Chicago is setting records for cold and snowfall. Social media outlets are flooded with complaints about the weather, suffering from cabin fever, the horrible traffic and naughty pets that are cooped up in their home. Obviously many are frustrated and bored sitting at home, shoveling, sneezing and watching ridiculous TV shows like “100 Days of Summer” on Bravo. The Chicago based reality show is an ugly reminder to Chicagoans that we only have 100 days of summer. Yes we know but we are tough, hearty and resilient Midwesterner’s. How to survive more winter blues to get to our 100 days of summer can be challenging. Psychologists recommend to “get busy”. For example:
- Sign up for a class.
- Volunteer somewhere on the weekends.
- Have a standing social event like a regular time you meet a friend for dinner.
- Start a project.
- Light therapy may be helpful.
- Avoid hibernating but instead make regular social or networking plans.
- Clean your home by rearranging a closet.
- Spend some quiet time relaxing and thinking.
Along with the winter blues is just surviving sub zero temperatures. Once you are mentally ready to tackle the winter and pull yourself out of the weather “funk”.
A frigid 5 degree winter day is miserable but often typical in Chicago. As you venture outside to divert the winter blues, the bitter cold and wind chill can make it even tougher. Can you even start your car? Will your pet even want to venture outside with you? Experts say there are some things to do to survive the bitter cold.
- Wear layers.
- Keep your feet warn with extra socks.
- Make sure you have a hat and scarf. We lose most of our body heat from our head and neck.
- Medical professionals warn not to drink alcohol to keep warm but find comfort in a warm drink.
- Veterinarians advise pet owners to not leave their dogs outside for a long period of time.
- Also make sure to wipe of your pets paws after a walk to avoid irritation from salt. Also antifreeze is lethal but may attract kids and pets.
- According to the city of Chicago’s web site “Chicago Animal Care and Control Strongly Recommends Keeping Companion Animals inside Your Home” Also the city of Chicago web site warns “Warm engines in parked cars attract cats and small wildlife, which may crawl up under the hood. To avoid injuring any hidden animals, bang on your car's hood to scare them away before starting your engine.”
While these little pieces of advice may be hard to follow as you watch the lake affect snow wipe away the view of the roadway or swallow your patio furniture. But remind yourself , "No winter lasts forever; no spring skips it's turn." -- Hal Borland
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