Snow Daze

When I was little, it seemed like every winter meant tons of snow. I am not sure if this is actually the truth, or if it’s just the memory from my childhood perspective. I’m sure “a lot” was different to me as a five-year-old than it is to me as an adult. If I needed snow pants, it was “a lot”.

There was a week when I was in high school that we had off from school because of snow, and there was one when I was an undergrad when WMU actually closed (something that is extremely rare). I remember that one because I was waiting for the city bus outside the townhouse with a couple roommates. The snow was up to our knees, and one of our other roommates yelled out the front door that classes were canceled. We didn’t believe him and stood there for another 10 minutes until we realized the buses weren’t running to campus.

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Right now we have a lot of snow.

This winter has been particularly snow-filled, and I feel like I’ve taken it in stride. I mean, we live in Michigan and it’s January. This is not an anomaly.  It feels like one though.

My school has had a total of six snow days now.  THAT is an anomaly. Being an urban district, we rarely use our snow days. We have allotted five in our contract before we have to make up days.  This is the first time in my 13 years that we have met and surpassed our quota.

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Eddie’s school district has had even more days closed since they have so many rural roads.  Of course there is also the FEET of snow we have out there and the sub-zero temperatures that make it feel like -20 degrees.

We haven’t cleared our deck since it started snowing in December over Christmas break. There is now a good four feet out there.

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If we threw Charlie out there, we would lose him. That is nuts.

Cort and Eddie ventured out this past weekend to explore the snow and get out of the house for a bit.  We almost lost them in the snow piles too.

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We have so much snow, the plows can’t keep up. Our subdivision hasn’t been plowed since Saturday (it’s now Tuesday). Yesterday I ventured out to make Eddie’s haircut appointment. It’s only a mile away. It was way more harrowing a drive than it should have been.

Even the main roads, which are plowed, are super slick because salt/sand doesn’t do a whole lot when it’s so cold out. So everyone is slipping and sliding through intersections.

The local news has given up on reporting on anything other than the cold, the snow, and crashes and other accidents that are related to the cold and snow.


While the days off have been nice, I’m ready to go back to work.  I don’t “hate” snow days like some moms do. I don’t mind being home with the boys (although, if I am honest, cabin fever does start to set in since my boys are of the play outside sort).

I do mind being off our normal schedule.  It gives me a little anxiety because each day we have off, I mentally start reworking my lesson plans and goals for the current marking period at school.

I know Eddie’s teacher is probably doing the same thing, and I feel for her. While I’m not worried about Eddie missing out on lessons or instruction, I know he probably has classmates who desperately need it.



I’m trying to just relax, take these days as a breather to get some extra homework and writing and playing done, and enjoy the memory-making of That One Year When We had All That Damn Snow.




in {and out} the mood

I have a hard time writing lately.

It’s not that I don’t have anything to blog about…goodness no!  I never believe someone when they say they have run out of things to say.  How can that happen?  I could sit here and tell you about a million things.

No, not having ideas is not my problem.

My problem is my ever-changing mood.

I will get a post all written out in my head just waiting for my fingers to be in contact with a keyboard. Thirty minutes.  That is all I will need.  And the post will be down and ready to schedule or publish.

But what happens between my head composing it and my digits typing it is a change of heart.  A change of mood.  Something that was so earnest and heartfelt the day or hour before is now gone.  It fall flat when I go to type it.

Chances are, the sentiment and feeling behind it will come back…but it will be different.  It will have played itself out.

Upon working with my psychologist and my psychiatrist, I am finding that my hormones and other chemicals have not leveled out yet since giving birth in March. Technically, a woman is considered postpartum for a full year after giving birth.

My ups are way up, and my downs come crashing out of nowhere.

In both cases I feel the need to write.  To record my feelings. To hammer out these thoughts that flood my head.  But it is rare that I can muster it back up when I am in front of a computer with ample time to write.

I’ve been tracking my downs.  They come during the second half of my month.  It’s like my brain is literally on a roller coaster.  I am climbing a hill and enjoying myself for two weeks.  I have more patience, I am less likely to snap at people.  Small things don’t grate on me.  I can let things go much easier.

For a brief day or two I am on the top of that hill.  Things look rosy and anything seems possible.  I feel like I could take on anything that the world throws at me and do it all in the most pinterest-worthy fashion ever.

The down side of the hill is much more abrupt and I find myself hurling toward the bottom.  Things feel out of control. My hair whips around my face and it’s hard to see how far from the bottom I am.  What do I need to do first?  How do I prioritize and why in the CRAP do stupid people exist?  Just to bother me and make my life miserable?

And then I bottom out.

Thanks to some new things we are trying with meds and to my new SAD Lamp, these lows are not so hard-hitting.  They are less jolting than riding the Mean Streak, but they are not quite as smooth as the Millennium Force. I mean ultimately, roller coasters are pretty fun.  The cycles of the chemical levels in my brain are annoying and not what I would classify under “fun”.

The super great days and the super crappy days are very short-lasting. The building and the falling last much longer.

And sort of both suck in their own way.

I’ve read it on other blogs of people who have anxiety and/or depression, and I’ll say it too…I never know anymore what emotional responses are “normal” and what are because of the chemical levels being “off” in my brain.

I am constantly asking myself if I am over-reacting, under-reacting, having too much sympathy, being to apathetic.  Are my expectations of other people to high?  Do I write too many people off?  Am I over-thinking?  Should I care more?

Whenever I feel like I am stretched too far that I may just break I wonder, “Am I really?  Or am I used to saying that it’s my anxiety, so I just automatically chalk it up to that? Can I really get through this or is this the straw that is going to break my back?”

I wonder if I should push myself less or more.

When I am overtired and overworked…am I?  Or am I being a wuss?

Or am I being a crazy overworking, no sleeping, put everyone before her woman?

How I write about experiences is based on the mood I am in when it happens.  How the experience struck me.  If that mood runs away, I can’t muster it back up to put words to it.

And so it goes…


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We live in West Michigan.

We get snow in the winter. “Lake effect” snow.

The kind of snow that falls in HUGE flakes and sticks to everything.

Snow that turns a crispy icey texture when a sudden “deep freeze” hits us.

Snow that blankets the world we live in and covers all living things for a long winter’s rest.

Snow that doesn’t close schools because we’ve seen worse.

but that can put a halt to everything with just the right direction of the wind.

We get the kind of snow you see in Christmas movies.

We like to hibernate in the winter in these parts.

A photo journal entry…show us what winter looks like in your town.