Part of me wants to carry on to you about all the inconveniences this rude season has begun to bestow upon me as of late. But I won't do that. Instead, I am going to challenge myself to list at least five things I appreciate about Ms. Winter. If I don't change my attitude, it's only going to make the next month and a half less enjoyable than it could be. I don't like to live my life waiting to get to a time or a place (ex. vacation, retirement, summer), because if I do, I could be missing out on something along the way. I've long liked the line by John Lennon, "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans".
So here I go, attempting to embrace what I have in this time and place. Five great things about winter, in no particular order:
- The birds that live in the evergreen shrub in front of my porch. They are around in summer too, but they tend to hug in tight to the shrub and are less apt to fly away when I come outside. They chirp throughout the day and it makes me smile.
- Zuree, of course. She loves the snow and the cold. We recently went out for our night walk during the peak of a blizzard and walked through the cemetery behind our house with over a foot of snow, into the powerful winds and the blinding snow. At one point I looked back to see a 40 pound snowbeast walking behind me. Her face was completely snow covered and we could hardly see where we were going, but she was practically trotting along as if nothing was happening. She was perfectly content being outside.
- Soup. It's just not as enjoyable in warm seasons.
- The Somerville winter farmers market. They have cider donuts if you get there early enough. There's also a musician playing fun cover tunes.
- Snowshoeing. I haven't done it much this year, but will try to take advantage of the remaining snow.
This is also a great way to cook broccoli.
Sauteed Kale with Balsamic
1 large bunch of kale, stems removed and leaves coarsely chopped
1 tblspn olive oil
1/2 tspn red hot chili flakes
2 cloves garlic, minced or sliced
1/4 cup veggie broth
2 tblspns balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
1. Heat the oil in a large sautee pan over medium heat. Add the chili flakes and let them sizzle for a moment. Add the garlic and cook for a minute, but do not brown.
2. Add kale and then toss it around in the oil mixture.
3. Add broth. Once to a boil. lower heat, cover and let the kale cook until most of the broth is absorbed, about 5 minutes.
4. Remove cover and add salt and pepper to taste. Turn off heat and add vinegar.