Saturday, January 19, 2013

Winter Wonderland

 I realized, in the midst of chaos that my life has been the past two months that I never actually posted about my article (which was the original basis for this blog) being published! It is available digitally here: Into the Wild: Using Nature in Occupational Therapy Practice. Seeing my name in print was definitely one of my biggest thrills. I hope you enjoy the article as well.

If snow was a person, it would be my arch-nemesis. It started in the days when I would have to daily scrape off my car in the dark so I could drive the icy roads to my high school and worsened when I started at a big university that made it necessary to tramp what seemed like miles from my dorm to my classes through the knee-high piles. I've spent much of the time since then trying to escape from places where snow is a common occurrence. Since I've spent most of the past two months in my home state of Michigan, I've actually been quite fortunate in the snow and cold department. I think that this week (one of my last few here, before the next big adventure), my fortune is about to change, which is alright, since it is winter in the north.

Winter brings a lot of different aspects for different populations. For children, snow is yet another great sensory activity. It also provides options for heavy work with shoveling and rolling large snowballs to make snowpeople. For older adults, there's greater risk of falling with icy sidewalks and injury with trying to shovel snowy sidewalks. Winter can be risky venture for children too: sledding and skiing can definitely venture into "extreme sport" territory. So, as you venture forth in this winter weather, be sure to pay attention to slippery weather and dangerous situations. And take advantage of the time for fun in the cold and try to avoid the temptation to put rocks in the center of your snowballs!

If you're not one to venture out into the cold, there are a number of picture books that cover winter, too. And they're some of my favorites: like Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson, The Mitten by Jan Brett, The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats, and Owl Moon by Jane Yolen. What are some of your favorite winter weather books?