Tonight I put my pj pants on and a big navy blue sweatshirt. I ate dinner, and then went into the kitchen. I filled the red kettle and set it onto the stove. Turned the dial to medium high and walked away. A few minutes later the sound of the whistle started, quiet at first and then louder, signaling that it was time. I pulled the dark blue teapot off the shelf, opened the bag of decaf vanilla loose tea from a little shop here in Chapel Hill, and dropped a spoonful of it into the metal mesh basket inside. The steaming water came next, causing the tea to release its color and flavor. I took out a favorite mug from college, added some sugar and milk to the bottom of it, and when it was time, removed the basket of wet tea leaves. The hot tea poured out into the mug, swirling up the milk and melting the sugar. Yum.
Some may say this is a lot of work, but I like the ritual. I like the simultaneous lack of thinking that goes on as I hum through the steps, as well as the ability to let my mind wander. I also love the result. It's part of self love, after all.