London is cold today.  It’s been cold enough to see your breath for a couple of days now, and the smokers outside the pubs have started to hop and puff at the same time.  But this morning, snow is falling on Big Ben, and Westminster Abbey, and the Royal Albert Hall that I can see around the corner from where I sit.

Want to know why it’s started snowing? No, it’s not frozen precipitation.  It’s because two Canadians are coming here for the first time in our three-month, nearly-over stay.  We made both of them with handy tools you have around the house.

Neither Jonathan nor I have seen our  daughters, Jessica and Hannah, since the end of September.  Anticipation has grown like a wave of excitement that flows over the  flotsam and jetsam of misunderstood e-mails and missed phone calls and misunderstandings and sends them out to sea.  Over the last weeks my attitude has changed from “I don’t miss them much at all!” to “What must I do before they get here?” to “I don’t want to do anything until they get here.”

I have never spent this much time away from them.  I have loved my time here, so the wave of excitement is both a surprise and a welcome relief. Soon we’ll be negotiating who gets to be the Woman in the room again. Soon I will be reminding them to pick up their dirty dishes.  The tide goes out, the tide comes in, for young adults, and parents try to understand the flow.  Meanwhile in London, the snow falls.  And in cities all over,  this holiday season, mothers and fathers will keep an eye on what the weather blows in.