Monday, July 24, 2017

TeaFestPDX, a longer post!

I am getting right down to business here today.
Next week we will return to walking with me,
but this past week there was no walking.
Maybe there was a bit of running as many tea lovers
in Portland, Oregon prepared and pulled off the first
annual tea festival here.
My job was to take care of the English/British venue
and find 6 workshop presenters. 
Arriving early Saturday to set things up for
the workshops, I took a few moments to stop by and see
vendor tables.
Into the tent I went and found Babette Donaldson of the Tea Sippers Society.
She was giving away her Emma Lea books
and many parents were delighted.
Babette also was one of my presenters.
She had a workshop on making your own tea blends.
It was a fun time of getting hands on experience.
I know my "live-in gardener" loved the blend he created.
Susan Patterson and her husband, James, were there too.  
Susan, aka Earlene Grey, has published 5 books of poetry.  
At least 2 of her books involve tea.
She is coming out with a new book next week called Passions.
Toward the end of the day Susan did a poetry reading
in the English/British venue.
It was fun to sip a bit of Earl Grey tea as we listened to Susan read.

Here is the vendor tent before the doors were opened.
Several years ago I did a review of Plum Deluxe Tea
right here on this blog; so it was fun to see them represented
in the vendor booth.
They have some great blended teas.
Then Jennifer Petersen was ready and waiting for
the event to begin.  Jennifer has several books too.
Jennifer presented in the English/British venue
on the Cultural and Financial History of Tea.
I stopped by to chat with this tea vendor that
had come up from California to be part of the festivities.
His company is Finest English Tea.
There was a lovely array of vendors selling tea, sipping tea,
tea ware, and books.  Oh did I mention kombucha, Yes!
There was a lot of kombucha too.
My first presenter of the day came in costume.
Nora Azevedo is a local history buff and costumer,
a member of the Oregon Regency Society.
She shared Regency Apparel for tea time
and tea rituals of that era.
I don't have a picture to share, but the second
presenter was Cindy Sutliff who has a tearoom
called Tea Time in St. Helens, Oregon.
She shared the difference between high tea and afternoon tea.
In the afternoon a dear friend, Brenda Burg, a baker
and owner of Newberg Bakery gave a demonstration of
making scones.  Yummm!  Her scones are delicious.
It was a warm day, but those in attendance seemed to be enjoying 
sipping tea.  I took some time to walk around and see what was 
happening.  For the first year we had no idea how many to expect,
but thought maybe around a 1000 would come.
It was packed all day long.  The estimates are at about 2000 attendees.
Whew!  All the volunteers had to hustle and even run to buy paper cups,
as we ran out of cups.  And a tea festival really needs cups.
This is inside the vendor booth during the day.  It was packed.

Susan Patterson reading poetry was a nice way to end the day.
As you can see there was alot of sipping and sharing of tea.
That is Kevin of Fly Awake Tea shop here in Portland,
he was making the tea.
Not the best of pictures, but this was our WuWo booth
where we were promoting our monthly gatherings for tea.
We also had tables for gently used tea related items to
sell to raise money for next years event.
More tea sipping.  It definitely was for the most part a young crowd
and had the vibe of a party.
Richard Brandt and his friends had some gorgeous
hand made teaware for sale.

And as the day came to an end there was still plenty of 
sipping and sharing going on.  
Remember the puerh teas from Teabook I shared last week,
that was their booth and Jeffrey in the white shirt being very
enthusiastic about tea. 

Thanks to Harney and Sons for donating tea to be shared and
served in my workshops!
Thanks to Tea Time Magazine for donating magazines to hand out
to the attendees!
I think the attendees went home with a bag full of goodies
and a tummy full of tea.

This is a longer than normal post, but hope you enjoyed a glimpse
of the TeaFestPDX, first annual tea festival.
Maybe next year you might like to come and sip with us here
in Portland, Oregon.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Renewal and Shared Tea

 Out of focus, but still I like it.

Recently three friends I worked with at Jantzen Swimwear
in the 1980's came for tea in the gardenhouse.
It was a special time of renewing friendship,
sipping tea, and nibbling on pineapple upside down cake,
berry compote, and madelines.
The tea we sipped was a lovely first flush Darjeeling
called Castleton Moonlight and a Rose Tulsi herbal.

The date had been set several months ago,
but when the time came the roof on my house was being
torn off and replaced.  All week I struggled,
should I cancel the tea time or suffer through the noise?
The gardenhouse is like a little cocoon, so I decided to continue on.
How happy I did.
Amazingly the guys on my roof worked on the front of the house,
so our tea time in the back of the yard had peace, friendship,
sipping, and nibbles.

Friendship over the years is so special.
Getting to share that friendship with 3 creative, strong women
was the very best.

 Linking with Bernideen at

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Canyon Road, Known for it's Art

I didn't grow up in a family that particularly appreciated art;
but I knew I loved art and creativity.
I pulled together a bit of art knowledge when the opportunity would arise.
By the time I attended design school at the age of 40
 I soaked in the love of art
through art history classes and hands on art classes.
My heart still soars just to be surrounded in the
beauty of a persons creativity.
Even in the structure of these buildings,
oh the colors and form just sing to my heart.
Strolling through the galleries along Canyon Road
in Santa Fe, New Mexico was a dream come true.
Aren't these collages amazing?

Art was everywhere I looked and I was delighted.
I could have danced here.

This sculpture touched my soul.
It was me as a child.
And this one too was me.
Now I dream of visiting here again, surrounded by creative souls
and tuck them deeply into my heart.

As mentioned yesterday, Georgia O'Keeffe was one of my favorites.
Do you have a favorite artist or a friend that just surrounds
her or himself in creative pursuits?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Santa Fe Churches, Delight the Soul

Each of the three churches we entered was beautiful.
This first one is the oldest church in the Continental US,
built in the 1600's.
San Miguel Mission Church.

And then as we walked we found the Loretto Chapel,
built in the 1870's.
It is now used as a wedding chapel.
The main feature of this chapel is the mystery staircase.
I understand that the story goes that the nuns prayed
for someone to come and build a staircase.
A carpenter came one day and built this free standing staircase.
Upon completion, the carpenter disappeared without payment.

Then the final church, which is actually the only one
we originally planned to visit, is St. Francis Cathedral.
It was built in 1886 and from the main plaza of Santa Fe
you can see it just at the end of the road.

Do you search out churches when traveling?
I find that in the hurry, rush season of cramming
in as much sight seeing as possible,
a pause, a breath, a prayer
in a church centers me.
It refreshes and delights my soul.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

One Morning in May - Georgia O'Keefe

One morning in May I was so excited,
I was finally headed to the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum.
Arriving to early, I found time to browse nearby for awhile.
I would have bought you this hat, but I didn't know your size.
Maybe you would have preferred some boots.
We strolled through the neighborhood on a quiet morning in May.
Finally it was time.
Georgia O'Keeffe is one of my favorite women artists.
We took our time and walked with a museum docent throughout
the museum.  I am so glad we did, as I learned so much.
Most pictures we were allowed to photograph,
but really I just soaked it in and enjoyed.

So different than the flowers, simple and elegant.

A different image of the artist.
Do you like Georgia O'Keeffe's art?
Who is your favorite?
After leaving the museum there was a stroll through this garden.
How I loved this quiet, peaceful morning in Santa Fe.