As the first of the frosts come, the rains pour and the trees drop their leaves, autumn is marking its territory. Staying cosy becomes increasingly important, particularly if you suffer from ill health, seasonal ailments, or chronic pain conditions that are worsened by inclement weather.
I flare up in all manner of ways when it’s cold so staying warm is a priority – without spending a fortune on heating bills and wasting energy. Here’s what I use, in case it helps you stay cosy.
Whether home made or shop bought, a wheat pillow can be warmed in the microwave and used to heat wherever most needs it. Smell great and can be bought for under £5, or made simply with old tights, wheat, and lavender if you want a nice smell. Add a cover made from an old t-shirt/cotton to make it look pretty if you want. If wheat is an issue, use rice instead.
Hot Water Bottles
Multiples are good. There are also body length hot water bottles which are on my wish list.
Fake fur throws
Fake fur feels snuggly. Use alone or in top of knitted blankets/a duvet. Make a nest. Add pillows to taste.
Elegant cashmere PJs are the dream. Mismatched long johns and holey jumpers in random colours, bought on eBay for under £10 is the reality.
An excellent bathrobe
…ideally generously sized with a hood, to put on top of whatever you are wearing as required, the second you get the shivers.
If it’s designed to keep someone warm when camping, it’s good for a chilly flat. Layers make all the difference. Again, eBay makes it much cheaper.
My dad was right. Waterproof and well fitted boots with a thick sole help feet stay warm. Boots lined with fake fur a bonus.
Cashmere are the dream. Stretchy towelling socks are the reality. Learning to knit my own socks is on my to do list.
Big, padded, unicorn slippers are my preference as they are so cosy (bought for a festival). They terrify next door’s cat so I have less ridiculous cosy slippers for when he comes round.
Home made is ideal – I batch cook then freeze it so I have something for days when pain stops play. Covent Garden soups are a tasty fallback, if you have more money to spend.
The ones in the tin are ideal for me though haven’t seen them around recently. Home made with your own jam means you can pretend it’s one of your 5 a day. Just add tinned custard.
A pot of tea for regular top ups without leaving nest is ideal.
Frozen ginger ice cubes plus honey and lemon juice from a bottle and boiling water is an instant warmer that seems to help ward off bugs.
Distracts from cold and means you have an abundance of scarves and hats, or even knitted blankets, to use. Yarn can often be bought cheaply in charity shops and found in freecycle/Wastenot groups to keep costs low. Also handy to make Christmas gifts and save money.
Not an option for everyone but the cat who lives next door often sneaks into my flat. Lying down with a contented cat sitting/lying on you can be pleasantly warming. See also dogs. Or humans if available and desired.
Baths are my guilty pleasure. I try to avoid having too many and use the water for plants as often as I can but when the cold has chilled me right through, a bath is the blissful start of the return to warmth.
Warming aromatherapy blends
I use ginger, black pepper, vanilla, orange, wintergreen or eucalyptus in random blends depending on my mood. Also useful for home made toiletries, which can save money (to help raise funds for those cashmere pyjamas).
Staying warm takes effort but a cosy set up makes a grey afternoon so much easier to bear.