True story: I never touched snow that stayed on the ground until I was 21. It was at Lake Tahoe, and technically it was on a beach, but I still had no idea what to do with this strange stuff. (Pictured on right.)
Growing up in Houston, where I’m visiting now, it gets plenty cold and often rains, but snow? Never. I think once when I was in elementary school some flakes fell from the sky and the city basically shut down in amazement. When I was younger (okay, maybe 16) whenever the sky was white with clouds my father would declare “Those are snow clouds.” Everyone would laugh, but I didn’t get the joke until a good 20 years of my life had passed without meaningful amounts of snow.
There was one exception. Christmas of ’04 I had just moved to San Francisco and started a job at CNET two months before. My rent was 6x what it had been in Houston and between that and some other travel I was completely broke by the time December came around. of course I couldn’t tell my parents, so I had some sort of logical reason why my first Christmas away from home I wasn’t going to be able to visit, and I didn’t. It wasn’t a total wash, I ended up writing bbPress and doing a lot of the work for what would become WordPress 1.5. But that one year I didn’t go back a nationwide snow storm brought Houston its very first White Christmas. My friends Sarah and Jess delighted in rubbing it in:
While these look like innocent pictures, they really stung. I vowed never to miss a Christmas in Houston again, knowing full well that there will probably never be another White Christmas in my lifetime
But now regardless of the weather conditions wherever you’re spending this holiday season, you can at least have snow on your blog! Go to your Dashboard, then Presentation, then click on Extras and you’ll see this:
Check the box, hit save, and you and your visitors will see small white flakes of snow coming down on your blog. (This works best if you don’t have a theme with a white background.) Much like snow in Houston, the flakes won’t stay long on the ground, I think because our servers tend to be a little hot. This feature will be available for a limited time only, on January 2nd it will disappear until next year, but just imagine it as our little present to you, an opportunity to spread a little cheer.
Merry Christmas! Here’s a latin jazz version of Let it Snow to listen to while activating the feature:
Update: As promised, the snow has melted away until next year.