Friday, September 28, 2012

Autumn Tea Continued

Autumn Tea has arrived in my cup once more.
A small adventure to World Market/Cost Plus after yesterday's post
brought some Autumn teas into the house.
Oh yes!  I do enjoy a nice Autumn tea.
My favorite all time tea no matter what time of the year is Yunnan Gold.
I am not a huge fan of flavored tea, but every once in the while I need to expand and taste.

What I found was:
First, Republic of Tea Pumpkin Ginger, the scent was totally delicious.  I thoroughly enjoyed it for a smooth, flavored black tea for Autumn, but then I have a weakness for Pumpkin Spice when I buy chai at Starbucks in the Autumn.
Second, Republic of Tea Hot Apple Cider, it had a nice smooth flavor also, but lighter with a back note of a tangy apple.  My husband should like this one as it is a caffeine free herbal.
Third, Twining's Pumpkin Spice Chai, the scent was good, but didn't knock your socks off like the first tea.  I am thoroughly enjoying the pumpkin spice, not to overbearing black tea.  It is good with a splash of milk.

Last year for Autumn I had Harney & Sons Cranberry Autumn.  It was good, but a bit too much tangy tartness for me.
So if you are looking for an Autumn tea check out the above and enjoy a cup of tea this weekend.
Thanks to each of you that left suggestions, I am still exploring.
Happy Tea drinking weekend to you all!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Autumn Tea?

I am sorely in need of some new tea for Autumn.
For you see my cup is bare.
It is a mixing and matching of tidbits in the cupboard.
Yes, there is tea there, but of course the ones I love are gone.
So it is a bit of a basic black from Taiwan mixed with an Assam,
not bad when that is what's there.
Soon I must venture out into the world,
as some new favorites for Autumn are needed here.
What do you suggest I add to my cupboard?
A cupboard that needs some Autumn flavors to share.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Gossamer Wings

This dragonfly visited my yard just the other day.
His wings were so delicate, you could see right through them.
They reminded me of fairy wings.
How could these delicate wings take him far?
I learned this week that he was getting ready to migrate.
I didn't know this about dragonflies.
He seems to like the sunshine, so I am imagining
him on some warm tropical island this winter.
If you could fly away with this beautiful dragonfly for the winter,
where would you go?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Evening in the Greenhouse

At times a greenhouse is not a greenhouse,
but it becomes a gathering place.
A place to share dreams.
A time to catch up in life.
The greenhouse is settling into it's
multi-purpose in life,
just like a woman.
Though my husband uses it for a "man-cave",
it is my place to share a meal or play in with a friend.
It seems this greenhouse is becoming a happy place.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Friday, September 21, 2012

Sleep Baby Sleep

A recent adventure into lullaby land.
I could just imagine the beautiful lights hanging over my bed like starlight.
Pillows kept calling to me wanting to cuddle and sleep.
Did Alice sleep in the beautiful bed?
I wanted to know, but didn't find out.
So I dreamed of dreamland and wandered with my camera.
There was "Good Stuff" there, but nothing came home
with me but dreams and photos to share.
How I would have loved curling up on that bed, sleeping
in the garden, with dreams and delights dancing through my head.

Photos taken at the annual Flea Market at Deepwood Estates, Salem, Oregon

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Alice Doesn't Live Here

No, Alice doesn't live at my house or at yours,
but there are times when she shares tea with you and me.
The table is set and ready for tea.
Shall we sit for awhile and drink from the elixirs set here.
Pick a cup from the tree in the center,
don your favorite hat,
and we will sing.
It's a party for sure,
festive indeed.
We will dance under the stars,
laugh with the day light,
and sing with our hearts.
What silliness can we make?
Who will we invite?
For Alice doesn't live here,
but she is sharing tea today.

Photos taken last Saturday at Deepwood Estate in Salem, Oregon

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

New Creation

Photo taken in my yard this weekend.  Do you know what kind of caterpillar it is?

New Creation

Ah. but to be a butterfly upon a tea leaf,
to decipher the hieroglyphics upon a wing,
or trust the darkness of transformation.

I bow to the god before me,
and drink the essence of
beauty's sweet nectar.

from Looking Deeply into Tea
by Shelley and Bruce Richardson

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Do you stop to reflect on your life from time to time?
Do you take moments to sit in the silence?
What does this time tell you?

With the coming of a grandson and reflecting on the seasons of my life
I pause, sip a little tea (of course), and wonder what the next seasons will bring.
I am picturing a different me in each of those seasons.
A young me that was care-free, but quiet.
A mom me that tended and cared for my children.
A professional me that went back to school at 40 years old
and had a wonderful career that I loved.
A retired me that once again is learning to play and
at the same time use my voice.
I am looking forward to a grandmother me that plays, laughs, and hugs.
Above all else I am still becoming the me I can love.

Be at peace dear friends and learn to love the you that you are.

Photo: taken at Hearst Castle in California

Monday, September 17, 2012

Friday, September 14, 2012

Good Morning Sunshine

The morning sun is shining like a glorious hello,
saying come join me as we share a cup of tea in the garden.
Soon, very soon the clouds will come and the rain will fall.
Step out into the morning and enjoy tea in the sun.
Have a delightful weekend.
I hope the sun is shining and you have time to sit in the garden
and savor the moment under the sun.
Maybe you are reading a special book while sitting there too.

