We're used to cold weather, but it's been on the extreme side this winter. We're expected to have negative 55 to negative 65 degree wind chills tonight & tomorrow. The last time I remember cold like that was my oldest sister's wedding in January 1996. Oh, the stories!
Anyway, Minnesotans are being told to "hunker down."
It's the weekend, and school has already been canceled state-wide for tomorrow, so the kids & I put together this list of things (cheap, free, and at home) to do while avoiding frostbite.
1. Bake! And then bake some more.
2. Read. Don't have a book on hand? Re-read. I picked up a book that I was going to get rid of this morning, and started re-reading it since it had been over a decade.
3. Watch a movie. Last night we watched The Croods. Very amusing.
4. Play a game. Cards. Dominoes. Monkey in the Middle. Hide & Seek.
5. PURGE. There's never a better time to get rid of things than when you're cooped up with them!
6. Write a letter. Arctic January days are a good time to write holiday thank you notes.
7. Knit something warm.
8. Learn something new. I keep telling myself I'll learn how to crochet.
9. Practice something you want to get better at. Piano, still life photography, headstands. Our six-year-old is practicing jumping rope today, and getting better at it! (Lilly's been practicing the headstands.)
10. Pamper yourself. Soak your feet, paint your toes, use that new sugar scrub you got for Christmas. Or google how to make some.
11. If you feel industrious & up to braving the cold, you could split firewood, as our teenage boys are doing right now. As Henry Ford said, "Chop your own wood, and it will warm you twice."
12. Build something with Lincoln Logs or Legos. There is no age limit to these great toys.
13. Catch up on ordering prints of your photos. I'm terrible about ordering prints. Now is a good time to take advantage of the convenience of doing this from home.
14. Clean out your sock drawer. Especially if you got nice new ones for Christmas.
15. Update your address book - mine was a mess of outdated addresses when I went to mail holiday greetings in December.
16. Blow bubbles outside & watch them freeze. We did this a few years ago. It works.
(Karo Syrup has a good bubble recipe here.)
17. Get a jump start on making Valentines!
18. Water your house plants. (I just realized I've been neglected mine - they're pretty dry with all the running of the furnace & burning of the fire lately.) Give them some TLC & sprucing up.
19. Take a nap. Napping can improve your senses, creativity, health, and mood. Did you know the ancient Romans were biphasic sleepers? Many animals are hibernating right now in the cold & long hours of dark, and napping is totally natural, too!
20. If you're a meal-planner person (which, unfortunately, I'm not), you could get ahead on freezing some family meals.
21. Or, have a candlelit dinner with your family. (Beau's suggestion.)
22. Fill in birthdays & special occasions on your new calendar. Mark some days off for yourself!
23. Look at maps & make a list of places you want to go. Perhaps warmer ones.
24. Marvel at the creatures, the frogs & the toads, the birds & the deer that actually survive out there in this.
25. Drink cocoa, pile on blankets, & keep warm!