We’re promised snow (well, the sort of snow you mostly get here – light, doesn’t last, just makes things slippery and causes trouble) Thursday-Saturday. My plan beyond the fact that I have a myofascial release session booked for Thursday AM is to stay inside except for dog walks.

Also, as I write this, Monday-Wednesday AM I’ll be tethered to a blood pressure monitor for 48 hours. This was meant to be done a long ways ago, but Covid intervened. I’ve been told I can’t get the thing wet. So, big, long, hot shower Monday morning and then nothing (possibly careful spot cleaning) till Wednesday afternoon. I know you wanted to know that.

Oh, and I gave notice on the client I detest. So, that finishes the last week of December and a good friend visits the next day (celebration to be had).

I was thinking about doing a five or three fave perfumes you’d (I’ve noticed the D key on my PC laptop sticks – need to get out the compressed air can) keep if you had to ditch everything else but decided that was too depressing – and probably too hard for most people.

I don’t have a lot right now. This isn’t my fave time of year. I’m trying to be in the moment. Sometimes it works, sometimes not so well.

Anyway, hibernation. The rabbits, deer and foxes are gone. I imagine they are all snuggled up together (not all of them together, just each grouping together) and won’t crack an eyelid for another 2.5 months. I wonder if that first morning it’s warm enough to emerge they all rush for the local creek … for all kinds of reasons.

I can’t imagine hibernating that way. Too confining (and no chocolate).

But I can manage the closing in … sort of. By late December, it’s light from a bit after 8 AM till 4 PM. That’s it. I walk the dog late morning and make a lot of soup. Make a fire in the wood stove every day from around mid-afternoon in an attempt not to have the heat on all the time.

I’ve checked all my autumn/winter candles and decided I certainly don’t need another one this year even though there’s this very nice looking limited edition Diptyque biscuit one.

I’ve started thinking about what to get a friend for her birthday in January. She’s hard to buy for given she’s got most of what she wants (we don’t discuss need). Maybe some fancy candle while it’s in my head.

Anyway, it’s grey, damp and cold out. You get the smell of wood smoke in the village, but that’s really it on fragrance for the time being. I’m still in the Lutens Arabie/Masque Milano Madeleine layered phase.

So, what do you do to hibernate? Do you live somewhere that’s not necessary? Which perfumes are in the rotation right now?

  • rosarita says:

    During the energy crisis in the 70s, my father put a wood burner in the fireplace. I wasn’t a fan of wood chopping but I love that smell. I’m more than halfway through the “no weight bearing” time period for my foot and I’m not depressed but frustration is setting in at not being able to get around and having to stay in the same position for hours. Perfume is helping a lot, so is listening to music. Lots of cozy sweaters and blankets and mint tea.

  • Neva says:

    Hibernation in progress here as well. I’m looking forward to long walks in nature because I just cannot stay indoors. I’ve bought special shoes for the cold and humid weather. I burn scented candles like crazy. At the moment it’s one that makes crackling noises while burning. I’ve prepared lots of books for reading in the cold season and I enjoy my cozy perfumes: Dzing!, Bottega Veneta Eau de Velours, the vintage Jil Sander III, Ormonde Jayne Damask…

    • cinnamon says:

      I do love walking round the villages this time of year (we don’t go to the common any more as the dog scavenges too much and bad things happen when he gets home). I’ve got a pile of around 10 books which has removed some of the anxiety about the dark and cold. Was looking at an Ormonde Jayne sample box this morning as I’m wanting to try Champaca again (even though it feels a bit like the wrong time of year …).

  • Musette says:

    Hey, sweetie!

    This is my least favorite time of year – it’s an unseasonable 21F already!!! and we’re in that pre-holiday slump. I spend a lot of time on the mat, working out (keeping the endorphins going so I don’t chop everyone into little bits), I clean a lot. A lot. It’s a control thing 😉 Work out some more. Drink hot tea and eat ginger thins.
    Oh, and work – regular work. No trust fund anymore, so I gotta work. That keeps me sane. Mostly.


