Editorial: A woman’s point of view
For a lot of us, winter arrived early, and deep.
While we know it often takes a blizzard–or three–to end a drought, that doesn’t make it any easier to deal with the blizzard.
I’m by no means an expert, and I know lots of people have much more experience, and better ideas than I do, and I asked some of them for their input. We’ve learned a few things in our forays into the blizzards, and from a woman’s perspective, here’s a little wisdom.
1. Buy the good women’s coveralls. If you’ve never experienced the novelty of not wearing coveralls with the crotch halfway to your knees, it’s heavenly. Being able to navigate drifts without waddling, climb fences with (relative) ease… it will take about half the effort of trying to make-do with the men’s or youth versions. A bonus is that they come in “girly” colors, so it’s easy to find yours, and it discourages the men in the household from borrowing them.
If coveralls aren’t a good fit (because, shockingly, not all women are built the same), ski pants come in lots of colors, and varying warmth and water resistance levels.
2. Forget the jeans, if you’re going to wear coveralls all day. Warm, fuzzy leggings are the way to go. They tuck nicely into boots, and offer less resistance than jeans.
3. Socks matter. Soft, wool socks keep your feet warmer and drier than cheap cotton ones, and don’t make you hate your life if your feet sweat.
3. Get the pretty, warm boots. Even if they’re covered in manure and mud, there’s just a momentary lift when you look at your feet and see something pretty and colorful. And again, it makes it easy to find your boots on the porch. Also, get a boot-jack, to save your warm socks.
4. Buy the scarf. Spend the $40 on a good, pretty silk scarf. Once you wear one, you’ll never go back. And if you’re buying one, you might as well buy one you love. Pick the pretty colors, the loud print–whatever makes you happy. Because in the middle of the muck and the trudge of March, we need all the pretty and happy and bright and cheery we can get.
5. Give yourself permission to take the shortcuts. If you’re out all day, or even if you’re not, use the mix, find the instant, count on the frozen. You don’t have to make elaborate meals on top of doing all you need to do. Use the paper plates, make friends with the instant pot, crockpot and air fryer. Yes, taking care of your family is important, but so is your sanity and stress level.
6. Communicate what you need. Nobody reads minds well, and as women, we tend to be hesitant to take the time to evaluate what we need, much less vocalize it to someone who is already overwhelmed. But sometimes we need an extra hour to plan the meals, or a hand matching socks, or an afternoon to catch up on the books. We try to fit these things wherever we can, or put them off, adding to our own stress, tamped down and set aside. Communicating how we need to manage our chaos is kind of important to not losing our minds, sometimes. But start those conversations before everyone is stressed-out and short-tempered.
7. Take the moments. Allow yourself that extra two minutes to watch the sunset, savor the coffee, empty the dishwasher, fold the socks, snuggle the littles, throw the snowball, hook up the sled, pet the horse, laugh at the baby calves, take the picture. Because in this business, we have to grab those moments that help us stay sane, that remind us why we slog through the slop, and build the memories that mean so much. It only takes a minute, but it lasts forever.