We knew from the weather report that a big storm was heading our way this week. The anticipated snow totals at home were in feet, not inches! We haven’t really seen snow like that this early in the season since we built this house, and to come in time for Christmas (which is also John’s birthday) felt like a special early gift!
Waking up to fat flakes fluttering to the ground and a landscape coated in a cottony blanket of white is simply magical. Last night, John got a head start on some shoveling, though you could hardly tell this morning. While he braved the roads to hit the slopes (ski widow season has commenced), I couldn’t resist bundling up and walking around in this real-life snow globe. Cholula sensed an adventure and wagged her tail furiously while I pulled on a thermal of John’s (my belly pokes out from under mine!). The only weatherproof jacket that would zip over the baby was also his! Sufficiently cozied up in a hat, gloves, and snow boots, we set off through the neighborhood- a serious winter wonderland.
Even finding my way down the front steps was tricky in all of the powder. The driveway had been plowed hours ago and was now coated again. This snow was deep, wet, and heavy despite the light flakes falling. The sky and mountains and ground were all the same color- white. The neighborhood was quiet, its usual sounds cushioned by the snow. Occasionally, I heard the avalanche bombs going off at the nearby resorts or a snow-blower paying for itself somewhere on the next block. My little crooked-eared Yeti bounded through chest-deep drifts, sometimes dipping her head under the snow for a sniff and disappearing altogether before popping her head back up, nose covered in the white stuff. I couldn’t help but giggle at her antics and her joy was contagious. I found myself sticking out my tongue to catch snowflakes and humming a song from childhood: “If all the snowflakes were Hershey Bars and milkshakes, oh what a snow that would be. I’d stand outside with my mouth open wide… ah ah ah ahhh ah ah ahhh ah ah ahhh…”
I waved at a few neighbors shoveling their walks. Each one said something along the lines of, “Isn’t it beautiful?” and smiled, despite huffing and puffing in their work. You don’t live in Utah if you don’t at least kind of like snow. Days like today (which we haven’t seen many of in the last few years) are what most residents pray for all winter long. I could already hear John’s gleeful account of his ski day. I knew his boot-driers would be humming away tonight and he’d be searching for clean ski socks later. ‘Tis the season, as they say.
I pushed some of the heavy snow away from the walkway when I returned to the house, saving the serious shoveling for my mountain man. I stomped the snow from my boots and left them by the door; I’ll need them all week long. This storm is expected to continue through tomorrow night, with another one arriving right behind it on Christmas Day. Is there anything better than a truly white Christmas, bundled up in long johns and slippers with eggnog, a loved one, and a fire blazing, watching the flakes sway to the ground from inside?
Come March, I’m over winter and the sun worshiper in me starts to go stir-crazy. This year, I’m sure I’ll be too preoccupied with Baby Howe to care! But today, with three short days until Christmas and feeling extra shmoopy and nostalgic, I feel nothing but contentment and gratitude. Life is good.
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One year ago: The West Coast intro to our bicoastal December trip.