In the interest of chronology, I should have created this post before the one below which is relevant to today. I hadn't messed with these photos previously, and am now too lazy to rearrange the postings.
We had our family Christmas dinner December 20th when our niece and her children could be with us. Son-in-law M. roasted chickens with a wonderful raisin-studded bread dressing. I contributed two of the chickens [in uncooked state] baked a Hubbard squash which was grown by our neighbors, and a blueberry pie.
On Christmas morning M and G hosted a brunch, which was our farewell time with Susan and children before they headed across the snowy heartlands toward home.
A girl-baby's first Christmas. [Lest you be concerned, the darts have no sharp points; they are magnetic.]
Over South Pass to Howard and Heidi's on Christmas afternoon. Heidi's Christmas cactus was in celebration mode.
H and H just bought and installed a wood-burning range to replace their pellet stove. It has a bigger fire box than vintage kitchen ranges, so holds a fire for hours. The red kettle sits on the edge, always ready for a cup of tea.
Pudgy is the only one of the cats allowed in the house--the only one with manners. The room is dotted with cozy rugs for the cat and four dogs. The most cherished spot is directly in front of the hearth--which means stepping carefully to avoid which ever pet is basking in the heat.
Howard's new dog, Katie, is terrified of cameras, cell phones, any device which can be pointed and makes a clicking sound. She is a short-haired Border Collie, rescued several months ago from the pound. When she came to be part of the canine family, she was pitifully thin, skitterish and had partially healed tears in her back legs which were perhaps made by being caught in barbed wire.
I unwittingly frightened her badly with my camera when we visited there at Thanksgiving, so refrained from taking any photos when dogs and people were in the house.
Katie allowed me to play with her with her rubbery squeaky toy which is referred to as her "brain." At the query, "Where's your brain?" she fetches the bumpy blue oval, presents it and waits expectantly for it to be tossed.
Heidi's kitchen, although small, is a delightful place of wonderful smells. Chef-quality equipment is used for cooking and baking and for processing game meats.
Chef Piggy is in charge.
Susan instructed me in making these hot mats of folded and layered fabric. This one adds color to Heidi's kitchen.
A wire fence separates the south-facing porch from the strip of garden which is home to various perennials and herbs during the brief mountain summer. The outdoor cats have a heated water bowl and various snuggeries provided for the cold nights. Here Dibble, the terror of mice, enjoys the noon sunshine.