Category: Winter Survival

Dec 3

While searching Google and taking our brains for a walk, we came across the following question. Given our penchant for laziness, we thought it appropriate to pass it on to you:

Dear MissFit:
If a person were to consume an entire pumpkin pie, could the calories be burned off by several hours of vigorous rocking in a La-Z-Boy recliner every day between Thanksgiving and Christmas?
p.s. Does it make a difference if the pumpkin filling had cheesecake between the pumpkin and the pie crust?

Read MissFit’s answer


Nov 12

Marty got these USB slippers about a year ago and now depends on them to keep her feet warm when she’s working at her computer.

They come with only one heat setting, but it’s not too hot and just perfectly takes the chill off the tootsies.

Marty, whose feet are usually cold, tried several different species of space heaters, but found it annoying to heat up the space around her legs when it was just her tootsies that needed the heat.

These slippers, which are safer than a space heater and cost much less, did the trick.

The only drawback is the length of the USB cable. The manufacturers could have been a bit more generous in supplying a longer cable to reach the USB port in the back of Marty’s computer. She tried plugging the cable into an open USB port on her keyboard but it sucked too much power and the computer kept shutting down that port and, therefore, the slippers.

Mar 9

In the winter, we become obsessed with heat and moisture and the TheraTherm Digital Moist Heating Pad fills both bills.

theratherm.pngIt is the only heating pad we’ve ever tried that fits like a horse collar over our neck and shoulders and has a digital handset so you can set the temperature manually from 88 to 166 degrees Fahrenhei. That’s hot!

The flannel-covered pad has a little heft to hit so it drapes nicely and gives the feeling of really deep heat. Marty wears it while working on the computer in winter to take the kinks out of her “office posture” and to relieve a nerve in her back that acts up.

We find the controls logical and idiot proof and the design first-rate. This heating pad is built for a lifetime.

Eds. Note: As with any heating device, this pad should be monitored on elderly people and those with disabilities unable to monitor the control themselves.

Feb 7


Cait & Marty own a duplex together. Cait & her husband, Doug, are on one side and Marty is on the other. We share duties outside and have been hand-shoveling our snow.

This winter the snow has been so frequent and deep it’s felt like shoveling against an ocean. So we broke down and bought a Gimpy friendly snow-thrower, the ease of which is shown all over Cait’s face on the snow thrower’s trial run in our driveway.

Click here to read the Moka Tales write-up from our friend, Kim, who advised, procured, delivered, assembled and instructed on the art of snow-throwing.

Eds. Note: The Sears Craftsman we bought did not get very good reviews from people who have used it over time. So we shall see and update you on our experience. We did get the $99 three-year in-home warranty, which means they must come to us to fix it.

Feb 1

This delightful New York Times story is about doing nothing in winter at a lazy pace.

Read the story

Dec 24

In winter, few things aid a person like a pair of good boots - and by good we mean well-fitting and sturdy with low heels.

The other day in the grocery store, Cait came to the aid of a woman who slipped and fell while wearing what Cait calls “Floozie Boots” - high-heeled, dress boots that are an accident waiting to happen in winter.

The floor was dry, so it didn’t even take ice or a slick spot to topple this woman off her floozie boots. Cait helped her up and she walked off limping and embarrassed.

Cait didn’t think she was in the mood to hear her Gimpy spiel about heels. If you’re in the mood click here.

Dec 24

Cait and Marty are “Jarheads” - the name given to Carmex devotees.

carmex.pngCarmex has been made by the Woelbing family in Franklin, Wisconsin, since 1937. A skosh of menthol and a smidge of camphor mixed with lanolin, cocoa butter, phenol and salicylic acid in a wax base gives a cool, soothing sensation to dry lips.

Cait discovered Carmex about 20 years ago on a field trip to Minneapolis while she was in art school. Marty discovered it about the same time in a Boston drug store. (Once when Cait was crossing back into her home country of Canada, the only thing she declared at Customs was five pots of Carmex.)

Carmex stays put after it is applied, is not overly shiny and doesn’t make you look like you are wearing gobs of lip gloss from junior high.

Carmex - a Gimpy Girls staple in winter - even has a cult following and its own urban myths. (Google it on the Internet sometime).

The comedian Paula Poundstone once joked, “I chaperoned a school field trip, and I kid you not, that Carmex went around the bus like it was the water of life. I did them a favor by confiscating it and dropping it off a ravine. There’s probably a squirrel out there right now who just can’t get enough of that tub of carmex.”

Learn more about Carmex from Oprah.

Eds. Note: If you can buy this locally, do it. You’ll get a much better price than going through the Internet where the shipping costs often are much more than the price of a tub or a tube of Carmex.

Dec 21

We are not skiers. Our idea of a rousing day on the slopes is sitting by the lodge fireplace with a rum toddy, a good book and a pair of binoculars to watch the skiers.

But many of our friends are skiers, or rather were skiers before they grew averse to risk. Baby Boomers don’t want to end up in physical therapy and so fewer are taking to the slopes, and when they do it’s on flatter runs so crowded it takes the fun out of it.

Now, however, resorts are working to lure back the Boomers with pioneering programs such as “Bumps for Boomers” - which erases the fear and teaches Boomers to confidently ski - of all things - mogul runs! And to do it without needing quick reflexes or extraordinary agility.

“It’s not a gimmick,” Rose Ries, a 51-year-old psychiatrist from Philadelphia told Read the story. “I was the classic devoted skier who, nonetheless, had no chance in the moguls. Now, tree and mogul runs are the only place I go.”

click here

Dec 11

These ear warmers should have been around when Beehive hairdos were in fashion. They fit around the back of the head and don’t muss a do.

180s.pngCalled “180s” by Gorgonz, they stretch and retract to get the right fit over your ears and then fold up into small disks to pop into your purse, pants or coat pocket.

They keep the wind out, are light weight, snug without being uncomfortable and can be worn under a hat.

Click here to view a variety of colors and materials. They seem to vary in price depending on the Web site so search around to find the best price and style.

Dec 6

In winter, the Ice Grip Tip should be on the cane of anyone who ventures outside even to get the mail or refill the bird feeder.grip.png

It attaches easily to a cane and has a retractable tip so you can quickly pull it up and out of the way when you head indoors.

cane.pngThe five-prong tip fits canes and crutches from 5/8 inches to one-inch in diameter and comes with mounting screws. All you need is screwdriver. (A perfect task for Mr. 7 Hands.)

This year, during the cold months, increase your stability and reduce your chance of a fall with the Cane Ice Grip Tip.

(Eds. Note: And if you’re interested in a cane grip that qualifies as a weapon … just kidding … sort of …. check out this Single Point Grip Tip.)

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