Posted tagged ‘milk and sugar’

“In the kitchen Valeria was making breakfast, his aunt never made breakfast even though Carlo insisted for years that a hotel hoping to cater to French and Americans must offer breakfast. “It’s a lazy man’s meal.”, she always said. “What laggard expects to eat before doing any work?”

January 8, 2016

Today is a pleasant winter’s day. The sun is shining, the breeze is slight and it’s warm, winter warm anyway. I slept until after 11. Ever since Colorado, I’ve tended to sleep late, but it’s purely coincidental. I’m just sleeping late. As my mother would say, “You must need it.”

Gracie and I were out yesterday and got four errands done. We’re good for a while now.

January was always a nothing month when I was a kid. We went back to school and were stuck there with no days off until February vacation.That was like five or six weeks away. After school we were mostly stuck inside unless there was some snow for sledding or a warm afternoon for biking. I remember the boredom, the walking around sighing when there was nothing to do. I couldn’t go out. It was too cold. I didn’t have a new book, playing games was boring and TV was sparse in the early afternoons. Stretched in front of me were endless hours or what seemed like endless hours until Superman. I’m sure I must have driven my mother crazy. Usually I’d decide to read a book I hadn’t read in a while. I’d drown out every sound and be drawn into the pages. I’d forget about time. Superman surprised me. He seemed to come so soon.

My mother never made soups. She served Campbell’s. My favorite was her tomato soup as she added milk or cream instead of water. It was a thick, tasty soup perfect for dunking grilled cheese sandwiches. The two always went together. They were lunch supreme when it was cold outside.

My mother served oatmeal or eggs for breakfast in the winter. I liked the oatmeal but mostly I liked the milk and the sugar I’d put on it. My mother served the oats cooked on the stove which were never as white as the milk and were sometimes lumpy. It didn’t matter. I liked oatmeal because it was hot. The eggs were usually soft boiled and served in egg cups. My mother cut the toast into strips and put them on the plate with the egg cup and the egg. The top of the egg was open and we’d dunk the toaster strips into the yoke. That was a great breakfast.

Winter had the best breakfasts, always hot so we could face the elements. The rest of the year was usually cereal from the box, a pale version of breakfast, except on Sundays when we’d have bacon and eggs and toast, breakfast supreme.

“June suns, you cannot store them To warm the winter’s cold..”

November 23, 2013

The weatherman says to expect a cold front starting tomorrow. I just bought a new hat, a wool knitted hat with ear flaps, so bring on the cold. I think I’m going to look quite fashionable.

This morning I watched leaves fall one at a time from the big oak tree by the deck. They fluttered as they fell. I watched the birds at the feeders, mostly drab gold finches, eating thistle and sunflowers seeds. When Gracie comes in from outside, her ears are cold. The other morning a thin layer of ice-covered the water in the bird bath. I don’t hear people outside any more. Winter is coming.

Winter brings back memories. I remember the hissing of the radiators in the house where I grew up and how the windows in the morning sometimes had a thin layer of ice on the inside. I’d use my nail to write my name. We always wore warm pajamas and sock slippers. For breakfast my mother made oatmeal and added milk and sugar. The walk to school was quickest in winter. The worst part of the walk was passing the field where the wind whipped across and seemed to go through every layer of my clothes to touch my bones. Getting to school was always welcomed. It was warm.

In winter there was never enough space in the cloak room outside my classroom. Winter coats were bulky and the hooks were small. I’d stuff my mittens and my hat in my sleeves then try to get my coat to hang. Sometimes it stayed on the hook while other times it was held up by the coats around it all jammed together. On the coldest days I’d leave my sweater on. The nuns didn’t care. They sometimes wore black ones with buttons.

Getting coats to go home was always done in rows. The nun would announce our row, and we’d get our coats and bring them into class and get dressed there while the other rows went and got theirs. Sometimes the nuns had to zipper coats. They never seemed to mind. I conquered zippers early though sometimes it took two tries. The hat came next and the mittens last. We’d stand in a line in the classroom until the bell was rung to dismiss us then we’d walk to the door and into the cold.