It's February! It's hard to believe; I feel like in some ways I was hibernating all of January; everything was bundled and huddled away. In case you didn't hear, Toronto got snow. A lot of snow. And a lot of cold. This means I wear thick socks and a big, wrapping sweater and I stay inside and drink tea and read books and watch movies and strategize my weeks so I go outside only when forced. So that's what I did, mostly. Here is what helped me pass the time in chilly January: The one forgivable thing about Toronto's cold weather is that you get really crisp, bright, sunny days. It's almost like living in a glittery ice cube. This weather is good for a quick stroll with a latte (that, if you're me, will end up spilling all over your mittens). On the topic of mittens, I was talking to a guest at the bar I work at the other day and I said something about "mittens" and he looked at me in pity and said, "no one says 'mittens' after the age of ten. Especially not pronounced so perfectly like you do. They're 'gloves' or 'mits'." Thoughts? They're mittens. That's what they are. And in the winter, all bundled up, I look like a 5'8 ten-year-old, so I can still say mittens however I want. Exhibit A: Ten-year-old's snow uniform. This is what I wear every day. Sometimes I swap the leggings for jeans. And you can see the salt rings around the toes of my boots. And the rainbow MITTENS that my BFF Katie lent me when I was leaving her house and had forgot mine and it was -25. That's a good friend. These are my new snow boots. Legit snow boots. They are cozy and warm and I don't know why I waited so long to buy real snow boots. Let me tell you, there are certain things that you shouldn't skimp on: anything you put on your face (face wash and makeup), Oreos, and, when you live in Toronto, the warmest parka you can find, and warm, clunky snow boots. I've now accepted that I am not going to be a put-together winter dweller, so I may as well be warm. We played at Lee's Palace at the very beginning of the month with First Rate People (whose Bandcamp page I happen to be listening to right now. They sound like a summer day by the lake, and Anna Horvath just released a music video for her solo project Merival and you need to listen to it. I just did, 6 times in a row). It was a BLAST. It's amazing what a great sound system will do. Not to mention 250+ people in the crowd, and your dearest friends. We (as in, Fitness Club Fiasco) are taking some time this winter to write and practice and record. I'm excited for what's in store for our wee band! I applied for University. Eep! BA in Creative Writing, here I come! Hopefully they let me in, because I don't really have a back up plan. Luckily my girlfriend Marissa reassured me as far as York is concerned, their acceptance policy generally follows "if you can hold a fork you can go to York!" so I have that going for me! Maybe you can all write a letter of recommendation for me. I had my first book club meeting. It's a little nerdy maybe. But it was awesome. I forgot to take a picture, but you can all look forward to a monthly report of our new little group. We started with my favourite book of all time, "The History of Love" by Nicole Krauss. Even though I've read this book about four or five times now, I was surprised at how fuzzy I still am on the concrete details of the story line, but it doesn't even matter. This is the loveliest book I've ever read and I hope you like it too. I made a big to-do list. There are a few things, like applying for school, that are specific tasks to check off, but bigger than that, I spent a lot of time thinking about what kind of year I wanted to have, what kind of person I want to become, what feelings and places I want to experience, what I want to value. It is a way cozier list than just "complete this, go do that". I suggest you map one out yourself! February promises an album release show for Matt Henderson's band Old English, buying some intense hiking boots and breaking them in for my upcoming trip that I'll tell you more about later, a long overdue visit from my dear friend Karla, maybe some snowboarding, taking care of business like renewing my driver's license, and of course my second instalment of book club! Happy February!