Friday, March 24, 2017

A Special Hat for Tea

 Yesterday I headed to the Japanese Gardens
at Portland's Washington Park.
I had a plan for tea and wouldn't miss it for anything.
 As you can see there is a lot of new construction.
 The construction crew were diligently working.
Even in the 2 hours we were there we could see results.
With a peek through the bamboo I could see the new teahouse.
I was excited to have tea on their first day, a soft opening.
Officially they don't open until April 2nd.
 Hard hats were the attire of the day, plus a shiny vest too.
With me is Chloe, the manager of the teahouse.

Stepping inside my "live-in gardener" and I were greeted
by a wonderful staff and serene surroundings.
 Below is my friend, Dana.
If you visit the teahouse, tell Dana hello.
Both Dana and Chloe are members of the
WuWo Tea Ceremony group I belong to.
Our waitress was Melanie and she did a great job!
 First I ordered Sencha green tea, which came with cake.
Not being a green tea fan, I found the Sencha to be a bit
grassy for my liking.
 Then there were these delicious Chikara bars with nuts and fruit.
Chikara means strength in Japanese.
The seaweed wrapped rice was Onigiri with Hijiki seaweed.
 A second tea, Hojicha, was a delicious roasted Japanese green tea.
I did enjoy this tea quite a lot.
And along came another treat with bean paste in the middle.

Just sitting in the teahouse in beautiful surroundings brought
back memories of a time long ago when my grandmother
took me to the Japanese Gardens in San Francisco for tea.
I was about 12 or 13 years old and it made me feel so very grown up.
Of course, there was a walk through the
gardens once tea was finished.
What a perfect mini-vacation adventure in the middle
of the week.
Do you sometimes enjoy a couple hours "mini-vacation"?
I love it when that happens, especially in a
lovely place like the Japanese Gardens.
If you come for a visit to Portland
plan on tea at the Japanese Gardens,
a vacation for sure and you won't have to
wear a hard hat and vest.

Linking to Bernideen at http://blog.bernideens.com/

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Sunshine at Last


Tears touch my eyes
I sing Hallelujah!
It is warming again,
A glorious Spring day
Sunshine is peeping out of the clouds
My heart rises in JOY
Delights in the day
Daffodils greet me
Budding blossoms give a song to my heart
Oh the JOY of Springtime
A gift to me and you
A pause to smile and laugh

What is making you smile and laugh today?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Expect the unexpected, Look for it!

 Recently I have been addicted to watching
chef shows on Netflix.
 It amazes me to see the detail and extent they
go to in presenting amazing meals.
 Most often they work with the grower to  produce
the perfect vegetables and fruit, or meat and poultry.
Only the best will do when serving their customers.
 One particular chef on Chefs Table intrigued me
with his creativity and thoughtfulness.
He is a true artist.
He even had one of his chefs develop an edible
sugar balloon that floated in the air.
Amazing!
He said, expect the unexpected.
He loves surprising people and revealing the magic.
Be open to the present in order to find the unexpected.

The pictures are all things in nature that I found
in unexpected places and in just noticing what I notice.

Do you love the surprise and magic of the unexpected?
Take time to notice.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

World Poetry Day


Just this morning I learned it is World Poetry Day today.
Often I love to share poems and the following one
has been sitting with me for a few days.
Can you just imagine a duck laughing?

Look and See

This morning, at waterside, a sparrow flew
to a water rock and landed, by error, on the back 
of an eider duck; lightly it fluttered off, amused.
The duck, too, was no provoked, but,  you might say,
was laughing.

This afternoon a gull sailing over
our house was casually scratching
its stomach of white feathers with 
one pink foot as it flew.

Oh Lord, how shining and festive is your
gift to us, if we only look , and see.

From Why I Wake Early
by Mary Oliver

Not a duck, but these gulls make me smile.

Enjoy some poetry today!
Take time to "look and see"

Monday, March 20, 2017

Walk with Me - Officer's Row

 One place I love walking, though I don't do it often,
is just across the Columbia River in Vancouver, Washington.
Sunday was a bit drippy with rain, but still it was
a beautiful place to walk with my "live-in gardener".
We did stop at the Visitors Center and purchased
a National Park Passport book, as this is the year
we plan on visiting National Parks.
 Walk with us along Officer's Row.
I just love seeing the old houses built about 1850's.


 There were violets blooming under the trees.





