5 Ways to Transition into Winter (Bod Mag – DO NOT PUBLISH)

Colleen Kelly

The holiday season is upon us, and Kansas being Kansas, winter weather could strike any time after Thanksgiving. To get yourself ready for the transition from cozy

1. Invest in a quality coat

This one seems like an obvious piece of advice, but a lot of people still try to muddle through snowy weather with hoodies or jackets each year. It shouldn’t have to break the bank to keep warm and look good, but winter coats are often expensive investments, which is why I stress the word “quality” in this tip. Make sure that whatever coat you end up buying will last more than one snowy season. For athletes, North Face jackets often make the most sense when paired with Under Armour. Dick’s Sporting Goods generally sells these jackets for between $80-$120 depending on when you buy them, but websites like Amazon have been known to list new or gently used ones between $30-$60. For anyone looking for an actual winter coat, I’m plugging Amazon again, as well as JCPenney and Target for quality at a reasonable price. Whether you go with a knit material, nylon, or leather, be sure to get something with a hood and deep pockets to burrow into against winter winds. My personal favorite style is a classic peacoat, which looks great on both men and women. 

2. Stock up on winter car accessories

The last thing any of us want to do first thing in the morning or after a long day of classes is deal with car troubles, but it’s par for the course come winter time. One of the smartest purchases I have ever made was a scraper mitten, a thick nylon and wool mitten with a window ice scraper attached. Not only is it great for keeping your hands warm and dry while tediously defrosting your car, but it’s convenient to fit into your bag or backpack. I also suggest all drivers have jumper cables, deicer spray, and tire chains packed and readily available to accommodate less than ideal weather conditions.

3. Find your study space

Winter may be the holiday season, but it’s also finals season as well. With paper deadlines, group projects, and exams to prepare for, you need to find a venue that best suites your studying needs. Some people work best in the solitude of their homes/dorm rooms, others like the community and academic feel of a library, or maybe you’re like me and prefer the relaxed vibe of a coffee shop like PTs or Blackbird. Whatever your style is, figure out which venue is most conducive towards your concentration and comfort.  

4. Be proactive during cold and flu season

Maybe it’s the change in weather, maybe it’s the stress of school, work, and the holidays, but you are likely to get sick in some capacity no matter how you slice it. Prevent getting sick by washing your hands often or carrying around hand sanitizer, remember to wear a scarf to protect your throat, getting a flu shot, and at least attempting to get enough sleep to keep your immune system strong. Even if you do get sick (whether it’s the sniffles or a full blown virus), make sure that you have accumulated plenty of tea, cough drops, cold medicine, and tissues throughout Autumn. The last thing you will want to do when you’re running a fever or vomiting is make a tedious shopping trip to Walgreens or CVS when should be at home resting with Netflix.

5. Plan ahead for the holidays

There are two major events that hit in the dead of winter: Christmas/Hanukah and New Year’s Eve. Whether you celebrate these specific holidays or not, the impending holidays are still bound to affect you in some way. Be prepared for even more congested Topeka traffic than usual, bigger crowds at department stores, adjusted business hours, and sales galore. Once you’ve got a routine down or at least an idea of what to expect, I suggest you take advantage of the holiday sale season and finish your shopping no later than the second week of December. Start compiling ideas of what you or your loved ones would like and have a list of options ready by Thanksgiving. This gives you roughly two weeks to take advantage of sales and avoid stressing over shopping when the crowds are at their worst and everything is picked over. Once that is out of the way, you have the rest of December to plan what how you want to celebrate the holidays, weather that be a party, a vacation, or just staying in and getting cozy. You would be amazed how much more enjoyable the holidays are when you plan in advance and let yourself be present in the moment.