Friday, February 7, 2014

Challenge #5: Go Outside!!

Here's your challenge for this weekend/this coming week:

Go Outside!

Truly, no matter how wet, snowy, cold, etc your weather is, put on some clothes appropriate for conditions, and get yourself outside for at least half an hour.  Most people do not spend enough time outside any time of year, and especially in the winter.  Go outside.  The fresh air will do you good.  And half an hour is not going to kill you, even if your wind chills are twenty below zero, as long as you are dressed warmly.  That means hats, gloves, scarf over face, boots, heavy coat, and long johns under your jeans (if you don't have snow pants or other bibs for a second layer on top of jeans) for you northern people.

Now, what do you do outside for your half hour?  Well, maybe you just take a walk down the road--or on the sidewalks if you have them.  Or maybe you get silly and make a few snow angels in the yard.  Or maybe you just walk around and look at naked trees.

Really.  Look at those bare trees.  Up close, they are fascinating this time of year.  They aren't dead, they just have no leaves.  Look closely and you'll see the developing bud tips for this Spring's leaves and blossoms.  Look at the bark near the ends of the branches, and you might see a color difference from closer to the trunk.  That is new growth.

If you have equipment available to you, and ice or snow, take a snowmobile ride.  Or go skiing.  Or snow shoeing. Or sledding.  Or snowboarding.  Or ice skating.  Or even ice fishing!

If your snow is more wet than powdery, try making a snowman.  Or some snowballs.  Take someone outside with you and have a snowball fight.  Or a contest to see who can hit the most trees with snowballs (or the side of the house, just not the windows!).  Build a snow fort, or try your hand at igloo building.

Take your camera outside and practice a little amateur photography.  Just remember to keep the camera inside your coat (versus in your pocket) when you aren't actually aiming it at anything.  Your body heat will help keep those batteries warm.  Camera batteries (well, any battery, really) don't like cold and will die quicker the longer they are exposed to cold temperatures.

Winter is no season to avoid going outside. There are lots of enjoyable things to experience outdoors in the winter time. Get out there!

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