It may be snowing outside my window right now, but spring is on its way! March is a tricky month, especially here in New England, but if I can brave another week of cold, snowy weather, we all can. Cooper and Dante enjoyed a nice swim at the park last spring. Here's hoping the snow melts away before the end of April! And here are some ideas to help you get a jumpstart on spring.
1. Get outside! I know it sounds easy, but with all of the snow and cold we've had this winter, it's easier to cuddle up indoors to stay warm. However, your house has been shut away and it's important (especially before allergy season) to breathe in fresh, clean air. That said, open up the windows as soon as you can. Even on a warm 40+ degree winter day, it's good to air out the house. It also helps to dry things out while you're cleaning up. (See #2.)
2. Clean up. If you got a jump on your spring cleaning last month, now is the time to actually clean rather that purge and organize. I just cleaned out my fridge from top to bottom, wiped down the tops of upper cabinets, and now I'm getting ready to tackle dust from all of those hidden places. Our furniture has been locked down too, so it's a good idea to clean upholstery and carpeting. One thing I will note, if you have allergies, specifically mold or dust allergies, take caution. Wear a mask when dusting and opt for dry clean methods instead of wet where more mold and dust can grow. (Check out this ultimate spring cleaning guide.)
3. Rearrange the furniture. You don't have to spend money to redecorate your home, all you need is a little time and muscle. Move the sofa to take in a view, or spread out your seating arrangement or create a new one. Remove heavy drapes, blankets, and miscellaneous clutter. Consider redecorating your mantel or sideboard with fresh colors and materials. Start small and then dream and plan for future updates. Be inspired by these two posts: One-Day Makeover and Makeover Now and Later.
4. Indulge in a fresh bouquet of flowers. An $8 bunch of tulips will lighten your mood and infuse a little color into your home. Have you seen the $10 bouquets they offer at Whole Foods? I absolutely love them. You can tuck them just about anywhere and they last at least a week if not longer. You can see one of them on Kate's bedside table in this post.
5. Celebrate the little things. March is a very looong month. We just found out that Amanda's school is taking away a 4-day weekend (March is the only month without a scheduled day off) because of snow days, which means she has 7 long weeks to wait before her next break. So it's really important that I/we try and make the best of it by celebrating melting snow (fingers crossed), picking up her fitted prom dress, and St. Patrick's Day. Even if you're not Irish, it's okay to celebrate any way you'd like. Go all out and put together a themed dinner party, make a pot of Irish Beef Stew, or dress in your favorite shade of green.
6. Get moving. I'll be the first to admit that I have gotten way off track when it comes to exercising. And although I tend to slow down during the winter months, I don't usually take extended breaks or stop entirely. I want to be able to get on my bike as soon as the removal of snow and ice will widen the roads, so it's back to basics for me. Amanda has graciously lent me her stationary bike and it's been kicking my butt. I'm starting out slowly so I don't injure myself. (I'm still nursing a sore hip and now a rotator cuff issue from shoveling heavy snow!). It doesn't matter where you are—beginner or expert, or how far we've come—we all have to go back to the basics from time and time and never give up.
7. Extend your wardrobe. It's okay to go for a layered look as the seasons change, in fact, it's the best way to stretch your wardrobe without having to buy anything new. Jeans can be worn all year long and so can blouses. Just pair them with a cardigan or vest, layer blouses over a T, or add a warm scarf to see you through. You can wear lighter weight sweaters all year long and pare shorts with tights if that's the look you're going for. Warm up this winter to spring look with stockings (or leather boots) and a pretty scarf and/or light jacket and you'll get by just fine once the mercury has risen above freezing.
8. Start gardening. The earth certainly isn't ready for planting just yet, but that doesn't mean you can't start seedlings indoors. If you're not much of a gardener, I highly recommend planting herbs. Take it from someone who has killed more plants than I care to admit, herbs are (almost) bullet proof. And you can keep them indoors all year round if you prefer.
9. Plan your summer or vacation reading list now. I know some of you have already taken a holiday to a warm climate by this time, but for those of you who still plan to get away once the weather cooperates, it's time to shop. The girls and I have decided to theme our reading this summer. That's the plan right now, but I'm sure we'll throw in a few surprises. Check out Good Reads, the New York Times best sellers list, or check out these Pinterest boards to inspire you.
10. Go fly a kite. I'm back to 'get outside'! Kite flying has never been one of my favorite things to do, but I wouldn't mind watching someone else fly one as I was walking or biking on by. I think of them as little beacons of hope....yes, spring is here. Spring is here!
Thank you for reading this series, 10 Things to do in... . In case you missed any, here they are.