I pulled out all the small hats and toboggans, and I gathered together a conglomeration of mismatched gloves hoping to find suitable mates for winter-weather play. Living in the south, my children didn’t get to see snow much, and to say they were excited would be an understatement. I can categorically say I wasn’t near as excited myself, and I would have been just fine and dandy to sip coffee from the couch, gazing out the window at the white, powdery scene before me. But my six year old had pleaded, “will you come out and play with me, mom?”
So shortly thereafter I stood in the chilly air, and I was quickly reminded how much I adored summertime. I just knew we wouldn’t be able to stay out there long, especially the thirteen month old, and I winced as she plopped down into a pile of melting snow. The fact was with snow came sodden mittens, puddles of water tracked into my foyer, and coats scattered about in a fit of glee. It took twenty minutes to wrap everyone up for the frigid elements, and only five for one of them to start saying, “I can’t feel my hands,” or “I’m ready to go inside.” Perhaps, I thought, I could get a little picture before everyone froze to death, especially me.
Suddenly I felt a thud on my back, a spray of snow erupted around me, and a cascade of jubilant giggles echoed across the yard as my six year old called out over her shoulder, “I betcha can’t catch me!”
I was quite comfortable rooted to my spot on the patio, but something inside me wanted to give chase, and so I did. “I’m gonna get you!” I cried out as I ran.
Her laughter filled the air, and puffs of our collective breath rose into the air as we bolted about in circles through the snowy back yard. We attempted a snowball fight with snow that was too powdery yet to pack, but it didn’t matter as we tossed handfuls of loose flakes in each other’s direction with the passion of playfulness.
She shrieked with excitement as I ran up on her tail, and she whipped around quickly to face her attacker. Then as my firstborn met my eyes I stopped in my tracks, unable to throw the snow that rested in my oversized gloved hand. I was arrested by her gaze, and the radiance of her bright, baby-blue eyes held me in their magic spell. Her gap-toothed grin beamed with child-like wonder, and a countenance of joy shone upon her cheeks. I was in awe at that moment by the beauty of her wind-chapped cheeks, and even her pink, upturned nose was a sight to behold. Had I not feared that it would somehow distract me from the brilliant moment before me I probably would have snapped a photo, but at the time I simply took a memory shot. I traced her every feature upon my brain, I folded it up like a piece of paper, and I pressed it between the pages of my heart.
I want to remember this.