This year, the expression “winter is coming” has new and distressing connotations. After a year of turning our lives upside down and our roots firmly planted with us, it can be intimidating to think of another important time inside.
But it doesn’t have to be. With a little forethought, you can turn your home into a home, making it a haven for the chilly weather to come – a place you want to be. Here’s how.
Build your cleaning arsenal.
As we enter cold and flu season – in a year where viruses are already a major concern – there is nothing more important than stockpiling all the tools you will need to keep your home safe. cleaner and safer in the cold season.
It’s a common misconception that all cleaning products disinfect, says Carolyn Forte, director of the Appliances and Cleaning Products Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute. And cleaning, disinfection and disinfection are not the same. Cleaning removes any visible mess from a surface by washing and rinsing, usually with soap and water, but it does not automatically disinfect. Disinfection is a better step, because it kills some pathogenic bacteria. Disinfection is what you really want, as it kills most pathogenic bacteria and viruses.
When shopping, look for products, like Weiman Granit & Stone Clean & Shine Disinfectant, with labels specifically stating that they disinfect. If you’re not sure, look for the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registration number on the product label, Forte says. Then type that number into the agency database for details on the type of bacteria and viruses it may be effective against.
Do a “fall repair”.
While spring cleaning gets all the attention, fall is a great time to do a quick pass – a “fall fix,” if you will. First, tap any spaces where clutter tends to accumulate – your closets, the family command center, or your home office. Make two piles: one to throw; one to give.
Once you’ve done that, make the space shine. Use your new and improved product offering to disinfect all heavily touched surfaces, such as counters, doorknobs, appliance handles and even remote controls. The cleaning wipes get this task done quickly.
Now is a good time to spiff up items that also tend to collect a lot of dust. Use a pillowcase to remove encrusted dust from ceiling fans, pull out your long-handled feather duster to scrub pendant lights and sconces, and use your vacuum’s special accessories to give the upholstery a unique touch.
Stock up on kitchen supplies.
While you’re in purge mode, take a look inside your pantry. Throw away expired products and give away anything that is still good, but has remained intact for months. Then take stock and write a shopping list. Make sure you have everything you will need for a versatile kitchen – think olive oil, salt and pepper, beans, and grains like rice and pasta.
And while you’re at it, consider adding a slow cooker or multicooker to your kitchenware arsenal – these little gadgets are relatively inexpensive, but can make winter comfort foods quick and easy.
Take advantage of a color scheme suitable for fall.
Find ways to incorporate rich, autumnal hues into your space – think oranges, greens and browns, says Monique Valeris, senior writer at Good Housekeeping. And, no, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend a ton of money on new decor pieces.
There are many easy ways to breathe new life into your space on a budget. Set up comfy couches and chairs with extra blankets and cushions, or try swapping art prints that have a beach vibe for something more appropriate for the season, suggests Valeris.
You can also bring natural autumnal elements inside. For example, put pine cones in a pretty wooden bowl and display it on your coffee table. A potted plant is also a great way to do this. And, as an added bonus, studies suggest that plants not only helps to purify the air, but they also boost general happiness.
Change your bedding.
Another easy change of decor that can pay off big in aesthetics and comfort: new bedding. Swap fresh cotton sheets for something softer and warmer, like flannel. Alternatively, you can just put this light summer quilt away and fill a comforter with a cute, fluffy down comforter. For texture, be sure to layer comfortable pillows and throws in fabrics like fleece or even cashmere.
Put something comfortable under your feet.
While hard surfaces are all the rage in contemporary flooring, there is nothing more relaxing than stepping out of a cozy, warm bed on an icy floor. Place a plush rug under your bed or opt for runners on either side. You can also consider the concept of layering, says Valeris. For example, layering a sisal rug with a patterned pattern can have a big impact on the design.
You’ll also need something in your main space, especially near the entrance, as no one wants wet, muddy footprints all over the house. Add a decorative rug here or try a washable rug.
Consider alternative lighting.
When the days are so short and darkness sets in at an unusually early hour, you will need sufficient lighting. But remove the heavy overhead costs. If you have recessed lighting, replace bright bulbs with smart LEDs – you can use your smartphone or set up voice control through a smart home hub to dim them, set timers, and even change the color of the light. Also consider replacing the bright white lights of the lamps with softer, warm-toned lights.
Candles are another way to cast a warm, warm glow in your home once the sun goes down. They come in so many fall scents like pumpkin and patchouli, besides setting the mood and are great for entertaining, says Valeris.
Elevate your outdoor space.
When you’re home for months, even a little chill in the air can’t stop you from a quick change of scenery on your way outside – especially if your garden, balcony or patio is equipped with air conditioning. ‘a type of heat source. to reduce the cold. If you have the room and local ordinances or building codes allow it, invest in an outdoor fireplace, says Valeris.
Sitting around the fire is surprisingly relaxing and rejuvenating, and gives off enough heat to make a night’s sleep much more comfortable. If you are not allowed to have a fireplace, an electric patio heater can do the trick.
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