Survive a Snow Storm or Everyone Who Lives In New England Can Skip This Post

Readers I have been remiss. What can I say for myself other than “I was busy getting my holiday swerve on”? How about I promise to never use the word “swerve” in a manner that does not pertain to turning my car again…deal?

Now that all is forgiven, holy lord did it snow something fierce in the Northeast for the last couple of days.

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My life 24 hours ago

SO because I have heard that one of those Almanacs out there says it’s supposed to be a hard winter (along with nostra-whats-his-face’s predictions and my uncle who is a farmer) and because a childhood in New England coupled with four years in a mountain college in New Hampshire makes me dually qualified on the subject, I submit to you this guide for surviving a snow storm. (The word “surviving” here having the meaning “avoid death by boredom while stuck in your house for 24+ hours”)

1. Plug Stuff In
It will be windy, there will be heavy snow on power lines, maybe you lose power maybe you don’t, but if you don’t plug things in (your laptop, tablet, phone anything you need to be charged) you will be damn sorry when you have nothing to do but stare at a blank TV screen by candle light.

2. Prepare (sort of)
Look I’ve been through enough storms to know that they generally do not live up to the hype. I’m not saying you need to stock up your house like you’re auditioning to be on Doomsday Preppers, I’m just saying it will be no fun hungry times when you open the cabinet and realize you are low on pop tarts. It will be even less fun sober time when you realize you do not have wine, a mimosa-less snow day is what snowpocalypse really means. Make sure you have some basics (food, candles, matches, booze) because you won’t be leaving your house for a while.

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Pictured above: accurate forecasting

3. Deal With The Snow Now
There is a real temptation to huddle under a blanket and binge watch the Law and Order marathon and tell yourself it doesn’t make sense to do any shoveling before the snow stops. DON”T WAIT. If you wait you will be dealing with a heavy, wet, frozen nightmare monster of a situation. I get it, that wind chill is a real bitch and that SVU rabbit hole has enough pull to attract it’s own moon (that’s a gravity joke, boom!). But take an hour and go uncover your car, your future self will thank you in the morning while they laugh at everyone else dealing with three inches of compacted ice on their windshield.
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Yay responsibilities!

4. Have The Best Neighbors
My neighbors made me vanilla french toast when I showed up cold and damp at 11 a.m. because I had no coffee (I hadn’t prepared, see what happens kids?!). Listen, I hate people also but it behooves you to get to know your neighbors a little bit because when you are snowed in and ill-prepared they are quite literally all you have. Especially if they have a generator capable of powering a fridge and a flat screen. Make sure you keep these people on your obligatory friendly pleasantries rotation.

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My neighbors are better than your neighbors

Stay warm dear readers and have a wintry cocktail for me!

-Audrey

9 Stores in 5 Hours OR How To Not Die While Christmas Shopping

Happy Holidays my merry readers.

I apologize if the title of this post excludes anyone but I celebrate Christmas and am therefore wildly unqualified to offer advice or insight into shopping for other winter time holidays (Hanukkah, Yule, Festivus, whatever you’re into). But here are some tips to help you maximize your Christmas shopping (which is to say get back to your couch to binge watch “The Witches of East End” sooner).

1. Plan Ahead!
This step is two-fold (I don’t f*** around when it comes to shopping). The first fold-do some research. Think about what you want to get for the people you are buying for and check out different stores online, most stores even have a handy link next to items that will tell you if it is in stock near you. This allows you to make a hit list of locations (and to find out store hours) and if you want to get really in depth map out your route. The second fold-make a list! I am not kidding make a list, I don’t care if it is a list of names, shops, specific items, reindeer, all the characters in the old timey Rudolph movie, just make a list (and then check it twice … a minute because you are paranoid you will forget something/one).

2. Set Aside Time
This seems like a no brainer but can be more difficult than it would first appear. There are a lot of holiday happenings going on and your friends will try to entice you away with cocktail hours and watching the Patriots losing to the goddamned Dolphins. DO NOT BE SWAYED! Designate a full day to get everything possible on your list, trust me you do not want to have to make five different trips for Christmas gifts, it is the WORST.

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fifteen yards between us and victory…I can’t even

3. Attack, ATTACK!!
Show no mercy. There are things your loved ones need that you have to buy, I don’t care if you have to body check an eleven year old to get to that last Barbie Goes Clubbing Special Edition Doll just get it. You have put in the time and effort, you did research for God’s sake, get what you need and get out.

4. Drink Heavily
Did I mention add wine to your list? Because add wine to your list. After five hours, nine stores, and hauling all your crap a mile across a shopping center parking lot in the wrong shoes you will need it. While I usually advocate pre-gaming you should keep all drinking to a post-shopping event, you need your wits about you out there, middle-aged moms shopping for their children are nothing to mess around with.

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This is what five hours of shopping looks like at the end of the day, a lot less impressive when it is all unpacked but much of my gift giving requires assembly (stay tuned for a fun tutorial to make fancy presents).

If you forgot the wine check out this recipe for a delicious Hot Toddy.

Good luck out there readers, have a post-shopping cocktail for me and try not to get run over by a minivan nabbing a primo parking space.

-Audrey

P.S. Definitely don’t body check anyone “tis the season for civil court” you know?