Day 246: Cure the Winter Blues.

I so don't look like this in the winter...
...not even in Paris.
Illustration by Cécile Mancion

The holidays are long gone and over, award season is here which always makes me feel poor, unaccomplished and ugly, not to mention that it's dreary and cold - everywhere (except L.A apparently). Is it just me or is anyone else feeling a winter funk creeping in? 

Not being someone who copes well with the change this time of year as winter depression gets the best of me, over the years I have had to come up a solution. I've created the perfect three-part combination to cure the winter blues.

1. Cocktails (you knew that one was coming)
While red wine is my drink of choice, when I want an invigorating cocktail, I like to play with flavored vodkas, fruits and herbs. Here's one that I whipped up one night:

Garden Greyhound
3oz. Pink Grapefruit Belvedere vodka
3oz. Pink Grapefruit juice or Blood Orange juice

Add a tiny pinch of salt for complexity
Shake well and serve in a martini glass or highball
Top off with a splash of Perrier or Champagne 

(to make it a royale)
Add a sprig of basil for garnish

2. Facial
I love a good homemade remedy whenever I run out of my masks. My mother taught me that a great beauty elixir can be made with things already in the house. I remember sitting in our living room in Manhattan side by side wearing robes and homemade natural beauty masks while she sipped on Sauvignon Blanc and I drank ginger a wine glass. 

This exfoliating recipe is the cleanest and easiest:

Homemade Lemon Sugar Scrub
Take 1 lemon and roll it on the counter to soften the inside of the lemon so that it will be easier to extract the juice.
After it's been rolled and beaten into submission, cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into a bowl and add a splash of water to dilute the lemon juice. Add a tablespoon of white granulated sugar and a drizzle of honey into your mix and stir. Test the ratio between sugar and water until it's a paste that won't slide off your face and end up all over your apartment. Once it's on massage in upward circular motions for 10-15 seconds, then sit back, sip your Garden Greyhound and leave on for 10 minutes while listening to...

3. Playlist
I hope you weren't expecting Enya or zen chimes. If so, shame on you! You should know me better by now. Instead of comatose New Age music, I have hand selected songs that without fail will make you laugh (isn't that we need in winter?)...especially after a cocktail or two. Why? Because the lyrics are absolutely ridiculous.

Micheal McDonald - I Keep Forgettin'
Wham! - Everything She Wants*
Billy Ocean - Caribbean Queen
Hall and Oates - I Can't Go For That
Serge Gainsbourg - No Comment
Tina Turner - Private Dancer
Atlantic Starr - Always**
Anita Baker - Caught In the Rapture
Jennifer Lopez - You Belong to Me***
PM Dawn - Set Adrift on Memory Bliss
Steve Perry - Oh Sherry
Phil Collins - Sussudio****

To listen to this playlist in its entirety, click here.

* Please listen to these crazy lyrics. It takes ridiculous to the next level.

** "Let's go make a family"? What producer thought that was a great lyric?  Even as a kid, I found it odd and pushy.

*** I absolutely love the original version by Carly Simon but the J.Lo version is just so stupid that I had hers to the mix.  

**** What the hell is a Sussudio? 

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  1. I love a good playlist and agree they must be appropriately enjoyed with a drink of choice. I adore how you incorporate champagne into your routine either with a bubble back or splash in a cocktail - makes everything seem much more luxurious.

    1. Bubbles always make me feel festive and special!

  2. I love new cocktails ideas, facial recipes and cheesy music! Perfect formula for my upcoming weekend! Thank you for this. :)

    1. Cheesy music, indeed. These songs bring it home.

      Enjoy your weekend, pretty lady!

  3. Your cocktail recipe sounds delicious! Especially the blood orange juice. Yum!

    1. Careful, these bad boys sneak up on you! Cheers!

  4. I'm beating the winter funk with a long weekend in Venice:) Ahhhh to wake up with daylight at 7 am instead of 8:30 and to see the sun!:) It'll have to keep us going until Easter:) February and March will be complete madness:)

    And why am I online if I'm vacationing in Venice? Cuz I started a mad graduate course on the 2nd of January and actually had to bring a pile of articles with me and study a few hours a day so I won't lag behind (which also helps me fight the winter blues since I have virtually zero free time for myself!).

    But I like your suggestions:) I have Wham's Everything she wants on my Ipod;) And even more shameful stuff;)

    1. Weekend in Venice! You poor thing! La vie est dure, non? :P Qu'est-ce que vous faites là-bas?

      Congrats on your on-line program! What are you studying?

      And...omg, how ridiculous is that Wham! song? "Now you tell me that you're having my baby, I'll tell you that I'm happy if you want me to!" and "My God! I don't even think that I love you!!!" Seriously?

  5. Sounds like the perfect cure for winter funk - which I've also been suffering from this week.

    I love the image of you and your mom sitting in your robes and enjoying each other's company with sugar scrub on your face.

    1. The winter is hard...especially after the high of the holidays. Luckily, winter is short in Paris! It's over by March! Woo hoo!!

      My mom and I had fun when I was young...this was one of our favorite things to do. :)

  6. I think I remember hearing "Sussudio" was just a filler lyric until he found something better.

    But then realized nothing fit quite like Sussudio...quite right

    1. Really?!? I always thought it was her name...until I listened to the rest of the lyrics.

      Thanks for the info...I'm not even joking.