Everyone talks about the winters in Chicago and understandably! They never fail to bring below freezing temperatures and lots of snow. Even a "mild" winter here will have 2 feet of snow and single digits at some point.
I moved to Chicago at the end of June. We were coming from Tennessee where June can start to hit 90 degrees and the humidity is like being underwater so we were very pleased to be able to have our windows open as we moved into our temporary apartment. As I met the people in my office and around the apartment complex, i often expressed my concern coming from a place that could go YEARS without snow and lucky to get maybe an inch (if there was any) to a place with stories of snow levels half way up the front door! All of their responses were almost exactly the same... "But the summers are amazing!".
I thought they were just trying to make me feel better, especially since we ended up experiencing a freaking record breaking POLAR VORTEX our first winter here!! However, then we started to notice that at the very peak of summer we may get about 2 weeks of uncomfortably hot weather with high humidity but then it goes right back to warm and breezy for the rest of summer.
The funny thing is that with these mild temperatures in the summer, you would think it would slowly climb up and slowing come down making a lovely bookend of Spring and Fall but nope. Instead, it is 30s-40s until late May and then BAM it is suddenly 70s-80s. It will stay this way until early November and then suddenly it is 30s until about January when it drops to 10s-20s. I guess if you want to count 30s and 40s as Spring and Fall then an argument could be made but I just don't see it. We were literally walking the dog with puff jackets and beanie last week and wearing shorts and t-shirts this week. Someone told me the joke that "Chicago has 2 seasons... Winter and July 4th" and while it isn't that bad, it is definitely true that they only have 2 seasons!
So, as we come up on our 3 year anniversary here, I have to agree - the summers are absolutely amazing here. Also, honestly, the winters aren't as bad as I expected. The City/Villages know how to handle them and once you get the appropriate clothes then it is barely an inconvenience. That was actually the advice that everyone also gave us... "As long as you dress appropriately then you'll be fine!" Once again, so true! We once went to an outdoor zoo event where we had to walk 2 miles, in the snow at night just to get there! You just can't let the weather get in the way of adventures or else you won't do anything for 6 months out of the year. (Which i guess doesn't sound that crazy after being stuck in our houses for over a year due to the pandemic... ugh) James and I still joke about that if one of us says we are cold in the winter. We can usually point out how we just aren't "dressed appropriately". The hardest part of winter is just the lack of sunshine so the only advice i'd add is to load up on the Vitamin D!
As I type this, I'm sitting on my back patio as the sun goes down. It says it is 81 degrees but without the humidity and with the very slight breeze, i would have guessed it was about 60. In fact, i'm even wearing a light pullover and i'm comfortable. I know I won't live in Chicago forever and I have a feeling that it will be really hard to find a place with better summer weather. <3
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