07710 172976 sue@valuesliving.com

It’s a long time since southern England has had ‘proper’ snow in December. It must be at least 5 years, as we have no record of the faithful 4+ year-old canine having previously experienced snow. He is loving it, by the way – there is clearly a different quality to the usual sights, sounds and smells.

Throughout the day (it is still snowing, 8 hours in) there have been cancellations. Christmas lunch with friends and carol services; school is closed tomorrow, music exams may be cancelled or postponed.

I am intrigued by the myriad responses I am witnessing, including my own, and I am coming to the conclusion – not for the first time – that 21st Century man, woman and child are yearning for space and down time. There is a need for connection and companionship that can be prompted either by a serious health diagnosis or by being snowed in. I think I prefer the latter.

I am sorry to be missing the Christmas lunch, always a happy affair. I am equally sorry about the carol services. I am sorry about the disruption for exam candidates.

However, there is a sneaking feeling of joy and expansion as the sick spouse and I spend the day recuperating from illness, take pictures of the snowy dog, put the house back in order after decorating, make chicken soup and anticipate an early start to the “Potterthon” planned for the Christmas holidays. Another clear day tomorrow means I can complete the tax returns (no, I really am grateful for the unexpected free time to do this!) and write our annual Christmas letter.

What I am curious about is why I had not scheduled in the time to experience and enjoy these nurturing activities? Are we so obsessed by filling every moment that we don’t leave time to enjoy all the things we do? Is everything we fill our diaries with strictly necessary? Who is making our decisions for us?

As we approach the end of the year, I am grateful for this snow day, and the opportunities it provides. Today is for living – tomorrow’s joys can wait till then.