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Strapping my little boots into the snowshoes is always awkward, but within moments, the sinewy, woven winter walkers are almost a part of me. My family is crunch, crunch, crunching through the snow, our heavy footfalls somehow lighter than air as we barely displace the powder. The flakes are packed tightly, and all is quiet on this frigid Sunday morning. 
In fact, nothing even seems to move in the lovely silence, the forest frozen in time completely, hibernating cozily until spring time. The only sound is our snowshoes and the white powder beneath them. Our breath comes out in a warm, ghostly fog, our breathing becoming more labored as we make the ascent to the top of “booty-buster” hill as my father calls it. The dogs have long left us behind, bounding soundlessly through the trees. One of the labradors is white, and so except for a flash of movement, she moves almost invisibly; the other Labrador is black, and so she too blends with the stark, naked trees and dark evergreens. 
The sun…

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