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A Hard Snow’s a-Gonna Fall: Dispatches from Snowmageddon Part One (the Prequel)

Snowpocalypse 2010, for us, started with a naked Yoda.


Actually, it started with the first few flakes blinking through the sky as I picked the twins up at school.  I had dropped them off with the reminder that if the snow started falling in earnest before school was over, I was going to come to school and get them early and they were to come into the hallway without a fuss.  But the snow had held off until right before it was time to leave, regardless of the fact that I had been dreamily staring out the window for the prior hour.

While peeing and reading a magazine (multitasking!), I found a recipe for scones.  Scones?  I’ve never even liked scones but suddenly I needed to have scones.  And that pretty much sums up the feeling that Snowpocalyse has brought out in me.  Stock up on 24 eggs just in case the only thing I feel like eating is eggs?  Makes sense.  Buy two extra bottles of Delsym just in case someone in the house develops a cough?  Why not.

Our house is full of ingredients and art supplies and cleaning supplies yet my brain can only focus on what is not here.  And whatever is not here is what my heart fills with a longing to have.  I was suddenly consumed with the idea of making veggie broth except having not planned for this idea, lacked the necessary celery.  It seemed worth lying down on the kitchen floor and moaning about it.  “Nooooooooooooooo celery.  And we’ll be snowed in for weeks.  And all I want is soup.”

“So make something else,” Josh said unhelpfully.  “Make a baked potato for dinner.”

“I would sooner eat that dough-splattered sponge in the sink,” I told him.

“But you told me you wanted to make baked potatoes this weekend,” he pointed out.  “You bought all the ingredients to make loaded baked potatoes for dinner.”

But that was then and this is now.  And now, we’re snowed-in.


I bought the ChickieNob and Wolvog sketch pads from the art store.  I got a new set of coloured pencils, markers, and blank puzzles.  I set up the ChickieNob in the kitchen with me as I attempted to make scones despite not having some key ingredients such as heavy cream.

She was delighted with the idea of all her pictures remaining in one place.  She started out with her usual princesses and ballet dancers and then branched out into new territory.  She drew a Spectro-man from Disney’s Spectromagic parade, the mask inexplicably glowing red (“a reflection,” she answered mysteriously.  Of what?  A sea of blood?  A wall of flames?).

She drew a rather dour Luke Skywalker towering over the ChickieNob and her brother.

And she drew a naked Yoda.

“Why do you suppose he’s naked?” the ChickieNob asked me.

“I don’t know.  You drew him.  Why did you draw him naked?” I asked back.

“He just crawled out of the swamp this way.  I think it’s so interesting that he doesn’t have any clothes on.  I just like looking at him like this.”

And so the family stared at the naked Yoda and the snow continued to come down.


Scones made without heavy cream, it turns out, don’t really taste like scones at all.


I’m not sure what draw the snow has over rationality.  On any normal Friday afternoon, I’d be home regardless.  I’d be making the challah and reading a book with the twins and coming up with plans to convince Josh that we really need a guinea pig and enlisting the twins in said plan.  On a normal Friday in the winter, it would be clear outside, but we wouldn’t go anywhere.

And yet the snow on the ground outside threw my routine into chaos.  Make dinner?  How the hell was I supposed to make dinner with snow outside?  What did you say–make dinner with the ingredients in the refrigerator and pantry?  For the love of G-d, who do you think I am?  Wonder Woman?  Do you really think I have the mental capacity to release my mind from thinking about the snow in order to consider how many eggs go into making a pot of matzo ball soup?

But there’s also something about snow that brings out the pioneering spirit, the chalutzim that lays dormant inside of us, just waiting to be challenged by the idea of making veggie stock sans celery.  I pulled together this and that, a carrot and onion and the parsley I had the forethought to purchase even though I never expected to want matzo ball soup during this storm.

And in the end, we had a snow feast.  Which is something that can only happen when you have a sea of time and nowhere to go.


For someone who has lived through quite a few huge storms, the latest of which was under two months ago, I am uncharacteristically nervous about this one and I don’t know why.  We barely have accumulation right now; the majority of the storm will fall overnight.  And maybe that’s it–the storm in the dark, the waking hours with the world outside changed.

I was gleeful when I first heard about the storm, excited as I stocked up on supplies and books.  But by this morning, a knot had formed in the pit of my stomach and I’m going through the evening feeling edgy.  The storm has already begun so it isn’t the anticipation of it anymore.  It’s just the unknowns that lurk in the dark.

Another dispatch tomorrow.


