Baby It’s Cold Outside

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I’m a native of Chicago. I graduated from high school in June of 1990. Within three months, I was living in Mississippi for college. My first semester there, I distinctly remember taking final exams in shorts and t-shirts. In December. From that moment forward, I never wanted to experience a Chicago winter again.

Thankfully, because our family lived in Mississippi, it wasn’t hard. Grandparents, aunts, and uncles all made the case for us to spend Christmas in Mississippi. My favorite time to visit Chicago is between May and September; and that’s what I’ve done for nearly 20 years.

But this year is different. This year our family has experienced loss beyond measure. This year, I decided that because my aging parents had been travelling non-stop, the kids and I would spend the Christmas holidays with them. In Chicago. 

Here’s the weather forecast for the week:

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Friends, let’s be honest here. 40 degrees is cold to me. Temperatures in the 20s are unreal. I have no idea how my Texas-bred children and I are supposed to manage this for a week. And in case you need further explanation of how I feel about the excessively cold weather. This says it all.

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That being said, the kids and I are now preparing for the next seven days in Chicago. This past weekend, winter blew into Dallas something fierce, and while it has warmed up, it put us in the mood for a white Christmas.

Here are a few things  we’re taking to make sure we stay warm:

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  1. Fuzzy Socks – A definite must. Did I mention that the heating system at my parents house is not a central heating system? Mmhmm. Apparently looking a a thermostat and adjusting it to your heart’s desire is just not a thing.

2. North Face Jacket – I have had my North Face jacket for about 3 years now and it has gotten me through some pretty cold days in Dallas. I’m taking it to Chicago and I have no doubt it will help me brave the elements there.

3. Gildan Hoodies – The kids and I each have at least 4 of these. The key to surviving a week of a Chicago winter is dressing in layers. Hoodies not only keep your body warm, they give added protection to your head and ears.

4. Ugg Boots – I know they’re expensive. I know they’re kind of trendy. They are also very warm. While I am taking another pair of shoes and a pair of riding boots, I am expecting to wear my Uggs most of the time. One of my teens is bringing her’s, the other one, well…let’s just say she doesn’t believe what the nickname Windy City really means yet.

5. Racoon Hat – This may seem a bit juvenile, but my son bought a racoon hat like this one two years ago and he loves it. Much to the dismay of his sisters, at age 16, the raccoon goes with us anywhere it can. I suggested that it make the trip to Chicago because, again, he needs all the warmth he can get.

That’s all I can think of now. But in the next 24 hours, I’m sure there will be more items. I’m really interested in hearing from you. Do you have any tips to share about braving a week in sub-zero temperatures?

P.S. Did you notice it’s snowing on the blog? We can thank our techie friends at WordPress for that. Happy Winter!

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