It’s a little like The Shining, I tell my mother. She’s in Florida for the week, and we are on our weekly snow day, the first of two in a row this week, the fifth in a month of heavy snow and ice storms. This is before the thunder snowstorm starts.
Swearing off the hysteria of local TV news, I’ve elected to get my updates from social media instead. Everyone seems to have power, and apparently all of my friends are closet pastry chefs, eager to photograph their creations. They make more beautiful cookies than we do. Some of the heart-shaped ones belong on magazine covers. It’s scary outside, but the world is rose colored on Facebook. It’s like Martha Stewart hijacked my news feed.
I am tempted to post the art project Robin improvised from the contents of our under sink cabinet (above). He was in the bathroom for a long time, wasn’t he?
Oh, he made valentine cards too, some downright precious ones. I was so pleased with myself for remembering to stock up for his classmates. The one time I don’t blow off this vital Pre-K ritual is the V-Day when School Is Cancelled Due To Inclement Weather. F-ing figures.
I’m snowbound at home with 10 homemade, hand-decorated and cut hearts taped to the coolest heart-shaped plastic straws to give as gifts. (You know, the kind that are all curled up and trap stagnant water in them that grows bacteria. The kind you would neeeeever let your kid drink milk from and would be unwise to reuse more than a couple times, even for water?)
The boys made cookies, but they are too embarrassing to photograph: curiously hard M&M studded peanut butter lumps, inexplicably gluten free. The dough was so unwieldy, they didn’t even get a dozen, so none to share with neighbors.
On the day before this 12-inch snow dump, I’d stocked up at the craft store. Pipe cleaner hearts are on the list for later, along with bear mask making and a big glass of prosecco. (Adults only.) Previous favorite snow day pairings include safety trampoline and Afropop. And my personal favorite, Pixar and a growler. (Child optional.)
We are all a little insane here, but getting better at managing all this unwanted free time. Randy’s home and we are fighting for work shifts on the computer. I stagger a 3.5 hour work session with shoveling and his internet conference call with the state. An angel neighbor takes Robin for a play date, but we are both too busy to even consider romance.
I guess with all the zigging and zagging, we are not so sick of each other yet, even on this second snow day in a row. No one is homicidal. The lights have stayed on. We’ve shoveled snow with and for friends. Out front there are swelling snowmen two storms old, a few inches taller than when we went to bed last night. It is all starting to feel normal.
When a thunderous crash startled my reading yesterday, I was relieved to realize it was merely the thunder they had predicted with our second round of snow. Not another gutter-breaking rooftop snow slide. Just thunder and lightening. Funny times when this realization calms you.
Valentine’s dinner is Indian take out. Though we should have had time to cook today, Randy got out for a run and I passed time hanging out with neighbors, watching Robin and his friends climb the freakishly tall mounds of snow piled into our tiny front gardens. When I caught Robin licking the snow off of a neighbor’s car, I knew it was time to head in for dinner. Prosecco and sag paneer. Belgian chocolates for dessert. (You know, the kind you grab with some reticence from the stack of orphaned gourmet food near the check out line at TJ Maxx.)
A happy holiday indeed.