This winter has been pretty darn cold and pretty darn snowy. School was just closed for the third day this year because of cold (I could totally get into the “back in my day” comments with that one but I won’t… yet). I’m not sure why it took me until mid-January to realize that a 2½-year-old is totally of the age that loves snow. And he’s not even at the age that he has to do much with it. Just being out in it with a shuggel (what most of us know as a shovel) and dad is enough for hours of entertainment and what can only be explained as pure joy.
We went out last weekend for probably an hour and attempted to build a fort but the snow was too cold (I know, right?) to stick together. So we sort of piled it up in a circle in an attempt to make one anyway. It didn’t work that well but he sure didn’t care. We played hide-and-seek using it and that was good enough for both of us. We dug with our shuggels down to the alley, throwing snow at every chance we got. We had a snowball fight with the bits of snow that we could get to stick together. We tried a snowman but then we sat on the first level of him and giggled and twisted until that idea was back to it’s pile of snow. We made snow angels although they mostly got trampled as quickly as they were made so no proof of their existence can be found (there is some religious tie-in there with angels that I won’t get into).
And then we capped off the adventure with a little of the all-time favorite: eating snow. I didn’t even have it in me to try and stop him. It was “delicious” and made him smile from ear to ear and I could see that it wasn’t from the spot where we found the bunnies have “visited” so I think we were good on the nutritional value of what he was eating. All of it was just so innocently delightful that I couldn’t quite believe it. The pure joy that he found in all of these activities really made me inexplicably happy but simultaneously a bit sad. The inexplicable happiness I’m guessing I don’t need to explain but the sadness was because it made me realize how much the world messes you up. Work, finances, politics, responsibility and the list could go on. It all means that experiences like what he had out in the snow are limited because once you have all those things on your mind, you can’t go back.
However, being able to experience those with someone so dear to you is almost close enough that you don’t care about those nagging realities. For that time in the snow I could just be a kid again and worry only about where the next snowball was coming from or trying to figure out how I could get the walls of our fort taller. Having kids has made me feel more like an adult (and old) than buying two cars, having a job for 9+ years or even buying a house but getting to play with Tjostel in the snow made me realize that it can also make me forget all that crap and enjoy things for what they are. So I hope this is a day I remember for a long time and repeat as often as I can.