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January 25, 2008

frozen lake

A frozen lake. It is so cold that the lake has 12 inches of solid ice. In the spring and summer we swim and kayak here.

snow shoes on the frozen lake

How about we strap some snow shoes onto our boots and walk across it?

How about we don’t and pretend we did? Isn’t that a great idea? Kids? Kids?

And even though I know that 12 inches of ice is very thick and strong, it didn’t stop me from being completely riddled with anxiety that one of my children would fall through the ice. And equally as paranoid about the fact that I would then have to jump in after them. I hate being cold.

It is so strange to be standing in the middle of the lake and thinking about the fact that you are STANDING IN THE MIDDLE OF A LAKE. ON TOP OF WATER.

snow shoes

We know how to bundle up here. We take our winter sports very seriously. I think we could safely scale Mt Everest with our abundant layering. I don’t even want to tell you how long it takes me help get everyone bundled up.

Really the preparation to go outside could be considered an Olympic event by itself. I would kick ass in this event.

fixing his snow shoes

Making some minor adjustments to his snow shoes, just because.


What better way to finish up a long trek on snow shoes than to dive headfirst down an ice covered hill. Clearly something only the young, the flexible, and those not worried about breaking a hip or knocking out a tooth are interested in doing.

Posted by Chris @ 12:35 pm  

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  1. Elena J says:

    LOL at the preparation for going outside as an Olympic Event!!! I think that’s what I hate most about winter…and it’s so nice as the kids get older and are able to do more of it by themselves.

    Nice pictures!

  2. Wicked Stepmom says:

    We’ve had such a crappy winter here. I’m still waiting and praying for snow and ice. I may just have to see if I can work out some kind of deal with the groundhog. ;)

  3. Michelle says:

    I am so jealous! We have no snow :(

  4. birchsprite says:

    Woah I’d love to see snow like that!

  5. Nicki says:

    Where in the HECK do you live, Antarctica? It looks so cold! We are having an unexpected week of sun here in the rainy city and I am in absolute heaven!

  6. kalisah says:

    That’s nuts!

  7. Amber @ Soggy Cheerios says:

    Brrr!! You’re serious about winter gear. This is our first winter in a place that actually gets ‘cold’ and outfitting everyone in snow gear has been a bit pricey! Looks like your location is absolutely beautiful though! I can’t wait to see summer pictures.

  8. Jenn says:

    It’s almost never cold here in Georgia, so when that freak, snow storm (of one inch) came through, I thought I was going to go crazy. Just getting my kids’ thumbs in the right place on a freakin’ mitten about drove me insane. I can’t imagine doing that all the time.

  9. Fina says:

    does anybody have to pee after you get them all bundled up like that?

  10. Sarah @ Ordinary Days says:

    Where did you get the snowshoes? My kids would love those!

    Chris says: here ya go: REI

  11. Norma says:

    But it looks so pretty!

  12. Stephanie says:

    Its amazing to me… that these pictures were taken in the same state in which I live… yet I have NO SNOW, NO FROZEN LAKES and certainly NO FUN. I mean honestly… its not that big of a state, you think the weather would be a bit more similar…
    we do however have the bitter cold and nasty wind.

  13. Beth says:

    When you first mentione snowshoes, I pictured the old-fashioned kind that look like tennis rackets. (Hmm, can you tell I live in a snowless climate?) But those purple snowshoes on your son look really high-tech! When I was a kid in Chicago, I had the chance to walk on a frozen lake. You’re right — what a totally weird feeling. :)

  14. Mary W says:

    I have to drink hot cocoa after looking at those photos BRRRR!

    chanting to myself

  15. Kasey says:

    Never seen anything like it! (I know I always say that but it’s true!!)
    As a Texan who has never been in weather colder than 20 something and is going to Colorado next week where the weather hasn’t been above 10 lately, I plan to use your advice that you have given about keeping snow out of clothes and being able to play outside longer! (Yes I’m taping me and my husband up!) Because I plan to snowboard for 6 days straight in temperatures that don’t top 10, I’m hoping that with your trusty advice, I’ll at least be able to survive. So with that said I would like to say thanks for rockin and giving great helpful tips on life!! :)

  16. Joy H says:

    WAYYYYY too cold for me! I’m freezing in my SoCal rain and 55*. (I know, shut up.)

    You walked across a lake — are ya nuts?

    Only kidding, sounds cool, but I too would be nervous.

  17. Jen says:

    I suppose now would be a totally inappropriate time for me to whine about the 60 degree weather we’ve having here in San Diego today…

    Sad to say, I’m wearing 3 layers of clothing even to cope with that. Let me say, I have no jealousy over the snow at all. Your pictures are gorgeous, as always, but that’s about as close as I want to get to snow.

  18. Sara says:

    My mom, dad, brother and I used to play Pie on our lake in northern Wisconsin in the winter. We’d make a HUGE circle in the snow, then divide it into wedges, like a pie. Then we’d run around and chase each other– I think it was like playing tag.

    Just thinking about it makes me cold.

  19. peepnroosmom says:

    Brrrrr. It looks cold there.

  20. chris says:

    12 inches of ice is amazing! I get annoyed in the winter because the kids have to wear socks, I can’t even imagine all the bundling involved!

