As I have gotten older, my memories seem to mush together more and more. Some things that happened fifteen years ago seem pretty recent, but I can’t remember what I had for breakfast today. Did I have breakfast today?
I also tend to project my own memories on other people who are close to me. If I carry a memory of something that happened 20 years ago, my subconscious tells me that my children who are much younger than that surely know about it, too. I know that doesn’t make sense, I’m just being honest about the scrambled up thing that most people call Mom Brain.
It’s because of this fantastic cerebral experience that I had a hard time understanding why my children went crazy when they found out the word snow was in the forecast. Although I haven’t spent a lot of time with snow, I’ve spent enough that I know it’s cold, and beautiful, and cold, and wet, and cold, and potentially hazardous, and cold.
I’m not saying that I have a problem with cold, I’m just saying Florida had its perks.
Anyway, it took about two days of frantically excited children awaiting the possibility of snow before I realized that the kids really had no experience with snow. Sure, Ava and Israel saw a snow flurry on Christmas in south Georgia in 2010…the flurry was so light it was impossible for me to get a picture that proved that it was “snowing!” And there was some kind of sleet or ice in Tallahassee in January of 2014 that shut the city down…at one point I sent the kids to find as much ice as they possibly could so I could get a picture…and they brought me about 4 ice granules on a leaf.
So, for all practical purposes, we are going to say that they had not experienced Snow.
As a result, when Winter Storm Helen made her way to northwest Georgia Friday evening, our kids were live wires. I would have shipped them off to burn off some excitement elsewhere, but we weren’t allowed to drive.
As a side note, I’m convinced that there has to be one person in this area that puts snow tires on their vehicle every winter. The one day a year the roads get icy, he must ride down all the desolate roads saying, “Ha! They laughed at me and said I would never need them. But look at me now!!!”
Anyway, we warned the kids that the snow was not predicted to come until long after they were in bed. We had a rainy, cold day of pre-snow jitters on Friday while the temperature hovered around thirty-four degrees. Around the time it started to get dark, we finally convinced the kids to stop looking for snow out the window.
Around 7:00, though, Ava declared, “IT’S SNOWING! IT’S SNOWING! THERE’S WHITE FLUFFY STUFF COMING FROM THE SKY! IT’S REALLY DOING IT!” I was ready to let her know that it was not actually snowing (the snow was not supposed to come until midnight,) but, lo and behold, God had answered the prayers of the Linker children, and there actually was white fluffy stuff coming from the sky!
Since it was dark, the kids were confined to playing in the snow on the back porch, but considering the low standards they had about snow I mentioned earlier, they thought it was the best thing in the world!
After maybe half an hour, the snow turned to sleet and we took the opportunity to shuffle the kids into bed, assuring them that it was going to stay cold all weekend and they would have much more fun in the snow when they could see it.
And here’s one of God’s little undeserved blessings. From the evidence we saw the next morning, it looks like the rest of our winter precipitation was probably sleet. There was a lot of ice, but not a lot of snow. So the fact that the little snow we got came earlier than forecasted so the kids were awake to see it? That did not go unnoticed!
But ice is still fun for Floridian kids with low standards!
Our undecorated Christmas tree was still sitting in its stand on the porch. I asked Josh to sit it in the yard Friday night. Not gonna lie, I was hoping snow would accumulate on it and we could go ahead and get our 2017 Christmas card picture in front of it. (Before you laugh at me, let me remind you that making the most of every opportunity is biblical!)
Well, the wind didn’t let the tree stay standing, and of course it wasn’t covered in snow, but it did make for some cool ice detail shots!
Arrow slept in longer than everyone else, so we made the rookie parenting mistake of bringing him out into the cold without first having breakfast. Just a little word of explanation of pictures to come.
Sledding time! And yes, Josh is wearing some kind of video camera. Perhaps he will revitalize his own blog and post videos because I have no idea how.
And yes, our sleds our cardboard. Did I mention we moved from Florida?
In the end, the best place to “sled” was on the ice of the actual road – there’s a pretty good hill near our house. Josh worked out a system where he would have the kids grab his hiking stick and in that way gave them a good push to get them going down the hill. They got pretty far that way, and I hear it was a good workout for him!
Thank you, Winter Storm Helen; although I am not fond of your coldness, you are forgiven for it, for you have made the Linker children the happiest children in all the land.