Monday, October 13, 2008

No Apples For Me

Day Nine here.

I missed the window of opportunity so far as the apple picking went. We woke up to about 4 inches of snow early Saturday morning, and it did not abate throughout the day. When all was said and done, we had 17 inches of snow within 24 hours. Talk about crazy; I think in the one day we had as much snow here in the valley as we had all season last winter. This morning, it was 9 degrees when I got here to work-but it is supposed to be near 70 again by Friday. I hope that the snow and freeze didn't ruin the available apples, but I bet it did. I mean, the carrots that always freeze in my fridge because I can't get the temperature regulated right never taste or look good after they have thawed, so it stands to reason that the apples won't either. So that is a bummer, really.

It was really neat, though, to be all cozy at home and watch the snow fall. The two big boys spent the majority of the day outside, and even Owen got to go out for awhile-until the snow got so deep that he couldn't walk in it without doing a face-plant. I realized that we don't have a single item of winter clothing save a pair of snow pants for Sam from last year; poor kid was outside with three sweatshirts, socks on his hands, the snow pants, and his sister's boots on (Yesterday we came down to the office and used the Target gift card that someone who shall remain nameless sent me to order Owen and Sam both coats, boots, and hats/gloves-so THANK YOU, over and over again. They aren't undies or bras for me, but are instead even better). Hannah and Eli both ended up being gone on Saturday night, so Owen and Sam and I got to hang out. I love love love the feeling of frosty little faces pressed up against mine when they come in from playing in the snow, running a bubble bath and making hot chocolate while they are in there, I even love putting the towels in the dryer so when they get out they can wrap up in a warm towel, sit in front of the heater and drink hot chocolate (and FYI, the trick when you are making it with the Hershey's Unsweetened Powder is to actually add the salt the recipe calls for, in case anyone wonders. And vanilla. And a touch of cinnamon). I don't do it all of the time, because I certainly don't want them to start EXPECTING that kind of treatment, but on days like Saturday, it was necessary on a very fundamental level. So before bed we ate buttered toast and hot chocolate and the two boys went to bed smelling fresh and clean and toasty. I got the unexpected luxury, too, of having peace and quiet for THREE hours, which was amazing. I took my own bubble bath, I painted my toenails and slathered honeysuckle lotion all over, and it was absolutely wonderful. It was so nice to curl up in bed with the dogs in between clean sheets and read until 11:00-pure luxury.

I actually had to venture out of the house yesterday, which I had been trying to avoid doing. However, for some odd reason the kids were complaining about having to use baby wipes for toilet paper (yeah, yeah, I know....), we needed a few groceries, Hannah and I went to the store. In our pajamas. But what happened then was quite amazing. I oh-so-casually asked Hannah if the girl whose house shy had stayed at the night before had "hit on" her. See, she came over on Saturday and while she did not act at all inappropriately toward Hannah or cause any trouble (in fact, she seems nice enough all the way around), Eli told me that she goes around telling people that she is bi, and she sometimes has a girlfriend and sometimes has a boyfriend....anyway, same-sex relationships or how to deal with advances from someone of the same gender is not really something we have discussed, but Hannah and I were able to have a really great discussion about it yesterday. I also found out some things about this girl and her family that I didn't know, and while I won't go into detail, this girl B. is welcome to come to our house anytime but Hannah will definitely not be staying the night there again. How lucky I am, that Hanna was able to TALK to me, and be honest about what happened, and also express concerns about what she should do as a friend to this girl. She is so brave and strong, I can't begin to express that enough.

Last night Jacquie and I went into the Juvenile Jail to take in an AA meeting; it was-well. I don't have the words for that, either, not really. Not today, anyway. I will just say that there is a lot to process, my heart hurts for these kids, and I will definitely be going back. Once I get my head and heart around things, I might wrote about it, but I might not. It was good, though, and I am grateful a thousand times over for having been given the opportunity to go.


April said...

You sound at great peace today. I'm glad to hear it. I love you.

Kori said...

Oh the snow, the bath and the hot chocolate sounds absolutely wonderful. So glad you got some "you" time as well.

And you are doing a great job being a Mother for Hannah to be able to tell you things that concern her. Way to go.

Melissa said...

Bummer about the apples, but I'm thinking the quiet was even better!

We have wild weather swings like that here as well, but ours don't usually happen until January. And without the snow. :)

Jeanne Elle said...

