Posts Tagged ‘helpful tips

06
Mar
11

Winter Survival Tip #3

One of my best winter survival tricks for tundra living is quite simple: leave.  Get out.  Go somewhere, preferably warm and sunny, but at the very least somewhere else.  Winter is a great time for visits of obligation; it’s a better time for fun vacations, but sometimes a body needs to work within certain restrictions.  A required family trip to your mismatched Nader’s Raider aunt and “Romney is too liberal” bellowing uncle might not be the most pleasant experience, but if they live in Florida, it is a lot more pleasant if you can couple the visit to them with one to some sunshine and temperatures above freezing.  Ideally you can take a week or weekend for fun – cheer on your team at a spring training baseball game, watch the whales migrate in Cabo, surf in Hawaii – but sometimes it is necessary to be a bit practical.  Vitamin D is a practical need; if only I could get my insurance to let me apply airfare to my deductible.

Besides the benefit of a break from snow and ice, taking a break from the tundra also gives you something to look forward to…regardless of the weather here, I will not have to scrape ice off my car to go to work next Monday – I won’t be near my car and I’m not going to work!  Win.  It’s a mental, physical, and emotional break and it is necessary.

So!  Tundra.  You are on notice.  If you are not significantly warmer and sunnier, preferably with longer days, by Thursday  I AM LEAVING.  One of us has to make a change; I accept that it will likely be me.

 

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01
Mar
11

I Chopped Off a Foot…Twelve Inches of Hair

Image from Pantene's Website

I keep waiting to feel sad, but it’s just not happening.  My friends who’ve already done this warned me that I’d be sad.  I’ll cry, they cautioned, it will take awhile to get used to the change.  The latter part is true for sure, but not in a negative way.  I’m chronically squeezing out too much shampoo and then too much conditioner.  As someone raised as a Lutheran Scot in the Midwest, I definitely feel guilty about that waste, but not sad.

A week and a one-half ago, I cut off twelve inches of hair which I donated to the Pantene Beautiful Lengths Program.  This program’s mission is to provide wigs to women who lose their hair due to cancer treatments.  (I considered donating to Locks of Love, which makes wigs for children.  However, most LoL recipients suffer from alopecia and cancer is a more personal cause for me and my family.  I looked into both organizations and both are solid causes.)  The last time my hair was this short, I still had baby teeth and Mr. Reagan was clamoring for Mr. Gorbachev to “tear down that wall.”  It’s clearly been awhile.  I did maintain enough length that my hair is roughly at my shoulders and I can pull it back into a perky (short) little ponytail.  Still, it feels kind of crazy.  I reach back to touch it all the time, to make sure it’s there, but it’s also not all there.

Continue reading ‘I Chopped Off a Foot…Twelve Inches of Hair’

25
Jan
11

Bread Baking: A Tip

With the aid of the internet, I taught myself how to make homemade bread tonight.  The only trick involved convincing my dough to rise, as it turns out that “green”* decisions about heat are not conducive to dough rising.  Apparently yeast isn’t a big fan of 63.  We compromised: I stuck a towel in the dryer and wrapped my bowl up in it, and then placed the bundled bowl near a space heater.  It rose beautifully and baked up deliciously.  

*cheap

22
Jan
11

Cold Weather Survival Tip: Thinking of Others

This post is inspired by 90% of status updates on facebook.  I share with you select wisdom of my mother:

1.) It is cold outside, you are correct.

2.) It is January and you live in the tundra.  What did you expect?

3.) Everyone else in the tundra is cold too.  These negative temperatures do not just affect you.

4.) Whining about the weather will neither make you any warmer nor endear you to others.  (I have been alerted that some folks feel solidarity with others and bond over the cold temps.  Fine, you might feel solidarity, but I bet you don’t feel warm.)

5.) Buck up.  Find something to do.

20
Jan
11

Cold Weather Survival Tip: Kids and Cold

Single-digit weather is not the perkiest extended forecast.  I get chronic cabin fever and my usual winter fun activities are less fun – and at a certain point unsafe – when the temperatures plummet.  Most children share that afflication with me, but there’s a point at which I suspect staying inside with the kids becomes more dangerous than streaking in -80F temps would be.  Thankfully, my extended forecast isn’t that miserable, but the next few days are more than cold enough.  Thankfully #2, I’m not working this weekend, so only have one day of ubercold to strategize.  Here are ten tips to beat the cold and the crazies from/with the kids

Continue reading ‘Cold Weather Survival Tip: Kids and Cold’

13
Jan
11

Sock Contest: A Trick

clearly he has some nordic heritage

I like clean, although I like the state of clean a lot more than I like the activity of cleaning.  Last Saturday, I invited some friends over for a potluck dinner (more on that another day, probably with pictures).  Unfortunately for me, it’s the time of year of snow and slush and salt and sand; all of which are pretty much hell on my floors.   Just as guests often bring wine or treats, their shoes often bring the quadruple floor assault.  Fortunately for me, my friends are considerate and I am tricky-smart. 

I know I can simply ask people to remove their shoes at the door.  Unfortunately, that is kind of boring and not fun, two adjectives I strive not to have associated with myself.   While I doubt no-shoes-at-my-house is news to any of my buddies, I still like to warn them ahead of time as some of my friends are fancy and coordinated and do things like think about what shoes they ought to wear with an outfit –a nd then actually remember to wear them.  Enter the sock contest.

Continue reading ‘Sock Contest: A Trick’

12
Jan
11

Product Recall!

I monitor product recalls because it is my job and because I am Major General Safety.  I am going to win the war against stupid; safety is no accident. 

I get the recall notices for pretty much everything (I’m on the general list) and the recalls pertaining to children’s products twice (I’m on that list too).  Today I got a recall for pajamas, by which I mean I got it twice.  Here’s the defective product:

Continue reading ‘Product Recall!’




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