Friday, January 23

Warmth {Beef Bone Broth, Pasta e Fagioli, Rustic Onion Soup}

"I love you with my heart and I love you with my liver, if I had you in my mouth I'd spit you in the river..."

She'd always chant this little rhyme as she bundled us up to go outside in the cold. Crooked fingers fumbling with the zipper pulls on our jackets, always zipping them up a little too high and wrapping our scarves just a little too tight, before planting a wet kiss on our cheeks and giving us a gentle shove out the door into the snow.

I don't know why, but I woke up this morning with this little poem in my head.  I may have dreamt of her last night.  If so, the dream is lost in that black hole that separates sleep from reality.  Perhaps it will return tonight.  In any case, the sky was grey, the fog so thick that the sun barely made it through the bedroom window.  I had gotten a text from the kids' school hours earlier announcing a snow day, so I slept much later than I should have.

With the little verse still playing over and over in my head, I pulled myself from the warmth of my bed and crept down the hall to the kitchen to put the kettle on the stove.  Everything was perfectly still, the floor beneath the window was cold as ice...

I've thought of her every day since she died, but this morning especially, she was on my mind.  Always so concerned that we were warm and comfortable.  Her house was a temple of warmth - from the various throws and blankets folded neatly on the love seat, to the space heater on the floor by her feet, to the chunky, mustard-coloured cardigan she wore over a turtle neck every single day (a Kleenex rolled tightly into the fold of her sleeve), to the wall of west-facing windows that let in the winter sunlight.  And there was always a pot of soup kept hot on the back burner of the stove.  When we'd come in, rosy cheeked, with frozen hair, chattering teeth and icicles dangling from our noses, she sit us down at the table, wrap one of those warm blankets around our shoulders, crank up the space heater, and ladle us a steaming bowl of soup.  Always made with her meaty, gelatinous bone broth.