    • cinnamon says:

      We generally don’t get that cold except for short patches. And then no one emerges out much unless they absolutely have to. You get those types of temps in northern England and Scotland. Ginger things … I need to get ginger biscuits and maybe even crystallised ginger. The acupuncturist said I need to be eating more ginger and cinnamon.

  • Dina C. says:

    I’ve been wearing woodsy scents, vintage scents with oakmoss, a couple vanilla (I only have a couple since that’s not usually my thing), and deep forest-y things like Silences and Fille en Aiguilles. I’ve been reading books on Kindle while snuggled up in a blanket. I could totally hibernate if books and hot tea were part of the package.

    • cinnamon says:

      Vanilla is always right this time of year. And I need to find a decant of FeA. Every time someone mentions it I’m reminded. I can imagine the rabbits drinking hot chocolate and reading to each other in their burrows before it gets so cold they just want to sleep.

  • AnnieA says:

    It’s also Amber time over here. Although all I really need is Ambre des Merveilles I recently bought a small bottle of Ortigia Siciliana. Ambra I presume. A new decor store bravrly opened up nearby and I wanted to support them.

    Instead of an Only Five list, how about Top Five for helping to keep us calm and sane in the past horrible while? Those I could come up with toute suite.

    • cinnamon says:

      That’s an idea for a top 5. I’d have a number of candles on it though. My Tauer l’Air candle is a sublime amber/incense thing.

  • Alityke says:

    I used to get Seasonal Affective Disorder when I worked in internal offices & clinics in huge hospitals. Set off in the dark, came home in the dark & little, if any, natural light during my working days. A SAD lamp & winter beach holidays were must haves to keep me from descending into deep depression.
    Now I’m retired & the pandemic raged, holidays have been a nono. I try to get natural light outside every day, take Vit D & don’t use the SAD lamp anymore. I do sleep more in winter though?
    The hibernation instinct is obviously still near the surface in some of us

    • cinnamon says:

      Internal offices are not a good thing. And when I worked in a bull pen we all got sick with the same winter bugs over and over. I think even 20 minutes of being outside helps this time of year, but when there’s so little light during the day it’s hard not to gravitate towards being inside drinking tea or hot chocolate.

  • March says:

    Oooh, snow! I bet as long as you’re inside looking out at it, it might be pretty! Hasn’t rained here in weeks and I’m missing it, I don’t care if it’s wet gloomy rain lol. TOTAL hibernation mode over here. You Are Not Alone.

    • cinnamon says:

      It’s now looking more likely there will be snow on the moor but not down here. I’ll send you some of our rain — we really don’t need all of it.

  • Portia says:

    Hey Cinnamon,
    This week in Sydney we’ve had the most rain I can remember over the last year, and over a few days, with very unseasonal cold. Like we’ve been plunged into the winter that we don’t really have. It’s such a novelty that I’ve brought my ambers out and am giving them a joyful whirl. Today L’Eau d’Amber by L’Artisan. Its sweet coziness a perfect counterpoint.
    Both Jin and I love cold weather and we often plan our overseas trips in our summer so we can have some European/US winter.
    Portia xx

    • cinnamon says:

      I vascillate between wanting the weather a bit warmer, which usually means grey and damp, and just piling on the warmth and managing the sunny but much colder. I think the latter is healthier weather. One of my favourite ambers (not sure it’s still around) was Laura Mercier’s which was good and dirty in the opening, drying down to sweet, delicious, warmth.

  • Tara C says:

    I long for a wood stove to sit by. Someday. Currently I’m in southern California where it isn’t even cold enough to wear a jacket, so it won’t be this winter.
    Would love to hibernate for the next couple of months though, or at least until the pandemic is declared over. My anxiety has been really bad the last few days and being unconscious for a while sounds appealing. Failing that, I’m enjoying my perfumes, today is 4160 Tuesdays Take Me to the River. I managed to get the Diptyque Biscuit candle, which has sold out immediately everywhere it seems. It smells delectable.

    • cinnamon says:

      I really like the wood stove. Strangely, I like the process of building the fire and then sitting by it as it changes. Ohh on Biscuit. What exactly does it smell like?