De-cluttering. If you are stuck inside for long periods of time, the level of order in your house can really affect your attitude. Throw out old newspapers, clean off the mail, etc. that gathers on the table, walk through the house and simply put things back where they go. It sounds like such a small thing, but it can really make a big difference!
Candles, candles, candles. Have kids? Put them up high! Nothing is more flattering and soothing than the soft flickering of candlelight. Even if it is just a row of cheap votives on the mantel, candles really impart a sense of warmth and luxury.
Pleasing aromas. Make the candles scented, do some baking, or put on a pot of soup to create pleasant smells in your home. Coming in from the cold to the trinity of warmth, light, and the smell of something appetizing can make one grateful to be alive!
Warm beverages. Indulge in hot cocoa, or something stronger.
Heavy beers. If you have read my blog for very long, you know that I am a huge fan of heavy beers (okay, maybe all beers...). Winter is the perfect time to enjoy the richer styles of beer such as barley wines, porters, stouts, and strong ales.
Music. I find that I listen to mood music much more frequently when the weather is cold, maybe because my mood needs more assistance. Personal preference rules here, but if Yellow makes you teary on the best of days, I would avoid it (I don't know anything about this, as I personally am a stalwart wall of un-sentimentality. Right.).
Meditation. Nothing can make your home seem cozier and welcoming than a little inner peace. I know that not all of you readers are Catholic, feel free to skip this suggestion if you don't want it. For everyone else... I recently stumbled upon a recording of the Rosary by the Daughters of St. Paul. I have a really hard time saying the Rosary, but I absolutely love this version. If you are feeling anxious, worried, stressed, or fearful, try saying the Sorrowful mysteries. The meditations are both beautiful and consoling. I also recently downloaded this app, which seems to be basically the same as the cd version.
What do you do to create a little cozy and beat the winter blues? I would love to hear your suggestions!