We ventured off of the mountain today for my doctor's appointment. While we still have lots of snow on our ridge, the area below is quickly becoming snow free. With it only three days until Christmas I am pretty sure that there will still be snow on J.D.'s mountain come Friday morning unless it warms up enough to rain.
This time of year always sparks memories from long ago in a little town called Washington Court House, Ohio. I remember when we had a really good snow my mother would take a large bowl out into the yard and fill it with snow. She would then bring it into the house and with a little sugar, some milk, and a dash of vanilla she would work magic and make snow cream. She spooned it out into cereal bowls for my brother Joey and me. To a little girl of 7 or 8 years old that snow cream was better than any ice cream cone from the Dairy Queen in the heat of summer.
From snow cream my memories continue on to playing in the snow. My mother always bundled us up nice and warm before sending us out to get our daily dose of sunshine and fresh air. I remember my mother saving bread bags in a kitchen drawer. To insure that we didn't get wet and cold from the snow she put those same bread bags over our mittens and over our socks before we put on our boots. When we were fully bagged, it was then time to go outside and build our snowmen. We happily broke branches out of the trees for the arms, all the while wishing we could build an army of snowmen so there wouldn't be any branches left to be used for switches on two children that lived in our house that sometimes misbehaved. Well, Joey misbehaved a lot more than I did. Joey and his friends would build snow forts and have wars throwing snow balls back and forth at each other. We didn't just go out and play for a few moments, we played until Mom forced us to come in. She always treated us to steaming cups of hot chocolate with marshmallows melting on top when we came in out of the cold.
Things have certainly changed over the years. Mothers no longer make snow cream, mainly because our skies are so polluted the snow really isn't clean when it falls to the ground. Not a lot of children are motivated enough these days to leave their televisions, video games, computers and the comfort of the sofa to go outside and play in the snow. I find that all a little sad and I wonder what will the snow memories be for these children when they grow old?