By mid-February, winter in Ohio starts to feel endless. If there’s snow, it feels like too much. If there’s rain, it feels like too much. If there’s another cloudy day, it feels like too much.

“Will winter EVER end?” I ask hourly.

We huddle by our wood stove, resenting the fact that we still need it. We cuddle under blankets, annoyed that we can’t just sprawl on the couch without them. We pull the drapes and ignore the drafts, hating them more than ever, because they signal winter’s continuation.

But when my four-year-old squealed (NOT in delight) that there was bird poop on her car door, it was a sign of hope for me.

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