Our family loves winter. Snow is awesomely-wonderfully-fun and versatile. You can use it for snowball fights, skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, and snow angels. But most importantly, you can use it to build.
From the time our son was barely able to walk, my husband Dave was out there building forts (Who’s the bigger kid, eh?) Afraid of collapsing tunnels, a real danger that takes the lives of a few children each winter, my husband diligently builds a wood structure upon which he piles snow. It started small in the early years. Really small. But somehow, it has gotten out of hand over the last few years.
Let me introduce you to The Beast on Our Front Lawn, otherwise known as the ultimate snow fort.
Thankfully, the skies eventually open up giving us a little of the white stuff masking some of the beast’s hideousness! Now this is a big structure requiring significant amounts of snow to cover it. My husband used to tirelessly shovel for hours attempting to pile the snow and render the structure safe enough for all of the neighbourhood children to climb and slide on.
But that wasn’t enough for my husband. He called in the heavy machines…seriously, check out the picture.
Why does my husband go to all of this trouble you ask? So that he and my son can spend a one-night-sleep-out in the fort. Winter camping of sorts.
The week leading up to the sleep-out, there is a flurry of preparation. Patch all of the holes in the ‘walls’. Make sure that there are suitable pieces of cardboard or plywood to cover the entrance. Contact friends with winter “gear” like ground covers, sleeping mats, winter sleeping bags, sleeping bag liners. I kid you not, there’s a whole lot of stuff needed to make this sleep-out possible!
My husband strings white Christmas lights inside the fort to set the mood. They pick a movie, make some popcorn and hot chocolate and head out for their annual one-night-sleep-out.
So, Dave and my son are eagerly waiting for the weather to be just right. They’re discussing movie selections. There can’t be too much planning for such an undertaking.
Up until now, I have chosen to sleep cozily in my bed by myself *ahhhhh* while they freeze their butts off. But this year, my husband built an extension (You think I jest?) I have now heard the dreaded words from my son, “Mom, there’s lots of room for you too.” How is a mother to refuse such an offer? What do you think? Should I suck it up and take one for the team!?
You might be interested in another fort we built last winter…