Monday, January 17, 2011

Sometimes it just takes a snow day

I rolled my eyes when I heard it was coming. I mean, the kids had only been back in school for two days. They are my darlings, and I love them very much, but two days!

I was in denial, at first, but decided I'd better be prepared, so I did what every other citizen in the county did. I went out and bought -- say it with me -- milk and bread. I couldn't help but wonder if it were the end of the world, would we all run out to Publix for a gallon and a loaf. I can hear it now, "There's a meteor about to strike the Earth ..."

"Honey, quick, run out and buy two gallons of 2 percent and two loaves of Sunbeam!" Which is pretty much how I sounded the minute I heard sleet hit the roof on Sunday night.

"But you just bought some yesterday," my husband said.

"I know, but the weatherman is predicting days of snow and ice. I think we need more!" I insisted, forgetting the fact that I don't even drink milk and more than often our bread turns stale before we can eat it.

My husband obliged, caring less about the food, and more about the adventure. He came back and reported that the grocery employee told him we had bought the last gallon of milk in the county. How he knew this, I know not; but I sure was glad I made my husband go to the store.

Anyway, I knew from our recent snow experience that I would need it to make snow ice cream. My son and I finally perfected the recipe once I learned to use powdered

I know people up North make fun of us, but give us a few more snow days, and we'll have it all figured out. We may be helpless without bread and milk; but when it comes to sledding, we are resourceful. I saw people sledding on cookie sheets, skateboards with the wheels removed, and even a pond liner.

And, it wasn't long before I found myself joining them, just to prove to my kids that I can (or can't). At one point -- as we were sledding down the road in a plastic sled that I bought at Goodwill several summers ago, the one that everyone laughed at me for buying -- I heard my son behind me, yelling, "We're all going to die!" I responded by saying, "At least we have bread and milk!"

He didn't get my joke.

The best part of "the day I dreaded so much" turned out to be my neighbors. I don't know why it takes the coldest, most miserable day of the year to bring everyone outdoors, but it just does. We ended up running into some long-lost friends (It turns out that their son and his young family are our neighbors -- yeah, that made me feel old-ish). Their grandchildren were sledding up and down the hill on a real sled.

"We've had this in our attic for 25 years. It's the first opportunity we've had to use it!"

So, by the time this column publishes, I'm sure I'll be over this pretty mess, but, today, I'm glad I got to meet our new neighbors and watch them use their sled for the first time.

And, amazingly, without being able to run to and fro, I found time to play with my kids, write two articles and a column, watch four movies (thanks, Netflix!), do my exercise DVD (must my family laugh every single time I do it?), chat with some friends and neighbors and simply enjoy life for a while. Sometimes it just takes a snow day, and I am certainly grateful for this one -- despite the wet clothes!

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