so texas participated in last week's ice storms, though thankfully not to the extent that much of the rest of the country did. we, nor anyone in our area, lost power, though there were a few deaths in texas. and of course, a bajillion accidents. so, i think it was 19 deg when i took this picture. right about when the weatherman was saying avoid the roads if at all possible. i guess i should be proud of him for being committed. being office manager and all now, he likes to set a positive example. at least he waited till ten to go in!
i realize this was just a little bit of ice, but for some reason i had a blast that morning. Hannah and i got bundled up and took to the streets. which were, of course, empty. No other kids, even though there was no school in a 5 state radius, i think. i guess kids in texas don't have snowsuits, or real hats and mitts. thankfully i have enough canadian left in me that we were properly outfitted. because i know i'm a wuss, but this was actually cold. poor hannah, i kept trying to get her to play and she just kept falling because it was a giant skating rink.
for some reason, this particular cold spell and ensuing outdoor activities awakened in me a new appreciation for winter. I was transported back to when i was a little girl (I spent the first ten years of my life in Canada.) I didn't even live in an especially cold part of canada, but snowsuits came out by halloween and generally stayed until easter or so, possibly. the snow came and didn't melt all winter. this is such a foreign concept to texans (and Alabama and North Carolina and of course, Senegal; all the places i've recently lived), that it's become foreign to me as well. I decided i do like real winter, i just don't like this halfway winter. i like going outside when it's so cold you can smell it, and it takes your breath away. the complete and utter stillness of a fresh snowfall, when you wake up in the morning, is quite unlike anything else. I was overwhelmed with precious memories of winter, of snow. Of playing dogsled with my sisters and our poor little dog. My best friend and I, purposefully sticking our heads in the snow because we thought that would get us more hot chocolate. Of wearing our boots to church then changing into our dress shoes, where coats and boots are lined up in the hallway. of ice skating all the time, either on a community rink, outdoors normally, on a pond, or on a river or canal. once (on vacation in california, actually) we built huge forts and even tunnels of snow. of sliding and snow angels and igloos. of mitt drying racks over the floor vents. and of course the skiing. my brave, committed, patient parents first strapped skis to my little legs at 2 yrs old. i'm sure it took a few years to catch on. the only sport i've ever been decent at! i love skiing with a passion. and the memories i have of my family skiing are absolutely positively priceless. and then, of spring. of finally shedding your eskimo layers. of running around jumping in melting snow. of feeling sun on your skin. I now sleep in fleece pajamas, under a regular comforter and a hudson bay blanket (only a privileged few know what that is) in our 70 degree house. i need a jacket if it gets below 70. what happened to that little girl who went from the hot tub to the snow bank in one leap, i'm not sure. but at least i have the memories. and they are as real as the wetness of a snowflake on my tongue.