When my mom came to visit over the holidays and try out a place to live in Austin, I lent her my coffeemaker to keep in her apartment.  Needless to say, it really only gets used when she visits, so it was an easy thing to do.  However, what we didn’t think about was that when she came to stay overnight with me at Christmas, there would be no way to make coffee at my house!

Normally, that would be a big problem, as my mom is a coffee drinker all the way, and takes it straight up – black, no sugar.  I’ve tried to get her to taste some tea with me, and she has occasionally, but she never really seemed to like it.  She frequently says, “My mother always gave me tea when I was sick”, and that association seemed to turn her off my favorite beverage.

However, this time, I made a pot of black tea mixed with spice tea, and asked her if she’d like a cup.  I took it over for her to smell, and apparently the aroma got to her, because she agreed to try some.  Of course, that made me pretty happy – but I wasn’t sure she’d want more.  A little while later, though, I noticed her cup was empty, and asked if I could refill it.  Lo and behold, she said yes!  Hiding my surprise, I quickly filled up her cup.

On subsequent days, we drank other kinds of tea – usually flavored black teas, including a yummy Madagascar Vanilla and a fruity Christmas blend.  I almost had to pinch myself every time my mom asked for more.

Shortly after the holidays, I hosted my book club for dinner.  We had a fabulous time, drinking wine, eating chili, and catching up with each other.  Then after dinner, one of my friends, who also likes tea, asked if I would make a pot.  She checked out my selection and chose the Christmas blend (Fauchon’s “Un Soir de Noel”, to be precise).  I made a big pot, even though only two of us were drinking it.  But then, as the apple pie got eaten, a few people said, “Oh, that smells good – can I have a cup?”

So the best gift I got over the holidays was a simple one – getting to share tea with my mom and my friends.  I don’t know that I could ask for anything more.