Ah a warm cup of tea…. Just the thought of a nice cup of orange pekoe steaming fresh out of the tea pot makes me feel comfortable.
I remember when I was growing up how mom would keep a few tea cups that matched a new set of dishes she’d purchased. The set had cute kittens on them, on all the pieces, and oh how Dad didn’t like it…but it made her happy. Anyway, she’d warm up water one cup at a time, dip a tea bag and then carefully set it aside for reuse again..and again…until it barely colored the water. Mom was from the Depression Era and WWII, so I can understand why she did so. She’d take a saltine and dunk it and have her tea and crackers each morning. Most mornings she’d do this, and again in the evenings before bed. How she slept with all that caffeine late who knows….
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to appreciate that warm cup of tea. Now I make literally gallons of this delectable delight, and enjoy a wide variety of flavors. Once the kids are off to school, I fill up my metal tea pot with fresh water, add in fully caffinated tea bags, then put in a flavorful addition–one morning it may be Darjeeling, another morning Vanilla Sugar Cookie (from a holiday collection), English Breakfast, etc. I tend to the dishes and a bit of hand washed laundry,and listen to KVCY radio out of Ft. Scott (Kansas) while this brews on my old gas stove.
As the days have gotten a bit cooler (today was a mild 50 or so, rather warm for the middle of December) it is nice to have that extra bit of warmth. I enjoy sitting down for a quick break with my cup of fresh brewed tea, sweetened with a little Splenda (or Equal or honey), and feeling warm with the cup in my hands. I can turn the furnace down a bit, enjoy a sip of simple goodness, and only spend pennies per pot. Frugalness at its best!
Evening comes and after all the supper leftovers are put away, dishes are at least halfway herded to the sink, the table is clear, kids are playing a board game, etc, I sit down with another cup and play along. I’ve been beaten quite well and forced into bankruptcy in Monopoly while enjoying sipping my tea. I’ve enjoyed a cup of herbal tea and been through the licorice pits and cupcake hills of Candy Land. I’ve brewed a second pot while sliding down the chutes and climbing ladders in Chutes and Ladders.
My favorite time for tea has to be this season. The tree is lit, my Mason Jar candles (Mason Jars with Epson salts and tea lights) and crystal bowl candled center piece are burning, and the children watching Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer on dvd on the computer. I remember watching this classic when I was young, and I like that the children enjoy it as well. As we are gathered around watching the dvd, I sit with a cup of herbal tea and watch right along with them.
I guess you can say that tea for me is a comfort thing. I can find comfort every time I have a cup. It’s a frugal luxury for this homemaker, and one that I hope you enjoy as well!