How to Butter Your Toast

When the clock strikes 3:00 p.m., that means it's time for afternoon tea. It's not something we plan–it just happened that way and evolved into a ritual. The tea concoction is made from dried lemon balm leaves, fresh ginger, and tons of mint leaves from the garden. We let it steep in a tall green Stanley thermos by the coffee machine, which keeps the tea hot for hours. 

It's nice to have a little something with your tea, like a cookie. I've been into raisin toast lately because it's sweet but not sugary. And, of course, it's extra nice smeared with softened salty butter. If I remember, I take the butter out in the morning so that it softens by "tea time". If I don't, then I scrape thin curls off the butter with the edge of my knife and flick them onto the hot slices of toast, straight outta the toaster. Melts just fine.

Monte Cristo Æbleskiver

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Æbleskiver (pronounced ebb-BLUH-skewer) are a Danish-style pancake that's shaped like a donut hole. They've become a breakfast favorite here at the ranch. We just use regular pancake batter and pour it into a cast iron æbleskiver pan, which has seven hemispherical pockets. Butter it well! You pour the batter in halfway, add whatever filling you like, then, when it starts to bubble, you use a skewer to turn them (traditionally, one would use a knitting needle). Lately, we've been doing a riff on the Monte Cristo sandwich: bits of chopped ham, a blob of Brie, and a dab of strawberry jam. These golden puffs are then dusted with powdered sugar. For something so quick and easy, they sure do make a morning feel special!

Sweater Girl Forever

I love a luxurious cashmere sweater. I found a perfectly cozy one to wear around the ranch–snatched from my boyfriend's closet. The term "boyfriend sweater" takes on a whole new meaning when said boyfriend is six-foot-six. It's a supremely masculine piece: a thickly ribbed charcoal-colored sweater with a mock turtleneck. He says it might be by Gucci, but he's not sure because he cut off the tag long ago. On me, it's a "boyfriend sweater tunic". 

This could quite possibly be my new favorite piece of clothing. I've gotten into the everyday routine of pulling it over a long-sleeved tee with my black leggings. Temperatures are chilly here when we wake up but it gets pretty warm around noon, which is usually when I peel it off. The sleeves are far too long, though. I have to roll them up, which makes them look like giant cuffs. Because the weight of the knit is so heavy, I don't think it looks very stylish that way but I do it anyhow.

"I looooove this sweater," I purred, as I curled up in the chair next to him this morning with a mug of hot tea.

"Does this mean that it's officially not mine anymore?" he asked, glancing over.

I do believe the answer to that question is yes.





Here Comes King Kong

I like snuggling as much as the next person, but, when it comes to the actual sleeping portion of the night, I much prefer having my own space. My boyfriend, though, always manages to find me somewhere on the other side of the bed in his sleep. His arm slides across the bed, slinks under my body, hooks around and drags me snugly into his chest. I feel like I'm in the grips of King Kong, therefore, I've named this move, "The King Kong" and refer to it as him "King Kong-ing" me. This usually occurs around four or five o'clock in the morning, and, thanks to an app called Sleep Cycle, I now have proof of it!