Parenting · Personal

An Ode to Winter

An ode to winter

Photo by Tim Gouw

When I was younger, if you’d have asked me what my favourite season was, my answer, without hesitation, would have been summer. I loved summer, I felt it was my season. I loved the heat, I’d be delirious with excitement when the longer nights set in. I was born in June, a true summer baby. When I first started living with Husband, I’d drag him out on twilight walks to sit in the local public gardens, just so I could soak up the balmy evenings.

These days, however, my answer to the same question would be very different. As the nights have been drawing in and the temperature has been dropping, I’ve started to notice that I am really looking forward to winter. I think I’m the only person I know who has been really happy about the clocks going back, the darker nights feeling like a hug from nature. Okay, that sounds cheesy, but I honestly find the dark evenings really cosy and comforting.

Then, there’s Christmas. I used to hate Christmas. I’ve always just felt a huge pressure to get the presents right, and tend to spend the run up to the big day feeling stressed, not looking forward to the festivities. But this year, things will be different. This year will be Sausage’s third Christmas, but I reckon this year will be the first that she can really enjoy.

Sausage’s first Christmas was a miserable affair. Husband was ill for a couple of days in the run up, and then I started to gradually come down with whatever he had. We dragged ourselves to my In-Laws, determined to enjoy Sausage’s first experience of the big day, but ultimately had to leave early after barely eating anything. Sausage ended up in hospital that night with a temperature of 104 degrees and we spent the rest of the holiday season in bed, miserable, and taking it in turns to go to the kitchen for Lemsip/Calpol/tissues.

Last year wasn’t a disaster like the first, but I think really Sausage was too young to get into the hype of it all. We couldn’t tell her about Santa, she was more interested in the paper that she was ripping off of the presents than the actual contents of the boxes.

Then there’s the winter cuisine. Who doesn’t love a warming stew, homemade soup or a rhubarb crumble and custard? Those are dishes which just don’t come into their own until there’s a biting wind outside and you’re happy to spend a day in the kitchen, if only to stand by the hot stove.

Another great thing about the winter is the attire. If you’re a regular reader, you’ll know that I don’t have the greatest relationship with my body, so the excuse, nay, the requirement to swathe myself in jumpers, coats, boots, gloves and scarves is another huge comfort to me. I can wrap myself up and not worry what’s going on under my coat, ’cause it’s too cold to take any of my layers off anyway!

I’m actually hoping for snow this winter. The thought of going out and making snowmen with Sausage is making me itch with excitement, not to mention seeing the look on her face, the wonder of standing at the window, watching those first falling flakes. I can’t wait to take a million pictures of her romping about in the powder-coated world.

Sausage is a summer baby, like me, and spent most of this summer in her UV suit, in the paddling pool, or terrorising us with the garden hose. I can see that same love of summer in her that lived in me, that same joy at being outside with the sun on your face. But I’ll be making sure that there’s a little of the winter-spirit in her too. Otherwise, there’s so much she could be missing out on.

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