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Mental Health

Five Ways to Survive Second Winter (On A Budget)

If you’re like me and you go to a Midwestern school, you experience two different winters. The first winter is from late November to early January. This includes three major western holidays, which all-in-all makes winter way less sucky than the second winter. First winter is full of rom-coms, Santa, and celebrations. Second winter, which occurs from Mid-January to sometimes early April (thanks Climate Change), is full of slush, irritating black ice, and dry skin. As someone who enjoys winter in general and has an overall positive feeling toward it, I have compiled five inexpensive ideas/items to help make the second winter as enjoyable as the first one.


1. In Home Spa Day

So, it’s late February and you have no interest in braving the cold. Why not put on some whale sounds and treat yourself! Self-care shouldn’t stop just because the roads are icy. Steaming your pores is easy with boiled water (please just steam your face with the steam and not over heat, don’t burn yourselves) and finding recipes for homemade hair and face masks online is super easy! If you don’t feel like getting messy, Amazon (praise be) sells amazing Korean Sheet Masks for cheap! (16 different masks for $9.98!)

2. Embrace a Craft/Hobby

As much as the title might make you think I want you to take up blacksmithing in the winter, I was thinking something that eliminates the amount of molten material you have to handle. Binge Netflix and perfect a zoo’s worth of origami animals, learn to play the ukulele that is gathering dust in your closet, or even learn to knit. It doesn’t have to be artsy, but any opportunity to binge Netflix and feel productive is an opportunity I will take. YouTube is full of awesome How-To tutorials for pretty much anything you could want to do.

3. Organize Yourself

Okay. I get it. Cleaning out your closet or sifting through your desk seems like the last thing you’d want to do for second winter, but this is the best time to do it. Think how awesome it will be when you get to go enjoy the warmth of spring while everyone else is spring-cleaning. Put on a fun playlist and follow the 30-day rule- if you won’t use it in the next thirty days and haven’t used it in the last thirty days, donate it! Also, maybe you’ll find your fifth-grade journal and forget all about cleaning.

4. Finish That Book

“What book?” you may be asking. THAT book. Either everyone else read it in Middle School and you haven’t yet (looking at you Tom Sawyer) or Oprah recommended it three years ago and the woman at the nail salon won’t shut up about it. Curl up with a cup of tea and a cozy blanket and get through it. Finally, you’ll no longer have to fake your way through every conversation about it. Kick back, relax and get lost in the pages.

5. Get Out of the House

Seems obvious, right? However, cabin fever is super real. You will start losing your mind if you spend too much time inside. I know this from personal experience of running out of things to do after two days of constant Internet use. This doesn’t inherently mean messing around in the woods in subzero weather, but volunteering at a local animal shelter, getting a part time job, or even just going for a walk once or twice a day just to escape the confines of your room. It’ll be worth it.

Overall, there are lots of things to do for second winter that don’t involve constant suffering or draining your wallet. Try one or try them all!  You won’t regret it.

My name is Katherine (Kate) Voigt. I'm a Theatre major with a Creative Writing minor at Denison University. I've always had a passion for writing and increasing the amount of women in the world of online creating. Feel free to ask me any questions you have!
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