I live in Washington, and the rumors are true. This really is a rainy place! From October to May (on a good year) we see more clouds than sun and more rain boots than sneakers than anywhere I’ve ever lived before, and it gets to me. In a big, big way. For four winters running, I have spent the better part of the season grouching and complaining about the rain, the lack of sun, and the general crappiness of the weather. For four years running, I have huddled inside my home and refused to get out unless necessary. For four years running, I have let the rain win. But not anymore.
This may be our last winter in Washington, and I am determined not to let the weather get me down so I’m doing what I do best. I’m making a plan!
I started by making a list of what bothers me about the rain. At first this seemed simple. It sucks. It sucks. It sucks. It’s true, but I really needed to get to the root of it, and this is what I came up with.
- I miss the sunshine; I get moody when it’s cloudy and dark.
- I hate wet shoes tracking wet muck into my house.
- I hate feeling like I’m stuck in my house because of the weather because …
- I hate getting wet climbing in/out of the car and puddle jumping across parking lots EVERYWHERE I GO.
Of course, as much as I tried, the next few numbers always came out “It sucks. It sucks. It sucks,” but I think these first few sum up the reality of the situation. I hate the darkness and the wetness, but now I have a plan.
Step 1: Create a sunny place. I need a “sunny” spot, a brightly lit place I can retreat to when the clouds are getting me down, a spot to read or facebook or just sit with a snack and soak up the light. I’ve decided Alli’s TV area (formerly known as the dining room) is the best spot. It has a comfy couch and is already pretty well lit (by a terribly ugly 1980’s chandelier), but I’m also ordering this sad lamp.
Many of my friends swear by SAD lamps, and though I’ve scoffed at them in years past, this year I’m giving it a try. I also have a download of nothing but ocean sounds that I really enjoy, and a few beachy books downloaded on my Kindle. Just picturing me sitting by my SAD lamp, listening to the lovely ocean waves, and devouring a few summer romances makes me giggle, but if it helps me win this season, I’m okay with it.
Step Two: Stay as dry as possible. As stupid as it sounds, since living in Washington I’ve never bought a raincoat for myself. Totally stupid, right? I don’t like wearing jackets much anyways, and buying a raincoat has always seemed like a concession to me. However in order to stay dry this year I’m already on the hunt for the best rain gear I can afford for everyone in my family. The kids have had various jackets with varying degrees of rain protection, but this year I am on a mission. I want to stay dry. My oldest swears by her North Face jacket, but spending that amount times five again makes me want to cry. I’m on the lookout for sales and deals, folks, so if you are local and have info for me, let me know! I’m also contemplating rain boots. I’m not much of a boot wearer, but I think I hate wet feet more than boots so I’ll probably give it a shot.
I’ve also ordered new indoor rugs to go by the front and back doors. If the people living in my house don’t learn to take their shoes off before they track in on my carpet, there may be a few less North Face jackets to buy …
Step Three: Find dry activities. I hate getting stuck inside (even with the promise of my sunny spot), and I hate going places and getting wet walking to and from. My plan for this is to find activities where I won’t possible get wet. So far my list is short … There’s a local grocery store and a museum in Seattle we all love that both have covered parking. There is a pool on base that we all really like, and even though it doesn’t have covered parking, well … it’s a pool. We’d be getting wet anyways, right? That’s about all I’ve got so far, but I’m on the hunt. I know I also need to invest in a GREAT umbrella since not all activities will come with perfect covered parking. Once again, I’m open to suggestions for either.
Step Four: Change My Attitude. This will be the toughest of all. I know that in order to win this season, I also have to embrace it. I need to learn to at least like the rain, acknowledge all the good things about it, and accept all the negatives in a “This is just how it is; suck it up and move on, Jodi!” kind of way. I have never let anything EVER beat me like I’ve allowed this rainy season to do, and I won’t let it win one more season.
I guess the point of this post is that I’m tired of losing this weather game, and I’m tired of losing almost nine months of the year as concession. I’m tired of being stuck inside, and I’m tired of being unhappy inside and out, and for me the first step is acknowledging the problem and creating a plan.
Do you have any tips for me? Raingear or sunny spot suggestions? Or just ideas of won’t-get-wet activities? How do you make the rain a less miserable season to live in?