Sunday, January 29, 2017

Dear Kids,
         The snow is still piled up, high. It hasn’t been warm enough to melt anything. There are gigantic drifts alongside the roads, where the snowplows have pushed it. The magpies are having a tough time finding enough roadkill to keep them happy, but Friday, coming down Highway 32 into Heber, I saw a couple of deer legs sticking out of a snowdrift, and the magpies were scrambling all over them. There should be more snowshoe rabbits for them pretty soon, too, because they’re turning up here and there, running across the road like idiots. Last year they dug up our lawn, but this year there’s too much snow. Dad has a friend over at the "coffee club" who measures water levels in the mountains, and he said right now there’s 24". That means there’s been about 24 feet of snow.
          What else? We visited Paul and Stefanie yesterday afternoon, for a belated birthday party for Paul, and the Riebens were there, too. We all admired the remarkable Josh. Paul makes him fly like an airplane (or "superbaby,") and he loves it. Earlier in the day, we’d had a sledding party at the cabin with the Barnecks, a young family in our ward with six kids. We took them up the hill in our Sienna, in two batches, since they don’t have snow tires. The first batch was all kids, and when I got them into the cabin, Allen was making waffles. The kids all declared that they were hungry, so Allen fed them. When their parents got there, they were all happily eating waffles. Thanks, Al! By the way, Allen has a Clavinova now, which he bought last week. And he’s started taking piano lessons from a teacher in Centerville!
           John discovered that Costco sells a really dark cocoa powder, twice as dark as Hersheys, and it only costs half as much. He brought me a bag last Sunday night, when we had a lot of people here. I mixed a batch of half cocoa, half brown sugar, and tested all the kids for "true chocolate lovers" by giving each of them a tiny taste. Only two passed--Aubrey and Abi. They both wanted more. Everybody else made a face. But then the three of us, the true chocolate lovers, each got more.  There’s no stopping the fun!
           Love, Mom