Warm-ups (Weekend Assignment #295)

Karen, our Weekend Assignment host, lives in the usually hot Arizona desert, but asks about winter weather this week:

Weekend Assignment #295: Even in Tucson, things can get a bit chilly on December nights. What is your favorite way to keep warm?

Extra Credit: What is the temperature setting on your thermostat?

Right now, the thermostat is set at 73, but the heat’s not turned on. I’ll switch it on and lower it to 69 overnight, and then bring it up to 73 again in the morning, when we crawl out of our warm beds and into showers that don’t warm up fast enough. But on a typical day, I’ll turn the heat off again before we leave the house. This is Southern California; the number of days each year when we actually have to heat the house all day long is probably in the low double digits.

Most of Southern California is naturally desert country, which means that there’s little humidity to hold the heat in, and nights definitely can get chilly. I notice a difference in just the couple of hours that elapse between when I get home from work and when I take my dog Gypsy out for her evening walk – the temperatures go down with the sun. I’ll bundle up in a fleece jacket while we’re out. If it’s a particularly cool night, I’ll warm myself up when we come back in with a hot drink (cocoa, tea, or decaf coffee with sweet milk, depending on my mood), slippers, and a cozy fleece throw over my lap while I watch TV with Tall Paul. When it’s time to call it a night, Gypsy will settle in at the foot of the bed until we turn the lights out; she’s usually on my side, since my legs are shorter and she has more room. But once I get under the covers, she jumps down to the floor and I can stretch my feet down into the nice warm spot she’s left for them.

Other things that help keep me warm:

  • Turtleneck sweaters
  • Fires in the fireplace (we have a fireplace, but we don’t use it)
  • Slipper socks
  • Soft blankets
  • Comfort food
Actually, I usually don’t have that much trouble finding a comfortable temperature at home – it’s my office that’s the challenge. It’s always cold in there, even with a space heater – year-round sweater weather, even when the outdoor temperatures are in the 90’s.

The holiday season seems to be the only time that some of us really welcome the cold – it just seems to add to the sense of Christmas in the air, I think. But a lot of folks don’t really have much use for wnter once the holidays are over, so it’s too bad that there’s usually months of it left. What are some of your favorite ways to warm up?

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  1. My hubbie loves to sleep in a cold room. So, we keep the thermostat on 63! However, I keep a space heater downstairs so that I can warm up in the mornings. My other favorite way to keep warm. . .cozy slippers!

  2. Amy RGB – We have tile floors downstairs, so it's slipper season for me too! I prefer a cooler (NOT cold!) room for sleeping myself, but I don't want to be shivering when I get out of the shower :-).

  3. Kathy (Bermudaonion) – Wet always seems to make cold feel colder, doesn't it? I don't really miss that part all that much :-).

    April – We should meet up soon and go get some :-)!

  4. Do you even need a fireplace in SoCal? It's going to be in the low 30s here the next few days, so I have no sympathy for you. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Our lower level is always cool so our thermostat is set a bit high. That way we can sweat upstairs. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Mike – We have the same issue with our house; in order to keep downstairs warm enough, upstairs gets TOO warm.

    And my husband would probably agree with you about the fireplace. He thinks the space could be much better used for something else.

  6. Ah, how evocative. You make me want to grab something fleecy, refill my mug of hot cocoa and curl up with my dogs, all at once! And slipper socks… yes, those would come in really handy right now.

  7. It's supposed to get down to 31 degrees tonight. ๐Ÿ™ I'll be bundled up under my mile high stack of blankets tonight. What sucks is that my bedroom is the coldest room in the house. I told my husband that I might camp out on the bathroom floor if it gets too bad–that's the warmest room in the house. I wouldn't really, but it works for the cats. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Slipper socks are a definite must for me when it's cold out.

  8. Wendy (Literary Feline) – It's a little colder out your way, evidently – our nighttime temperatures have stayed above freezing the last few days. But our bedroom is the warmest room in the house – we've had to keep the window open a crack!