The General

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Tea of the Day: The General by America’s Tea

Description: This malty-flavored tea is bold enough for even a five-star general to enjoy. Take a sip, and you’ll feel like you just saves the world from Axis powers.

Liquor is a rich dark brown in the cup

Dry tea smells bold and a touch grassy, almost like an oolong tea

Steeped tea smells malty, as advertised. The grassy is still there, but muted. 

The tea tastes very strong and coats the mouth, which is pleasant, if a little astringent. Adding sugar lessens that aspect, but makes the aftertaste more bitter.

Tea Rating 3.5/5


Two questions today, because I started this yesterday and never finished it


Question of the day (August 9): What made you compromise? 

It’s an interesting wording for this question: a “what” rather than a “who,” when my experience has always been that you make compromises for the sake of a person (or persons) you care about. Sometimes, like in a work setting, you will compromise because if you can’t reach a middle ground nothing can be done and work grinds to a halt.

Regardless of the setting, though, compromises are made because of people, not because of things.


Question of the day (August 10): Who do you look up to?

My parents. More specifically, my mother. I know I don’t tell her enough, but I am more than a little inspired by her story.

She worked hard in a highly technical field serving her country and providing for her family while also working on college classes so that she could eventually become a librarian. Talk about drive! What’s more is that she is now doing her dream job, the job she went to school for, which is a dream that many never achieve.

Now that I know what my dream job actually is, I can only hope I will be so fortunate and driven as she was (and is) to actually end up where I want to go. I am really lucky to have such a great example in my life to try to emulate

Rocky Mountain High

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Tea of the Day: Rocky Mountain High by America’s Tea

Description: This unique Oolong tea is grown at the same elevation as the Rocky Mountains. Sit back, unwind and embrace the beauty of Colorado with a unique tea blend whose natural sweet floral taste is highly satisfying. Whether you’re just finishing up a day at Breck or enjoying a cool summer night in Denver, this tea elevates your spirits and soothes your soul. You can get two infusions per tea bag with this tea blend. It’s like doubling your money.

Dry tea smells sweet and grassy

Liquor is a light golden green in the cup

Steeped tea smells and tastes more floral than the dry. It is very easy to drink and has a lovely sweet aftertaste that lingers. I can’t say much more except that I really enjoy it.

Tea Rating:5/5


Question of the day: What was the last thing that made you laugh out loud?

My husband to be, as is pretty standard for us. I don’t remember the exact details of what we were talking about at the time, but at one point I was almost doubled over because I was laughing so hard.

I’m glad that we still make each other laugh so much.


Random musing of the day: my thoughts on dude clothes.

The first thing I notice is that unless we’re talking graphic tees, with men’s clothes you get a lot of a few items, whereas with women’s clothes you get a lot of different items but only a few of each one.

For example, when buying jeans in the women’s section, you’re lucky to find more than a handful in your “size,” and have no guarantee that any of that handful will fit. Plus, with all the different styles, finding your “size” in a style that you like can narrow that even further.

Conversely, in the men’s section, you have a few basic styles, such as straight leg, cargo, and elastic waist, but a lot more of each size. And once you know what your size is, you can literally just grab and go once you find it. No dressing room shuffle, no angry glaring in the mirror at jeans that are betraying you yet again.

Then we get to the actual quality of the material. Most women’s jeans have either stretch material in the fabric or are made to be softer, or both. This sounds great, but what it means is that the material ends up being thinner. And, even though just about every woman has some amount of thigh rub (even when I was a size for I’d rub holes on the inside of my jeans just from walking), the seams on women’s jeans are less robust as well. All in the name of being comfortable…except that even the comfort thing doesn’t hold up. Yes, lady jeans may be softer….but with dude jeans there isn’t the worry that you’re going to suddenly have a hole somewhere awkward

This is all in the name of being comfortable…except that even the comfort thing doesn’t hold up. Yes, lady jeans may be softer….but with dude jeans there isn’t the worry that you’re going to suddenly have a hole somewhere awkward. Plus your booty is covered. And you have pockets that you can stick half your arm into.

Really the only downside is that you’ll need a good belt because you’ll have to go with a wider waist to fit them over your hips…

Scott Lang: Ant Man Blend

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Tea of the Day: Scott Lang: Ant Man Blend by AEH at Adagio Tea

Description: A blend of orange, lemon, soleil, and white tangerine tea, accented with orange peel. Full of bright, cheerful citrus flavors, to invoke both Scott Lang’s home state of California and his sunny and optimistic personality.

Dry tea smells very citrusy and bright

Liquor is a light, clear, red brown in the cup.

Steeped tea smells much less citrusy than the dry.

The tea is light an pleasant and slightly citrusy.

Tea Rating: 3.5/5


Question of the day: Did you act your age today?

