Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Past is Prologue

Hank maintaining a state of readiness.
Tonight at 8pm, Betty loaded the last dishes into the dishwasher as I swept the kitchen. She said, "Well, that's done." I said, "And it only took you all day!" She confirmed that she'd been working in the kitchen since 8am and had only sat down to eat. I slept until ten and had, I will confess, sat periodically throughout the day. But the food was delicious and nicely presented and everyone was happy, and I think, grateful.

Here is the sweet potato and cauliflower au gratin recipe. Although where they say one cup of water and one cup of milk in the sauce, I do two cups of milk. That link goes to the now defunct Whole Living magazine, and they used to try to make everything healthy, so some reverse engineering is required. It was good and it got eaten.

I ate one plateful and had some prosecco and then after dessert, it was like I was struck by lightning. I didn't even think I ate that much, but I had to get horizontal. I went and fell across Betty's bed for an unspecified period of time. Then, because I had read this article yesterday about how a bout of exercise mitigates the effects of overeating and sitting around, Matt and the kids and I went for a brisk walk in the dusk.

As we walked to a nearby playground, I told the kids how, when we were first married, we used to walk along that same street and daydream about having one of the little cottages. We were living in a succession of newlywed apartments in those days, and for us to have a tidy little house together was all I wished for. It's so strange to be taking the same walk with our two huge, very real children. And to realize that those cute bungalows would not fit us these days. Matt remarked how small the houses seem, that he'd never noticed before, and we agreed that we have different eyes now. But how gradual the change! Life, man, the way it just takes you along and over and through things and it just keeps going around and around, and you just never know.

At the park, Matt talked about how much time he'd spent in the field there as a kid, kicking a ball or running around or just doing nothing. Then a barred owl flew over us and sat on a low branch. He looked at us and we looked back. And the sun went down with a bang. Boom, dark.

Then we walked home and settled in for a quiet evening and that's where we are now.

Except now the dog is growling at the cat and Matt is fake cursing at her, like the dad in A Christmas Story.

Good night.


Ginny Marie said...

I always wanted a brick Georgian house, which line the streets in the suburb next to ours. Just like those cottages, they seem very small to me now that I have two children! I wish I had gotten a walk in the time we were done with dinner it was very cold and dark. Oh, well. Happy Thanksgiving!

Amy said...

What a beautiful table! Betty has great style. Glad y'all had a good day.

You never know about those smaller houses...I never thought a 3 bedroom house would work for us, but we've been really happy here. Comfortable and cozy--so far at least! Plus I am actually sort of keeping it clean!

Anonymous said...

I liked reading this. Thank you for presenting. I like how that big table is filled up xo

Erika W said...

When Devin gets old enough to wonder what I thought about things (if he ever cares to wonder), I'm going to send him here and tell him that whatever Becky says is what I thought or should have thought or wanted to think. Like Hank, you have a knack for saying just the right thing in just the right way.

Lisa Lilienthal said...

Betty's table is 10 kinds of perfection! Glad you had a relaxing day. We had 17 people over and all went well except for the three hours we spent at emergency vet because of a broken doggie foot (umbrella stand was being moved and the huge concrete thing crumbled and flew everywhere, including crushing said poodle foot). Bless her heart, as we say.

delaine said...

Your post is lovely as is the table with Mr. Hank at the head. I know the dinner was delish and that nap hit the spot I bet. I love the image of y'all walking in the cold dusk and Matt telling the kids about his childhood.
We had a lovely dinner and day. Everybody is well, happy, and for that we can give many thanks! Gabriel was so fun and entertaining. We spent the afternoon and evening building towers with blocks. They left this morning and the house is too quiet!
By the way, how was the dressing?

Becky said...

Mom, the dressing was a triumph. The oyster got eaten much faster than the non oyster.

Lisa, what a freaky accident! Poor poodle!

Elizabeth said...

Hank truly looks like a kid in a television drama or comedy -- he is just adorable.

I'm glad that you had a happy thanksgiving --