Getting outside in the dead of winter isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. When the snow piles on and temperatures are frigid, a nice spot by the heating vent or the fire tends to be preferable. However, a pair of sisters in Michigan decided not only to go outside in that type of weather, but also to spend more than a week out there as igloo architects.
Stephanie Newman and her sister Lisa live in Macomb County, Michigan, where the cold weather can drag on. Stephanie, who quit her job due to COVID-19 to home school her kids, was looking for ways to get her family outside. When Lisa decided to tackle a rainbow igloo, Stephanie and her kids jumped on board.
Stephanie told WXYZ in Detroit, “I know a lot of people like to hunker down including myself, but it’s just so nice to get outside. I’m not one for the cold typically, but we had a blast, we really did.”
The sisters made the igloo with shoe storage containers from Target. They filled a set of the containers and let them freeze before laying the slabs together with a mixture of snow and concrete. As they did this, they let the next set freeze. Stephanie’s children, 10-year-old Harper and 4-year-old Ethan, were no slouches when it came to the effort, either. Ethan hauled snow and bricks to them with his sled.
They posted their progress on the Facebook group Rainbows over Michigan. It turned out that the experience wasn’t just making them smile. It was having an impact on the community.
Stephanie says, “It’s interesting, it just started out as a project to keep the kids busy, get them outside… all of a sudden, it was garnering a following on Facebook. We realized it was making people smile, which who doesn’t need a little of that right now?”
It took them eight days and 450 bricks to finish the igloo, which ended up being 12 feet across and six feet tall. They also had thousands of likes, hundreds of comments, and plenty of encouragement from the Facebook group. Stephanie decided to let neighbors and loved ones come and check it out, with appointment-only visits to keep things safe due to COVID-19. Anywhere between four and ten people stopped by each day. There was only one thing Stephanie asked for in return.
She wrote on Facebook, “We have dubbed this igloo the ‘2021 Igloos of kindness!’ We are encouraging those who come visit or anyone reading to complete one random act of kindness to anyone. Maybe donate a buck to a dog rescue… write a card to a nursing facility. Shovel a neighbor’s walk. The possibilities are endless and only bound by your imagination. How can we help another person out today?”
With spring just around the corner, the igloo will likely melt away sooner rather than later. Stephanie isn’t too worried about that. She says she has the pictures to remember the fun she had with her family and she hopes her kids will remember it fondly.
Those on the receiving end of the random acts of kindness will remember it fondly, too.Whizzco