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Isn’t this a lovely picture?

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It’s not a framed poster, it’s a window!

Wally Weatherman has made it sound like we would see real snow starting on Thursday. By Thursday morning the storm timeline was pushed out later and it really didn’t seem like anything significant would happen.

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Overnight the snow fell. There was probably about three inches that accumulated. I was ripped out of a deep sleep by the phone ringing. School was canceled for the day. Stay warm and safe.

Ten minutes later when Heath’s 6:00 am alarm went off, we went in to tell the boys. You would think it was Christmas morning. It was so early in the morning but we were so excited to be alive! Soon we couldn’t wait any longer. We had to get Gwen up.

It wasn’t even 7:00 am yet and the five of us were outside enjoying the snow day.

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Gwen made snow angels. When I saw the picture I didn’t know Gwen had done this. I asked where it happened and Heath said, “To the left of the freeway.” Then he realized his mistake! We had a good laugh over that one. Driveway, freeway … what’s the difference?

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A snowman was made and decorated in our front yard. Parker named him Greg. Too bad we didn’t have any carrots or other food appropriate to make a face. Later in the morning I saw that Greg’s head had been amputated. I don’t know if it fell off on its own or if it was hit by a snowball or what. The scarf was at the top and the head and hat were on the ground nearby. I saw kids, including my boys, building snowmen in the green space and then diving into them for an extra soft landing.

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There were lots of friendly snowball fights. The kids had been outside for quite some time playing in the early morning twilight. I kept shushing them because I was afraid the neighbors would be annoyed by the California kids playing in the snow. By the time I couldn’t stand being outside in the cold anymore, I went in. I was wearing a coat over my pajamas and had slippers on my bare feet. I looked out the windows at my still playing kids and noticed Parker’s friend had come out to join the snowball fight.

Then I saw that my friend up the street posted pictures on Facebook and said her girls were excited about the rare snow day. I told her to send them on down to play. It didn’t take long before the neighborhood kids were trickling outside to join the festivities. Bradley is a high school freshman who is so cute with the little kids. I saw him pulling kids around on a sled. Gwen loved it. She squealed as she toppled over into a snowdrift.

Heath and I could not stop running to the windows to watch kids play. He told me about his first snowstorm here. He was a high school sophomore and had only been in town for a couple months. School let out for the day and the kids ran outside so excited. Teenagers were acting like kindergarteners at the sight of snow. Since it was nearly winter break, school was canceled until the New Year. The snow didn’t last long but the memories remained.

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We didn’t photograph the neighborhood playing outside. We did get these amazing views. A little bit to the left of the edge of this picture is where I saw a bunch of kids sledding down a hill. They learned the street doesn’t slope as much as it was imagined to in the summer. Parents were already planning on kids starting at the top of the street and sledding down toward our house with the first snowfall. The kids found some steeper hills among the trees in the natural growth area.

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This is the view from Heath’s office in the back of the house. So amazing right? It’s such a beautiful day.

Gwen came in first after 90 minutes, to warm up and eat breakfast. Then she was back out because I told her about inviting her friends down via Facebook. Parker came in next after two hours. He stayed in for a long time watching TV in front of the toasty fireplace. When I told him Grant and Tucker were outside, Parker decided to rejoin the fun. Grant is his age.

Gavin was outside for four or more hours before he decided he was too wet and cold to enjoy being out there anymore. I told him he missed a phone call from a friend. So he came in and showered to warm up. Parker showered before we could stop him this morning. I laugh to think I blow dried his hair before letting him out to play. The boys had sopping wet hair when they came in!

Gavin called his friend to find out he was invited to a hilly field nearby. He climbed back into his shoes and coat so Heath could take him. There were lots of boys from school and church so I know Gavin will have fun. I just wonder how long he will stay out there. This gives me hope for the summer. My boys were too shy to go out and meet anyone. Now they realize they can have a lot of fun with boys in this neighborhood and close by.

Gwen has been thawing out at a friend’s house for a while now. The timing on that was a little weird. She has a friend who lives just behind our street. Her mom called me to see if Gwen wanted to play. They have a big front yard but all the kids were hanging out in the cul de sac by our house. The mom sent her first grade daughter and younger son into our neighborhood while she stayed home with the twin boy that was sick. By the time they got here Gwen was heading inside with friends.

So I babysat from the window! There were enough parents outside I knew the kids were safe. And they found plenty of kids to play with. I saw them heading home and was relieved when their mom texted that they made it home.

I saw a dad pulling a kid in a sled with each hand. They were yelling, “Faster Daddy! Faster!” Heath opened the window to encourage him. The dad called up that they are California kids. We yelled back that ours are too! I don’t know that I have ever enjoyed snow so much. I guess it’s more magical when it’s so rare.

It really does feel like Christmas. I haven’t even showered yet! Best snow day ever!

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