mycanadianfling first canadian winter

OH MY COLD!!!


Hiya!!! Merry Christmas everyone!

 

Our First Canadian Winter

first canadian winter

I’ve been AWOL for a couple of weeks, I know. Well, that’s because I have been very busy defrosting my frozen fingers! Lmao! Honestly, though, the weather has been real here. It has been snowing almost non-stop throughout this month of December, and the temperature has averaged -10C or less for the month.

 

Personally, I have struggled at times with the weather. I have whined and complained about the weather more times than I can remember whining about anything before now. The snow was cool at first, but now I can’t wait for it to be gone already. And our first Canadian winter is only just getting started. Lord help us!

 

This is not a pity post though. I am writing this for my “December 2018” self. You see, I know that the first Canadian winter can be tough but it certainly gets easier to deal with and manage, once one gets used to it.

 

For those of you who have asked about the weather here in Ottawa, I have been made aware that Ottawa is definitely colder than Toronto. However, though Canada, in general, is a very cold country, the people here have the warmest hearts! Throughout this time, we have met such nice people here. This kind of makes up for the freezing weather IMO 🙂

 

UBER Advice

first canadian winter

We went to the airport last week to pick up our last pieces of stuff which we had shipped from Nigeria. We took an Uber there and, boy, was that a blessing! The Uber driver was a friendly Tunisian elderly man who gave us some good advice. He told us to make sure we “hold on to our kids very tightly” as they integrated into this new environment.

 

He shared with us stories of his friends who had “lost” their kids after they relocated to Canada. One particularly troubling story he told us was about a family who had lost their kids because one of their kids told his teacher in school that his father had threatened to kill him. We could tell that he was measuring his words but also speaking from a deeply personal place, so we listened very carefully.

 

He explained that, of course, no father wanted to kill his son. However, this was a common phrase which parents (especially African parents) use to instil discipline in their kids. As a Nigerian, I definitely could relate to that. He advised that we learn to strike the right balance of discipline while adhering to the Child Protection laws here.

 

 

Side Notes

For those of you who are landing soon, make sure that you have with you a list of items (personal effects and food items) that you are bringing into Canada, as well as a list of items that you will be bringing into Canada after your first landing. This applies if you intend to ship or cargo more stuff after you arrive.


Once you show this to the immigration officer during your landing, you will be given a Form B4 from customs at the airport which exempts you from tax on your personal effects that you will bring in afterwards. In any case, they typically ask you at the airport if you intend to ship more stuff in. If you do, please say yes and get the Form B4.

 

In our bag of goodies from Nigeria, we had some African food including Ijebu garri (dried cassava flakes) and roasted groundnuts. Yours truly had it for dinner two days in a row! On the second day, my 3-year-old son and I both ate it together. I asked him what he was eating, and he called garri, granola! I was mortified! Strike One!

 

Then when I tried to teach him what it was called, he pronounced it like he was calling the English name, “Gary”. Strike Two! Someone needs a trip to Nigeria asap. Lmao! We eat a lot of Nigerian food at home though. But he refers to everything as “semoo”. Lol. I guess we need to start teaching him that there is semolina, fufu, eba, pounded yam etc.

 

 

Wrapping It All Up

Anyway, tomorrow is Christmas! Wow! The year has flown by and I cannot believe it has come to an end already.

 

The end of the year is the absolute best time to reflect and be grateful. In the true spirit of Christmas, I would like to extend my love to everyone. I am deeply grateful for all of you guys, my readers, family and friends who continue to support me in my journey. I could not have done it without you guys and for that, I am grateful.

 

I am super stoked for the New Year. God has been super faithful to us this year and we are very grateful to Him. We are also very expectant for the New Year. He has given us a taste of the greater things He has in store for us in 2018 and we will be dancing into 2018 in our household with gladness, gratitude and eager anticipation!

 

Merry Christmas once again to you all, and here’s wishing you a prosperous 2018 filled with God’s goodness and grace, the best health and abundant love!

 

Lots of Love and Christmas Cheer,

 

Mrs O

21 thoughts on “OH MY COLD!!!

  1. Hello Mrs O,

    Don’t worry you’ll get used to the cold,lol. I really love your blog and you write so well. I’m thinking of starting the immigration process,but haven’t created an express entry profile yet. I would like to know if I can go ahead and create a profile even if I don’t have the POF. Can I just create the profile and apply for jobs in canada?

    1. Thanks Zee. I would advise that you at least have most of the POF prior to creating a profile. Well, I should start by asking if you have done your WES evaluation and IELTS. That is really the first step in this process.

      Finding a job in Canada without PR is quite difficult but not impossible. The easiest path would be to complete your WES and IELTS (or other approved English Language proficiency test), then create your EE profile. If your CRS score is high enough, you should receive your ITA in the next draw. You would then have 90 days to submit your PR application. It is at this time that you would be required to show POF.

