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10 reasons not to go walking in a winter wonderland

About Kate Benz
Picture Kate Benz 412-380-8515
Fanfare Columnist
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Kate Benz is the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Fanfare columnist.

By Kate Benz

Published: Friday, Jan. 3, 2014, 8:57 p.m.

While everyone else is out there catching a breath of fresh air, we've dug up 10 reasons why it's absolutely unnecessary to leave the house:

1. Should old acquaintance be forgot: “Mad Men” begins its two-part final season in 2014 with seven episodes that pave the way for the last seven to be aired in 2015. “True Blood” is bidding adieu in 2014. The new season of “Downton Abbey” and “Justified” begin this month.

2. Sweat it out … classically: What's the point in joining a gym you'll never go to, anyway? Underscored with gentle, classical music, you'll almost forget that ballet-inspired workouts, including “Ballet Beautiful with Mary Helen Bowers” (she's the one to thank for Natalie Portman's body of work in “Black Swan”), are kicking your butt.

3. Beauty and the box: Every month, samples and full-sized beauty products from companies such as Birchbox and Ipsy arrive based on a profile you complete during the sign-up process. For a nominal fee, you'll get treated to a box that contains skin care, fragrance, makeup and/or a fun extra.

4. Outside stimulation: Worried about running low on Joe? Sign up for a Coffee of the Month Club. Craft Coffee or Citizen Bean delivers a tasting box straight to your door that contains three different roasters from around the country that will make 42 cups of coffee.

5. Good sports: The Super Bowl, 2014 Winter Olympics, March Madness and a full slate of Penguins games. No need to be out there, pulling a groin muscle, when your favorite athlete is.

6. Kitchen aid: Tired of fighting the coupon-clipping crowds? Fill your cart up online and let Best Grocery Delivery shop until they drop the bags off at your door.

7. Muscle relaxer: 'Tis the season for an at-home massage. Because there's nothing worse than having to go back outside in the biting cold after you've been massaged into a blissful state of relaxation for an hour.

8. Center stage: No reason to leave the house or fly across the pond to access the best of British theater. Shakespeare, ballet, opera, new writing, classics — you name it, they've got it. Each performance is available to rent for a limited time online or as a permanent addition to your desktop. Find it at

9. Farm your own market: No need to wait for warmer climes for the best bumper crop of grown goodies. Everything from basil to carrots, mushrooms to lettuce, and even tomatoes can be grown inside with the right lighting (or lack thereof) and soil.

10. Retail therapy: Forget schlepping to your nearest shopping mall when you can shop until you drop online. What's best to buy in January? Furniture and electronics, fitness equipment and Christmas goods are usually offered at deep discounts.




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