It’s hard to find reasons to like winter when you are shucking ice off the windshield of your car in subzero weather and wearing three layers of puffy clothes, but then you read a quote like this and you are reminded that winter is very special in its own way. “Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friend’s hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home” – Edith Sitwell.
Nothing could be more true. Cold weather brings people together. It’s the time you take to slow down, settle in, get cozy, and enjoy some relaxing days and nights at home. We love the simple comforts like sitting around the fire, listening to it crackle, giving the logs a nudge to make the flames sparkle. Keeping the lights off on gray days instead of turning them on. Lighting candles in every room and for dinner just because. Watching all your favorite old movies and switching from chamomile to peppermint tea in between showings. Listening to songs, cooking, baking, and preparing meals for loved ones. Taking Saturday and Sunday to leave your clothes on the floor with your bed unmade and not caring (hardest thing but completely liberating). Whispering and taking as many hot cocoa and Netflix requests from the kids without stressing about if it’s okay. Pillow talk, reading, and pinning in a quiet nook.
If you are longing to feel the cozy winter vibes too, here are a few ideas to incorporate into your everyday life. It covers a few basics from interior design to loungewear.
Make your home a winter resort. Home is your cozy headquarters. It’s important to have special places where you can read a magazine and relax, especially if you also have any nice windows nearby. If you are lucky to have a nice view it’s even better. Load it up with soft cushions, blankets, and a small side table to place your coffee. Bring nature inside with you. Use wooden bowls and ceramic mugs instead of glass or plastic. The difference is surprisingly wonderful. Experiment with light dimmers and light more candles. A warm glow from a candle cannot be replaced by artificial light. And if you have a fireplace, put it to good use, everyone loves a good fire side.
Stock the pantry, wardrobe, and linen closet. Get yourself a box of handmade chocolates from Maison du Chocolat, Ladurée macaroons, a set of herbal teas, maybe a green fig and honey lotion, a journal to write about your new found art of cozy living, and plenty of books to enjoy and help you wind down after a long day. Refresh your loungewear collection with a cashmere wrap, warm socks, lots of Fair Isle knits, shearing lined slippers, and scarves. Add a few more gray linen sheets and lux lush throws to complete your ultimate on demand self-care kit.
Make and share treats with the ones you love. For starters, you might try these soul warmers, cinnamon rolls, rich and creamy cauliflower soup, Swedish meatballs with gravy, seafood stew, and rice pudding or apple cake for dessert. Let’s not forget the endless amount of beverages and cocktails. Dare I say Dule De Leche martini and spiced sangria. Invite your friends and neighbors over often. It can be stressful to entertain but now that the holidays are over, it is all about embracing the imperfect. A casual tray of olives, marcona nuts, salmon toast, and a bit of cake with fruit will go a long way. For extra good measure, linger, don’t rush to get those dishes in the sink. They will be there for you later. Just enjoy the time you have with everyone you like to be around.
Winter brings new beginnings and New Year’s resolutions. A good reminder to practice gratitude for all of the little pleasures life has to offer. A 10 minute walk in the snow or on the lake to a get a glimpse of winter’s charm, making a beautiful meal, or playing cards with your family in the kitchen. It can be so hard when you’re in the day to day but we’re hoping this may help.