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» Sunday, December 18, 2016Rainy Without and Warm Within
What woke me up this morning was warmth. During the night it had gone up to 67°F and by eight-thirty those nice cozy blankets from last night were scratchy and hot. Sigh. So I went into the bathroom, where I could just see the sun rising over the pretty-much-naked trees in the back yard, and was scrolling through my phone for a few minutes when I looked out again and it was as dark as twilight and the trees were lashing back and forth. The front was coming through with a vengeance for about five minutes, then it got light again. Unfortunately it also started raining so I couldn't re-fill the bird feeders and Tucker went outside, did his thing quickly on the lawn, and then dashed back inside.
I had an eggnog and some oatmeal for breakfast, with James having eggs, and then we headed out for what turned out to be a long day. First we stopped at the new Publix so James could check it out and we could pick out some peppermint tea. They were still giving out samples and we had some kind of chicken pilaf with a raspberry vinegar salad, and also some salami and crackers and cream cheese with brown sugar sauce poured on top of it. We picked up some lamb, some ground turkey, something for Christmas Eve dessert, more wraps so James can make more breakfast burritos to get him past the new year, and this and that, including some soup for dinner.
I still had a 25 percent off Barnes & Noble coupon and a ten dollar gift card, and James had a 30 percent off coupon, and both had to be used in the store. So we decided to go into Buckhead, which meant a nice ride down the snazzy lengths of West Paces Ferry Road. This has always been a wealthy neighborhood, but they've been knocking down the former posh houses to build even posher homes, "McMansions" as it were. One even looks like an Italian palazzio. All of them have mailboxes swathed with fresh Christmas greens which must come from Very Expensive Florists and most are traditionally decorated with wreaths, red bows, white candles, and green garlands. The forecast was for rain all day and it was indeed misty and grey, and, as the hours went by, getting colder: it was 67 when I got up and at eleven it was already down in the 50s.
We had a peppermint cocoa when we got there, sharing a piece of what was labeled as gingerbread loaf, but what was very lightly gingerbread and had citron in it. Then we hit the magazine racks. I found the magazine I was looking for, the winter edition of "This England," also a big thick magazine from "Country Life" called "Forever England," the new issue of "Breathe," and the January "Country Sampler." I found the book I wanted to get, but James looked around and was dissatisfied with the books he saw. He thought about getting a game, but Buckhead didn't have a good selection of games. Because it was raining, he hadn't taken his power chair, and was looking exhausted from the pain of walking, but we paid for our stuff and then drove home via the Akers Mill store, which usually does have a good selection of games. This time he couldn't find anything that pleased him, but he saw a new book there about the Pacific theater in World War II and bought that. I picked up the book I wanted at a good savings, a beautiful art book about Beatrix Potter. Everyone remembers her for Peter Rabbit and her children's books, and perhaps for preserving a large part of the Lake District in England and keeping it from developers, but not many people know she drew botanical models that were so good they were used in textbooks. And half the time she wasn't credited because textbook publishers didn't want to give a woman credit!
By now the mist and the damp were deep into our bones and it was after three and we were tired and achy. We decided to just come home and eat. We had the soup we picked up at Publix this morning (I picked more noodles and chicken and veg than soup, and then took most of the soup so James could substitute no-salt broth in his bowl; a good thing I did, too, as it was very salty) and James made grilled cheese sandwiches. I put all the four Timmy and Lassie Christmas episodes on while we ate, and we had two of our gingerbread boys from Books-a-Million for dessert.
Later on we watched the news, and then the saga of Ralphie Parker and his quest for a Red Ryder BB gun in A Christmas Story, and finally the new Christmas episode of Alaska: the Last Frontier. This was a great episode. They did a "white elephant" Christmas—calling it "white rabbit" instead—and there were some killer gifts. Shane made a stone axe which Eivan ended up with, Eve (and little Finlay) made blackcurrant wine, Charlotte made an old model of the Kilcher original homestead, Eivan made a samurai sword and scabbard, Atz did a basket sculpture with an old pelvis bone...just real cool stuff, and it was funny, too.
And after all that, the weekend is over, and...damn, I have to go back to the grocery store! My baking powder is outdated!