I’m not a true winter hater and I don’t mind the cold as much as the heat but I still feel the doldrums of the season especially after the rush of the holidays and the enthusiasm of the year. It feels like a season of waiting, of holding out or holding on. I know many others feel it even more deeply as the darkness presses in and we hide away from the biting temps. I’ve found that the small gifts of comfort and friendship make all the difference.
From the silly to the serious, here’s my list for this season of waiting; the things that are saving my life and helping me hold on until new hope arrives. I’m also joining up with others to share “What’s Saving Your Life” over at Modern Mrs. Darcy.
I’ve always wanted to be part of a book club and think I kept waiting to be invited to one. But last year I took the brave step and put out some feelers about starting a new group and it has been one of my favorite things. We meet once a month and drink wine and talk about books which doesn’t sound earth-shattering in any way but my real growth has been in being the group’s organizer. I’m accountable because I asked others to join me so I can’t use my usual social anxiety to get out of it and books + friends always make me happy. Plus the blending of several of my favorite people into a monthly chance to socialize has been lots and lots of fun. I’m so glad I took the risk to ask others to join me in something.
Early Morning Movies
Going to the movie theater is such a fun escape but I can never stomach the price of tickets plus a babysitter so we hardly ever see anything in the theater. My husband has had some more flexibility in his schedule this year and with the kids in school, we’ve discovered the secret of the 10am movie. It’s never crowded, you totally feel like you’re playing hooky and tickets are less than $6 which means I can smuggle my bag of peanut butter M&Ms in and enjoy a movie guilt-free (okay, there’s slight guilt about the contraband snacks but come.on.people $7 for small popcorn?….we all have to rebel somehow).
Head and Shoulders Clinical Solutions Dandruff Shampoo
No one likes to admit that they have a case of the flakes but when winter comes, my scalp goes crazy. I was getting so self-conscious about it but hated the idea of spending a lot on my shampoo. I thought I could just muddle through with my old stuff but when my husband received this product to review, I promptly stole it and let me tell you, life-changing! I will happily be buying some of my own. After just one treatment almost 80% of the dandruff had cleared up and since I only wash my hair every few days, I’m using it about 3-4 times per week and my scalp feels fantastic. If winter means a dry itchy scalp for you, it’s totally worth a try. (the link above is for Walgreens, since Amazon had this product listed for more than double the price)
A New Diffuser
I love using essential oils to help my family stay healthy and always used the diffuser that came with my original kit of oils but I hated to leave it out since it didn’t look very nice. I saw others recommending this one and my brother and sister-in-law kindly gave it to me for Christmas. It’s such a game changer to have one I can leave out all the time and that looks beautiful sitting out. It reminds me to fill it up in the morning or evening and I’m already thinking about ordering another. The oils do make a difference in lifting my spirits and in keeping us all a bit healthier during cold and flu season.
Pray As You Go App
I’m not sure where I first heard about Pray As You Go but it’s been a helpful resource in carving out a bit of quiet meditation time for me. The 12-15 minute episodes contain scripture, music and reflective questions and are produced by Jesuit Media Initiatives. It taps into the ancient spiritual practices of the church which helps me feel more grounded in the bigger picture of my faith and I appreciate it’s simplicity and open application. The app format is perfect for listening on the go but can also it can also be streamed from a computer. Bonus: the beautiful British accents of the readers is magical.
I’d love to hear about what’s saving your life right now? What’s making you smile as you wait for those warm rays of sun to come back? Leave a comment below with your favorite winter treat or self-care routine!
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