      Once you land, you can then search for job opportunities and apply.

      All the best!

  2. Hey Mrs. O ! Thanks for sharing your experiences with us. I will be landing soon would really appreciate if you can share a template of the accompanying list of goods with us. Thanks !

    1. Hi Fawad,

      I didn’t use anything formal. I literally just listed all the items but divided them into categories i.e.

      Food Items
      1. Dried Cassava Flakes
      2. Dried Cocoyam Flour

      Hope this helps.

      Mrs O

  3. Good day Mrs O,
    I have been following your blog albeit recently.
    Kindly let me have your email address Incase I need assistance/questions during my application.
    WES :done
    IELTS: CLB 9
    POF: Building it
    Waiting for my wife’s ielts result.
    Thanks in advance.

  4. Finally Mrs O! Been waiting … LORL @ “unfreezing your frozen fingers and your son’s changing accent”. Good to know that you are coping with the cold. It gives me hope because the temps I see are terrifying.

    Compliments of the season

  5. Hello Mrs.O, guess what I’ve been doing? Finding my feet in Canada!

    My family and I landed on the 29th of December and spent 5 days in an Airbnb apartment in Mississauga because we wanted to visit family in Oakville and explore Toronto. We did the former but couldn’t do the latter because of snow and the cold.

    We arrived our planned place of abode yesterday, which is Ottawa. From the little we have seen, Ottawa is such a beautiful little city but I guess we can’t say much until we move around and maybe when the summer arrives. We also heard that the bus system is pretty good too.

    I’ll be contacting you whenever I need more information.

    Thanks for the information you’ve shared so far.

    1. Awwwwwww!!! Welcome home! Thank God for journey mercies. So nice to hear that you have had a nice time so far. I hear Mississauga and Oakville (the latter especially) are such lovely cities.

      It has been freezing and snowing here in Ottawa, but it does look very beautiful all the same. Oh yes! You and me both can’t wait for summer to come! Tbh, I am just counting down to March, by which time we can say “the worst is over” and then to April which has much better weather. At least then, I can continue my long walks which I miss so much 🙁

      Well, all the best with settling in. Please keep us posted.

      1. Thanks Mrs O.

        Please I need your assistance.

        I recall that you put your son in a pre-school. Pls how much did you pay and did you get a subsidy from the government? If Yes, how did you go about it?

        We have 2 pre-schoolers and will he starting work soon but concerned about the price for pre-schools in Ottawa.

        Your advise will be highly appreciated.

        1. Hey Hey!

          Well, it was not really a pre-school. More like “Mummy and Me” pre-school activities. They were organised by the local community centre and ran from about 9am to 1pm daily. We did not get government subsidy for this.

          Full time pre-school is quite different and yes, subsidies exist for low-income earners. The form is available online and is quite straightforward. You would need to have identified a couple of pre-schools though. My friend told me that it is easier if you know the school you want them to attend, then you can go there and they will actually help you fill out your application. This sounds like an awesome alternative to trying to crack the form all by yourself. Lol.

          You also need to either be looking for work (you need to be able to show proof of your job search), be enrolled in a full-time course/program, or be employed or self-employed to qualify.

  6. That advice about holding one’s children close…hmmm…I keep wondering if one’s children will change etc…but then charity begins at home and one would have to work extra on ensuring a tight bond.

    1. Hi Mrs DA,

      Welcome to my blog. I agree with you. Charity does begin at home and yes, finding the right balance between being a parent and your children’s best friend is super important. God help us and give us the grace to parent our kids, in whatever society we find ourselves.

  7. Hello Mrs O,

    Very lovely write up. Please what logistics company did you use in moving the additional goods from Nigeria to Canada?

  8. Hello Mrs O, nice job you are doing with your blog. I will be coming as a PhD student in September to Ottawa. I will be coming with my 4 children of school age so I need to tidy up a whole lot of stuff before landing like location to live.
    I will be attending University of Ottawa, pls which neighbourhood is calm and relatively affordable with good houses( pls not apartment, they are all boys so outside play space is necessary for my sanity). I don’t mind a 20mins commute to school. I need this information so I can reach out to schools in that district as they will all be needing study permits.
    Chai, what a loooong comment, pardon me. I am tired of searching endlessly on the internet.
    Gracia.

    1. Hi Margaret,

      Hmmm, this is a tough question. House hunting is never easy. I would advise that you start by finding schools in Ottawa that you would like your kids to attend using Fraser Institute. Once you have selected 2 top schools that you like, go on Kijiji.ca and find houses in that area. Generally, some/most parts of Kanata, Barrhaven, Nepean have good schools, are not too expensive and are great areas for families with kids. Kanata and Barrhaven would require that you own a car on Day 1 though. We liked Kanata because majority of the schools there were highly ranked.

      House hunting can be a major chore! 4 months in and we still haven’t gotten the hang of looking for a home!

      All the best and let us know what you eventually decide.

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