Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Just Before The Break Of Dawn

For Abby, freshly made blueberry pancakes and orange juice, for Beccy and Matt, four grilled rashers of bacon each, sandwiched between a poached egg, and wrapped inside two slices of toast. Steaming mugs of piping hot tea. Tea also for Sam too, but not just yet, he likes to have his bowl of porridge first, sweetened with a spoon of honey and a splash of swirlly cream. Three vitamin pills a piece for all, laid opposite the stools at the breakfast bar.

Pottering around, the news on in the backround, hound in his basket, it's still dark outside as I begin the rounds to chase the sandman from our house. Today is the first day back at school, sleepier eyed than usual, they stumble to the kitchen.

All finished up and full, they scatter to their clothes and mirrors, plenty time still left to primp, it's only seven ten. Time enough yet to hunt down those missing books and leaking pens.

Jake, nose a-twich, eyes trailing each scrumptious plate, waits, alert, watching as I scrape, stack and rinse. His reward now, mixing his kibble with the left-over swill, I place his bowl in his corner, retreating to the sink. With flappy tail, jaws crunching over the clatter of the dishwasher cycle, he scatters splatters of sploge across the floor, titbits to hoover up as pudding.

Dawn peeks quietly through the window. (Better her, than Nutty Nora - wink).

What's this?

Oh look - look!

Snowflakes are silently slipping against the pane, softly drifting down to coat the lawns and dip the glen in a fluffy, sparkling white marshmallow wrap.

Isn't it beautiful?

Each individual tree is a frosty scuplture, every branch crisply framed in boughs of prisine lace.

A thunder of feet on the stair, the door flies open as the girls spill in. Beaming faces announce "It's a Snow Day!" Magic spreads via text, all lessons on the island banished for the day.

Already out in the half dawn light, still in (now sopping wet) pajama bottoms, Matt is rolling up the snow-clad garden, leaving a carved, naked swathe of freshly mottled, frozen, flattened, green grass in his wake.

Following the fashion, Beccy slip-slides to join in, her footprints melding with his, smothered echos in the velvet snow.

..As Jake gives advice to roll down, not up the bloomin' hill (having chased enough balls to know).

The sun fully awake, so is Abby, eager and armed for the job, her enthusiasm is only outweighed by her, umm ..

Clumsiness (oopsie, sorry Matt)! Nothing a little patch up won't fix, eh?

Moods brighter than the reprised day, snowballs and sleds are gathered, Little Stevie enticed over, and all gloomy thoughts of upcoming exams get packed away beneath the fresh promise of this stolen holiday.

Hear that? What began as a whisper at dawn, is now a fully-throttled scream of pelting snowballs and thundering ice-rides hurtling down the drive. It's turning a wee bit too hairy for the likes of Sam and me out here..

..'Tis now safest for us indoors, with a nice, warming cuppa' tea!


Scott from Oregon said...


Akelamalu said...

Lots of schools here were closed too. I haven't moved out all day. :)

Leslie: said...

I think we might see a bit of sun today after the fog burns off.

jinksy said...

I did enjoy your first two snow pictures, as well as your two pretty girls in a later one, but the best bit of all was the hot cuppa waiting at the end!

Fletch said...

Four rashers and TWO eggs, please.

And not before midday, the very earliest!

BRUNO said...

I'd get-up at 4 in the morning for THAT breakfast!

And then go back to bed, an' get-up AGAIN for the same about noon...!

Anonymous said...

Beautifully written, my dear Shrinky. The morning snow was your muse.

Hilary said...

Ooooh pretty pictures.. and gotta love that PacManSnowman that Matt was creating. ;)

Nancy said...

What a great day! The first one back and it turns out to be a snow day? How lucky was that?? Thanks for the smiles.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on POTW! And LOVE the picts!

LadyFi said...

Beautiful pictures. Isn't snow magical - no matter how old or young we are?

Shrinky said...

High five, Scott!

Akelamalu, I was up at 5.30am this morning, extra early in case the schools were open and Matt and the girls had to walk the usual drive to their coach stop. We don't get told until 7am what the decision is - grrrrrr. Wish they'd just close for the week and be done with it. As the kids have exams scheduled, I can't just keep them off.

Leslie, we've been told not to take the car out unless it's a matter of life or death!

Hello Jinksy, I had a lot of fun with the camera yesterday, but I have to confess being snowed in is starting to lose it's shine now.. hope you are faring better over your way?

Hi Fletch, that's what I like to see, a man with a good appetite. Oh, and these early starts are killers, I'm a night owl, never take myself off to bed when I should (yawn)..

Hi Bruno, coming right up hon, just remember to leave a decent tip by the side of your plate (wink)!

Aw, cheers Chewy, I really had fun yesterday, the post wrote itself ((x)).

OMG, haha, yes - PACMAN!!! (We are both showing our age here, y'know). Oh, thanks for the kind inclusion on your Post of the Week, it was a lovely surprise (smile).

