Tuesday, January 11, 2011


On December first, Mia rushed to the window and peered out hopefully.  She gazed right.  She stared left.  She frowned.

Mama!  It's WINTER time, and it's supposed to snow at winter!  When will it snow?

I did my best to explain weather patterns and unpredictability and technicalities, such as they may be, but still -- winter started with a disappointing bang.  Mia's eyes registered understanding, and I railed against the weatherman.  Where was our snow?

December passed uneventfully.  A few days ago, it was in the 50's and brightly sunny.  I held little hope for January.

Until yesterday morning.  We woke up to the slightest dusting of white over our dead grass and unraked leaves, and honestly, I was already content with that amount of snow.  It was snow, even if it looked like a thick, patchy frost.  Soon, though, it got even better: thick, fat flakes fell heavily, and our mismanaged leaves were suddenly disguised by wet snow.  And okay -- it may never have exceeded more than half of an inch of precipitation, but it was snow.


We headed out for a few minutes of reckless clothes-wetting before going to school, which is a magical feat I attribute solely to my camera: the promise of good photo-ops is just about the only thing that would get me out the door early, of all things. 

The girls both had their warmest winter clothes on -- for the most part.  Pants, which, for them, is a step above their usual attire of skirt plus tights. 

Their shoes collected clumps of new snow with each step in the grass, and when I realized that this would make their feet wet for an entire morning of preschool, I loaded them into the car.  It was still a wonderland around us -- blowing snow made the world white and exotic.  I kept my camera ready for any safe-shot -- snow!

We never turned on any music; the silence outside required silence inside.  Except for our own squeals of excitement and glee: snow!  Mia begged me to drive faster, but I wanted to savor the slowness.  Gaze around me.  Appreciate the white.

I appreciated it right up until my tires started sliding downhill at the next stoplight. 

We've had so little inclement weather since we've had this vehicle, that I had no idea where the 4-wheel-drive switch was, or even how to make it work if I DID find it.  But that never crossed my mind as I saw the rear bumper of the car before me getting closer too fast.  I might have been going 15-mph, which gave me plenty of time to consider my options:  I could pump the brakes (but I didn't know if that advice was outdated...); I could let myself bump into the car in front of us (which would be a big, expensive headache -- though probably not terribly unsafe); I could pop the curb to my right, and drive onto the snowy grass of a residential yard (and hope to avoid the sturdy oak tree planted dead-center). 

I chose the grass. 

We popped the curb, and as soon as my tires hit rough grass, slowed to a stop.  We missed the oak tree.  Traffic moved on.  The big, fancy SUV behind me was sliding too, so I waited until it stopped, then pulled back into the road -- going less than 2-mph.

Again, Mia begged me to go faster.  Do you think I acquiesced?

Friends, I did not.  I crawled us the rest of the way to school, explaining in multiple ways why jumping the curb and driving through some poor soul's yard wasn't fun, but my daughters' giggles overruled me: Mom so doesn't know what fun is all about.

And, though I apparently don't know how to drive in a dusting of snow, I still love it. 

Tell me about the snow -- or lack thereof -- where you are!


  1. I was wondering from your Facebook post whether you slid down a hill in your car, or... in person ;) Glad everything turned out okay!

    Your girls make me laugh; the boys love to beg me to drive ever faster in bumper-to-bumper traffic. And I am the only one to blame for teaching them to yell, "Hit the gas, Mom!"

    We're supposed to get snow today here in D.C., but depending on which forecast you reference, we could be seeing anything from a bare dusting to inches and inches. I'm hoping for something in between :)

  2. We had snow Sunday afternoon (in north Texas). It was very pretty and peaceful. I love the silence of snow. We did not let our kids play in it though, because it had rained for several hours in the morning so it would just be a slushy mess. We still have the snow in the yard because it is so cold, but the sun is finally shining so I imagine it will melt soon enough.

  3. We don't get much snow here either, and driving in it when we do is much less of an adventure and much more of a nightmare for me.

    The kiddos are still enthralled with the fluffy white stuff, though, which somehow calms my nerves a bit. Glad everyone is okay!

  4. Good choice to go for the grass! Glad you're all okay!

    We've had snow here for several weeks. I was soooo excited to come back from Christmas vacation and see that it had all melted away. But that only lasted a few days. It has now hit us full force again. Of course the girls love it. So I put on my happy face for them!

    Enjoy your flakes!

  5. I live in Wisconsin, where snow is not exactly an unheard-of phenonenon. Yet everyone has forgotten how to drive in it by the time we have the first snow of the next winter.

    No matter where you live, snow is always prettier when you are inside looking out!

  6. I'm glad you made it okay! 8 inches here and 5 degrees outside right now! BRRRR! Didn't stop the tot from spending the day sledding down the hill...I might have gone down a few times myself.

  7. Oh, I have so been there!! It is so difficult to drive in the ice. We still have ice in the shadier areas on the road. I have still fishtailed coming home from work, and I am still careful about the speed and the roadway. I love the snow, but really don't like to drive in it!!


Hmm...And how did that make you FEEL?