Friday, February 04, 2011

Day Four--and more snow!

When I got up this morning about 5 a.m. to feed the persistent cat (no, I did not stay up!) I wondered why my neighbors white stucco house seemed to almost glow. Then I realized there was a white glow to the whole outdoors--yep., 4.5 inches of fresh snow on top of the ice we already had. Above is the view from my front door, looking down the street that sort of dead-ends into my house. I didn't venture beyond the front door and never did get a newspaper. What that new snow meant, of course, is that the snow, pretty as it was, covered up the ice, so you couldn't tell what you were walking on. Christian's proposed grocery trip for me disappeared, as did my date with Jacob tonight, so it's been another long day at home.  A bright spot in the day was another bit of neighborhly concern--I looked out to see the young teenager, maybe fourteen, from across the street shoveling my walk. I called my thanks and asked if I could pay him; he declined. The next time I looked, his mom was out there with him, throwing rock salt on the sidewalk. It is lovely to live in this neighborhood where people care about each other. Thanks to Atticus Johnson and his mom, Margaret, and to Meredith Latimer for visiting me yesterday at some peril to herself and her three-year-old--that icy driveway was difficult for a very pregnant young woman to navigate.

Don't get me wrong--I have plenty of work to do and spent a lot of today working on marketing my e-books. Pretty good success in following some complicated (to me) directions. Even found an almost-free picture for "The Art of Candle Dipping." The wax vat looks like one the pioneer housewife would have used--and sort of like the one in our Log Cabin Village where I got the story. But that housewife hand dipped candles one at a time, without a fancy rack like this. Still I think it's a good picture, and I sent it to a designer with about ten words of copy and the challenge to make it a vertical cover at least 600 pixels tall.
I also bought a round-trip plane tricket to El Paso. I'll go with Carol Roark for two days at the Texas State Historical Association meetings--never thought I'd go back to El Paso, having been there once thirty-some years ago. I was asked, sort of last minute, to write a paper on juvenile historical novels, filling in for someone who withdrew. My first response was that I'd be glad to do the paper but there was no way I was going to El Paso. A friend agreed to read it for me. I began to realize a lot of my friends will be there, and Carol said she wanted to go and share a room, so I began to think about it. Flying is a big deal for me, not something I do gracefully, nor do I walk into strange situations with ease. But I'm determined to widen the circle of my experience--and to gear myself up for a possible trip to Scotland with Colin and Megan. So this mini-trip is a practice run. I've been known to make arrangements before and cancel them, but I'm determined no to do that this time.
Meantime I set the table for nine tonight, which meant dragging out the leaves from under my bed--my goodness, were they dusty! And I got one I could not fit in--it had pegs on the wrong side everywhere I put it. I began to feel that I was working a Chinese puzzle. But I finally put it back and got out another one. I have four leaves in the table and a tablecloth meant for it to have five leaves (which won't fit in my dining room anyway). But the cloth drags at either end, and I shall undoubtedly trip on it and yank all the dishes off the table.
The menu? I'm still going through my cupboards and freezer, seeing what I can put together without going to the grocery--which would probably be okay tomorrow afternoon but not in time to cook for dinner. There will be three children, and I have cheese, hot dogs, clementines, and ice cream for them.  Should be an interesting evening--just hope all those four young men don't go away hungry. More tomorrow night.


Sally Jackson said...

Before striking out to a grocery store tomorrow, after the supposed thaw, you might check with the store in question. A friend put up a picture taken in Tom Thumb showing virtually empty meat counters, no eggs at all, and scanty produce. I guess the trucks couldn't get through the snow and ice to make deliveries.

Judy Alter said...

Thanks, Sally. I thought about that and don't plan to go tomorrow. It won't thaw in time for me to cook a company dinner, so I have a new plan: a pot-luck pot of soup. I've asked everyone to bring whatever they want to add to the soup pot. I can cobble together appetizers, and I have your pull-apart bread in the freezer and an ice cream pie. Do NOT ask why I made an ice cream pie in February--haven't figured it out myself. Must go to Central Market Sunday--almost out of hummus. A catastrophe.

Anonymous said...

You have a good eye(for photography). Maybe next time your books should include illustrations (also photographed by the author).

Judy Alter said...

Thanks, but I never thought of myself as a photographer. Half my photos come out blurry--unsteady hands. But this picture is good, and maybe I could do some for a food booko I'm working on.