This morning, Sunday, I arose from slumber when the sunshine around the drawn shades could no longer be ignored. I shuffled out of the bedroom and into the gorgeous rays coming through the sliding glass doors in the dining area. How stunning this winter day, the pines heavy with snow and the maples, though devoid of leaves, their branches supporting thick coats of white, great windrows lined the drive and the blanketed roof of the garage all making for a picture-perfect winter-scape. Oh, these Wisconsin winters!
Then my eyes wandered from the grandeur before me to the thermometer hanging in the porch. Holy moly! Twenty-two below. First thought, do I have to venture outside for anything? The answer was no, therefore, I chose to ignore the nasty temp. Although, I put on long johns even though I had no plans whatsoever to go outside.
Mother Nature, what are you thinking? Does this weather benefit anyone or anything? I think not.
When our kids were young and heading out to play in the snow, or we’d go snowmobiling, I looked upon bundling them up as a contest between me and Old Mommy Nature to keep my kids warm. I can confidently say that most of the time I won.
I’d start with, of course, long johns, then wool socks and turtlenecks, then sweatshirts and heavy jeans or sweatpants, followed by thick, puffy jackets and snow pants, mittens, hats, and scarves all knitted by great-grandma, and finally boots. Then I lead them to the door, pushed them out, and quickly shut out the cold. Not really, I didn’t have to push, they were always willing. Really.
The oldest, once he got into junior high, rebelled. We had a heated exchange once out on the snowmobile trail as he refused to put a scarf around his neck. I finally had to relent and waited to deliver a smug ‘I told you so’ at some point down the pike. It never happened. He’s a stubborn kid, even to this day. If he came close to freezing his neck, he wouldn’t let on.
When I was younger, I had turtlenecks in a plethora of colors. I wore them to work, at home, with nearly every outfit I had. Now, I find it feels as though my airway is being threatened. Not to mention that they push the skin up my neck and make me look like the Michelin Man with chins aplenty hanging over the top. I’ve had to be a tad more creative when trying to stay warm these days, except when fashion takes a back seat and warmth wins out.
Back to putting on long johns this morning, why are they called ‘long johns?’ Why not Ed, or Pete, or Rufus? Anyway, that’s hardly important on mornings such as this. By noon I had to take them off. I thought I was going to bake along with the chicken in the oven.