I don’t know about where you live, but where I live, it’s winter half the year. In my corner of Canada, on the outskirts of Saint John, New Brunswick, it starts to get cold in October. It gets dreary in November. It’s icy by December. Snowy in January, February and March. And seriously – Spring doesn’t come until the END of APRIL. It’s a LONG haul.
And here’s what happens: a lot of us Canadians love to whine about how hard it is, how cold it is, how long it is. “Winter Whine” is a thing that we do (NOT Winter Wine, although, that IS a thing!). But I gotta tell ya – I actually LIKE winter. Sure, I’ll complain with everyone, from time to time. But the majority of the time, I kinda like winter.
You have to admit: There’s true enjoyment that comes from seasonal changes, when the landscape is transformed into something completely new, multiple times a year. Life is always changing, full of new sensations and new activities.
My Facebook memories are always reminding me of my appreciation for winter:
When I look back at my list of #1000gifts, inspired by Ann Voskamp’s book “One Thousand Gifts” (another Canadian!), I actually have winter-themed things on that list that I’m thankful for – MULTIPLE times! I love how this routine, of writing down life’s gifts, turns you into a constantly-thankful person. It changes your perspective on life. And for the days that you forget, and you force yourself to add to it, it turns a day completely around, and prevents you from the daily deluge of self-pity.
(*Note that my list has yet to make it to 1000 – I’ve been working on it for YEARS. But it’s okay. It’s still a constant that I get to go back to from time to time, so I’m thankful that I have a list to always add too).
If you live where there’s a real winter, you’re gonna have to deal, regardless. Right?! It’s just a part of life. So, if you’re overwhelmed by all the negative aspects of winter (and the Negative Nancy’s ranting about it), focus on these 10 awesome reasons to love winter.
10 Reasons Why I Love Winter
1. Winter walks
Variety is the spice of life, and going for a walk in winter is a whole new sensory experience. Crisp, cold air touching your face. Tingling fingers. Deep, cold air breaths in your lungs. Snowflakes tickling your skin.
Challenges on your terrain. Your regular ‘haunts’ become a whole new world (not the Arabian kind) in the winter. I love the trails close to my house at our local pool/rink, the QPlex, and when I go into the trails, it’s like entering a new world, even though I’m there all the time in the spring, summer and fall! I actually get lost and or turned around, on my winter walks there, because it looks so different!!!
It’s a new way to challenge your body too, because you’re dealing with slippery or bumpy surfaces that you have to navigate, and use your balance and concentration. See – these wintery walks are good for your body AND your brain!
Not to mention the hush. You walk under the snowy canopy of trees and the world falls away in that heavy, snowed in hush that lets peace settle instantly in your centre.
2. Hot drinks
My journal – Gift #20: A mug of hot tea on a cold day
Hot tea is so comforting. Being out in the cold means I get to look forward to that hot mug to wrap my fingers around. And, winter is the perfect excuse for an extra special treat of hot chocolate. My friend Katie Peterson and I really embraced this article that shares that Norwegians”… view winter as something to be enjoyed, not something to be endured.” One of the ways they look forward to winter is the warm drinks. So Katie and I decided last winter to go all out in our hot chocolate enjoyment. Make your own or buy an extra special mix (Read: dark chocolate hot chocolate!), and ALWAYS have the following on hand:
Whip cream (either in a can or fresh cream)
Dark chocolate bar
Make sure you add all the above to your hot chocolate. Yes, the whip cream, drizzled with caramel sauce, covered in dark chocolate shavings (use your grater!) and sprinkled with sea salt. You want some right now, don’t you?
UPDATE: We’ve discovered the ULTIMATE hot chocolate this year, thanks to the Pioneer Woman, using just milk and chocolate chips. Winter will never be the same again!
I love snow. Really! It’s a fun thing!!! Once the shovelling is all done, of course, it’s fun to make giant snowballs, go snowshoeing, slide in it, make snow angels and forts.
And I LOVE when there’s big, fluffy snowflakes falling in the sky, tickling my face. It’s mesmerizing! Or when the sun is bright, and you’re surrounded by a glittering wonderland and you’re left in complete awe?!?!
4. Catching Up On A Good Read
It’s too cold to leave the house, so grab a heavy blanket, your favourite slippers, and one of the books from your ‘I’m going to read this someday’ pile and get reading!
I’ve just gotten my hands on the most amazing custom made mocassins, from Cassie Harris, here in Saint John. If you’re lacking in the slipper department, you’ll definitely want to connect with her to get a pair of your own (made with real Moose hide and Rabbit fur! ). These are so warm and cozy! [and last a lifetime!], and absolutely perfect for keeping your toes warm while curled up reading!
5. No Bugs
I’ve loved winter for a long time for this reason!
Think about this: Without winter, you’d have to tolerate bugs year round. I’m just not cool with that. I love having an extended break from earwigs, mosquitos, long legged spiders, etc,. etc., etc.
6. Going to Bed Early
My Journal: Gift #15 – Sleep, long and deep, in a warm, soft bed
It’s dark so early, it’s storming, it’s cold- time to catch up on sleep! Us grown ups love a good night’s sleep, and winter is the perfect time for it!
7. Chilli, Roasts, Soups….
Comfort. Food. ‘Nuff said.
8. Time for Organizing
You’re inside more often in the winter, which is the perfect excuse to get things organized! Closets, cupboards, files, storage rooms, toys. It’s so satisfying to get all of that done!
9. Cozy sweaters
Isn’t wearing a cozy sweater around the house the best?!? Pair it with fluffy socks and leggings, and a hot mug steaming in your hand; you couldn’t be any closer to cozy-comfort-heaven.
10. Stay in, Have Sex
Sometimes, it’s just too cold to go out there. What better excuse is there to lay in bed and fool around with your spouse, right?And FYI: you’ll be hearing me talk about this again in future posts. You’ve been forewarned!
See?! It’s Not So Bad!
Now, after reading my extensive list of why I love winter , are you reminded of all the good things about Winter? Make a decision to look at the bright side of Winter this year, despite the cold and inconvenience of it, so that it’s not something you have to dread OR endure, but look forward to!
What do you love about winter? Share below what I’ve missed that you appreciate the most!