The magic of watching the snow fall, especially with young children who are embracing it for the first times, is a feeling you just can’t experience any other time of year.
☕ Enjoy a cup of peppermint hot chocolate.
Nothing says winter like a cup of comforting hot chocolate!
Peppermint candies and chocolate go so well together — the flavor profile is rich, fresh, and yummy! All you have to do to make homemade hot chocolate is add:
- 3 cups milk – any kind (unsweetened almond milk, whole cow’s milk, doesn’t matter)
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons sugar or pure maple syrup
- a pinch of coarse sea salt to a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir or whisk occasionally until the chocolate chips are completely melted and the hot chocolate is smooth and hot.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract then stir to combine.
- (if you don’t want peppermint, add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract instead)
💌 Send out appreciation cards to your loved ones.
Show your loved ones you care by sending them a handmade card. You can write them a short little note or sweet message. This is a great way to use up the plethora of kid artwork you probably have lying around.
🥤Stay hydrated and start a water log in your journal.
During winter, it’s just as important to stay hydrated as it is in the summer. The air is drier when it’s cold, so that can lead to dehydration. Also, you don’t sweat as often when it’s cold, which makes dehydration less noticeable. For this reason, think about starting a water log in your journal!
🍰 Bake yummy sweet treats.
For this day of the winter self care challenge list, bake treats and share them with someone! On Pinterest, there are so many delicious and festive recipes to choose from. One of my favorites is from a cozy murder mystery I read long ago which is now a Hallmark movie called Murder, She Baked. Kids and adults alike LOVE the name of these Ooey Gooey Chewey Cookie Bars and everyone loves the taste!— so fitting for a cold and snowy day. They’ll warm up your entire kitchen!
🕯 Decorate with twinkling lights and winter colors.
Turn your place into a winter self care haven with some cozy winter decor. No need to take down all the cozy that Christmas decor provides. Just upgrade it to winter with a white and blue theme, or white and pink, or whatever looks good to you! ❄❄
A couple of my recent faves:
I love buying pillow cases for my throw pillows which is an easy way to decorate seasonally without spending a lot. I love these that look like sweaters!
Twinkle lights make everything feel cheerful and cozy. You can get a whole wall of twink, as I’ve linked here, or put individual battery light strings in a mason jar and set them around nooks in your house.
This garland would be simple to DIY, and it is inexpensive to use as decor all winter long. It gives the perfect pop with just a smidge of glam.
🏠 Make a cute craft with the kids.
I know what you’re thinking, crafting with kids is self care?! When you get them used to crafting, it really is!
All you eventually have to do is get them started, snap a few photos for your Insta, and them call them back 87 times to clean up after themselves. It’s even easier if you buy craft kits, like these for easy DIY bird feeders, from local retailers or Etsy.
❄ Invest in a few winter wellness must-haves.
Because of the cold weather, it isn’t easy to go outside as often. In the Quad Cities, it’s already snowing and super chilly. If you’re inside for too long, you may feel sluggish or tired. Make sure you’re focusing on wellness and taking care of yourself. Check in with your body, stay hydrated, and create a fitness plan for snowy days.
Also, invest in a few wellness must-haves. For me and my kids, buying a humidifier is crucial.
When the air gets pretty dry, it can affect you more than you know. You’ll need to be hydrated from the inside as well as get moisture in the air during these dry midwest winters. We also added a few plants because they clean indoor air.
Top Wellness Finds:
This is similar to the one we have in my son’s room. Just running it the half of the week he sleeps at my house has stopped his lips and skin from chapping.
Plants just help not only to clean the air, but also to up your cozy factor in your home. This collection is perfect for people who have brown thumbs, such as myself.
This diffuser also acts as a humidifier. I love having my house smell good naturally and it also releases steam into the room. You can also just simmer water with spices to add delicious cozy scents and add moisture to the air.
🧡Do a Thank Attack!
What better way to feel good about yourself, and thereby do self care, than to show care and appreciation for someone else. Becca shares an easy way to be creative and socially distance while you show how thankful you are to have that person in your life.
