Saturday, January 05, 2013

and now, a look at the holidays

The children are sad that the Christmas tree is coming down tomorrow. Grandmarie left this morning, and school starts again on Monday. We have loved being at home in this house for the holiday season, but we have had our share of shouting and sibling rivalry around here.  In their own naive way my children are very spoiled. They are also the only grandchildren on both sides of the family, and, heck, I like to spoil them too. Maybe we all need to rethink Christmas in the age of tiny screens. We have had many very good moments though, and I'm already looking forward to next year. As always I need to start earlier with my desire to give handmade gifts. I still have a few things to finish, but hopefully it will be worth the wait for the recipients. The children want more decorations next year, so perhaps we'll have a day for bringing in more greenery, more candles, and if the littles have anything to do with it---more lights. One thing we certainly will have next year is more warmth. The woodstove comes this Wednesday. We had twenty four hours without electricity, and the kitchen went down to 49 degrees. I wouldn't let the kids go out to play in the snow because I no way to really warm them up when they came in. Our twenty five advent candles 'warmed" the house during that dark day.

We had many delicious meals and treats. My mother and I made the Pain Au Bacon from Ken Forkish's new book Flour Water Salt Yeast with perfect results. It takes a week to grow the levain. It was definitely the holiday of bacon, and it came from farms across Virginia. Granny and Grandmarie both brought delicious bacon, and we had our own share from our friends at Leaping Waters Farm. Last night I braved the high winds and fired up the grill to cook some of their Ancient White Park steaks for my mother's birthday. It was  delicious beside Julia Child's braised leeks and the Pain Au Bacon.  On Christmas we had oyster stew and fried oysters from Rappahannock via the Fredricksburg Farmer's Market. I think we need to have iced water and kale salad for the rest of the month.

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