Immigrant stories · Lifestyle

My Take : 'Basic' Winter Must Haves

There are a bunch of things I wish I could have gone back in time and told a younger me. A few years younger. A new immigrant.

Moving from the tropics the biggest shock to my mind and body was getting used to seasons. What? No green trees year round! Wear different boots to walk in the snow. Summer sun in the North East, gives sun burns! Flowers bloom only once a year. The river freezes. Must wear different clothes. Layers- What?

Anyways, winter posed the most difficulties. In terms of dealing with 20 degree days to finding my way through 3 feet of snow these days are a complete opposite of 300 days of summer! Besides who knew cold can give you a nose bleed or a chipped tooth. Obviously, you did if you grew up here in New York City!

Here is my list of things I absolutely need to get through winter days:

When I Am Outdoors

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Parka, gloves, cap and scarf! Almost ready to go out.
  1. My thick, long, North face Parka.
    – It’s crazy expensive for a new immigrant! But totally worth it. They are super warm and will allow you to walk around town on the coldest and windiest days.
  2. A wrap to wear over your clothes and under the parka ( for when you go into a restaurant or friends apartment.)
  3. A calf high fur lined pair of boots
    – Make sure they have good grip. They must be warm, comfortable to walk in and light. Mine are North Face’s Janey Boots. I swear by them! (I promise I am not being paid by NorthFace to promote their stuff!)
  4. A selection of warm scarves.
    – I mean one will do. But I love color and I am a woman!! Those $5 ones from the street work wonders.
  5. Thermal fleece lined gloves.
    – It helps if they are touch screen.
  6. A fleece winter cap.
    I have collected a few over the years. But the ones that cover my ears are the best and the ones I wear all the time.
  7. Thermal inner pants aka long johns.
    I got mine from Uniqlo. They are cheap and are pretty comfortable under my regular summer pants.
Photo Feb 14, 9 17 15
I feel like a black ball!! But a warm and cozy black ball!

In The Home:

  1. Oil heater
    – Air heaters kill me! The kind that are used to heat and cool your apartments. Well… These oil heaters in your home, take a while to warm up but heat the place so well without blowing out hot air and drying up the whole damn apartment. ( I do not know how well they work in large apartments though.)
  2. Humidifier
    – A good humidifier maintains the moisture in the apartment. It also helps warm the air if it a warm mist humidifier thus increasing the comfort of the apartment.
  3. A good down duvet with a cover.
    – A down comforter or duvet is essential from fall through winter. I have realized it is warmer if it is inserted into a cotton cover. Also snuggling up with someone helps getting warming up quickly.
  4. Electric foot blanket
    – What is it with woman and cold feet? My feet are permanent size 8 icicles. This foot blanket is a wonder. Once my feet are warm, the rest of me automatically follows them to warm heaven!
  5. Tons of body lotion and oil to prevent my skin from drying up.
    It’s like, when I get out of the shower, I have a second bath with lotion!!
  6. A nice sweater that keeps me warm and allows me to bear some of the cold that my body still feels.
    It’s been used to 85 degrees all it’s life. I doubt the body will ever feel warm in NYC winters!
Photo Jan 25, 4 19 21 PM
Misty humidifier!

What are your winter essentials? I am still learning to live in an area with different seasons and weather. I have lots to learn. Would love to know your must haves!

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