Monday, January 15, 2018

Tea at Twenty Six Divine, Charleston, South Carolina

In early January, my family and I enjoyed a lovely and cozy afternoon tea at Twenty Six Divine in Charleston, South Carolina.

As is fitting for an establishment located in Charleston, Twenty Six Divine serves teas produced by the Charleston Tea Plantation.

We had our fill of savories, scones, and sweets made by owners and chefs Jenn and Enan Parezo.

proprietress Jenn Parezo

This was a lovely experience that I highly recommend to any tea lover who visits Charleston, South Carolina.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

January is Hot Tea Month So Visit your Local Library!

Here is the northern hemisphere, January is the perfect time for all things cozy.  And what could be more cozy than a cup of hot tea?  January is observed as the official Hot Tea Month in the US, Canada, and Britain.  (It may be observed elsewhere as well.)

I found a very thorough list of ideas on how to observe this Hot Tea Month over at a blog post entitled 31 Ways to Celebrate Hot Tea Month.  One thing that I would add to this well-thought-out list is "Visit your Local Library!"  Books on tea can be found in various sections of the library, depending on the facet of tea that they focus on.  But you are sure to find a number of books on tea in the non fiction section of books that begin with the numbers 641. (This is according to the Dewey Decimal System of classification which is used by most public libraries in the United States.)

So, as winter blasts the great outdoors, take some time to curl up with a book from your library and brew a cup of hot tea.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

New Year's Resolution 2018: How It Involves Tea

My new year's resolution for 2018 involves tea - and all other aspects of my life.  My guiding word for the year will be mindfulness.  You have probably heard of mindfulness, but may not have thought about how it could relate to your love of drinking tea.  This article, How to Be Mindful With a Cup of Tea lays out the connection beautifully.

The definition of mindfulness that I found with a quick online search is as follows:

  1. 1.
    the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.

    "their mindfulness of the wider [tea] tradition"
  2. 2.
    a mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.

In 2018, I will try to follow and journal about my interest in tea and my experiences with mindful tea drinking here on this blog.  This will, I hope, result in regular reviews of my tea drinking experiences, my thoughts on various tea-related books that I have read, and my ongoing creating of tea-themed DIY projects.  In sum, I will be blogging about the same things I have touched on in the past - but with greater attention to and focus on detail in the coming year.

I hope you will continue to visit and share your thoughts and reactions with me!

Harney & Sons Lotions

I was so excited to find a container of Harney & Sons tea scented lotion in my stocking. I had no idea Harney & Sons carried lotions. As you see in the photo, the lotion I have is called "Earthy."   It is scented with Harney & Sons Lapsang Souchong tea so it has a slight smoky fragrance.  At first I was not sure if I would like this smoky note in a lotion, but I have enjoyed wearing it this past week.  The smoky scent is subtle so when I wear it I feel more like "woods" than "campfire."

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Christmas Morning Tea

We had a lovely Christmas morning at my house. As usual, the first thing I did upon waking up was to heat water for tea.  I brewed my first pot and drank it while opening gifts with my family.  After opening gifts, I just had to make Christmas morning's second pot of tea.  I used my new VAVA electric temperature controlled tea kettle to heat the water.  And once the water had boiled, I poured it over one of the tea blends that I had found in my stocking, the Victorian London Fog blend from Harney & Sons.  This tea was delicious!  It was smooth and tasted of vanilla and citrus.  Yum. I look forward to finishing off the sampler packet with another pot of tea in the coming days.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas Eve DIY French Macaron Ornaments

Happy Christmas Eve! Just finished a craft project: French macaron ornaments made from bottle caps.  You can read about this project later today on my other blog, My Creativity Diary.  My family and I adore macarons, as they remind us of our trips to Paris and to Charleston, South Carolina.  We have bought macarons in both cities. So I made these macaron Christmas ornaments as a reminder of our vacations together.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Very Last Minute Gift Ideas: Your Local Groceries

If you need a quick, last minute gift for someone who enjoys tea, run out to your local grocery.  Many grocery stores carry Tea Time Magazine.  I have loved tea for years and only just now subscribed to this magazine.  So there is a chance that this would not be a duplicate gift.

If you have a Whole Foods Market in your area, you might pop in for a look at their tea aisle.  The Whole Foods in my town carries a wonderful selection of teas - some bagged and others loose.  If you do not have a Whole Foods store nearby, visit the company website and print out their informative  "Guide to Tea."  You can roll it up the printed pages and secure the bundle with washi tape or a red ribbon. This would make a fun and unexpected gift for a tea drinker.

And speaking of printing out tea-related information from the web, curate your own list of favorite tea blogs and/or online tea companies.  Type up the list with the URLs.  Print the list on nice paper.  And again, roll up and decorate the bundle. Anyone who is interested in tea would enjoy such information and would appreciate the effort that you put into creating the reference page.

All of these ideas can be done or created at the last minute!  So go out and spread tea love!

Monday, December 18, 2017

Last Minute Christmas Gift for the Tea Lover: Wal Mart

One quick, and perhaps nearby, place to find a tea-related gift is Wal Mart.  The Wal Mart closest to my home carries this adorable, large capacity teapot.  It is from Wal Mart's Pioneer Woman line of products.  This 2.7 quart capacity teapot is the perfect gift for your tea lover who drinks large quantities of tea OR for someone who entertains with tea.  I fit neatly into both of those categories, so this teapot is a welcome addition to my cupboard.