📸Take a cozy photo (or polaroid) and post it on Insta!
Today, for your Winter Self Care Checklist, snap a photo that represents the beauty of winter! It could be trees with snow, a cup of hot chocolate, or even your coziest outfit of the day! You can pin the photo on your wall, start a dream board, or post it on Insta. Do whatever makes you the happiest!
💚Complete a random act of kindness.
Growing up, I loved to shovel. I would shovel the whole street just because I enjoyed having a task out in the snow. Looking back, it really made my neighbor’s day. For Day #10 of the winter self care checklist, do a random act of kindness. It can be as simple as paying for the coffee behind you in the drive-through or shoveling snow for an elderly neighbor.
For even more ideas, check out our QC Moms post — Random Acts of Niceness Ideas!
🌳Plan an outdoor activity.
Plan an outdoor activity like ice skating, skiing, sledding, or building a snow man!
🚙Go on a special car trip.
Visit our website look out for local events. One of our favorites coming up is Icestravaganza held in downtown Davenport. You can also check out our posts of road trips within 100 miles of the Quad Cities, Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. Make sure you call first to see what COVID changes have been made.
If you’re interested in visiting Chicago virtually, I recommend Christmas Around the World at the Museum of Science & Industry. You can visit the exhibit online for another couple weeks. It’s always a lot of fun and you learn about various cultures and traditions. Also, you can’t go wrong with shopping at the water tower!
🎁Give your neighbors a sweet gift.
Whether its a simple picture that your kids have drawn and you tape a $5 gift card to the back of it, or a basket of goodies specially baked and curated, your neighbors will love that you thought of them. Thinking of them and doing acts of goodwill for others will in turn be self care for you.
🧦Have a cozy night in — pjs, sitcoms, and a holiday candle!
On day #14 of the Winter Self Care Checklist, grab your PJs, turn on a hilarious sitcom or whatever makes you feel happy, and light a candle. I call that literally the coziest self care routine ever!
Cozy Night In Essentials:
Cozy Socks that come in a five pack so you could even gift a few pairs and keep some for yourself. [xyz-ihs snippet=”cozy-socks-amazon-link”]
These locally made candles from Dirt Road Candle Company are as delicious as their scent names would lead you to believe. You can also pick them up at The Market: Journey to Joy in Moline.
🐶Donate blankets and food to an animal shelter.
Because animals deserve so much love and care, you and your kiddlets could pick up blankets and toys from Goodwill, make blankets from fleece as a craft project, or recycle newspapers there!
Here’s a list of 15 Things Your Rescue Shelter Needs!
🥕Make dinner with seasonal veggies.
Stock up on seasonal veggies this year. Vegetables that are in season can withstand the winter cold. They also give you the vitamins and minerals you need during this time of year. I’m a fan of parsnips, carrots, squash, and sweet potatoes.
Winter Recipe Ideas
- Winter Slow Cooker Recipes to Try Tonight by Jen
- An Entire Post Full of the Coziest Recipes You Could Imagine by Becky
- Healthy Cold Weather Comfort Foods Recipes by Lauren
🍿 Watch a cheesy movie.
And oh — there so many to choose from. In fact, here’s a giant list of the Coziest Movies on Netflix, The Coziest Movies on Amazon Prime, and the Coziest Movies on Disney +. You’re welcome!
🎲 Play a few nostalgic board games.
Host a game night at your place!
You can make popcorn, apple cider, and play classic board games.
When I was a kid, I cherished the nights we’d get together with a couple of other families and play games, like Pictionary and Scattagories. It was even fun as a teen when I could stop being cool for five seconds and just be a kid again.
This is really such a chill self care idea for the winter season!
Classic Board Games Your Whole Family Can Enjoy
[xyz-ihs snippet=”Uno”]🧶Knit or crochet yourself a cozy scarf and mittens.
Keep yourself warm with a DIY scarf, hat, or mittens. It’s a great skill to teach your kids and show them how you’re never too old to learn new things. If you’re a beginner like me, try out this fabulous tutorial by Ryan on YouTube. I really love showing my kids videos with men doing traditionally women crafts and vice versa.
