Monday, September 12, 2011

Early Winter Preparation

I know, I shouldn't be talking about it. It comes quicker every year. Like it or not, winter will be here soon, but it is never too soon to start getting ready. I start preparing for winter early on in the season,  to keep my family warm, safe and comfortable. There are many little steps that can be taken and most will not take much time at all. Start now so that when winter comes, you are warm and cosy.

* Caulk around drafty windows and doors. To check for drafts, close all windows on a windy day, then hold a lit candle up. Move it slowly around the border of the window. If the flame flickers, you've got a draft.

* Make draft busters for all doors. These can easily be made by using a leg from an old pair of pants, tying on end closed, stuffing (with anything from a rolled up towel, scraps of yarn, old rags) and tying the other end closed. Just lay them at the bottom of the door-either the outside door, or to a room that you want to keep warm (or cool) so air doesn't move between rooms.

* Start shopping for more blankets. Thrift shops and any yard sales still going on will have them at good prices. If you wait until winter is here, the selection (and price) will be less desirable.

* Make blankets. If you craft, make an afghan, quilt or blanket.Since it takes forever to crochet an afghan, starting now will allow you to cuddle under the length of it while you finish it later.

* Stockpile food. You don't want to be one of those people crowding at the grocery because there's a storm on its way. Stock up when you find something on sale and have a coupon. Fill the freezer with meat and veggies. Have some canned foods that can be heated for easy meals if you can't get to the grocery.

* Evaluate your wardrobe. Do you have warm pants, long sleeved shirts, flannels, warm socks, scarves, a good coat with no rips, winter boots that will repel water and keep your toes warm, ear muffs, hats, and gloves or mittens that actually block the wind? Find your weaknesses and fill them with thrift store finds. Once November gets here, you won't be able to find this stuff easily at thrift stores and you'll be forced to buy new.

* Take care of the house and lawn. Any odd jobs that need done around the homestead should be done sooner rather than later. Mend the fence, fix the roof on the chicken coop, clean out the dryer vent. Get it all out of the way so you won't have to think about it when it's cold.

* Get a new apartment. If you are in the market for a new apartment that you'll be in this winter, it is worth considering your utility bills. Since heat rises, look for a second or third story apartment so you can take advantage of your downstairs neighbor's lost heat. Consider if the bedroom is against an interior wall or an exterior wall, as the exterior walls allow a lot of cold in. Consider where the air will flow in when you open the door. In my current apartment, the front door lets in a lot of air directly into the room I sleep in, which will not work during winter.

By getting a few of these little jobs out of the way now, you can lower your bills and increase your comfort levels during the frigid months.

Happy living!

1 comment:

  1. If you buy anything fabric (clothing, blankets, furniture) from a thrift or used store make sure you take the time to check for bed bugs. Some people don't think that it is a real issue, but a few easy steps and you can save yourself a world of hurt and expense and illness, just in case.


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