Monday, February 22, 2010

Fairies and Such

These long gray days are the hardest of the year. Once Christmas is put away, it seems like there is nothing to do but hold your breath and wait until the wind begins to blow up something exciting: maybe some spring thundershowers or some body's brush-burning getting out of hand so you can go help fight a fire with your neighbor. Exciting stuff you do in the spring, you know.

We're doing everything we can to hurry along February. We dressed the shop's windows with spring, including Andy, our doll, who is delighted to be a May Day fairy (above). Last night I slept with the bedroom windows open and listened for frogs (I didn't hear any, plus I nearly froze this morning when it was time to get up. My poor husband traipsed into the living room and slept by the fire in the middle of the night he was so cold!) Tickles, our big fat smokey-gray kitty is shrugging off his fluffy winter coat in big hair balls all over the yard. And sometimes I even imagine I can smell lilacs when I go outside...

But still, it's cold.

And still we are making chili and vegetable soup and roast beef and potatoes and pots of beans for supper because we are so cold all the time. I'm hungry for barbecue hamburgers and hot dogs and an off-brand of really salty crinkled potato chips.

I made a strawberry-banana pie yesterday hoping it would feel like summer. It didn't feel like summer at all. It felt all wrong. It felt sort of lonely somehow. What I should have done was make a pumpkin pie or a peach cobbler or maybe some bread pudding.

And that's how it is this time of year. All lonely. All gray. All cold. All wrong. And at the end of the day a person just feels all used up. There are no frogs to listen to outside your window...

but the coyotes have had babies. They're celebrating and calling to one another in little excited yips. So maybe -- maybe they know something is going to happen?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Aprons and Strawberry-Banana Pie

Aprons, of all things. That's what I've been thinking about lately.

I went a couple days ago and finally chose some fabric to make a ridiculously-ruffled apron. I've been collecting patterns, too, but like always, I tossed aside the patterns and decided I'd just make it up.

I'm not a gifted seamstress. My sister is. She sews everything PERFECTLY. Last week she wore something to a friend's house that she had made in high school and it looked spotlessly professional. My sewing looks pretty cobbled together and like I got sick of the project before it was finished.

Anyway, I'm cobbling together this apron and I want to make about eight ruffles running across it in all different colors. But my thread keeps breaking because it's about 25-plus years old. I said several words in a row, several times, that I shouldn't have. Probably hurt my little wiener dogs' ears.

Then yesterday, I went and bought new red thread. I wanted to sew today but had to work finding pictures for a bank we're working with at the shop and then I have to make a strawberry-banana pie for a meeting tonight.

And, I have to make this pie without my new ruffled apron on.

If I could have worn my apron when I made my pie, I would have felt like Grace Kelley.

Or even someone better.

Like my mom -- the world's ABSOLUTE BEST PIE MAKER!

Instead, I just feel like a jittery, tired, overwhelmed, bumfuzzled housewife who is not nearly desperate enough to even be the slightest bit interesting. Kind of like that old Martha Stewart. Except without the makeup.