From the editor

I enjoyed winters in Ottawa long before I became a resident.

My dad and my uncle Andy spent their early adult years here, attending the University of Ottawa and Carleton University respectively. My parents were married here in 1977. After they moved away and I was born, Mom and Pop returned to Ottawa a couple of times a year with their young family to visit friends. We’d hit up Winterlude and I have photos of my brother and me on the Rideau Canal Skateway and in warmer weather, standing dutifully in front of rows of tulips and snarling alongside the T-rexes at the Museum of Nature (you likely know which ones I’m talking about).

Needless to say, many of my magical childhood memories were made from moments I spent here. Maybe that’s why this issue—with its theme, Winter wonderland: The magic of the capital—is so meaningful to me, as I hope it will be for many of you.

Our columnists embraced our theme, and shared their own takes on the winter months. To The Happiness Formula’s Kita Szpak, winter means precious reunions that seemingly happen around this time of year (and maybe, that’s why we love the holidays so much). Check out “Holiday homecoming.” Dad’s Dispatch writer Jon Willing writes about that cumbersome—yet essential—cold-weather garment, snow pants, while Memoirs of a New Dad’s Chris Hunt shares his discovery of a different (non-winter-related) chill that can take over a household.

Speaking of magic, if you’re a person of a certain age, you’ll likely recognize the gentleman and his puppet friends on our cover. Perhaps he’s the reason why you picked up this magazine. “Mr. Dressup: The Magic of Make-Believe” premiered on Amazon Prime this fall, and in celebration of the documentary film, we’re sharing the instructions for one of the TV personality’s classic crafts: a tickle trunk.

We also have a heartwarming tale that embodies the true meaning of holiday spirit. Ava James Sidoli is the teen behind Only Takes One, a local grassroots organization which has raised money and collected gifts for the city’s less fortunate. Sheryl Bennett-Wilson’s story is a part of our “Families with a cause” occasional series.

Bennett-Wilson also authored our feature on loneliness. Did you know that the holiday season can be the least joyful for many people of all ages and stages? That in itself is not magical, but do you know what is? Coming together to help family, friends and neighbours through what may be a difficult time of year.

From our Parenting Times Magazine family to yours, we wish you a peaceful and restful season.


Editor Tracey Tong and her family: husband Kyle, and daughters Millie, left, and Ellie. Photo Credit Anastasia Krachkovskaya

Editor Tracey Tong and her family: husband Kyle, and daughters Millie, left, and Ellie. Photo Credit Anastasia Krachkovskaya