This article was originally written for Positive Tribe Magazine, December 2018.  For your own free subscription, visit today.

This morning the temperatures plunged into the mid-50s as the first cold front of the 2018 winter season blasted into sunny South Florida.  The weather men and women were all a-twitter because the lows and the wind chill were finally something they could get excited about – and YES, hurricane season is still upon us but the Atlantic isn’t showing any late November activity…thank goodness, so it’s their job to get us prepared for “The Change!”

In the dark of the early morning (still not liking this Daylight Saving stuff), the elementary school kids were bundled up with hats and scarves wrapped around their necks as their skinny little knees shivered underneath their khaki shorts.

Deck the halls with hats and mittens,

Fa la la la la, la la la la

High school students played it “cool” by NOT wearing anything that resembles sensible for staying warm by their parent’s standards!  Oh well – they’ll tweet about how “freezing” it is when they take selfies in short sleeve T’s and basketball shorts and then they’ll gather together and group hugs will warm their bones! But NOT TO WORRY – the School District has things under control – they turned the HEAT on!!

Ewwwww, the smell of burning dust off the heater coils.  Do you remember the first time you turned on the heat for the season?  I really DON’T turn it on anymore since what respectable YANKEE (Damn Yankee if you moved south and stayed!) will turn on the heat and actually pay to get warm when it’s a balmy 58 degrees outside and you know by noon the temperatures will rise to 75.  Wow, 75 was summer in Vermont and if we had had air conditioning, it would have been turned on then!

Maybe it’s time to turn on the oven and cook an early bird dinner – be frugal and resourceful at the same time!

Tis the season to cook with chitlins!

Fa la la la la, la la la la


So, how do you transition from 87 degrees one day to a 58 degree cold front the next?

Don we now our long sleeve t-shirts

Fa la la, la la la, la la la

Over shorts and pretty swim skirts

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Here’s my solution – throw on a sweatshirt over my bathing suit and a pair of basketball shorts and head off to the pool!  Swimming will warm me up and YES, of course the pool is inside – even this respectable “Damn Yankee” doesn’t swim outside after October 15th unless the pool is heated to at least 84 degrees and the sun is high in the bright blue sky!

There were about 25 Snow Birds (temporary Yankees) in the pool today and it sounded like a bunch of hens cackling in the hen house or maybe they sounded more like swans a swimming!

“Brrrrrrrrr, it was so cold walking to the car this morning”, said one and another chirped in “Can you believe the blast of cold air that hit us when we walked in the front door?”  It was actually the air conditioning on full blast!

“My grandkids put on their winter jackets this morning.  They were so cute all bundled up!” said another who just returned from Buffalo.

They might have looked cute this morning, but by 3:00 pm the temperature will be up to 85 and jackets and hats will be hanging on hooks in the back of the classroom – out of sight, out of mind!  Funny thing too, when the next cold front comes in, maybe in February, the kids will be looking for their gay apparel and moms will be upset because Little Johnny or Susie forgot all about being cold and the “Lost and Found” bins underneath the front office desk back at the school will be overflowing.

I’m a little envious of the “old ladies” because my grandchildren live thousands of miles away and I’m thinking of all the ways I can make the holidays MAGICAL for them from afar.  Care packages are filled with homemade cookies and sweet breads and an occasional four-wheeler transformer car finds its way into the USPS box!  Tis the season for JOY in a box and who’s going to deny Grandma sending another “little toy” at this time of year!

Once home from the pool, I  threw open the patio doors to let in some FREE, COLD fresh air to get me in the mood to binge watch the dozen Hallmark Christmas movies that I’ve already got recorded!  Nothing beats a good love story with a really cute guy, a smart girl who is visiting her parents for the holidays, snow and lots of music and lights.  Every time I watch them I’m grateful I live in sunny South Florida and don’t have to pull out the shovel or walk to school uphill in the snow, both ways!

So, with Black Friday and holiday advertisements blaring over the radio and TV and little white lights showing up wrapped around the palm trees in my neighborhood, I’m trying to convince my hubby, a self-acknowledged “Mr. Scrooge until Dec 25” that it’s going to look a lot like Christmas the day after Thanksgiving!  It really helps my cause that my daughter is here to help and the temperatures dropped because even his men’s golf group delayed going out to play by 30 minutes so the greens would warm up!

So, tis the season to find joy in your little ones.  Tis the season to be of service.  Tis the season to throw caution to the wind and put up the Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving.  Tis the season to remember others in ways that bring them happiness.  Tis the season to be positive to all.

Tis the season…you fill in the rest!

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