Okay maybe this is a bit of a lie – the hot chocolate is really only the thread that holds all of this post together.  The rich warm treat definitely bears a whole different world of meaning for me, at the centre of which is my sister.  Are you getting the impression yet that she’s the centre of my everything right now?

It’s her birthday today.  March 15th – exactly one year and two wWeTwoeeks after mine.  She used to go on about how for a whole two weeks I got to be TWO years older than her, but as soon as March 15th arrived she’d be back on my heels.  I always felt a great deal of disbelief that I’d walk through my life and my baby sister would be stepping those same stones a mere year later.  Like I’d graduate from one school and enter a new one, only to watch her face the same feats so close behind me… but in her own characteristic way.  It’s hitting me now more than ever that so many of the sibling moments I’ve been looking forward to will never come.  But I’m also realizing that we’ve had so many that no other pair could rival.

Like the crazy times when she mastered the steam wand of our very first barista machine and tried to teach me the knack…  and later it was I who delighted in making her the perfect mug of hot chocolate, just the way I knew she liked it.  When we went out on walks or errands, we could always trust the nearest Starbucks to refill our thermal cups when only the last cocoa dregs remained.  She was such a cheeky monkey – whenever I took her for blood tests, she’d remind me with big puppy-dog eyes that the procedure only worked when her hands were warm… and really the best way to make that happen was to go for a tall-in-a-grande 2 pump cinnamon dolce, 1 pump mocha, 130 degree extra whip hot chocolate at my store beforehand.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         So today I thought it would be appropriate to present the Recommendations board at work just so.  If I had to be at work while thinking about her, then why not make the whole point?  This way, everyone can celebrate with a loyal customer’s all-time favourite drink.

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There are definitely many more pieces of her that I’m thinking of today, but this is probably one of the most recurring, as we all enjoy our various mugs of joy and as I pursue my barista career.  I’m grateful for every such memory.

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