For many, April is a welcomed month. After about five months of cold and wintery weather, April brings forth longer days, warmer weather, and rain that seems to just wash away the remnants of winter. Some days are sunny and seventy degrees, others are chilly with soaking rain and snow showers. Since spring has sprung and I am sure that most of us are feeling cooped up from such a long and isolating winter, here are the top ten things on my April To Do list:

  1. It’s not quite time to plant the vegetable garden in Upstate New York, but it is time to get plants some started on your windowsill. Start those plants that just seem to take for ever to get anything from or need to be strong in case of a spring or early summer downpour. Tomatoes and bell peppers are easy to start in a small pot, along with cucumbers, pumpkins, lettuce, and green beans. Don’t forget the flowers and herbs too! Basil, Dill, Oregano, and Chives grow quickly as do zinnias, cosmos, impatiens, marigolds, and morning glory.
  2. If it works for you, plant some bulbs. There are lots of leftover daffodils and tulips left in the stores. Grab them for cheap and plants them deep after they dry out a bit in your garden, along walkways, even in cemeteries.
  3. Wash and put away most of your winter apparel. Winter coats, snow pants, hats, gloves, scarves, and thermals can all be washed and stored away. I recommend leaving out one set of gloves and a hat with a warm water-resistant coat just in case.
  4. Get outside when you can! Go for a hike and see Mother nature waking up. Get outside for your run or walk.
  5. Purge your closet and dresser drawers. It will only take one day, but you will have more room and feel cleansed for the rest of the summer. The next chilly or rainy day this month, take all the clothes and shoes out of your closet and drawers. Wipe down any shelves or walls and only put back what you have worn in the last year and what still fits. Everything else can be donated or passed along.
  6. Ladies, purge your make-up, lotions, foundations, nail polishes, fragrances, etc. This should not take too long as these things only last a year or two, whether you use them or not. If you use them, then reorder; if not sayonara.
  7. IF you have kids, go through the outdoor toys, like water guns, pool floats, bubble stuff, chalk, and nets. Frayed nets, flakey chalk, leaky water guns all need to be thrown away. If you need to, replace them. 
  8. Visit your hairstylist. Get a haircut, get any color or highlights you prefer, even get your nails done if you choose. It is time to get rid of those split ends and liven up your look! Plus, they probably need the business.
  9. Get your car to your garage. If you live I an area like me, you probably have snow tires. It’s time to take them off. While the car is there, get it inspected or tuned up. While you’re at it, give it a good cleaning too.
  10. Order your pool chemical supplies now! If you’re like me, it takes about another month to fully open your pool, so the water on and under the winter cover will start to grow algae. And that can make opening your pool a nightmare. So, pour some Algaecide on top of the winter cover and under the cover asap until you get your filter running. And that’s not all you’ll need. Order what you will need for the summer now; I have heard that chemicals will be hard to get this year.

Bonus – Finally, start planning Mother’s Day. If you’re a mom, start dropping hints-obvious hints. If you’re not a mom and have one in your life, start paying attention and don’t leave the planning to the last minute. Examples – A late morning hike with brunch/lunch to follow, weekend get-away, mimosas with her friends, a day without children.

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