Friday, January 29, 2016

Weekend Eve Thoughts for 1/29

It’s after noon, I’ve been up for hours, and I’m still not awake. Still groggy from all the Dreamtime activity! This is the week for familiar dreams, I guess; I must have some unfinished subconscious biz that needs addressing or a lesson that needs learning….

Anyway, here are some Weekend Eve thoughts:

FIVE THINGS TO BE HAPPY ABOUT (from The Happy Book by Barbara Ann Kipfer):

  • Dimmers for lights.
  • Onion domes and stained-glass windows against a forest setting.
  • Pails of first-run sap 
  •  Quilted kitchen appliance covers.
  • Raisin sauce.


  • Good customer service.
  • Homemade ‘stone soup.’
  • The mail-order catalog from The Vermont Country Store ~ “Purveyors of the Practical and Hard-to-Find.” (In which you can still buy Evening of Paris perfume in the little blue bottle. Remember seeing that on the shelves at Woolworth’s? You can get a catalog mailed to you, too!)
  • Miniature yellow Legal pads. (They are as much fun to write lists on as thin-lined steno pads. I get goosebumps just thinking about it.)
  • Drawing a pretend tattoo with a Sharpie™ marker.

            (Because I’d love to know.)

SOMETHING (I think is) COOL:
‘Stone soup’ you say? Here’s the story, courtesy of Stone Soup Magazine. (There is a BUNCH of interesting info about the tale on the magazine's site. Check it out!)

The Original Stone Soup Story from 1808,
“To Make Stone Soup”

A traveler, apparently wearied, arrived one morning at a small village that lies to the north of Schauffhausen, on the road toe Zurich, in Switzerland. A good woman sat spinning and singing at the door of her cottage; he came up to her; talked first about the roughness of the roads, and then of the prospect of a luxuriant vintage along the banks of the Rhine: at last he asked her if she had any fire?

“To be sure I have! How should I dress my dinner else?”

“Oh, then,” said the Traveler, “as your pot is on, you can give me a little warm water.”

“To be sure I can! But what do you want with warm-water?” 

“If you will lend me a small pot,” said the Traveler, “I’ll show you.”

“Well! you shall have a pot. There, now what do you want with it?”

“I want, said the Traveler, “to make a mess of stone soup!” 

“Stone soup!” cried the woman, “I never heard of that before. Of what will you make it?”

“I will show you in an instant,” said the man. So untying his wallet, he produced a large smooth pebble. “Here,” he cried “is the principal ingredient. Now toast me a large slice of bread, hard and brown. Well, now attend to me.”

The stone was infused in warm water; the bread was toasted, and put into the pot with it. “Now,” said the Traveler, “let me have a bit of bacon, a small quantity of sauerkraut, pepper, and salt, onions, celery, thyme.” In short, he demanded all the necessary materials.

The good woman had a store cupboard and a well cropped garden; so that these were procured in an instant, and the cookery proceeded with great success. When it was finished, the kind hostess, who had watched the operation with some anxiety, and from time to time longed to taste the soup, was indulged. She found it excellent. She had never before tasted any that was so good. She produced all the edibles that her cottage afforded; and spreading her table, she, with the Traveler, made a hearty meal, of which the stone soup formed a principal part.

When he took his leave, he told the good woman, who had carefully washed the stone, that as she has been so benevolent to him, he would, in return, make her a present of it.
“Where did you get it?” said she.

“Oh,” he replied, “I have brought it a considerable way; and it is a stone of that nature, that if be kept clean, its virtue will never be exhausted, but, with the same ingredients, it will always make as good a soup as that which we have this day eaten.”

The poor woman could hardly set any bounds on her gratitude; and she and the Traveler parted highly satisfied with each other. Proud of this discovery, she, in general terms, mentioned it to her neighbors. By this means the recipe was promulgated; and it was in the course of many experiments at length found, that other pebbles would make as good soup as that in her possession. The viand now became fashionable through the Canton, and was indeed so generally approved, as to find its way to most of the peasants’ tables, where stone stoup used frequently be served as the first dish.

Wikipedia has this to add: “Stone Soup is an old folk story in which hungry strangers compel the local people of a town into sharing their food. In varying traditions, the stone has been replaced with other common inedible objects, and therefore the fable is also known as button soup, wood soup, nail soup, and axe soup.” I DID NOT KNOW THIS. 

Stone Soup is a fun recipe to make with kids. My own Girlz and I used to make it together on occasion. And you’d be surprised how relatively easy it is to get young picky-eaters to eat some veggies if you let them have a hand in their preparation.

I walked in to the Village yesterday to buy some local honey at the co-op. On the way home I passed a Goldfish cracker in the road (message: “Today you may feel like a fish out of water, but smile anyway and just keep swimming”). Not once did I slip on any ice, and the brisk breeze and bright sunshine did me a world of good. It reminded me that my favorite thing about working full-time at an office was the walk to and from the Metro Transit bus stop. The world and the weather were a comfort to me on my way to and from that stressful environment. Yes, some days it could be horrid outside, but it was always interesting. And there was the sunrise. And in winter, the sunset. And, of course, that moment or two to connect with The Meaningful.

Happy Weekend Eve. And may your weekend have some dipped-in-gold moments in it. And a book! And a comfy couch, a warm afghan, a hot beverage, maybe a jigsaw puzzle, and a beloved film or TV show. 

Mmmmmm. Thinking now.... What would you choose? A cup of tea with some Jane Austen? Hot chocolate with ‘Bonanza?’ For me, I’m on a kick right now with hot turmeric milk and back-to-back episodes of Big Bang Theory. What would be your favorite combination?

Have fun. And get outside for a moment! :)

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