Things Minnesotans Can Do When It’s 15 Below

Today just happens to be one of those days Minnesota is famous for; the days when it’s dangerously cold out, snow covers the ground, nostrils stick together, and we ask the question “Cold enough for ya?” It’s hard to find things to do when the weather is so unforgiving, but luckily there are some things we can do to pass the time.

Make a pot of coffee to keep warm. Nothing warms up the soul like a steaming pot of liquid gold. If you want to get extra warm, make it Irish.

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See if your car starts. It’s always good to know what your car’s breaking point is, and if it happens to start, let it run for a bit- it’s good for it.

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Do a puzzle. This one is great, because it requires very minimum movement, but still keeps your brain entertained.

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Make a really good meal. This one is doubly good, because not only do you get some great food, but you also get to spend some time standing over a hot stove.

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Take a hot bath… provided the pipes aren’t frozen and you have running water.

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If it’s unbearably cold, don’t waste money turning up the heat. Simply heat up the oven, and crack the door. I guarantee this will warm up the house, and it has the added bonus of possible excitement if something goes wrong.

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Stand by a door or window and yell “F**k you, winter!” at the top of your lungs. Not only will this make you feel a little better, but maybe winter will hear you.

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Cuddle up into a blanket, and watch a movie. Everyone needs a little bit of warmth and relaxation. Reading a book is also a great alternative.

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Sleep. No matter the weather, sleep is always a good idea.

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If you must, bundle up tight and brave the cold. It’s only a matter of time before you’ll see the gleaming red lights of Target.

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This cold is no joke, so however you decided to spend your day, just be smart and safe. Especially if you’re a Minnesotan, you know the unwritten rules of winter; it’s always best to honor them. Stay warm, my dears! I’ll be spending my day bundled up inside.

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The Holiday Season

It’s been well over a month since I’ve last written something new. The only reason I can give is that life has been happening, which has resulted in an extreme lack of inspiration. We are all fully aware of how crazy the holiday season can be; preparing gifts, baking everyone’s favorite sweets, getting together with friends and family- it’s a busy time. We are all rushing around, trying desperately to get everything done on time, that we barely have time to stop and take a breath. Throw work and finals on top of that, and you have the perfect recipe for total exhaustion. As enjoyable as this time of year can be, it’s no secret that it takes its toll.

However, there are those rare moments where you just stop. The world falls away, as you seem to forget everything you have left to do, and you are just left in the void of your own mind. These are the moments when you remember why, despite all the hustle and bustle, this time of year is one that makes you smile. Now, I’m not a religious person, so I’m not going to preach about the Christian version of Christmas, or any other belief system.

I’m talking about us. We, as people, seem to give the world the best version of ourselves this time of year. The time of year when everyone seems just a little kinder, a little more compassionate, a little more understanding. We want the people in our lives to know how much they mean to us, so we try a little harder to get them to see. We spend hours trying to find the perfect gift. We stay up late creating something we hope they’ll enjoy. We bake cakes in jars. We make an effort to see them. We do all of this in hopes that we can make someone else’s life a little brighter.

Now don’t get me wrong; I know this time of year can be far from easy. Some of us come from broken families, that become more prominent during the holidays. Some of us have lost people we love, and this is when we miss them more than ever; when we feel their emptiness so much, it feels like we are suffocating. Some of us are reminded daily of how alone we are in the most brutal ways. But despite all of these things, we still try a little harder to be kind.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned during my time on this Earth, it’s that there are many things in life you will regret, but being kind is not one of them. It doesn’t cost you anything to be a good person. So, paint the picture. Bake the cakes. Wrap the presents. Spend time with your family. Reach out to your friends. Soak in the beauty of the trees, the lights, and the snow. Breathe in the crisp air and watch the flakes swirl and sparkle. Sing along to the music. Enjoy the holiday. I’ve said it many times before, and I’m saying it again: just because life is brutal doesn’t mean we have to be. How you treat other people matters; so, choose to treat people with compassion. Maybe if we acted the way we do at Christmas time all year round, this world wouldn’t be such a dark place. Happy Holidays to all of you, no matter what you are celebrating.

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