How to learn to love winter – or at the very least, tolerate it

love winter


Guys, I have a bit of a secret. Okay, it’s actually not so much a secret if you know me.  My husband told me I should write controversial posts, so naturally I dived right into the most controversial subject I could think of.

I love winter.

Also, please don’t hate me.

That first snow is something I eagerly anticipate for weeks before it happens. And while I don’t get out as much as I’d like, there’s nothing like being bundled up and going for a snowy walk.  I even enjoy the peacefulness after I’ve helped my husband shovel our ridiculously long driveway (but, since he shovels way more than me, and often by himself, he’d probably disagree with that last statement.  I don’t blame him. 🙂 )

I even love getting all my winter gear on in the morning and going out to feed the chickens on a cold winter day. After I’ve given the chickens fresh water, more food, and collected the eggs I love to stand outside the coop and just soak in the quiet and peaceful moment in the snow for a few minutes before I head back indoors to face the day.

chickens in winter

But let’s be honest – part of my love for winter is the coziness inside as well. There is something beautiful and comforting about hunkering down on a snowy evening in the shelter of our 4 walls.

And, if I’m being REALLY honest here, I adore winter in November, December, and even January, but by February I’m ready for Spring. That’s when I am dreaming of gardens and warmth and all things blooming.

So, just like everyone, I do reach my point where I am done with winter, but I tend to enjoy it for a few months at least.

There’s a common misconception about Canadians though. I think people tend to think we all love winter. The truth is, I’m the odd man out over here. Sure, I can find some who adore winter as well, but we are definitely outnumbered. I would say a large majority of Canadians are NOT a fan of winter.

evergreens in the snow

I know it doesn’t matter whether you live in Canada or the US, there is a chance you live somewhere that is very snowy for months on end. I’ve seen those pictures of winter in Montana, or Colorado, or Nebraska. Or how about Alaska? The people in Alaska make me feel way too soft when I grow tired of winter. 🙂

And compared to places like Iceland and Russia, Canada is pretty warm. 🙂

Unless you live in Northern Canada, that is. Then you could probably match Iceland for winter weather.

Here’s the thing about winter though. While I think there is a part of my enjoyment of winter that just comes naturally (I did grow up in a tiny northern Ontario town where winter was a bit longer and colder than where I live now), much has to do with how I respond to the winter weather.

It’s easier to love it when you are warm, cozy, and feeling all the hygge.

If you haven’t heard of hygge, let me fill you in on what it is.

Hygge is a part of Danish and Norwegian culture and has been catching on in recent years in our parts of the world. Basically it’s a state of cozyness and comfort. It’s a feeling and while you can’t buy hygge, you can help create it by doing certain things to promote a hygge-type atmosphere.

If anyone knows how to create a cozy and comfortable atmosphere and feeling in the winter, I’d say it’s the Danish and Norwegian people who have dark, long winters.

If you are like many out there who aren’t friends with winter, there are ways you can learn to love it, or if you can’t learn to love it, maybe you can learn to tolerate it just a little more.


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Dress appropriately.

Guys, this is hands down my number one tip for loving the winter season. Our house is on the colder side because we heat with a wood stove and so anyone who has a wood stove knows you often have some really warm rooms, and then you have some pretty cold rooms where the heat doesn’t quite reach.

You will always find me wearing cozy, thick sweaters at home, slippers, and sometimes I’ll even wear a tuque inside (how’s that for showing my Canadian? 🙂 ) I like to be warm, and I’ll do what it takes to get there, even in winter.

When I go outdoors I practice the same idea. Snow pants are my best friend. My coat is a really good quality coat and is long with a warm hood. If it’s cold enough I always wear mittens and a hat and a scarf. My boots are ones that are made for the snow.

Honestly, I probably look like a giant fluffball in the winter, but I just don’t care. I want to be happy in the winter and the only way I’ll be happy is if I’m not freezing.

So, dress appropriately, and you will find your love for winter increase. 🙂

Pick up a winter hobby

Winter is way more enjoyable when there’s things you like to do during the season. It’s why skiers love winter! But you don’t have to be a skier to stop hating winter (which is really good because the one and only time I went downhill skiing I ran into a (thankfully, small) tree. I decided maybe I wasn’t cut out for it.)

The last two years we built a rink outside for the kids. I, of course made sure to spend some time on it as well.

