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ushanka – a Russian fur cap with ear flaps that can be tied up to the crown of the cap, or tied at the chin to protect the ears, jaw and lower chin from the cold.
We’re talking California cold. The temperatures dropped to maybe 50˚ (during evening hours) and it’s kind of chilly in the house. I swear, I’m not even kidding you, I love it. It was a long and hot summer, even for us, those lucky bustards of South California. Don’t throw things at me envious Missourians and indignant Californians, for I have sinned much worse in my short life than utter these words: screw all-year-round summer weather. I’m so bored with the toned arm-bearing top-tanks and tanned thigh-revealing shorts. I’ve missed having some cloths on.
Luckily, my prayers have been answered, and I’ve noticed a shift in the weather pattern. We still get to enjoy sunny and warm days, but those now get framed by chilly mornings and cold evenings. All of a sudden we’ve realized the furnace is broken (Mike, I hope you’re reading this!), and that our windows really do close. Also, the comforter’s life has been filled with meaning again. It’s confidence grew overnight.
Hell, I got to wear socks today! I also restored my favorite tea mug that was on a sabbatical for all these months. I’ve just brewed myself a perfectly hot cup of organic twig tea…Oh. Nothing’s more soothing and comforting than a potion of soaked up branches and bushes.
Today I’m celebrating winter. And I don’t give a flying monkey what you say about autumn. Autumn-shmotumn. In California it’s not going to get any better than what I’ve got right now. At least I get to wear fuzzy socks and a furry mitt with the bikini that goes swimmingly with my new ushanka. I’m going all the way! Now, if you’ll excuse me, I will sit in front of my imaginary fireplace, hold a cup of intensely fragrant and rich hot chocolate (as real as it comes – see below), listen to the non-existent crackle of fire, and feel its heat on my rosy cheeks. In the state of utmost relaxation, high on serotonin, I won’t even reject the straight jacket Jason will surely dress me up in upon entering the site.
In order to fulfill the fantasy, I need to follow these steps (read carefully and take notes):
- take a small sauce pan and set over a medium heat
- pour about 3/4 cup of organic almond milk (unsweetened) into the pan
- let the milk heat, but not boil
- pick The Most Favorite Cup In The World and position it on a kitchen counter
- open a sachet of organic FIRESIDE ALMOND HOT CHOCOLATE MIX bought from Whole Foods last Christmas
- measure 2 tbsp of the powder and add to The Most Favorite Cup In The World
- add 1/4 tsp of instant coffee (for that intense chocolate flavor, trust me)
- take the milk off the heat and pour over the hot chocolate powder in the cup
- mix all together
- put on a bikini, fuzzy socks, and ushanka
- sit in front of an imaginary fireplace
- hold the cup with the Hot Chocolate in both hands
- say Hi to the White Rabbit
- when I count to 3, you’ll open your eyes…
Oops, sorry. Was I daydreaming? Again?
Keep your fuzzy socks handy, everybody. It’s the ushanka season.