My husband says Southern California is the best place to live because where else can you surf in the morning and ski in the afternoon? Or maybe it's ski in the morning and surf in the afternoon.
Not that we do either, mind you. But we could. And that is enough to prevent me ever luring him to the much better place to live, aka the East Coast.
But there are days like today that make me really love where we live. We've had some pretty crazy weather lately. It's been chilly. Rainy. And yesterday morning, I spotted some snow on the mountain that we can see from our back yard.
You might have seen news accounts of the avalanche that killed a few people the other day in SoCal. In a town called Wrightwood. It's obviously a terrible tragedy and I don't mean to make light of it in any way. The news video of them giving CPR to one of the victims is haunting.
But my husband and I also noticed how much snow was up there. It's only an hour and 15 minutes away from our house.
We haven't been to the snow for two years. Sawyer loved it then. Sage was non-commital. Then again, she was only five months old.
We decided to head to Wrightwood this morning. Thus began the frantic search for appropriate clothes for the kids. I bought Sage fake Uggs at Target yesterday and David waterproofed them. Sawyer has boots from last year, so we "thought" we were all set - until he tried them on right before we left and discovered they're too small. Poor kid had to wear his sneakers.
I also could not find any gloves for him, so he wore my liners, which I wear for running and which, besides being ginormous on him, are as waterproof as a sieve.
We finally got on the road, only an hour behind schedule. The roads were clear. There was not a cloud in the sky. When we exited the highway, we had just five miles to go to reach our little spot.
I was thrilled when we started seeing snow piled up on the side of the highway. Sawyer looked out at a pristine patch glistening in the sun and yelled "Mommy, somebody poured glitter on the snow!"
Then, we hit traffic. Fourty-five minutes and 450 profanities later - Sawyer whining "I want to get out in the snow" and Sage whining "I"m ready to go home" - we finally emerged from stop-and-go to pull into the parking lot. Right down the street is a cute little playground and a gentle slope. It's the perfect spot for little ones.
It was 42 degrees and as we played in the glorious whiteness, I actually had to take off my coat. It also meant that poor Sawyer, despite soaking feet and hands, didn't even feel the cold for a couple hours.
We had snowball fights. Sage discovered that, when she haughtily discarded her mittens like they were for WIMPS, that snow is actually Cold. Back on went the mittens.
We built the kids' first snowman. And yes, we rolled the snowball to make the body parts. I'm from Connecticut, for cripe's sake! I KNOW how to build a snowman!
Someone let us borrow a sled, and both kids got their first sled rides. Sage, who had to be convinced, loved it! When we got to the bottom of the tiny hill she shouted "Boo it again! Boo it again!"
Watching the kids have so much fun doing something that I grew up doing was a joy, even for just a short time. They'll never know what it's like to wake up for school and huddle around the radio (altho I'm sure it's done by internet now), straining to hear the name of their town as the announcer reads off the list of school closings for snow.
They'll never go to sleep with not a flake on the ground and wake up to a world that's astonishingly covered in frosting like a giant, wondrous cake.
Living out here, we have to take days like today and savor it. For my guys, today WAS a snow day.