|View of our lower forest|
The snowstorm wasn't as extreme as foretold last week. Just enough to lay a nice blanket of white over the earth, and give us reason to collect around our fireplace. It was very cold. We are keeping the central heating down at 60 -- the Celtic castle effect in the perimeters of the house. I adopted my husband's example and started wearing a complete set of thermal underwear under my ordinary clothes.
The grown boys in Oregon are more or less trapped in their apartment. Brendan calls the city a frozen wasteland.
Aidan has been wanting to make sugar shape cookies so today was the day. We roasted turkey for dinner.
Later on I drove down to the foothills to attend mass for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. I hesitated about going since the snow had stuck down to 2000 feet, but was glad I did. I said the rosary on the 20 minute drive each way, and the Mass was beautiful though sparsely attended.
We made more cookies, since it was a feast day. I didn't take a picture of the cookies, because they were kind of messy, but now I wish I had.
A quiet day at home. The older boys and I had a long conversation in front of the crackling fire, mostly about movies and politics. We are doing light academics. I am experimenting with Paddy choosing his own schedule from a list of possibilities. Here is last week's version. Right now he has free reign as long as he chooses ENOUGH things. In future weeks he will probably have to choose some of the areas he neglects for the more favorite areas.
Aidan continues to read through the Bible Stories. We read about Jesus calming the storm. There are times during the story, as when Jesus told Zaccheus "Come down! I am coming to your house," that Aidan turns to me with the sweetest, brimming-with-joy smile you can imagine. I don't know what he is thinking precisely, but it is so cute, like he just got something he had wanted for a long time.
Kevin and I finished watching Jericho on Netflix. He found it on a list of science fiction series that were cancelled too soon. It ran for a year and a half in 2006-2007 -- 29 episodes, and was unusual in that when CBS pulled it after the first season because of low ratings, the fan base campaigned so aggressively to bring it back that a second season of 7 episodes was made. Now there is a comic-book version of Season 3.
Kevin didn't really like the series, though he watched all the episodes. As for me, I rarely watch series or movies unless someone asks me to or I get pulled in. The pilot pulled me in and though the show's quality was uneven, the premise of a post-nuclear-bomb small town in Kansas was enough of an Advent theme to resonate with me. War, stress, sacrifice, loss and redemption are perfect for this time of year, even if in occasionally melodramatic tone. At least they work for me. Kevin is watching Terra Nova now, and I am back to reading on my Kindle.
Brendan finally got to hand in his last essay and do his last final exam online. He was majorly frustrated because he was supposed to be home Wednesday but the campus has been closed due to the terrible road conditions up there in Oregon. So he has been stuck in icy limbo. We do icy limbo here too but it is different in a National Forest than it is in a mid-sized city unaccustomed to that type of weather.
Kevin and I were supposed to go to a book study with some Catholic friends from church, but it was cancelled because of Christmas activities, so instead, we went to dinner together at a Mexican restaurant in the foothills. We don't get out together alone often so that was fun.
Aidan had to get Botox early this morning, so we had to drive down to town at 7 am. Here is a picture of him with all the things he brought to cheer him up -- including a smiling picture of his grandma and grandpa, a smiling printout of Mater from Cars, and his Toy Story video case with a smiling Buzz Lightyear and Woody. I think all the smiling faces reassure him that life will go on after the painful bits. His resilience and optimism are inspiring to me.
Then he had to get his monthly blood draws, but that doesn't really bother him compared to the Botox.
Kevin stocked up on groceries at CostCo and WinCo in the meantime, and then we got our CSA vegetables, picked up take and bake pizza to eat Saturday, and got Aidan's meds from the pharmacy. With all this we still got back by 1 pm and the boys unloaded and put away the groceries. We have a stuffed outside freezer now!
Today is projected to be busy but in a good way. Brendan arrives on Amtrak, which means another visit to town to pick him up.
Paddy has his piano recital down in the foothills. Then we have Mass in our local station chapel. Sean is supposed to meet with friends to go spelunking somewhere today so we have lots of things to do with our sole vehicle.