October 30, 2012

Cozying Up to Winter

Winter is coming.  Cold days and cold nights are kept warm by cozying up to the fireplace with hot cocoa and board games.  Here are some ways to welcome the season.
  • Winter Home Maintenance
    • Check and replace your air filter.
    • Put an extra blanket on the beds.
  • Computer Maintenance
    • Backup your system.
  • Indoor Decor:
    • Add warmth to your home with throw blankets in plaid or forest motifs.
    • Add runners and woolen or plaid doilies to warm and soften hard surfaces.
    • Put out candles and brass or copper objects which reflect light.  This will add both light and warmth.
    • Bring in herbs and African Violets and place in a sunny windowsill.
    • Bring in warm hues for slipcovers and throw pillows. Take your cue from the woods, forest green, cranberry red, snow white, and deep brown.
    • Table linens should also reflect the winter with thicker placemats in the winter hues you've chosen.
    • Special touches:
      • Add a bowl of pinecones to the side table.
      • Pull out some books to read over the season.
  • Making an Entrance:
    • Create a wreath with pine needles, pinecones and red berries.  Tie on a plaid ribbon.
  • In the Garden:
    • Add more mulch where needed, but to prevent rodents from nesting in the soil, wait until the ground freezes before adding a 6-inch layer of organic material as winter mulch.
    • Knock down snow from the lower branches of evergreens and work your way up.  It the snow gets too heavy your tree may be damaged.  If ice is on the tree, don't break it off.  Wait for it to melt and then free the branch.
    • If you live in a temperate climate, grow a winter vegetable garden with Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, kohlrabi, mustard, broccoli, and turnips.
  •  Car Care:
    • Check your tires monthly, best checked when they are cold (have not been driven for three hours or driven less than a couple of miles.)
    • Check the batteries in the car flashlights.
    • Put a warm blanket in the trunk.
  • Pet Care:
    • Don't let your pets freeze in the cold weather!  Make sure they have nice places to sleep and there are no leaks in the dog house.
  • Personal Care:
    • Apply lotion liberally to your hands.
    • Layer clothing for the most warmth and the ability to cool down inside.
Winter Crafts & Activities:
  • Have a stack of books and magazine in arms reach.
  • Be sure to have cards and board games readily available.
  • Stop by the craft store and pick up a few activity kits.
  • Get a new winter desktop images.
Winter Holidays:  Chanukah, Presidents' Day, Purim, Martin Luther King Jr's Birthday, Chinese New Year, Mardi Gras, Holi, Christmas, Boxing Day, Kwanzaa, New Years, Candlemas, Groundhogs Day, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day.