A steady drizzle of rain, starting last night and on into today, and the six inches of snow from two days ago is melting. Instead of shoveling, I'm out checking that my little drainage trenches keep the water flowing around the house instead of through my front door (we live at the mouth of a small canyon, on the downhill side of the street). So far, so good.
Outside, there are no birds to be seen around the feeders. However, a lone little sparrow hawk perches in a nearby tree, patiently waiting for his chance to get something to eat. For now, it's a standoff - they hide, he waits.
Dinner last night: a winter squash (the big one, that got a little too close to the wood stove while curing this fall - a patch on top sunk in and turned white, but the inside looked fine when I cut into it) from the bin in the bedroom, cut in half and into the oven for an hour. I had some raviolis ready to cook, a pint of tomato sauce ready to heat up, but wanted a little something more.
How about some eggplant? home-grown eggplant? in December, with snow outside on the ground? Ah, yes, with a bit of advance planning, entirely possible. Eggplants store quite well for a couple of months, if snugly wrapped in plastic, on a shelf in my kitchen pantry (the zucchini stored in the cellar are still in fine shape too - I love experimenting with my wintertime fresh food options). I unwrapped a couple of small eggplants harvested last October, just before the first killing freeze. Sliced, dipped in egg and crumbs, they joined the squash in the oven for the last 30 minutes baking time.