Refreshing Earl Grey

Standard

Tea of the Day: Refreshing Earl Grey by Global Teas

Description: Whole leaf organic black tea from the mountains of Assam, India.  Our favorite breakfast tea!  This tea has a rich malty flavor, perfect for starting your day or anytime you need an energy boost.  This tea is delicious on its own, but is also strong enough for you to add milk or sugar if desired.

Dry tea smells very citrusy, even more so than double bergamot earl grey

Liquor is a warm red-brown in the cup

Steeped tea retains the very citrus smell. Before sugar, the tea is surprisingly light for a black tea, refreshing rather than punchy.

Adding sugar  helps emphasize the citrus flavor, making the tea quite refreshing, like the name promised. There is a little roughness in the back of the throat with this tea though, so would probably be best will a little milk for smoothness

Tea Rating: 3.5/5


Hopes, dreams, and expectations are funny things.

They can keep you going, giving you a reason to keep working, picking yourself up again if you fall and keep you moving forward.

In some cases, hope is all that keeps a person alive, and it’s hard to kill, sometimes keeping people going far beyond what you’d expect them to be able to handle or endure.

Hopes, dreams, and expectations are good to have, but they’re not always all sunshine and roses.

Hopes can be dashed.

Dreams can be crushed.

Unmet expectations can lead to disappointment, which can be quite severe, depending on the height of the expectation.

Everyone has had experience with these things, unless you’ve lived a very lucky, very blessed, or very delusional life.

From personal experience I can say that when your hopes and dreams are dashed or expectations are unmet, it can hurt. Sometimes quite a lot, to the point where a re-evaluation of oneself is the only way to get through it.

But that doesn’t mean don’t hope.

For the love of all that is good in the world, please don’t stop dreaming.

Keep expecting great things.

Just do it a little differently.

Hope for many things, so that your soul is not all bound up in one thing, which is another way of saying “don’t put all your eggs in one basket”

Have small dreams as well as big ones, so that you’re always working towards something that is fulfilling to you.

As far as expectations…tread carefully.

Expect a lot from yourself, but remember to be kind, too. You’re not going to run a marathon tomorrow if you haven’t trained, but that’s fine. When you’re talking about/to yourself, expectations can be paired with goals or actions so that you set yourself up to  meet or exceed your expectations.

Example: “I expect to be able to wear my bikini next summer and still feel comfortable,” paired with a goal of working out (whatever that means to you) 3-5 days a week = you rock that bikini when it’s warm again

When you expect things from others, be very careful. If you put someone on too high of a pedestal, they may never meet those lofty expectations, meaning you’ll be constantly let down. That’s not fair to you, or the other person…we’re all human, after all.

Communicate your expectations, and be willing to listen if you’re told they’re not realistic. Also it’s good to remember that if you’re insanely specific about every detail, you leave out the possibility of being surprised, which really takes the fun out of things.

Example: your significant other can’t know that you expect a romantic night out on your birthday if you didn’t say anything, can they?

That being said, I expect all of you to have at least one cup of your favorite tea today. Trust me, you deserve it


“When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are.”
― Donald Miller, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned While Editing My Life

Advertisements

Jasmine

Standard

Tea of the Day: Jasmine Tea by Golden Moon Tea

Description: Freshly picked green leaves layered with aromatic jasmine petals exquisetly crafted by hand to bring out the full flavor and fragrance of the jasmine flowers. A smooth, elegant tea of refinement and character

Smells very floral and sweet, slight grassy hint. There are actual jasmine blossoms in the leaves

When steeped, the jasmine blossoms unfold.

Liquor is light golden green in the cup

The tea has a lovely floral scent and flavor. Simple, but very refreshing

Tea Rating: 5/5


And so we continue to move on.

Resume updated, phone calls made, applications in…

…now we just sit and wait.

I have had one interview, for a job at the local tea place which is terribly exciting. Only issue is that I’ll have to work two jobs if I take that job since it doesn’t pay quite enough to make ends meet

Hence the other applications and the waiting

One thing is for sure… this whole process is draining; I feel like I’ve been more busy without a job than with one!

