Monday, June 1, 2009

Seasons in Florida

Like many Northerners, when we first moved to Florida, I did not believe that there were seasons here. I grew up near Chicago where seasonal changes are not subtle. Winters are cold and sometimes full of snow and ice. Spring is unpredictable, but usually mild, with beautiful flowers. Swimming pools are only open between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Summers are so hot that people loose electricity because of of "brown outs" caused by too many air conditioners running. Autumns and mild, with brightly colored foliage.

The house we rented when we first moved here had a Live Oak in the backyard, which lost leaves all year long, covering the entire lawn with broken twigs and brown leaves, giving it a perpetual late Autumn look. Yet, it was not unusual to have days in January when everyone was wearing T-shirts and shorts.

Now that we have been here for about six years, I have become more in-tune with the seasonal changes here. Yes, Florida has seasons.

Today is the first day of Hurricane Season. To celebrate this time of year, Floridians go on big shopping sprees for canned goods, flashlights, and batteries. We religiously watch weather reports and tell each other stories about storms of the past. For our family these stories are about the several hurricanes and tropical storms that came through here in 2004.


During one of the hurricanes ( I don't remember which one, because we seemed to have been having one every week that Summer), our power went out and stayed out for 12 days. No one complained much about the lack of electricity until the day that Nika's Gameboy batteries went dead. Then she screamed about how much she hated Florida, until DH took the batteries out of his camera and handed them to her. Then she was o.k. again.
On day eleven, a GRU (Gainesville Regional Utility) truck pulled up next to an electric pole around the block from our house and we all went out to watch them work. A little while after we returned home, the girls and I were sitting on the back steps when we saw the lights come on in all the houses behind ours, but our street remained dark. We sat there and sang "We Shall Overcome" at the top of our lungs. Then we sang every drinking song we could think of (It turns out, we know a lot of drinking songs), until the neighbors yelled at us to shut up.

I even found a rhyme that explains when hurricane season is and which months are the worst:

June- too soon.
July-- stand by!
August-- look out you must.
September-- remember.
October, all over.

For Science this week we will be learning about weather, using the following books:






and just for fun:


We will also be testing our weather knowledge with this Magic School Bus weather quiz:

Weatherlizard Game

And doing this hidden word puzzle and maze:

Printable hurricane puzzles


Dawn said...

I hope you stay safe during this hurricane season. I've never experienced one before...and I'm just fine with that. :)

Tammy said...

I love your style of writing...just love it. The whole post was just such a treat to read.

By the way, we LOVED Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. :)

Crafty Crow