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Musings on a Stormy Weekend - Plus a Soup Recipe

No matter where you live, if you watch the news or read a newspaper, you have heard about California's awful storms this weekend. Living in the Pacific Northwest taught me to pay attention to weather - not doing so can be deadly - so I elected to work from home Friday and spent the weekend hibernating like a little bear.

You have also no doubt heard of our now infamous human/tiger slaying - no one was a winner, but for some odd reason, record numbers of people went to the San Francisco Zoo after the incident to see the tigers during the worst storm of the season. Of course, the big cats weren't out. As the zookeeper observed, animals are smarter than humans, they just stay inside when it's stormy...

Meanwhile, we kept getting reports of snowmobilers and hikers who were lost and needed to be rescued. OK, people, here's a health and safety tip - if the weather is bad - just stay home. Think about the search and rescue people, the cops and firefighters who will have to put their lives at risk if you get into trouble.

As for me, I just indulged in a good, old-fashioned winter depression. I can't help but think that brief "chill" periods are therapeutic. Our world is pretty crazy - maybe we need to indulge in serious down time to recharge our batteries mentally, physically and spiritually. If our kids see us doing this for ourselves, it gives them permission to do the same. I fulfilled my obligations to society and my family - I went food shopping, cooked, cleaned, did laundry, helped with home work - but the rest of the weekend I curled up in bed. I either stared out the window at the pelting rain, read a good book (The Subtle Knife, Phillip Pullman: Book II of the HDM Trilogy), or slept.

I did make a yummy, healthy soup from scratch. Now that Safeway sells Wolfgang Puck Chicken Stock in a box, making healthy soup couldn't be easier. Just saute some scallions in a pan with butter (I'm French - use oil if you're not). Add the soup stock and a bag of peeled mini-carrots. Cook until soft. Add some curry powder, ginger and salt to taste. Drain the carrots and puree them in a blender. Add the soup stock until the mix is pureed. Add some milk until it's the consistency you like. Reheat if necessary. Serve with a dollop of sour cream (I'm French - use yogurt if you're not). Lovely on a wintry day.

Anyway, my teenager spent the weekend doing her school project on the living room floor. Get your head back in the game and apply yourself, I advised her. This morning she woke up, proud of her work and what she had done. She gave me a kiss. "Thanks, Mom, for a nice, relaxing, stress free holiday."

Thank you aime nielsen for use of photo What else can you do during a storm but sleep...
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