There is no question that this has been the strangest weather year that I’ve experienced since, well, since it snowed in the Valley in the early ’90s.
The Boy and I went up to New York a few weeks ago in honor of Cousin J’s birthday. The Boy had just sent his Flat Stanley up to New York last month, and he was jealous that Flat Stanley got to play in the snow after Nemo, the giant snowstorm that dumped several feet of snow in the Northeast back in February.
I didn’t tell him about our trip until about a week before we’d left, mainly because I wasn’t totally sure when we would go. My sister offered to fly us up, and I wrestled with the decision of whether or not to pull him out of school the day we left. Luckily, his school moved up the date for Boot Camp (their version of Field Day), otherwise he would have to miss either Boot Camp or the trip to New York, and he would have been disappointed about missing one of them.
The Boy is an excellent travelling companion. He always has been. Even as an infant, except when he was ill or teething, he was great. But it’s even more evident now. He answered questions at the airport security checkpoint, handled his own luggage (a rolling backpack), presented his own boarding pass, found our seats on the airplane, and even proudly buckled his own seatbelt. And, thanks to all the amenities on Jet Blue, he entertained himself the entire flight. He even let me nap a bit on both flights. It was spectacular.
It was a very quick trip. We arrived Friday morning and were back home Sunday evening. But he said he had a great trip. He spent time with his cousins, played in their playroom (which he dubbed The Lego Room because, well, those were his favorite toys there), and watched Cousin J in her theater group’s performance of The Wizard of Oz. But his favorite part of all was playing in the snow.
Just the week before we arrived, it snowed pretty heavily in Westchester County, enough to close the airport to incoming flights. But it cleared up over the week, and all weather reports I checked were forecasting cold but not snowy weather. Always one to be prepared, though (Cute Husband calls it “over-packing”), I made sure I packed proper attire in the event the temperatures dropped to below freezing.
It was a good thing I did, because The Boy looked out the kitchen window Friday afternoon to see white stuff falling from the sky.
“Mom!” he exclaimed, an excited gleam in his eyes. “What’s that?”
I turned and saw flurries outside. They weren’t sticking to the ground, but the snowflakes dancing in the wind were more snow than we ever see in Florida.
“Quick!” I said, taking him by the hand and rushing downstairs to my sister’s mud room. “Let’s get your jacket on and we can go outside in the snow!”
We went outside and tried to catch snowflakes on our tongues. He was excited and had fun, but I could tell he was a bit disappointed.
“I wish I could make snowballs,” he said. He looked out at my sister’s green lawn and frowned. “But it’s not going to stay on the ground because it’s too hot.”
“Sorry, buddy,” I said, ushering him back into the house. “We can try to come up this winter, and maybe we’ll be able to see snow then.”
“Yeah. And then I can build a snow fort and have snowball fights with my cousins.”
We awoke the next morning to a crisp day, but the flurries had stopped, at least for a while. But by the afternoon, the snow was back, and this time falling a bit harder than the day before.
“It’s a blizzard!” he cried, watching the snow fall, this time in clumps instead of the delicate flakes we saw Friday. We went to the local library and spent time in the children’s area. My sister and I each tried to draw his attention away from the window, tempting him with books. I mean, he loves books, and we were in a very nice library! There were so many titles he could read!
Instead, he complained. “I don’t want to be here,” he insisted. “I want to go outside and play in the snow.”
Finally, we headed back to my sister’s house.
“I hope it’s still snowing and the snow is sticking to the ground when we get back,” he announced in the car. “I really want to throw snowballs and maybe make a little snowman.”
He got his wish. It wasn’t a thick layer of snow, but there was enough of it for him to scoop up and throw at me. As for the snowman, well, we may need to come back up north in the winter when the snow is properly sticking. While Cousin J was able to make a respectable (albeit small) snowman, he created more of a snow monster.
But he was proud of it and had lots of fun making it, and that’s all that matters.