I live in Minnesota… which means we’ve already had more than a few evenings with frost on the pumpkin.
I actually don’t mind the cooler weather. I’m a person who loves to wear big comfy sweaters and slipper socks. The changing weather helps me re-focus on those things that need to get done around the house.
Now is the time to get ready for winter:
Pack away those summer clothes. Make sure they’re clean and any repairs made. If you’re saving children’s clothing to pass on to a sibilng, put it in a labeled box (I like clear plastic bins myself). Label the other things for the garage sale now to save time. Start a donate and “take to consignment” box for some things. Make a “repurpose” pile for those things that you’ll turn into craft projects or cleaning rags.
Pull out the long sleeve shirts, sweaters, and jeans. If you haven’t done it already, this is a good time to do a quick inventory of any gaps you have in your wardrobe. Check to make sure that your mittens have mates and make a list of things you need. Be especially aware of snowpants and boot needs for the kiddos, as these things tend to disappear from the store shelves when the first snow falls.
Finish those outside home projects. Put your garden to bed and finish up those last minute outdoor painting projects.
Give your house a good cleaning. You’ll be happy you gave the house one last good airing out before you have to keep it shut up for the winter.
Weatherize your home. One of the most simple things you can do to save money and energy is to make sure your house is ready for the winter months. Seal the cracks around doors and windows and replace the weather stripping where it’s needed.
Install a programmable thermostat. A programmable thermostat can save a ton of money by keeping your home cooler when no one is home (or when you’re sleeping). Of course, if you want to save yourself $50 to $100 you can remember to change your own thermostat every time you leave the house or go to bed.
Add hearty, yet economical soups and stews, and homemade breads to your dinner menu. You’ll fill your tummy and warm your home at the same time.
Plan activities for days you are stuck indoors. Where I live, winter can mean a week or two of -30 º F weather. Be prepared with cheap things to do with your kids when you can’t get outside to play. Stop by your local thrift store and pick up puzzles or board games. Search the internet for craft ideas and printables. Make your own playdough.
Start planning ahead for the holidays. Make your budget, make your list, and start working on it now before the rush of the season gets to you.
Fall is one of my favorite times of year. It’s a beautiful season, full of possibility. Be ready.