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Cures for the winter blahs


Mary Jane Owen

  I learned a long time ago that life waxes and wanes. By that I mean that life has its “ups and downs,” good times and bad. As a result of my Dad’s influence, I’m more an optimist than a pessimist, but now and then I do get the wintertime blues. It is easy to get down in the dumps because it’s cold, windy, and rainy (but frankly, that isn’t all that bad, considering recent drought). I just find the winter months to be less fun, less interesting and a bit of a letdown after the string of holidays beginning with Halloween and ending with New Year’s Eve.

  This can be a dangerous thing for me and often my solution to this is to elect to do something stupid, foolish and sometimes expensive. One such winter, I upped and bought myself a fur coat. Very foolish. First of all, I could not afford it, not to mention that I really don’t approve of wearing apparel made of something that deprived Br’er Fox, Br’er Rabbit, or a poor lil’ old mink of what The Good Lord gave them. The point is I have been known to assuage my demons with something entirely irrational.

  I doubt that I’m alone in finding a variety of remedies for overcoming the blues. I guiltily think about my ancestors and know they likely did not have time to submit to the blahs. The women of the household had cows to milk, chickens to feed, yarn to spin, quilts to piece, butter to churn, and a hungry family to feed, rain or shine. I’m sure that if they got “down” they managed. Hard work is a great elixir. I can’t lay claim to doing a whole lot of that, in fact I agree with a saying that my favorite cousin always pointed out: “Hard work was not such a great thing because even mules turned their backsides to it!”  I do like to dig in the dirt, but it isn’t time for that. So I thought I’d make a list of possible cures for the “Winter Blahs.” See what you think and make your own list:

  10. Clean out drawers and closets and take stuff that you cannot possibly ever wear or use again to Goodwill or the Salvation Army. You are not likely to need a size two again. (If you can, good for you, but I can assure you, you have missed chocolate covered doughnuts and I do not feel sorry for you one bit).

  9. Polish the silver and wait for it to tarnish all over again, and then do it over.

  8. Clean out the fridge and put the moldy stuff in the garbage. If you have stuff that is only partially outdated, make a pot of soup or stew. Add lot of herbs and spices and call it comfort food. You won’t remember the vintage might be questionable.

  7. Do some on-line shopping and buy something you just love but cannot afford. Be sure to check the vendor’s return policy so you can un-do what you might regret later.

  6. Stay in your pajamas all day and watch bad TV. Don’t miss the Jerry Springer show and by no means should you miss one of the soap operas.

  5. Update your calendar for 2013. Make sure all of your addresses and phone numbers are up-to-date and legible so you won’t keep calling the wrong numbers and since they have “caller ID” they’ll call you back. That requires a plausible excuse. You do not want to admit that you cannot read your own handwriting or have misplaced your glasses.

  4. Organize all your cleaning materials so you won’t keep buying the same thing over and over again. You only need so much Clorox and one of WD-40 ought to do for awhile.

  3. Bake cookies and when it quits raining, take them to the neighbors. They’ll get fat, but you’ll look neighborly and thoughtful.

  2. Organize your old pictures. Throw away those that don’t flatter you and might later provide entertainment for your children when you “pass on.” Make notes and put dates on those you chose to keep. Lie about dates if you don’t wish to admit your age.

  1. Telephone as many of your old school mates as you can that are still alive. Laugh about pranks you pulled in high school and don’t forget to brag about your grandchildren. They’ll love you for it.

  When you complete this list, it’ll be July.


   Mary Jane Owen is a veteran educator. She has two children, one grandson. She’s an avid Braves fan, reads, writes, and gardens.




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