Now is the time to try and remember those little spots (creeks, springs, etc.) you found that you thought might hold ducks, but didn't hunt for some reason or another. First I'd look for open water, then I'd look for ducks. Small streams might not be frozen, bigger rivers should have some open water, but icebergs floating downstream aren't safe for man or dog. Saltwater is always an option depending on how far you want to travel.
By Jan. 1 you might get a warm up and then you have 10 days to hit it hard.
Or, maybe just make friends with Mike J. and he might just take you to that spring spot.