What tea and what book would you take to the garden today?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Tea Tins


Found recently at the antique mall for $6.
The best price I have found online was $7.95 and up.
On the bottom of the tin it says:
"Acknowledged throughout the world as the most delicious
obtainable.  At the great Tea Expositions in Ceylon and
India, Lipton's Tea, grown on Sir Thomas Lipton's Estates,
was awarded the First Prize and Gold Medal as the -
Choicest Tea produced."
From what research I can find, this tin was from around the 1950's
and was used for advertising.
One use I found was to turn it into a paint box for art supplies.
I kind of like the traveling tea party with teabags and chocolate.
What do you think?
Do you collect tea tins?
I don't collect (smiling), but I can't toss them away.
This is the first I have purchased.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Tomato Soup

Harvest time is one of my all time favorite times!
This year I came across a cold tomato soup recipe that I am in love with.
Be aware this is for the over abundance of tomatoes in the garden,
but then I took almost everyone of them this week that had ripened just for this.
Photo doesn't do it justice.

Chilled Tomato Soup with Avocado Salsa
from Williams-Sonoma

2 Tbs. olive oil
5 large shallots, finely diced (about 1 cup)
4 lbs. (8 or 9 medium) ripe, juicy tomatoes, cored and cut into big pieces
3 fresh thyme sprigs
1 cup tomato juice (water or chicken broth works too) I used 2 cups
1 tsp. sea salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste

For the salsa:
1 ripe, firm avocado
1 shallot, finely diced
2 Tbs. fresh lime juice
1 Tbs. finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 tsp. olive oil
Sea salt, to taste
Sour cream or creme fraiche for garnish

In a wide heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, warm the olive oil.  Add the shallots and cook,
stirring often, until softened but not browned.  about 5 minutes.  Add the tomatoes, thyme, tomato juice,
salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes.

Pass the soup through a food mill (I put it in blender).  If the taste and texture are a little thin, return the soup to very low heat and cook, stirring frequently, until thick and flavorful.  Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.  Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 3 hours or overnight.

To make the salsa, peel, pit and dice the avocado.  In a medium bowl, toss the avocado with the shallot,
lime juice, cilantro and olive oil.  Season with salt.  Ladle the soup into individual bowls.  Top each with a spoonful of salsa and a spoonful of sour cream.  Serves 4 to 6.


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Grandson Coming

Soon, very soon I will have a grandson.
This is something beyond my wildest imaginations.
Yet somewhere in my heart I decided to save the
crib my children slept in and the quilts that wrapped them.
Now this special crib is sitting in my home waiting for
visits from a grandson.
I found the sweet mobile recently at a baby store
and just knew this would have to be there to greet him.
The white basket underneath once held my grandson's mama.
The large embroidery I made long ago.
The small embroidery my mother made for me once upon a time.
The quilt with the pink trim my husband's grandmother made for our daughter.
The yellow quilt was made by my husband's mother.
Yes, it is a family affair in this corner of my world.
Thought you would enjoy seeing a little corner made just for my grandson.
A grandson that will be here soon.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Friday, September 7, 2012

Breakfast with Nature

As I have shared before, the sunflowers in our garden came from a gift from God planted by the birds.
Now I see why, they knew they would need breakfast some day soon.
So when I peaked outside my kitchen window this week this is what I saw.
I just love sharing my garden and my morning with nature.
It brings a song to my heart and JOY to my soul.
Are you sharing breakfast with nature where you live?
Are you delighting in the day?
Now just tell them to leave my figs alone,
they were planted by us and we are waiting for the sun to ripen them!
Just smiling!  Can I share?
Happy weekend, dear friends!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Tea and Balance

Recently I was given the book, Looking Deeply into Tea,
Thoughts and Prayers by Shelley and Bruce Richardson.
From time to time I will share a thought from this book.

Looking at the woman balancing the teacups on her head earlier this week
 I can fully appreciate the following:


Balance is peace.
It is the present moment.
No dwelling in the past or gazing at the future.

Tea in the teacup,
just the right amount,
makes the perfect cup.

Oh yes, balance.

Macarons found at the Vancouver Farmer's Market,
C'est La Vie, located soon in downtown Vancouver, Washington on Main Street.
The cup and teapot brought out this week to use to celebrate the beginning
feel of Autumn in the air.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Moon

I was determined to get pictures of the blue moon, but it ended up being September 1st.
There was a breeze that even made my tripod move, so it was a challenge.
When the moon came up over the horizon it took my breath away.

I had just heard that Neil Armstrong had died.
He once walked on this very moon.
It was a time when dreams came true.
Americans had big dreams.
As we looked at that moon, no matter where we lived,
we came together in possibilities and wonder.

Can we learn to dream again?
Can we come together with hope once more?

My heart is heavy with what I see.
Is there no desire for greatness?
Can we still take small steps and giant leaps?
Please, please - let's work together and make this a better place.
Come and dream with me.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Warrior Woman

Sunday while visiting an art show here in the city,
I came across this sculpture.
As you must know by now, I just love anything that makes me smile.
This sculpture did just that.
The little sign explained that it represented women who juggle
life and I must say with grace and peace.
It isn't lost on me that those are teacups sitting there.
How fun is that?
She is definitely a "Warrior Woman".
If you would like to see more of the artists work
you can visit her here:

Monday, September 3, 2012