sNOwPE: A Tale of an Unprecedented Portland Winter (so far…)

January 17, 2017

As I sit here at the start of SNOW DAY #9 out here in Portland, Oregon, I caught the above scene out of the corner of my eye. Yea, that’s Grace. She’s CRAWLING across the kitchen counter to fetch herself a banana for breakfast. A depiction of the mentality that so many snow days brings. Nine snow days in will change a person.

We’ve all lost it. Manners? Social graces? Innate kindness to those you live with? Gone.

Yesterday afternoon, I was able to escape our Portland snow prison for a few hours so Gavin could practice for his upcoming Oregon Battle of the Books event. I’m using the term “upcoming” liberally here – I mean, we hope it’s upcoming, but who knows given this bitch-slap of a winter Mother Nature has inflicted.  Also, ‘practice for his upcoming Oregon Battle of the Books event’ is mom code for we need to see adults and kids who do not live in our own houses (+ wine).

While out, my friend shared that between the holidays and inclement weather, our kids have had five days of school between December 14 and now. FIVE DAYS. FIVE. Holy hell. For kicks this morning, knowing that we’d had a few inclement weather days earlier in December, I went back to check the grand total. Going back to December 7, the kids have had a whopping eight days of school. EIGHT DAYS of school in almost six weeks. And, for added fun…the grand total of school days since November 22 is 15.

So, yea, Grace is crawling on the counter to grab breakfast.

As for the rest of us? Happy to say that Grace is the only counter-crawler at this point. Gavin DID run laps around the living room / kitchen in a loop for a solid 10 minutes yesterday afternoon. Sadly, I didn’t even bat an eye, instead shrugging my shoulders while Kenny looked at me wide-eyed like “what the actual eff is happening here?”. My take? Go on, boy, get it out. Honestly – he wasn’t asking me for snacks, or requiring help to pull on his snow boots, or asking to buy apps, or annoying Grace to get a rise out of her, so I was practically blissful.

Naturally, on top of the snow, Gavin and I were sick last week, following Kenny’s bout with the flu during the first week of January.  We are all enjoying spending so much time in our petri-dish of a home wondering who’s going to pass what to whom next. There’s a game-in-wait in there somewhere – “Who’s Illness Is It Anyway?” or Infectious Disease Roulette or Microorganisms vs. Snowbound People. Positive spin? The Clark family is building up our immune system. #noflushotsneeded #didnotworkanyway

I will say, this has been a great journey of self discovery.  Nothing can battle test your sanity and will like being cooped up in your house for days on end. So, my friends, I’ll leave you with this fine collection of actual thoughts that have run through my head during Portland’s Snowpocalypse…tweet style.

  • From this point forward, I shall be known as Master of All Board Games. Thanks, Mother Nature.
  • New Year’s resolution to spend more quality time with the family? Check.
  • Side benefit of snow? Constant soaking wet floors breeds a compulsion to mop = cleanest floors ever.
  • Thank goodness we had so many practice ‘snow days’ to prep for the real thing. #snowpros
  • Dry January? Nope.
  • My house should really be cleaner since I haven’t left it for more than six hours in the past week. #notadomesticgoddess
  • Adorning kids in snow clothes 20 times a day counts as a workout. #20minuteson #20minutesoff #repeatendlessly #checkouttheseguns
  • Side benefit? My husband is so stir crazy he offers run errands twice a day, minimum #yeaboi #myunintendedbreakupwithnewseasonsmarket
  • Parenting has devolved into Lord of the Flies, Snow Sequel. #ipads #television #answerisyesaslongasidonothavetomakeitorcleanitup
  • Car rides on snowy, hilly roads are the equivalent of a sitting upright plank for me. #fullbodytension #whiteknucklegrip #bunsofsteel
  • Silver lining? Two less weeks of summer camp to pay for!
  • Another silver lining? This storm has freed my Facebook wall from endless political posts. #funnyportlandfriends #inittogether


P.S. Portlanders, my sarcasm and scoffing at our first ‘snow day’ may have caused this karmic boomerang. I apologize, and take it back. Mother Nature, I get it. You CAN and WILL make it snow in Portland. My bad. I am sorry for doubting you.



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