Christmas Morning Tea

The sun is rising on this beautiful Christmas morning. A ring of newborn pink kisses the horizon as the sky starts to glow. A few rays of sun light up the hills as a curl of smoke rises from the neighbor’s chimney. As the world wakes up outside, there is such a peaceful quiet as I sit here before the fire and enjoy the first cup of the day, a spicy black tea called, appropriate to the moment, Hearthside Chai.

A black tea blended with cinnamon, ginger and cardamom seed, as a traditional chai has but then there are some interesting additions – licorice and cacao.

A warm spicy aroma greets me as I gently lift the lid of my glass teapot after a 4 minute steep in boiling point (212 degrees F) water. Where the steeping guidelines call for 1 teaspoon per cup, I find that too strongly spicy for my taste so I use 1/2 that amount of leaves.

The sweet licorice flavors the cup as the other spices blend together to create a rich delight to the senses. Depending upon what spice predominates as you spoon your leaves into pot or cup, the flavor can vary from warm cinnamon to spicy ginger to exotic cardamon.

This tea is very warming, both to body and spirit. A perfect tea to start this festive day.

Today, my daughter and I will be flying to Michigan to spend holiday time with my family so there won’t be any Saturday morning tea this week. I look forward to joining you next Saturday so we may share a cup to toast the New Year.

Until then, dear friends…

Peace and joy to all on this merry Christmas day!

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold,

everything is softer and more beautiful.

~Norman Vincent Peale

Saturday Morning Tea

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It has been snowing on and off all week. Mostly, delicately falling flakes that don’t stick to the roads but lightly frost the snow already on the ground. It’s perfect for this time of year as we celebrate the season of Light, birth of the Sun/Son. At 1:08am this morning, Winter Solstice marks the shortest day of the year here in the Northern hemisphere and starts our winter season. As I gaze out my window upon a sea of sugar dusted houses and trees, I am enjoying a cup of Melange Noel in honor of the season.

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Black tea blended with spices, dried fruit and nuts, it warms me all the way down to my toes. The liquor is a rich reddish brown color and the flavor is fairly full-bodied with notes of cinnamon and orange. I am drinking from my traditional Christmas cup, purchased years ago at Bronner’s in Frankenmuth, Michigan. So, as I sip, I am filled with wonderful memories of Christmases past spent with family in Michigan.

Joy, love, hugs, comfort

Christmas time in Michigan

going home again