It is December 15th and its 45 degrees outside.
Not too bad for Iowa right?
Except for tomorrow it is supposed to snow and drop into the twenties.
I spent a lot of the winter season last year just like this…
Oh and like this…
To my surprise, my brain was conditioned into thinking that was going to be the norm.
So I’m writing this as a reminder to myself, but also as a little note to all of those preparing for your first Iowa Winter.
ONE. Pick Out Your Clothes The Night Before
This may sound silly, but it is the perfect solution. In the winter you may find it harder to get yourself out of the bed. Your bed just seems more warm, than the howling cold that awaits you. So if you are anything like me you will hit snooze a few more times than you should, and find yourself rushing minutes before the last bus comes. Do yourself a favor, have your clothes waiting for you when you jump up, you won’t regret it!
TWO. Dress In Layers
For some reason my millennial digital age self can’t understand this, but apparently big buildings are difficult to heat properly and evenly. Which means that if you dress like it’s negative 10 outside (which it probably will be), only to arrive to class where it feels like it’s 80 degrees… you will melt. I know what you are thinking, but no this is not a valid excuse for not participating fully in class discussions. Wear layers of clothing so that you can survive outside, and thrive inside. I usually wear a tank top, long sleeve shirt, with a hoodie or sweatshirt, and a Columbia coat. So if one of my classes turns out to be a sauna room, I just shed off what’s not needed. GENIUS! I know.
THREE. MOVE TO THE BACK OF THE CAMBUS
This one should totally be number 1, but I’m too lazy to go and change my blog post order. Have you ever waited outside for what seemed like forever in the freezing cold for a bus to pick you up and finally take you back to your dorm? How much of a relief do you feel once you finally get on the warm bus? Well what if that was stolen from you? It HAPPENS ALL THE TIME. How? Well, the bus shows up and it’s at “capacity” and so they can’t let you on. However, that isn’t always true. Students often get on the bus, and don’t fill the back of the bus, but instead hover near the exit doors (in the center of the bus) and near the front. To the driver, this makes the bus look full. People are all smooshed near the front, when in reality there is space and open seats up the stairs on the back of the bus. Please do everyone a favor, and move all the way to the back. It’s the Iowan thing to do. Plus you don’t want to be that kid that doesn’t make more space for others when I’m on the bus, I will shout at you. Its not fair, and its too cold for all of that.
FOUR. UGG Boots/Snow Boots
When I first arrived on campus I noticed UGG boots were all the rage. In the four and half years that I’ve been here, that has not changed come November weather. They are a little pricey, so go ahead and get your knock-off versions because I understand the struggle and nobody gets that close to your feet in the winter anyways!
Just as a heads up, most UGG boots are super comfy but are NOT waterproof. So by the end of the winter, all the water and salt (most widely used de-icing mechanism on campus) really messes ’em up. They’ll be almost unrecognizable. So you can do what my gma does for me spray ’em with water-proof spray ($10 at Walmart), it doesn’t do much to protect them from the salt but you can be sure your tootsies won’t get wet. Fun Fact: Did you know its perfectly normal and encouraged that you don’t wear socks with your UGGs? UGGs are designed to be worn without socks. With continued use, the wool will mold to the shape of your feet, creating a perfect fit. Sheepskin is a natural product which breathes, absorbs moisture and provides a warmth and comfort superior to any synthetics. According to their site sheepskin will not become smelly with wear, I might be the exception to that!
FIVE. STOCK UP
Unless you live in the residential halls, getting food when you need food becomes a brand new type of hassle. Plan a paired trip to the grocery store with a friend right before the weather gets too crazy. Get your canned soups, cough drops, frozen vegetables, hot cocoa packets, and Easy Mac to last you a little longer than usual. Trust me, you won’t regret it.
Follow these tips and you will definitely be a happier snow-herky.
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