In Kansas, it’s a well-known fact that the weather is unpredictable. It might be freezing one day, sunny and 70 the next, then pelting freezing rain by the end of the week. There’s just no way to tell what’s coming next. Which is why, in winter, I spend a good 97% of the season being cold – whether it’s 60 or -18. I wear layers, coats, keep extra pairs of socks in my purse, and look for any excuse to wear by body-encasing coveralls. Sure it may not be “cold” every day, but just the thought of colder days brings out the goose bumps in me.
This is caused by a few things:
1) My job requires me to sit. A lot. I can get an entire day’s work done and have sat through most of it. Sure I check on the chickens, make tea, do chores, and pick up the cats each time they jump on my desk (about 267 times per day). But that’s not enough movement to create full-body warmth.
2) I’m small – there’s not enough natural layers to insulate.
3) Ladies are ultra sensitive to temperature changes.
4) The Bungalow house has original 1910 windows, which are only mildly drafty, but don’t lock out colder temps. When it’s over 100 years old, history trumps efficiency.
5) I have a lot tolerance for being uncomfortable; being cold is lame.
To stay warm, I:
1) Take tons of hot baths
2) Cover up with a blanket – AKA “desk blanket.”
3) Run a space heater 12-inches from my legs. It’s set at 80 – the highest of intervals. Meaning it runs each time my foot space drops below 80 degrees.
5) Take comfort in layers. Sweatshirts, socks, jackets – if it’s cozy and allows for easy frequent bathroom breaks (did I mention I drink a lot of tea?), it’s fair game.
Things I don’t do:
1) Crank the heat – I’m cheap.
2) Cut my hair – it’s like an extra head blanket. Neck, too, if worn right. (The spring shall see ample hair trimmings.)
3) Leave the doors open. My office door is closed to the perfect cat-sized opening (they can open closed doors – even if they don’t want in, they just want the option.) The same goes for the first back door, which leads to the litter box-hosting laundry room.
4) Wear pajamas all day. As warm (and comfortable) as it may sound, I have to have some sense of schedule throughout the day. Even when getting plenty of work done, clothing has to be changed mid-morning at the latest. (And yes, other sweats are fair game … so long as they didn’t double as PJs.)
5) Wash my hair in the mornings. Blow dryers make me look ridiculous, warmth-providing as they may be. And considering my hair takes multiple hours to air-dry in colder weather, mid-day and nighttime washings are all I can handle. Unless I’ve reached a solid core temp (under blankets), or it’s above freezing outside, it can wait. One more perk to not having a physical co-worker – no one to judge your barfy hair.
Bundle up, it’s going to be a long – and yet still glorious – winter season.