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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

What's Up Wednesday


Hi, everyone! Welcome to Wednesday.

Old Man Winter is being a bit of a crank this year, and I know many of us are looking for ways to make the frigid days and nights bearable. In the past, my family and I have been lucky enough to get away to someplace topical for a much needed break. This year, however, we are stuck in Wisconsin. We decided to remodel our basement, which leaves no money or time to get away, so I've had to look for other ways to fight the winter blues.

The best thing for me is to stay busy, and I usually get bitten by the organizing bug in January. This year I was determined to work on my office. If I want to write more, I need a comfy space, right? I still have work to do, but overall I'm happy with what I've accomplished. (I'm already thinking about Spring and what I want to do with the patio outside my office.)

This is my stretching area to the left - aka dog and kitty napping zone. I found out the hard way that regular stretching is a must when I'm writing.




And below is my reading area. Also a dog and kitty nap-approved area.
I asked my fellow Lady Scribes and our recurring guest bloggers what their favorite winter pick-me-ups are and here's what they had to say.


I'm not sure I have one favorite thing, but there are several small things that I look forward to in the winter. I have a wood burning stove and I don't light it unless it's below thirty degrees at night--which is a great reason to look forward to cold weather! Also, while I drink coffee all year, a cup of really hot coffee tastes better on a winter morning than a summer one. And finally, hot cereal for breakfast! Most winter mornings I have teff (a really nutritious whole grain) porridge with coconut milk, dates, and flaked coconut. It's warm, slightly sweet, and filling. And, since I don't eat hot cereal for breakfast in the summer, it's a winter treat. I might take a break from my teff to try this oatmeal porridge recipe, which also looks like a good winter pick-me-up, especially with the bright orange from the carrots.
~Jennifer Lohmann

My winter pick me up this year is Alka Seltzer Cold. Darn it! I never get sick! And this is twice this year already.
~ Aileen Fish

Coffee or cocoa. Nothing makes me feel better in winter than a warm drink and some fun characters--no matter whether those characters are my hubby and kids or in a book I'm reading/writing. 
~ Robin Delany

Okay, this is going to sound totally insane, but when the weather is cold I crave ice cream. I cannot explain it! So, for me, a winter pick-me-up is a dish of Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla or, if I'm feeling really in need of a pick-me-up, Blue Bell Banana Pudding flavor. Don't judge!
~ Suzanne Johnson 

I find I drink a lot more herbal tea in the winter.  My number one herbal tea is one that contains Echinacea. I start drinking the stuff has soon a the flue and cold season starts.  So far I have escaped being sick this winter (knock on wood).  Oh, and I also enjoy a cup of hot cocoa (not the instant stuff, but cocoa: hot milk, a dab of vanilla, sugar and a dash of salt - yum)  I am about out of tea at the moment and another storm just pounded us.  I would really like suggestions of the next tea to try if anyone has any. I'll be off to the store as soon as we dig out again.  Actually, I am not sure the tea or cocoa qualify as a pick me up since I tend to snuggle into a comfy chair when I drink either. Then again, maybe it is the herbal health teas that are keeping me going.  
~Jane Charles


For me, hot chocolate is a guaranteed pick-me-up. Every time I move to a new city, I make it my mission to seek out the cafe serving the best hot chocolate in town.  When I moved to my current town, I lucked out. I moved into an apartment right next door to the cutest cafe I've ever seen, and it serves amazing hot chocolate. 

I took this picture my first time at the cafe. Yes, that's frothy milk in a porcelain cup so large it's practically a trough. You add the chocolate chips yourself and stir till it's no longer gooey. And do you see that tower of whipped cream?? That's the best part. Dump that on top and you're guaranteed a creamy mustache and a white-tipped nose. Pure class.

Sadly, I've moved neighborhoods, so I haven't treated myself to an Elmer's hot chocolate yet this winter. I think I'm due for one soon!
~Kat Latham

So now it's your turn… What is your 
favorite winter pick-me-up? 

