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Winter Fun Alfresco

Winter Fun Alfresco

It’s the heart of winter! Are you thinking right about now that winter has no heart? Not everyone loves the cool, crisp air and fresh snow. After being plummeted by snow for more than a month here in the Northeast, most of us find ways to cocoon at home – or just succumb to being a cabin fever couch potato. But, there’s an unapologetic hearty breed of folks who endure the tundra-like temps and embrace the elements of winter – alfresco-style.

A recent New York Times article elaborates:

“Even in this winter of record-challenging cold, there are those who refuse to cower before the elements and retreat indoors. They never shroud the grill or store the patio furniture. They are exhilarated to relax on the deck in the chill. And they find a special beauty as they gaze at the slate-gray sky on a winter morning.

Last year, I highlighted some of the reasons people choose to live a cold existence. From a person who listens to a lot of music and says the acoustics are better in the cold, to people with dire economic reasons, these people find their chilly choice a viable living option.

While I wouldn’t go as far as to keep the inside of my house frigid cold, we enjoy all the seasons at my nest in the woods by braving the elements. That includes embracing the heart of the winter by welcoming the elements of fire and ice…outdoors.


1. Build a winter playhouse for the kids. Inspired by the Norwegian turf huts and old log construction, this recycled playhouse was built and mounted on a lighted and brushed concrete base. The project allows children to be outdoors in even the coldest of climates.

2. At my home we enjoy outdoor brisk winter evenings gazing at the stars from our wood-fired hot tub. Our tub from Sea Otter Designs has made many cold snowy days bearable.

3. Throw a winter party and cook outdoors. Tell your guests to dress for the weather and try this tip for dining outdoors in winter: The main dish and beverages should be hot and served buffet style. Here’s a roundup of outdoor cooking recipes from the Daily Green to beat the winter blahs.


1. Build an Igloo. Traditionally, igloos are built out of snow and covered with a layer of ice to form a natural barrier against sub-zero temperatures and wind chills. The force of the compressed snow provides exceptional structural stability, while the semicircular form maximizes interior space. Here are instructions to build your own igloo from Buildables.

2. Build a backyard ice rink. This takes some pre-frozen ground planning, but you can read all about my experiences with backyard ice rinks here.

3. For the fun of it, hang your laundry out and create snow graffiti and welcome a winter party.

No snow? Dream of a snowy white morning and watch the snow fall.

Read more: Children, EcoNesting DIY, Green Home Decor, Home, Natural Pest Control, Outdoor Activities, , , , , , , , , , ,

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Ronnie Citron-Fink

Ronnie Citron-Fink is a writer, editor and educator. She has written hundreds of articles about sustainable living, the environment, design, and family life for websites, books and magazines. Ronnie is the creator of Econesting, and the managing editor of Moms Clean Air Force. Ronnie was named one of the Top Ten Living Green Experts by Yahoo. Ronnie lives in New York with her family.


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11:14AM PST on Dec 29, 2011


10:52PM PDT on Aug 24, 2011

hi everyone, please sign this petition and help

11:49AM PDT on Mar 23, 2011


3:45PM PST on Mar 11, 2011

Great ideas

9:09AM PST on Mar 11, 2011

I love spending some time outdoors in the winter, the weather smells so crisp and clear.

11:03PM PST on Feb 23, 2011

Where I am from, Buenos Aires, we dont have snow!!! Just few times in the century it had happened!! I envy who can watch the snow thru the window close to the fire!!

2:41PM PST on Feb 20, 2011

Neat looking igloo

8:09AM PST on Feb 16, 2011

forgive me -- I have so little time, so I am just here briefly for points to put towards the animals ...

10:58AM PST on Feb 13, 2011

That fire in the playhouse doesn't look too safe!

4:20PM PST on Feb 10, 2011

X-Country skiing from Inn to Inn for a nice cup of Cocoa

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking


Bob P. Bob P.
on The Penis Project
1 minute ago

Good advice, thanks.

I wonder how wrinkly their cheeks are under their fur.


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