Now, don't get me wrong. I have gone on record for most of my life that I prefer being cold to being hot. When you are cold, you can always put on another blanket or jacket or hat or dog. But when you are hot, at some point, you cannot take off any more clothes without causing vomiting or rioting or police action. You can die of the cold or of the heat. I don't think either way is better, since the end result is, you know, being dead. So I am not hating this cold snap. It is just strange. I am used to a cold front, as pictured by a blue curvy line with triangles on it, racing through Florida. Temperatures may drop a few degrees - or even get chilly for a couple days. But within a few days things would be back to normal.
Living in Orlando for a long time, we had a few more chilly days - especially in the mornings. By afternoons you are wondering why exactly you wore the jacket, because now you have to carry it home. Here is how my wardrobe looked (and still looks). I own two long sleeve t-shirts (one a former Apple Store teal shirt), three casual sweater type shirts, and a handful of long sleeve dress shirts (mostly with Defender Ministries logo on them). I always considered this glut of long sleeve options frivolous. I would look for opportunities to wear them - convincing myself that I wouldn't sweat to death wearing a sweater when it was 72. My kids were similarly prepared. They had some long sleeve shirts, but not too many chances to wear them. I would put a long sleeve t-shirt under Josiah's uniform polo in the morning and he would gripe the whole way home about how hot he was. His "jacket" was a zip up hoodie. We had to get him a real jacket last month so he didn't freeze.
Well, now these frivolous and excessive stores of "winter clothes" have proven to be woefully inadequate. You get creative, trying to figure out how to make your short sleeve shirts work. But the fact is that we had no idea what to expect with a real winter. This has been downright cold. We had several days in a row with lows in the teens. One morning it was 15. That's just silly. I remember one day that I was in Montreal, the temperature was 9. I never NEVER would have expected a day in Florida to even be in that realm. We've been lighting fires in our fireplace, which is nice and cozy. We've actually had to use the heater in our van. Jackets are now needed every day. Quite a change for us.
To those of you up North, I have so much more respect for you. It is a real struggle to get the whole family together in the morning when it is cold. On a normal day, I just toss some combo of pants and a shirt on the kids. As long as it matches and doesn't have chocolate stains on it, we're all good. But now I have to find something that will keep them warm for the morning, but won't bake them in the afternoon. Gabe is especially challenging. He hates jackets. He hates shoes and socks. He takes his shoes off the second he gets in the car. So when the icy wind blows through the doors, his little toes get all cold. Natalie is always cold anyway, so this isn't anything new for her. She had the most warmer clothes, since she likes blankets and such year round. Josiah will wear whatever you give him to wear all day. I had him in a t-shirt, sweatshirt, and jacket the other day. When it was 19 in the morning, that was smart. When it was 55 in the afternoon, I was surprised he didn't pass out.
Of course, this being Florida, I full expect this to pass pretty soon. And then we'll be back to running the A/C and wearing shorts. That's how it is down here. This may, in fact, be the only really cold weather we get all year. We'll go back to looking for chances to wear long sleeve shirts and set fires legally. The jackets will get stuck into the closet for another eight months. And we'll go back to being hot a lot. But, for now, I need to go get my blanket.