Sunday, 18 December 2011

Little Things and Great Friends

bright, sunny day - gorgeous - temps minus 8

Brittle day - in every way. heavy frost, like crystals clinging to everything. In the sunshine it is just spectacular.

Had a very fun day yesterday. Susan arrived from Montreal just before noon. We had a coffee together, then she and I hopped in the car and drove to Vermont. Stopped at the Pinnacle Peddler, in Richford, for lunch - then onto Enosburg Falls and the Hannaford store. It's a huge grocery store. Because it's american, there are all sorts of brands we don't get in Canada. Very fun. Susan really loves to cook and knows food - so I just tagged along and impulse bought. (two different kinds of egg nogg! Yum)

then home. We're allowed to bring groceries across the border - we just declare it and show the receipt. The Canadian border guards read it to make sure we aren't bringing in alcohol or tobacco or guns, I guess. Thank God egg nogg isn't considered a drug - yet.

Got home by about 4:30. It was pitch black already. Wow. Makes 6pm feel like 10pm.

Michael and I had a meeting to go to last night - and Susan had already planned to cook. We got home about 7:30. Desperately cold night. How wonderful to come through the door and smell all those wonderful aromas. You can see Susan doing the last minute preparations.

We put out the Christmas plates and set the table with Christmas decorations and crackers. Exchanged gifts. Susan had baked Michael eccles cakes (his favorite and a real treat) and made me a batch of raspberry shrub drink (my favorite). We gave Susan a tacky/fun New York Christmas decoration - since she loves New York more than anyone I know, including New Yorkers. And a personally signed Ian Rankin (she also loves him).

Our propane fireplace, after working brilliantly for a month, suddenly isn't working. Very disappointing, as the cold, and Christmas, close in. What's off, besides the fact it was working so well for so long, is that the flame doesn't just go out, but the pilot light goes out too. Bob, our construction manager, is on the case with AJR Lacroix - where we bought it. Fingers crossed they can solve it soon. But still - there are far worse things! And the rest of the house is working wonderfully.

Last night was the first real test of our geothermal in winter. Got down to minus 15 overnight, but it kept plugging away - keeping us snug and warm. Such a relief!

Now we're enjoying a quiet afternoon. Susan's headed home and we're watching football. Lovely not to have, or need, an agenda. tomorrow some chores in Cowansville - then home we hope for the fireplace repair person.

Watching Denver and New England. Great game so far.


bgpringle said...

As for groceries brought back into Canada - you can't bring back potatoes, blueberries or pet food - why? I'm not sure....

Mary said...

Sounds like a wonderful weekend! Love hearing about your daily adventures.

We also watched the Denver/New England game, and it was a great match! Of course, happy that "our" Patriots won, but it was interesting to the very end.

Hope your next few days are relaxing and cozy.


Karen said...

And we go to Canada to buy things we can't get here -- McLaren's Pickled Onions, Murchie Tea, Neilsen candies (I know -- they are now owned by a different company). We can't bring back fresh fruits or vegetables -- yet they are in our grocery stores.
Like you, I treasure my trips to Vancouver and am planning to go after the 1st -- birthday treat for my daughter and granddaughter.
Happy Christmas.

Linda said...

As we approach the longest, darkest night of the year, I just want to say how much I appreciate the lights that everyone displays - candles in windows, draping trees, along streets. They let us know we not alone in the cold. Very best wishes for a bright, warm, together-with-loved-ones Christmas to all!
Especially to you and your Michael, Louise. Your books and this blog are such gifts to us. Peace.

lil Gluckstern said...

Your home is a warm place of light in all that cold, just like your blog. And you and Michael created it.

Track Potato Lady said...

Aunt Agatha's Bookshop placed A Trick of Light on their best mysteries of 2011 list. Wanted to let you know in case you had not seen it! Congratulations on all your successes and many more in the years to come. Cannot wait for the next book! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Janis Rothermel