Dec. 26th, 2009

mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Christmas dinner was postponed a day because of the snow. As I look out the window now, it's snowing heavily again. Our driveway is drifted shut, and my in-laws - driving a 4-wheel drive Tacoma - are bringing a snowblower. Yea for in-laws with snowblowers!

Our Christmas dinner dishes aren't especially gourmet, we just use different ingredients than most folks. We like turkey, but no Butterball or Tyson for us; ours is a free-ranger from a ranch in California. Cranberry sauce: oh yes, fresh made this morning from a bag of cranberries. Stuffing: bread cubes we cut and dried this morning, pecans, cranberries, herbs from our own garden. We'll roast our green beans, with sunflower nuts and e.v.o.o. Steamed carrots, with brown sugar and dill. All yummy stuff.

For lunch I ate the heart. Sliced thin and fried in e.v.o.o. with salt and pepper. It wasn't bad. I still don't care for liver or gizzard.

I'm in the breathing space between prepping for roasting and letting the bird roast. The giblets (minus one heart) are simmering, for use in the gravy later. The cranberry sauce is done, chilling in the refrigerator. We'll make the stuffing more or less in advance (we don't stuff the bird), but it will go into the chiller until the turkey's out. Butter is melting; aromatics - sage, thyme, fresh celery, fresh onion - will be added in a few minutes.

In my next house, I plan to have two ovens, and a six burner gas range. This b.s. of having to prepare and cook food in shifts is...well...b.s.
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Christmas dinner was postponed a day because of the snow. As I look out the window now, it's snowing heavily again. Our driveway is drifted shut, and my in-laws - driving a 4-wheel drive Tacoma - are bringing a snowblower. Yea for in-laws with snowblowers!

Our Christmas dinner dishes aren't especially gourmet, we just use different ingredients than most folks. We like turkey, but no Butterball or Tyson for us; ours is a free-ranger from a ranch in California. Cranberry sauce: oh yes, fresh made this morning from a bag of cranberries. Stuffing: bread cubes we cut and dried this morning, pecans, cranberries, herbs from our own garden. We'll roast our green beans, with sunflower nuts and e.v.o.o. Steamed carrots, with brown sugar and dill. All yummy stuff.

For lunch I ate the heart. Sliced thin and fried in e.v.o.o. with salt and pepper. It wasn't bad. I still don't care for liver or gizzard.

I'm in the breathing space between prepping for roasting and letting the bird roast. The giblets (minus one heart) are simmering, for use in the gravy later. The cranberry sauce is done, chilling in the refrigerator. We'll make the stuffing more or less in advance (we don't stuff the bird), but it will go into the chiller until the turkey's out. Butter is melting; aromatics - sage, thyme, fresh celery, fresh onion - will be added in a few minutes.

In my next house, I plan to have two ovens, and a six burner gas range. This b.s. of having to prepare and cook food in shifts is...well...b.s.
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Ninety feet of driveway is a lot of driveway, even with a snowblower. Under the inch of fine, easily blown powder was three inches of heavy, wet, compacted frozen concrete. I had to nibble away at the job, and progress was slow. My father-in-law's snowblower was wheezing almost as bad as me.

The drift around my car was just under three feet, a depth that, for Missouri, is quite rare. Now, you might say, oh sure, Bill, but they have drifts of six feet or more in New York.  Yes, but given our much closer proximity to, say, the Gulf of Mexico, three feet is quite the event. The kids have played outdoors a lot yesterday and today. There haven't been many great snowfalls in the years they've been old enough to enjoy them and they've been lobbing chunks of snow, building "forts" inside the drifts, making snow-angels, etc.

This morning, as the kids were going out for their first Arctic adventure of the day, Schipper decided to make a break for it and investigate a car that was stalled in front of our house. Michelle, in wild pursuit of the soon-to-be-very-sorry dog, fell down the front porch steps. Her right shoulder and hip/butt are very sore, and stiffening quick. I know she has plans to take some very heavy painkillers as soon as the kids are in bed, and I don't blame her.

Schipper, terrified by the commotion she caused, hunkered down and waited for Death. I'm pretty sure there was some submissive urination involved, too.

After Christmas dinner - which was wonderful and will feed us for a few more days - I went out, unloaded the snowblower from father-in-law's truck, and went to work.

Jami joined me outside as I was clearing the driveway. Like his father, he gives little thought to concerns of personal safety, and so placed himself in what he took to be the direct path of the snow chute. I adjusted it on each pass so that the machine threw the snow just in front of him and downwind, and with each pass he moved to try to be in the path. I finally decided to give him his wish, indirectly. I adjusted the chute to blow upwind of his position. My warmth-loving son found himself enveloped in a thick cold cloud of light blowing snow. For just a second I couldn't see him for all the frozen white...and then it settled. He stood, unmoving, waiting to see if it was safe.

Without a word, he turned his back on me and went inside. Yes, I laughed.

It was hard work, but done now. My neck and back hurt.  As for Jami, he's had his bath and is warm and snug in bed. Katie, too. Michelle and I are on our way to the family room to watch Star Trek (my stocking stuffer from "Santa") where we will fight a losing battle with sleep and gradually stiffen into immobility.


mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Ninety feet of driveway is a lot of driveway, even with a snowblower. Under the inch of fine, easily blown powder was three inches of heavy, wet, compacted frozen concrete. I had to nibble away at the job, and progress was slow. My father-in-law's snowblower was wheezing almost as bad as me.

The drift around my car was just under three feet, a depth that, for Missouri, is quite rare. Now, you might say, oh sure, Bill, but they have drifts of six feet or more in New York.  Yes, but given our much closer proximity to, say, the Gulf of Mexico, three feet is quite the event. The kids have played outdoors a lot yesterday and today. There haven't been many great snowfalls in the years they've been old enough to enjoy them and they've been lobbing chunks of snow, building "forts" inside the drifts, making snow-angels, etc.

This morning, as the kids were going out for their first Arctic adventure of the day, Schipper decided to make a break for it and investigate a car that was stalled in front of our house. Michelle, in wild pursuit of the soon-to-be-very-sorry dog, fell down the front porch steps. Her right shoulder and hip/butt are very sore, and stiffening quick. I know she has plans to take some very heavy painkillers as soon as the kids are in bed, and I don't blame her.

Schipper, terrified by the commotion she caused, hunkered down and waited for Death. I'm pretty sure there was some submissive urination involved, too.

After Christmas dinner - which was wonderful and will feed us for a few more days - I went out, unloaded the snowblower from father-in-law's truck, and went to work.

Jami joined me outside as I was clearing the driveway. Like his father, he gives little thought to concerns of personal safety, and so placed himself in what he took to be the direct path of the snow chute. I adjusted it on each pass so that the machine threw the snow just in front of him and downwind, and with each pass he moved to try to be in the path. I finally decided to give him his wish, indirectly. I adjusted the chute to blow upwind of his position. My warmth-loving son found himself enveloped in a thick cold cloud of light blowing snow. For just a second I couldn't see him for all the frozen white...and then it settled. He stood, unmoving, waiting to see if it was safe.

Without a word, he turned his back on me and went inside. Yes, I laughed.

It was hard work, but done now. My neck and back hurt.  As for Jami, he's had his bath and is warm and snug in bed. Katie, too. Michelle and I are on our way to the family room to watch Star Trek (my stocking stuffer from "Santa") where we will fight a losing battle with sleep and gradually stiffen into immobility.


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