If January and February were people, they’d be the type who turn up uninvited to your house, demand endless cups of tea while critiquing your decor, and outstay their welcome. They’d be the relatives no one wants to invite to the family party. The colleagues no one wants to work with. The neighbour you always avoid.
January is my worst month of the year, but February comes a close second. Christmas is over. Diets are on (well, they’re meant to be anyway). The bank balance is squeezed. And everyone’s just generally hacked off.
For us, January’s been a very tough month. We’ve battled baby silent reflux and nights of no sleep. Family time has been fraught and we’ve all (the four year old included) just wanted to crawl into bed and hibernate until springtime.
There’ve been a few things I’ve done to pep up my energy levels and give myself a bit of tlc since Christmas. It might sound indulgent but I’m a firm believer that if you don’t look after yourself you can’t properly look after anyone else. Finding a half hour in my week to have a hot bubble bath, or read a magazine or watch my (current) favourite show on Netflix can make all the difference between being a happy, patient mum the next day or being a grumpy, shouty one. I’m a human, not a machine, after all.
Here are five things that are making my winter more bearable:
1) The Good Wife
My latest Netflix addiction, The Good Wife has kept me company on many a breastfeeding session and long bubble bath. I found The Good Wife after finishing Gossip Girl (also on Netflix) and feeling bereft without a current TV series to binge-watch while sitting underneath a sleeping baby. (If you’re after more series recommendations, here are some other shows I love.)
2) Smelly candles
Come Friday night, I love nothing more than clearing all of the toys, crayons, random bits of scrap paper and over-priced kids’ magazines out of my living room and lighting a smelly candle. Even when the log burner’s not lit, a flickering candle can instantly ramp up the cosy in our living room.
3) Pampering beauty products
My skin’s been battered by a combination of post-pregnancy hormones and freezing cold weather recently. In a battle to get rid of the dry patches and diminish the under-eye bags (hello, sleep deprivation), I’ve been using some lovely products on my face. My favourite is the Hot Cloth Polish cleanser by Liz Earle, but I also love the Sophie La Girafe face cream that I’ve been stealing from my baby’s stash. I did a vlog about “New Mum Face” and the beauty buys I love recently, if you fancy a watch.
5) Interiors projects
Winter brings out a real nesting instinct in me. I know spring is the time we’re meant to get all house-happy, but I think there’s something to be said for being stuck indoors and forced to look at the four walls of a room and see it in a different way. We recently redecorated our dining / family room and it’s made a huge difference to my mood when I’m at home. I plan to blog about it once we get the last bits done, but having a fresh new room to hibernate in during the dark, cold days has really lifted my spirits in a way I didn’t expect.
What survival ingredients help you through the drag of January and February?
Disclosure: This post was written as a Netflix Stream Team member. All opinions, as ever, remain my own.