Mondays are Physical World Day here at Taking it to the Streets
It’s officially autumn, and to greet the first Monday of the new season Chicago is blustery – windy, rain, and pretty nippy. While this makes me want to have soup and light a fire in the fireplace – to curl up with a book and settle in – I know it’s also time to prepare for winter.
We’ve had some huge snowstorms in Chicago and the one in 1979 got my attention as the grocery store near my house ran out of food. We had snow blocking our cars in the city til April. I was ill-prepared.
For years after that I stockpiled food in the fall like a hungry squirrel with acorns. I don’t do that any more (perhaps I should!) but I do prepare for the colder months and for “cold and flu season”
Here’s some of the things I do:
- Prepare my yard for winter – taking in lawn furniture, hoses, etc. and all the stuff you do to put your yard to bed for the year (rake leaves, trim back the Rose of Sharon bush, etc.)
- Do the external part of the house the same favor – leaves out of gutters, check that everything looks snug and steady for winter (no loose shutters, put that black tar stuff around the skylight when need be, etc.)
- Get the chimney cleaned and a face cord of wood delivered – nothing like a nice fire on blustery winter night!
- Learned in that ’79 blizzard and I still do: check hat, gloves, scarf – clean? ready to wear? and (most importantly) put snow-seal on all winter boots
- Make sure my car has any needed maintenance things attended to – ready to go into winter – and clean the interior (as it doesn’t get cleaned again til spring)
- Wash my windows
- Stock up on cold/flu stuff: SmartWater or Gatorade, coca-cola, Oscillocnum, chicken soup. I always have vitamins and garlic and other herbs I might use on hand – just make sure the things I’m less likely to have are ready to rock
- Stock up on winter comfort foods. This year my friend Bill grew some amazing acorn squash – one of my favorite winter foods. I always have herbal teas on hand but drink more of them in the winter – a quick glance at the tea drawer lets me know if any favorites are running low.
- Move the lawn mower to the shed and the snow shovels to the garage
- Finally, a quick check in with Joey the Snow Plow Dude to make sure our deal is still on (more than 3″ and he plows without being called – less than 3″ and Molly Moonroof, my 4WD Subaru, can easily plow through the driveway on her own)
For lots of years I got a flu shot every year. Just like the media and Big Pharma tell you to do. And it never made an ounce of difference. I’m hoping that my better nutritional habits of this past year, besides providing a 25 lb weight loss, will provide stronger immunity to seasonal crud.
So that’s what I do to prepare for the season that is already in the on-deck circle. How about you? Do you make a conscious effort to prepare for winter? Live in a temperate climate where it is a non-issue? Wing it? I’d really like to know!