Saturday, January 28, 2012


Wisconsin is a recreational wonderland in the winter! It's non-stop skiing, skating, and sledding here during the cold months and there is always plenty to do outside.

Ha, you didn't actually fall for that, did you? That might be the official spiel from the Wisconsin Department of Tourism, but very few people here prefer winter to summer. I grant you, there are the occasional individuals who think the fact that you can cross country ski in the winter somehow makes January somehow more enjoyable than June, but those people have had their neural cortexes damaged by extended exposure to severe cold. Very sad.

Here's one bummer about winter: Chilblains!

See those red spots on Stella's poor hands? Those are chilblains, which happen when exposure to the cold bursts capillaries, usually in your hands or feet. You don't hear the Wisconsin Department of Tourism mentioning chilblains too often. (New possible tourism slogan: "Come for the great ice fishing, stay for the damaged capillaries!" If that won't draw tourists from Illinois, nothing will.)

Chilblains are annoying but fairly harmless and go away by themselves. However, this means my beautiful daughter is damaged goods and we probably won't be able to get much of a dowry for her. Maybe just one cow.

Now, I don't want to make a Wisconsin winter sound like a total bummer. Winter can be fun, but in my opinion Wisconsin totally overdoes the winter thing. I mean, I like to skate as much as the next person does, but it's hard to get your kids excited about hitting the pond when it's 8 degrees out. And the amount of time and resources that must be devoted to getting the kids dressed in their winter coats, snowpants, mittens, etc, is positively obscene. Everything would go much more smoothly if we could have winter in, say, May.

Here's some proof that we actually do go outside on occasion in the winter and recreate:

See? We ice skate. If there is a more wholesome activity than ice skating, I do not know what it could possibly be. However, I am an extremely unskilled skater, and when I am with Stella I spend most of my time trying to convince her to not hold on to me for support, since with her flailing she would likely bring us both down. Stella loves skating -- for about 15 minutes. Then she makes a beeline back to the warming hut and tries to get me to buy her hot chocolate.

We did not get hot chocolate afterwards. But we did go out for pizza. Here are two incredibly good-looking people waiting for their pizza:

So I guess winter isn't so bad after all, at least not if it means you get to go out for pizza afterwards. And I am fully confident that once Stella's hands heal, we'll be back up to a two-cow dowry.

1 comment:

  1. Whenever we try to recreate in the winter weather Ian starts asking why we don't live in Florida. Kids sure can cut to the chase. Congrats on getting out to skate. We like the idea, but plan to wait until next year hoping it will be easier when they are 4 and 2. I'm not holding my breath.