cold mornings and warm fires

When I was going on seven years old, my family moved to Craig, Colorado, which is next to Steamboat Springs in the mountains. The summer felt like it lasted six weeks, and once the snow started it felt routine to have a consistant three feet on the ground all winter. I remember that when the snow would start, Mom would have lots of shoveling to do throughout the day to keep on top of the accumulation and keep the roof clear. She was in great shape from all the exercise that provided, and the three of us girls learned to play quietly inside. She baked a lot in the winter, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin bread in November, sugar cookies that we decorated with colored sprinkles in December.

Now when the snow comes, so does my craving for oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and my compulsion to bake. The cold is beginning to set in here, especially in the mornings, and I am nervous. The cold is not good for me, nor the dark waking hours. My unreasonable hunger has begun this week, as though my body has forgotton evolution and progress and thinks I need extra insulation. It's not even my regular hunger. I'm craving things like meat and potatoes and Irish coffees. I'm one of those people who can never get warm and stay that way, so I routinely wear two pairs of socks and huddle under my down comforter even during the day.

My soul gets colder and lonelier too, and I just hope I can press in to the warm fires of family and friendship enough to keep the chill away. I do not want to stay sad.