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Shoo away winter blues!

It is January, which means that the holidays are over and done with, while winter continues.  Winter is a month that may be fun in other states because of the variety of winter sports involving snow and ice.  This is probably even the case in northern Texas; but here in Houston, the season does not have much going for it.  There is no snow to ski or sled on, nor school closings because of snow or ice (as a general rule.)  Winter, for Houstonians, consists of a few dreary, gray, and COLD months that zap energy and make people spend far too much time being bored inside. 

While the holidays are a great antidote for cabin fever, when they are over there comes a tangible panic, with people looking for something to do for the next month and a half until the next (widely celebrated) holiday comes around.  Valentine's Day is generally looked upon as at least an interesting, if not exciting, holiday by most people, and it at least gives most individuals something to think about (or even celebrate) in mid-February.  However, there are a lot of weeks between now and the 14th!

Romance and dating in general is something that often slacks off during the winter months because of sluggish attitudes in part due to the unhappy weather.  Having to stay inside because of cold and miserable weather is something that Houstonians are far less used to than residents may be in other states, and as a result, suffer arguably more with cases of the winter blues.

The secret to surviving winter in your dating life is to make sure to find fun things to do inside.  There are a variety of dates that can be adapted to do inside, or else you can plan something specifically for staying in.  For instance, a picnic can be done in the living room instead of outside. Sure it may not be the same, but it can still be a fun experience.  If you have a fireplace, roasting marshmallows or just sitting in front of it with a cup of hot cocoa or a glass of wine can be enjoyable.  Also, never underestimate the enjoyment of cuddling, that is something that can be done in a variety of scenarios or as a fun addition to any type of date!  Cuddling together in blankets beside a crackling fire, drinking a nice glass of red wine... that's a pretty great scenario for most people. 

Be certain that you spend time with your significant other during this time if you have one.  Studies have shown that relationships are more difficult in the winter for a variety of reasons, so make sure that enough work is done on your relationship during this season.  If you are not in a relationship, you may choose to take a dating 'hibernation' until spring comes around the corner.  Winter can be a great time to hole up and get things accomplished!  Paperwork is always a favorite, as well as pre-spring cleaning and organizing.  Not only will you be happy that spring is near, but your home will be clean and ready for a busy spring and summer as well!

If you do choose to delve into dating with ever-optimistic fervor during the winter months, make sure that you are coming up with fun, fresh ideas.  There are a lot of options including the more generic movies and dinners, but there are always out-of-the box things as well.  Winter is an especially good time to try new things, for all of the aforementioned reasons.  For instance, choosing to organize a game night with some friends is always entertaining.  You can come up with themed twists, such as 'Spanish' night where you  and your circle eat fajitas, drink margaritas, listen to flamenco music, and play canasta.  Obviously there are many other varieties, and since it's your party, base your activities on the theme as loosely as you like!  As a few additional ideas,  go bowling, read a new type of book, learn how to knit, or take a poetry writing workshop with a date.  Doing something new and exciting will make you unforgettable and label you as the person who always has a good time (even in the winter)!

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