Sunday, January 15, 2012

All the Good Food of Winter (Week 33 of Fireflies at Dusk: A 52-Week Project)

Little snowflakes land softly on the leaves of our front-yard bush.
I caught these pictures in the early morning before the family got up.

A tree branch in our yard, and behind it the space where a car  had been parked
most of the night. It must have left in the very early morning.

Backyard blackberry bushes sleep for the winter,
 but their leaves are still busy catching snow.

Today, it snowed on and off all day.  The best days of winter through my life have often been snow days.  Depending on what city or state I was living in, each place had its own definition of what was of enough snow to close things down.  When I lived in Colorado, I was expected to be at work even if cars were sliding all over the road.  Now that I live in Portland, Oregon, even a light dusting can cause places to close or at least cause a lot of people to cancel things and stay indoors.  There's something distinctly beautiful about a light snowfall - you can still  see the the beauty of nature without it being completely covered up and everything becomes highlighted by white.  Snow and snow days seem like a good metaphor for grace.  Life is going along with all the usual demands and all the sudden, everything is covered, everything closes down, and you are off the hook.  For a day you are allowed to not be on time, you are allowed to not even be there, you are allowed to just be.

It seemed like a good day to stay in, stay warm, and eat good food.  I had put a roast in the crockpot last  night before bed so it simmered all night, filled the house with good smells of bay leaves and the wine it was marinating in.  We ate it for lunch with vegetables I roasted in the oven.   A cold winter night demands hearty, spicy food  to warm you and fill you up so I sauteed chipotle chicken sausage.  To go with it, I made a stock pot on the stove of homemade vegetable soup.  Spices went in, steam rose up from the shiny pot, and into our bowls it went.  Gingerbread and eggnog are two of the best tastes of winter, so we chased down almond butter fudge with afternoon gingerbread spice lattes and finished off the day with homemade eggnog ice cream.  A beautiful day of snow.  A good day for eating.

(c) 2012 photography and writing by Chloe - all rights reserved