Yeah Nancy, talk about a build up, eh? They are still snowed in with me, doubtless, if this continues through to the end of the week, the fun will stop and the cabin fever will begin to set in..

Hi Merideth, Thanks for giving me the news on my mention in Hilary's Post of the Week, it was a lovely surprise to wake up to (grin).

Fat, frumpy and fifty... said...

congrats on POTW..these snow posts are great....

Shrinky said...

LadiFi, hi, thanks for stopping by! We don't get snow very often, we may as well make the most of it when it does come!

Hi Saz, cheers hon, it sure did put a smile on my face to find myself up there.

Brian Miller said...

i love snow days! they are so magical and fun. we had about 18 inches of snow two weeks ago. shut everything down for 2-3 much fun with the boys. congrats ont he POTW mention!

Daryl said...

Congrats on POTW mention from Hilary

Land of shimp said...

Hello Shrinky, first of all congratulations on the post of the week. Secondly, good lord, it would have to be a tremendously special occasion to warrant that particular breakfast in this house! I'm terribly impressed by the variety of things you offered. Here when one person has pancakes, everyone one does, same for eggs, or oatmeal.

I did love the pictures, and your entire family is just flat-out gorgeous, but the thing that really struck me is how loved they must know they are. It's funny the little things we do for the people we love that offer the proof of that love.

Like a breakfast fit for a king, or a post written about a day off. For such cold subject matter, what a warming post, thank you for it.

Shrinky said...

Hi Daryl, thanks hon!

Hey, thanks for stopping by, Land of Shrimp. Oh, I only do the breakfast run every other week, they are no where near so indulged when it's their fathers shift, I promise you! I don't do lunch, they can forage for themselves for that, and there is only ever one main evening meal on offer, that they can or either leave, their choice.

Sunshine said...

wow............. amazing shots hahah Happy New year..>!

Take care


Maalie said...

Oh, have the wood nymphs turned into snow nymphs?

Sniffles and Smiles said...

As always, Carol, you work your magic on any subject...but what beauty you had to mold here...Your photos are fantastic!!! And your words, descriptive images...I feel I am there!!! Wish I could have joined you and Sam for that cuppa!!! ;-) Hooray for Snow Days!!!! Fantastic post! Love you! Janine XO

Cedar said...

Even now in my later years there is still nothing more exciting than a snow day!! Beautiful pictures.

jay said...

What a lovely post! I'm almost there with you, Shrinky! And I would be, right there with you and Sam in the warm kitchen!

I like to watch the snow from indoors these days, though a brisk walk with the dog is nice. :)

Shrinky said...

Hi, happy new year to you too, Sabi!

Ha! Well spotted Maalie, looks that way, doesn't it?

Oh Janine, you do leave the lovliest of comments, thank you for your kind words (smiling) it means a lot (x)

Hello Brian, thanks for popping by! Yes, some days, usually the unplanned ones, can turn out simply magical that way, can't they?

Hey cedar, welcome aboard! Snow brings out the little kid in all of us, I think.

Hi Jay, tell you what, I'll stick the kettle on next time you pop by this isle, is that a deal

Mojo said...

No limericks this time. Promise. Too much lovley 'bout this piece for that.

blunoz said...

You are a very talented writer! Thanks for sharing your story with us. Happy New Year and congrats on Post of the Week!

simon said...

how very cool.. ( get it? cool? ahahahah!)

SJ said...

Wow looks like a fun time. I am booking my tickets to Craggy island right away :)

Shrinky said...

Haha, yeah Mojo, tempted as I was to invite all responses in the form of a Limerick again, for some curious reason I seem to have found myself holding back on that this time (grin).

Hey blunoz, with words like those, you can pop by anytime! Welcome aboard, and thank you for that.. happy new year to you and yours, too.

Oh Simon (groan), I do so love your sharp wit and classy repartee - giggle. I'm freezing me toes off here.

SJ, you might find all the airports closed, best bring a sleeping bag!

imbeingheldhostage said...

What a magical post. There's something really special about snow days and I am not complaining that they just keep coming. Your pictures with this post were so fun!

Life with Kaishon said...

Oh, what a beautiful post. I loved every word :) And the pictures were outstanding!

San said...

Such a beautiful family snow day. Shrinky, you make me feel nostalgic for the days when my kids still lived at home.

Joker the Lurcher said...

what a magic post!

Shrinky said...

Hi imbeingheldhostage, aw cheers hon, yeah, it's been quite a time for us all with all this white stuff about, hasn't it?

Welcome to my humble abode, Life with Kaishon, how lovely to see you in here. Thank you for the kind words (smile).

Oh San, there are days I simply LONG for my nest to empty, believe me!

Hey Joker, thanks for stopping by, it's good to see you in here - I must pop over for a vist!