Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Swimming in Snow

For those of you who are new to Chasing Roots...

The Mueller family's annual tradition of playing in the snow while wearing as little clothing as possible began in 1984, when six-year-old Erin and four-year-old Sara donned their swimsuits and ventured across their snow-covered backyard - from the porch to the swing set and back - for absolutely no reason at all. Read the full backstory here.

One might expect such a tradition to become less important - to perhaps even disappear completely, the victim of a slow, painful death from hypothermia - once the children grow up and move out and change their last names, but not this tradition. Read about how my dad, Grandpa Paul, has kept the tradition alive here

I brought this tradition with me into my marriage, and proudly introduced it to my children a few years after that. Read about Will's first swimsuit snow angel here.

A couple of fun videos from years past - including when Will made his snow angel with a cast on his arm (wrapped up in a plastic bag, of course) and when my SIL "encouraged" my nephew to make his first swimsuit snow angel - can be found here and here

It doesn't snow very often here in Texas, but when it finally did back in 2021, we were finally able carry on our tradition here in Texas. We made 

When we haven't had consistent access to snow, we've subbed in a polar plunge (202020212022).


We spent Christmas 2023 in Nebraska, and while the temperatures when we arrived were prime for snow, there wasn't any snow on the ground just yet. A white Christmas was all Hallie really wanted though, so Mother Nature and Santa Claus collaborated to give her what her heart desired...a beautiful snowfall arrived late on Christmas Eve and continued through Christmas day.

On the day after Christmas, I hunted down our swimsuits, gathered our towels, rallied the troops (Tom, Will, and Hallie), and lined up our photographers/videographers (Tom's parents), and then we ran out into the snow to carry on this breathtaking (it literally takes your breath away) and fun family tradition. 

Tom only made one snow angel, but Hallie and I made two each and Will went out THREE times - I think he's preparing himself to head north for college in a couple of years...

Swimsuit snow angels - and the polar plunge - aren't for everyone. But I hope that every once in a while you do something that takes your breath away.

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