Thanks to my couponing ways, I was able to snag six boxes of Iced Tea bags for a total of $0 this past week (and, quite frankly, I could go get more if I were really eager) - that's a total of 144 family-sized tea bags. And I hate tea. But when it's free, it's free. My initial plan had been to donate the boxes either to a tea-loving friend or even the local Rescue Mission. And then I remembered, my husband actually really enjoys a nice glass of sweet tea and, being that all the grocery-carriers in the area have stopped selling his preferred brand of prepared tea as of about a year ago, his tea taste-buds have only had the chance to dance when McAlister's hosts its annual Free Tea Day - which, in case you're unsure of the meaning of the word "annual," happens only once a year.
My man deserves better than that.
So I decided it was time his wife did a little work to get him what he loves. After finding the perfect Sweet Tea recipe on allrecipes.com (why, yes, I do use this website for everything, even something so seemingly simple as Iced Tea) and then debating on whether or not the recipe meant six regular-sized tea bags or six family-sized (which seemed a bit excessive for one man), I finally gave up and called my dear friend and former college roommate. And then called her back about five minutes later when I forgot the steps she told me, because apparently "Boil water, add sugar, soak tea" is a bit complicated for me (Thanks, Tiffany, for being available for my tea recipe needs!).
So far he is on his second batch since Saturday. I'm thinking he maybe feels loved.
Meanwhile, I, being the non-tea-drinker I am, had not taken in the aroma of freshly-brewed tea in nearly six years. I find it fascinating how one whiff of the leaves brewing in sugar-steeped water instantly carried me back to the International room of Nizhni Novgorod University, enjoying tea break between Russian lessons. My version of "enjoying" involved half a glass of sugar and half a glass of hot tea: mix thoroughly, maybe add more sugar. I was so grateful the day I received a package in the mail which included hot chocolate mix from a wonderful friend. Tea breaks got a lot more bearable that day.
Meanwhile, my Russian host-mother never could understand how I never drank a glass of liquid in her home (tap water not being the best choice) and, yet, that tiny kitchen, with a T.V. in the corner and me being squished on the cushioned bench along the opposite wall by my host family, cornered with no escape beyond crawling over the table (which I never did), enduring hours of a Brazilian soap opera dubbed in Russian and a horribly melo-dramatic (from what I gathered of the raised voices and endless tears) "romance"-based reality show called "Dom Dva" will always be the second onslaught of memories to assault me with that one tiny stream of tea-infused steam.
I suppose, then, this iced-tea making business does a little something for my man and a little something for me. That's what I call a win-win-win (although I'm not sure who the third winner is - the tea maybe?).