This time of year, it’s easy to succumb to the winter blues—which is especially true if you live somewhere that gets dark early.
But before you sink too deeply into those winter doldrums, maybe it’s time to look at this time of year as something different. Rather than considering it too bleak to go outside, think of these days as the perfect excuse to stay in.
The best way to do this, I’ve found, is by creating a sort of daily winter ritual at home. Here are a few elements that have worked for me.
I’m based in London, which is known for its gray and gloom. And gloomy is it ever—our winter days are impossibly short this time of year, with the sun rising around 8 a.m. and setting around 4 p.m.
While twinkly lights and Christmas trees make it easier to accept in December, once the holiday decor goes away, it can feel especially dull. Unless, of course, you add more light.
My current fave? Rechargeable lamps and spotlights in places that aren’t naturally near an outlet. This season, I’ve added a small lamp to our bar cart, one to our built-in shelves, two to a sideboard in our kitchen, and small pocket uplights into the corners of our (non-working) fireplace.
I also strung a set of oversized colored lights along one wall of my kids’ room, giving them bursts of fun and color that feel extra magical when the outside world has little to offer.
I’m a huge proponent of flowers all year long, but never is it as important as this time of year. Fresh, preserved, or even faux—a bouquet of flowers feels like a little burst of optimism that spring will return. Plus, they add a splash of color when the sky is looking particularly overcast.
You can never have too many throw blankets, and though IRead more on thespruce.com