This question is silly. I’d like to think that’s the point…

What I mean is this: how do you define “acting your age?”

Is it, at 27, going to work and actually doing work and paying bills?

Because if that’s the case then I absolutely I acted my age.

But if it’s being totally serious and no smiles and such, then no.

I spent my lunch playing a game. And a good chunk of my day being excited and laughing. (Wedding planning is great this far out.)

There is a lot of joy in my life and I often get the impression that “act your age” means ignore that. That being an adult means being sad. Or angry. There are a lot of awful and sad things in the world. Sometimes I cry and rage over them.

But today, I chose to be happy and goofy.

If that means I didn’t act my age then I embrace that concept with my whole self.

Comfort and Joy

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Tea of the day: Comfort and Joy by The Republic of Tea

Description: this smooth blend brings notes of rich and warming spices together with well-balanced hits of apple and spice.

Dry tea smells cinnamon and orange to me

Liquor is a dark brown in the cup.

The tea is less flavorful than the scent implies, but this could be because it’s a sample from December that I had forgotten I had. Other than that, a pleasant cup.

Tea Rating: 3/5


I feel I need to write more.

Aside from the fact that there were two months between my post last week and the one before it, I notice that I feel more disconnected from my own thoughts when I’m not doing at least a little writing.

I’m not doing as badly as I have in the past in similar dry spells because I am getting my creative brain a workout because of the photography class I’m taking this summer…but I do find that communicating with my loved ones is a little touch and go as of late.

So, I’m trying a thing: keeping a five-year journal. I fond a list of questions, one for each day of the year, and starting today, I am going to at least answer the daily question. The long-term goal is to keep this up so that I can look back later at it and see how my life has changed and how I have grown.

I can’t promise that I’ll post every question every day to here, but I do hope that it will inspire me to write more often. After all, what’s the point of having a blog if you don’t write in it?


Question for July 10: What happened recently that made you proud of yourself?

I listened to the feedback for my photography class midterm (my instructor does little videos so he can show us what he means). This grade was 3 times what the previous assignments had been, with the same amount of time to do it. The feedback was positive, and he closed with “keep up the good work.” It’s a small thing, but it feels good. It’s good to know that I am actually improving on the skills I already had since I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to effectively learn the mechanics of photography and get better. Maybe a silly worry but it was there.

Cinnamon Orange

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Tea of the Day: Cinnamon Orange by Market Spice

Description: Our signature MarketSpice cinnamon-orange tea in an 8oz cellophane package. This unique spicy, naturally sweet flavor has become world famous, originating in the historic Pike Place Market in Seattle.

Dry tea smells strongly of cinnamon with a citrus undertone

Liquor is an orangey chestnut brown in the cup

Steeped tea is a bit more orangey in scent. The tea itself is sweet and spicy with the orange coming out smoothly in the finish. The tea needs no sugar and would be fantastic cold as well as hot.

Tea Rating: 5/5


An image brought to mind by this song


♪Well I have been searching all of my days, all of my days..♪

This wasn’t supposed to happen.

I’m not supposed to be driving this road like this, our song playing on repeat on the radio, while I sing along, my voice alone carrying us through

And I have been trying to find what’s been in my mind, as the days keep turning into night…

This was supposed to be us together, our second honeymoon, first vacation just us since the kids grew up

..well, I have been standing quietly in the shade, all of my days, watching the sky breaking on the promise that we made…♪

But this is how it is. You were taken from me, by a twist of fate we never would have been prepared for, even if we could have foreseen it.

…I cried aloud, I shook my hands…” What am I doing here, all of these days?”…

I know you’re with me, in some ways, as I look down at my wedding band that flashes as I drum on the steering wheel. You’re in my heart as it beats, and all of my shiniest memories

…Now I see clearly, it’s you I’m looking for, all of my days. Soon I’ll smile, I know I’ll feel this loneliness no more, all of my days…♫

So I drive, with your urn in the seat beside me, scattering ashes and memories as I go. At this point all I can hope is that if I ever make it back home, I’ll somehow be alright.

…As the days keep turning into night, and even breathing feels alright. Yes, even breathing feels alright..


 

No, I don’t know why my brain turned a love song into something sad. Trust me, I wish it hadn’t because it was something like a gut punch in the feels. Not exactly the way I wanted my day yesterday to end. Even so, I hope that writing it down makes it so it can be appreciated for the beauty of it, if nothing else.

Lavender Sencha

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Tea of the Day: Lavender Sencha Green tea by The American Tea Room

Description: Deep green Japanese sencha leaves are accented with tiny pink and violet lavender blossoms in a blend that is at once fresh and classic. The brew is a springy yellow green with assertive aromas of lavender and the ocean, and a soft peppery undertone. A full lavender flavor fills the palate, and then gracefully reveals notes of lime zest, ocean air and cloves. The finish speaks of flowers, steamed young greens and lemon.

