Wednesday, January 28, 2004

SNOW DAYS: The North Carolina Piedmont has been snowed (actually, mostly iced) over since Sunday. Not until today (Wednesday) did my wife and I get back to work, and the two younger daughters to preschool, for part of the day. And Wake County Public Schools are cancelled through tomorrow, fer Pete's sake, so the oldest girl will be parked in front of the TV all day AGAIN. It's the South for you; the towns don't have enough plows or rock salt, so an inch and half of ice turns into a major natural catastrophe.

So there's been some cabin fever and some frayed nerves in the household, but there were some high points, too. For instantaneous parenting satisfaction, it doesn't get much better than taking your kids out to play in the snow, for the first time in their lives, or it might as well be. (We average one good snow a year, and if you're three years old you don't remember jack from when you were two.) The sled starts off, picks up speed, and moans of apprehension suddenly turn to joyful laughter. To listen to your children as they ride a sled, throw snowballs, even as they scream with delight as Daddy slips and falls on his butt on the sidewalk... Joy is the best word to describe it, for them and for me.

By chance, our family got enlisted to take care of HoneyBunny, the mascot for M.'s prechool class of 3-year-olds, for the weekend. (Yes, the rabbit's name is HoneyBunny. This is what you get when you trust a committee of 3-year-olds to decide on a name.) HoneyBunny digs coming to our house, because we let her out of her cage into the screened back porch, and she runs around pretty freely all day. The problem arose when HB's weekend visit was unexpectedly extended to five days: We ran out of rabbit food. My wife had the brilliant idea of calling our next door neighbor and asking to borrow some cat food. Neighbor agrees, and H., my oldest daughter (age 10) trudges next door in the snow and ice to pick up a Ziploc baggie full of cat food and bring it back home. At which time I point out that cats are carnivores, and while I'm unclear exactly what's in dry cat food I'm pretty sure a rabbit shouldn't eat it. So H. has to make another trip through the snow and ice to return the baggie full of cat food to the neighbors.

And boy, is H. aggravated, and I don't blame her although at the same time I find the situation humorous. And she loudly and eloquently expresses her righteous indignation, and I get a joyful kick even out of that.

Dang, maybe I need parallel blogs, one for the political bloviating, one for the kiddies 'n' bunnies...

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