Oh I LOVE the snow!!! How lucky for you :-) It's not cold enough here yet (but getting close). You've inspired me with the homemade hot chocolate - I keep promising my kids I'll make them some, so maybe I'll do that today :-)

Mama Smurf said...

There is something fundamentally wrong with the fact that you are talking about 17 inches of snow ....and boots....and snow pants....and gloves and OCTOBER!!!



FreedomFirst said...

Wow, snow already! We probably won't see that for another month at least, with our crazy tropical SE Pennsylvania weather. And we haven't had more than 8 inches since I was too young to recall.

I love making hot chocolate from scratch. I do that every other week now, since my sister gets me 2 gallons of milk a week from the dairy. Whatever is left over when the new milk arrives gets made into hot cocoa (or chocolate milk). I'm sorry you missed out on the apples though.

Kudos on your up-front approach with Hannah. Thinking about how a discussion like that would have gone with my Mom makes my head hurt. She once refused to promise not to make any offensive remarks if I brought a bi-racial friend over, a really nice girl I had just met at work but subsequently lost touch with. I didn't bring her over.

It's a shame that a girl Hannah's age is already so experienced that she can say she "sometimes" has one or the other. I just find that depressing. It shows a lack of stability in her life. I wish her the best.

Martin said...

I loved this, not sure why, I just did.

I'm a big football (saaaaawker) fan.
There often arise situations where managers of the biggest teams get the plaudits, for winning everything, but basically they had millions to spend on players and getting that winning team isn't quite the achievement it's cracked up to be.

The at the other end of the scale you have managers who have no budget for players, and have to make the team survive through coaching and determination and utilising what they have to their maximum.

I often wonder just how great these guys could be if they were given the easier route their wealthy counterparts have.

Dunno where this is all going, but you are like one of those managers, in my twisted head at least.

I'll shut up now.

Momo Fali said...

Ack! You're scaring me into not letting my daughter go to her friend's houses for sleepovers!

Anonymous said...

While I don't want to rush through Fall (because I haven't had a chance to go apple picking yet!), I do love snow days. I felt all warm and snuggly just reading about your Saturday.

justme said...

Although I am not ready for the extended nature of winter round here, I too just LOVE those types of days curled up in the house while the snow falls outside coating everything in a beautiful white layer (in your case, a very THICK white layer!). I love your description of the kids' faces on yours, and am very much looking forward to when my child(ren) are older and I can create such rituals for snowy Saturdays :)

Bummer about the apples! I HAVE to make time to get some seconds this week as I am DYING for some fresh, hot apple crisp.

Tara R. said...

SNOW! Wow! We are still in 80-degree range and I thought it was a bit cold the other morning when it dipped into the 50s. I'm such a baby!

I think it's great that you and Hannah have such a good relationship that you can talk about potentially uncomfortable issues. That speaks volumes about what a great job you're doing as a mom.

Cheffie-Mom said...

How wonderful. Sounds so relaxing. I wish we got snow like that in East Texas. (:

Ronda's Rants said...

Man oh man Do I want some Hot chocolate! I do not however want your cold weather!!! I love hot weather and I thank God for Florida!!! I can't imagine that kind of cold!!!
I am sorry about the apples though!
I am researching canning...let's see if I can do it!
I am glad you went to the meeting...I look forward to hearing how it went!

Julie@My5monkeys said...

Bummer about the apples. Sounds like its getting cold up there.

Anonymous said...

I was thinking about you and your apples this weekend! I was all worried that I wouldn't get the good apples before the first freeze, (I had never heard about the whole "get the apples before the first freeze" thing) but considering it's like 80 degrees here, I think I'm in the clear.

But I echo April--you sound as if you are at peace, and that's just awesome to hear. I LURVE it!

Laski said...

Kori . . . that sounds like the PERFECT day. I can just see little Owen toddling along and PLOP. Why? J would do the same thing . . .

Hot chocolate, warm towels, honeysuckle--what a wonderful treat for the senses!

And, as for you're talk with Hannah . . . BRAVO to you for keeping those lines of communication open. My mom and I used to share a bond like that. And although there are glimpses of the bond we shared from time to time, something happened and I can honestly say that I miss it terribly.

Jennifer said...

Oh man--I wish I could give you some of my apples! I have like 10 million too many!

I can't believe you have snow and it's been in the 80s here! I'm not quite ready for snow--but this is waaaaay too hot.

You're so right about the unsweetened cocoa! That's the best way to make it.