Yes, the holidays are over and a new year (actually, a new decade!) is squarely underway. But that hardly means that spring is on its way. In fact, depending on where you live around the country, it could be many months before the snow begins to thaw. If you could already use a dose of sunny summer energy in your life, check out these 10 ideas for channeling the spirit of summer to get through winter.
Do some feng shui work.
Add some lightness to your home by taking a few simple feng shui steps—such as the soul-lifting act of decluttering—and bring the airy feeling of those warm summer days into your life. “Bundling up and nesting in the winter can feel comforting at first, but can ultimately lead to feeling stuck in hibernation,” says feng shui expert Dana Claudat. “When you take even the first steps to declutter your home for a few minutes every day, you open up to a flow of energy that’s revitalizing and magnetic.”
Bring the light in.
While summer brings the year’s longest days, winter has the shortest ones. Thankfully, you can maximize the feeling of light in winter in small but helpful ways. “When you light lots of candles or light a fireplace, you can capture more of the exciting sparks and momentum of the summer months,” Claudat suggests. She also says you should “try getting up earlier and looking outside, or going outside, for a few minutes in the morning light to boost your mood and expand the hours of light in your life. And open your curtains and blinds more often to bring in more light all day long.”
Cook with summer produce.
Sure, there are plenty of reasons why you’d want to cook with local, in-season produce. But if you can get your hands on summery ingredients during the winter—even if it’s frozen or canned—you can give yourself a jolt of the warm season when you need it most. Think beets, corn, bell peppers, apricots, plums, cherries, blackberries, nectarines, strawberries, peaches, passion fruits, and melons.
Have fresh flowers in the house.
Fresh flowers have an effect on your senses of sight, smell, and touch. And a summery selection can really lighten your mood across the sensory spectrum. “Fresh flowers can bring the scent and feeling of endless summer to your home weekly, and surround you with creative inspiration,” Claudat says. “Rich fire colors—bright yellows, hot pinks, reds, and orchids—are amazing to wear and splash around your home to bring tropical warmth and excitement to every day.”
Sip a summery cocktail.
Nothing says summer like sugary sweet cocktails with a taste that immediately evokes tropical vacations—and the mai tai might be the mother of them all, with its rum, pineapple, and coconut flavors. (Drooling yet?) Cutwater Spirits just released a version you can get in a can: The Bali Hai Tiki Rum Mai Tai will transport you to a tropical beach this winter. Well, almost.
Surround yourself with breezy fragrances.
There are tons of ways to bring evocative summer smells into your life in the winter. Work on your perfect beach waves using the Sun Bum Texturizing Sea Spray that smells like sunblock. Light a scented candle, like Jemma Sands’ Waikiki, with notes of suntan oil and coconut. Or spritz on Bobbi Brown’s Beach fragrance, a vacation in an atomizer.
Wake up to fresh-squeezed juice.
Start your winter days with the treat of freshly squeezed orange juice, a little nod to summer for your palate, no matter how chilly the weather may be outside. Keep your stock of citrus fruits in a clear glass vessel on display in your kitchen for an extra dose of cheeriness all day long.
Fill your home with greenery.
When winter has stripped all the leaves from the trees outside your windows, you can bring a sense of summer back into the home by filling your space with lush, green plants. Many options are low cost, low maintenance, and beautiful, too. Plus, they cleanse the air, and cheer up the indoor environment.
Choose bright white bedding.
Even if you’re sleeping under heavy comforters in the wintertime, swapping out dark colors for crisp white options can brighten your bedroom and give it a summertime vibe, while still keeping you plenty warm. White gives the illusion of airiness, even if your bedding is heavily filled for seasonal coziness.
Make s’mores indoors.
S’mores are traditionally a summer favorite, whipped up around a campfire or beach bonfire. But they’re easily made indoors too, when the weather turns cold. Get that summertime taste by roasting your marshmallows over a fireplace, stovetop, or in the toaster… whatever works!