Growing up in northeastern Pennsylvania, we lived very close to a snow belt, which blew lots of snow east from the Great Lakes. We would be covered in snow and usually lots of it. I learned early how to safely deal with the nuisances of winter weather, and enjoyed plenty of school closings due to the snow. I am sharing my knowledge not as an expert, but as one who has been there – done that.
Parents dress your children in layers of clothing for some outdoor fun; it’s the layers, which will protect the children the best. Two or three pairs of socks helped to keep toes warm, and made the boots fit more snuggly. If our mittens were still wet from the time, we played outside earlier that day a few pairs of socks helped to keep our hands warm. Of course, after a few snowballs we packed to toss at the boys in the neighborhood, the socks would be wet but we did not care.
Socks, mittens, hats, and clothes were laid over the clothes bars setup by the wood stove to dry for the next time while the coats were hung behind the stove. The nice heat not only dried everything within hours it also made them toasty warm when you needed to put them back on to go play some more.
The heat from a wood stove is dry so if you have a wood stove it’s always a great idea to keep a pan of water on it to add moisture to the house. Many children are as I was in my own childhood, and the dry air causes nosebleeds. The thing they say about an ounce of prevention really is a good thing here.
The only time there was not a pot of water on the stove adding moisture to the house was when there was a big pan of homemade soup cooking. This hot soup not only warmed our hands as we held steaming bowl but warmed out tummies as well. My dad was a whiz (still is) at creating wonderful homemade soups that were hearty and good for you as well. Sometimes it was ham, turkey; chicken but at times it was pork or venison stew. He would toss in vegetables, noodles, or potatoes and it was a wonderful lunch or supper that night. Mom also cooked on the wood stove but she made the pots of chili that smelled so wonderful.
At those times when the power went out when we were snowed inside, there were plenty of lanterns, and small battery operated Coleman lamps to see by. We played cards, and some board games by this unnatural. We even sat down to a hearty dinner of homemade soup or stew that mom or dad had prepared on the wood stove all day.
The days, which found us snowed in, were wonderful and they did not seem to happen nearly enough for us kids. This is because my parents kept us busy with spending time out in the sunshine and also making sure, we did our daily chores.