Dear Curiosity Journal,

Opening my eyes to an achromic landscape kindles childhood affections for snow days and Christmas. The only chroma that punctuates the alabaster page are points we’ve painted, loud contrasts to the pearly canvas. My mind goes immediately to my skis. I’m already mentally gathering my gear. I bundle up and water the sheep and pigs, asking them what they think of the snow. The sheep are anxious to bust out of their manger, as usual, and the pigs are particularly playful, sparing off with each other and spinning in circles. I go straight from hauling water to my skis. When I first bring them out, Balio goes berserk, jumping up, mouthing my skis and poles, tugging on my gloves, and zooming around – good-natured, sportive, a little unhinged, but I’ve learned to brace and block his giant dog antics and raise my serious voice when it gets too intense. He’s a big fan, matching mommy’s energy, and cools his jets once we get on the trail, prancing up ahead, thrashing through the path of least resistance, leaving me a secondhand trail, but doing his duty as the guardian with a big smile. We’re both beaming with our fondness for winter.