She was the one who introduced me to tea (and brownies and caramel cake and cream sauces) so many years ago. I didn't realize at the time how much seeing, or just hearing - when I was young and lazy, and still half-asleep in bed - her prepare a cup of tea first thing, early each morning, would influence me.
It was almost always bagged, and sometimes herbal; even though I stay away from Red Zinger and Twining's Earl Grey in my own kitchen today, it's still incredibly comforting to smell either of them. I enjoy bringing her my latest finds (loose, of course) from the city, and that we can truly appreciate each other's tastes when we talk about tea now. I wouldn't want to open a tea and dessert shop if it hadn't been for her sweet inspiration.
She showed me the indelible connection between food and love, and I'll never be able to thank her enough for that. Happy Mother's Day, Mom.
And if you haven't already, let this post remind you to wish your own the same. (She taught me all about guilt trips, too.)