I love this time of year. Not as much as I love summer (obviously)… but the lead up to Christmas is a close second. I love the lights, the decorations, the music, the food… pretty much everything except for the weather. I’m one of the very few snow haters in the world. That’s right you heard me… I hate snow. I give it a pass on Christmas day (because that is sort of magical) and when I’m skiing (because it’s kind of essential) but when I’m at home or travelling, snow just makes life more difficult. Sure, it’s pretty but it comes with a price that I have unwillingly paid time and time again. Here are just a few recent examples:
(1) Family vehicle stuck in snow bank and gets hit by a car √
(2) Sprained finger while falling down steep and icy driveway √
(3) Week of school cancelled with increased workload and reduced time to do it √
(4) Flight delays / cancellations √
(5) Falling in extremely wet snow and forced to go to work with soaking wet pants √
I could go on and on but you get the idea. Snow and I just don’t get along very well. So when I woke up on my recent trip to Victoria to hear that the city had just received a blanket of fresh snow… I was less than thrilled.
Fortunately, the snow mostly melted right away (I love the West Coast!) and my friend Katie and I could resume our plans to get our holiday spirit on… worry free!
We started the day by finding me the perfect Ugly Christmas Sweater at The Patch Clothing store downtown. I am so stoked to wear it every chance I get this season. It’s perfectly oversized with a gigantic scene of a bear riding a sleigh and other ridiculous stuff. Shopping Win!
Our next stop was the Fairmont Empress Hotel’s Festival of Trees. The Edwardian, château-style hotel is one of the most famous sights in the city and quite pricey as well. But, you don’t need to be a paying guest to enjoy the Victorian decor, or in our case, the fantastic display of Christmas trees benefiting the BC Children’s Hospital. There were so many great themes and interesting choices that it was quite the challenge to narrow it down to our favourites. There was even an interactive Operation themed tree that would buzz and light up.
Just before the sun went down, we briefly braved the cold temperatures to enjoy the blissful golden hour sun, squeezing in a few pictures of the inner harbour before running for hot beverages. My inability to stay outside for longer than 20 minute increments during the day should have warned me that I was going to struggle with the Island Farms Parade of Lights that evening… but we foolishly decided to go anyway. I’m sure you can see where this is going. In the pursuit of festive fun I nearly gave myself frostbite just to see some vehicles covered in lights. Okay, I’m exaggerating but I definitely begged to just stand in the 7-eleven at one point. I’m a baby.