a(nother) perfect storm...

I think I am the only person I know who is happy to have this snow day. We're in the midst of a big Nor'easter, expecting a foot of snow when all is said and done. I am happy to have the kids home -- Well, not so happy to have them home as much as I am not to have to run around all over the place. I still have things to get done, but I can stay in my pajamas all day if I want to, and that is exactly what I intend to do today! Even though we've been "home" all weekend we have been busy with soccer practices and games, play dates, sleep-overs and entertaining visiting relatives. The kids have had to be on their best behavior and their rooms needed to remain spotless. Today they can walk around with nests in their heads and while in their pajamas. Heck, I won't even make them make their beds.

We had a great big family brunch this morning. These days our crazybusyhectic lives don't even slow down for weekends. Since this is such a low key, slow paced kind of a day, and because I love breakfast foods and yet never have the time to cook and eat them, I decided to make a nice breakfast. I didn't serve it in the kitchen. We ate in the dining room and we took our time and enjoyed the scrambled eggs with cheese, home-fries with scallions, sausages and pancakes, warm maple syrup and orange juice. The best was getting up from the table and having people do the cleaning for me!

The kids have since been out in the snow and back in for hot cocoa. I'm at my kitchen desk as the snow still falls from the sky. The aroma of warm banana bread in the oven sets the tone for the afternoon to come. I am still in my pajamas. I have some laundry to fold and put away, but I think I am not going to get to that today.

I'll make dinner for tomorrow night -- a rich, baked macaroni and cheese with Gruyere, cheddar and goat cheeses that I will serve along with a salad of sweet baby lettuces and grape tomatoes. My girls are coming over. We were supposed to get together last week but life got in the way. And I'll bake some cookies. The batch I baked last week seems to have altogether disappeared. And I will hang with my family in the family room, on the big couch, in front of the fire. And perhaps I will read to them all from Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses... and they'll use their imaginations to envision all his wonderful scenes and imagery... and maybe they will be temporarily inspired to turn off the televisions and the Wii and play some good old fashioned imaginative play. One of the poems I will read to them will be Block City. And I will ask them to create their own. And as they build their empires with castles fit for Queens and Kings, I will pour myself a glass of wine and slip away with a book into a hot tub filled with bubbles... I couldn't have asked for a more perfect day!

Block City

by Robert Louis Stevenson

What are you able to build with blocks?
Castles and palaces, temples and docks.
Rain may keep raining, and others go roam,
But I can be happy and building at home.
Let the sofa be mountains, the carpet be sea,
There I'll establish a city for me:
A kirk and a mill and a palace beside,
And a harbour as well where my vessels may ride.
Great is the palace with pillar and wall,
A sort of a tower on the top of it all,
And steps coming down in an orderly way
To where my toy vessels lie safe in the bay.
This one is sailing and that one is moored:
Hark to the song of the sailors aboard!
And see, on the steps of my palace, the kings
Coming and going with presents and things!
Yet as I saw it, I see it again,
The kirk and the palace, the ships and the men,
And as long as I live and where'er I may be,
I'll always remember my town by the sea.