Surviving the Winter Wonderland The weather outside is frightful, and… well, hanging out by the fire would be delightful, but you’ve got bills to pay. Life doesn’t stop, not even for a foot of snow or sub-zero temperatures, and if you live in an area that’s no stranger to these conditions, it can introduce some very real threats and complications. But don’t worry—we’ve got your back. Here are some simple tips for surviving the winter wonderland.

  • Always brush up on next day’s forecast before bed so you can budget your schedule around a slower pace, lay out any prep you may need and set your alarm appropriately.
  • Keep an eye on changing weather conditions with a tracking app: Dark Sky can tell you, down to the minute, when snow will start; Waze is very helpful for tracking real-time traffic complications.
  • Get your car brushed off, started and defrosting a good ten minutes before you leave the house—and leave a little earlier than normal, just to ensure you get to your destination on time.
  • When walking in slippery conditions, keep your steps small, slow and set your whole foot down flat—no heel-to-toe walking or vice versa; more importantly, make sure your shoes have strong traction on the bottom.
  • If you drive in the winter, keep a canister of kitty litter in your trunk or back seat. If you’re stuck in a slippery spot and your tires aren’t getting any traction, put a bit of litter behind the tire to create extra grit.
  • When driving in wintery or icy conditions, keep your speed steady, driving below the speed limit and transitioning slowly between speed increases or decreases. In a rush? Nothing is more important than your life. Your schedule can wait.
  • Surviving the Winter Wonderland
  • ALWAYS keep an extra jacket or a blanket in the trunk of your car; you never know when you could need it. Other good items: water, nonperishable foods and an extra set of dry clothes.
  • Dress for the weather! Layering is key. Make sure your first, innermost layer of clothing is an insulating fabric (like wool) since it will be the closest to your skin. Your outermost layer should be resistant to the elements—waterproof and wind resistant.
  • When it comes time to shovel, warm up by stretching for at least five minutes before you start; this will warm and loosen up your muscles.
  • The biggest mistake people make shoveling is using the scoop technique; protect your back from injury by pushing the snow to the sides of your driveway instead of picking it up and twisting. This also eliminates strain to just one side of your body.