1 Sarah { 02.05.10 at 9:33 pm }

That soup looks fantastic!
Our grocery store shelves were completely stripped today, so we ended up with bell pepper, asparagus, mushrooms and a bag of lettuce. What in the world can you make with that?
Luckily, we keep a pretty solid stock of cheese, so I’ll think we’ll be okay. Oh, and we’ve got plenty of chickpeas. Yep, we’re all set.

2 Vee { 02.05.10 at 9:37 pm }

I think I would be scared of the storm in the dark also, but excited none the less. That soup looks yummy and making me hungry…oh it must be lunch time.

3 Vee { 02.05.10 at 9:38 pm }

Oh and the drawings….I LOVE the drawings!

4 Lollipopgoldstein { 02.05.10 at 9:39 pm }

We are watching I Heart Huckabees and this is not helping my anxiety situation. Though it’s better than Josh’s first choice–There Will be Blood.

5 a { 02.05.10 at 9:43 pm }

Maybe the knot is disappointment – because being snowbound is really just a hassle instead of being an adventure. What if you need a candy bar? Or celery (although for me, it’s not likely)?

They’ve been predicting 2-4″ here for the last 24 hours. We have about 1/4″ after 24 hours of precipitation. Oh well, at least it’s not all ice yet!

6 Rebecca { 02.05.10 at 10:11 pm }

Loved the naked yoda…freaking hilarious! Hope you guys enjoy the snowstorm & aren’t stuck inside for too long:)

7 Michelle { 02.05.10 at 10:18 pm }

Thanks for sharing the drawings. I’m loving Yoda.
I love this sentence, “Our house is full of ingredients and art supplies and cleaning supplies yet my brain can only focus on what is not here. And whatever is not here is what my heart fills with a longing to have. ”
This could be a euphemism for how I’m feeling. I have so much to be thankful and happy for yet, I only long for what I don’t have.

8 Heather { 02.05.10 at 10:39 pm }

Dang I miss snow.

Oh, and I love naked Yoda. I think he should have been naked in the movie. Then, it would have been MUCH more interesting.

We, on the other hand, have enough rain to float the ark. Come on down! 🙂

9 caitsmom { 02.05.10 at 10:59 pm }

Ah, naked Yoda. Nice. and well, nice.

10 Kristin { 02.05.10 at 11:29 pm }

The soup looks amazing and I totally love ChickieNob’s drawings. I love that she is pondering the reasons behind her own drawing.

11 Emmy { 02.05.10 at 11:32 pm }

I love having celery seed in my spice cabinet for just such occasions when I NEED celery and don’t have it for flavor. The soup loos so yummy!

We’re getting dumped on again on the west coast, so you’ll likely have another storm on your hands in a few days. Good luck!

12 Battynurse { 02.06.10 at 12:18 am }

I hope you have a fun weekend.
Funny about the celery. I’m not a big fan of celery. I like it in soup but can’t stand it raw. So last weekend I decided to make soup. And that I needed celery for it (usually I’m pretty happy to just use celery salt but I’m trying to skip the salt as much as possible) so I went to get some celery. It drove me nuts to buy a great big bunch of celery knowing I would use one stalk and the rest would go to waste. I wish I could have shared my celery with you.

13 Lavender Luz { 02.06.10 at 12:45 am }

Hmmmm…..I know how keen your intuition is. So now I am a little on edge.

It really resonated for me, the focusing on what you DON’T have. On the longing.

And the drawing of Yoda is really amazing. Luke, too.

14 S.I.F. { 02.06.10 at 3:45 am }

That’s the best Yoda drawing I have ever seen!

15 Twangy { 02.06.10 at 7:03 am }

Brilliant drawings! I am inspired.

16 Shelli { 02.06.10 at 7:34 am }

It’s 7am here, and so far I think we have 16 inches? They are now estimating 30 inches for my neighborhood in extreme S Jersey. gah. I just don’t want to lose power.

Scones, you are brave to even attempt them. I am making homemade rice pudding today with a custard top. My boys favorite.

17 Jamie { 02.06.10 at 7:41 am }

I am really impressed with the Yoda drawing! He doesn’t look near as bad naked as I thought he would.

Yes – there is something about a hard snow that makes you feel trapped and focused on all the things you don’t have. When the snowstorm hit here last week, instead of enjoying the mandatory mini-vacation (usually I would enjoy nothing more than an excuse to not get dressed and leave the house) I felt antsy all weekend.

18 Bionic Baby Mama { 02.06.10 at 7:50 am }

I love naked yoda. More than that, I love the sense that drawings come on their own, rather than being summoned.

Meanwhile, you’ve inspired me to [beg Sugar to] make scones this morning 😉 . Her recipe doesn’t need cream; I’ll post it on our blog.

