20 April 2013

On Winter and Discontent

Note: I started writing this post about 3 months ago and never finished it. Today, in late April, we woke up to a dusting of snow on the ground and our car windshields, so I think it is about time to post it.

This is a post about the weather. Well, it's sort of a post about frugality and moving around, too.

I have officially survived my first Midwestern winter. Or so said the calendar. We got a snow dump less than a month ago and woke up to the white stuff today, so, uh, Happy Spring, y'all!
Here is a whiny mess of a list containing most of the reasons I hate cold weather:

1. First of all, I am a small person. And I am half-Middle Eastern. My body was straight-up not made for this mess. I also grew up in the Southeast, and everyone freaked out any time it dipped below 40. Including myself.

2. Which brings me to my next point: WEAR ALL THE CLOTHES. Experiencing winter in the Midwest is pretty much the least frugal thing I have ever done. Let's just take a little comparison in pictures because the camera does not lie!

(I was slightly pregnant/mostly bloated here.)
My wardrobe for 10 months of the year in (northern) Florida consisted of a $10 tank top or shirt, a $15 skirt, and $10 flip-flops. (And a 2¢ ponytail holder.) That is ALL. Total cost of outfit: $35.02

I put on a brave face for the camera. Perhaps my daughter will learn it some day.
My wardrobe for at least 5 months of the year (possibly more!) in northern Indiana consists of $10 long-sleeve shirt, $25 jeans, $10 fleece-lined leggings, $120 coat, $70 boots, $8 wool socks, $15 gloves, $15 hat (and possibly more). Total cost of outfit: $273.
[Yes, I know some of you can find coats at Goodwill, but sometimes you need something in your size that actually looks half-decent.]

3. Not only do I have to dress myself, I have to dress my baby. A baby who hates hats, gloves, socks, or really anything. And who could blame her? She spent the first 7 months of her life in just a onesie and a diaper.

Also, it is a pain in the butt if it's really cold, because it's not as safe to put her in the puffy coat in the car seat. That means on the coldest days, I have to put the coat on her to take her to the car, take the coat off once we are in the car, and then put it back on before we get out of the car.

Time is money, people!

4. Another frugality argument: warming the car up. We have a one-car garage, and B is the rightful user of it since he leaves for work at 6am. So my car sits outside, and it generally needs to be warmed up before going anywhere. What a waste of money. And time! It takes like 10 minutes before I can actually leave the house on a given day.

Then sometimes I have to scrape the ice/snow off the car!

5. No matter how many times I put lotion on my hands, the cold and dry air makes my skin crack. And it hurts. I ended up with a band-aid on my thumb for a good week or two. We keep a bottle of Jergens up on our bar, but I always forget about it. Or I remember it right before I do something that requires hand-washing directly after.

6. I've hardly been outside since October. I want to train for a 5k outdoors, but I refuse to run if the cold kicks into my lungs. (Note: I don't actually like running. Plus it would require special cold weather running gear, and that's more $$$.) My whole family needs some sun-provided Vitamin D (the good stuff!) pronto.

On a positive note, the Powers That Be uncovered the pool at our apartment complex this week. (Then it snowed, and I saw geese swimming in it this morning.) The local zoo opened today. (We'll go when the temp gets above 40°. Eh, maybe 50°.) Also, we are proud members of the local Y, which features both an indoor track and a heated indoor swimming pool. (And, among other things, an outdoor splash pad if it ever warms up enough to be used.)

If you're tired of me taking the "win" out of winter, you should go read something uplifting and somewhat cute about cold weather from somebody living in even-more-frigid North Dakota. Check out Kinsi's guest post on Messy Wife.

But if you want to continue shaking your angry fist in the air at Ma Nature, see this post from Wife of a Sailor about the winter that made her start hating winter.

"Winter is nature's way of saying, 'Up yours.'" - Robert Byrne


  1. I love this post I live in wisconsin and I know the feeling of the snow in April.

  2. As a Virginia gal (& born in Fla)

    my deepest condolences.

    that's just plain frigid & I would probably an Ice-B(word) queen

  3. I have always lived in Ohio but I HATE winter. And it seems that every year it is worse and colder. Maybe because I'm getting too old. (I'm only 34). Sigh. I live here because my family is here. Once we retire I'm outta here. In 20 more years. Another sigh! kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.