Monday, March 15, 2021

Surviving Winter

 Winter in New England is no joke.
It's cold and dark and long.
So long.
But it's also restful and quiet and incredibly beautiful.
When I saw this view at the top of Burke Mountain I stood in awe. 
I felt like I had snuck inside Narnia.
I never knew winter could be so magical. 
C.S Lewis wisely says, “Everyone begins as a child by liking weather. You learn the art of disliking it as you grow up. Noticed it on a snowy day? The grown-ups are all going about with long faces, but look at the children – and the dogs? They know what snow’s made for.”
Zion thinks the snow is the best.
The kids and I have all loved the snow too.
It really is so fun.
So many people told us that surviving winter was all about getting the right gear 
and getting out an enjoying winter activities. 
I think they were right!
LL Bean has become one of our new favorite stores.
Going with the long down jacket was 100% the right move.
It's basically like wearing a down comforter.  

We also got a few products from Lands End (thanks to a huge sale)
 and have been really impressed.
Hudson is always cold so we bought him the warmest jacket they had 
and he's been toasty all winter. 
Bogs are our BFF.
They are easy to slip on and off, keep your feet super warm and can handle the snow, mud and water. 
Aaron and I also got some Bean Boots and I really like them too.
Did you know mittens are warmer then gloves?
I didn't either
but Bernie did. 
They are also easier to put on
so it's a win win.
The kids made their first snowman!
Does making a snowman count as P.E. and art?
Hudson votes yes.
We also tried snowshoeing for the first time.
I'm a fan.
We have 2 free ice skating rinks within 5 minutes from our house. Wes and Maddie were both big rollerbladers back in CA 
and transferred over to skates like a champ.
I think they asked me every day to take them skating.
On Sundays we would meet some friends at the rink after church 
and the kids would play a game of pick up hockey. 
They loved playing with the big kids.
Wesley fell in love this winter.
With snowboarding.We joined a learn to ski program at some local mountains.
The kids received a one hour lesson every week
(Aaron and I got to be chaperone's)
and then we got to stay and ski for the rest of the day.
We all had so much fun and loved that we could do it together.
I think skiing once a week helped keep us all sane. These guys caught on so fast.
I didn't even know what a balaclava was 6 months ago
but I do now! 
I love these super cozy ones from Turtle.Winter still feels foreign and cold but it's a big part of where we live 
so I'm doing my best to embrace it.
I can honestly say I have loved my first real winter but enough is enough.
Now I'm counting down the days to spring.

I probably should end here 
but I found these thoughts from Spurgeon on winter and had to include it. 
I'll probably want to read it next year. 

Scripture: “Thou hast made summer and winter.” (Psalm 74:17)

Spurgeon: “My soul begins this wintry month with thy God. The cold snows and the piercing winds all remind thee that He keeps His covenant with day and night, and tend to assure thee that He will also keep that glorious covenant which He has made with thee in the person of Christ Jesus. He who is true to His Word in the revolutions of the seasons of this poor sin-polluted world, will not prove unfaithful in His dealings with His own well-beloved Son.

Winter in the soul is by no means a comfortable season, and if it be upon thee just now it will be very painful to thee: but there is this comfort, namely, that the Lord makes it. He sends the sharp blasts of adversity to nip the buds of expectation: He scattereth the hoarfrost like ashes over the once verdant meadows of our joy: He casteth forth his ice like morsels freezing the streams of our delight. He does it all, He is the great Winter King, and rules in the realms of frost, and therefore thou canst not murmur. Losses, crosses, heaviness, sickness, poverty, and a thousand other ills, are of the Lord’s sending, and come to us with wise design. Frost kills noxious insects, and put a bound to raging diseases; they break up the clods, and sweeten the soil. O that such good results would always follow our winters of affliction!

How we prize the fire just now! How pleasant is its cheerful glow! Let us in the same manner prize our Lord, who is the constant source of warmth and comfort in every time of trouble. Let us draw night to Him, and in Him find joy and peace in believing. Let us wrap ourselves in the warm garments of His promises, and go forth to labours which befit the season, for it were ill to be as the sluggard who will not plough by reason of the cold; for he shall beg in summer and have nothing.”