A Top 10 about this winter

As I stood inside one of the 80-plus degree greenhouses at Grandpa’s Fun Farm Thursday afternoon, I thought about creating a space on the counter, finding a chair and spending the rest of my day writing from inside the slightly humid, tropical climate.

I’m sure Jolene Nystrom wouldn’t have minded — as long as the watering hose stayed clear of my laptop, and the nutrient-rich soil didn’t scatter across my keyboard.

Many of us would be envious — especially this winter — of a job that would allow us to spend our days soaking up the sunshine even when it’s not so nice outside.

It’s been a long winter for everyone, but I’ve been fortunate to not let it get to me. A visit to Nystrom’s greenhouse, and a recent trip to the Como Park Conservatory in the Twin Cities, has helped keep the winter blues away.

Still, I’ve been thinking about ways to counteract the negativity emanating from so many people this winter. Perhaps a Top 10 list of why this winter “really isn’t so bad” might help.

With a little input from co-workers, here’s my attempt to get readers thinking positive. After all, spring will come eventually, followed by summer and complaints that “It’s too hot!”

Without further ado:

10. At least we don’t have to mow the lawn every week.

9. We don’t have to buy mosquito repellent or anti-itch ointments for bug bites.

8. The fly swatter is on hiatus.

7. Ice-cold water comes right out of the tap.

6. It’s a perfectly acceptable excuse to say it’s too cold outside so you can stay home and do absolutely nothing.

5. Homemade ice cream … need I say more?

4. Those of us who love to read can finally get through some of those books in our collection. (Then donate them to the Friends of the Library book sale!)

3. We can spend an entire weekend putting a 1,000-piece puzzle together and not feel guilty about it.

2. Personally, I haven’t screamed a blood-curdling scream in months because my dog can’t find a single snake to kill under all of that snow.

1. Any day when the sun shines, the wind doesn’t blow and the pipes don’t freeze is a beautiful day in southwest Minnesota (and northwest Iowa).

There you have it … a Top 10 to get you thinking this winter isn’t so bad.

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