The minimum preparation I need to get out of the house:
Back home in Sg, I could go out of the house wearing pretty much whatever I'm wearing, except PJs, although when I was a kid, I used to wear PJs to the market all the time! If I'm going to be anywhere indoors for an extended period of time, say shopping mall, I just stuff a cardigan or scarf into bag. It's ridiculously cold indoors.
In Oxford, I could make a quick exit just by pulling on a coat. Well, almost. I remember once as a fresher, I woke up to find myself 10 min away from the 9 am lecture. I literally rolled out of bed in my T-shirt and track pants, put on my sandals (!), grabbed my bag and coat, and I was out in under two minutes. Some trade-offs though - didn't wear a bra (just keep the coat on!), didn't wash up or brush teeth and hence didn't dare talk to people..
And here, in Evanston, I need five minutes minimally. Cos the room is always warm, I'm in Sg clothes or PJs most of the time. So I need to change into a lot of stuff - usually a top with an optional sweater depending on the top, tights and a skirt or a pair of jeans depending on what shoes I wear - I can't wear jeans with my black boots; my fat calves have filled them to capacity. Then pull on the black or white boots, taking care not to catch the tights (and my skin!) if I'm wearing the black ones, before wrapping a scarf round my neck, putting on the heavy coat, AND grabbing my ear muffs and gloves then my bag. Late? Well, too bad! Cos I'm not going to freeze!
Kind of glad to read that the coldest should be over after January.. Can't wait :)
In the meantime, here's a really cute snowy cupcake outside a Macs in C-town- so winter isn't without its merits!