Ice, snow and biting winds can keep even the most adventurous families indoors all season. Whether you plan to curl up by the fire or take to the slopes for an annual ski trip, you’ll want to prepare your family for the colder months ahead. Here are just a few ways to winterize your home and car this year and get your family ready for the cold temperatures:
1. Stock Up on Essentials
Once the snow falls, you may not be able to leave your house for a few days, especially if the plow trucks can’t make it out right away. Even so, you’ll still need toilet paper, bread and eggs. Therefore, it’s wise to stock up on these and other essentials before winter arrives. Fill your pantry with nonperishable foods and have a kerosene or catalytic gas heater on hand in case you lose power during a winter storm.
2. Prepare Your Car
Winter travel can be tough on your car and passengers. Prepare them both for icy drives by getting a winter maintenance checkup. Make sure the tire chains fit, check the tire pressure and ensure every light, wiper and hose works correctly before the first storm. Prepare an emergency car kit as well and keep it in the trunk. Include a flashlight, batteries, blankets, snacks, hats, a first-aid kit and water in your emergency survival kit.
3. Close Off Unused Rooms
If you have an office or spare bedroom you rarely use, consider boarding it up for the winter. Close off these rooms and insulate the windows with caulk and weather stripping. Put a draft guard outside the door and turn off heat to the room if you have baseboard heat. Otherwise, it may be best to leave the vents open to improve your system’s efficiency.
4. Moisturize and Humidify
During the winter months, humidity levels drop significantly, meaning the air both indoors and out will become much drier. Consequently, you and your family may experience dry, cracking skin, dandruff and even nosebleeds. To combat skin damage and discomfort, keep lotion around the house and use a regular application routine to hydrate your skin. You might also keep a humidifier in your home to add moisture to the air and create a more comfortable atmosphere for your family.
5. Layer Up
Of course, you still want your kids to get outside and play during the winter months. However, you must protect them against the cold by dressing them in several thin layers. Often, kids won’t notice they’re getting cold until they begin experiencing hypothermia. If you notice them shivering or complaining about numb hands or fingers, warm them up inside and put an extra layer on them next time. Don’t forget to put on hats, scarves and gloves, too.
Having Fun This Winter
Winter is the perfect season to spend more time with your family and find new ways to have fun together. As the days grow shorter and temperatures drop, bundle up inside and light a fire in the hearth. Make hot chocolate, warm soups and enjoy everyone’s favorite comfort foods. Read books, play board games or build a fort in the living room. Most importantly, remember to have fun. After all, you shouldn’t just survive winter. You should enjoy it.