Guest Post: Holidays Happen…. “Weather” We Are Ready or Not

Reagan is a fellow Minnesotan and has been my roommate for BEA and for the Twin Cities Book Expo.  She’s funny, a teacher…. oh – and she is my roommate for BEA 2011 as well!



Christmas, and many other winter holidays, in the Midwest is always “hit and miss.” It always arrives of course, but due to the fast-changing weather, traditions are a bit hard to keep.

For instance, for Thanksgiving this year Dan and I were supposed to travel to Northern Minnesota (about a 7 hour drive). On Wednesday school was dismissed early due to freezing rain and poor weather conditions. Northern Minnesota was also blessed with 10 inches of snow on Wednesday night. For obvious reasons, we did not make it to Bemidji for Thanksgiving; if we weren’t battling ice, we’d have been battling snow.

Ice, Ice, Baby

Traditions in the Midwest, especially when dependent on weather, are hard to keep. When Sheila asked me to write a post about Christmas traditions, I really struggled with ideas. It’s been several years since I’ve had a “planned” Christmas. Last year the weather was so bad across the Dakotas, my family and I were snowed in for three days in Bemidji. The year before that we made it to Watertown, SD, for Christmas Eve but the weather was too bad on Christmas Day to travel further west for Christmas with my Mom’s side.

When you live in the Midwest, you learn not to plan ahead or get too invested in those plans.  🙂
This year Dan works Christmas Eve (the night shift) and on Christmas Day we “plan” to drive to Bismarck, ND (again, about 7 hours) and spend a few days with Dan’s family – weather pending. We will see what happens. 🙂
One thing I have learned: always be prepared with a great book. Last year my book of choice while being snowed in was Courtney Summers’ “Cracked Up to Be.” This year I have a whole list of books needing to be read, but especially Lauren Oliver’s “Delirium” (2/2/11).
Stop by and see Reagan (and occasionally Dan too!) at Miss Remmer’s Reviews

10 thoughts on “Guest Post: Holidays Happen…. “Weather” We Are Ready or Not

  1. I also live in the midwest and know the holiday changing weather you speak of 😉 I always host Thanksgiving for any relatives in the area which usually turns out to be 20 +. Always a fun time without the stress of buying gifts. Christmas day is at home in the morning and then my sister’s house the rest of the day. Casual, fun and we’d be disappointed if we missed it.

    Psst – did anyone tell Sheila it’s snowing at her blog?? It is at mine too 🙂

  2. I wonder how to get the snow to fall on my blogs? I have several here at Word Press….

    Anyway, I do wish you the best for the holidays, whether you’re snowed in (with a good book!) or traveling. It’s good to be able to “go with the flow.”

  3. Ooh I don’t think I would cope with not being able to plan. I am impressed that you take it so easily. I would feel so stressed not getting where I am supposed to. I love this post Sheila.

  4. I grew up in Illinois so I know how it is with the weather. Actually here in PA it’s best to be flexible too since we live in the mountains. I love your Christmas photo, such a good looking couple, but your pictures of the ice glaze over everything make me shiver. Oh, I dread that stuff.

  5. I grew up on the Canadian/Vermont/New York border. Luckily, we didn’t have such long distances to travel to visit relatives, but weather was still a concern. I spent my share of holidays and birthdays (mid-January) snowed in somewhere. We live in TN now and they aren’t equipped to deal with snow or ice on the roads. Washington, DC was the worst. A couple of inches of snow and things shut down. We have learned to check the weather and if there is even a little snow, forget about traveling. In the north you can travel in much more serious weather.
    I hope you get to do what you plan this year.

  6. You got to love weather and the way it plays with your plans. I hope it’s more cooperative this Christmas and you have a wonderful time! Happy Holiday!

  7. I feel so spoiled and like such a weather wimp out here in California. I don’t think we could ever claim that weather altered our holiday plans. Only an earthquake could do that!

  8. I think I just became happy to live in Nebraska! There have been very few years that the weather has been so bad here that plans had to be changed entirely–must be from being that much further south. My mother could never handle dealing with the disappointment!

  9. I think there should be an official “Christmas Snow Day” in August (which really has no holidays anyway). It would be just like Christmas but maybe with no gifts, or just quirky gifts, or exchanging gift lists or picking Secret Santas. Emphasis would be just on catching up with each other, eating good food, hanging out. No worries about sliding on ice, stalled cars, frozen toes or waiting in long lines with 50 lbs of clothing on. Sort of a No-Freeze Noel!

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