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Living in southeastern Michigan during the winter is a roller-coaster of different weather patterns, which makes it arduous to plan anything as an outdoor soul. We have seen all four seasons within a week during the usual winter months. I say the word “usual” in a scrupulous manner, as there really is not much that is usual about Michigan winters. I have seen 55-plus temperatures one day with the sun shining, and a tempestuous blizzard the following day, then leading into a spring-like rainy day thereafter. When I tell someone about the seasons of Michigan, the only thing I can truly be certain of is that we have entirely different seasons than most. Our seasons are as follows:
Yep, that about sums it all up for the great mitten state. With that being said, I can never really put away my winter outdoor gear in March or April. I can’t store my camping gear in October or November. The kayaks must always be within reach. You never really know which days you will need which things.
We just had some warm days last week. This weekend, Mother Nature decided to grace us with about 5 inches of snow. I’m not quite sure how long it’s going to stick around, so I’m not sure if we will have an opportunity to break out the sleds and snowshoes. I mean, I remember the weather forecast one day within the last two weeks, they stated, “we may get up to 10 inches of snow…or not.” What the heck is that supposed to mean? It’s times like this that I wished I either lived way up north in the UP or Canada, or further south in Tennessee or Arkansas. At least then, I would have a better understanding of the weather patterns and be able to plan and arrange my outdoor activities. I also have one thing to say to other Michiganders who also complain about how cold it is like they didn’t know it was coming…OUR STATE IS LITERALLY SHAPED LIKE A PIECE OF WINTER APPAREL!
It can get very frustrating this time of year, especially since the weather experts don’t even have a clue of what to expect. Another frustrating thing to deal with in Michigan is the heavy snows. For some reason, the majority of the rest of the country shuts down when Jack Frost visits, dumping thick blankets of snow upon us. In Michigan, that just means that you need to bring a shovel with you in your car for your drive to work. I have an inkling that Michiganders work more than the majority because we don’t have bad weather shut down days. The schools will close for snow days, but not us workers. Nope, we are still expected to show up on time, with bells on.
These are the days that we should be spending quality time with our kids, building snow forts, having snowball fights, sledding, snowshoeing, skiing, etc. We should be staying home making hot chocolate for the family, sitting by the raging fire in the fireplace, telling stories, and playing board games.
I would like to hear from others, in other states and countries, if you have snow days…days that everything shuts down. If you do, what do you do on your snow days? Have you had any recently? How much snow declares a snow day?
I remember how excited I was when I was a kid, hearing my school on the news as one on the list of closures. They should have a list of businesses that close on snow days so as adults, we can be just as giddy as when we were kids. Wouldn’t that be amazing?
I’m hoping to have at least one more full day of adventure and excitement before tax season begins for me. As a Credit Analyst, tax season usually runs from mid February through mid April. It’s a ridiculously busy time for the business that I’m in. It means long workdays and long workweeks. It means not a lot of time available for fun and excitement without giving up sleep. It’s okay though, since this is the time our dealers really need our help, and the company I work for does a really great job taking care of us for working so hard during this time.
There are quite a few things that I am looking forward to when tax season ends. First is my little brother’s bachelor party. I am immensely beholden to be named his Best Man, and I’m planning on setting up quite the event for him. Around this time, The Adventure Park at West Bloomfield will be opening up its gates for the season. I can’t wait to get back there with my wife and bring my daughter for her first time as well. I had such a blast when I visited there with my wife right at the end of last season, and I made a great connection with Thomas, the Park Manager. I can’t wait to be climbing and zip-lining in the trees once again.
Not long thereafter, I will be pulling down the kayaks that are current hanging from the ceiling in my garage, and planning some river trips. I’m hoping I may be able to do one or two river trips outside of Michigan this year with my wife. My daughters are still too little to kayak, yet my soon-to-be seven year old is eager to learn, but I will need to find a youth kayak for her first.
For now, before tax season starts within the next couple of weeks, The Weather Channel website states to expect snow and below freezing temperatures, so we may have an opportunity to use the snowshoes again before everything begins to melt. I’m wondering if my parents would be willing to take my one year old for a day so my wife, my seven year old daughter, and I can enjoy one last hoo-rah before it’s buckle down and work time for me. Here’s to hoping we can swing it.