Saturday, March 3, 2012

Everyone Should Have A Snow Day

I woke up before the beeping of my cell phone told me it was time to rise; wondering. Did it happen? Were the predictions correct?

I crept into the kitchen, turned on the coffee maker and reached for my favorite mug. While my pot of vigor brewed, I poured cream into the mug and heated it in the microwave oven. A slight impulse told me to peek out the window, but I ignored it. The surprise would be ruined. When the final puff of steam whooshed out of the coffee maker, I mixed the black liquid with the cream and watched the white froth rise to the top. After taking a sip, I went into the living room. It was time.

I turned on the TV. When the commercials ended and the news began, my eyes shifted to the bottom of the screen--the crawl area where all of the school closings are announced because of inclement weather. The alphabetical scan was on the "N's" and I had to wait for the "A's." My lips tightened and swallowing became more difficult.The names of school districts scrolled along and the newscaster said something about treacherous roads--a good sign.

Then, I saw it. My school's name in bright yellow letters. It was officially a snow day. I jumped up and shouted, "Yes." In that instant, I felt like a kid again. Nature had just handed me the gift of a carefree day. A day where everything I had planned was canceled--no primping, no commute, no meetings, no rushing around.

I pulled the sash on my robe a little tighter around my waist and clicked off the TV. I picked up my coffee mug and went into the den where there is a big picture window. I curled up on the couch and watched the dawn turn into day. A day where thousands of snowflakes flew out of the sky making the world seem like a peaceful place. No cars or people buzzing about, just a quiet, white, animated canvass. I stayed there for awhile.

View of my backyard at dawn during a snowstorm.

My husband grumbled a bit as he headed out the door to confront the slippery roads and traffic. I did feel guilty, snug under a blanket with my hands wrapped around my coffee mug, but it's not my fault. Yes. Snow days are one of the perks of working for a school system. I believe all companies and agencies should offer these lighthearted days to employees as part of their benefit package. Let all share in the joy of  an unexpected time out from "the plan." The result would be refreshed workers, less car accidents, unanticipated family time--you know, one of those win-win-win deals.

Start the buzz of implementing official snow days in your workplace. How do you think your employer would react?  If you don't get snow where you live, what type of weather causes everything to shut down?


The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey, a beguiling story about love, loss and hope. It was selected by Amazon as the Book of the Month Selection in February 2012. I haven't read it yet, but will buy it. Watch the trailer below:


An oldie that will never die, A Marshmallow World. Here it's sung  by Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra - very funny:


An excerpt from The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards:

“On an impulse he went into the room and stood before the window, pushing aside the sheer curtain to watch the snow, now nearly eight inches high on the lampposts and the fences and the roofs. It was the sort of storm that rarely happened in Lexington, and the steady white flakes, the silence, filled him with a sense of excitement and peace. It was a moment when all the disparate shards of his life seemed to knit themselves together, every past sadness and disappointment, every anxious secret and uncertainty hidden now beneath the soft white layers. Tomorrow would be quiet, the world subdued and fragile, until the neighborhood children came out to break the stillness with their tracks and shouts and joy. He remembered such days from his own childhood in the mountains, rare moments of escape when he went into the woods, his breathing amplified and his voice somehow muffled by the heavy snow that bent branches low, drifted over paths. The world, for a few short hours, transformed.”


  1. I hoped you enjoyed every minute of it. Where I come from - Cape Town in south Africa - there is no such thing as a 'snow day'(more's the pity) because I read your post and see your pic and know I am missing out on something special. I always enjoy reading your posts. Although a stranger, you are a joyful interlude in my week. I also loved your post on the lake. Please don't stop writing.
    Gwynneth White

  2. Thanks Gwynneth. I'm happy you enjoy the post each week. I love connecting with people from around the world. It's a bit amazing to me. Rumor has it that South Africa is absolutely beautiful. I hope my travels take me there someday. ~ Peggy

  3. Hi Peggy,
    I enjoyed your blog today.
    Thanks for the nice comments you made on Pat's blog about her review of my novel, "Splattered Blood." I hope you do get a chance to read it and that you enjoy it.

    PS Please stop over at my blog and say hi.

    1. Looking forward to reading your novel. It's on my list of books to download. See you on your blog...Peggy

  4. Peggy, I loved snow days growing up in NH. It was a nice break from the cold and school! I love the set up of your blog and your picks are so relaxing. :)

    Just wanted to tell you were my winner at the Writer Limits and I need you to email me so I can send you the prize. Send me an email at


  5. I loved the build up of this post...I mean, we could sorta guess what was going to happen, but we (like you? who refused to look out the window too soon, even though you had an idea of what you'd find?) got to experience each step of the excitement and relief and joy you felt. That was awesome.

    And I'm going to try making my coffee they way you described it...while java is definitely divine, you made it sound even more so.


    1. I have say it again--snow days are one of my favorite things. They are the best and the coffee really is good with the milk/cream heated first. Thanks for stopping by.

  6. This post struck a special chord with me. When I was practicing clinical medicine, snow days were particularly depressing for me, as I was considered essential personnel and had to make it in to the hospital no matter what. Everyone else I knew was snuggling back under the covers except me, and the added stress of a dangerous morning commute did nothing to improve my day.

    Now functioning as a consultant, I am part of the world that is "allowed" to stay home when the weather is dangerous outside. Last year we had a four day ice storm, and were literally trapped inside for 96 hours. All my assignments naturally were cancelled, which meant I could just stay home with my husband. We felt almost naughty, like we were getting away with something and at any moment the Weather Police were going to show up and drag us into work. People grumbled about it for months afterward, but personally I thought it was great.

    Thanks for your thoughtful post!


    1. Hi Lumi ~ The educational system gets a lot wrong, but snow days are something they have gotten right for years, seriously. Unless it's a life or death situation on the job, people should not be on the roads during ice storms, snow storms, tornado warnings, hurricanes, etc. Stay home. Stay safe. Banks, restaurants, government agencies, etc. would survive even if they told employees to take a day off when weather is extreme. A side benefit is, workers would return the following day (or two) feeling refreshed and respected. That would result in a higher level of performance. I just don't get some things. I appreciate your thoughts and hope you stop by again...Peggy

  7. Hi Peggy,

    I live in a place called Ogmore Valley and yes it is as quaint as it sounds. When it snows people go crazy and everyone rushes to ring their boss to tell them that they cannot make it into work. The only problem is, some of them do! Given the fact that we are such a small community it is quite easy to weedle out the skivers from the hard working conscientious sorts. I think because I hated my job so much I have to put myself down as a skiver!

    Keep up the writing it is beautiful.

    Lee Davy