By Marci Fifield – March 6, 2020
Winter is a magical time of year, what with Christmas, New Year's Eve, building snowmen, twinkling lights, sledding, skiing, etc.
Of course it only lasts until the second week of January when we start to wonder what the meaning of life is in this dead, gray, sometimes slushy existence.
Myself? I have been fortunate. I say "fortunate" because I don't have a better word to use this winter. For six whole weeks I was deeply engrossed in a painting project for my daughter's school - which has occupied around 90% of my days.
I complained about it almost daily because it was physically and emotionally taxing. When it was completed, I had to sit and think about how I used to spend my time before I volunteered my soul to an elementary school. Without deadlines or meeting the expectations of others, I didn't have to do anything I didn't want to, which led me to do nothing for long periods of time.
The sun came out to visit a few times these past couple of weeks, and I soaked up as many rays as possible.
Growing up in Utah, I have learned that this desert state, which ironically has the “Greatest Snow on Earth,” and also a history of bi-polar disorder.
I know better than to assume that spring is on the horizon when I had to wear a sweatshirt and poncho to watch the fireworks last 4th of July due to the cold and rainy weather. It's no wonder that the good people of Utah, myself included, have so many mental health issues when our environment seems to have multiple personalities.
This being said, I have included a small list of activities and items that have been successful in driving away my winter blues, if only for a few minutes at a time.
Good luck to us all in our search for sanity.
Squishmallows: If you haven't had the privilege of encountering a Squishmallow at Walgreen's or Smith's (I see them there most often), then seek these adorable, cuddly pillow pets out and give them a hug. Hug them all the way to the register, take them home, and have a comfy companion to love you through the rough days. I have included a picture of all the Squishmallows I could find throughout my house, though believe several have been kidnapped. You're never too old for a teddy bear or pink squirrel.
YouTube: Hear me out… One thing I have found relaxing and a mindless escape from the inversion, is watching time lapse videos of things like cake decorating and painting and sketching. I even watched a time lapse of someone building a large Lego structure and was pleasantly calming.
Bath bombs and your drink of choice: Make sure the kids don't have a chance of bothering you. Wait for them to sleep or ask your husband to take them on a drive, you know, to make the air quality worse. I love Diet Coke, but maybe try a drink that you rarely consume so you can associate it with relaxation. I think mine would have to be a cream soda or a sparkling flavored water. My favorite bath bombs come from Lush but those are quite pricey. I only get them for Christmas or my birthday but they are worth the wait!
Use your hands: Color, paint, craft, braid, bead, bedazzle, knit, count loose change, hammer something, organize your stamp collection, write an offensive limerick, play with Play-Doh, anything! Let your hands take over all of your brain functions and feel the burden of doom and gloom slowly lift off your shoulders.