I’m sure that will pass, although I do hope I stay busy enough not to get bored and lazy whilst I wait to hear back on the jobs I have applied for

My friends have said that I should try to enjoy some of the time off; they all have faith that I will be employed again before I know it.

I hope they’re right, I really really do

Snowflake

Standard

Tea of the Day: Snowflake by The Whistling Kettle

Description: Black tea with almond, coconut and cinnamon; a smooth and easygoing tea.

Smells quite a bit like amaretto and also like a tasty, freshly made granola bar

Liquor is a cloudy-red brown in the cup

Tea actually smells sweeter when steeped

Before sugar, just tastes like sweet almonds but not a whole lot else. Once you add a little sugar the other flavors come out. Tea does need a longer steep than you’d expect

Tea Rating: 3/5


The one constant in life is change

Today my day was spent making phone calls to cut back on costs, and filling out job applications.

This is not a change I planned for but for some reason I feel more confident now than I did before this upheaval

There are,I think, a few reasons for this

First off, the response from my friends and family has been overwhelmingly supportive; asking if there’s anything they can do, offering to get me out of my house for a meal, etc.

One of my friends even said that my friendly, presence has been so helpful to her during her recent rough patch that she would be only too happy to help me out now.

I have to say, getting back the positive I put out feels pretty great

Second thing is that I’m viewing this as a learning experience; Yes, it’s frustrating and I do feel a bit like I failed, but as long as I don’t sit on my fanny and cry I don’t see this holding me back for very long. I now have more experience under my belt and a better sense of what my limits are/ the kind of environment that doesn’t suit me.

Thirdly, I have a plan. There are things I can do to cut costs, and there are job openings that I could very easily apply my skills to. I might even get to work at my local tea shop in the meantime, which is pretty great.

This is a bit of a hiccup, but more than that, it’s a change in direction and will likely take me somewhere I would not have even dreamed, otherwise


“Teaism is a cult founded on the adoration of the beautiful among the sordid facts of everyday existence. It inculcates purity and harmony, the mystery of mutual charity, the romanticism of the social order. It is essentially a worship of the Imperfect, as it is a tender attempt to accomplish something possible in this impossible thing we know as life.”
Kakuzō Okakura, The Book of Tea

White Christmas

Standard

Tea of the Day: White Christmas by Stash Tea

Description: A unique blend of white tea, cool peppermint, and a hint of ginger

Smells like peppermint with an aftertone of ginger. Sweet and sharp

Liquor is honey colored in the cup

The tea tastes and smells pretty strongly of ginger, with a minty finish

Tea Rating: 2/5


Here’s the thing about equality: we have a long way to go. One day soon there will probably be a post about the inequalities that I myself have seen and been balked by

But today, I want to share a slightly different perspective

We have a long way to go, but there is hope, even in the rather traditional town in which I live:

There are several openly trans people working for various retail companies in town who are treated just the same as the rest of the employees, up to and included holding higher level management positions

In the younger subset of the population (18-24 year olds) there is a lot of conversation about being gay or bisexual, and from what I’ve witnessed, it’s not the “oh I’m just experimenting” talk that we’re often led to expect, but open and very real conversations about how they feel. Event the individuals who are sure they’re straight don’t seem to look at it as a hyper-sexualized thing or something negative, but rather as a perfectly normal way to be.

I’ve also seen parents with children who are clearly not being forced to conform to a stereotype of boy or girl; There have been a few times now where I have seen a child that is of an age where it “should” be obvious if they’re a boy or a girl but it’s not because they have been allowed to dress in whatever mix of “boy” and “girl” things that they want and (and this I think is the really important thing) they show absolutely no nervousness about it

We have a long way to go, to be sure, but there is hope.

Merry Mint

Standard

Tea of the Day: Merry Mint by Stash Tea

Description: A festive blend of green tea and lively spearmint and peppermint

Dry tea smells like the best minty candy you’ve ever had

Liquor is a light honey gold color in the cup

Tastes like it smells, like mint candy, but not so sweet that you feel like you’re drinking sugar. Tasty and very smooth

Tea Rating: 4/5


Today I had the opportunity to pass along a little something that my dad passed to me

A song he shared with me when I was having a rough go of it, passed on to some specific people who needed it the most

Simple thing, an idea that just popped into my mind and just a moment to share it

But it mattered.

