Thought I'd share some of the things that I am obsessively addicted to...I mean, things I love. With five kids under seven, no help, no breaks, and just a few unscathed brain cells left, these are the things that I do instead of becoming a raging alcoholic. :) My little serotonin boosters. I wish I could say they're the things that keep me from going crazy, but then I'd be exaggerating and implying that I still have my sanity. And you know I never exaggerate.
I love coffee. I love it more than most people. More than I should. More than anyone should. For some reason, coffee has always been a comfort for me. The smell, the color, the warmth, (or sometimes the coolness), and, I suppose the caffeine may have a little something to do with it. I grew up watching my dad drink coffee like water. Anytime of the day or night, he'd have a cup. He wasn't the type that would get into all of the Starbucks hoopla, though. He was a strong, black, straight up coffee drinker. So, it was natural for me, I suppose. It could be midnight, and I'd say to my dad, "Hey, I think I'll make some coffee, would you drink some?" And he'd say, "Sure!" like it was the most reasonable thing in the world. To this day, I love that in people. I am secretly annoyed by people who don't drink coffee (don't hate me!) and I have an inexplicable respect for those who do- and who do with reckless abandon. :) That's probably because their complicity makes me feel just a little less guilty.
In high school, the Indian ladies at the Dunkin' Donuts by my house became like aunts to me. (Farrah, I will never forget you.) :) They'd see me get out of my car in the parking lot and have my drink ready by the time I was at the counter. There were vicious rumors flying during my senior year of high school that I went to Dunkin' Donuts every day for coffee and a bagel during 3rd period, but my teachers didn't care because I brought them back coffee and donuts as well. Crazy rumors- that wasn't true at all! Actually, my teacher sent me, and it wasn't every day. More like every other day. Anyway, during college I would usually see Farrah twice a day. At 4:30 am on my way to work, then again at 11:15am on my way to class. Then, I would cheat on her and end up in Starbucks at about 9pm to fuel a study session with Blair. Then, the next day repeated much the same.
A few years ago, I even quit coffee. I don't regret it. I think it was good for my body. At the time, I wasn't comfortable with the fact that I was addicted to something, and needed it to function. So, after three days of tortuous, brain-thrashing headaches, I lived without it for months. I'm sure that was good for my body to "detox" and cleanse itself. But I never stopped missing it. I would then just make it/get it every once in a while in the afternoon- just for a treat. Then, after a few more months, the "every once in a while in the afternoon" became every day...in the afternoon :)
Now, you have to understand that it wasn't just for the caffeine. Having a cup of good strong coffee in my hand actually makes me feel like everything is going to be OK. At the end of a hard day (most days, now), I make a cup of coffee. When I wake up and wonder how I will get through the day, I make coffee. Currently, it is the mid-morning or mid-afternoon stretch that has me reaching for the press. When I get up, clean the kitchen, clean the house, feed the baby, change some diapers, get everyone dressed, do some chores, teach some math, do some reading...then look at the clock and it's only 10:45am.
(hear beans grinding)
Or when I repeat most of the above things plus a few others, combined with a few super fun surprises (like someone whose name starts with "N" throwing 25 books out of the upstairs window onto the roof and front yard), and I look at the clock and it's only 2:15pm.
(see water boiling and grinds dropping into press)
Or when it's 7:30 and I have done all of the above for 12 hours straight plus a few more fun surprises (like, oh, I don't know...dry erase marker all over the sheets, permanent marker on the laptop, or 2-4 kids screaming and wrestling with each other, or gigantic muddy footprints on a painstakingly clean floor, all while scream-whispering at everyone because the baby has finally fallen asleep and would probably like to do so for more than 10 minutes). You're so jealous of me, I know.
(hear the timer go off- four minutes, coffee is ready to be pressed. Pour into my favorite mug, add half and half, agave nectar, and cinnamon.)
One smell and one sip, and I can breathe a little deeper. Everything seems just a little bit less like eternal hellfire and brimstone and just a little more bearable. At this point in my life, I have evolved into a bona fide coffee snob. You won't catch me in Dunkin' Donuts. (Sorry Farrah, wherever you are) You won't even catch me in Starbucks most of time because we have taken a vow of poverty in exchange for a great house and a great farm. Nope- I make it at home, but we only use organic, and fair trade beans, bold, and preferably locally roasted. We buy whole beans and grind them fresh for each press. I like it strong-no I love it strong. And it loves me.