Some Help Bringing In the Spring
Written by Sassy Auburn on March 9, 2020
Soon, the cold temperatures of winter will give way to warmer, sunnier days of spring. Can I get an “AMEN!” up in here? It might not be great at first with some lingering remnants of the cold, bitter season but it is a glorious time of year bursting with possibilities for embracing what is new. Days continue to get longer, temperatures begin to get warmer, flowers start emerging and for the first time in a while, there actually seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel. You are anxious to see those flakes of snow disappear and green grass emerge. But the big question is… are you really ready for spring?
Before we get too jazzed for the days of a new season, we need prepare. This is the perfect time to say goodbye to the old cold and get things in order. To help you ‘spring into action’ (oh, that was bad) here are a few things you may want to get in order before the spring arrives:
Tackle that closet: Winter clothes take up so much room, so it will be nice to get some of those coats, sweaters and other bulky wardrobe items out of the way. Before you start dumping things into totes to push under the bed, go through everything and ask, “Did I wear that this season?” If the answer is no, don’t justify it with an excuse—let it go. Bag up clothes that didn’t get worn, are worn out or don’t fit. Ask friends or family first if they might be able to utilize what you have. After that, I usually get large garbage bag, a piece of paper and a pen and start itemizing. Write down a general description of each item before you bag it so you can check to see if it can be written off on your taxes next year as a donation. Don’t forget things like jewelry, accessories and shoes may be deductible too so don’t forget to go go through closets, boxes and drawers as well. And if that sock hasn’t found a mate in over a year, repurpose it for something else!
De-clutter the house: Are your holiday lights down yet? Are there still rolls of wrapping paper in the living room? How many pairs of boots are by the door? There is a big difference between spring cleaning and general de-cluttering, so don’t get overwhelmed when you look around at what has accumulated. Start by just looking for things out of place and put them back. Stay focused on just clearing obvious stuff and not digging into things as you put them away. Keep it simple by breaking it down to one room a day. You can get down and dirty with heavy duty cleaning once everything is put away.
Clean out your vehicle: Anyone who drives around in the winter months tends to collect the most random shit in their car. When it’s cold, we don’t want to make two trips from the car into the house so we leave stuff to bring in “later”. Well people… it’s later. Collect the shovels, extra gloves, hats, sunglasses, windshield fluid, you name it. Get rid of the garbage too. Fast food packages, soda bottles and used tissues seem to breed in the car during the winter. Once it’s all tidy inside, drive it to the car wash and give it a bath. You’ll be surprised how good you feel when you get in it on a nice day and your car is squeaky clean.
Reassess your diet: You may have made some health and fitness goals when the new year rang in. With a new season here, it’s important to see what foods are now in season so you can work them to your diet. Fresh foods that are in season definitely give you more vitamins and minerals than packaged, processed or grow-housed herbs, fruits and vegetables. Things to watch for this season are asparagus, sugar snap peas, beets, strawberries, melons, corn and bell peppers. Remember, just because it’s not warm enough in your area to grow some of these healthy treats doesn’t mean they aren’t growing somewhere else in the States. In addition to the health benefits, remember that seasonal items are also easier on your wallet too. Don’t forget to visit your local farmer’s market for the freshest foods in your area.
Get outside: You have been inside so much during the winter that you are probably ready to go insane. No excuses—this is the time to get out! First, when you are doing any of the other seasonal prep things inside or even in the car, open the windows! It might not be 70 degrees yet but you need to get that stale, germy air that has been inside for months and flush it out. Crack the windows while your sorting, cleaning or decluttering. Once that’s done, get outside. If it is still chilly, throw on an extra sweater or a coat and do a little walking. Being stuck inside with not much sunshine can decrease your Vitamin D levels. This can cause some people to have bone pain and muscle weakness. Others may have issues with their hair, nails, skin and just feeling all over blah. Of course, if these are of concern or new, see your doctor. But still get outside. A ten minute walk each day during the sun’s high time (11am – 2pm) will help you so much—physically and mentally.
Once you start undoing winter and prepping for the glories of spring, you may even want to think farther ahead to summer. Unless it’s a vacation that needs reservations, SLOOOOOW DOWN. Go at your pace, but be consistent. It takes 30 days, doing something every single day, to make a habit. Plus doing something little every day is way less overwhelming than trying to tackle everything at once. Now go out and get ready to catch some spring fever!