If there is one word that I can use to describe the month of January 2015 thus far, it would be this one.
Now I know how the poor people in "Frozen" felt when Queen Elsa froze her entire kingdom with just a couple of touches. If she were a real, living character, most of us in this part of the world would be screaming at her to LET IT GO!
(Sorry, I had to get one "Frozen" pun in there.)
Just to put things into perspective here in Ontario, last night our temperature went down to -26 degrees Celsius. Converting that into Fahrenheit for my American readers, that equals to -15.
Yes, it is definitely the time of year in which Jack Frost has seemingly gotten shacked up with Mother Nature, and the end result has spawned a demon child determined to freeze every single thing he touches.
Hey, I wonder if that's how Batman's "Mr. Freeze" came to be.
How am I coping with this bitter coldness that has permeated the air lately? Honestly, I'm handling it quite well.
I suppose that part of the reason why this has been the case is because my internal body heat is quite high. It sucks in the summer because I sweat enough to probably fill up a child's wading pool, but in the winter it is a definite benefit. I guess a part of that could be attributed to the fact that I worked in frozen foods and dairy for quite a number of years. Maybe that could have helped me out in building my "immunity" towards the cold.
I also take great precautions to stay warm both outdoors and indoors. I wear the proper clothing items when going outdoors, I wear a hat and gloves if I am going to be out for an extended period of time, and I even have a set of flannel sheets on my bed at the moment to keep me warm during the frosty winter nights.
And, of course, there's also all the wonderful warm foods that you can eat and drink during this time of year.
To this day, I cannot resist a good old fashioned hot chocolate. Whether it's peppermint flavoured, dark chocolate, topped up with marshmallows or whipped cream, hot chocolate is definitely the best kind of drink to enjoy on the coldest days of the year.
Or, if you don't like chocolate, I suppose a cup of coffee would suffice. I'm not a huge coffee fan, but it is definitely the beverage of choice for most people I know. The lines at Tim Horton's on any given day speaks volumes about people and their coffee addictions - at least in this community, anyway.
And I am sure that you all have seen this commercial playing during the holiday season. I know that Christmas is all but a faded memory now, but this commercial for Campbell's soup seems very appropriate, given the subject of this blog is staying warm in extremely frigid temperatures. And really, what better way to ward off arctic chill than with a nice bowl of chicken noodle soup?
Oh, and when it comes to your pets, keep in mind that even though their bodies are mostly covered in fur, they can get extremely cold very quickly. Please bring your animals inside on really cold days. Their fur can only ward off the cold for so long, and their paws can freeze on frozen surfaces.
And, also it goes without saying that in really cold weather, you should really limit your time outdoors as well. Stay inside, curl up in a nice warm room and read a book or watch a movie if you can.
You know, sometimes I think to myself that things aren't going the way that I want them to go, and I often wish that things could be different. But I will say that I consider myself lucky that I do have a warm place to go to whenever the weather gets a bit nippy. Not everybody in this world is that fortunate, and as I type this blog post out, there are thousands of people who do not have a place to call home, who wander the streets with just the clothes on their backs, trying desperately to stay warm in a cold world.
I wish that there were more shelters available for homeless people around this time of year so that people wouldn't have to suffer in the cold. But until that happens, the best thing we can do is offer support and compassion. After all, just because the weather outside is cold doesn't mean that we have to be the same way.
Just some food for thought this wintry day.