Jan 5, 2018
I miss winter. Real winter.

I miss living in our poorly-insulated house. Miserably maintaining the thermostat at 57F from December to March to save money. Closing off all the vents in the parts of our house that we weren’t using and huddling in one room with a space heater and several layers of clothes. At night, cranking up our heated mattress pad 30-minutes before snuggling under the mountain of blankets. In the morning, mustering up the courage to shower, waiting sometimes 5 minutes for the hot water to reach the bathroom pipes, and plugging in the space heater as close to the shower as we dare (before it’s obvs dangerous) to stifle some of the chilly air. And forgetting to turn the car on 5 extra minutes before leaving for work so that the windshield, which might be covered in a thin layer of ice, thaws.

Yes, Tennessee winters are miserable. But there’s also something about them that’s much more memorable than summers.

There’s nothing like sitting in front of a living room fire on a blistery night, listening to the logs fizzle and crack, feeling the kiss of heat on my face and staring into the captivating, dancing flames. Additionally, enjoying friend and family potlucks (including holidays) make a lot more sense in the winter because the hearty casseroles, soups and butter-ful sides are exactly what everyone needs to stick to their ribs to stay warm. I also enjoy the change of wardrobe from summer attire of shorts, tshirts and flips flops to pants, sweaters and boots. (In my family, we would put all of our winter clothes in a tub between June and October; it was great fun to pull it out and rearrange the closet!)


I miss winter decorations in neighborhoods and on main streets. Snowflakes. Christmas Trees. String Lights.

I miss winter bonfires (the ones that are 40-feet high!). And roasting marshmallows. And snow days (where there’s an excuse to miss school or work).

The summers are certainly memorable in their own way in terms of summer barbeques and pool parties and family vacations; but a lot of the months are so hot that they melt together, figuratively speaking. And maybe, just maybe, it’s force of habit that I forget the inevitable attack of the hungry mosquitoes, the nose-stuffing and eye-watering allergies, and the endless sweaty air.

Los Angeles’ winter is pleasant but to be honest, it’s quite boring. It’s simply cooler than the summer months by about 10-15 degrees. Too cold to go to the beach to swim (though a stroll is nice). And too hot to make soup (unless there’s a couple days where the temp has dropped another 5 degrees …in that case, because of the lack of humidity, it feels FREEZING). Also, people don’t make bonfires out here in the winter! It’s only a summer activity. There’s no such thing as snow days either (obviously), so Spring semester feels REALLY LONG because the only break is the occasional Monday holiday until Spring break, which is really late here because it combines with Easter weekend.

I think what I miss most of all is the fact that physical seasons often match up with spiritual seasons. The dead of winter may feel meaningless but knowing the newness of spring is around the corner makes the miserable cold much more bearable.

Spring marks the beginning of new life.