This month that rascally rodent promised six more weeks of winter and, unfortunately, he was absolutely right. So what can we do to chase away the winter blahs and remind ourselves that spring is just around the corner?
How about a healthy dose of “Hoodie-Hoo?” Believe it or not, today is Northern Hemisphere Hoodie-Hoo Day, a holiday created and copyrighted by Wellcat Holidays. How do you celebrate? At high noon on February 20, go outside, throw your hands in the air and yell, “Hoodie-Hoo!” That’s all there is to chasing winter away and welcoming spring, which arrives in exactly one month.
But in the rare chance that doesn’t work, here are a few conventional ways to beat the winter blues:
- Wear bright colors. Add a splash of orange, hot pink or electric green to those black, brown and grey winter staples.
- Browse through seed catalogues. Even if you live in a high-rise and will never plant a garden, you might find some fun flowers or veggies to grow in containers. Starting tomato and pepper seeds in February will help fill your summer salad bowl.
- Sing along with your playlist of summer tunes. Nothing says warm and sunny like the Beach Boys or Jimmy Buffet.
- Make vacation plans. Or staycation plans if that’s what the budget allows. Whether it’s a cruise to the islands or a splash in a blow-up pool, just thinking about this stuff will make you smile.
- Make some homemade ice cream. Try funky new flavors like Rye Bread Ice Cream, Caramel with Sea Salt or Sweet Potato. If you prefer, stick with the classics, like chocolate, vanilla and strawberry.
- Plunge into spring cleaning. Organize a drawer or a closet shelf every other evening. Donate unwanted treasures to charity or thrift shops. If you start cleaning now, you won’t have to spend those beautiful early spring days inside pushing a vacuum cleaner.
- Make S’Mores in the microwave. Layer ½ of a graham cracker, a slice of chocolate and a big marshmallow on a microwave safe plate. Microwave for about 15 seconds. Smoosh down with the other half of the cracker. Enjoy!
- Decorate with cut flowers. Buy a bunch or three at the grocery store and place the blossoms strategically throughout home and office.
- Get moving! Resurrect that exercise DVD that you haven’t used for weeks. Go to the mall and briskly walk the perimeter. Better yet, bundle up and take a walk outside. The sunshine will boost your level of Vitamin D and your energy level as well.
- Organize a movie night. Gather friends or family and plan a picnic food menu – hot dogs and burgers, veggies and dip, chips, ice cream sundaes and other treats. Set up tray tables or spread out a big blanket in the family room and munch while you watch a special movie or two. Comedies are best. Did you know that laughter has been described as “internal jogging for all the major organs.”
- Eat complex carbohydrates. They take longer to digest, which means they don’t cause spikes in blood sugar that can create roller-coaster moods; they also increase levels of serotonin in the brain. Opt for whole grains and complex carbs like spinach, yams, broccoli, beans, zucchini, lentils, skim milk, and more, which will fill you up while also providing long-lasting nourishment.
- Make a snow volcano! See ChicagoMomSource.com for instructions.
- Phone a friend. If you find yourself in a funk, sometimes just chatting with a kindred spirit can give you a lift. Make sure you focus on the upbeat folks in your social circle!
- Be a friend. Random acts of kindness spread good cheer and will give you a warm feeling inside as well. Need some ideas? Visit Susquehanna Bank’s Facebook page and refer to the Stellar Deeds of the day that we shared during our Million Meals Mission holiday campaign in 2013.
How do YOU chase the winter blahs away?