There are two varieties of dinners at our house: Real Dinner when Rob is here, and Nursery Dinner when Rob is on the road. When Rob is here, we always have a proper, balanced (and substantial) meal that includes some sort of meat, or at the very least, a great deal of cheese, plus a vegetable or two and at least one starch. When Rob is not here, we eat things like grilled cheese and cream of tomato soup, “The Sam,” or pasta with butter and cheese.
I have always loved descriptions of “nursery dinners” in a certain kind of British childrens’ book, and I love the idea of curling up in front of the nursery fire with Nanny to have a meal of toast soldiers and coddled eggs on a tray, with a pot of tea or chocolate as an accompaniment. We have no fireplace and no nanny, but we are capable of scaling down to cozy when we don’t require a full-on meat and potatoes affair.
On this particular night, Rob is in Marion, Ohio (where he reports that he ate a hamburger), and Sam and I are in a relaxing valley between the busyness of football practice evenings. There are wild thunderstorms passing through, and it feels very good to be eating bowls of “The Sam” in the living room, watching a movie and throwing an occasional carrot chunk to the dogs while the rain pounds the windows and lightening briefly turns night into day.
No fireplace, no nanny, but still very a very cozy nursery dinner.