Monday, August 20, 2018

Monday's Tea Quote

The Tea Party

I had a little tea party
This afternoon at three.
'Twas very small-
Three guests in all-
Just I, myself and me.

Myself ate all the sandwiches,
While I drank up the tea;
'Twas also I who ate the pie
And passed the cake to me.

~Jessica Nelson North

Friday, August 17, 2018

Garden Delights

 The best gift to date for my grandson, D, has been a camera.
He loves looking through the lens and taking pictures.
So off we went a few days ago to explore a garden we hadn't seen before.
Well isn't that what you do with a camera in hand?
 My "live-in gardener" came along to educate the small photographer.
They found bees, sunflowers, and oh so much more.
In the distance I can still spot those pink shorts off on 
picture taking adventure.
The guardian scarecrow close at hand.

This particular day was hot and humid,
but what an amazing sky!
The rain did come for a little while
and then back to normal,
snapping pictures and savoring the day. 

Teach a child while they are young
and all kinds of adventures will be revealed.
I love being part of forming who he is and will become.

Happy weekend, dear friends!

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

AprTea Mall Tastings

 Aprtea contacted me not to long ago and asked if I would review some of their teas.
Most often I love doing it, but I had never heard of this company; so I asked.
Aprtea is located Anxi, China; the capital of the tea industry
where you can find high-quality Chinese tea with "professional tea knowledge".
The owners father had a history of tea and they decided to expand
to international trade in 2017.
I found it interesting that the name Aprtea is because April is the main
month of production for their tea.
Anxi tea is the origin of Oolong tea and Tieguanyin tea which is China's largest market.

The five teas arrived last week and the tasting began. 

1. Zhang Ping Shui Xizu Oolong Tea, Fragrant Orchid Grade One,
Zhangping Fugian, China, 2018 Spring Tea.
A compressed tea in sweet packaging smelled and tasted of flower
in springtime. Delicious flowery oolong. 
I shared this one with my tea group and they all loved it.

2. Keemun Mao Feng Black Tea Grade One, Qimen, Anxi, China, 2018.
Sometimes Keemun's are a little stringent and bitter to my taste,
but having steeped this in boiling water it was quite good.
It would make a lovely breakfast tea.
I also iced it, but liked it better hot.

3. Wuyi Jin Jun Mei Black Tea Honey, Incense Grade One,
Wuyishan, Fujian, China, 2018 Spring.
I have always like Wuyi Jin Jun Mei Black teas and this one didn't disappoint.

4. Yunnan Dianhong Tea Bending Gold Buds Special Grade One,
Fengging, Yunnan, China, 2018 Spring.
Now Dianhong teas are a favorite of mine, so I was looking forward to tasting.
Of the two here I liked this one the best, but it didn't have some of the 
background flavor which I have grown to love.
It was a beautiful tea in little spiral shapes and much care was taken in producing.
It did have a full bodied flavor that would work for a breakfast tea.

5. Yunnan Dianhong Tea Golden Needle Buds Special Grade,
Fengging, Yunnan, China, Spring 2018.
I was amazed when I opened this to see long brown needles of tea.
I had never seen a Dianhong in this shape, it was pretty.
It also was rather powdery, which I wasn't sure what that was.
I found with both Dianhongs I had to rinse well before steeping.
This tea was lighter in color and flavor and didn't have the familiar
Dianhong flavor I love.

In future ordering I can definitely recommend the first three,
but not sure about the last two.
The oolong was by far my favorite
and funny, but it wasn't one I asked for.
I guess Aprtea knew I would like it.
Thanks, Aprtea!

You can find them at

picture: pink teacups from my shelf, rose from my garden.


Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Creepy Feelings!

Recently I shared this picture.
I was sharing with Jeanie at The Marmalade Gypsy the background
and she recommended sharing it.
Now I don't often share negative feelings or things,
but it is good to be attentive to them at times.

On my way home from the beach a couple weeks ago
I decided to take a road less traveled to snap some pictures.
I was traveling alone, but pulled off at a small parking area
along the road. There were people in the distance, but no one nearby.
I set up my pictures and snapped away.
This was my last picture and I began loading up my props.
Yes, sometimes I set up tea pictures with props.
As I finished taking this picture another car pulled up next to my car.
It had two guys in the car with a skull painted on the hood.
I had that creepy feeling.
It's not one I have had often, but I have learned to pay attention.
I moved quickly, put my things in the car, and got in the car.
Once I got in the car, they left.
Now it may have been my imagination
and maybe I wasn't in harms way;
but I pay attention when a creepy feeling grabs hold.

One other time this happened when my daughter was in high school.
I had taken she and a friend to a place that happened to be rather
isolated. Same thing, two guys pulled up and I quickly ushered the girls
to the car.  It wasn't until many years later that my daughter said she
had the same feeling when that happened.

These stories I am sharing because I have found
the importance of "noticing what you notice", 
pay attention to how you feel in a situation
and act moving to safety.
May we as women travel always in safety
and pay attention to our gut feelings.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Monday's Tea Quote

The simple pleasure,
like a lump of sugar in your morning tea.
Sweetness to soften the day.
~Corey Amaro of Tongue in Cheek blog

Picture: My favorite English style teapots in a row.
Have a wonderful week.
Now I am off to the gym to make it a good start to my day.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Not My Garden Flowers

 No two gardens are the same.
No two days are the same in one garden.
~Hugh Johnson
 A garden is never as good as it will be next year.
~Thomas Cooper
 Half the interest of a garden is the constant exercise of the imagination.
~Mrs. C.W. Earle

 All gardening is landscape painting.
~Horace Walpole
Oh and the fragrance in a garden sends our imagination on a journey.

