Surviving Winter

Call us wimps but winter does not bode well at the Land. Between the dreary wet weather (dunno how folks who brave the blizzard do it seasons after seasons), the germs, the constant heater/fireplace dry heat, we cave in, one by one, to the maladie. My particular one of the season is a massive sore throat and flaring eczemas.

Here are a few necessities that we have around the house to arm ourselves for the season:

  1. Humidifier.
    We run ours all-night-long. There are two types, the warm or the cool mist (aka ultrasonic). We chose the warm mist simply for safety & health reason: I know it is counter-intuitive to have a toddler and a warm mist humidifier, but we put our humidifier out of reach. The health reason is: with warm mist humidifier, you must change the water daily and clean up the mineral build-up periodically, or the humidifier quits working, forcing you to pay attention to the cleanliness of the humidifier that can easily harbor many germs and fungi. Warm mist humidifier is recommended by many physicians for those build-in safety reasons.
    Humidifier is a godsend for the skin, esp eczema sufferer like mine. No amount of creams, potions, lotions would help if the air humidity is close to zero due to artificial heat. Which lead us to necessity numero deux..
  2. Aquaphor.
    Great for everything, I really don't know why this humble ingredient must deserve such a bad rep. This bad boy has been touted as useless, even harmful product yet it is a true life-saver. I put it on the Toddler's nicks and cuts (the ones that scabs again and again since he keeps picking on it), on my eczema patches (after the first layer of strongest rx cortisone cream), itchy elbows/knees, cracked lips, anything you name it. 
  3. Zinc cold remedy.
    There are many controversies regarding this supplement but it works for us thus far. My favorite is Zicam since 1. the zinc can be sprayed away from the tastebuds and 2. the amount of zinc is the lowest of any other zinc preparation that I saw thus far and still works effectively for us. Don't discount this but do your own homework, too.
  4. Tea/Chai.
    Need I say more? I'm right now into the Blue Lotus Chai Powder: steeping is not required (so I can drink it pronto). Add a splash of almond milk, a little scoop of almond butter, or even rice protein powder and I have a delicious, hot breakfast drink that gets me ready for the day.
  5. Vitamin D.
    We don't get a lot of it here in the Pacific Northwest and supplement is the best substitute to the real sun. Do check your docs for dosages, etc.
  6. Eucalyptus essential oil.
    A staple, I use a few drops of this (and a few of lavender for fancier option) on a washcloth and drop the cloth on the shower floor/hang it from my shower caddy. It instantly transforms a mundane shower into an invigorating, luxurious, nose-clearing one.
In my ideal world, there will be an express delivery service of hot chicken soup, but for now, these will do. Do you have any necessities that help you survive winter?


  1. I absolutely have to agree on the humidifier, chai and essential oils front! My eczema has been flaring up as well, I've been using a ridiculously expensive moisturizer from my doctor to soothe it and it's all right so far. Hopefully this winter is over soon!

    1. Yes, humidifier is definitely a life-saver for sure, for pretty much any winter maladies. Thanks for stopping by! I hope you do survive the cold NY winter.