For most, the gruelling -35 degree celcius weather with wind chill that would make your nose hairs freeze over in seconds, isn't the type of weather that makes you skip down the icy sidewalk. Canadian winters can be harsh, limit your motivation and physical activity, and may just make you want to curl up in the warmest corner of your home and go to sleep until Spring.
You know the saying, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em? Being a native Ottawan (Batoul!), we've come up with a number of ways to get over the winter blues and instead appreciate what mother nature has driven our way.
Hot liquids: Soup, chai and hot chocolate are always a good idea. Ali is unfortunately sometimes in denial about the seasonality of soup, but he doesn't have to worry about that in the winter. Who wouldn't love rolling up on a couch in thick socks, a good book and a hot cup of chocolat to end your day in total relaxation.
Touch-screen winter gloves: Yes, yes. We are serious about this. Especially because Ali is the one who has a pair and really enjoys reading the morning news on his way to work without having to take his gloves on and off. Or to chop off the finger tips.
Cottage getaways: Last year, we rented a cute cottage about an hour outside of the city for the weekend through our 'go to' airbnb. We learned how to sleep in (that's a lie - we already know how!), keep a fire going, eat fresh fruit and croissants all morning, read, watch movies and just enjoy ourselves while appreciating the white winterland from behind the fireplace. There are so many getaway options close by!
Skating: While we do enjoy indoor sports and activities, throwing on an old pair of skates and gliding along the Rideau Canal is something that all of humanity must experience. While the bruises you will accumulate from several falls won't be the most pleasant thing, the surreal feeling gliding on ice along with the deliciousness of munching down a couple of beavertails (fried dough pastry that's to die for!) is so worth it.
Viking boots: Not exactly, but they look like they should be worn by one! Keeping our toes toasty is one of our top priorities. We like the feeling of feeling our feet. So we've invested in them with Sorels and Timberlands for the win!
Art and culture: The world doesn't stop just because your toes are frost-bitten! Get out there and enjoy museum exhibitions (the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto is one for the books!), local winter markets, Winterlude and lots of other cool ways to get you out of your homebodiness. It's hard, but we try once in a while.
Get the heck out of here: Last year, we packed our bags and got onto a flight to southern California. And was it ever amazing! We spent Christmas on the beach in sandals and fluttered around without a care. It was definitely difficult to come back to -25 January weather, but it did give us a different flavour of fun. If you just can't handle the treacherous cold, then of course, the Caribbean could also do the trick! Beware of sunkissed withdrawals though upon your return.
And to end off this post just right, here are a few photos of us prancing around during a blizzard this winter. Bringing sexy back!