I wanted to write about snow days, a funeral, and food during the actual snowfall, but my internet went down. So, I’m writing today.
First, things first. My mother died on January 27, 2022, due to complications from Covid-19. We planned her funeral for last Thursday, but then the snow started to fall, and it fell for two days straight. In our neck of the woods, we received about five inches. I just couldn’t see trying to have a funeral with so much snow and ice on the ground. Frankly, I was afraid someone would get hurt. In fact, on Saturday, I fell in a parking lot on some black ice. I didn’t break anything, but I’m bruised.
We rescheduled the funeral for tomorrow, February 8, 2022, at 9:00 a.m., at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Oklahoma City. Since Mom was cremated, there’s no hurry, but I didn’t want to have the funeral and then inter her ashes later. I sincerely appreciate everyone’s condolences. Thank you. Please know she was in terrible pain and very, very sick for a long time. It’s said so often that it feels like a cliche, but I believe she’s in a better place and is reunited with my sister. The hardest part about all of this is I’m the last one in my family, and it’s a strange unsettling feeling.
I have a quick story. I am very fond of birds. I always have been. I love bluebirds best of all. Each year, we have several Bluebird pairs who nest in our garden along with lots of other backyard favorites like Cardinals, Dark-eyed Juncos, Robins, Black-capped Chickadees, Mourning Doves, etc.
Male bluebird scouts start looking for nesting places in February, and I often see them as I walk my property.
When I was moving my mother’s things out of her assisted living facility, I was feeling quite sad. I had a trash bag to throw into the dumpster. Suddenly, I heard a male bluebird singing his heart out. I looked for him in the trees. He was right above me, and he kept pace with me all the way to the dumpster. As I looked up, he sang and sang. I thanked him for his song, and then he flew away leaving my soul a little lighter. I think my mother or sister sent that bluebird to me.
When we had to move the funeral, I began cooking because I craved comfort food, and I find cooking soothing. On snowy days, for me, comfort food means soups and stews. I made slow cooker beef and bean chili, green chile stew, except I made my own green chile sauce with fresh tomatillos. I finally made a French farmers’ soup from Fine Cooking which incorporated both beans and a lot of root vegetables. I shared some of this on my Instagram, and now I’m sharing the recipe links.
After the storm, the weather cleared, and we had the bluest skies I’ve ever seen. I’m sharing those here.
Blue skies, soup, and bluebirds. Let’s take each day and enjoy it as much as possible even when it’s difficult. Better times are ahead, the snow has melted, and it’s only 41 days until spring.