Shortbread and Chai.

Never let anyone tell you that making chai tea from scratch is less expensive than buying tea bags of chai at the store. That person is lying to you. And probably smiling while they are lying to you. It is not less expensive. In fact, it is much more expensive, but the taste is outstanding and you can add your own mix of spices, which only includes those you enjoy. This is the trade-off in the land of chai.

Do you remember in middle school when you watched those economics movies that talked about trade-offs, supply and demand, and other economic concepts that seemed so cut and dry. They seemed too easy to be true, and for the most part, they were. Maybe they were true, just not simple. For each action there are multiple trade-offs. It isn’t like you choose the yo-yo or the teddy bear. You are also choosing the American factory worker or the Malaysian factory worker, you are choosing the plastic verses the fabric, you are choosing minimal packaging or no package or excessive packaging, and you are choosing a sedentary activity (cuddling the bear) or a more active toy (if moving your arm can be non-sedentary). Those fucking films made it seem like the choice was simple. One toy or the other toy. They lied, too, like the articles online that said homemade chai is cheaper.

I guess I am not so concerned with the cost of the chai as I make myself out to be. I really am not concerned with the price at all, because the tea is part of my Christmas gift to my family. (I am hoping none of them read this before Friday. Sorry, Abs; though you already knew anyway.) I also made some other delectable snacks that will join the chai in the gift bags. However, I sort of cheated on part of the presents because I reused instead of hand-making; I recycled instead of creating my own.

I cheated completely on William and Shannon’s gifts. I tried in vain to make hot cocoa mix from scratch, and it kept tasting like dried milk, cocoa, sugar, and salt. So, I went and bought a big container of cocoa mix and marshmellows and simply divided it into bags for their gifts. I am sure they will appreciate my generosity without even knowing it. They should; I am making special cookies for them, too.

*

Today has been a weird day because I got up so early to take Elizabeth to Indianapolis to catch her train. The Amtrak station is a little sketchy. There is no checking in like there is at the airport. You just sit on the bench and wait until someone comes walking through and says, “All aboard!” For real, the woman came out of the back room and yelled, “All aboard,” as she walked toward the elevator. Then everyone just walked up the stairs or took the elevator to the upper level of Union Station where the train sat outside. The way it is set up is weird because the trains sort of go next to the train station now instead of going through it like they used to. I mean, seriously, “All aboard!” I loved it. I hope Elizabeth makes it to Dallas unscathed, and I can’t wait until this summer when we take the Greyhound to see the Chavez/Lewises.

When I got home from taking her, it was around 6:30 AM. I walked the dogs, took care of the cats, and then fell asleep on the couch at around 10:30. I hadn’t fallen asleep last night until 11:30 or midnight, so I was exhausted. When I woke up, it was 1:30 PM and  most of the day was shot. I took care of the other critters I am watching, and then came home and worked on Christmas presents.

*

My brother and I decided to create a fun event: instead of paying to go to Indy to run on New Year’s Day, we are holding our own run around Minnetrista. I think it will be fun. Basically, the idea is that we are just running for fun. You can run around the loop as many times as you want n two hours, and then we will all have some food and hot cocoa together. I am making cheap shirts for me, Bec, Adam, and William. Everyone else will be jealous. I think it would be fun if this turned into an annual event, but I won’t hold my breath.

*

I am thankful that Georgie’s surgery went well.

Exercise: walked the dogs three miles

Food: chili, milk, toast, tea, shortbread

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