With the Christmas season just beginning and everyone in such a hurry, maybe it’s time to think about slowing down just a little. A fragrant cup of tea shared with friends can be just the thing to refresh you and your guest.
I always say, “Tea isn’t just a drink, it’s an event.” But, it doesn’t have to be a formal event. Tea shared with friends can be as casual as you want. It could be just a quick stop together after work, or a planned event. The calming effects of sharing a cup of tea can last for hours or even days. The memories of an impromptu tea party could last a lifetime. Any time we share with friends over a cup of tea is time well spent.
One thing we always do during the holidays is plan a cookie day. I started it before my daughter was born. It began as a chance for my nephew, Dan and I to bake together. The crowning achievement of the day was the tremendous “Cookie for Santa”. Dan was always fond of the small silver jimmies and made beautiful silver dotted patterns in his huge cookie before baking. My brother, Charlie always grumbled a bit about how hard those cookies were. Each year our cookie day got more and more popular. We have had as many as 17 children participate. I always make excessive amounts of sugar cookie dough, provide the cookie cutters and sprinkles; then each person cuts out, decorates and bakes their own decorated cookies to keep plus the special cookie for Santa. We line the dining room table with layers of white paper, section the paper off with lines so each person’s cookies are separated ready to pack up or just eat. We sing carols, make cookies, have tea and hot cocoa, and make memories to last a lifetime. I wouldn’t miss it!
You could plan a baking day tea party with friends. Who knows? It could be such a tremendous success that it becomes a tradition, like our cookie day. Invite friends to share their family’s traditional cookie recipes by bringing the dough ready to bake. Each person can bake their own batch or have many hands to help with the forming and preparation. Once baked, the fun begins. Some sampling must occur. This is where the tea party comes in. Before your guests arrive have ready a few types of tea, teacups or mugs and nice tins or boxes for your guests to take home the baked cookies. As you sip your tea and test the cookies, share the recipes if you dare and make some memories for the future. At the end of a delightful afternoon, everyone goes home with a wonderful assortment of cookies to share with their family and it didn’t take them a week of baking.
Plan an event to make some lasting memories with those you love this year. Share a day of cookie and bread baking to give as gifts or use in a cookie exchange. Find a tree farm and chop down a Christmas tree with your family. Go caroling as a group. Whatever you decide, share time with those you love.
May your holidays be filled with pleasure; lively events with friends and family, and loving memories to last a lifetime.