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November 11, 2000
a year ago
two years ago
three years ago

Snow Adventures

Fezzik got up once after I did, and I let him out. I went back to sleep and woke up when I heard him coming up the stairs in front of the house. John was very cool and got up in order to help him up the stairs, but Fezzik made it just fine and just came right into the house when John opened the door. So he had no problem getting in or out or around in the snow. In fact, John brushed Fezzik off and got off a very large amount of snow.

I am glad we did the chemo treatment. Fezzik is just so much better today. He's happy, sleeping contentedly wherever he wants to, eating things with gusto and happily watching John and I do things today. He's really enjoying the snow as well. I think that the overnight visit with the vet tired him out as he may well not sleep well away from home, as he slept a lot today, but seemed to enjoy the time that he was awake.

I woke up and the world was white and more snow was falling. Small, gentle flakes that were coming down everywhere. There was a good inch on everything, and more was coming and it was fluffy, white, and powder dry. Fezzik went out around 6 and John let him in and he looked like the Abominable Snow Dog, all white on top. The snow on his back was fluffy and light, his fur coat is providing pretty incredible insulation for him. He then curled up contentedly on his inside bed and watched and sniffed while I made scones. John worked on stuff and made coffee. While the scones baked, I ate some yogert and my calcium, as I needed them pretty badly.

The scones came out as lovely as they did last week. It was a really satisfying breakfast. With the bad traffic yesterday and all the snow it seemed a little crazy, but I really wanted to find a gourmet cheese shop in Longmont and then go get groceries normally. John and I actually went through the work of going through all our coupons and through the pantries and stuff to find out what it was we didn't have. We ended up with a list, a stack of coupons, and a pile of our cloth bags. Fezzik went outside with the lure of some dog biscuits. I put his water out there with him.

I tried going out in my new Birkies, but the open back got a ton of snow against my heels. I went back into the house and put on my Baffins, my big snow boots. That made everything a lot more snug, but I added my Mad Bomber's hat as well. The hat really made it so that I could face any cold we ran into.

We went rather carefully through the snow, tried to avoid traffic, and found ourselves, more often than not with a snow plow and sander before us, so all the roads got to be in pretty good shape. Finding the Cheese Import shop took a little while, but when we arrived, it was very much worth it. There was an entire store room that was refrigerated and filled with cheeses from all over the world. Rows upon rows of cheese of all kinds, British, Italian, French, American, and even middle Eastern. Pretty much every variety I'd ever known was represented multiply. There were more kinds of blue cheese than I could count, what with there being Rouquefort, Stilton, Bleu, and Gorgonzola and multiples of each of those. Some creamier and others harder and some shaper and others sweeter. It was very interesting to see them all there. I really wanted to try a true British Stilton and see how it differed from the other things I'd eaten. I had plans for some of the baby spinach at home.

We also got some British Cheddar, Greek Mizithra, buffalo Mozarella, gourmet olives, a very nice looking sourdough bagette, and I was lured in by a chocolate bar with crumbs of Amaretti Di Saranno in it. There was a grater of exactly the size I wanted, as well as an espresso bar that would serve hot chocolate as well as the mocha that John wanted to combat the cold. Combat it it did. I really, really loved the hot chocolate and asked what the chocolate was in it, and the bar lady didn't know. The ladies out front said that it was Giradelli and I was happy.

Out again, out again... and we managed to find out a way to the Safeway in Longmont. There we executed our plan and managed to save over twenty dollars, what with a number of Safeway's specials lined up with our coupons as well. We had a lot of groceries, too, and when we got home with it all, pretty much filled the pantry, the freezer downstairs and a good chunk of our refrigerator. Cleaned out all the old food as well, which was really nice. I think it's winter hibernation instincts coming out, stocking up on stuff and getting ready to just be home a lot. It was really fun to have gone through all the snow and driven in it and gotten to do what we wanted to do anyway. A snow adventure that ended up with us having a lot of good things to hole up with.