 The hills in the background are Oregon.

 Had to have a sit-down on one of the porches.
 And a peek in one of the windows.

 

 I would love sitting here with a cup of tea.
 In the garden a stone with petroglyph.
Not sure I spelled that right, but an ancient
Indian carving on stone.



 On a sunny day in summer this would be
a perfect place for a picnic.
 I believe music is played here on July 4th.
 It was more of a stroll, but a perfect place
to be on a Sunday afternoon.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

St. Patrick's Day and a Winner

 Ok, you might think I missed the celebration and give-away,
but our internet service provider was down for the whole city of Portland
for the past day and a half.  Frustrating, YES!
Finally, here I am for the celebration a day late, but HOORAY I made it!!!
Well the rainbow was in my neighborhood Wednesday night
and I just knew I would find a pot of gold at the end of it.
I don't think I ever saw a more vibrant rainbow that landed just
in the park down the street.
Now where is my shovel?
I know there must be a pot hidden there.
In the meantime I searched my house for green things
and was surprised at how few green things I had.
This is pretty much it.
Don't you think I need to remedy that?

I hope you all had a tremendous celebration while I was away.

Well let's get to the winner, sort of like a pot of gold
don't you think?
My live-in gardener reached his hand into the pot
and out came the winners name:
Rosemary
Congratulations to you, Rosemary.
I actually believe I have your address
and a package will be in the mail soon.

I hope you all are having an amazing weekend,
now carry on with the enjoyment!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Together is Better


Recently I read a little book by Simon Sinek, Together is Better, a little book of inspiration.
The thoughts were so simple, yet so clearly portrayed.
Here is a couple quotes in the book that I particularly liked:

"There's only one way to avoid criticism; do nothing, 
say nothing, and be nothing." 
~Aristotle

"To go fast, go alone; To go far, go together."  ~African proverb

So take the adventure, continue the walk with me,
for I know that together is better for sure
and to do nothing we are nothing.
Let us plan on moving forward with JOY and laughter.
We will survive and be better for it.

"What good is an idea if it remains an idea?  
Try. Experiment. Iterate, Fail. Try again.  Change the world."
  ~Simon Sinek

What are you willing to step out and do?
What is your most outrageous intention? 
I have some ideas that challenge my thinking,
which I will share along the way.

The picture shows three gaiwans for tea.
Together we can share tea and share the adventure.

Don't forget the give away mentioned last Friday.
Tomorrow is the drawing.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Clockwork Rose Tea Emporium

Each March my sister and I have a date to go for tea.
So off on a new adventure we went.
Clockwork Rose Tea Emporium in Beaverton opened
some time ago and I kept saying I needed to go there.
Finally the day arrived.
I was fascinated to see how a steampunk theme would
carry out into a tea room and I wasn't disappointed.
It was carried out with class and I loved it.
After sitting down and ordering our tea we
enjoyed a very nice caesar salad.
The tearoom serves Harney and Sons teas exclusively.
My sister thoroughly enjoyed Paris and I enjoyed a hefty Scottish black tea.
They were made very well (no bitterness) and delivered in full size teapots.
Our food was brought to us on a 3 tier stand.
There was the traditional cucumber (vinegared) sandwich, egg sandwich,
Then a wrap with meat and cream cheese, a meat pastie, chicken potpie,
and if I remember correctly a quiche.  The pastie and pies were served warm.
All was quite delicious.
Then we each had two small scones with jam, lemon curd,
and their special clotted cream.
They are quite proud of making their own toasty clotted cream
and hope to be able to market it soon.
Whew!  When we got to the top and the sweets we were asking
for a box.  There was a fruit tart, sponge cake, macaron,
cherry pie, and small cakes.
Everything was very fresh and tasty.




They had a nice pastry case and tea making station, which I loved seeing.
It was fun to peek around the tea shop and discover the fun creative touches.
The sitting area was set up to feel like a tea lounge of old,
one where I would enjoy sitting nibbling on a scone and sipping tea
and having an indepth discussion on literature, history, or the woes of the day.
Special touches were everywhere.
The silver teapots full of flowers greeted us
and said farewell right on our table.

 I can definitely recommend visiting
Clockwork Rose Tea Emporium
12412 SW Broadway
Beaverton, Oregon
Phone for reservations:  503-739-5120

Don't forget the give-away on Friday's post!