My son Chuck and his wife Denise arrived late Thursday afternoon 04/25/19 for what would be a wonderful 4 day visit.
Denise, Sue, me, and Chuck.
The day before, a beautiful bouquet of flowers arrived. Sue cleared off a spot under one of the living room windows to display it, and the sun shining through onto them was so pretty.
They had caught a late morning flight out of Chicago's O'Hare International Airport into Boston Logan to miss all of the craziness of commuter traffic.
It was good timing as they missed all of the rush hour madness. Before heading over to the house, they stopped off and checked in at a local hotel. They had decided not to stay at the house as Chuck was concerned about his alergies to dog hair.
Sue and I had been sitting outside with Beau as the sun was out, and it was just a really beautiful day. But because it started to cool off, we retreated back into the house a little before they pulled into the driveway.
Of course, The Beau Dog, Protector of The Realm, Guardian of The Wood, and Associate Director of Guest Greeting, went totally berserk. It was so nice to meet Chuck for the first time, vying for hugs between holding back "The Dog", and trying to say hello over all of Beau's barking. Terrific. Just terrific.
But we had warned them that it would be several minutes of chaos until he had satisfied himself that aliens had not, in fact, come to take him away, and that he would then, like a chameleon, just sort of blend quietly back into the fabric of the ether around us. And he did. We got some nice pictures in the back yard before heading inside.
A little after 5:00 pm, I opened a bottle of Valpolicella for us to share. I had picked this wine for tonight as it was one of my brother Alan's favorites, and tonight would not only be a celebration of Chuck and I, but also of Alan's life.
With our glasses raised high, we toasted Alan's life as I played the video of his life that Mary Liz had created for the gathering after his funeral celebration at Pappas. It was a lovely evening getting to know each other, and just being together. But I soon realized that not only did I need to open another bottle of Valpolicella, but Sue and I had to get moving with dinner prep work.
While Sue prepared the sage butter sauce, and got several handfuls of Black Trumpet mushrooms ready that she had picked last Fall, I got the water going for the butternut squash ravioli that she'd be mixing with the sauce and mushrooms. She served it all up with some garlic bread I toasted on the stove.
Don't know why I look so grim because I was having just the best time. Maybe I was about to speak....
After dinner, we just sat in the living room, talking and experiencing the connection that Chuck and I had as the fire in the wood stove warmed the room. For desert, Sue had made a spectacular cherry crisp that she served with vanilla bean ice cream. It was just after midnight when we called it a night. Fortunately, Chuck and Denise only had about a 12 minute drive to a local hotel where they had decided to stay. Chuck was concerned about a possible allergy to dog hair and didn't want to be sneezing, and coughing during his visit.