Every kid-at-heart celebrates the first snow of the season, but what about the last snow?
My newish boss, who immigrated from Canada, recently expressed disappointment that the winter snows here in Michigan had already ended by March. The seasoned Michiganders on staff assured him that our last snow almost never happens in early March, even if we get a false springtime that brings flowers into bloom.
Usually there's at least one more blizzard that bestows enough snow and ice that we can play in it one more time.
We never know exactly when to expect that random last chance, after it looked like winter was over, to use the new skating rink downtown or slide across a frozen puddle one more time. Its fleeting joys can only be captured by those who stay ready.
It's easy to get excited about a fresh blanket of snow when it means Christmas is coming.
But honestly, here in Michigan, a hearty blizzard might also crash Easter Sunday.
(Above, my daughter is threatening the weather with a knife on Easter Sunday 2020.) Sometimes it's fun to complain about spectacularly "unlucky" out-of-season snowstorms that fall on Easter, Mothers' Day, or heaven help us, that one time on 4th of July in Northern Michigan.
But instead of getting upset because we were already enjoying warmer weather...
...why not let the Midwestern winter give us a long, awkward Midwestern goodbye? It's a sign of authentic affection, after all. We can embrace it just once more and clasp hands with our nearest and dearest to form an ice whip, or yeet ourselves down the side of a hill, just once more for old times' sake.
And then we get to go inside and have just one more cup of steaming hot cocoa by the fireplace before we move on to bonfire-and-s'mores season.
Happy last snow!
Or, if that moment has already passed, happy rare and magical spring without snow! Expecting to make the best of the worst sets us up to appreciate whatever happens next.
Visit the Magic Nutshell every Thursday for another Pocket of Joy.