Growing up in Michigan, snow and ice storms could be expected at any time from late October through April. For many people, these storms mean inconvenience: it’s hard to drive in, it’s cold and wet, and certain places close due to the weather. But these things are wonderful in the eyes of a child. I could not drive, so the icy roads did not matter to me, snow is so much fun to play in, and best of all school might be cancelled! Any time there was even a chance of snow in the forecast I would hope for a snow day. I actually enjoyed going to school, but the chance to have a whole day to play out in the snow was always more appealing.
There were all sorts of myths floating around the elementary school about which snow dance worked best. Some of us flushed ice cubes down the toilet, others wore their pajamas inside out, some kids would make sure they studied extra hard and had all of their homework done to do some kind of reverse psychology on Mother Nature. I usually did a combination of those things, just to be safe.
In the morning, one of two things would happen: Mom would come tell me to go back to sleep, or my brother and I would eat our breakfast while staring at the news channel, hoping for a late school cancellation. When the snow dances worked, the day off from school was not for relaxing. I would always get to work building a fantastic snow fort or snowman while catching snowflakes on my tongue. Sometimes friends would come over, and we would have snowball fights, followed by hot chocolate with mini marshmallows and homemade chicken noodle soup. After a few rounds of playing outside it was time to put our icy winter gear in the dryer, thaw our fingers and toes in a warm bath, and head to bed. And of course, I always did another snow dance.
-Hillary Hanel
Junior Girl
Girl Museum Inc.

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