(apologies for the formatting woes ... I can't figure out how to fix this post.)
We're right in the path of Tropical Storm Hanna as it churns up the East Coast, so our usual Saturday activities have us cooped inside today, hopefully safe from the storm (which isn't so bad right now, but is expected to get more intense later this afternoon and today). Still, as you can tell from the photo taken just a few minutes ago from inside our front door (those spots are from the camera, not funnel clouds) it's a gloomy, overcast day.
Which means one thing: homemade soup!
On gray days like these, I have to make soup. So while grocery shopping this morning, I picked up some typical soup ingredients: potatoes, carrots, onions, garlic. Along with the canned tomatoes and veggie broth in the pantry, we were good to go.
I started browsing through A Year of Crockpotting and http://www.allrecipes.com/. None of the recipes had the exact ingredients that I had on hand. I'm not too good at improvising recipes, but can manage all right if I have most of the ingredients. I opened The Best Slow Cooker Recipe Cookbook and found a recipe that I'd made previously. I know this because I'd written a note next to the recipe. (That's another one of my cooking compulsions. I like to write notes in my cookbooks after I've made a particular dish.)
"Made on 12/30/2000 during a 9" snowstorm," I'd written below the ingredients and instructions for Fresh
Vegetable Soup with Garbanzo Beans.
We were indeed in the middle of a storm then. Only 11 days earlier, I'd answered my phone in my office and learned that, although we'd gotten a positive pregnancy test from our latest in-vitro attempt, our 160 hours of parenthood were over. This was what the specialists called a chemical pregnancy, one that would end before the congratulatory flower arrangements on our dining room table would wilt and die.
Almost 8 years later, The Dean is tracking Hanna online and the kids are watching Hannah Montana on demand.
The Dean has zoomed onto our town and reports that there's a bright spot in the midst of the storm. Indeed, it is a lot brighter now than when that photo above was taken. Later this afternoon and tonight, however, we can expect two months worth of rain and intense winds.
"Maybe we'll see a rainbow tonight or tomorrow," said Betty.
Yes, maybe we will. Maybe we will.