Since I’ve had a few people ask me questions about the inspiration behind I Need You for Christmas, I’ve put together links to some of the posts I’ve done. And a pronunciation guide. 😉
Be aware that the pronunciation of some of the Canadian names such as Iqaluit and Nunavut vary even amongst us. So you’ll find multiple pronunciations — basically do what I learned in nursing school. If a name or word trips you up, say it as quick as you can and you’ll usually get it right 😀
Toque — pronounced too’-k, like 2 followed by a ck sound. It’s a knitted cap; Texans call them toboggans. They’re not normally worn over the face the way my son is wearing it here — he’s deliberately pulled it down to stay anonymous. 😉
Nunavut — around here we say “noon-a-vut”. I’ve also heard it pronounced “none-of-it” 😉 Nunavut is Canada’s third territory. It was created in 1999 when they recently divided the North West Territories into two parts. You can read more about it here.
Iqaluit — is the capital city of Nunavut. (You may know it better by its old name of Frobisher Bay.) Pronounced Ee-ka-lew-it or Ih-kwal-you-eet, or any variation from there. You can learn more about how Frobisher discovered it in 1576, and how it gained more prominence in 1955 here.
Inukshuk – pronounced in-ook′ (like in book)-shook (like in shook) — stones piled to form a figure. Commonly thought nowadays to mean “I was here”. Every single one looks different based upon the formation and type of stones used.
For visuals, visit my Pinterest page that shows some pictures from the various areas.
Poutine — pronounced around these parts as “pooh-teen”, though they say it differently in Quebec. A dish consisting of French fries, curd cheese, and gravy. Often enhanced with items such as pulled pork. Yes, it looks messy, but trust me, it’s delicious!
Loonie or Toonie — in I Need You for Christmas, Ryan offers to give Meg the “loonie tour.” Later they go to a Christmas party where there’s a “toonie toss”. They’re references to our money — you see we only have $1 and $2 coins these days. The $1 coin is called the loonie because it has a loon engraved on one side, and the $2 coin is called the toonie because, well, it’s worth two bucks and toonie rhymes with loonie. So Ryan’s loonie tour? Is a cheap tour. (The photo compares the loonie (on the bottom) and the toonie (on the top) to the American quarter (on the right) and nickel (on the left))
Want to know more about the inspiration behind I Need You for Christmas, some of the terms and the area? check out these blog posts:
“Highland Inspiration” and “Behind the scenes of Porter’s Mill” on my own site, or my interviews at Love of Romance, Full Moon Dreaming, and Coffee Time Romance.
You should also visit Stilettos on the Tundra, a friend whose time in Nunavut inspired me to write a character from there.
Feel free to leave a comment if you have any other questions…