Dry tea smells as you would expect, like lavender, with a touch of savory bite behind it

Liquor is a lovely clear golden green color in the cup. Think “spring green”

Steeped tea is very similar to the dry although to me it smells a touch sharper. In taste, however it is lightly floral, with a nice full flavor of lavender at first, followed by something smooth and peppy. It makes me think of citrus, but more subtle, almost like it was flavored with a touch of dried citrus jest.

Adding a little sugar to me makes it taste like and edible bouquet; flowery and sweet with a savoryness that really ties it together. All in all, a very relaxing and tasty tea.

Tea Rating: 5/5


Today a response to the Daily Post’s prompt Natural (warning, it’s not a poem/creative post, it’s some thoughtful prose the prompt brought to mind)


This is going to be a little bit of a rant, so you’re totally welcome to quit reading here. I’m sure tomorrow will be more positive all around

What’s with the insistence that “natural” is synonymous with “good”?  Natural might be good in some cases, like with plant sugar easier for the body to process than modified sugars or artificial sweeteners, but it’s not a perfect system. If you put a whole bunch of sugar in your tea, it’s still not going to be healthy for you, no matter how natural the sugar used. Too much is still too much.

The same kind of thing goes for herbal remedies. I’m not against it per se, and do swear by certain teas being good for some issues–like mint or ginger for upset stomach, licorice for sore throat, echinacea to help fight getting sick in the first place and so on. However there’s a lot of “natural remedies” being touted to work miracles. I mostly see that kind of thing when it comes to weight loss and while some things do help with energy levels and such, it’s not always safe to add a bunch of extra vitamins or extracts to your diet, no matter what the source. Some substances interfere or interact with medications, and every medicine, human manufactured or not, has the potential to have side effects.

Getting away from food, it can be argued that behavior that is natural isn’t always right. The teenage kid down the street may have the nature-given urge to want to put his dick in anything and everything that he can…but that does not meant that it’s a smart idea or the right thing to do, depending on the situation. Some behaviors that come naturally developed when the world was a very different place and have not gone away, but have no place in the here and now.

I also have a problem with “you’re a natural” as a compliment for someone in relation to something they do, like write, or draw, or sing, or run, and so on. I’ve always taken it as meaning that the person makes it look easy or that is seems second nature to them, which on the face of it is a nice thing to hear. But even for someone who has natural aptitude for something, there is usually still work involved. Sometimes, I would argue, even more because when they reach a point where the drawing won’t come out right or the dance step eludes them, they have to both push past the normal block but also the one that says there’s something wrong with them since it’s not working the way it always had. Saying “you’re a natural”  doesn’t convey understanding or respect of the work it still takes.

Citrus Kiss

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Tea of the Day: Citrus Kiss by Good Earth

Description: You don’t have to kiss a lot of green frogs to get the lift you’re looking for. Citrus Kiss™ brings lemongrass and citrus flavors together to brighten up top notch green tea for an amazingly good taste invigoration. Kiss your new go-to green tea hello!

Dry tea smells light, sweet and lemony, with a lovely background of sweetness

Liquor is a super clear golden yellow in the cup

Steeped tea smells a bit sweeter than the dry, and tastes sweeter than I would have expected. It needs no sugar, and is very pleasant in flavor. Light and sweet without being overwhelming whatsoever.

Tea Rating: 5/5


Since I enjoyed writing from a prompt yesterday, doing so again.

Today’s prompt: Mountain


Do not worry about the mountain.

Worry instead, if you must worry at all, about the ground beneath your feet, the air you’re breathing, the flowers on the roadside.

If you’re going it alone, enjoy the solitude. Keep your eyes open, though, because there is likely someone you know tackling this journey, this mountain, as well.

If you have company as you move up your mountain, understand that while you may be walking together, the steps you walk are not exactly the same. It is ok to feel better, or worse or notice different things or remember things differently that your companion.

Your mountain is not about someone else.

If you’re trudging along and someone zips by you, do not worry. They are not better than you, or smarter, or any other such thing. They are on their own journey, and your mountain may not be such for anyone else.

You’re going to encounter situations where you are moving with ease and come across people who are not. Remember to be compassionate at these times. Remember what your mountain was like, or even is like and treat them as though they were you, in another time or another life. Walk with them for a time, if they’d like. Offer your experiences if they seem receptive, or just a should and understanding if they’d rather not talk.

In the end, this mountain is not the end of your life, and (if we’re all honest here) not the last you will climb, perhaps not even the largest.

So, do not worry about the mountain. Worry about the steps you are taking, and the mountain will worry about itself.