It has now been exactly four years since I retired as an elementary teacher when my daughter was one year old.  I still find my stomach in knots when it’s “back to school” time and I have to talk to every child I meet about his or her school experience.  “Do you like your teacher this year?” I might ask an innocent first grader who was instructed not to talk to strangers.  “What are you learning in school?” I ask our neighborhood kids who usually shrug me off as they run around the backyard.

But nothing tops the excitement of a snow day.  Gosh, the snow days.  I loved them so.  I remember literally feeling such indescribable joy when I saw my district flashed on an early morning TV news screen as I nestled back in bed with my book and eventually dozed off.  On the flip side, I also remember saying some not-so-kind words about our superintendent if our district was not canceled or, come on, at least delayed.

Today was a snow day for us.  Let me just state for the record that snow days for me have now officially changed.

We awoke to a steady stream of beautiful, white snow falling pretty quickly and accumulating on the ground even quicker.  Deeming our scheduled playdate as null and void, I declared it a SNOW DAY and set-out to make it nothing but fun at our house.  Snow days are fun, by golly.  And let me tell you – we were GOING TO HAVE FUN.

It was an order.

We played with Play-Dough and I tried not to mumble about how much I hate Play-Dough as I picked up every last crumb of it from the floor.  Finger painting was also involved and I sang songs of praise for the new “colorless” fingerpaints that only show color on special paper.  Thank you, Crayola.  I love you.  Unfortunately, there was not a better photo than the one above as I was too busy meeting everyone’s various craft demands and, might I add, not doing it quickly enough…

Our back patio looked like this at noon.  We were going nowhere but we needed some excitement.

Amy from posted a recipe from one her friends (“My best friend’s sister’s boyfriend’s brother’s girlfriend heard from this guy who knows this kid who’s going with the girl who saw Ferris pass out at 31 Flavors last night. I guess it’s pretty serious.”  So sorry.  Couldn’t resist.)

It was for ice cream – made out of snow.  I’m really not kidding.  We did it, loved it, and were jacked for a little while over the buzz it created.

5 cups of snow
About a cup of milk (or half and half or whipping cream)
½ cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Teeny tiny dash of salt

While chillens were playing, I decided to ring up my dear hubby who texted me earlier in the day to tell me he had patients until 7 p.m. tonight.  For the third night in a row.  I’m used to this nutty schedule but COME ON. He confirmed that he did indeed have to stay late due to a “scheduling mistake” on his end.  After a little self-talk, I peeled myself off the ceiling and got to the fun business of sweeping my floors (remember that we used Play-Dough).

Then I saw his car pull up our drive.  Ornery man.  Ornery, ornery, ornery…

Daddy coming home at 1:30 on a Thursday was a super-size jolt of excitement for us all but most of all to yours truly.

Solomon needed his nap but we decided to let Sawyer stay up and play with Susannah as they were having a ball.  I was needing a serious break at this point so we had a “slumber party” in the living room and watched “The Little Mermaid” complete with popcorn and pink lemonade.  I told ya – we were going to have fun, by golly.

What’s a snow day without actually going out and playing in the snow?  45 minutes later, after everyone was sufficiently winterized, including myself, we ventured out while Daddy shoveled the drive and sidewalk.

Sawyer loved it. (Don’t move back, Sawyer!  Ellie is um…Busy…)

Susannah loved it.

Super-Stud Winter Arctic Man loved it.

Solomon hated every last minute.  It could be because we don’t have any snow boots for him so we put him in Sawyer’s rain boots but come on…He’s the third baby.  He’ll survive.

Heck, the Schwan’s guy even stopped by to make a delivery while we were outside.  This is high-excitement stuff.

Hot chocolate and dinner…Whew, bedtime almost near.

Except then a teachable moment arose.  So we had to stop and do some science.  Of course.

At long last, Susannah sits sandwiched between her paci-obsessed brothers to watch their “night night” movie.  Praise. The. Lord.

Here I sit now…Exhausted beyond belief with my book and my new electric blanket screaming for me to come and join them.  I’m going now.  I have earned it, by golly.  But whoa…snow days are just a little different.  Memories were made.  Laughter was shared by all.  But this mama is a cooked goose.

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