This blog went from my oldest, above, learning how to print his name, to today where he’s got his license and preparing for university next year! This school year is a big one. Even though it seems like the construction-paper hats and tassels of kindergarten graduation happened just a “few” years ago, we have two graduates in the house this spring. My oldest, just over 3-years-old when this blog started, is graduating high school and my middle-child is graduating grade 8 (grade 8 grads weren’t a thing for me growing up so I’m still trying to understand that one). It’s a year of change, following years unlike any other, and it means we all have to be a little more focused and intentional in our actions – which this year especially lead to big things down the road.
These past 2 years (we’re almost at that point where the word Covid came into our lives 2 years ago) have been a metamorphosis in many ways. I, myself, made some big changes in my life – views changed, priorities changed, and I made a shift to change the person I was to the person I want to be for my family – deep stuff right? The point is, I’m learning more about how individual actions affect a greater community, and how I can help a larger community beyond the walls of my own household.
With ICUs in Saskatchewan stretched to capacity, it really hit me one day while driving my kids to a store on the other side of the city. I realized that, should a car accident happen and we needed ICU care, we would be in a hospital with full ICU beds, and people needing critical care more than ever.
It scared me.
It made me hyper-focused on the road around me and the other drivers.
I had to remind myself that I could only control my own “stuff”, I unfortunately could not control the actions of others on the road. I also reminded myself that if everyone took some extra time, was as focused as I was driving that day, we’d come together as a community for the greater good of all.
It’s the little things I can control. I can ensure that I’m alert and focused when driving, that the kids aren’t distracting me, and that my vehicle is maintained, gas tank full, tires ready to hit the pavement.
According to Kal Tire, despite an overall decrease in fatalities due to motor vehicle collisions in Canada in the last 5-10 years, crashes in Canada continue and are usually related to one or more of the following factors:
- Human error
- Environmental conditions
- Vehicle issues
Tire blowouts, severe tire wear and incorrect tire pressure, are factors that increase risk. Those risks fall into the category of things I can control. So, last month I made my twice-yearly visit to Kal Tire to do the fall switch to my winter tires. Of course, safety outside of a vehicle and indoors is a concern we have right now too, so I was very happy to see how considerate and health-conscious the local Kal Tire location here in Regina was while I waited.
The waiting area has changed, it’s very well spaced out, and the chairs are cleaned after every customer has visited meaning at a quick glance you can see if the chair is ready for you or not. But check this out, even keys are well protected from germs!
It’s the little things – big things really – that matter to me right now. It’s about each of us taking that little extra time, courtesy, for the greater good.
You can install winter tires as soon as the temperature is consistently +7 degrees or below. Typically in Saskatchewan that’s October but – because everything is weird right now so why not – we’ve had a warmer than usual fall so I suspect many of us Saskatchewanians may not have booked that appointment yet. My suggestion – get that scheduled now so that you can beat the rush when the first “snowfall that sticks” happens.
Other things you can do, courtesy of Kal Tire, to ensure your car is ready to hit the road this winter:
Life isn’t slowing down anytime soon, and there’s a lot of good things ahead even if we feel like we’re stuck in a never-ending cycle of intense news, health and safety protocols and learning more about science and epidemiology that we never thought we would. I think we’re on a good path now in Sask to get to a better place, a better winter than last (we may hit the road and travel to Calgary to be with family this holiday season, something I missed so much last year). What we can do now is prepare for all those good things, while ensuring that we’re checking in and taking care of those around us. I drive safely for my precious cargo in the vehicle with me, but also for everyone else on the road. We’re Saskatchewanians, we’ve endured a lot, but we persevere and plough through. It’s who we are.
This is a post in partnership with Kal Tire.
Keeping the gas tank half full is a good tip.
Oh man. This terrifies me. We are 4 years out from teenage drivers. Winter tires definitely make a big difference.
Driving is definitely a big responsibility and good tires are so needed
Great reminders and some excellent tips. I need to get my snow tires on as we had our first snow this week.
Great tips, I always carry a glass/seatbelt cutter tool while driving.
Hubby got our truck winter ready last weekend. Good tips here.
great winter tires are a must!
There are some great tips here, I was a nervous wreck when my daughters started to drive!
