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Our winter months may have been a bit deceptive as of late but there is one thing that is certain, there is a definite chill in the air tonight. In fact it’s been so cold that I have actually had to put the central heating on for the first time this year.

Now don’t put me down as one of those people that literally wait until my nose has icicles hanging from it before I decide to turn on the heating, but I do try and balance things out a bit and try and keep it on for a minimum of time until the house warms a little bit.

In an ideal world I would to be one of those people that would rather put on that extra pair of socks and take up the extra warmth of an additional jumper, yet I am not. So I look to try and keep my heating bills down as best as I can by using other methods.

  • Switch over your duvets, put the summer ones away for another year and grab the big winter ones. Another idea is to use those summer duvets by putting them on top of the mattress, this gives added comfort and warmth.
  •  Go and find out all of your blankets and throws. I rarely leave the central heating on throughout the night as we all struggle to sleep with it on, so each member of the family has a folded up blanket right at the end of their bed if they need it.
  • Get the thicker curtains out. I have a wonderful pair at home that I haven’t got round to putting up yet, mainly because the husband still has not put up the curtain rails. If you do not own a thicker set of curtains, why not try and put a thicker lining by adding some lining fabric? People do not realise that nearly a quarter of all heat is lost through the windows, so the more you can do to prevent this then the better.
  • Sort out the winter clothes, literally re-organise everything and store away clothes that they are not going to be wearing during the winter season. Replace them with the types of clothes that they will wear. If you have children this will especially help to keep their bedrooms tidy as they won’t be going through their drawers throwing all their shorts and t-shirts on the floor.
  • Either get the draught excluders out or make your own. In my case it is my front door that seems to be the draughtiest so there is always something laid down in front of the door.

My next priorities are:

  • Stock up on spare bulbs, candles, batteries and matches for emergencies.
  • Making sure my first aid box is fully stocked, it is so much better to have something that you don’t need rather than not having something that you desperately need.
  • Make sure the grass is freshly mown and tidy up the garden.
  • Get the car prepared for the winter, by putting it through a service if you can afford it. Also stock it up with emergency supplies just in case we go somewhere and get stuck. That means blankets, food and spare clothes. Even find some local rock salt suppliers and have a small packet in your car in case you have trouble in the snow.

Finally, get the hot water bottles out because judging by the last few winters you are going to need them. Some wellington boots might be an idea too for when it snows, yes I did say when and not if!

So you have found some rock salt suppliers, followed the rest of my tips and you are now fully prepared for the worst that winter can throw at you.