I’ve always been fascinated with weather and meteorology; you know…earth science type stuff. Although being a weather man in front of the camera was never something that had piqued my interest, I thought that measuring data, analyzing patterns, and predicting storms might actually be pretty cool. Throw in a summer storm-chasing gig on the side and I’d be set.
Well, let me just say this: after a week like we’ve just had in central Iowa, I would not want to be standing in the local weatherman’s (weather-woman’s?) shoes. The forecasts for the past seven days regarding two of the most powerful winter storms of 2013 could not have been more wrong.
1) Winter Storm “Q” While this storm actually wreaked havoc on the lower plains; central Iowa actually escaped all but the tail-end of this system. But for almost a week leading up to the event, “significant” snow fall accumulations were hyped and schools and businesses across the region shut down early on the day of the storm. The snow didn’t arrive until after five, and (as I mentioned on Monday) only dumped about 3-4” of light fluffy snow by the following morning.
2) Winter Storm “Rocky” The forecast for this past Tuesday and Wednesday wasn’t anything out of the ordinary. Although the snow had started falling early Tuesday morning, and the last weather report I saw before leaving for work showed an expected 0.2” (later changed to 1-3”) of accumulation by evening. 36 hours later, and thanks to something they called a “St. Louis Low,” we had almost one foot of the heavy wet snow that makes for extremely dangerous travelling conditions. That’s right; it literally snowed for a day-and-a-half.
Rocky lasted so long that grandpa Steve had to come over and do this…
…three times. But seriously, we’re soooo thankful to have our personal plow service on days like these. Have I mentioned how awesome he is? If you’re reading, I’m willing to learn how to use that thing any time you’re ready to teach me 😉
Anyway, I’d call that a swing and a miss…twice…in the forecast department. But, as a friend on Facebook pointed out: you can’t rag on them too much…their job is to literally predict the future, so let’s cut them a little slack.
But that’s all beside the point. The first storm had left the state by last Saturday and at least left us enough snow to fully enjoy with our three cabin-fever-stricken toddlers. We finally had the chance to put those snow suits we bought them to some good, rough-and-tumble use…and for two hours on Saturday afternoon, that’s exactly what we did.
Everything is much more awesome when snow is on the ground, like the swing set…
…and the big empty field behind our house. Who knew?
That’s right: run all that energy out, girls. They must have run back and forth at least six times…enthralled with everything from the altered landscape around them to the crunch of snow beneth their boots.
Snow racing is so much fun!
Of course we also made snow angels…
…and ate snow meatballs and “Snow Pizza”…clearly the highlight of the day.
(You know, that top layer of melt and refreeze that you can carefully scoop out into trapezoids and triangles. Snow pizza!)
All this fun reminded me of the first time we took the girls outside in the snow (almost two years ago to the date) and how much the have grown since then:
As the sun began to set, I noticed six ruby-red rosy cheeks and realized that there was a warm couch and snuggly animal blankets calling our names inside.
And even though the cold began to fade, their smiles lasted all night long.
Hopefully we can get out again this weekend; they girls were already taking advantage of this latest round yesterday with Grandma and Grandpa over at the farm. It sounds like this stuff will be sticking around for a while though…and it looks like there is even another system in the forecast early next week.
And given our recent history, we should probably expect anything from one inch to one foot of new snow by Tuesday morning.