There is nothing like a child’s reaction when they see freshly fallen snow. Their eyes get this special glow, they start to get the biggest smile you’ve ever seen and then begin jumping up and down.
I don’t remember a whole lot from my childhood but I do remember a lot of snow. I remember going out in Northern Minnesota to snow knee deep. My mom bundled me up with so many layers that I felt like a penguin waddling in the snow. I remember falling in it and feeling that first bit of cold hit my cheek. It was magical. Something so beautiful, bright, and cold was such a joy! I loved making snow angels. I would find an undisturbed patch of snow and figure out how I was going to lay on it without making a giant shoe print in it to get into position. I would turn around and just fall backwards so that I didn’t step in the area and make a shoe print. I would flap my arms and legs up and down, pushing down as deeply as I could to get a nice groove in the snow. I remember then thinking, “Now, how am I going to get back up without messing up my perfect angel?” Guys, it took a second person. I would lay there and yell out for someone to come and help me up. When they finally did, which seemed like it took them forever to hear me, I would lock my legs out so that I couldn’t fall and make a shoe print and make the other person pull me all the way up. I would then take a giant step away from the angel. Turn around and admire the perfect imprint of an angel on the ground. Why was this so special?
I was fascinated with the thought of angels. They are described as glorious beings that glow in the light of God. I imaging the most beautiful person I have ever seen. Perfect skin complexion, tall, wearing pure white robes, giant beautiful feathery wings that glisten when you look at them. Light glowing around them so they illuminate and a delicate golden halo floating a few inches above their head. Close your eyes, can you picture it? This to me made snow so special. It was me recreating and getting a quick glimpse at the thing that I perceived as beautiful and majestic. Did I care that I was cold? Did I care that a heap of snow was now in my pants and melting, running down my leg? Nope, not a bit. It was all worth it to make my little, humble snow angel.
Snow is a magical thing for kids. I now watch my kids just light up when they see the snow. It makes my heart skip a beat because I vividly remember the joy I felt when I would see that fresh, untouched snow. I do, as my mother did, bundle up my kids and send them out to their wildest fantasy. I send them out to explore and create their own joy with this pure white, sparkly beauty. My kids enjoy going down their slide and plopping, rolling even, in the snow. They enjoy looking for icicles hanging off the structures. They enjoy rolling little snow balls and lodging them at each other or the dog. They enjoy finding even the tiniest hill, and sledding. The laughter, the delight, the glow that I see around them when they are truly enjoying this gift from God. I’ve taught them how to make snow angels and snow men. They image making snow cones and even eating it (Yes, I have told them to only eat the pure white, untouched snow.)
Sometimes they strip off layers of clothing, their little cheeks and noses turn red but I let them continue to delight in the every now and then. Here in the Midwest, we don’t get snow often and when we do, it generally melts quickly. We set aside our school work, that can be done later, and we hit the outdoors. They will learn so much in other ways when exploring, imagining, truly enjoying the outside.
Are you someone who enjoys the snow? Do you have kids that do? If not, I challenge you to try it. Try to see it through the eyes of a child. The next time you see snow, image being a child and walk out into the beauty. Lay down and make a snow angel and come back and tell me how it made you feel. Did it feel magical, even a little?