My one little word for 2021 is grateful. Tonight, I ran to the grocery store for a few items. When I left home it was 4 degrees. When I left the grocery store, the thermometer in my car went from zero to -2 by the time I arrived home, just twenty minutes later, including the time I was in the store. In other words, the temperature is dropping fast! I am grateful to be home, warm and comfortable in front of our fireplace.

I live in the upper mid-west of the United States. Our winters are cold, it’s a known fact. Two years ago we had a polar vortex and temperatures were well below zero for several days at a time. One of our sons was in Fargo, North Dakota at the time. With the wind chill, the temperature was -55! Yikes! That is cold! The temperature without wind child was close to thirty below zero!

2019 snapshot of temperature in Fargo, ND. © Carol Labuzzetta, 2021

I’m not a stranger to these temperatures. Growing up in Western New York, we had both some very snowy and very cold winters. Actually, we had more snow there, probably because of lake effect, than we do here. The sky here is bluer in the winter than in Western New York. For that I am grateful, as well.

Blue sky in the winter is mood enhancing! © Carol Labuzzetta, 2019

I am also grateful that I’ve had some experience with winters that include both subzero temperatures and snow. I remember, once, while I was in high school, we were on a trip to Lake Placid. A frigid blast of air descended on the area while we were there. It was -70 below. No one’s car would start. Whiteface Mountain was closed. We hung out in the lodge. Let’s just say while it was memorable, it was not a great trip. Too, too cold!

The good thing about having experience with subzero temps is that I know they end. Eventually, the vortex will shift and and move back north. It will still be winter for a while, but our days are getting noticeably longer and they will get warmer too.

I think I’ll get out my seed catalogs and dream of my garden. That will keep me warm while I wait, too!

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