Winters in the south are just like a really, really long fall that doesn't ever quite get to winter. There are hints that winter might just be around the corner but it just never quite makes it. We didn't have to turn on the heat until December and the air conditioning has been known to be on in March.
Thankfully, we been able to return home to Minnesota/Wisconsin each winter and it hasn't disappointed in giving us a good strong taste of winter and what we were missing. I typically go through a series of emotions from "isn't winter wonderful?" to "SNOW!!!" to "how do people live here?" to when we return home "isn't it nice to be able to wash your car in January?"
During our visit we drove from the Twin Cities to Rochester, MN to visit some friends just after a snowstorm had blown through. This was at the "SNOW!!!" stage of my love of winter and it reminded me how beautifully desolate the Midwest can be and how the early Scandinavian settlers must have felt a little bit at home staring out into the white haze on the ground and in the sky.