It is a beautiful day in Alabama. My son, Will, is home from college for a few days of fall break and he has just celebrated his 21st birthday this week. I browned a roast this morning and have it cooking in the crock pot (slow cooker for our Canadian friends) with some onions and a bit of salt and pepper. Layered onto that oh so good smell is the smell of chocolate as I have just pulled two pans of german chocolate cake, prepared by Bruce, from the oven to rest on the counter. With a slathering of chocolate and then german chocolate pecan icing, it will be a 'good thing' later in this beautiful day and we will celebrate twenty one good years as well.
It occurred to me as I gathered the ingredients for this weekends meals that it isn't just the final result on the table that brings us to the point of feeling 'at home.' My goal of course was to make the time feel special, particularly as we have learned in this season of life that the moments are just that, moments, and indeed fleeting ones at that. The people encountered along the way in the gathering process itself add to the whole experience of preparation. I commented to the check out gals that my son is coming home and thus the way must be prepared. Special foods are being purchased and prepared for it is 'special' time.
And so, there is the aroma. The oh so sweet smell of care and thoughtful preparations under way. The time 'set aside' so that care will be taken and the feasts will be ready, but the process produces a wonderful aroma, when all goes well. The smell permeating my home is delicious, even at this mid point and I have slipped upstairs to pen a few words while they are fresh.
The windows are open, a cat is sprawled out lazily in the upstairs window, as I type. We hear birds and we smell the aroma coming from downstairs. I hear the murmur of voices from the driveway as Bruce & Will explore the door of the Camry to figure out why the window will not lower, a particular inconvenience to a man traveling home for his visit and being unable to work the window at the McDonalds drive thru for late night coffee. And so, they work together to fix it. I am enjoying the view and the sights and sounds of the aroma of home.
There are times when we light the candle of fragrance such as apple pie with cinnamon and one would enter and scout about to 'find' the feast waiting, only to be disappointed by the flicker of a candle in a glass. The scent is there but the pay off is a bit short. It is what it is though and brings about a remembrance of a time of feasting. It is a substitute but then sometimes that is all the time we have made preparation for.
It is now time to close my writing for today and be about the business of home. Green beans and sweet potatoes and maybe a few other treats to round out tonights meal. The smell is delicious. A sweet sweet aroma. Home.