Winter is a time for keeping warm.

In the frozen cold days of winter, it’s all about the clothing. This is no time for immodesty. Pile it on. For me, a good winter armor includes: snow boots (with wool socks if you have them), snow pants, warm gloves or mittens, a muffler for windy weather, a sweater or warm shirt, heavy coat with a hood, and balaclava topped with a stocking cap, buttoned down beneath the hood.

Any amount of time spent out of doors these days calls for nothing less than mummification.

Another key to keeping warm in the frozen cold is to keep moving. This is no time for loitering, no time for standing still, lest you find yourself to the ground like a Popsicle (and, for all of the kids out there, yes, putting your tongue to a metal post will yield unwanted results).

The words “frozen” and “cold” have great connotations on a mid-summer Kansas day. Their combination this time of year means unlimited freezer space for all of those leftovers from holiday cooking.

As a young boy, I loved to stay outside on snow-filled days as long as my mother would allow. Today, I still appreciate a good winter walk, especially on a sunny day with the silence broken only by fresh snow crunching underfoot. Crystalline winter skies appear so pure and fragile, but we all know what dangers they hold. That’s why it’s always good to be prepared for winter travels with a full tank of gas, a charged cell phone, and some water and food, just in case. Also, wearing warm clothing—or having it in the car—is never a bad idea. Trouble often comes along when you’re not looking for it.

Even with all of the challenges that winter adds to our lives, this truly is a time for enjoying the stark beauty of nature, especially when viewed through a clear glass window inside a warm shelter.

In the meantime, as you trudge your way through the bitter cold and winds of winter, may your heart be warmed by thoughts of home and family, perhaps with a warm fireplace awaiting you—or at least a cup of hot cocoa.