Of a Weekend

1/27/2023: Seraphina had a friend over today.  While they played I ran around like a madwoman, trying gain some traction with housework and projects.

In the afternoon we took dinner over to a dear friend who has been unwell.  I’ve been fussing and worrying because I do love him so!  Galen made chili (he’s working on perfecting his recipe), Mairi baked banana bread, and I made roasted brussel sprouts.  He later wrote to me calling the sprouts “a revelation”, which made me laugh, because who else would say such a thing about brussel sprouts?!?

A weird and humorous outing this evening.  Elijah has a photo shoot tomorrow and he needs to do his own make up for the first time.  His schedule and disposition lead to him waiting until the very last moment to even buy said make up.  So, the two of us were out tonight, holding bottles and jars and tubes up to his face, and generally causing old ladies to raise their eyebrows.  It reminded me of when I was young.  Some friends talked me into going to my junior prom at the last minute and my mother and I went on a late night whirlwind shopping trip the night before- dress, make-up, jewelry.  I always loved that about her…her being who she was that night.


Date night at home can be an uninspired affair, but we made a lovely time of it this week.  We had a walk to begin with.  So many trees are down or drooping!  It’s shocking.  We paused now and then for Steve to clear branches out of the road as we went.  The road itself is like walking on rock candy, with broken up chunks of ice all about, some of it colored by the trees that it fell from.

The children were discussed and plans for sugaring off were made and I slipped my arm through his as if we were promenading for show down a public walk in the 1800′s.

A Fine Romance: Falling in Love with the English Countryside by Susan Branch just arrived from the library that morning, so we paged through the whole thing together while I ate some of the heart shaped cereal that I bought as a treat to make Seraphina smile.  This is what I want to do: travel to all of the same places and, also, separately and together; record my life this way, thoughtfully, in words, drawings, photos, recipes, quotes.  Both.  I want both of those things.  It includes a recipe for roasted shallots which is just the thing to make my birthday dinner more festive.  I’ve placed an order for them to be picked up tomorrow.

I tried to take a picture of my fancy bell sleeves.

Then Steve tried.

I was treated to a delightful massage, the oil laced with sandalwood, ylang ylang, vanilla, cinnamon, and jasmine.  The scent makes me feel like spring is near, that it’s even possible, which I sometimes question at this time of year.  It’s that sensation mingled with the luxurious feeling of being well cared for, which is a great comfort to me, and delectable to be able to carry it with me through the night.

I want to learn to paint flowers. Roses in particular. I’m always trying to convince my sons to paint me flowers, but they are kindred spirits of Bob Ross and only wish to paint mountains.

There is a great deal to be said for adding some cream and pesto to regular tomato sauce.


“This water bottle is perfect for drinking tea. You can take it with you, swing it around…” -Seraphina, swinging said bottle about in big dramatic circles.

I set myself a goal of over-hauling the entire living room by the end of January.  While massive changes have been wrought, I’m not going to finish all I set out to do this week.  There is a question of perfectionism and am I asking too much?

I’ve been sorting through books this weekend.  Two boxes are ready to donate.  I’m starting to let go of a lot of my early childhood volumes.  You are Your Child’s First Teacher, Seven Times the Sun, and the like.  They are all touted as being for children to the age of six or seven and my youngest is nearly nine.  It is a strange, strange feeling.  Very final.  There are some books that I simply can’t let go of, and don’t plan to.  I’m thinking of devoting a shelf specifically to books that I wish to share with my future grandchildren.

Meanwhile the room is going backwards as there are piles of books everywhere.  People keep walking in and asking what on earth happened in here, with shocked expressions on their faces.  It was really a mess for a while. 

After 45 minutes of diligent work categorizing and trying to pile things up in a thoughtful way I asked Steve if it was any better.  He looked and laughed.



There is a thing going around Instagram right now of people posting pictures of themselves at 23 for the year 2023.  Curiosity made me look back.  Here is me.  I also came across this sweet photo of Steve and Elijah from that same year.




On one hand, we’ve spent much of the winter looking like Narnia. It’s stunning, albeit blinding at times, but also treacherous. There are at least three trees lying across the power lines on our road as I type this. There are downed trees everywhere just now and our little dead-end, dirt road isn’t exactly I high priority. We had a tree crash down on top of our cars last month and a second large one fell across the path that the kids use for sledding. Two nights ago I was periodically startled awake by the sound of crunching crashing trees and branches that could no longer take the strain of their heavy burden of snow and ice. Thankfully, only small trees fell near the house. Iain’s elderberry was smashed by a tree from behind. Seraphina’s apricot tree is nearly flat on the ground. I don’t know if it broken or if it’s roots were ripped out of the earth or what. And there is really no way to know until everything thaws in the spring. If you look 30′ or so up above our chicken coop, you will find three large branches, dangling precariously. Just a few degrees means the difference between fluffy snow, safely on the ground, and heavy snow and ice pulling every thing down. A lot of the lower elevations had a rainy winter. For us it’s been heavy, heavy snow. The kind of snow that snow blowers can’t throw, that makes one uneasy with the looming threat of heart attacks, that packs down turning driveways and paths alarmingly slick and perilous.

Different days, different moods.