5 things to squeeze in before the first frost in Chicago

It’s coming – and quickly. Winter in Chicago is a force to be reckoned with, so before the full force of a cranky Mother Nature descends on us, here are five ways to get ready for The Big Chill.

  • Go play outside. ALONE. Before the lakefront freezes over and your bike goes into winter hibernation, leave the kids behind and go play! A solo swing session, forest preserve walk, beach picnic with a pal or power ride down the bike path will help prepare your spirit for the big chill.
  • Stock up on sick-day supplies. The Cold and Flu Fiesta is coming to town and ya best be prepared. Reserve a part of the pantry for stuff you’ll need when that dreaded call comes in from the school nurse. Don’t forget: cans of ginger ale, liquid pain reliever, a working thermometer, sore-throat lollipops and a special “sick day sack” filled with goodies to keep ’em happy in bed. (Tip: Use a pillow case and stuff it with fave items and trinkets that come out only when they are sick.)
  • Get some new “don’t touch me” jammies. You know, those super cozy, ultra toasty, super un-sexy PJs you LOVE when the weather cools. That’s what my husband calls the “don’t touch me” jammies. Everyone needs a set. They don’t have to be expensive, but they do have to be irresistible, if only to you.
  • Hit the laundromat. When was the last time you washed those big ol’ blankets you pull out each fall? This year grab a latte, some trashy mags or your neglected bedside book and take a field trip to the cleaners. You’ll feel like a domestic goddess, and it’ll give you a couple hours of peace and quiet..
  • Lock yourself in the playroom. Some people nest and clear the clutter every spring. I think the season just before you’re about to be homebound a bit more is the ideal time to simplify your space. Take a half day, lock yourself in the land of LEGOs and slash and burn. My kids can rarely even tell what I’ve donated while they’re away. .
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