10 tips that you are going to need to make it through the winter

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Winter is a challenging time for many people. The cold and unpredictable weather create new challenges. You find yourself wanting to just hibernate until spring begins to bloom.
While that's a nice thought, it isn't necessarily practical. These 10 winter tips will help you prepare for the unexpected and create a peaceful, cozy winter for your family. This easy winter preparation will have you ready for the first snowflakes.
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1. Create hygge (h/t Your Nurturing Nook)
Hygge is the Danish notion of creating a cozy living through surrounding yourself with warmth and comfort. You eliminate the unnecessary and focus on the special moments and touches that bring warmth. You can start by including a moment in your day for a comforting hot cup of coffee, tea, or cocoa.
2. Stop drafts with a DIY draft stopper (h/t Kitchen Counter Chronicles)
Windows and doors can let in cold air drafts that chill you to the bone and cost you heating money. This DIY draft stopper is a simple scrap of fabric sewn into a tube and stuffed with plastic bags. Place it against a door or in your window to create a chic way to keep the chill out.
3. Install a smart thermostat (h/t Inhabitat)
A smart thermostat can save you up to $180 a year in reduced heating and cooling costs. Pre-programmed settings adjust your home's temperature for you to save you money and keep you comfortable. Many models can be monitored from your smart phone or computer - even when you aren't at home.
4. Find those hidden uninsulated areas (h/t The Domestic Diva)
Even brand new homes have areas that may be missing a bit of insulation. These areas can reduce your home's heating efficiency. For example, your outlets may not have any insulation behind them. All you need to do is remove them and tuck this safe switch plate and outlet sealer in place. You can find this product online or at your local home improvement store.
5. Dry out shoes quickly (h/t Lifehacker)
If your shoes are soaked, but you need them the next day you can easily help draw out the moisture using old newspapers. Stuff the shoe with newspaper and wrap it securely around the outside. The paper will help draw out moisture. If you shoes are extremely soaked, you may need to switch out the newspaper a few times.
6. Light a candle (h/t Yes and Yes)
Candles give off a warm and comforting glow. They also serve a second purpose - emergency lighting in the event of a power outage. Having a few candles on hand is always a good idea to help set the mood or light the night.
7. Simmer your way to good smells (h/t Make Haus)
A pot of winter ingredients simmering gently on your stove top gives your entire home a cozy and comforting warmth. Simply add natural ingredients that remind you of the holidays to a pot of water and simmer. You can include pine, oranges, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, lemon, vanilla, and even fruit juices. Just keep a close eye and add more water as needed.
8. Use homemade cough syrup to naturally feel better (h/t Traditional Cooking School)
A homemade cough syrup can help fight back a cold before it has a chance to set in. This one from Traditional Cooking School uses the power of thyme, ginger, honey, lemon, and cayenne to naturally fight illness with food. It can be simmered on the stovetop or cooked in an Insta Pot.
9. Change the direction of your ceiling fans (h/t The Krazy Coupon Lady)
Many people have no idea that their ceiling fans have two directions. One forces the flow of air down and one sucks it up. Changing the direction of your fan can help air circulate better for winter time. Look for a switch on the side of the ceiling fan or use the remote to change directions.
10. Insulate your boots (h/t Maya Makes)
Give your boots an added touch of warmth by inserting DIY winter insoles. Simply cut your own custom insoles from heavy felt and place in your favorite shoes. Wool is the perfect touch for preserving warmth while wicking away moisture.
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