Thursday, October 20, 2011

Hot Tips for Cold Nights

I'm a temperature wuss.  No really.  I'm a California native.  A SOUTHERN California native.  Yes, I ultimately braved the freezing cold temperatures to move to the San Francisco Bay Area.  That first winter was tough!  Eventually, I adapted - sort of.

But when you cross the green in me with the wimp, you do get something slightly more respectable. I've been doing Crunchy Chicken's Freeze Your Buns Challenge every winter since its inception in 2007.  I don't usually go below 64 degrees during the day and the heat off at night but still, here are my favorite survival tips for keeping warm anywhere.

1) Take Up a Warm Hobby - Knitting is good, crocheting is good, sewing works.  Something where you are working on something that keeps you warm.  In the winter, I often knit and whatever project I'm working on sits on my lap, warming me.  A laptop achieves the same thing. ;-)

2) Become One with Your Pets - We have a cat who we call the "Heater".  He likes to sleep below the covers and heats that bed up faster than hot water bottles or an electric blanket.

3) Double Or Nothing - Okay, remember that I am a wimp!  I double my socks at night before going to bed on a really cold night.  I've also been known to sleep in slippers and, when really desperate, a hoodie.  Remember what they say, feet cold, body cold.  Or something like that.

4) Open Up - Your oven door that is as well as your the lids on your stove-top pots and pans. Nothing warms the kitchen faster than a cooling oven.

5) Go Electric - We used to go with hot water bottles but they just don't do it like an electric blanket.  Of course, the whole sleeping surrounding by electrical waves or whatever does creep me out but most times, you can heat the bed up before you get in and your are golden.

How low will you go this year?  Will you freeze your buns off?  Any tips to keep help this warm weather girl go to 63 degrees?

* I'm linking to Thrifty Thursdays at Thrifty & Fabuless and Frugal Fridays at Life As Mom.


Chile said...

I don't remember what we set the thermostat at last winter. 65 maybe? Nights were 55 in the beginning, 50 by the end when we were tired of the high gas bills. We plan to layer a lot more this winter and keep the bills low. Unfortunately, or fortunately, the thermal underlayers I bought on sale at the end of last winter will not fit me this winter because I've lost 45 pounds.

I also hope to eventually get window quilts made to keep in more heat. Our double-pane windows are, sadly, just cheap crap. :(

Green Bean said...

Love the layering! And the lost 45 lbs. Holy local guacamole!

Elizabeth said...

Since our weather has passed the corner into cold now our furnace has come on a couple times already. We just had a new furnace/Air conditioner put in about 4 years ago and that is a big improvement over our old original-with-the-house 35 year old deal. We keep it about 62 round the clock. No one is home a lot during the day (children grown, we are at work) except one child and a dog in the afternoon and they spend most of the time on the sofa under an afghan anyways.

From the time I get home from work the oven and/or stove is on since cook all from scratch. My daughter and I spend most of the evening in the kitchen with our laptops, doing sewing, reading, canning, whatever. My husband, who feels the chill the most, has down booties and a fleece jacket he wears most of the time in the house.

I drink a lot of hot beverages in the fall, winter and spring (all pretty cold here). Wrapping my hands around a hot mug really helps. I also have severe arthritis to the point of disability (which is why we do not lower the heat so much at night)so if I feel too cold then we have to turn the heat back up. All our chairs have an afghan or blanket on them.

We don't have a large house and it faces south so does soak up heat during the day. Our bills have been very reasonable during the last few years.

Kim said...

Haven't turned the heat on yet but thinking to put the electric blanket & flannel sheets on bed tonight! Chilly sheets are no fun!

Betsy (Eco-Novice) said...

Great ideas. Although a native of a much colder clime, I find that I am now a CA wimp as well. Although, seriously, I think our home growing up was a more constant temp b/c of insulation and my parents' using the A/C or heat year-round.

Re: #2. Small children are also basically toaster ovens. Snuggling with one or both of my bunnies always keeps me toasty.

Love the idea of using electrical blankets/mattress pads to heat up the bed and then turning it off. I love wool and down in the winter on my bed too. I can keep my bed pretty toasty b/c of how those materials keep body heat in. My husband swears by his wool socks (from Costco and REI). You know what else keeps you warm at night? Sleeping with others -- my kids sleep together under a down comforter and they are always very toasty at night even w/o the heat.

Jenni @ RainyDayGardener said...

I've never used an electric blanket before, but I do find that on the coldest nights here, my down comforter is the best bet...and I second the flannel sheets.

Green Bean said...

@Elizabeth - Oh yes! The hot drinks. It does really help to wrap your hands around a warm mug.

@Kim - Flannel sheets are a must!

@Eco-Novice - Ha! Kids sure are heaters too.

@Jenni - Yes, we have a down comforter too and I don't think I could survive without it.


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