so we must endure instead. Here are some ideas to help;

Listen to Music. Studies show that listening to music impacts our mood and attitude. Another study showed that what you listen to can impact moods in many ways from provoking anger or sadness, or being uplifting.

Eat the right food. Humans tend to be forages by nature. This doesn’t mean to continually eat, but to eat regularly, but small meals, through the day. This keeps the metabolism up and running, and you’re less likely to ‘crash’. Doctors suggest Omega 3’s, and refined carbs (not the ‘white’ carbs) should be consumed.

Be mindful of what you eat, but also how you eat. Eat slowly and mindfully, to enjoy the flavor and texture of the food.

Get enough rest. This one is a tough one for me because I’m an insomniac. I use the supplement Melatonin to help, which lets me go to sleep and stay asleep. There’s no drowsy effect in the morning either. Try also herbs (pill or tea) such as Valerian, Chamomile, and Mint. Be sure to get enough hours of sleep. For some people this might mean anywhere from 6-10 hours. Listen to your body.

Meditate daily. Take some time every day to meditate. There are different methods to calm the mind, but all forms help improve mood and relieve stress levels.

Change your thinking. You might think this is impossible, but the way we think, our attitude, is often learned or a bad habit. Instead of seeing the dark cloud, try to see the silver lining. Don’t see problems as blocks, but obstacles to be overcome (or challenges, or as I like to think of them as ‘quests’ like in a video game). With practice, you can improve your mood.

Keep pictures and photos of people (or animals) who are smiling. The human brain perks up when seeing a genuine smile, and often boosts the mood. Its almost as if we need to respond by smiling back.

What do you do to keep happy?

Post in comments.