Winter can be so….blah. I make no secret of my distaste for winter. In fact, I mention it every chance I get. This winter I’m working hard to stay somewhat positive, however, making some changes in my diet and exercise routine and making sure I’m getting out and about a bit more than usual for winter.
One thing I really hate about winter is Valentine’s Day. I’ve been with the same “Valentine” for twenty-something years and we’ve definitely gotten sloppy about the day and I really don’t care. I make sure to give my kids some extra love that day (i.e. chocolate) and if the day falls on the weekend I’m sure to book a date night with my husband. Otherwise, I find the whole thing a bit ridiculous, in all honesty.
But, as I said, I’m trying to be more positive this winter so for my post for February I decided to focus not on the people I love (since I love them every day, not just on that ridiculous made up holiday) but on some of the things I’m loving right now that are helping me push through this season of misery.
I wrote a whole post on my new fitness obsession (you can read it here). Kickboxing warms me up when I’m cold, energizes me when I’m tired and blah, and makes me happy when I’m down. I’m getting stronger, more flexible, more coordinated, and I physically feel fantastic. This week I treated myself to new, heavier, silver gloves. My arms are going to look amazing after some bag rounds with these beauties. And they are so pretty.
I’ve drastically cut down on the amount of coffee, wine, and sugar I’m consuming. While I found that I’m not especially craving the coffee, I still do enjoy a cup of something warm in my hands in the afternoons and evenings. I’m also not really craving the junk food but I do enjoy something sweet after dinner. I used to drink a glass (or two) of wine. The sweetness took care of my need for “dessert” and the wine definitely cut the edge off of the caffeine I had consumed that day (or anything else that had made me edgy). Since the wine was also giving me headaches and making me feel rather lousy I’ve started drinking more green tea, specifically tea flavored with fruit. It’s warm, it’s sweet, and green tea has several health benefits that I certainly could use. I’ve become especially fond of this tea infused with purple acai blueberries. De-lish.
My Apple Watch
For Christmas I asked for an Apple watch. I said that I wanted to use it as a fitness tracker but really I just wanted it because it’s pretty and popular and fashionable. My husband told me that I absolutely did not need an Apple watch but surprised me with it anyway (reason number a million why he’s still my Valentine). One of my friends also got the watch for Christmas and a couple of weeks into January she noticed that I had one on my wrist as well. She then leaned in and said, “um…how does it work??” I, of course, had no idea. It looks fantastic and it’s the perfect accessory to any outfit–dressy, casual, or work out gear. My friend and I did take some time to figure out the fitness tracking features and I love that it vibrates when I get a text or call so I can keep my phone away and muted. And, just like my new silver kickboxing gloves, it’s so pretty.
My kids are getting older and busier. Every weekend feels crowded with games, events, lessons, and pleas to please hang out with friends. My husband works Saturdays which I originally adjusted to well since I spent the whole day driving the kids around and running errands anyway. Unfortunately, however, this has meant that Sundays are now the only day when we can attempt to do something as a family–even if that means just all being home and together. I just love “family time”. I love the sense of contentment I feel when all of my loves are all together, safe and happy. I treasure the times when it’s just the five of us off on an adventure or enjoying something together. If we go too long between good quality family time I can get a bit down and even a little anxious. It’s so important to me that my girls grow up knowing that our family unit is the most important team they’ll ever be on. I want them to know that we come first, always, and that we will always be there for each other. To me, the only real way to keep that feeling of “family” alive is to spend time together. This long President’s weekend we took our yearly trip to the Washington, DC area. Three days of just us and I loved every minute of it (even when they wouldn’t let me get a good picture no matter how long I stood there begging).
My Okay Journal
Despite my attempts to survive this winter I’ve still had some down days. A good friend of mine gave me this journal this fall and I’ve kept it on my desk at work. I’m not great about writing in it consistently but every page includes a motivational, but hilarious, quote. These quotes keep me going when I’m frustrated, make me laugh when I’m unhappy, or just help me push through a blah day. One of my favorites so far is:
“If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant.” ~ Anne Bradstreet
Anne is absolutely right but I’d love it if spring would arrive sooner rather than later. Until then, I’ll keep kicking and punching away my blues, soothing my soul with some tea and family time, and treating myself to something pretty every now and then.
*P.S. Fellow blogger Jessica is also helping me get through this winter with a smile. She helps me manage this site, inspires me on the daily, and, most importantly, I get to call her my friend.
*The author was not compensated in any way to promote the products or services mentioned in this post.