19 tash { 02.06.10 at 7:52 am }

We’re up, we’re facing at least 12″ and they say we’re due for another 12″ before this lets up this afternoon. I don’t really go crazy with the stocking, I don’t know why. Just fun things for breakfast. Neighbors are already planning “clean the pantry” potlucks. Are you claustrophobic? Sometimes when I open the door and realize there’s a wall of snow there, it can get a bit daunting. But then the dogs run out and play in it and somehow it seems less scary.

Hang tough! Will check in to see how y’all are faring later!

20 Bionic Baby Mama { 02.06.10 at 8:22 am }

I’m so jealous of you all getting all that snow! I wanna go sledding, dang it!

Here’s Sugar’s recipe for scones that don’t take cream: http://bionicmamas.blogspot.com/2010/02/good-day-for-scones.html

21 Pam { 02.06.10 at 9:45 am }

I made scones the other day with sour cream that were excellent. I like them with buttermilk but I never have that in the house. Try this recipe. I’ll be making them again this week.


Oh, and I’m envious of your snow. We haven’t had more than a centimetre or two this whole winter which is very uncharacteristic for us.

22 chickenpig { 02.06.10 at 11:42 am }

You have no neighbors which you could borrow celery off of? The best thing about my neighborhood is that everyone on our little dead end st loves to cook, and almost everyone can be counted on for a stick of non salted butter or a cup of good cooking sherry in a pinch…or celery.

When I had my twins I went into the hospital on a warm day in November, it was 60 degrees and raining. When we all came out, it was 30 degrees and snowing like crazy. I was in a state of shock. Not only did I suddenly have two screaming children, but the seasons had changed to boot. Since then overnight snow storms make me feel a little discombobulated.

23 Katie { 02.06.10 at 1:28 pm }

Proper English scones have no cream in them. I imagine this is a misconception from the fact that you can have a cream tea with scones – neither the tea (YUK) nor the scones have cream in them – the cream is added to the scone topping, typically jam (classically strawberry) and possibly also butter (though of course you hardly need it if you have cream).

If you are from the SW of England it is clotted cream (Google it) and if from elsewhere whipped cream.

24 Lynn { 02.06.10 at 5:39 pm }

The naked Yoda has made my day 😀 Hope you’re not going too stir crazy in all that snow! Wish some of it would make its way down here. All we got was a bunch of rain. My feet get soggy everytime I try to walk out to the car!

25 Bea { 02.06.10 at 9:00 pm }

Ok. There appears to be some confusion over the meaning of scones. My scones never have cream in them, however, I do tend to cry a bit if I can’t have cream on them, and I’m not sure which applies to you. However. I have discovered a trick: date scones. Date scones don’t need cream on them, or jam, for that matter. Just butter them warm. So no need to fear for the cream, as long as you have flour, milk, butter, an egg, some baking powder, and dates.

You don’t have dates, do you? I haven’t helped.


26 loribeth { 02.06.10 at 9:19 pm }

You probably don’t want to hear this, but it was bright & sunny here today & we actually have very little snow on the ground. Kind of weird to be folding laundry in the living room with the sun streaming in & watching the weather reports from Washington on CNN — & thinking of you four.

I don’t mind winter storms so much, so long as (a) I (or my loved ones) don’t have to be out in it, driving somewhere or trying to get to work (or home from work), etc., & (b) the power doesn’t go out.

Stay warm & cozy!

27 Terry { 02.07.10 at 3:56 pm }

I long for snowmageddon or snowpocalypse. Sigh.
Now I love Yoda even more ! Thank yu for sharing your naked Yoda.

28 mybumpyjourney { 02.08.10 at 12:10 am }

I lived in AL when the “Blizzard of 93” hit, and itwas NO FUN. 13 inches ovenight- NO FUN. I hope you get dug out soon, and you get settled into being snowed in. People laugh at southerners when we rush out to get milk and bread at the first word of snow…but that is b/c those of us that were snowed in in 93 remember it! We remember that the road crews are idiot and put the sand down BEFORE the snow/ice forms. There is one snow plow for about 4 counties, and one salt truck…which is basically an f-10 pick-up. 🙂 it snows, or ices over…we are stuck indoors for DAYS! We were of power for 2 weeks from all the pine trees falling.ugh.
Good luck Mel!!!

29 Geochick { 02.08.10 at 10:19 am }

Oooh, I wish we were having a blizzard here. 🙂 Way to pull together “random” ingredients from your shopping frenzy. ;-p

30 jill { 02.08.10 at 1:31 pm }

Aww I love ChickieNob’s drawings and your discussions about them!

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