Samantha Tennant: Winter Sun

It’s cold.

It’s dark.

It’s winter.

And then….

there’s this:

Wonderful, sweet, juicy, fruit in the dead of winter when we need it most.  Coincidence? I think not.
Citrus is a gift.  Truly.  It’s a mood lifting, body protecting, thirst quenching, aromatherapy session,  all wrapped up into one little, perfectly packaged, orb of joy.

My grandmother used to tell stories of receiving an orange in her Christmas stocking. It was a big deal.  So special, that she never forgot.

When I was in school, my best friend Carrie used to tease me.  An orange (or two) accompanied me at every lunch, field trip, choir competition…She would ask, “did you bring anything BESIDES an orange?”  I would just shrug, smile, peel it, and pass it around. I loved them.

Years later when I was pregnant with my first child, morning sickness was my 24 hour nemesis for 7 months. Enter the beloved clementine. It was the only thing I could keep down and I bought them by the boxful.  My mother joked that we should name my daughter after the little those little, orange, life savers.  Even the skins were medicinal. When a  wave of nausea would come, I would pinch a piece of saved clementine skin between my fingers and the smell would calm my stomach.

Nowadays, I keep a bowl of them on the counter. Piles of sweet, orange snacks that  are beautiful in their own right. My kids toss them in their lunches, and we share them after meals. The perfect dessert !

A grapefruit for breakfast, a dash of juice with olive oil on a winter salad, a tangerine snack, or just a slow simmer of saved rinds and a stick of cinnamon on the stove.  I am so grateful for this bright, winter gift.
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