Flaky Outlook

When I was a kid, snow was a thing of awe!

Growing up in Fresno, CA, I can recall only one time that it snowed at our home. All the kids went out into the yard to scrape together snowballs, build a small snowman, and have a snowball fight.

All the kids but me. I somehow managed to come down with a cold that day. Mom wouldn’t let me go outside.

Then we moved to San Mateo, near the coast and snow was a few hours’ drive away.

Now I live in Colorado and tend to take snow for granted.

Snow in the forecast conjures up visions of shoveling, bumper to bumper traffic, and fender benders.

I caught that snowflake above last Thursday at Eldora Ski Resort where they hope to open this week! My customer there pointed out the amazing flake shapes that were coming down. They’re tough to capture on a phone camera but they were really cool (literally).

Despite the awesome snowflakes,

I have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea that winter is coming.

The short days and cold, achy temperatures get me down.

I’ve wondered before what advice I would give to my younger self. Maybe I should flip that script.

What would my younger self tell me about winter?

  • “You’re so lucky you just have to go outside to play in the snow.”
  • “If I could afford it, I’d put up a million Christmas lights, and leave them up all winter!”
  • “I bet it’d be fun to go sliding in your car around a snow-covered parking lot!”
  • “Mmmmm, hot chocolate!”
  •             “I can catch more snowflakes on my tongue than you!”

Maybe I’ll listen to my younger self this winter.

I’m certainly game for more Christmas lights. I’ve already had my first hot chocolate of the season. And if we get a big snowstorm, don’t be surprised if you see an even bigger snowman on out front lawn!

For now, I intend to enjoy these next few warm days before it really starts cooling off.

Pardon me while I go get the sleds ready while the garage is still warm…

The Sound of Silence

 

My legs burned.

My breathing was heavy but calming.

I leaned against a stump.

The moment my feet stopped, I felt the profound quiet.

My ears rang with the suddenness. My footfalls had been loud compared with the absence of sound that surrounded me.

True, the silence wasn’t complete. A distant plane faintly hummed. The occasional car could be heard in the canyon far below. But, those sounds were distant and very faint. Bird calls and faint wind song were all that could be heard close by.

I took out my phone and started photographing the view. As I concentrated on composing a scene with a weathered dead tree, Boulder Canyon below, and the morning sun beyond I was startled by a strange noise.

I turned toward the sound seeing nothing but a pair of hawks flying away. Then I realized, it was quiet enough to hear the sound of their wings beating.

I lingered on top of Sugarloaf Mountain for some time. I don’t know how long. There was no one else there and my mind soaked up the silence like a desert traveler soaks in water.

I made it back home before noon and kept busy the rest of the day with typical Saturday responsibilities. My legs were sore but my sole was rested.

At creation, God set the standard for rest – one in seven days. I do a lousy job of sticking to that standard. But, one thing I’ve learned is that my mind needs rest as much as my body does. Yesterday was a good day of rest for my mind. I need more of those.