Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Winter survival guide (2016 edition)

Thirteen degrees outside and all I'm thinking is, "It's gonna be a long road to spring..."

You may be living in cold, cold climes like me, where the earth -- once teeming with flowers and insects and magnificent trees wearing magnificent coats of green -- is now barren and frozen solid. Maybe you're sick of me talking about the weather and thinking, "Yeah, yeah in Cleveland you gotta be tough, you've already told me that!"

OK, so this California girl is really proud of herself. After three winters here (two of which were B-R-U-T-A-L) I feel like I'm becoming a cold weather veteran. It's like having gone through parenting a newborn and surviving the haze. You know what to expect the second, third, fourth time around.

How do you survive frigid temps and not seeing the sun for weeks? 

In 2016, these are my tools:

I will forever preach the miracle that is oregano oil. A powerful antioxidant with natural antibacterial properties, two drops of it in my orange juice every morning keeps the doctor away. And if I feel the onset of a cold, I double the dose and I swear it's like smashing that virus before it becomes full-blown.  

My hands get crazy cracked in winter. I never leave home without my favorite hand cream. It smells delicious and will not leave your fingers feeling greasy.

Anthony Doerr's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is keeping me up late at night. The Cleveland-born author spins gorgeous sentences together, so impossibly simple yet pure genius. I just can't put this book down!

This totally awesome ceramic coffee dripper was my favorite Christmas gift. I brew a fresh cup almost every morning. I'm ruined.

I think my favorite part of this relaxing pillow spray and sleep mist is that fact that it, "works great on overactive children." It really says this on the label! 

Chapped lips are not sexy. Use this scrub on DRY lips and then gently wipe off with a warm washcloth. It will do wonders on that pretty pucker of yours. 

A beautiful, bright lip is an instant winter pick-me-up. My favorite pink is called Schiap (named for Italian fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli).  

It looks like a weird tea pot with a long snout. One of my girlfriends introduced me to the neti pot years ago and it's become a year-round staple. It naturally irrigates your nasal passages, removing excess mucus, pollen, dust and other irritants. Using it takes a few rounds of practice but you'll get the hang of it.   

Chocolate will definitely help you get through winter. (Cup of Jo)