Monday, December 17, 2007
Ahhh, the smell of winter
Advertising campaigns would have us believe that the smell of winter is the scent of cinnamon and pine and crackling wood fires and sweet sweet cookies. But we know the REAL smell of winter. The smell that lingers on way after the last christmas cookie has crumbled and the "cinnamon bun" scented candle has burned away. Wet mittens. That's right. The smell of snow soggy clothing, draped over the heating vents in the vain hopes the furnace will dry them. Mostly mittens, but there are socks and scarves and hats that take their spots as well. For most of the winter our house smells like what a wet dog would smell like if it was a sheep or made of acrylic. We go through loads and loads of laundry, caused by multiple outings which result in wet pant cuffs and require a change of clothes upon re-entry. Wash, rinse, and repeat every time somebody leaves the house. DD is good for many changings, going in and out to play in the snow then warm up inside before going back out to play again. Even with snow pants, and carefully arranging pant legs and liners and boots she still gets wet pant legs. We have yet to find a pair of gloves or mittens she can't soak through in two minutes flat. The wool ones are warmer, even if they are wet, and last longer although I also admit they are way smellier when on the vent drying. If sheep smell like that when they are wet I cannot imagine having a barn full of them. We discovered with Ruby that when pugs come in from outside, until the outside air is out of their fur they smell DOG no matter how clean they are. When snow is on the ground, she comes in smelling less like dog and more like woodsmoke, which I like. If only she didn't feel she has to rub her freezing cold and snowy body along my bare legs when she comes in. Perhaps she is trying to share the joy of playing outside? Or maybe just trying to rescent me? Or at the very least trying to dry herself off. But talk about a shock. Even worse when she comes inside after an early morning flounce through the snow, and DH puts her back in the bed - where she dives under the covers and lays alongside my body. YIKES! Instant freezola. Sometimes she wiggles back up to the top of the bed (maintaining contact between her freezing cold body and my warm snuggliness all the way up of course) to give me a happy and excited "isn't snow FUN?" kiss and snotting. The cats have gone into full scale "heat seeking missile" mode and spend most of their day snuggled in the comforter on my bed or nesting in the throw blanket on the couch. Jasmine's favourite thing is to suck up the leftover warmth in DD's cast off winter coat, which she invariably drops onto the floor when she comes in from outside. Within seconds Jasmine is inside there, purring like mad. And it doesn't matter where it lands either. Yesterday Jasmine was enduring a very bumpy rest indeed, as DD had tossed her coat on top of the boots and boot rack. Jasmine didn't seem to mind at all. I guess Jasmine isn't a princess either. Xena has been even naughtier than usual. I keep warning her that this is NOT the time of year for such reindeer games, but it falls on deaf squirrel ears as she steals bows from pressents and chews ribbons and tries to make off with my pen. It seems like she is everywhere at once. I no sooner disentangle her from my knitting project and she is up on the table knocking things off. I chase her away from there and before I can pick up the items she is stalking through the presents looking for anything loose she can grab. I run over and re-arrange the gifts in a less inviting way only to receive several run by "deadly attacks" that involve a lot of swatting, swishing of tails, and galumphing up and down the stairs. Yesterday I was talking to DH and emphasising something I was saying with a pen in my hand. Instantly she was up on the couch, stole my pen, and was gone in a flash. Dh and I looked at each other in utter shock - it had happened so fast - then burst out laughing. This morning she woke me up by sitting on my chest and placing her cold, wet nose on my cheek. I opened one eye to see she had a self-stick stamp on her head. Which means she had been up to mischief again or Jasmine and Ruby were tired of her shenanigans and had decided to try and mail her to the north pole. Do they have squirrels at the north pole? Because of the snow and wind and the lovely blood pressure meds, I am freezing. I cannot keep warm. At the moment I have on fleece lined jeans (thank you Marks Work Wearhouse), heavy work socks stolen from DH, a knitted tank top, and a fleece blanket around my shoulders. Me. The person who would normally spontaniously combust if she wore long sleeves AND socks on the same day. My lips are blue. My hands are shrinking and my rings keep falling off. And my nose could chill a margarita. Maybe it is a good thing Xena might get coal for christmas. I could burn it for heat!