The snow started falling at my house yesterday afternoon. It was lovely to watch – especially since I had already decided that my Martin Luther King Jr. holiday would be spent at home, catching up on rest, doing a few creative projects, and enjoying being home.
This morning it was still beautiful, and I appreciated the snow even during the hour it took me to get here to church from Beaverton (a drive which usually takes about 20 to 30 minutes). Now I am hoping that by the time I head home at 8:30 or 9:00 this evening the mercury will not have fallen to freezing so that the roads will be passable.
All in all, I love a good snow. And I chuckle at the excitement it causes us all – especially the television news crews standing watch on the top of Sylvan Hill along Highway 26, or out in the Gorge, or in the Coast Range. It seems we Oregonians just love a good weather story!
As it happened, I was part of a conference call this morning with people from Alaska, Washington, Idaho and Oregon. Of course the Alaskans thought it was hilarious that many of the team were calling in from home, not daring to drive to their offices with the 3 inches of snow they had on their driveways. I guess it is all a matter of perspective. It’s all in what we’re used to, and what we are prepared for.
At our weekly staff meeting this morning Dwight Dragoo was our facilitator. And he greeted us with our usual agenda, plus a few nicely chosen quotes for the day… all having to do with winter, or with snow. Here is a quick sampling:
“One kind word can warm three winter months”- a Japanese proverb
“A snowflake is winter’s butterfly” – from a Hero Arts stamp
“If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant…” – Anne Bradstreet
And then there was my personal favorite:
“When it snows, you have two choices: shovel, or make snow angels.” (author unknown)
I hope to remember both of these choices. Because sometimes when the snow falls, either literally or metaphorically, we need to shovel. We need to care for the physical needs of home, family, friends, and ourselves.
And other times, what we really need is to make snow angels – to revel, to play, to rejoice in the moments of surprise, the unusual occurrences in our lives. We need those snow angels every bit as much as we need the cleared sidewalks and bare driveways of our souls. On snow days … and every day.