The Snowman

“Look Daddy – it’s snowed!”  The children ran around the kitchen demanding to be allowed out in the snow.

“OK kids, let’s get some warm clothes on and go outside to make a snowman”.

Everyone rushed around finding coats, scarfs, gloves and wellington boots.  Soon, everyone was ready to venture out into the virgin snow.  The air was crisp and the sky clear and blue.  The sun shone and the snow glistened.  It was a perfect morning for building a snowman.

slideshow_978530_DSCF6434“How do we build a snowman Dad?” said the eldest.

“Easy – just start with a snowball and keep rolling” shouted Dad who was already gathering snowballs.

The children began to roll their snowballs and added them to Dad’s snowball and eventually, they had created a large snowball that they were struggling to push around the garden.

“That’s the body”, said Dad.  “Now let’s start again with another snowball for the head”.

The children rolled snow around the garden again – not worrying about how to do it “properly” or “efficiently” – they simply had fun and before long, the head was formed.  They lifted it onto the body of the snowman and suddenly, they could see the form taking shape.  The eldest went back to the house where mum handed her a carrot and a scarf.  She took these to Dad who placed them onto the snowman.  They found some stones from the garden and made eyes and a smile.  Sticks were selected and created arms and a hat was found from the house to finish off the snowman.

And there he was.  The goal of building a snowman had been achieved.snowman

The family trudged indoors and removed their coats and gloves – all covered in snow.  Hands throbbed as they began to heat up and faces glowed with the joy of spending the morning building the snowman.  Laughter filled the room as they recounted to Mum how they had thrown snow at Dad.  Warm drinks followed and it was time to rest.

Outside, the snowman stood triumphant.  He had been built.  But something was happening to him already.  The carrot began to slide from his face, and the stones fell to the floor.  The sticks fell from his body and the head began to tilt to one side.  Suddenly, it rolled to the floor.  As the sun shone down on the brightest of days, the snowman melted.  Within a few short hours, he was gone…

But inside the house there was a hub of conversation.  The children continued to speak of the morning building the snowman.  And years later, long after the snowman had disappeared, they would remember the day they built a snowman…

Be careful about how much your focus on your goals.  Goals are an “outcome” and soon after achieving them, the sense of achievement can fade or melt away.  But the memory of striving for the goal, the successes and failures along the way and the joy and sorrow of the journey, is what you will remember.  Success is not the achievement of worthy goal.  Success is experiencing life along the way, capturing every moment and living in the present.  Be careful not to let your life slip you by as you wait for happiness to arrive in the shape of a snowman….