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Sometimes the world whooshes by in a blur. It’s Election Day, so we needed to get to the polls and vote. The carpet cleaners were here this morning and the house is upside down. I’m late with two work projects that need to be done before a yoga class tonight. And then there’s that mess from last week’s trip. Here’s what I do when I can’t make the world slow down: I make a cup of tea in a beautiful vintage pot given to me by the sweetest of friends. For five minutes, the world seems as though it can be arranged to perfection.

Today I’m drinking Blue Lady, also a gift. It makes me think of the first perfect tea service I drank from, arranged by our family friend Sue Philipak. It was blue and white with a little candle warmer underneath, served in the little breakfast nook of her Cape Cod house, an alternate home to me and my three brothers. Sue stopped by our house and had tea with my mother nearly every afternoon on her way home from teaching art. That was no doubt the highlight of Mom’s day (and also ours) because Sue was always sun and light, inside and out. After painting my mother’s portrait, Sue named it Blue Lady, just like my tea. So here I am with my Blue Lady tea, remembering the time I was sitting on Sue’s lap, looking through the Sears and Roebuck catalog when an earthquake struck and we all ran outside.

What do you do to make the world slow down?

Life is short. Wear the good stuff.