Taken not long ago at the Lan Su Chinese Gardens, Portland, Oregon.
What peacefulness and beauty resides there.

Happy weekend, dear friends!
I can't believe another week has come and gone.
Savor each day and make it special.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Longing for Adventure!

 Have you ever been reading and one word, 
yes just one word, hits you in your heart? Recently in a magazine the word "longing" just jumped out and grabbed me. 
What does it mean: yearning, strong, persistent desire or craving, especially for something unattainable or distant: filled with longing for home. an instance of this: a sudden longing to see old friends.

For me longing means adventure!
I long for adventures.
I longed for adventure even as a child,
to travel to places yet unseen,
or climb the highest tree,
or take off on my bicycle and travel as far as I could go.
Right this moment my longing is to travel.
To tell you the truth it doesn't much matter where,
but just to go, see, savor, learn, and embrace whatever there is out there.
I have thought long and hard about travel.
Where would I want to go?
Well I do love France, yes I do!
But I love other places too.
Places yet unseen are beckoning me,
maybe Cuba, the east coast of the US, Belize, Alaska,
Greece, Turkey, India, China, Japan, Ireland, more of Spain,
Portugal, Slovenia, do you get it?
I want to see it all. 
Don't get me wrong, I have loved all the travel I have done.
But still!
It is the longing in my heart, adventure!

What do you long for?

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Darjeeling Teas, My Favorites!

 Tea in the gardens is something I cherish.
In my canister is Lochan Tea,
Doke Silver Needle, Second Flush 2018, Bihar, Hand Made Organic White Tea.  The dry leaf was just beautiful. There was something quite soft in appearance and fragrance. Most often white teas don’t intrigue me, but just from the appearance I wanted it to be good. The taste and fragrance of the steeped tea was like springtime with the softness of flowers in the cup. 
The fountain was a refreshing place to sit and sip in the early morning.
Though I mentioned the white tea, among my favorites is Darjeeling teas.
Lochan Tea was so generous in sending me samples that I wanted to review them all right here for you. You can find them at

Darjeeling teas are at the top of my list along with a good Oolong or Yunnan Gold/Dian Hongs, so it was fun to have the opportunity to taste so many different Darjeelings. I primarily buy my Darjeeling from Thunderbolt Tea, but there are more than several in the following list that I would purchase from Lochan Tea.

 Goomtee Classic Muscatel, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling Exclusive – I enjoyed Assam fine, but I do enjoy returning to a good Darjeeling.  Love the fruity/musty throat taste and just the fragrance of Darjeeling. I can just imagine the scents of these hillsides and walking into a tea shop to taste the delights of this part of India. It delights my soul.
      Giddapahar Imperial Muscatel, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling Exclusive. Tasting in the back of my throat is a fruitiness that I so often notice in a nice Darjeeling tea. I think that is what I love about each of them, as I am a fruit lover. Delicious!
    Arya FTGFOP 1 CH Delight, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling Organic, 
by now the memories of Darjeeling are running together in my mind.
 I do love that they are a lighter blackness than the Assam. 
Some even seem a bit like an oolong.

 Glenburn FTGFOP 1 CH, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling. 
It’s interesting that I love this company and Glenburn estate, but Glenburn Darjeeling’s never quite live up to my expectations.   
They are good, but not extraordinary.
  Sourenee FTGFOP 1 CH Musk, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling Organic.  Sitting down this morning this tea was just the right one to savor. A straight forward Darjeeling tea, not floral, but just a nice simple black tea.
      Kanchaan View FTGFOP 1 CH, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling.  
 It is a nice black tea, but doesn’t really have the sweet Darjeeling flavor I love. More of a simple black tea.
    Jungpana Vintage Muscatel, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling Exclusive.  
 Ahh, now here is what I love in a good Darjeeling.
I have enjoyed teas from Jungpana before and this one doesn’t disappoint. Love the fruity after taste, full of wonderful flavor. This one I would order more of.
 Upper Fagu FTGFOP 1 CL, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling.  
 This one I enjoyed. It had a slight fruity taste, but not as
much as Jungpana Vintage Muscatel.

 Rohini Imperial Enigma, Second Flus 2018, Darjeeling Exclusive.  
 This tea has the Darjeeling flavor I do enjoy and I would buy it again.  
A lovely back mouth feel and flavor.
  Oaks SFTGFOP 1 CH, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling Organic.  
 This tea also has the Darjeeling flavor I love.
A bit of sweet fruitiness in the back throut. I would buy this one too.
   Niroulla’s Smoked Wonder, Second Flush 2018, Darjeeling Exclusive.  I didn’t particularly taste smoke, but found it a nice black tea for breakfast. I would order this one.  It wasn’t quite the lightness of the Darjeeling’s I tend to drink, maybe a combination of that and the Dian Hong’s I like. It didn’t have as much of the fruity after taste, but still good.

Thanks, Lochan Tea, for some really good teas to taste.
I enjoyed the tasting!


Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Embrace the Kid in You!

No matter where you walk.
No matter where you go.
Water and dirt or sand will call to you.
Find that kid in you.
Embrace him or her!
Stomp through the puddles.
Leave the umbrella home.
And if there is running water,
running through the sand or dirt
kneel down and play awhile.
What castles can you build?
What dreams can come true?
If only in your imagination
and a bit of water too.
Embrace the kid in you!
Delight in a little play.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Monday's Tea Quote

No matter what color your skin,
or what language you speak,
when you sip a cup of clear tea giving off a delicate fragrance,
and when you feel deeply that it helps not only produce saliva and slack the thirst,
dispel sleepiness and weariness,
but also prevent disease and benefit health,
you cannot help but praise highly its wonderful effects,
and hold in esteem the people who produce it.
~Yang Jiang Ming

Something to think on today.