And just like that, it snowed. And just like that, our world shut down for just a few hours, but wasn’t it lovely? Waiting for winter took a bit of patience this year as the snow and cold took its time to get here. I know you are not all fans of winter, and I am sorry if I am just gushing on and on, but here it is.
Sitting in my old house during a snowstorm is such a pleasure. My hobbies take over and I spend the time moving from project to project with no real plan because it is snowing! Once in a while, I go outside with my shovel or my broom and clear a path. I go outside to fill the bird feeder or even recover it from the snow as the squirrels always find a way to get to my feeders and often knock them down.
This week I am even planning on making a snow cloud. It is easy to do (with adult supervision, I might add!) When it is bitterly cold, boil water in a pan on the stove. I always add some food coloring to make the cloud quite beautiful! When the water is boiling, take it outside and toss the water (not the pan) into the air. Make sure someone is there with a camera to photograph your cloud! It might take a few tries, but it is certainly worth it when you get a perfect cloud.
This past week, not only brought a lovely snowstorm, but a county full of snowmen. Everywhere I look there are snowmen peering out at us with coal eyes, button noses and carrots for buttons! These snowmen are everywhere, and I can’t get enough of them! Aaron and Rachel and the boys built a giant snowman which has begun to tilt a bit. Graham ran over to get me to bring the camera over to get a photo. I love that they took the time as a family to build this snowman.
It is easy for me to get carried away by this beauty, but I decided to go to the BBC website to find some snow information! In 2008 the folks of Bethel, Maine built a community snowman. It took a month to complete and it stood 122 feet tall! That record was broken in 2020 by a group in Austria who built a 125-foot snowman.
What else did I learn, you ask? All snowflakes have six sides and fall at an average of two to five feet per hour. It takes one snowflake one hour to reach the ground. In my opinion, that is a lot of perseverance for that one tiny snowflake to spend an hour finding its way to the ground. Here is something else I did not know! Snow is not white, but is translucent. The reflecting light makes it white! Fresh snow also absorbs sounds. That is why during a snowstorm the world is perfectly quiet!
The Scots have 421 words for snow. (Yes, I was amazed at that fact also!) According to research done by the University of Glasgow, they found the 421 words. A few samples of these words include “skelf” which mean a large snowflake, “spitters” means small drops of snow, and “unbrak” makes the beginning of a thaw. I love adding these words to my own vocabulary; I just need to find the other 418 words!
Maybe after reading some of these facts you have a new appreciation for snow. I do feel sorry for children who never heard the magic words, “snow day,” whispered to them in the early morning. I do realize text messages are now sent, but not to young children. I remember those magical days when my mom whispered those words to me. I whispered those same words to my children! Even though I am no longer in a public school or have children going to school, I watch the TV crawls and am so happy when kids get a snow day. By the way, I want to congratulate the Fremont School District for giving children a real snow day! Bravo to you folks.
Winter is here. This week all eyes will be on Punxsutawny Phil on Groundhog Day. Will he see his shadow or not? No matter what he sees or doesn’t see, we will have six more weeks of winter!
As author Rick Bass says, “Be loyal to winter, all the way through-all the way and with sincerity.”
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