Winter doesn't officially begin until Dec. 21, but I do not call the temperature we are having fall-like, so in my opinion, winter is here.
We live in an area where we are not sure what to expect from year-to-year as far as the weather is concerned. I have seen some winters when I did not even have to get out my winter coat. Others included snow, ice and very cold temperatures.
We cannot control the weather, so we just need to be prepared for anything. I did notice temperatures are low even in Florida and really low in the northeast so far this year, so I guess we are not the only part of the country that cannot predict the weather.
Many people are traveling over the holidays, so I hope they all have a safe journey. I can remember a time or two when we traveled to and from Illinois during the Christmas season and once the highways were closed and we had to stop along the way. The older I get, the less I want to be out on the highways when the conditions are anything but fair.
In the 1980's we left Manila and went to Brookland for a basketball game. The weather was good -- and it started sleeting. We ended up stranded in Lake City for a few hours while they got the Lake City bridge clean enough to get across. Again, in the early 1990's, we were shopping in Blytheville. When we went into the store the weather was not bad, but when we came out, vehicles could not get over the by-pass because of the sleet. It was a scary ride home and it took us well over an hour for a 20-minute drive. I was so thankful to get home that I made myself a promise I would not do that again. If there is a threat of sleet, I try to stay home.
Six years ago this month I broke my promise about traveling on bad roads. Our granddaughter, Maesyn, was born in Texas on Dec. 22 and the weather and the highways were awful. We left on Christmas Day. The roads were bad until we got past Little Rock and then it got better. We will make exceptions to every rule when it comes to our grandchildren. That was the Christmas Day we ate canned Vienna sausages and crackers for Christmas dinner.
As much as I gripe about the weather being too hot or too cold, I really do like living in an area with all four seasons. I don't think I would enjoy living where the weather is the same all year around. I'm sure I would have trouble getting into the Christmas spirit if the temperature is 80 degrees.
I have enjoyed the Christmas parades in all of our towns. The weather was cold, but with enough clothes, it was not too bad. Everyone did a great job. There were beautiful floats, decorated vehicles, walkers, horses and much more. I have always loved a good parade have had the opportunity to attend four so far this year.