When Mother Nature drops a foot of snow on you, the logical next move is to build a snow fort.

Most of Michigan started off the week with a new, thick blanket of snow on the ground. Genesee County saw anywhere from 8 inches to more than a foot of snow fall during the storm. Schools were cancelled on Tuesday, and police were advising everyone to stay off of the roads. That meant we were all at home with plenty of snow, and not much to do. In my book, that screams two words: Snow Fort.

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I have to admit that I love being outside in the snow. I know this might sound strange to some people, but I love it when we get hit by a huge snowstorm. As a kid I remember waiting for the plow to come and build up snow banks so we could eventually tunnel through them making snow forts. Even though I am far from a kid now, I still love to be outside playing in the snow.

My kids are right on the edge of being to old to dig through snow banks with their dad, but luckily they decided to humor me this week. Remember that there is no such thing as being too old to build snow forts, especially with your dad!

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The first step is always the hardest, and that's piling the snow up in one place. If there is any activity that reminds me what my age really is, it's shoveling. Luckily both kids helped out, and in about an hour, we had moved the snow from the driveway into the yard. We had a snow bank more than big enough to build a big snow fort.

If you've never built a snow fort before, let me give you the simplest rules that I possibly can.

  1. Pile up as much snow as you can. It's best to get it about 5 feet high and cover an area about 8 t0 10 feet.
  2. Pack the snow down with the back side of a shovel, and then pile more snow on. This helps to ensure that your snow fort won't collapse while you're building it.
  3. Start digging into the bottom of one side of your snow bank, and have someone else start digging from another point in the snow bank.
  4. DIG FROM THE BOTTOM UP. This is key because it allows you to make more room inside your snow fort, and keeps it from falling on you.
  5. Hollow out as much as you can without it falling on you.

There is one moment in any good snow fort that I love the most. It happens when you and the person that is digging with you connect your tunnels. You can hear each other digging when you are inside, but the moment you break through, and see each other is the best.

I know this sounds cheesy, but that has always been one of my favorite memories of building snow forts as a kid with my brothers, and it will always be one of my favorite memories of building snow forts now with my kids.

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When we finished this snow fort, we were all frozen but the feeling of accomplishment was enough to keep us warm. We built it big enough for our dog to come in, even though she didn't love it (as you can see in the picture above).

Just remember that you can sit inside and complain about the snow any day of the winter. You can stay on the couch and wonder why every day feels like it's just the same day on repeat. You can complain about the state of the world until you're blue in the face.

OR

You could put your "important responsibilities" on hold for a few hours and go build a snow fort.

I hope you realize that the most important thing you can do right now is to make memories with the people you love. I don't care what it is that you choose to do, just make sure you make it a priority to do it. Work, life, arguments, responsibilities, deadlines, and whatever else will all still be there tomorrow. Today is what matters most.

 

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