TIES Guides

Whether you’ve moved to Calgary years ago or just recently arrived, our guides can help you find the services and programs that are right for you.

Winter in Canada

Winter Drinks

Staying warm is an important part of enjoying winter, and sipping on hot drinks throughout the day is an easy way to stay warm, relax, and maybe even get in extra nutrients! You can try the following:

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Working Out Indoors

Regular physical activity not only helps keep your body healthy, it also offers a lot of benefits for your mind, your mood and your overall well-being! Many scientific studies have linked exercise with improved mental health. This is especially important during the winter, when you are more likely to be indoors and moving less.

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Healing Foods for Health All Winter

It’s especially important to eat warm, nutritious foods with vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats in the winter, since winter is the season when colds, flu, and other viruses can take hold. While you may want to take vitamin supplements, you can also protect your health by eating lots of colourful vegetables, such as spinach and sweet potatoes, and healthy proteins such as oily fish (like mackerel and salmon) or chicken.

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Making Maple Syrup Candy

Making maple syrup taffy in the snow is an old French-Canadian tradition. Here are the instructions and a video if you would like to see how it is done:

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Healthy and Delicious Winter Foods

One of the most enjoyable parts of winter is all of the good food that you can make to eat! As the weather gets colder, many Canadians start enjoying heavier, warmer foods. Fall produce such as carrots, potatoes, cabbage, beets, sweet potatoes, leeks, and pears are ready to eat in the early winter, making them more affordable than other food at this time of year. Many families will enjoy these fruits and vegetables with meat such as chicken, beef, or pork, or legumes such as lentils and chickpeas, which are high in protein and make you feel full. Some people will use more cream, butter, or milk in their cooking at this time of year as well, making food taste richer. What are some foods that you eat in cold weather in your country?

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Making Your Home Warm

While winter in Canada can sometimes be cold, snowy, icy, or windy outdoors, Canadians know that you can still have a wonderful winter if you take the time to make your indoors warm and cozy. In fact, people that live in cold places all over the world have specific words for feeling warm or cozy with your friends and family: in the Netherlands, this feeling is called gezelligheid, in Denmark, it is called hygge, and in Germany, it is called Gemütlichkeit. There is even a Japanese word, ikigai, which refers to actions that give life meaning and pleasure. If you try some of the tips below, you may discover the happiness and pleasure that can be found throughout winter in Canada.

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Outdoor Activities (Recreation for Kids and Adults)

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Increasing Your Intake of Natural Light

Canada is located far from the earth’s equator, which means that our days are very short and cold during the winter months. This causes some people to suffer from “the winter blues,” which means they experience heightened sadness, hopelessness or stress during winter. In severe cases, this is diagnosed as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a form of depression which affects your mood, sleep, appetite and energy levels.

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Local Events & Festivals

In Calgary & area, there are plenty of local festivals to choose from! Remember to dress warmly for outdoor events. Please check the organizer’s website ahead of time for exact dates, times and other details. You can also look for local events on Eventbrite, Curiocity, Calgary’s Child or Family Fun Calgary.

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Winter Holiday / Christmas Traditions

Canada is a multicultural society where many different holiday traditions are celebrated, including Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and others. In Canada, the most commonly recognized winter holiday is Christmas, a Christian tradition on December 25th commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ. You also may have heard of the tradition of Santa Claus, who is a mythical character said to bring gifts to well-behaved children on Christmas Eve. Winter holidays are focused on togetherness, generosity, and joy.

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Winter Hikes

One of the best ways to enjoy the beauty of winter, and get some exercise at the same time, is to go for a hike. A hike is like a long walk, usually in the wilderness. Since you are usually far from the city when hiking, it’s very important to consider your own safety so that you do not get lost or hurt.

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Preparing Your House & Vehicle for Winter

Preparing your house and vehicle for winter will keep you safe and save you money in the long run.

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Outdoor Activities for Exercise

There are a lot of fun winter sports and outdoor activities that can only be enjoyed in winter, so this season is a great opportunity to try them out.

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Making Your Home Cozy

There are so many ways to make your home feel welcoming and cozy throughout the winter!

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Indoor Activities

During the winter, you may be spending more time indoors with your family. This is a great opportunity to try a new hobby, game or craft.

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TIES is located on the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy comprising the Siksika, Piikani and Kanai First Nations, the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda including the Chiniki, Bearspaw and Wesley First Nations. The City of Calgary is also home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.