I wonder if perhaps I succumbed to a fit of self-pity in yesterday's post.
In my defense becoming over-tired and chilled doesn't bring out the best of me.
Jim has continued to search out and remedy spots where cold air was seeping into the house. Most of them have been in the lower level--the walk-out basement that houses the laundry, the cold storage larder and a large workroom that can be closed off.
This has been one of the longer spells of cold weather experienced since we moved into the farmhouse during the winter of 2015.
Today's high temperature was a mere 20 F with sunshine for most of the day.
I didn't challenge myself with anything strenuous.
There are the daily chores needed to keep a house reasonably clean; Jim and I often collaborate on meal prep if he isn't busy in the workshop.
A recipe posted on Face Book for 'Hermits' caught my eye.
My mother often made cookies of that name when I was a child.
I mixed the ingredients per the recipe which created a dough too dry and crumbly to spread in a baking pan as suggested.
A quick perusal of Hermit recipes online revealed that there is considerable variation in ingredients and method.
My mother's cookies were dropped by the spoonful on a baking sheet.
I made 1/3 cup of instant coffee using some of the granulated form that Jim keeps on hand for a quick hot drink. Stirred into the 'crumbles' this created a dough that could be deposited on a baking sheet using my usual dough scoop.
The resulting cookies--rich with molasses, spices and dried cranberries--are moist and chewy, lovely with a mug of tea.
This was also the day to replenish our bread.
We drove up the hill to the Beachy Amish store to purchase a 50 pound sack of the unbleached flour that I use in all my baking.
Mr. Beachy was keeping the store, the only one of the family in evidence. Usually one or more of the teenage children waits on customers.
Mr. Beachy remarked wryly that he was the only one of the family still on his feet as the rest of the household were down with a respiratory flu.
We came home with 50 pounds of flour, a few grapefruit, a bag of Winesap apples and another flat of Noosa Lemon Yogurt.
I mixed the bread a bit differently--adding a cup of oatmeal flakes, a cup of rye flour.
It is good bread!
Tomorrow we will attend the memorial service for a man who was a member of our church. Our church community is saddened. Joe had just passed his 42nd birthday--he was diagnosed with ALS [Lou Gehrigs's disease] over a year ago--lived as gracefully and courageously as possible.
The funeral of a young person or one in the prime of life is always more difficult.
I have to make a dessert for the meal that will be served to family and guests, and will likely stay to help tidy the kitchen.
For a few days I'm not planning to push myself, to set goals.
I'm about to find my place in the book I set aside, and will encourage Teasel-cat to sit with me in the rocking chair near the warmth of the fire.