where is everybody?

Yesterday and today my husband and I walked from our home to our favorite local coffee shop. It’s about 2 miles into town and we walk every Sunday. But because all our normal plans were cancelled due to the snow, we made sure the cafe was open and, like little kids we piled on the snow suits and headed out the door.

When we left the house it was still snowing like mad. It was late morning, 11ish, and although the temperature was cold it was beautiful to walk during the first snow fall of the season; okay the second, but the first – in October – does not count in my book. It was so quiet walking those two miles. We basked in the tranquility of the snow falling and very little activity on the roads besides the occasional snow plow.

It wasn’t until our walk back home hours later that we figured out what was missing. There were no children playing in the snow. Every yard was quiet yet we know there are many children in our neighborhood, as well as in the other neighborhoods we walked through on our way to town. Where were all the kids?

My husband and I remember not only during our own childhoods but also our own children’s time when we could not get enough outside time when it snowed. We would race to get on our  gear and head out the door. Only to come in when we were frozen solid or our parents made us come in. And then we would have our hot chocolate or soup and, the minute our snowsuits were dry we would pile them back on and go out for more!

But yesterday, as well as today, there were no children anywhere. And there were no adults strolling either. At the cafe this morning, the local barrista said we were only her second customers and they had been open for over three hours already.

Are people afraid of the cold? Are they just too busy with all the social media? I know there are so many ways to keep occupied with a ‘screen’ these days that it’s easy to get sucked in. But what about the children? Do they not care about the snow anymore? I don’t see any snowmen on the lawns and I didn’t even see people shoveling. We did see mini snow plows moving the snow from peoples driveways later today. But we used to see kids trying to make a buck…not this weekend. No one.

It frightens me a little because we all need to breathe outside air and get a dose of vitamin D – every day. I hope it was just a freak thing and we just missed the people who were out.

Anyway, I hope your weekend was wonderfully calm and a little playful too. And I hope you were able to get out in the snow a little bit because, sadly for many, tomorrow it’s back to work – inside a building, with a ‘screen’ in your face.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Beth Allen Kintner
    Jan 22, 2012 @ 22:16:36

    Hi Raeleen. Well, yes, I think there are so many other (more tempting) ways for kids to keep occupied. Our kids played their share of video games this weekend, but our oldest got out quite a bit, and shoveled his 1st driveway for money today! The younger two got out today (yesterday seemed a bit too cold, at least for the 2 year old). I am usually out there with them, but chose to take a shower and have some tea instead today! You are right, most of us do need to get out more & have our kids get out more. There’s nothing like fresh air!


    • shakeupyourlife
      Jan 24, 2012 @ 10:30:33

      I’m glad the kids got out some and really happy YOU got some down time too. It can be easy to hunker down with the warmth of the house in the middle of winter and it DOES seem like a lot of work to dress the children in all those layers just for a short amount of outside fun in the winter, but it really is worth the time for their and your health. I’m glad the big guy made some money too!
      Remember my favorite phrase “essential drive”..


  2. Arline
    Jan 23, 2012 @ 09:31:04

    Hi Raeleen! It was the complete opposite in my neighborhood. Jordan and I (unfortunately Ozzie had to work this weekend) were in the backyard trying to make a snowman. Mommy’s not so good at that – but – we gave it a whirl. 🙂 My neighbors kids were outside in their backyard doing the same. Then, just as we were about to go inside I heard laughter from the front of our house. There were kids having a snow ball fight in the middle of the street. They were too old for Jordan to play with them but it was great to watch from the porch! We almost got pelted a couple of times and Jordan was having fun running back and forth trying to dodge whatever came our way.


    • shakeupyourlife
      Jan 24, 2012 @ 10:25:50

      I am so happy to hear this! I know you know how important it is for, not only the children but also ourselves, to get outside and I’m glad you and Jordan had a blast. It makes me so happy to know there are still smart Moms and Dads “kicking” there kids out of the house long enough to realize the joy of snow too; and even better when the parents join them. Thank you for renewing my faith in the 21st century parental units!


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