Because frostbite and complaining are just no fun.
Here in Boston, the wind blowing in off the Atlantic can be brutally unforgiving. The Charles River forms an alley for the wind to travel up, and sustained winter winds on a normal day can easily top 20 knots. When the temperature outside is 10 or 15 degrees, it makes getting around extremely uncomfortable if not downright dangerous. Since my dropping the kids off at school requires jumping in the car, fighting Boston traffic for 15 minutes, then trying to find a meter spot for five minutes on Beacon Hill (a sport unto itself), it’s important that the kids (and daddy) are properly winterized. So here is my list for proper kid and dad winterization;
- A hot breakfast: A hot brekky is imperative. We go for oatmeal with maple syrup, or rice cereal. It’s healthy, the kids like it, and it warms them up before the onslaught begins. If I have the time, blueberry pancakes are a favorite way to start the day.
- Proper footwear: Shoes and boots are the first line of defense since their little feet are the first things to hit the ground. Clara, my three year old, doesn’t understand that she can’t wear flip flops in November. But she’s learning- stepping into an icy puddle with flip-flops is a great motivator to wear boots.
- Jackets: Down, fleece, wool, cotton…it doesn’t really matter too much. The goal here is to stave off the blast of cold. The important thing is to layer your kids so they don’t roast, so we usually go t-shirt, long sleeve shirt or sweater, vest, and jacket.
- Hats and mitts: A nice fleece hat and fleece gloves are perfect for the kids.
They are soft, warm, and colorful. Of course, you can go old-school wool, but my kids can’t stand it- they just think it’s too itchy. I myself prefer these old, Norwegian sweaters and hats I find at thrift shops for five dollars. Those Nords are never wrong concerning cold weather. Maybe Smartwool isn’t as smart as it thinks.
- Water: I’m an avowed water lover. I drink probably close to two gallons a day. I love the taste, the cold freshness, and of course it’s hydration benefits. So I push water on the kids constantly, which they’re really starting to like. Just like daddy.
And once or twice a week, after the day is spent in school, bundling and unbundling for recess (they go out no matter the weather, which is great- it’s builds that New England character), when I pick them up, we go out for the most amazing hot chocolate you can imagine. Then we go home, light the wood stove, and slowly unpeel the layers of winter until we’re down to t-shirts and undies. Then we pretend we live in the old west and I tell the girls campfire stories about outlaws and wild horse roundups. That in itself almost makes winter here bearable. Not quite, but almost.
working as a green real estate broker in Boston. He received his degree in English literature.
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