This September a major hurdle has come in my life – both of my boys are in school full time. Like most moms I have had days when this day couldn’t come soon enough and I have also dreaded this day like you can’t imagine. Someone once told me, “the days go by slow, but the years go by fast” and boy is that true. I remember tripping over countless squeaky toys while stressing out about whether or not my newborn infant was getting enough tummy time to have a strong neck and how will I ever get them to sleep through the night. Now, it is so much different. Will they be OK at recess? Will they have someone to play with? If they fall, who will kiss their scrape and hold them?
My babies are growing up and I have some sad days. Today was one of them, so I decided to make myself a special treat to warm my insides up. It is a Cinnamon Café au Lait with Spiced Whipped Cream. It was nothing close to having the arms of one of my boys wrapped around me, but for now, this will have to do – and it is pretty, darn good.
Cinnamon Café Au Lait with Spiced Whipped Cream
1 ½ cups low-fat milk
3 cinnamon sticks
5 whole cloves
4 cups strong coffee
2 T sugar + ½ T. Sugar
1 ½ t. pure vanilla extract + 1 t. pure vanilla extract
1/3 c. very cold heavy whipping cream
¼ tsp. grated nutmeg
Bring the milk, cinnamon sticks, and cloves to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the milk mixture to steep for 15 minutes. Strain the mixture, discarding the spices and bring it back to a simmer. Add the brewed coffee, 2 T. of the sugar and 1 ½ t. of the vanilla, and stir over medium-low heat until the sugar melts and the flavors are blended, about 5 minutes. It will look like this:
Pour the hot coffee into the heated mugs and add a dollop of the spiced whipped cream. Garnish with more nutmeg or cinnamon if desired.
Also, I had to add a picture of the angels I miss so much. They are the best…