🛀 Run a bath and listen to instrumental music
Sometimes, a nice hot bubble bath is so necessary. For day #19 of the winter self care checklist, run a relaxing bath. I love listening to youtube channels of cello music with fireplace sounds. You can find exactly what you’re craving on YouTube.
🎼 See a musical or show (even if it’s online).
Check out what shows are playing in the QCA. There are SO many amazing shows you can see right in your hometown! You can rent live shows at Circa ’21 and support local theater too. If you’re on a tight budget, you can also find a few classic shows on YouTube. Personally, I love The Nutcracker! Grab some popcorn and a cup of cocoa or tea –now it’s a truly lovely evening!
💤 Rest your body and take a nap.
During the winter, you may feel a bit more tired due to the lack of sunlight and shorter days. According to Sleep.org, 7-9 hours is a generally a healthy amount of sleep. A 20 minute midday nap also has quite a few health benefits! Personally, I have hard time keeping it to only 20 minutes when I do nap. Ultimately, it’s best to stay in tune with your body and rest when you need to!
🖍 Complete a page of an adult coloring book.
Coloring is super relaxing and fitting for the colder seasons! It’s a nice way to decompress after a long day. Plus, there are so many delightful coloring books for adults out there! You can find them at the Dollar Tree, but I like the sassy ones they have on Amazon or at book stores. Pick up a few coloring books and dedicate about 20 minutes to just sitting down and coloring. If you’re not alone, have your kids sit down and color with you. If possible, also turn off your phone and any electronics!
Fun Adult Coloring Books
🧳 Create a self care kit for traveling (or just pulling out at the end of a long day).
It’s crucial to take care of yourself while traveling. A good way to do this is by keeping a goodie bag (or box) of self care items. Maybe it’s a blanket, snacks, or a bottle of travel size shampoo. A cozy sweatshirt, your favorite slippers, some coconut oil scented with your most uplifting essential oil are good things to add.
🍃 Get some fresh air.
For Day #24 of your Winter Self List Checklist, go on a scenic hike or walk to a winter wonderland (or simply around your neighborhood)!
❄ Calm your mind with soft winter sounds.
There are a lot of calming wintery sounds to choose from as background noise. This Cozy Cabin Winter Ambiance video is instantly relaxing! What’s dreamier than spending a night at a cabin while it’s snowing outside? I put it on with my electric fireplace and just lean into the feeling of hygge that today’s winter self care checklist offers.
📸 Start a fun & meaningful project, like a digital scrapbook!
Shutterfly has a really easy way to make scrapbooks for the year. If you have the app, you can even get a free book every month. Rachel has some more fabulous ideas on what to do with all of those pictures you have stored on your phone.
📝Write down a list of goals for the New Year.
Spend 10-20 minutes jotting down a few of your biggest goals for 2020, and making a plan to make your goals reality this year. If you’re feeling inspired, you can even make a 2020 bucket list! If that seems like too much, just write down a few seasonally inspiring activities you’d like to do each month. Make them easy and fun like “Valentine mani/pedi” or “Spring decor”.
🤗 DIY winter themed skincare products — like body butter or shower scrub.
We’ve already discussed how dry the midwest air is in the Quad Cities this time of year. Bearing that in mind, make skincare a priority as the weather gets colder. Moisturize regularly, exfoliate in the shower, keep hand lotion or your homemade body butter at your desk, and don’t forget about sunscreen! Even though it’s not as sunny outside, you still need to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. Consider buying a facial moisturizer with SPF and make it a part of your morning routine.
You simply DIY some amazing skincare products for the perfect at-home spa day. My fave right now is this amazing sugar cookie body butter. They also have a peppermint cocoa version! How cute and perfect for winter!
📚 Read a book as the snow falls outside — don’t forget a blanket!
For the last day of the winter self care checklist challenge, cuddle up with a book you can’t put down. And of course… your comfiest blanket and warmest, softest sweatshirt!