Welcome to 2018. It’s been a cold start to the year, with the temperature at a mere 18 degrees as I write this. That’s warm compared with the 1 degree it was Tuesday morning.

This cold weather has me putting on my January face.

My face is frozen from the cold. My lips are chapped, my hair is static-filled and in a ponytail. I’m living each day with glasses on my face.

That’s my January face.

The phrase comes from my friend, Jennifer P. Brown, with whom I worked at the New Era. She often talked about how dreary and “vanilla” January can be.

In 2014, at the New Era she had asked folks in the newsroom what to do to “cheer up this condition of winter blah.” We didn’t have any happy answers and she joked that we wore our January faces.

I haven’t forgot that phrase and each January, I’m reminded how true it is.

Jennifer had suggested some things to do to get through January. They were: (1) Chase the sun, (2) Get civic, (3) Explore what’s local.

This immediate arctic cold weather makes it difficult to get the courage and motivation to get out and do things. But people are back to work. School starts today. We must try to overcome the January face.

I like to look at ways to keep warm.

I always thought drinking alcohol might warm someone up, but according to LiveScience, a science-based news source, said drinking booze lowers your body temperature. Not a good thing if you want to be warm!

Mental Floss suggests layering up your clothing as “it’s easier to change your body temperature than room temperature.” Other tips were wear a hat (even indoors) and turn on a ceiling fan to help push down that warm air up there. You can also bake or layer your blankets on your bed with the thinnest, densest ones on top.