Find past “favorite things” in Andi’s Attic >>
In favorite things #1, Melinda and I reminisced about our favorite books and our favorite activities. Melinda’s favorite activity, dancing, can be enjoyed year round, but riding, roping, and racing Shasta (or Taffy back in the day) is best enjoyed during the spring, summer, and fall. Winters in the Valley and foothills can be sunny and perfect, but then one of our California sudden storms appears over the mountains and slams us with a downpour that–honestly–makes it hard to hear one another conversing. If I run from the house to the barn, I’m drenched. The creeks overflow their banks (which is how I nearly drowned back in 1880 when I was twelve). Sometimes the storm can last for three or four days. It would be all right if these rainstorms were drizzles or quickly passing downpours, but sometimes it’s nice to sit inside and enjoy a crackling fire.
So, what are our favorite winter activities? Can you guess before going on? Then keep reading to see if you were right.
3. Our Favorite Winter Activities
When the sun sets early during the winter months, our family likes to gather in the library in front of the blazing fire. I like to play checkers with Mitch or Chad, and I like to play chess with Justin. I can beat Mitch, and I can usually beat Chad, but now? Hmmm, Riley seems to have picked this game up awfully fast. He beat me the first time I taught him to play! That story during our courtship can be found in Stranger in the Glade: More Tales from Memory Creek Ranch (coming February 2022). It’s really tough to beat Justin at chess. But it can be done if I have enough patience. Which isn’t very often.
Melinda plays checkers too, but she doesn’t like it nearly as much as she likes stitching samplers and sewing quilt blocks. My sister must have five patchwork quilts folded and crammed into her hope chest. They are beautiful, but what does she possibly need with five quilts in California? I have one quilt. All right, I confess. I have half a quilt finished. I started it when I was ten years old. I think it will take me another ten years to complete it.
A couple years after Riley and I married and settled on our own Memory Creek ranch, I was extremely grateful to Melinda for having all of those quilts. My one and only, painstakingly sewed (which took years since it was my least-favorite activity) and actually quite beautiful was ripped to ribbons by some very bad men. (Stranger in the Glade, coming February 2022). In a generous show of her love, Melinda replaced my old quilt with a lovely new patchwork, one that she had never used. Yes, it was still in her hope chest. Of all her quilts, I loved this one best. Melinda is the best sister ever!