Wintering with the Hinsdale Public Library

Before you know it, the New Year's ball will drop and January will begin. The carols will stop, the tree will be on the curb, the string lights will go dim and we will enter the deepest depths of winter.

Maybe you can tell: Winter isn't really my thing. I love the promise of a new year and I can't wait to welcome 2024, but ... I wish I could do it without the letdown of the holidays ending and the Darkness pressing in upon me.

The good news is, the Hinsdale Public Library is ready to help. In particular, our "Library of Things" collection can help get you through the long nights. Here are a few special items you can get from the library to perk you up:

• A Roku preloaded with your favorite streaming channels. Is there a show you've been wanting to watch on Paramount Plus or Max but you just don't want to subscribe to another service? We've got it covered!

• An NES Classic Edition console so you can go back in time and play all of your favorite original video games, like Super Mario Bros., Donkey Kong and Zelda.

• Color Muse 2, which will help you paint match any color on your walls (or elsewhere), and our new Stud Finder. Plan out a home refresh while you are cooped up inside!

• A Pickleball Set so you can get in shape for the summer by practicing in your basement (after you remove anything breakable).

• Coming soon: A VHS Converter Kit. Reminisce over family memories and then preserve them for the next generation.

• If all else fails, you can check out a brand new seasonal affective disorder lamp right now and soak yourself in "sunlight!"

If none of that gives you the spark you need to get through to April, it may be time to learn to slow down, reflect, and truly embrace the hibernating times. Some books to get you started:

• "Wintering: the Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times" by Katherine May

• "How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy" by Jenny Odell

• "The Art of the Wasted Day" by Patricia Hampl

You can also embrace the Scandinavian tradition of hygge - the idea of finding comfort and coziness every day. Begin your journey toward these feelings with:

• "The Little Nook of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living" by Meik Wiking

• "My Hygge Home: How to Make Home your Happy Place" by Meik Wiking

• "How to Hygge: The Nordic Secrets to a Happy Life" by Signe Johansen

• "Hygge: The Danish Art of Happiness" by Marie Tourell Søderberg

If you're a more action-oriented type, you can fight the winter doldrums by getting some new year's resolution tips, picking up an old skill, or trying new foods at these library classes and events:

• Get your antiques appraised on Wednesday, Jan. 10, and then find out how to clear the clutter of everything else with a professional organizer on Saturday, Jan. 20.

• Get back to crafting with our cozy group Needlework Night two Thursdays each month.

• You can even warm up with some delicious wintery stews at "United Foods of America: Chilis, Soups and Stews" on Thursday, Jan. 18, or learn about matcha tea on Saturday, Jan. 13.

There's no shortage of what you can do and learn at the library, especially when everything else slows down. And so, here's to a 2024 filled with learning, trying, community, joy and light.

Happy New Year to all from the Hinsdale Public Library!

- Lizzy Boden is the adult services manager at the Hinsdale Public Library.