I grew up in a small town in upstate/Western New York. When you’re a kid, winter is the bomb — so many things to do, not to mention, the cups of steaming hot chocolate with marshmallows that Mom always had ready when we would come back inside after hours of playing outside, our faces red and wind burned. Winter means ice — our backyard would flood during a brief winter thaw and then refreeze, creating a natural ice skating rink, which meant hours and hours of fun for the neighborhood youngsters and teens. We would ice skate, play broom hockey (until the big kids kicked us off so they could play ‘real’ hockey), or just slide around on our boots. Winter ice is also beautiful when it clings to the trees, creating an almost surreal environment.