My Fifteen Winter Necessities

Today it is cold. Yesterday it was cold. And I just checked the weather for tomorrow, and do you know what? It’s still going to be cold.

Me and the cold aren’t exactly the best of friends.

After being diagnosed with cold urticaria (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cold_urticaria) two years ago, I have spent the months of November to March in pain, anger, and frustration. Now, in 2018 I’ve made a resolution to look more toward the sunny side, and living with annoyance for life five months out of the year just isn’t going to cut it. And for that reason, as soon as my four years of undergrad are complete, you can catch my permanent address being somewhere in Arizona. It’s doctor recommended, after all.

But… that’s in four years. So what will I do until then, besides complain and freeze? I have a few necessities to get me through, and I’ve decided to share them with you.

  • Uggs:
    • You know what Uggs are. Some call them “ugly” (get it?), but frankly my dear, when the wind chill is below 0, I don’t give a damn what I look like. These boots are fur insulated and make the cold mornings a little more cushy and bearable.

 

  • Ugg Mittens:
    • Basically, boots for your hands. Highly recommend.

 

  • Beanie Hat:
    • My newest winter find this year was a brand called “Love Your Melon”, known for the fur ball protruding from the top of the head. That may not sound as cute as it looks, but it’s very nice.

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  • A scarf the size of a small blanket:
    • Anyone can wear a small scarf and hope to be warm, but it takes a scarf that is roughly the size of a small blanket to truly protect you from the frigid elements. You may waddle a bit from the extra weight and bulk around your neck, but it’s all part of the heat exchange.

 

  • Warm Skin” cream: (https://www.warmskin.com/)
    • My mother found this product online after I was diagnosed, and somehow, it works! Created for people who work outdoors or engage in winter sports (one word.. why?!), and basically it’s a thick lotion much like sunscreen. You apply it all over your exposed skin, and it creates a thermal layer between you and the wicked temperatures. Thank you, Science.

warmskin

  • Peppermint Hot Cocoa:
    • Because plain hot cocoa is so 2016.

 

  • Phone background of a desert or beach:
    • As many times a day as I complain or moan about how I can’t feel my fingers, I am reminded that there is a much better, happier, sunnier place somewhere in the world, and it’s certainly not here.

 

  • An actual trip to the desert or beach:
    • And when your phone background just isn’t satisfying enough anymore. Treat yo self. Get away from it all, escape while you can.
IMG_9691

What I woke up to two weeks ago in Phoenix, Arizona

  • Soup:
    • Whether you’re a homemade or can brand of person, it really doesn’t matter, because most of the time, I eat soup when my mouth is numb and my taste buds can’t sense any difference. A good way to warm up for sure.

 

  • Heated seats:
    • We can’t all drive luxury cars, but I’m telling you, heated seats is one way to know that you’ve really made it somewhere in life. There’s nothing like driving down a snowy road with icicles hanging from the branches while your entire backside is a flame. Can’t beat the feeling.

 

  • Coffee:
    • The hotter (and darker, in my preferences), the better.

 

  • Lotion and chapstick:
    • These two go hand in hand, and every crucial space in my life contains the duo. My writing desk, my car, my purse, my backpack, my bathroom, the kitchen, next to my bed, probably even in my closet. I refuse to let my personal beauty succumb to the dark nights of winter.

 

  • More meditation and positive thinking:
    • I have been doing this for a few months now, and I would like to think there is some improvement. Visualizing the sun and a beach and cactuses and sweat is one way to make the season a bit more bearable.

 

  • Heated Blanket:
    • I received one for Christmas, and it beats me how i survived 19 years without one. It is also much harder to get out of bed, thanks to it.

 

  • A higher tolerance and patience level:
    • I’m going to be real honest: the winter makes me very anxious. Very antsy, from being cooped up inside with all this stale air. Very mad, that I can’t plant a garden or take my dog for a walk without suffering from frostbite. Very, very sad, from the lack of natural light. And most of all, just very TIRED. I am tired of living in the cold climate and a place that makes me miserable, so I am hanging on to the thread of a desert backyard in the next five years. It is very necessary for me to develop a higher tolerance for the many annoyances I face in the winter, as well as a patience level to help me put up with all my whining.

IMG_3004.jpg

If you’re looking for me, I will be curled up in my blanket with a cup of peppermint hot coca, daydreaming of the warmer times.

Yours, Madeleine

 

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