12 Ways to Beat the Cold Weather Blues

Lifestyle

While winter is a truly beautiful season, being stuck inside all the time can start to take a toll on you and your mind. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the season without feeling lost in a blizzard.

1. Bake

Because there are so many holidays in the winter, the colder months are a perfect time to start learning how to make everything from pies to cakes to breads.

Start by learning make simple things like banana bread and work your way up to baking more complicated breads and desserts. Once you gain confidence in your baking abilities, start baking for special events and show off how far you've come.

2. Read A New Book

Reading is a great hobby to take up this winter, because you don't have to physically go anywhere, you can just curl up on the couch and go anywhere you want.

When the weather starts to get chilly, head to your local library and pick out a bunch of books. Then spend time reading whenever you don't feel like going anywhere.

3. Plan a Fantasy Vacation

Is there somewhere you've always wanted to travel to? Why not plan your dream trip to that place if money wasn't an object. Plan out all the details from deciding whether to drive or fly, to all the stops you're going to make and what you're going to do when you reach your destination. Make it as elaborate as you want. You could even go as far as planning your outfits and hair for each day.

4. Build A Snowman

Even if you're not a fan of the cold, some parts of the winter months are worth embracing, like making a snowman. Snowmen don't mind standing outside and they look cute while doing it.

There are two main ways to make a snowman: the rolling method and the sandcastle method.

Supplies: Sticky snow (not powdery), sticks for the arms, peanuts or coffee beans for the face, accessories, carrot for the nose (optional)

How to Build A Snowman Rolling Method:

This method works best when you have several feet of snow on the ground.

1. Form a snowball that is about the size of a basketball. Then roll it through the snow, patting it on as you go until you have a large snowball.

2. Form 2 other snowballs the same way as you did the first, making each one smaller than the last.

3. Stack the snowball from biggest to smallest.

4. Attach the facial features and accessories

How To Build A Snowman Sandcastle Method

This method works best if you

1. Pack a 5 gallon bucket with snow as tight as possible. Then turn it upside down like you would if you were making a sandcastle. If the snow won't release, lightly tap on the bucket. Repeat. You won't want to stack your snowman more than two buckets high.

2. Accessorize your snowman.

5. Go Swimming at an Indoor Pool

If you're desperately missing summer, why not reclaim some of that warm weather joy by going swimming in December?

Often, recreation centers have indoor pools that are open to the public during winter months, so you can go swimming when it is cold and blowing outside. Generally, it only costs a few dollars for one day, and some places offer a pass that allows you to pay one time and swim the entire season.

6. Start A Thankfulness Journal

It's easy to find things to complain about when you only look at the bad, but if you tend to think about what's good, it's easy to find reasons to be thankful.

One of the best ways to find what's good is to start a thankfulness journal, where you write down good things that have happened each day and what you're thankful for.

Later on when you're having a bad day, look back through your journal and cherish all of the good things you wrote down.

7. Write A Short Story

Have always wanted to write, but you don't know where to start? Why not start with a short story?

Short stories are great for beginning writers because they are only about 500 to 3,000 words and they don't require as much of a commitment as a novel.

One of the best ways to start writing stories, is to start with a prompt and let your imagination run free from there. One of the best ways I found to get writing prompts is to look on Pinterest. There are hundreds of prompts in all different genres.

Once you have an idea of what you're going to write about, sit down and just let the words flow. Don't worry about grammar, spelling or your work being perfect, just write what you feel.

After you finish writing your short story, let it sit for awhile, about 2 to 4 weeks, then go back and look at it. Figure out what parts you do like and which ones you don't. Rewrite or cut out the parts you don't like. Keep working on your story until it is something you would be proud to show others.

8. Make snow Ice Cream

Snow ice cream is a wonderful treat that combines the theme of the season, (snow) with the simplicity of vanilla ice cream in an amazing dessert. Here is a link to an easy recipe.

9. Watch A New TV Show

Sometimes on long winter nights, watching a new show is just the thing to warm you up and with so many streaming services getting new shows and bringing back old favorites, it's not hard to find something to watch.

Some of My Favorite Shows:

1. White Collar- FBI agent Peter Burke teams up with con man Neil Caffrey to solve crimes.

2. Alias- Sydney Bristow thought she was working for the CIA, until her boss had her fiance killed. Now, she works as a double agent for the real CIA.

3. Gilmore Girls- The iconic mother-daughter tag team of Lorelai and Rory Gilmore drink coffee and deal with affluent parents and grandparents with lots of laughs, smiles, and help from the colorful residents of their hometown.

10. Make A Winter Playlist

I love music and so making playlists to go along with different seasons is always something fun for me to do. The great thing about making seasonal playlists is that you can take them so many directions, including filling it with holiday music or just songs that remind you of the season.

11. Embrace the Season's Flavors

Why not take advantage of all the specialty flavors the season brings? For most of the fall months (September through November), maple and pumpkin are king, but when December rolls around, peppermint takes over.

These flavors have turned into a phenomenon that has gone as far as having its own section in some grocery stores.

Try out all the fun and weird combinations, like pumpkin spice popcorn and peppermint hot chocolate.

12. Enjoy Time With Family and Friends

The winter is full of holidays and reasons to spend time with the ones we love. But often, we take this time for granted. Remember to relax and enjoy the time you have with those you love.

While winter can be a difficult season, it can be made better by finding joy in life no matter what season it is, and remembering that spring is just around the corner.

Cassandra Stinger
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Cassandra Stinger is a journalist and aspiring author from central Kansas. When she's not writing, she can be found reading, cooking, or pursuing photography.