As I've said before, we have never lived in a state where all four seasons are apparent and therefore, have never had the opportunity to take the boys sledding. After suffering a two week period of the weather channel's false predictions, yesterday it finally came true. The downpour began around 7 am and ended at about 2pm or so. We got about 3 inches after all was said and done. I bundled up the boys and we all went out around 9am as there was plenty by then to play in.
They were going strong for an hour and a half and we were making a very small snowman when Ethan bursts out wailing and flailing his arms, unintelligible sounds coming from his mouth. "What, ET, what is it?" I ask taking hold of his arms, afraid he'll hurt himself, or worse yet, me. "I'm ccccccooooooollllllldddd!!" he's finally able to blubber out, drool spilling off his almost blue bottom lip.
With soothing promises of hot chocolate with extra marshmallows, I lead my snow-caked children inside. Nostalgia and memories of my own childhood hit me as I strip their wet pants off revealing piles of hidden snow between their reddened thighs.
I remember vividly when we lived in Utah we looked forward to snow and would play in it for hours. My mom tells me all (7 of us at the time-8 and 9 came later) of us would tromp in and out of the house every 20 minutes or so trading our wet gloves and hats for dry ones. Eventually we ran out of gloves and hats and just settled for socks on our hands which we all know don't last long in wet snow. My mother would be so frustrated by the piles of wet socks in the laundry room, but eventually would throw up her hands in surrender. Yes, we used all our socks up for the next week, BUT ALL 7 of us were occupied and happy if just for a little while. We would come home soaked to the bone and freezing for dinner, but still aching for one last time down the toboggan. The ride was exhilarating. Our blinded eyes watering and stinging from the bitter cold wind as we tipped left, then right, steering our coaster in and out of obstacles the gully set before us. It was awesome. The gully beyond our backyard was full of endless things for kids to do: hide and seek (in the dark was especially fun) watching hot air balloons land, snow sledding, mud sledding, daring a brother to stunt jump a big hole with his bike while the younger one does it instead resulting in a broken elbow, watching the Ku Klux Klan make a bon fire and gather at night while we slept on the trampoline, and of course, burying your brother up to his chest in the dirt while he sported your best tutu. Ahhh, the memories. I still can't believe my mother is mostly sane today and all my brothers and sisters are all very much alive and intact.