Day #4

Alarmingly, this stage-the meal-ahead technique is working.

So much so that this morning I went to a bakery in Salem with Olive, then strolled around the Peabody Essex Museum grounds, not in the car as usual but on foot, coffee in hand, and had a chance to stand amongst the Stickwork exhibit, by the artist Patrick Dougherty.


We wandered through these massive stick structures and my heart thumped hard. Human nests. Brilliant blue sky. Divine. We walked back to the car breathing in the crisp air, happy for a chance to take a breath and actually — amazingly — enjoy the morning.

I have a lentil butternut squash soup ready in the crockpot for tonight, a loaf of Pumpkin Cornmeal bread for dinner under my arm, and a salad to construct.

Let’s not forget the pie girls have yet to return from the grocery store this morning, make their crusts, peel their apples or measure out their pecans.

But that is not my worry.

In the fridge: Parboiled and peeled baby white onions. Brussels washed and cut. Turkey. Squash cubed. Cranberry ready. The ingredients for mashed potatoes. Tablecloth accounted for.

Tomorrow morning there are still a few things, such as cream sauce for Grandad’s onions and Lucy’s corn pudding besides the stuffing and mashed potatoes that have to be done. But today I may rake a few leaves and have an extra cup of coffee. And think about nests. All kinds, near and far, full of family and assorted friends.

I’ll let you know how those pies go.



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