If you’ve been reading Coco’s Tea Party for a while you will no doubt have learnt a few key things about me. One, I find it impossible to walk past a cat without stopping to say hello. Two, I’m a massive Nora Ephron fangirl, and can pretty much quote When Harry Met Sally from start to finish. And, three, I am always cold. Like, truly, freezing.
So, it goes without saying that every year I feel like there’s a dark cloud looming over me when winter starts to approach. Not only do I struggle to stay warm, but I also suffer with seasonal affective disorder, and notice a dramatic shift in my mood when the days get shorter and gloomier.
I’ll always be a summer girl at heart, and I’m never going to relish frosty conditions. But I would like to find a way to glean some joy from the winter months. So, this season, I’ve teamed up with FitFlop to share four simple ways to enjoy winter when you’re more of a summer person. Read on for my tips…
Treat Yourself to a New “Cosy Kit”
As I predominantly work from home, you’ll usually find me dressed in pyjamas, slippers and a raggedy old dressing gown, throughout the winter months. It’s not particularly attractive, as I’m sure you can imagine. So, this year, I’ve given my “cosy kit” a much-needed update.
Helping to give my comfy loungewear more polish are FitFlop’s playful HOUSE slippers (pictured throughout). They’re made from double-faced shearling, so keep your toes super-toasty. Plus they’re biomechanically engineered, which essentially means they hug your feet like a cloud and provide maximum support and comfort. Honestly, it’s like my feet breathe a sigh of relief when I slip these on at the end of a long day!
And that’s not even the best part… Because for each pair of HOUSE slippers sold, FitFlop will donate 20% of the selling price to Habitat for Humanity. The global non-profit organisation helps families around the world build strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter. It’s a cause very close to my heart. (Find more about Habitat for Humanity, and how you can get involved in their projects, at the bottom of this post.)
The FitFlop HOUSE slippers come in two colour-ways: timberwolf with red pom poms, and charcoal with midnight blue pom poms. Treat yourself to a pair, or give them as a gift this Christmas.
“At FitFlop, we put our hearts and souls into making great footwear, because we believe great foundations create better lives. And while really good shoes are absolutely important, a decent home is the ultimate foundation.”
Marcia Kilgore, FitFlop Founder
Shop the HOUSE slippers here >>
Plan a Staycation
During the winter months all I want to do is run away to a tropical island and drink margaritas on the beach. But sadly I can’t take a 3-month long vacation. However, a weekend staycation is perfectly feasible, and it still provides a healthy hit of holiday endorphins.
The Henrietta Hotel in Covent Garden (pictured throughout) is currently my favourite hideout in London. It opened earlier this year, and is absolutely stunning. The rooms and suites have been beautifully designed – featuring Instagrammable touches of blush pink, marble, velvet and gold fixtures. You’ll definitely leave feeling revived.
Plus, the Henrietta Hotel also boasts a brilliant restaurant and bar. Their cocktail menu is particularly impressive, and I’ve had more than a few fun and boozy nights there since the hotel opened its doors. So whilst it may not be margaritas on the beach, it’s definitely the next best thing!
Where is your favourite place to take a winter staycation?
Prioritise Your Health
The worst thing about winter – after the freezing temperatures, of course – is the fact you’re so much more susceptible to illnesses. And it’s even more of a problem for anyone who works in a highly-populated office or takes public transport daily.
It’s incredibly draining to get hit with a nasty cold every few weeks, and it doesn’t do anything to help cultivate a positive mindset. So, throughout the winter, I try to protect my immune system as much as possible by taking Vitamin C, D and B12 supplements daily. Along with a healthy, balanced diet it helps to form a barrier against all of the nasty germs floating around London.
I also make a point of using hand sanitiser the very second I leave a gym class. It’s disgusting to think about, but so many germs get spread around at the gym, and it’s probably multiplied by 1,000 during the winter. So make germ-busting a top priority!
About Habitat for Humanity
Since 1976, Habitat for Humanity has worked tirelessly to provide access to decent housing for families in over 70 countries. From building homes and providing villages with clean drinking water to natural disaster relief and microfinance, the nonprofit organisation has now served over 10 million people worldwide.
There are many different ways you can get involved with Habitat for Humanity (you can even volunteer to join one of their house building trips around the world). So, if you’re curious, visit their Get Involved page for more information.
This probably sounds completely obvious, but I’ll mention it anyway… If you really struggle with a low mood during winter, and the season always feels never-ending to you, make a point of loading your diary up with fun events. If you have something to look forward to every week it will make the season pass a lot quicker. And these don’t have to be big events either. Something as simple as a cinema date night with your partner, drinks with the girls or ice skating with your nieces and nephews will do the trick.
It can be easy to fall into the habit of hibernating at home until March 1st rolls around. And whilst it is a real luxury to be able to curl up on the sofa in your FitFlop slippers and watch Netflix, you’ll definitely start to feel isolated and low if you do that every single night for three whole months.
So force yourself to make plans. You may not feel like it at first, but eventually you’ll be having so much fun you’ll barely notice how cold and gloomy it is outside…
Are you a summer or a winter person? And how do you get maximum enjoyment out of the winter months? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts…
~ This post was sponsored by FitFlop. Thank you for continuing to support the sponsors that make Coco’s Tea Party possible. ~
Photos by Lydia Collins