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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

how to survive 101

Fresh snow on the mountains on Sept 1st!!!!

So with Fall right on the verge of exploding (and then disappearing), there is no way for my mind not to wander down that road of... "oh no, here comes winter".
For me, winter symbolizes many things, some good and pleasant, while other parts of it are long, hard and relentless. I do enjoy the quiet, introspective, homey feelings of winter, but there are also the long stretches of not getting into town, the scary and often dangerous 5 hrs drive that I do (by myself with the kids), and the stretches of extreme cold where it gets hard to go outside.
Living up here in the far North has it's unique challenges. Many of them I have written about here. I try not to dwell, or throw a pity party for myself, but somedays I get little reminders that I do feel isolated and that life can be a little more difficult here in this remote community. At the same time, we have had such amazing experiences here, experiences that have changed us for the better. We choose to focus on these things more so.
We are starting to look ahead here. This will be out last winter up in the Yukon (we're pretty sure - of course nothing is ever 100% guaranteed), and this will also be our 5th winter here, and so with all of these past winters under our belt, I feel like I am somewhat seasoned at this whole winter thing.
And so I thought it would be a neat idea (if not but just for myself to look back on some day) on the things that I do and count on to help me get through isolated community living.

1. My walks. My walks give me a moment to myself, exercise and a change of scenery. Even though Noah is a giant 5 year old now, I still put him and Katia into our double Chariot stroller to go on one or two walks a day. Yes, I should make them walk (I usually get them out of it for part of the walk), but for me, the Chariot allows me to go for a walk anytime I want/need to and get out of the house (sooo important).
2. Coffee. This may seem silly, but I enjoy good coffee made in my french press. I sometimes add a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg to the coffee grounds to make it taste extra good. Coffee is my treat and reminds me of being in a cafe (something I enjoy doing in town).
3. Having a plan.
My day can easily turn sour if I feel like I have no motivation to do anything. Having a plan, even if it is simple as:  breakfast, get dressed, do homeschool, go for a walk ect, can help me to feel like I have accomplished something.
4. Make plans, hold/host get togethers, go to events, be involved. Staying home and being a hermit is not good for the spirit, so I make the effort to go to community events, host girl's nights and I volunteer a lot. It keeps me busy. Also, if I don't like something or want to see something happen in the community, I just do it and make sure it happens.
5. Looking ahead. It's nice to know that in 2 weeks I will be going into Whitehorse to do some photography work. It's also nice to know that in 4 weeks, we will be going home to Ottawa for a visit. It's good to have these trips to look forward to. Something to have, for when the days feel long or lonely. 
So here's to one more winter of cozying up and ploughing through. I know someday I will look back on these years with such fondness and a yearning for these quiet, simple days.

1 comment:

Oh goody....I love comments!