5 things saving my life this winter

Cold weather and short winter days throw me for a loop. I know it’s all relative and it’s not nearly so cold or so dark here in North Carolina as in many places, but that just solidifies my resolve not to move anywhere more wintery. So today I’m taking a cue from Anne Bogel to share what’s “saving my life right now.”

1- space heater for workouts

I hate to be cold, so motivating myself to go out on my unheated porch to workout has been pretty brutal this winter. I can only wear so many layers and still MOVE. And even with layers, and socks, that tile floor radiates cold right into my feet. These things do not make for a happy Jamie.

So I got a little space heater and my life is changed. I turn it on a little while before I want to workout, and while it’s certainly doesn’t make things super-toasty, it’s enough to keep my toes thawed. I picked the non-digital version of this one up at Walmart.

2- mind shift about the winter solstice

What the first day of winter means to me: too many more cold, dismally short days ahead. But this year, thanks to a friend, I shifted my thinking to look at the winter solstice as the first of longer days. More sunshine!

3- Teaching Textbooks Math

Teaching Textbooks online math

Hey, homeschool mamas: this is your friendly reminder that you can change whatever isn’t working — for your kid or for you — and you don’t even have to wait til the next school year.

We switched 4th grade math just a couple of months ago. We started the year with Horizons, which was fine, but Teaching Textbooks is working so much better for us. I used it for years with Kathryn, back when a big honkin’ book and a pile of CDs were required, but this online subscription 3.0 version is life-changing. My boy likes it, and since math is my least favorite subject to teach, it makes me happier too.

Read my thorough Teaching Textbooks review from the way-back machine.

4- tea (forever and ever, amen)

Tea always helps save my life, in every season, but even more when it’s one of those days I can’t seem to get warm. My current favorites are Scottish Breakfast for mornings, and sticky rice oolong for afternoons.

5- low-key meal planning

I’m not super-organized about meal planning because I’ve tried that way and it make me crazy. But leaving it all up in the air doesn’t go well either. I jot down my plan for family dinners in my planner so I don’t get to the end of the day and have to make DECISIONS. Ick.

Confession: I don’t always make the same meal for myself as I make for the family. I know some folks think that’s crazy but it works for me.

simple green meals

I’m not a serious foodie and I kinda hate cooking, but if I’m going to go to the trouble of cooking, I want good food and simple recipes that fuel me well. My two current favorite cookbooks are Simple Green Meals and Run Fast, Eat Slow.

What about you? What’s helping you function lately?