Cold Comfort

I couldn’t remember being so cold.  We were definitely having a cold snap and I became reluctant to go outside unless I had to.  I knew that I had to plan next week’s card party since it was my turn to hostess.  If this cold continued, I was going to have to choose a furry theme so everyone could wear their fur jackets or stoles.  I had waited for years to get my fur coat and never minded having another chance to wear it.  I usually wear it to church or if we go to a fancier restaurant during the winter.  Steve seems especially proud that he is able to have a wife with a fur and makes a bit of a deal helping me take it off at the coat check when we arrive and gently placing it over my shoulders on the way out. He makes it look like he always helps me on and off with my coat but that boat sailed a long time ago.  Even though he has to tip the check girl, he gets to feel semi-rich for a few minutes.  Most of the women in my group have a fur now and Mags has a beautiful full length black mink.  She wears it casually and it looks great with her shiny hair.  Even though she lives right across the street, she will make quite an entrance in that coat.

The furry theme was intriguing but it didn’t really match any food theme.  I didn’t want to choose the traditional opposite theme, like a beach party, and I was stumped.  I started to think about what I like to eat when I’m cold.  Mid-winter meals are always a heartier than summer and some recipes can simmer longer without losing their integrity.  I knew that all of my usual choices would be comforting but not very special. I casually thumbed through my new standby French cookbook and saw a delicious French Onion Soup recipe staring back.  That would be a great idea.  I had also remembered seeing a fancy ham and grilled cheese sandwich and searched for that one to add to the mix.  Tres great!  The choices were not the everyday choices we would make for our families and I enjoy demonstrating how much I care for my girls by making them something special.  Of course, I was hoping that Chloe would enjoy them too.

For tonight, my old standby Chicken Pot Pie would serve admirably.  Special, maybe not, but so good that when it comes out of the oven all bubbly and warm, Steve will know that I take my family’s comfort seriously.  As Steve made our cocktails before dinner, I thought more about the drink issue for the card party.  A warm drink to sip while we play would keep everyone’s spirits up.  I remembered one time having some warmed Cognac at the end of a celebratory dinner at the club.  I think that serving warmed Cognac with coffee would be the best of both worlds and keep us from needing naps after the party.  I was suddenly looking forward to finding the right sweater set to wear to the card party!

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