It snowed last weekend – incontrovertible proof that the prayers of children are powerful things. Admittedly, it wasn’t the raging winter storm of doom that had been predicted. Although the world shut down in anticipation – extracurricular activities canceled, schools canceled, grocery stores bare – we only got a couple inches of powder over top a light glazing of ice.
My children went ballistic.
This is why I love kids so much. When they want to be excited about something, nothing – not even reality – is going to stand in the way of their joy. My kids were up at seven and clamoring to go outside by 7:23. I managed to hold them off for a bit by producing baked goods for breakfast, but by 9 o’clock they were climbing the walls, so we headed out.
Almost. Before one can launch oneself into a snow-filled day of fun, one must first don the appropriate apparel and Lord Have Mercy. Getting four humans suited up for winter playtime is a task the likes of which is usually undertaken by guys named Hercules.
One of my daughters had a total meltdown over her snow pants. They were – wait for it – black. Yes, black. Oh sweet baby Jesus, the horror. She would be an object of ridicule and scorn! A snow day pariah! Destined to be alone, friendless, shunned by her pink-pant-wearing comrades!
Suck it up, buttercup. This is a household of hand-me-downs.
Another child was discovered to be lacking snow boots. An oversight on my part, I admit. I had failed to pay attention to rapidly-enlarging feet and didn’t have boots in all the right sizes. Cowboy boots made an acceptable stand-in but we’re going to need to buy some real winter footwear STAT. Then there’s the issue of gloves. I swear it is easier to solve a Rubik’s Cube than it is to get a four-year-old’s fingers into a cheap pair of gloves.
But we got ourselves dressed eventually and charged out into the snow. I shoveled and whacked at the ice and cursed under my breath and vowed to move to Florida while the kids ran around the yard in frenzied laps. Pretty soon, they grabbed their brand-new sleds and headed to a neighbor’s yard blessed great sledding hill. Their delighted squeals called to me and before long, I abandoned the shovel to join them on the hill. We took turns flying down the incline on bright orange saucers, or doubling up on larger plastic toboggans.
Then it was time to defrost in front of the fire and eat lunch. Then back out again to another neighbor’s house for an introduction to snowboarding. I skipped that foray, opting instead to stay inside and bake apple crisp for a late afternoon warming snack.
We repeated our adventures the next day. More hills, more sleds, more friends. Butts were bruised, phones went flying, collisions occurred, merriment was made. After a week of battling the flu, our long, snow-filled weekend could not have come at a better time.