If you had to have super-hot weather or super cold weather, which would you choose? I go for the cold. My theory (along with probably thousands of others!) is that you can always add layers in the cold but in the hot, eventually, you can’t take anymore off. Thankfully, I don’t have to choose one of the other and I get to have both the hot and the cold. And I’m even more thankful I get mostly warm….
I’d say that I can (usually) handle whatever kind of cold comes our way if I have enough of the right kind of layers. It probably isn’t gear for Antarctic kind of cold, but since I’m not going there any time soon (or ever), I think I’m set. I’m that kind of girl that so long as I’m not freezing, I can do whatever needs to be done. So we pull out our cold weather gear and get to work.
So without any further interruptions, distractions, or whatever else, here is, from one rancher’s wife to another (or anyone else that is interested to know), my top 5 things that helped us survive the cold of winter.
1. Our Muck Boots… These boots are a serious staple at our house, year round. But they are an absolute necessity during the winter. Let me give you the highlights of this boot: water tight, insulated, great tread, and NO LACES! I love these boots for myself but I really love these for the kids because they can put them on and tucked into their snow pants without momma’s help. And they are great for those long weeks when the snow is melting and we are sloshing through the mud.
2. A good wool hat WITH ear flaps… When I was a kid, I always laughed about the look of a wool cap. All I ever saw was Elmer Fudd. But with my cute Stormy Kromer hat, function has totally met fashion. And although looking good out on the ranch for those cows that are really into that is top priority, more importantly, I now have an awesome hat for a super warm noggin to make it through the cold winter days! The Rancher isn’t so concerned about looking good as he heads out (because looking good comes so naturally to him) but he totally agrees with me that a wool cap is the way to make it through the winter. His only stipulation is that it has to have some good long flaps to pull down over his ears.
3. Our Carhartt… everything! We wear so much Carhartt because it is good stuff. We have coats, jackets, and even wool socks! They definitely win first place. A blue ribbon. A gold star. But seriously, they do an amazing job for keeping the cold at bay. Then they last all season long, and the next and the next! I have been wearing some of my favorite winter weather pieces for years! (Not that I have had the same pair of socks on for years, just that I have been using them for years. You know what I mean, right?) I’m all about a product that can do its job well, not once, but for a good, long haul.
4. Good ol’ long johns… The old time cowboys had it right when they wore their long underwear all winter long. They are like a snugly winter coat. It’s that all our critters need, so it sounds like a good plan to me! I don’t have a favorite brand. I’m simple like that. They just need to fit in my jeans and keep me moving!
5. Insulated leather gloves… Every year we pull out the insulated leather gloves I am always amazed at how well they can keep ya warm. When winter hits I’m ready to put on the heavy-duty, snowman building, all-day-sledding, hill-climbing-snowmobiling, sort of gloves. Then The Rancher grabs his trusty insulated leather gloves and I know we are already good to go. Now if only they make them for teeny tiny hands…
There are lots of other winter favorites like our wild rags, vests, snow pants and many more cluttering my mudroom. But when it really comes down to it, this handful was our everyday-go-to winter gear and so long as we had them, we were good to go. What helped you make it through the winter? Anything that isn’t found in the mud room?