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Spiritual Hot Cocoa
by Sherry Antonetti


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Chocolate for Your Brain



Snow Days
by Sherry Antonetti

This past weekend, a snow day threatened. Part of me secretly hoped we could steal a day from the work a day world; a day without errands, without having to nag kids about homework or watching TV, a day we could spend writing friends, having snow ball fights and playing games, having simple meals and experiencing the silence of waiting. The wind howled around our house, it blew over a cast iron grill in our back yard and sent the recycling bin flying. The forcast on the radio gloomed and doomed. The power blinked twice to remind us that it could happen.

Snow stops the world where I live. The cars and buses cannot run their routes with the hills and ice. God’s winter grace covers the soot and the grey and recloaks everything in fresh beauty. For me, the snow is God’s whisper, an effective counter to the world’s shouting. “Stop. Look. Listen to the quiet. Feel your own breath. Be still and know that I am. “

Yet Monday arrived and the lights went on, and I honestly breathed a little sad sigh. It’s not that I wanted anyone’s lives to be harder or colder or to run away to a past time before electricity. It was only the dim recognition that not having a choice might have made practicing Advent easier. Instead I would have to joyfully discipline myself not to allow the TV or the Computer to dominate the day. I’d have to choose to do Christmas cards instead of any list of other things. I’d have to deliberately pick Mary’s path over the traditional Jimmy-Martha-Stewart craziness that so often dominates preparation for Christmas.

We’ve been trying to really celebrate Advent this year, by prayer, by feasting others, by not worrying if everything will be perfect, and still, I occasionally get caught up in what-will-we-do type thinking about the day of Christmas rather than the meaning. My Martha brain starts up: “You haven’t….and the list of things, even good things like Christmas cards and cookies and gifts for the teachers” starts to push me away from why we even celebrate.

The wind still howls around our house and now I’m praying if not for a snow day, for God to cover my heart like snow, rerendering the less tidy parts and make everything fresh and bright. As we continue to celebrate this blessed time of waiting, consider all four weeks of Advent as stolen time from the “real world,” and chose to make each day a snow day spiritually.

Merry Christmas!

Sherry Antonetti is a mother of eight children and a freelance writer of humor and family life columns with prior publications in Absolutewrite, the Catholic Standard, Beaumont Enterprise and the Washington Post. She can be reached at [email protected]. You can read additional pieces from her blog,

© Sherry Antonetti 2007

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