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Christmas Morning Looking Back

Shortly after getting out of bed on Christmas morning 2012, I looked in the mirror. I saw my ‘little girl self’ looking back at me. I smiled, then laughed. That image made me think of a photo of me taken at Christmas when I was about two and a half years old.

Yes, at that moment, I was my ‘little girl self’ once again.

Me and my doll, Genevieve, having tea on Christmas morning. December 1959

Me and my doll, Genevieve, having tea on Christmas morning. December 1959

Mom must have taken this photo of me. At least Dad and I think so.

We were celebrating Christmas with my Grandma and Grandpa Booth – Mom’s parents, in Salem, Oregon. While I don’t exactly remember this special tea party, after all I was just barely two and half years old, I do remember the tea set; the ‘my-sized’ table and chairs set; my other doll and the cradle; my grandparent’s piano, even the photo of the snow bound mountain hut and the Christmas card tree on the piano; and the special ornaments on the Christmas tree.

I am thankful to have this wonderful Christmas memory. Glad that my Mom saved this image for me.
This Christmas, looking back to that Christmas moment is priceless.
Another way I can still share Christmas with Mom.

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Another Pancake Experiment

Well, I had another recipe floating ’round in my head… I am nearly sure MOM put it there. She’s like that.

This time, a pancake with some chai tea in it…. I could almost smell the ingredients. All those wonderful spices.

But what kind of pancake base?

This time I tried a creamier, nearly custard type of batter. (Mom always LOVED a good custard.) I am not sure I hit the mark, but the pancakes were good. And I am sure that any further ‘testing’ will be appreciated by my husband. 😉

To my basic pancake recipe, I added another whole egg, 1 tablespoon of vanilla and 3 tablespoons of sugar. Hindsight tells me I should have added some nutmeg… but I can do that next time. This time I was more concerned with the chai tea and how I was going to incorporate that into the batter.

MEANWHILE….
I wanted some berries for a topper for our pancakes. I grabbed the Marionberries from the freezer, put about 4 cups in a saucepan, 1/4 cup of sugar and a couple shakes of cinnamon. I heated them up real slow, while my other ingredients were coming together. When the berries were nearly finished heating I added 1 tablespoon of “Blackberry Cordial” that we purchased from “Stein Distillery” while on a mini-vacation in Joseph, Oregon

While the Marionberries were slowly heating up, I could get to work on other ingredients. First off, I toasted some almonds. One layer on a sheet of parchment, in a 375-degree oven for 13 minutes. After the almonds cooled, I put about a half cup in my Cuisinart food processor along with 2 heaping tablespoons of “5 Valley Chai” tea produced by “Mountain Tea Trading” that I bought from “Arrowhead Chocolates” while on our trip to Joseph. I ground the two ingredients to the course-side of a fine grind.

I used 3 tablespoons of the almond-chai tea grind in the batter of the pancakes. Cooked the pancakes, then assembled them. Pancake, Marionberries, Greek-style yogurt, a sprinkle of the almond-chai tea grind. Then my husband and I ate a creative breakfast at home.

Looking forward to refining this recipe and experimenting with yet another.

Mom would be pleased. 🙂

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Speaking of Chocolate and Orange….

Chocolate Orange Tea BrewingOn January 26 I also ordered some of my favorite tea.

Chocolate Orange Truffle tea from Mighty Leaf Tea.

Along with some other flavors, my special interest arrived just a few days later. Ahhhhhh…. Bliss Brewing.

This past week, I took some of this wonderful tea to work with me to share with some friends. It is now one of their favorites too. A smooth, rich flavor brightens and warms the day and mood. A lovely thing to have at work, or anywhere for that matter. I imagine Mom enjoying this tea.

Chocolate Orange Truffle tea is a delightful way to start off the day and a treat, pick me up, later in the day. Also, it makes a wonderful dessert tea. I’ve also thought about taking some of this blissful blend, placing it in a grinder or a food processor to break it up and then use it in something I am cooking or sprinkling some on a frosted treat. Sounds interesting to me.