People should be required to take a mandatory class on survival skills before they move to New England.

This was me when I first moved here… naive AF, shivering-my-tail-off me. By the way, I was inside my first apartment when I took this picture, and I was still cold even with my coat, scarf and hat. The management never turned the heat on. It was so bad that I had to move, but that is a whole different blog.

It has been two years, and I think I finally know how to dress for the frigid winters. Keyword: Layers. However, can I just say my life would have been so much easier if someone would have sat me down and given me some basic instructions instead of rolling their eyes at the Florida girl in the cute (but inappropriate) UGG boots?! Cute shoes just don't cut it in New England. And, when it comes to boots, a proper New Englander actually needs several pairs for all the different types of winter weather: galoshes for the rain and mud, boots with light traction for sleet, shearling-lined boots and boots with fur for when temperatures plummet below zero, and boots with cleats that can handle icy sidewalks. Did I miss anything? Meanwhile, the cute boots are collecting dust in the closet.

These are the guidelines someone should have given me, posted on Facebook by the US National Weather Service in Gray.:

(Credit: US National Weather Service In Gray)

If you know someone who is moving to New England, please share my blog with them. It will save them from suffering through the cold, while trying to figure things out on their own.