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Hamptons Summer House Blues

December 10th, 2010 · 1 Brilliant Opinion · Hamptons


Every year around this time I get two ailments.  The first is seasonal affective disorder (SAD).   Seasonal affective disorder is the “winter blues.”  It can be characterized by a serious mood change thought to be related to decreased sunlight exposure as the seasons change.  It is characterized by  fatigue, difficulty waking up in the mornings, a tendency to overeat and weight gain.  There is also a summer version of SAD.  Folks can get depressed as the days lengthen, the sun starts shining and temperatures rise.  (BFFs – if I ever get summer seasonal affective disorder- please do the right thing and put me out of my misery).  Can’t imagine beach weather making folks blue!

The second ailment I get is what I call the Hamptons Summer House Blues.

Hamptons Summer House

Usually, it comes on right after Thanksgiving.  The autumnal temperatures drop, all the lovely foliage is gone, the apples and pumpkins are picked clean from the fields – and Petro, our oil company starts delivery.   It gets hard to fall asleep as I ponder heating a home I spend fewer days in during cold weather months.  Around the first of the month, I start getting a serious craving for carbohydrates. It may be a coincidence, but it seems to start around the first of the month – when the mortgage payment is due.   I also get pains in my legs and joints.  This might be due to the hours spent raking leaves, doing yard clean-up and moving patio furniture indoors.  When my symptoms set in, I place our realtor on speed dial. Every winter we say we’re selling – but then we climb down off the edge – and settle down.

So how do I beat the double whammy of SAD and Hamptons Summer House Blues?

  1. Exercise, Exercise, Exercise – even a brisk walk can help shake the blues off.
  2. C’mon baby, light my fire – the pool may be closed but winter is a great time to use the fireplace.  I love to toast marshmallows with the kids and cuddle up with a good book or with Big P.
  3. Home energy check –  Rather than get mad at our oil company, I use the winter months to seal up drafty windows, doors, and change duct work filters.  We end up with a toasty warm house and lower energy bills.
  4. Retail therapy – I’ve been known to jump on a plane to get my summer sunshine mood back.  This year I’m doing a little “shop therapy” and using the winter months to scope out luxury  linens, towels, pillow covering and throws.  I feel better when beautiful soft fabrics touch my skin. My favorite sites are Garnet Hill, Lands End and Pottery Barn.
  5. Focus on the future – although the weather outside might be frightening…summer is only  6 months away.  I reach out to our previous summer renters and start securing bookings. Rental income does not cover all our costs – but it is a big help.  Check out our beautiful cottage by clicking on the advertisement on the upper right hand side of this blog’s home page.  (My blog- my shameless self-promotion.)  I also pick a home improvement project to keep us busy in the winter but that we will enjoy in the summer. Last year we did an outdoor room and poolside patio.

    Poolside Patio - Blues Therapy 2009

    Do you get the winter blues?  Summer house dragging you down?  Tell me what you’re doing to get back in the groove!


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One Comment so far ↓

  • Calvin

    There was a doctor talking about that on 1010 news this morning. He said make sure you get some sunlight even if its a few minutes each day. Love your post. It’s so true.

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