Oregonian winter is here and with it often comes what I like to call the “ho-hums.” The skies turn gray, it’s cold out and probably rainy. Our bodies slow down and seem to be perpetually fighting some kind of virus. Kids get whinier, our pets get cabin fever…
BUT, there are great things about Oregonian winters too. Things like, our winters are pretty mild compared to the midwest and east coast. Some of our best days at the beach are during clear winter days. When it snows it creates breathtaking views of Marys Peak to the west and the Cascade Mountains to the north, east and south. The evergreens can give us a sense of life while other plants go dormant. The “ho-hums” may be here but joy can be right around the corner if you know where to look.
Here is a list of some of my favorite things to do during winter to keep me from melting:
- Sledding/snowshoeing at Marys Peak – https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/siuslaw/recreation/recarea/?recid=42311
- Oregonian Light Tours – https://thatoregonlife.com/2015/12/13-best-places-in-oregon-to-see-christmas-lights/
- Go to a music concert – A great way to perk up your winter and get your dance on!
- Host a party of some kind – This usually forces me to get some housework done that’s been procrastinated. Also, parties are fun and they don’t have to be big and elaborate. Want to go big? Host a hoity-toity holiday bash. Prefer something more understated? Host a pj party with your BFFs and snuggle in for movies and warm beverages.
- Bake something – The warm smell of things in the oven can turn the my worst day into the yummiest.
- Sit outside and breathe – Science says that fresh air is good for our brains, lungs and overall well-being. Plus I’ve tested this multiple times and it works for me every time.
- Buy a gift for someone at the end of January and mail it to them – Sometimes the hardest time of year for people is right after the holidays. Getting mail that isn’t a bill is always a happy thing.
- Drive the Santiam Pass – If you are adventurous and have a vehicle that can navigate snow, this is one of my favorite drives in all of Oregon. You can stop at the Sisters Bakery for some of their incredible cheese or cinnamon bread, check out Tumalo Falls in the winter, or spend some time tootling around in Bend. The gorge in Redmond is breathtaking and Smith Rock is quiet and still.
- Build a fire and toast some s’mores or pop some corn – Whether it be in a fireplace, woodstove or your backyard firepit, a toasty fire warms the soul.
- Treat yo’self (any Parks and Rec fans out there?) – Give yourself a little something that can boost some joy.
If you have some ideas for fun winter things to do, feel free to share as a comment. Happy winter!