My neighbours are constantly reassuring me that this winter has been unusually snowy and cold. I smile and nod. Perhaps after living here a decade I will find this weather chilly. I still maintain that we are having a beautiful and mild winter.
Granted, it has been a little cooler these last few days (-5C/23F). Evidence of the chill can be seen on the lake. The edges of the water are now covered in thin ice. Today my children amused themselves by peaking into ice holes from the shore as I stood cautiously near by. The water isn’t deep but it’s cold and I know that wet feet would have made for an uncomfortable walk back home.
Little Sweetpea found a pine cone near by and cared for it until we returned home. She would toss it on the ice and then retrieve it with great drama. My eldest brought a toy truck with him and used it to break the ice. After a while I asked him to stop and listen to the sounds that he could hear. I wanted him to notice the quiet lapping of water on ice. Hearing this sound tricked me into thinking spring was here, because that would have been the case if we were hearing these noises up North.
When we go on walks I am always trying to find a balance between letting my children explore freely, ensuring that they are safe (especially the two youngest) and knowing when it is time to return home. Right now it’s a tricky balance. My eldest has a better understanding of nature and has a high endurance (he could stay out for hours). My daughter (almost three) likes to follow the lead of her older brother but has little understanding for the potential dangers around her and gets tired quickly. The baby, well, he just hangs off my back like a baby koala.