This tray sits on my dining room table. The teapot has seen almost daily use since I first ventured out on my own at eighteen. It has shared dorm rooms and basement suits with me. Today it's joined by a teacup and candle to make tea more accessible, more appealing. A little ritual -- a little tea from a teacup -- recharges and inspires me. Leftover Christmas chocolate and an hour of TV do not, but in those first ten minutes of Miss S's nap time, their appeal is overwhelming.
I don't usually make New Year's resolutions, but I reflect a bit. I gaze backward and forward, sharpening my focus on the things that matter most, and savoring the clean slate of a new year. It's been hard to get going again this January. Four cases of the flu swept through our family of three between December 23 and New Years, and I was the lucky double winner. The darkness has gotten to me bit too. I don't feel especially energized or creative, so I'm trying to cut myself some slack and focus on the little things that inspire me. A good book. A walk with Miss S. Fresh air. And, of course, tea.
Iris Murdoch writes that "one of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats." I think she might be onto something.