The lockdown condition of spring and summer seasons was bearable, thanks to long, sunny days and warm weather. However, as I look to the future and think of the cool-cold days ahead, I feel that spending the next six months within four walls could become challenging. I almost want to beg to these sunshine days, "Please stay a bit longer."
America is fearing a second wave of the coronavirus in the fall. Health experts are worried about how dire the situation may look like in the fall and winter, the seasons when the influenza virus also circulates. Second wave or not, my daughter's school is not reopening for in-person classes this year and my husband will continue to work from home until at least the end of 2020.
I am preparing myself for the frigid, housebound days. I am a warm weather person all in all. I like to keep my windows open and let in the fresh air. I love summer mornings when sunshine pours through my east-facing windows. However, as cold days arrive and temperatures begin to dip and sunlight loses its intensity, I can no longer keep my windows open.
Unlike other years, this year, we cannot visit Dhaka or visit our extended family here in the US, or even go on a winter vacation. All of this means that I will have to do everything in my power to make the winter lockdown bearable.
Clothes and accessories
I made a small investment in clothing and accessories in summer. I figured under this long, continuous stay-at-home situation that dressing nice at home lifts my spirits. I have been wearing my "outside" clothes at home since March, mostly the cotton and linen dresses that I only used to wear outside. I have been also wearing lipstick and light jewellery, mostly necklaces and bracelets, in self-quarantine. They make me happy; they do!
I have already purchased a flannel dress and a pair of comfy sweatpants for the chilly days ahead. To stay cosy in winter, I am going to pair up my new and old sweatpants with light sweaters and cardigans.
Netflix and novels
Because I will be spending very little time outdoors (sad time for a gardener), I want to spend my leisure watching some good shows on Netflix. I want to go back to the shows that I abandoned half-way back in spring, because suddenly, the COVID-19 pandemic became the focus of my attention. I also want to finally start reading the books that have been collecting dust on my shelves.
I want to create some new and meaningful content for my column, blog, and YouTube channel. I want to sit with paper, brushes and paints and create new artworks to beat the cold weather blues. Winter can be a depressing season for a summer person, so my goal is to ensure I do not fall into a creative rut. If you are getting bored at home in this lockdown, try to find techniques to rekindle your artistic spark.
Foods and drinks
Yes, I will be consuming vitamin C to strengthen my immune system, but I might be indulging in some rich and comfort foods and drinks, too. What do I have on my mind? Hot cocoa, dark chocolate, Danish cookies, double-chocolate brownies, fried chicken, mutton biriyani and beef tehari!
Make home cosy for winter
Houseplants do not like drafts. My indoor plants need extra care this time of the year, but plants in home boost my mood, so I might bring home one or two new "green friends" in the fall. In the past, lighting fairy string lights and burning spicy, woody, warm-scented candles like rose, sandalwood, vanilla, orange, cinnamon, etc. in the cold season proved to have a relaxing effect on my mind. The flicker of a candle, its aroma and gentle glow create that perfect ambience your mind needs during stressful times. I want to try these time-tested tips again in the fall and winter.
Indeed, you are the best judge of your body and mind, so take control of your well-being, and do your utmost to make these unprecedented times bearable.