Friday, November 30, 2012

Healthy Checklist for Winter

A sunny corner of the porch 

    In my part of the world, winter means the days are cold, the sun is aloof and stingy with warmth and it is often too damp (outdoors) or too dry(indoors.) And it always means more germs are floating around!
    Staying healthy from the  December solstice until the red-winged blackbirds arrive, is a challenge and it becomes more so with every passing year.  
    This is the perfect time to do a bit of self care.  It doesn't make sense to arrive  to the biggest and best holiday week of the year, and be too exhausted to pretend you are a child again! 
   So as the days grow shorter and my holiday to-do list grows longer, I try to remember to take care of myself.  It really is a gift to everyone I love, if I stay healthy!!
   ***  Wash  hands  often
   ***  Cultivate an indoor garden 
   ***  Add a humidifier (especially helpful to prevent sinus infections)
   ***  Lower the heat at night, use bedwarmers to warm the cold sheets
   *** Wash hands often  
   *** Drink more liquids especially hot tea- herbal or black.
   *** Walk outdoors whenever the weather allows
   *** Try a taste of all the goodies that come my way, but only a taste(trying to cultivate my inner Frenchwoman) 
   *** Wash hands often 
   *** Go to bed early one night a week
   ***  Make a pot of soup every week and freeze the leftovers for easy meals
   *** Dress in layers, wear a hat and gloves 
   *** Make a list of all the things I am too busy to do in December, (books to read, neglected indoor projects, garden planning for next season etc) put the list away until January.  Then, get going!
 *** Did I mention that I wash my hands often?

Cuttings from these tender herbs winter over on the porch

  My strategy is to keep my spirits up, keep the germs away, continue exercising outdoors  and then burrow  deep into my nest until I'm cozy and warm and enjoy this time when the earth is quiet.  Winter (once the calendar changes and the Christmas season is past)  is a good time to contemplate the stillness, the dormant trees, the ever-changing sky. A good time  to pray. 


  1. The color looks pretty this time of year. I can't have too many indoor plants as one of our cat likes to eat them (then refund them...UGH)

  2. Dziękuję za dobre rady i pięknego kwiatka w donicy. Pozdrawiam.
    Thank you for the good advice and beautiful flower in a pot. Yours.

  3. I try to follow all these tips. I have a problem with shaking hands at Church. I feel funny using a hand sanitizer after shaking hands.I have caught a cold or two from Church...and at my age it takes so long to recover. Do you have any suggestions?

    1. I agree, it is awkward to use hand sanitizer after shaking someone's hand. Here are some suggestions , for church and other situations where you may be exposed to the cold virus. First, in church, I have seen many people especially during flu season ( and especially older people)put their hand up in a slight wave and greet me verbally only. I do this if I have a cold myself but not generally speaking. Another important component of preventing the spread of germs is to keep your hands AWAY from your own face!. Lastly, if I think I have been exposed to a cold virus, I take a zinc lozenge as soon as I can. Good luck staying healthy this winter!

  4. Sorry I have been MIA Barbara. Thanks for sharing your tips for staying healthy. Those scented geraniums look so healthy. Good job! xxoo Nancy

  5. Some very wise and timely tips there Barbara. I suffer with chronic respiratory problems so absolutely dread catching colds and as you imply it is so easy to become exhausted by Christmas leaving one more open to colds I think. Your flowering pot plants look very cheerful.

    I loved your 'orange sneaker' post :-) What a charming and adventurous little companion he sounds!


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