Posted in Monthly Musings

Monthly Musings


I can’t believe it’s already the end of the first month of 2023! I’m so happy that Holly and Patty are continuing their Monthly Musings link up, and I’m joining them today.

This month’s topic is: beating the winter blues…

1. Something you do for yourself to beat the winter blues

With it getting darker earlier, it’s tempting for me to come home and put my pjs on! That being said, I try to keep my routine as normal as possible. When I get home, I usually give myself a few minutes and then go ahead and get my workout in.

Also, last week, for instance, the temps were so mild. After my workouts, I walked for about twenty minutes and enjoyed the sunshine while I could.

2. Something you do for your family to bring joy in the winter

Ever since the kids were little, I make snowman pancakes on the first snow day…and I still do. I just checked my stock to make sure I have pancakes and other good stuff if/when we ever get measurable snow! and…

…I try to make Valentine’s Day fun. I always pick up a few things for the kids…

…and the past couple of years, I’ve made a little Valentine’s Day lunch at some point in February.

Travis and I usually go to dinner, just the two of us, one evening around Valentine’s Day.

3. Favorite cozy items

I love an oversized sweatshirt and leggings or pj pants.

Cozy socks and/or slippers are a must! These are my new fave slippers:

…as well as my new boots. These have been perfect to wear with the colder temps!

4. Winter exercise habits or practices

I keep everything pretty much the same which means Beachbody workouts in my basement. That being said, we tend to have a few more free Saturdays in the winter (cross country, football games, etc. take up time in the fall), so I try to take advantage of that time and go to the gym on Saturdays that I have the chance.

5. Do you practice journaling or mediation?

I write this blog. haha

That’s about it. I do always try to start the day with some quiet time, and even at night before I go to sleep, I just try to calm my brain with a few quiet minutes.

6. Do you light candles or use essential oils?

I always have a candle burning if we are home. Lighting a candle is one of the first things I do when I wake up and same when I walk in the door!

7. Bedtime rituals to promote quality sleep

Y’all! I’m a high maintenance sleeper! I started using a weighted blanket a few years ago, and it’s hard to sleep without it. I’ve been using a sound machine since the kids were little. (When they were babies, they had a sound machine in their room that I could always hear through the monitor…so when I quit using the monitor, I missed the the white noise sound. So, that meant we needed one for our room.) Any app I’ve found isn’t the same, so we bring at least one sound machine with us when we travel if we can.

And…the real MVP…an Olly melatonin. The package says you can take two, but just one is all I need. I only occasionally use these, but they are legit.

8. Morning habits that help me prepare for a good day

Quiet and coffee to start my day. If I had to wake up to an alarm and hit the ground running, I wouldn’t feel ready for the day. One day during the kids early elementary years, I forgot to set an alarm. We all woke up late, had to rush to get to school, and I clearly remember feeling so frantic all day. (which I didn’t like one bit!)

I also try to know what I’m going to wear the next day, so I don’t have to think much about that. Some days I have my lunch made the night before…and some days I don’t. Obviously, it helps if I do.

9. Favorite way to spend days off in the winter?

I love a snow day!

There have been a few times when major winter weather has hit and Travis has been home. He likes to try and be productive, and I have to remind him that’s not what a snow day is about. haha

Now, there have been times when we’ve had a stretch of days off, and then we are eventually productive.

Of course, the kids love to play in the snow which is probably their favorite way to spend a winter day. We have such a great group of neighborhood friends, and they all end up getting together to sled, play in the snow and run around. Of course, that’s gotten easier on me as the kids have gotten older! Now, they bundle themselves up and head out to play…checking in when they can.

Our school plan this year is a mix of snow days and online learning days which is what we did last year too. I think that’s a good compromise considering we are 1:1 with technology, and the kids don’t have to get online with teachers. No one wants to be in school past May 31. I can promise you that!

As I’ve mentioned before, January and February tend to be slower months, so I do try to build in time on the weekend to read, watch a movie, nap, and whatever else I feel like doing. After the hustle and bustle of November and December, I feel like I deserve it.

10. Favorite winter themed movie

Well, in December, I think of Home Alone, A Christmas Story, and The Holiday.

When kids were little, we watched Frozen more times that I can count.

In the winter, I also think of Serendipity (the first movie Travis and I ever saw in a movie theater together) and Cool Runnings. That’s a family fave for sure.

This was such a fun topic to think about. It’s an unpopular opinion, but I love winter.

Have a great day!

18 thoughts on “Monthly Musings

  1. I am with you on most of this! I don’t feel that I have had to employ most of my cozy winter strategies yet since it’s been so mild for much of the time this month.
    I really want those Birks slippers/sandals and those boots! Would that be bad if I got both? I have 20 year old Ugg boots (the originals that jessica simpson and all the stars wore with mini skirts?) and I still wear them and they keep my feet so cozy, but they are only for at home use.
    I have tried the weighted blankets that my kids have and they are too heavy for me, I think. I don’t use a sound machine, but I can see where that would be comforting. I have a very bad habit of putting one earbud in and listening to House Hunters or Gilmore Girls to fall asleep. I know this is not a great habit, but I have been doing it for years now. I also swear by my Ashwagandha, which is pretty much the same as your Ollys I think? I only take one, also.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do love both the slippers and boots. I’ve never owned ugg boots and these do the trick. I don’t see me wearing them to school but they’ve been great to slip on to run errands, etc. I used to always have tv on to fall asleep but now I usually don’t. If I do, it’s a comforting show that I’m familiar with like golden girls


      1. I think you could wear the boots out of the house? I guess I could get out of the habit. If I get a booklight or wear a headlamp I could try reading again. I could borrow Mason’s Plato and I think that might put me right to sleep.


  2. I wish Alec’s school did a blend of online and snow days; thankfully we haven’t had any snow days yet but I’ve already warned him that if we have more than a couple he’ll miss the last few days of school since I planned our family vacation for that weekend right when they’re supposed to get out. Those snowman pancakes are so fun! What a great tradition.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This was a fun post to read! I’m thinking of doing a bonus post later, because I love the topics this month. I love winter! I am always wheezy, so I breathe well when it’s very cold outside. I love going outside to wake up in that way too…I may do that today while I’m at work and on one of my breaks. Thanks for sharing today, Jen!


  4. I have been on the struggle bus for sleep for the past few years. Just when I think I’ve found something that works, I start having trouble again. I’ll have to check out the melatonin!

    Liked by 1 person

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