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7 Tips for Slower Living This Winter

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It’s easy for cabin fever and seasonal mood swings to take their toll during winter, but 2020 added a whole new level of stressors to the mix. With this in mind, we’ve compiled seven of our favorite slow-living tips for staying balanced and mindful during winter. 

Many of these ideas center around the kitchen, which is no surprise! We’re foodies at heart, and the kitchen is where we find warmth, love, and joy.

1) Soak Your Beans!

Cooking your beans is a simple (and super affordable) way to start making more of your meals from scratch. The act of pouring water over the dried beans and sifting your hands through the colorful seeds is meditative in and of itself. Plus, by learning how to soak beans and cook them from scratch, you will develop a deeper relationship with your food than anything from a can could provide. Try your soaked beans in delicious recipes like our Black Bean Chipotle Salsa or Pinto Bean Veggie Burgers

 
2) Bring Children into the Kitchen
If you're feeling cooped up this winter, you can bet that the children in your  life are, too. Why not invite them into the kitchen to try a new recipe? To be more mindful, turn off all background noises, like TVs, and only make one recipe at a time (no multitasking!). This recipe for No-Bake Energy Bites is a great one to make with kids. It’s healthy, simple, and they’ll have a blast rolling the dough into little balls. 

3) Savor Something New

Nothing encourages you to slow down and savor the moment like a new experience. In winter, this could involve trying a new board game, exploring a new form of exercise, or introducing new foods to your diet. Einkorn is an undiscovered staple for many people, and our certified organic einkorn berries are available at Whole Foods Market and co-op groceries around the US. This ancient grain is tastier, more nutritious, and easier to digest than modern forms of wheat. Its chewy texture and nutty flavor shine in breakfast bowls, risotto, and even salads

4) Make Each Meal an Experience

Being in the moment is a cornerstone of intentional living. However, it’s all too easy to fall into the habit of eating distracted meals in front of the TV. If you need help shifting your dining habits back to the table, then consider decorating it with seasonal elements, like evergreen boughs, and lighting a few candles. Put some relaxing music on and make each meal an experience. Not sure what to serve? This Black Lentil Chili is a hit every time! 

5) Reclaim Your Mornings

Mornings are the most hectic part of many peoples’ days, so we’re always looking for ways to streamline it. We recently discovered Overnight Oats, and we can’t get over how much easier it is to wake up and have breakfast ready to go! To make overnight oats, soak rolled oats overnight in the milk of your choice, and they’ll be soft and ready to eat in the morning. Take them to the next level by stirring in vanilla, honey, cinnamon, chopped nuts, or berries. 

6) Cook a Meal Outside

Even when the weather is cold, you can still bundle up and spend time outdoors. Make an event out of it by making a fire and cooking a meal outdoors. We offer beans and chickpeas through Patagonia Provisions with this very thing in mind, and cooking outdoors is a great way to slow down and connect with the season.

7) Thank Your Farmer

How often do you sit and think about the supply chain that brings food from the farm to your table? It’s pretty mind-blowing to learn just how much work it takes, and it all starts with the farmer. Do some research about the farmers that grow your food (you can start here with our farmer directory). If you feel inclined, send a farmer a thank you note to let them know how grateful you are for the hard work they put into supplying your family with healthy, organic staples.

Mindful Winter Moments

Life in the slow lane doesn’t always come naturally, but, in our experience, it’s worth taking the time to slow down and identify more opportunities for mindfulness. Cooking meals from scratch, spending time with family, and cooking outdoors are just a few ideas to get you started.

If you’re interested in making the recipes shared throughout this post, then you can purchase your pantry staples via any of our partners in ethical sourcing, including Patagonia Provisions and Hive Brands.