Opinions & Happenings / Uncategorized

My Not so Grown-Up Snow Day

One day I hope to raise my children in a neighborhood similar to the one in which I grew up in. It was truly awesome. There were kids my age and lot of room outdoors for playing. It was very safe and we had pretty much free reign of the neighborhood. 

When I was a kid, we made snow forts, igloos, snowmen, snow angels, snow drawings, snow ball fights, and snow sculptures. Heck, we even once made snow ice cream. After that Nickelodeon movie “Snow Day” came out, we tried to find the courage to throw snow balls at the plow man. One of my families best friends whom we’ve known for 20+ years now, we met when my sister, Emily, and I went over to meet the new girl. We had a snowball fight and my sister accidentally threw some ice instead of snow to which the new girl (now one of our oldest friends) burst out crying and told us to “get off her property and never come back”. 

I remember one time after a pizza night at the neighbors, my parents suggested as a prank we take their snowman, put it in our sled, and move it across the street to our front yard. That is when I found out how cool my parents were.

We also used to take our sleds out to the golf course near our house for epic sledding. The parents would even come along and bring coolers of beer. It was a great time. One time, my younger sister, Emily, sledded (slid?) right into this thorn bush. The bush pierced her cartilage! This was when everyone was getting their cartilage pierced but my mom wouldn’t let us. I was so jealous of Emily and her (probably infected) pierced cartilage that I angled my sled right at that bush all day long hoping to have the same result. I didn’t.

Once, about 4 of us took our sleds and set off on an snow exploration of the golf course. We came to this giant clearing and walked about halfway across before we realized we were actually on a pond (and it was cracking). We made it safely to the other side and continued our journey (but we took a different way back). 

Now most of those kids have moved on. Two of them are married or almost married (not to each other, although in our preteen and teen years I often wondered if a neighborhood romance might evolve). I know more kids have moved into the neighborhood but I don’t see them outdoors playing in the snow. This distresses me. 

So, when we recently got 18+ inches of snow, I decided to do something about it. I went out in my yard alone and built a massive Derek Jeter inspire snowman. 

Then, I wrote a poem challenging the neighborhood kids to beat my snow man and put it in their mail boxes. It worked! And it’s still working! I encourage everyone to do this. All kids deserve to know how to build a snowman (and also possibly get their cartilage pierced by sledding into a pricker bush). 

 

The poem I wrote and left in kids mailboxes:

Long ago on Woodcrest Drive

Maybe even before you were born,

There were some kids before you

Who couldn’t wait for a winter storm

 

Patiently, they’d wait

For the “cancelled” announcement from school

Then they’d put on gloves and parkas

And what happened next was cool

 

They left each of their warm homes

And headed onto the street

The house with the best sledding hill

Is where they’d choose to meet.

 

You could play outside for hours,

Without getting gross or hurt

Because the ground was covered in snow

We weren’t getting covered in dirt

 

We made snow forts and angels

We were a snow building clan

But most impressively of all,

Was when we built a snow man

 

Each house would make their very own

Every family working hard,

There was a snowman contest going

In almost every single front yard.

 

And then late one night,

We decided on a joke,

We stole the neighbors snowman

Thankfully, it never broke

 

We loaded it on our sled

With help from mom and dad

In the morning when they saw,

We knew they’d be so mad.

 

But it was all for fun

And we laugh about it now

That day we stole their snowman

And they still do not know how

 

So now we think it’s your turn

To keep traditions of years gone by

Can you build a snowman?

You sure can if you try!

 

We hope that you’ll enjoy it,

All the imagination and cheer

So you too can appreciate,

This special time of year.

 

A snowman helps you realize

That fun doesn’t always cost.  

So next time you have a snow day

Go meet your friend, Jack Frost. 

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