  21. Girlymom4 says:

    This is so cool. I live in Michigan and have never snowshoed. Maybe something I should put on my to do list to try sometime. It looks like it was a great time! Have a wonderful weekend!

  22. bombaygirl says:

    Of course, the first thing I do is count the number of kids, and there’s more than 7. And then I thought, you never talk about the kids’ friends! Any fun stories there?

  23. genpoco says:

    I’m with you on the no matter how thick the ice is, it’s never thick enough. I wish I were brave enough to have us venture out onto our smallish pond - no freaking way. Excellent snowshoes. The Minion needs a pair.

  24. JCK says:

    Wow! Snow shoes are hip these days!

  25. Mary says:

    Okay, so who’s measuring? I live in FL but have lived in snow filled climes (Syracuse and Colorado Springs) but I have no idea how they measure the thickness of ice. Of course, since I was a child when we lived in those cities, I would have taken anyone’s word for it and just danced out onto the ice…….

  26. Missy says:

    Is that what snowshoes look like? I thought they looked like tennis rackets. Seriously. (No snow here, obviously.)

  27. Gettysburg Mom says:

    oh how i miss snowshoeing….they’ve gathered such dust since we’ve moved. i can’t believe I’m envious of frozen arctic tundra pictures!

  28. Rachel says:

    I live in ND & all the lakes here freeze over in the winter. Many people ice fish - drive your vehicle on the ice, put a “house” up (portable, mostly a wind break), drill holes in the ice, drop a line & hope you catch something. The ice is usually about 3 feet thick, that’s how you can drive a car or pickup truck on it. Some houses are considered permanent, but must be removed from the lake by mid February, they usually have wood sides and small windows. Of course you need to have some sort of heat source. (The highs here this week are supposed to be in the single digits above zero & everyone is thinking it’s a heat wave. Wind chills bring the temps easily below zero. Typical January weather for ND and northern MN though!) Another necessity is junk food & beverages. I think the junk food is the only reason my husband can convince my daughter to go ice fishing. I personally fished as a kid, but don’t like it now. I’d rather be snuggled up with a good book at home. Even the biggest lake around (about 90 miles wide) freezes over every year; the resorts rent out ice fishing houses. That’s how they make their $$ in the winter. Here is a link to one if you want to see pics of the vehicles they use to haul people to the houses & some of the fish (http://www.riverbendresortlow.com/winter.html). Maybe a good homeschool lesson about ND or MN for your kids. = ) The lakes are usually frozen over enough to drive on from mid Dec. to mid Feb.

    I love your blog & your pics of your kids are awesome. Your kids are gorgeous.

  29. Lori says:

    Our lakes never freeze like that! That looks like so much fun!

  30. Kate says:

    Those pictures make me cold just looking at them.

  31. carrie says:

    How Fun!

    We love our snowshoes, but don’t get to use them as often as you do!

  32. Cassie says:

    Oh man! Those pics make me cold just looking at them. However, when I was growing up in Michigan, I would have LOVED a pair of those show shoes. SO COOL!!! :)

  33. Kate says:

    dear miss c-
    how do i view photos on flicker? anytime I click on one, It blocks me out…..
    hmmm . my flicker name is kathryne mae. ( my mother, torturing me from birth. Do you think anyone has EVER spelled that name right? ) I used to be able to view in “groups” . Like When i showed my husband the benches Rob built and said
    ” make these!!! and he laughed at me. Hard.
    thanks- K

  34. Anna says:

    For a whole minute I looked at these awesome pics and thought, “Hey! I should take my son snowshowing!” And then reality hit me hard and I realized…I would actually have to go with him as he is not yet four…and I came to my senses! But your kids look like they’re having a blast! ;-)

  35. Isabel Kallman says:

    dayum, those kids are fearless.

  36. aimee says:

    I’ve always, always wanted to wear snow shoes! Maybe I need to come for a visit because around here there just isn’t enough snow at one time to justify them!!

  37. Tammy H. says:

    I wish I knew how to email you this You Tube link, but I’m not very computer savy…….. I came across this hilarious song about having BIG families and what strangers say and thought of you. I found it at http://beboldjen.blogspot.com/ She has the You Tube clip posted. Instead of the twelve days of Christmas, it is the twelve things strangers ask (people with lots of kids).

  38. Ann from St. Peter MN says:

    I laughed out loud at all the responses of “Oh - how cool!”. Those folks were clearly from the warmer climates! I am writing from Minnesota and somehow don’t find it so neat when we don’t get above zero for days at a time! We have avid ice fishing going on here (Land of over 10,000 lakes!), but I think those people are nuts. Just gotta say - Minnesota today is enjoying temps at about 38 degrees ABOVE zero. It will be short-lived, as the temps will plummet tonight and windchills will be 40 degrees BELOW zero. Yep - darn near an 80 degree difference. Pass the hotdish!

  39. Penelope Anne says:

    I’d have a heart attack going over the lake and watching my family do it.
    I die just thinking they drive semi trucks over lakes in Canada.
    I do want to go snowshoeing next winter though, told hubby would be a great outing for the Scout troop.
    Great pictures, and I bet once yur anxiety relaxed a great adventure.
    The Mama Bear