Because I was giving something that helped me when I was hurting and that caring showed

This got me thinking on what kinds of things we leave behind.

What memories are we making that will not fade away with time?

For my part I want to be something positive in a world of not. If I’m remembered at all, I want to be remembered for my giving heart and steady hugs

I can’t fix what’s broken but I can be a signpost of sorts on the way forward

What do you want to leave behind?


“A simple cup of tea is far from a simple matter.”
Mary Lou Heiss, The Story of Tea: A Cultural History and Drinking Guide

Cinnamon Vanilla

Standard

Tea of the Day: Cinnamon Vanilla by Stash Tea

Description: Spicy warm cinnamon blends with sweet vanilla, soothing chamomile, rooibos and sarsaparilla for a tea that is both soothing and satisfying

Smells a bit like snickerdoodles, mmm!

Liquor is honey orange/gold in the cup

Smells like a snickerdoodle, but with a slightly more artificial tone

Cinnamony and sweet, does not need sugar.However, not as tasty as it smells, a little bland even

Tea Rating: 2/5


I’m sure this has come up before, but I have amazing friends

I have made it this far in my journey of self acceptance and health a lot because of teeth-gritting determination that I did deserve happiness and the perisistance to work on the tough stuff

But I also had the support of some amazing people on this journey; the kind of friend who does not mind being called at 2am or cried on at any given point, who never lets thoughts of guilt that I’m taking too much of their time ever take hold

Simply amazing people

And now a couple of them are going through some rough stuff and I’m even more amazed

Even under this pressure I can learn a thing or two. They’re handling their stuff, buckling down and doing what needs to be done but also being brave enough to ask for help

This a huge deal to me because I have struggled (and still struggle) with admitting that I can’t handle it (whatever it might be) on my own

But these friends of mine have asked, no shame, just “I can’t do this alone, come keep me company?”

Amazing.

I have to admit, also, that it gives me a little tickle of satisfaction that I am one of the people they’ve reached out to.

Right now, there isn’t a lot I can really do, since internal demons have no body and murdering people is against the law, anyway… But, I am more than happy to do what I can, which is mostly just be there as much as possible.

If you’re reading this, know that I am blessed to have you in my life, in big ways and small and if I had to go back and do this again, I’d choose you time and time again. I’ll always try to offer help, but sometimes I’m spacy…so this is me saying the offer is always on the table reach out to me and I’m there as soon as humanly possible. It’s truly the least I can do

Boldly

Standard

Tea of the Day: Boldly, a mix by Meg Daunting via Adagio Tea

Description:  Heading out for a five year mission in space, or just craving something bold and yummy for your tea time? Boldly is earth with a bright splash of blueberry-scented flavor. Tell your doctor and first officer to relax and have a cup with you! [blueberry, Assam medley and almond oolong]

Smells very blueberry with a sweet, nutty hint

Liquor is a lovely dark red brown in the cup.

The nutty smell is stronger once the tea is steeped. Very smooth going down and the tea is rich and fills the mouth. Once sweetened, the blueberry flavor comes out even more

Tea Rating: 4/5


Yesterday I had a hope I had not realized I was hanging onto dashed

The result was a storm of emotions. It hurt, but it wasn’t unexpected, so I was almost mad for being hurt, for a couple of reasons

One: As I said I wasn’t surprised that things were more completely over with the guy that I’d been interested in than I’d hoped they were. So I felt like I did it to myself, so why was I hurt?

Two: I stayed true to my feelings and convictions throughout, doing what I thought was right. I took a chance, and it didn’t pan out…but I got to meet and somewhat get to know another awesome person, and I had a really good time while I was able to see him…so hurt just shouldn’t have a place in such an otherwise positive experience.

Along with that odd mix was another feeling that I don’t think I’ve felt right on the heels of disappointment before:

A sense of peace.

I got the closure that I’d needed…maybe not in the way that I had wanted, but still.

There was honesty between us, and clarity, and now I can move forward with my life, secure in the knowledge that things are the way they are meant to be, that the only thing even worth trying to change is the fact that I let the maybe that was happening stand as long as I did.

I’m honestly excited for what comes next.

Hooray for positive thoughts!