brittant pointe estates snowLet's face it. That whole "winter wonderland" thing is a ruse. By now, we are all pretty tired of the color white and of temperatures that begin with a minus sign. To say this has been a long winter is a gross understatement. And it seems that every weather forecast within the past few weeks involved some manner of frozen precipitation. I don't know about you, but I did not sign up to appear in the movie "Frozen." So, how does one "let it go"?

Short of booking a flight on a southbound airplane or plotting revenge on Punxsutawney Phil, your options are limited. We cannot change the weather; therefore, it seems logical to surmise that all we can change is our attitude.

OK, sounds simple. How does one go about doing that? In my life, I have found that the best approach to dealing with most obstacles is laughter, humor and optimism. Sure, I get frustrated too. However, that no longer gets the best of me. I define optimism as the ability to take a black cloud situation in life and make it tolerable by finding the proverbial silver linings. Some are deeply hidden, but I promise they exist.

Long ago, my aunt gave me a short adage that she had come across. It said, "If there is a cure, why worry? If there is no cure, why worry?" This really struck a chord with me and taught me early on that there are many things I cannot control in this world. However, that does NOT mean that I am powerless. Quite the contrary - I am in full control of how I react to external forces. This choice is mine and mine alone. I have the power to react with laughter, humor and optimism. And I do.

With these tools on your side, you are nearly invincible. More snow in the forecast? No problem. Sure, it can be an inconvenience, but it is not insurmountable. And there are a lot of GOOD things about snow. To start with, it is going to melt. It may not seem like it to you, but it WILL go away. Once it's gone for the season, I can almost guarantee you that you will long for just one more good snowfall.

Another great point - what else can you play in that is also edible? Just make sure to stay away from the yellow variety. Snowfall is beautiful. If you have not tried recently to catch a snowflake on your tongue, I highly recommend you try. It took my granddaughter to remind me of that joy. Take a moment to see the beauty in a freshly fallen blanket of snow.

Using humor to heal and to cope is not a new concept. One of the most famous proponents of this philosophy is Dr. Patch Adams. Perhaps you remember the Robin Williams' movie by the same name. His recommendations for good health: Keep busy doing interesting things; celebrate the miracle of every single day of life; develop many close friendships; play and create often; exercise regularly; eat the freshest foods you can find; live life so fully and completely that if you become seriously ill or disabled, you will have no regrets; and add goofiness to your life.

Albert Camus summed it up nicely when he wrote, "In the midst of winter I finally learned that there is in me an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there's something stronger - something better, pushing right back."

Terry Alburger is the fitness instructor at Brittany Pointe Estates, an ACTS Retirement-Life Community in Lansdale. Email thoughts to