My daughter can get her learners in 3 years. I am excited and nervous as well. Such a huge responsibility that I have to prepare her for.
Great tips. First snow fall here last night. Must get those tires on.
Thanks for all the helpful hints. I am having a check up this coming week.
great tips, winter tires are so important
lots of great tips there!! my winter tires are on and i am ready….even so, I still am not a winter person!!
I’ve received great service from Kal Tire. I drove alone a lot and having tires I can trust is important.
These are excellent tips for driving safely!
It’s very important to have snow tires and make sure to change them over before the snow lands
Some great tips to follow for sure.
Great ideas everyone one should carry a glass/seatbelt cutter tool
I have one teen driver and one more on the way next year. We just purchased our winter tires.
I am about to have a teenage driver myself and I can remember when I drove but its so much different now with cell phones and such. I have tried for the last few years when I drove to model good behaviours and tell him what to do in certain situations but it’s very nerve wracking and I am not sure if I am even ready! At least I take comfort in winter tires and a dash cam too.
I got my winter tires on a few weeks ago after remembering that big storm in early November last year.
Got my winter tires on but definitely need to get in for an oil change. Thanks for the heads up.
It truly takes just one moment of inattention for life to change while on the road. Protect yourself and others as best you can.
Looks like my car is all set for winter! Appreciate the reminders on lists like this, to make sure I haven’t forgetten anything.
I’ve scheduled an appointment for tire changeover already. October was mild here in Ontario too.
Just got my stud winter tire own today. I could have probably wait a bit but weather so unpredictable here. Also beat the snow storm rush.
Great tips! I got stuck with summer windshield wiper fluid in early cold weather a couple of years ago, and it was so dangerous. Never again!
We had some early snow (didn’t stick) and then a month of above normal temps. This weekend, it got much cooler (only -12 but when it’s been around 0 for weeks, it was a bit of a shock!). The early snow definitely got us thinking about winter tires (they are a must in the North!).
These are such great tips! I agree…I always get scared of getting stuck so I always make sure I’m ready for any emergency. With four kids I would have for something to happen and not be prepared.
Driving and maintaining a vehicle is underestimated by many. It is so important to the safety of yourself and others.
Great tips, winter tires are a must.
I never think to check our spare tires. I am definitely going to put that on my fall to-do list (ok, my hubby’s fall to-do list!).
Great tips, we got our winter tires on!
Winter tires make a huge difference for sure. Winter is just about here. Great post and lots of great advice. I too, drive safely for my family, and everyone else around me on the road.
Awesome tips for winter driving
Good winter tires and being prepared ahead of time so import! Very goo tips and information!
good reminders! Got my snow tires on and ready to go!!
We keep extra clothes in the car during the winter.
I am so happy winter tires are becoming more of a thing in Ontario!
I’ll never forget everyone stuck in the snow, I was cruising through everything in my cavalier.
My then boyfriend (now husband) gifted my really good winter tires for my birthday. It made me realize how important they are for our Canadian winters!
As a fellow prairie gal who has lived through her share of winter storms – this is SO true! Tires make a WORLD of a difference!
Great tips for drivers & passengers of which I am a dedicated passenger . I wish I had my license but really some people should stick to passenger seat. I am one of those lol. Now give me forty acres off road and a GTO and all bets are off.
That’s huge! Two graduations in one year, congratulations!
The thought of my daughter driving is scary, but these are great tips
3.5 years until my boy gets his learners. It is a big responsibility and good winter tires are important.
Topping up all the fluids is good advice
Winter tires are the bare minimum one should do to prepare for the colder months! I completely agree its our lives and for the safety of everyone !
Purchased winter tires for the first time this year I hope its a game changer
Definitely not ready for my kids to be driving! I actually hate driving – I find it so stressful!
Having the gas tank filled and good winter tires are a must as is having some snacks and water in the vehicle
Wow! That is so true! It actually gave me chills. On a positive tonight I though all the drivers on the road were extra courteous and nice. It was a nice change from being tailgated.
Winter tires are a game changer.
Great tips. Having an emergency kit is always a must for me.
Winter tires on, scraper in car, I am ready !
We lived in a cold climate as a kid and my dad always kept a candle, matches and a blanket in his truck. The candle can provide a lot of heat in a small space when needed.