5:00: The kids spread the joyous news throughout the house that their school is also cancelled for tomorrow. The school district website has the tell-tale snowflake on the screen, next to the announcement.
5:10 pm: Time to start supper. Dumpling soup sounds good for a day like today.
5:20: Open aseptic carton of Swanson's chicken broth.
5:21: What's that smell? The chicken broth has a strong odor. But it's Swanson's. I spent good money on this because it doesn't have MSG. How could it be bad?
5:22: Do I use this chicken broth? Is it okay? It has to be. I spent good money on it. I ignore the smell and pour it into the pot. Proceed to cook.
5:30: Continue to notice unsettling smell but flat-out ignore it.
5:59: Open bottle of wine I went out of my way to buy yesterday, in the freezing rain. I just had to have some red wine on hand in case we got snowed in. Pour myself a glass. Ahhh.......
6:14: The soup is almost ready. I test the broth. Oh no. It has an off-taste. It's the broth, I just know it. Am I going to poison my family? Am I willing to take such a chance? I look at a full pot of soup I spent 45 minutes making. Should I play dumb and serve this? YES.
6:29: I serve up the soup. Lilah starts to eat it. Makes a face. She says it tastes funny. Oh dear. She goes to help herself to some Kix cereal instead. Roger thinks it tastes fine. I drink my wine nervously.
7:24: Will disaster strike? Will we be okay, or come down with crippling stomach cramps? Only time will tell. So far, so good.
7:26: Lilah is learning to play the song "Skating", the Vince Guaraldi instrumental from "Charlie Brown Christmas."
7:30: Since we are snowbound with nothing to do, we are going to watch one of the movies I checked out of the library, failed to return on time, was unable to renew because it has a hold on it, and was unable to return late because of the storm: The Odd Couple with Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau. Critics say it is pure magic. Comic brilliance. I have a good supply of salt and vinegar chips to snack on during the show. If we're not all keeling over from food poisoning.