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Honouring Winter

 

As I wrote this a week ago I feel as if it had to be the coldest night of the year - I was curled up on my couch and while half of me can’t quite believe we are now half way through 2021, the other half of me is loving these winter vibes. It got me thinking how important it is to honour our natural rhythms - how there is a reason for each season. For me, this translates into how I feel, and what I focus my energy on. I’ve always honoured this idea and have looked to these seasonal rhythms for a natural guidance. Then we were thrown into 2020, a global pandemic and hard core lockdown here in South Africa, and I feel it totally threw these rhythms that we were so accustomed to. Winter last year was a crazy mix of pandemic panic, homeschooling chaos and not leaving the house.

 

So this year, more than ever, focusing on honouring our seasons and natural space is so important. Here are five easy tips on how to do it: 

 

1. Still embrace the sun. We are so lucky here in Joburg that the sun shines through winter and that simple sunlight on one’s back, in the cold, is such a warm (excuse the pun) embrace. Rising with the sun is not only wonderful for your mental health, but is a beautiful way to start the day. My girls and I see the sunrise each morning as we are getting ready for school. I love the conversations that it leads to, and the feeling of starting the day the natural way.

 

2. Eat seasonally. Gosh, what better way to respect the season than consume its natural produce. We’re talking more root vegetables and citrus fruits - all of which I love. There are so many resources out there that allow you to embrace seasonal eating in such an easy, efficient way. Have a look at Kind Crates and The Munching Mongoose - both of these are produce delivery services which have changed my life. 

 

3. This tip carries on from my previous one: change the way you cook.  In summer I am all for gorgeous fresh salads and raw eating but now that it’s cold outside it’s wonderful to embrace what your body is naturally looking for. Mine? Soups, strews and all things warm and hearty. I’ve also switched out my iced lattes for herbal teas - I love lavender at the moment but try a whole lot to find your match. 

 

4. Change the way you take time for yourself. You know that I am a huge advocate for self care and making time for the necessary act of caring for yourself. In winter I find myself doing different things, and indulging differently. For example, taking long hot baths, reading beautiful, slightly slower, thought provoking books (goodbye beach reads), and soft, slow meditations. 

 

5. I love candles all year round but as the seasons change I like to change the scents of my home. Some of my favourite right now? Orange Blossom by Babylonstoren, Secret Soy Candle in Boabab and Pomegranate available from Scout & Sunday and Jo Malone’s Pomegranate Noir. 

 

With the third wave of Covid looming these are ways that you can honour the winter while still being sensitive and cautious mid pandemic. And while I am all for getting up and getting out, and embracing your exercise and seeing friends etc, I also want you to really see the value of slowing down again during this season - pandemic or not. So remember the following:

 

It’s okay to be completely comfy for you work call: slippers, UGGS or even track pants on the bottom is a must at some point. 

 

You have my full permission to stay at home all weekend - order in and light a fire. 

 

Simplify your schedule and enjoy it! 

 

And finally, embrace the downtime. 

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