Weather Warnings

There are three different weather warnings in Ireland:

STATUS YELLOW — which is only a warning for people in specific areas, those who live or work close to the affected area (e.g. coastal)
STATUS ORANGE — advises to be prepared for certain weather conditions that are suppossed to affect all or selected areas of the country.
STATUS RED — tells to take action! Advice could be to stay indoors, to temporarily move to another place, to avoid driving if possible, etc.

Sunday evening we’ve had a status orange for most of the country. Temperatures were about to drop down to -2 to -8 C. It wasn’t that bad, here in the South East of Ireland; still, with the temperature not rising above the freezing point until about 10 am, the roads were quite slippery. Monday night the weather warning changed to a yellow with forecast of up to -4 C. Then, Tuesday there were no national weather warnings.

By now, our dogs, Rapsy and Missy, moved into „winter mode“ 🙂 Except for a short time outdoors and their run at the beach, they spend most of the time on the couch — cuddled up on the cozy fur blankets. 😉

Check out Met.ie where you can find out more about the Irish weather.

 

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Keep Warm – Part Two

Last week I was sharing some tips on how to keep our bodies warm during the winter season. This week’s post is about how to keep our homes warm.

The floor in our fireplace room used to have only tiles with a rug in the middle of it. We received a beautiful carpet a little over a week ago. So, now it’s carpeted. I didn’t expect it to make such a difference! It not only added a beautiful fresh look to the sitting room but it also keeps it about 2 degrees warmer than before.

Days during wintertime are not only colder but also shorter: the mornings are longer dark and it is getting dark early in the evening. I prefer a light-flooded home; you probably do to. Of course we don’t want to black out the rooms unnecessarily. However, especially during very cold days, drawing the curtain can help quite a bit. If we don’t want to spend a fortune on heating, we will have to choose: do we want more light or (more) warmth inside our homes. By the way, if you do get curtains, look for thermal or lined ones. They will be of good use during summertime, too.

Whenever the sun is shining, I leave the doors to the rooms that are on the south and west side wide open. That way there is not only more light but also cozy warmth coming into the rooms and the hallway.

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But when it is really cold outside, I draw the curtains or even leave some of them shut all day. Like this one…

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… at the front door, or like the ones in our living room and offices.

Whenever the sun shines brightly, the temperatures in our sitting and living room can easily rise to 20°C, even up to 22-23°C. In the afternoon this will change and so I draw the curtains again, to keep the warmth inside our home and to avoid unnecessary heating costs.

During winter I prefer cozy heated rooms over daylight. Yes, at times this means that not much daylight is flooding into our home until late in the morning or after early in the evening. That’s why we have bought some daylight bulbs. They will make the rooms a lot brighter than the common ones:

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The picture doesn’t show how well they do that. But if you look at the lamp you will see that the light ray is white and not yellowish. The bulbs aren’t that cheap but they are well worth getting for winter.

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Keep Warm – Part One

What a beautiful day it was last Tuesday! We enjoyed wonderful sunshine in County Wexford, Ireland. The walk in the morning felt great — a view overlooking the Irish Sea, just a tiny blanket of clouds on the horizon and nothing but blue skies above… Rays of sunshine from behind the clouds promised a gorgeous sunrise. All in all, a great walk in a picture perfect setting. But… it was bitterly cold.

Yes, you are right, it is winter in Ireland, too. By the way, according to the „Irish calendar“ this season begins on the 1st of November and lasts until end of January. It is usually cold during wintertime so we will have to keep ourselves and our homes warm.

Keeping Warm

Warm up from the inside out: avoid cold foods and drinks. A cuppa hot chocolate, tea or coffee will help our bodies to get warm. Instead of salad, eat some cooked, warm veggies and, for in between, eat hot soups.

If you don‘t have a slow cooker yet, I would suggest that you‘ll buy one. I love to cook with it; during winter because it keeps the steam to a minimum and during summer because it doesn‘t heat up the kitchen so easily. You can use it to cook the soup/s and to keep them warm all day.

To keep your body warm when going outdoors, wear several layers of clothing and don’t forget the gloves and hat.

Get some extra blankets/throws for at home. I like the fluffy (fleecy) kind. During winter we use them on top of our mattress and sofas and as blankets. Our dogs got their own ones, too — they prefer to lie on them instead of on the cold floors. 😉

Hot water bottles: they are great for the cold season! When the evenings and nights are cold and the heater is already turned off, fill them up with hot water and place them in your bed under the duvet or snuggle up in a blanket that‘s warmed up by a hot water bottle.

That’s it for keeping yourself warm. I‘ll talk about the home next time.

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