At the beginning of the week we had one heck of a lot of snow. Inches of it had fallen and while it certainly isn't the most snow we've ever seen (or had in MI) it's the most I've seen at this time of year for several years. Having spent last winter in Kentucky where our total snow fall was about three inches the recent snow fall was a veritable winter wonderland. When there is snow on the ground the children enjoy winter more, as YCJ says, "Snow makes it worth playing outside in the cold."
The only one of the children to spend any time out of doors on Sunday was ECJ and that's because he was helping Daddy shovel our decks, porches, walkways, and driveway as well as helping to do the neighbor's. By the time they both came in they were chilled to the bone and since it was still snowing Daddy and I decided that Monday would be a better day to play outside. Sure enough as soon as lessons were done on Monday all three children bundled up and went out the door to play.
There were regular snow angels made, "forward" snow angels made, and snow ball fights for two and a half hours! If you're wondering what a "forward" snow angel is it's when you lay on your belly and make the snow angel. YCJ has gotten the hang of keeping her face out of the snow, but Mommy had to dust off Peanut's face and glasses. Some of my favorite pictures that day were taken of Peanut playing in the shadow of the house because of the blue tint that occurred without doctoring the pictures.
Tuesday was another day to play outside in the snow. The plow trucks had come by and made a massive pile at the end of our street which also happens to touch our yard. This pile was bigger than me. To any child, and indeed to me, it looked like the perfect makings of a snow fort. They spent another two hours climbing the "mountain" and digging tunnels with their hands. The snow was really not stable enough for them to climb inside and hang out once the fort was made but they had a ton of fun making it.
Later that night some boys from the street behind us destroyed the fort in their attempts to build a ramp in the snow to snowboard down. Daddy and I actually had to send the boys home because they were facing the ramp into the drainage ditch next to the farmer's field and could have gotten seriously hurt.
The rest of the week we were either busy running errands, entertaining, or the weather was rainy (yes, rainy!) and so the children didn't go out to play. Once that sun sets the temperatures drop and there's no being outside in that chill in the dark. As I write this over half the snow that fell last weekend has melted due to the rain and we're not supposed to get more than a flurry or two before Christmas.
This week we added 5.5 hours to our yearly total for the 1000 Hours Outside Challenge making our new year to date total 146.75 hours of outside time! Nope, I haven't made it to the quarter mark yet as you can plainly see. And really I will be surprised if we hit the 250 hours mark before the end of winter. But, as I've said before those spring through summer months next year will be bursting with outdoor time. We camp and spend time at parks, we walk and go to beaches, we picnic and we hike, and we explore new places. We have several camping trips and outdoor field trips planned for next spring and summer!
Remember in these chilly months to keep that hot chocolate flowing, the hugs warm, and the clothing layered! This is my last post before Christmas, I won't be back on the blog until December 29th. Though sometime before Christmas and sometime right after Christmas there will be a few things on our Facebook page . I'm looking forward to a week off of lessons and spending time with those I love. I hope that your Christmases are wonderful, that your family's are full of hugs, and you know that you are loved this year. Many many blessings from all of us here to all of you out there.