Our holiday weather hasn't been inspiring--though clouds and intermittent drizzle are easy to bear compared to the upheavals of storm that have descended on other parts of the country.
Our Christmas dinner was at 6 pm next door with our family, then home to sit by the fire until bed time--the latter perhaps sounding dull to anyone of lesser years!
My contributions to the meal weren't laborious--two pies, a coleslaw created from a garden-fresh late cabbage, smoked turkey.
Yesterday J.'s cousin and her family were able to make another visit from their temporary quarters just over the Tennessee line.
[They have stayed with their older son since the memorial service held for their younger son several weeks ago at his military base in Florida.]
I've learned not to stress over meal prep for guests, especially when I don't know the exact time of arrival.
I dashed up to the market for slicing tomatoes and a pound of deli roast beef, some good provolone cheese. This, with smoked turkey became a 'make your-own-sandwich' buffett. The herb bread was still warm from my oven.
I made soup: onions and garlic sauteed in olive oil, 2 cans of chicken broth, 3 qts of home-canned tomatoes, 2 of which I buzzed in the blender. I added a bay leaf, sea salt, coarsely ground pepper, home-grown parsley and basil which had been dried from our garden. I also threw in a scant handful of tiny star pasta to give the soup more body.
I happily report that the meal
was relished by all--coffee or tea for those who wanted, a berry pie to finish.
Rain drizzled down for part of the day, turning to wet flakes of snow for about 10 minutes.
It was after dark when we sent these dear folks on their way with many a hug.
Bobby McGee tucks up on a quilt after his rambles outside in the damp.
We have puttered today.
There is no need to cook with good food still on hand.
The house is reasonably clean.
Laundry has been done.
In spite of the chilly dank temperatures the cats have thought they should go in and out as usual.
Not liking the draught from the sliding door set ajar, we have slavishly been letting cats in and out.
Teasel has plainly wanted my rocking chair by the fire. After her forays into the yard she has come back to wheedle with all her charms: chipper 'meows', the appeal of her big blue eyes. She has condescended to spend some time in my lap, purring, a warm and beloved presence around whom I have juggled my book and my mug of green tea.
When I abandoned the chair to attend a few things in the kitchen, my place was immediately appropropriated.
I've just told her that I intend to reclaim my spot.
You can see that she is unimpressed!
The book calls me; I shall brew another mug of tea.
J. has brought in several armloads of wood.
We are cozy and content as the grey day moves toward a chilly night.