Maybe you could try skating, or cross country skiing, or snowshoeing. Maybe ice fishing. Maybe you could find a place that offers dog sled rides! How about learning how to make elaborate snow sculptures if you are more on the creative side. There are many activities to do in the winter.

Go for a snowy walk in the woods.

There is absolutely nothing like walking through the woods when it’s lightly snowing. Not only is it peaceful, the beauty is awe-inspiring. We never do it enough, but every time we do it in the winter it is one of my absolute favorite moments of the season.

snowy walk

Keep blankets in the living room.

Hanging over our couches are blankets. When I get a little cold while working on my laptop or watching tv I can easily reach for a blanket and instantly feel cozier. Not to mention the right blankets can add a coziness to your living room. Textiles are a great way to make your living room feel insanely inviting on those cold winter nights.

Use candles and twinkling lights.

I love to light my beeswax candles and turn on my white twinkling lights. While you can do that in the summer, they just don’t have to same kind of effect. There is something about hunkering down for the evening, or waking up in the morning and lighting a candle, drinking my coffee or tea, and turning on the lights.

It’s an inviting space that I love to be in and makes those dark mornings or nights so perfect.  If you have a wood stove or fireplace, be sure to add a roaring fire as well.


I find many of my candle holders at thrift stores.  Copper everything is my favorite.

Add some winter scents.

As you can see, I’m all about atmosphere here. A cozy atmosphere can be made more perfect with added scents. You can use a stove top simmer of potpourri like this one, or you can use an essential oil diffuser like I do. I use different scents throughout the year so it’s always exciting when winter comes because it’s the time of year for warm, spicy wintry scents like cinnamon, or fir, or vanilla.

Cook some comfort food.

Since I love to cook, another thing I love about winter is all the amazing winter foods. A hearty soup just isn’t very enjoyable in the heat of summer. We love to make chili, or a loaded potato soup, or some beef stew.

We pair it with some homemade bread and it makes for a pretty enjoyable dinner. I’d like to say that food can pretty much make ANY season enjoyable, am I right?

comfort food

That bread above had chocolate in it.  CHOCOLATE!  How can you hate winter when you are eating bread with chocolate in it?  You can’t. case closed.

Enjoy your favorite hot beverages.

There was a time in my life I didn’t enjoy hot beverages. At some point something changed and I swear my life became 10 times better. 🙂 In winter I adore sitting under a blanket, with my candles and diffuser going, my twinkling lights on, soft music playing, and a hot mug of tea, coffee, or hot cocoa in my hand.

If you don’t like being outside in the winter, bring a travel mug full of your favorite beverage. Seriously, it will make whatever you are doing a perfect moment. The other day we took our kids to the Christmas parade. My husband and I do not love parades, but the kids really wanted to go and we missed last year’s parade, so we decided to make it happen. My husband had one condition on going – he had to have a hot coffee in his hand. I thought it was a great idea.

I’ll tell ya, that parade was actually enjoyable because of our hot, delicious drinks to keep us warm and happy. It’s the little things. 🙂


Winter doesn’t have to be dreaded every year. While there are some things that can make it difficult for people during the winter season (road conditions, icy steps for people who struggle to get around, and taking an eternity to get small kids in and out of the car by putting on the layers and then taking off the layers at every stop) there is beauty and goodness in winter – just like there is in EVERY season.

Most likely the first step to really enjoying winter is to try and think about some positive aspects about the season. Often the way we think can affect our level of happiness and it sometimes just takes an intentional shift of dialogue, internal and external, to change our thinking.

Of course, if you do start talking about winter in a positive light it does mean you’ll be the odd man out, but speaking from experience, it’s not as bad as it seems. And while everyone is complaining about winter you’ll be smiling and enjoying yourself.

At least until the end of February when you’ve absolutely had enough…. 🙂

snow on the farm

4 thoughts on “How to learn to love winter – or at the very least, tolerate it”

  1. Smiling in the South! We usually get one snow a year that is gone in a day. Hubby and I grew up in Florida and are now two states north which is probably as far as our wimpy selves can go! Is that your house in the pictures?

    (You are so right about dressing for the cold. It took me a long time to know that I needed layers even in the south. My parents in Florida wear shorts year round and freeze in the winter.)

    1. That is actually a picture of our old, broken down barn on our property – but it would totally make a super cute house. 🙂 I’ve been to Florida only once and it was so beautiful with all the palm trees.

  2. You got to be joking. There are not enough layers when it is -30 and you must work outside in a blizzard.
    No understanding what so ever

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