Living in Minnesota, where it snows 360 days of the year* and the sun shines an average of 1.25 days per month*, it is easy to start feeling down. The bed, with its comfy pillows and snuggly blankets begins to look more inviting every day. If you’re not careful, you’ll soon find yourself calling it a day within a half hour of coming home from work* and drifting off into a blissful slumber. When that dreaded alarm clock sounds the next morning, you’ll hit the snooze button 40 times* before finally dragging your cold bones out from under the covers again the next morning.
Yes, winter tends to take its toll (more so on some than others. I think you know which camp I’m in.) So you’ve got to find things that make you smile in spite of the frozen hell that persists outside the windows day in and day out.
It’s no secret that for me, the best weekly escape from the weather is bowling! As I mentioned earlier this week, I scored an all time high of 192 in one of my games on Saturday, which wasn’t nearly as exciting as the fact that I bowled five strikes in a row that game.
And believe it or not, going to work provides a nice distraction too. I enjoy what I do, and I enjoy the people with whom I work. We get along well and share a lot of laughs. Sometimes my coworkers don’t even know how funny they are to me. Yesterday, I saw Jason (not his real name) in the break room while I was heating up some oatmeal for breakfast and he was pouring himself a cup of coffee. We said good morning to one another, and he absently commented to me, “Oatmeal?”
“Yes,” I said. “It’s supposed to be good for you or something.” And then we each went our separate ways.
Later in the day, Jason and I crossed paths again. I offered a smile as he passed by me, while he was apparently compelled to say a few words. “How’d those oats go down?”
“Ummm… yeah. Good..,” I replied. And with that he was gone. Thank god, because I felt a serious case of the giggles coming on and there was no stopping them. “How’d those oats go down???”
Of course, my kids are an endless source of joy for me. (And I mean that both sarcastically and sincerely.) Yesterday Jake called me at work to voice a few complaints about his regimen of chores.
“I know that I have to do chores so I don’t have to pay rent and all,” he began. “But I’d really appreciate it if you guys didn’t make me do chores that require me to stick around the house.”
“I don’t understand,” I said. “Would you prefer to do the grocery shopping or something?”
“Mom,” he said in that can you please be serious voice. “Dad has me doing laundry and unloading the dishwasher.”
“Yeah?” I wasn’t seeing the problem.
“Well, I can’t leave the house because I have to wait for the dryer to finish and then fold the clothes in it.
“Okay,” I said. “Then get your stuff done and then you can leave the house.”
“Fine,” he said.
“Fine,” I said. I’m still not sure what he was thinking an acceptable alternative would be.
And then there’s Kacey. I walked into the living room this week to find her and Connor each laying on their side on the living room floor, facing one another. (At least an arms length apart, don’t worry.) They were having an in-depth conversation with one another, and while I tried not to eavesdrop as I passed through, I could tell that he was excited about whatever it was he was telling her. I guess I was just so impressed because he had been at our house with her for hours already, and they’ve been dating for months, so the fact that they have so much to say to each other… still… well, it just seems so good. It’s young love, I know. But they seem to have a good handle on this relationship thing.
And finally? It’s Friday. Life is good.
*Facts and figures may be slightly exaggerated.