Saturday, December 26, 2015

Snowdrop and family

In the course of the weekend, all members of Snowdrop's Minneapolis and Chicago family will have passed through Madison to wish her a happy Christmas. It seemed obvious that this, therefore, should be the weekend when we also celebrate Snowdrop's first birthday. True, her real birthday isn't for ten days, but for her Midwest family, today is Snowdrop day.

But first thing's first.

I don't really eat a hefty breakfast with Ed -- I have a date with the small family group gathered at the Hubbard Avenue Diner. Still, Ed and I share at the very least a bowl of fruit and I down my first coffee of the day with him across the table.


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And then I dash off for a true breakfast at the Diner.

Again, no time for much writing. My photos give a sense, I hope, of how the day unfolds.

First, Snowdrop. at the Diner. It's her day after all.


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... The rest of us:


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While she plays with her uncle:


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... and her grandpa:


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... I have a chance to catch up with my Minneapolis daughter:


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But again, this is the littlest girl's day. Here's her favorite food at the Diner: grapes.


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She does make it to everyone's lap at one point or another...


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And this makes her very happy indeed.


But we don't linger for too long. I, for one, have things to do in preparation for tonight's "birthday" dinner.


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(While I'm at it, I throw together a Ligurian lemon cake -- made with lemons, of course, and olive oil. That's for tomorrow's brunch. )


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My main focus this afternoon is on again recalling my Parma cooking session with Ricarda. Time to roll out the tortelli!


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What I've forgotten is Patrizia's words -- cooking Parma foods is so time consuming! Making the two fillings -- squash and also ricotta-chard -- that's nothing. But rolling out the dough to paper thin strips and stuffing each tortelli -- hours.

The dinner came together because my little girl and eventually her husband came over to help me.


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What a team we were!


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(When Snowdrop showed up with her parents and her Chicago family, we were almost ready for them. Almost.)


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Once again, the girl moves from one set of arms to the next...


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Finally, dinner. And what a meal it was, including the appetizers -- the prosciutto, the parmiggiano, and because this is the most special of days -- the precious traditional Balsamic.

We feasted on it all!



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(parents and aunt and uncle from Chicago)


(FYI, Snowdrop preferred the squash to the ricotta-chard. Perhaps the crushed amaretti biscuits in the squash stuffing clinched the deal for her.)


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Then comes the cake, which arrived with grandpa and bubbie from Chicago.


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We sang, we toasted, and the sweet sweet almost one-year-old sailed through it all heroically.


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(Yes, she loves cake!)


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Presents. Birthday presents. Following upon Christmas, you could say that this was just too much celebrating, but the little one was delighted each time someone placed colorful wrappings before her.


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It was a glorious day, with the terrific ending of having my younger girl and husband do the bulk of the clean up for me.


You could say that this was Snowdrop's day, but to me, it felt as if someone has just been piling gifts on my lap.

It's been one beautiful holiday weekend.

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