An organized office means clearing out bookshelves too. Three commenters will receive random books from these stacks. If you are interested, please leave your email address so I can reach you if your name is chosen. (US and Canada only)   



25 comments:

  1. All right, some of you know me and how much I hate winter. I grew up in California, so I have been spoiled by the idea of winter without snow. Now living in Montana, I have realize I was never meant to live in snow. My pick me is cuddle in a blanket and reading or watching a movie. Since I really don't have the patience to stick with a TV series any more. I also tend to bake more in the winter cause I wan to be warm, so the oven must be on.

    countessofmar(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. I feel for you, Melody. My first years of living in Wisconsin were tough. The only part I like is that we have a lot of sunny days, and it's extra bright with the snow. I need sunlight at least. I do my fair share of cuddling with my daughter and husband. I would cuddle with my son too, but he's 16. The most I'm going to get is having him in the same room. I have shows I watch with each one of them, so it's like our special time. I like movies, but I feel like it's more of a time commitment. I don't bake, but I would totally like to hang out at your house. ;D

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  2. For me it's getting a weekend away at the Bavarian Inn in Michigan. Pools, games, fine dining, music, it has it all and for a little while I can feel as though I traveled to Bavaria. It's lovely and once inside the hotel you really don't have to leave for anything.

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  3. I go for a Starbucks grande 8 pump vanilla steamer. If you have ever eaten snow ice cream, it kinda tastes the same!

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    1. Ooh! I've never tried snow ice cream, but I love vanilla! :)

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    2. Oh, I loved snow ice cream as a kid. Making a note to check this out next time I'm at Starbucks!

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  4. For me it is sitting in front of the electric fireplace with fragrant candles burning working on a jigsaw puzzle. Feel better just thinking about it.
    kathy(dot)nye(at)comcast(dot)com

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    1. Kathy,
      You are one of the winners of the stack of books, but I keep getting an error when I try to email you. Could you send me an email with your mailing address? samantha@samanthagraceauthor.com

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  5. I hate winter and despite being from Michigan (and currently living in Pittsburgh) I still hate it. I wrote a blog post about what keeps me sane in winter; I think it says it best: http://eleventhstack.wordpress.com/2013/12/04/finding-the-good-in-winter/

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    1. Maria,
      You have a great strategy for fighting winter. Maybe some day you'll get to move someplace warmer so you don't have to deal with the cold anymore. :)

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  6. I LOVE seeing people's writing spaces! Thanks for sharing, Sam! I'm going to redo mine *really* soon. Our office is the only room that never got set up after the move, so Eric is working at Bella's tiny kid's table, surrounded by boxes. LOL!

    As for a winter pick-me-up...we'll find out soon! I haven't been in true "winter" in about two years. But we're heading to CT on Friday for a long weekend. I'm terrified, mostly of spending 5 days indoors with our 4-year-old. Hopefully there will be lots of hot chocolate in our future!

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    1. Jerrica,
      You'll have to post pictures when you get your office finished. You notice I'm ignoring your taunts about escaping from winter in your tropical paradise. ;p

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  7. Ok I'm done with snow ice rain and sleet. Philadelphia has had more winter storms than I can take. My winter pick-me-up is a hot bowl of grits and hot chocolate. Love it and curl up with a book in my room away from the kids. But they find me everytime

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    1. Mmm… grits with cheese! You're making me hungry. :)

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  8. My winter pick-me-up hot chocolate and cookies.
    jmcgaugh (at) semo (dot) edu

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  9. I'm like Susanne, I crave ice cream like crazy. I already went through three jugs of those hug 5 gallons already. Which now means I need to get some more. We still have 5 more weeks of winter you know.

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    1. Kipha,
      I'm with you and Suzanne. I love ice cream in the winter. It's too sweet and heavy for the summer, IMO. :)

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    2. Yay, another winter ice cream fan! I treated myself to butter pecan this afternoon in a balmy 42-degrees :-)

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  10. As much of a pain the snow is, I actually like to shovel. I am getting about the only sunlight & exercise I can get at this time of year! Other than that, reading - what else!

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    1. Shoveling actually isn't bad exercise and you warm up fast, but it's that initial cold that I dread. When we first moved to Wisconsin, we lived on a corner block. Our son was 18 months old and my husband lived in another town during the week finishing up his fellowship. I couldn't shovel until I had our son in bed and I hated it. It was dark, cold, and I had so much to do with two sidewalks. When we bought a house, one of my requirements was no corner lot. :)

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  11. And the winners are…
    Melody, Kissablysweet1, & knye
    Congratulations!

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