Catching the sun while it’s out

Published 8:33 pm Monday, December 29, 2014

Given its changeable weather, just what to wear is often a tough decision to make in the state of Virginia.

Generally, good advice is to layer, especially in spring and fall.

The past week was a pretty good example of why that’s good advice during other seasons too.

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On Sunday afternoon in Suffolk, though the skies were overcast, the temperature remained in the low- to mid-60s.

From Christmas Day through Saturday, it was slightly cooler, but still comparatively warm, and the sun was out in full force.

This followed showers and storms the previous few days.

Virginia’s mercurial Mother Nature can be a great thing during the winter, especially during the holidays, when one can be lucky enough to have a day or two off to spend it with the family.

It’s a prime opportunity to get outside and enjoy some overdue sunshine, fresh air and exercise. Fortunately, we have plenty of places around us in which to do that.

We spent the past few bright days walking the dog and taking our toddler to playgrounds. For two mostly office-working parents, it was a rare treat to have the time off together and the right meteorological conditions.

Six months from now, the difficulty of predicting what weather the day will bring will arguably offer fewer benefits. Instead of sunshine and warmth after the rain and cold, it will bring the opposite.

Though that’s easier to complain about, there are benefits — like respite from the heat and humidity.

Sometimes the climate we live with can be annoying. It seems that as soon as it stays warm or cold long enough to convince one that that’s how it will remain for the foreseeable future, the very next day is the one when layered clothing really would have been a good idea.

I would say it’s keeping us on our toes. We become more avid consumers of weather reports and better-informed citizens in terms of meteorology.

It’s worth noting that the rain was to taper off Monday night and Tuesday, with sunny skies predicted for Wednesday though New Year’s Day.

Thursday likely won’t be as warm as over Christmas, but we’re plotting another outdoor adventure all the same.

A good chance of rain returns Friday night for the weekend, so we’ll take full advantage of it the dry days while they are here.