Fezzik was asleep outside, on his bed, when we got home and I went out to get his water bowl, which had a film of ice on the top. He knew we were home but made no move to come back in and wouldn't budge when I asked if he wanted to come in. So I left him out there as we put things away. He was obviously enjoying the cold and the snow.

John had more of the green chile cassarole for lunch while I did my nefarious things with spinach. I made a batch of spinach salad dressing and doused the big bowl of baby spinach leaves and then crumbled a lot of the Stilton on it. I gave some of it to John to eat with his lunch, and I ate an entire bowl of the stuff with a nice, ripe pear. When the spinach ran out I just spread Stilton on a bit of the bagette and since I spread it thick I ate it happily with the last of my pear. The sweetness and texture of the pear played beautifully with the rich pungency of the Stilton.

Sometimes I think my entire life is just a series of cravings, really, these aren't really pregnancy cravings they're just my own tastes, I think. Things I want to eat and when I eat them they're so utterly satisfying it still amazes me. While I was eating, Fezzik banged to be let in and he just sat and watched me eat. I gave him a leaf of spinach with dressing and he ate it eagerly. He also ate the pear core, every bit of it except the stem and enjoyed that a lot. When I was completely done with my lunch he got up and banged to be let out onto the back porch, where he lay down in the snow and ate all the snow within his reach in great, big mouthfuls.

After lunch, I half dozed in the rocking chair while Fezzik slept. I eventually looked through the Dean and Delucia catalog and drooled over various things I really didn't need to get. I did the same with the Chef's Catalog that came in the mail. Lots of really beautiful stuff that I don't need. My cooking equipment is prety much all I need. While I drowsed and meandered about John worked. He said he had to do just one last thing and then his brain could let him rest. I found a couple of fountain pens that I'd used all the ink out of, and needed cleaning, so I cleaned them out. I then found my Namiki fountain pen and wanted to use a pen again, so I filled it with Levenger's purple and happily wrote for a bit just for fun. Scenes that were in my head, they've started coming to me again, and it was good to get a few of them out where I could see them again. With all the first person writing I do here, third person writing feels awkward and odd, but I know that first person won't work for publishable fiction.

Eventually I came to the realization that I wanted to make chicken caccatori out of the on-sale chicken we'd bought at Safeway. Cook's Illustrated had a really good recipe that I wanted to try because of all the testing they'd done on it. So I did. Browned the chicken, poured off all the fat, which was almost a half an inch of liquid in the bottom of the pot. I then sauteed onions and mushrooms and garlic in the same Dutch oven. Everything left some wonderful browned stuff in the pan, so when I poured a cup and a half of wine in and scraped like crazy, all of it came off into the sauce. Tomatoes, chicken broth, herbs, and parmesian rind went in with the de-skinned chicken and the whole thing simmered for a good hour and filled the house with wonderful smells.

I made Fezzik his dinner and he's most of the way through the beef and rice I did last week, so I thawed another pound of ground beef and browned it and mixed it with that little carton of useless rice I'd gotten with my pot stickers and lo mein. It was an exact match in volume, which was pretty cool.

John sliced the fresh buffalo moz, cut a branch off my basil bush, and sliced a ripe tomato and we had those three with some olive oil and the bagette. The bread was really really good with the sauce from the chicken and John kept saying, "Have I told you this is really good?" It made me giggle. It really was very good. Rich in flavor, low on fat, and I wanted to soak every drop up afterwards. Fezzik got some of the sauce on his dinner and he inhaled it happily and when all the food was cleared away, he went out into his favorite snow bank and ate snow until his entire chest was white with the stuff and only then did he come back in.

He was walking perfect well even across the wood floor. That was good to see, so I just hugged him and petted him a lot and he seemed very happy. He was doing so well, that he went out pretty much when we went to sleep and eventhough the temperatures dropped into the teens, he didn't ever ask to come in. I heard him coming up the stairs at one time and barking at something at another, and John peeked out and Fezzik seemed entirely content to just sleep on his bed and run around the yard barking at something. I was mildly nervous 'cause of the really cold weather, but Fezzik seemed to do just fine.

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