Friday, March 30, 2012

Dear Little Hummer

Recently on a warm winter afternoon I was sitting outdoors for awhile.
Suddenly I heard a strong fluttering noise above my head.
There he was welcoming me to his yard.
This dear little hummer came to share the afternoon,
he with his sweet drink and I with my tea.
What a perfect companion for tea.
I sat silently watching and savoring the moments.
He in his green coat and I in my black.
Oh I am so happy I was sitting there on a warm winter afternoon.
Just pure JOY to share the afternoon with you.

Have you had a close encounter with nature lately?
If not, step outside and savor a few moment in the out of doors.
Happy weekend, dear friends!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Matcha, the Color of Green

When thinking of tea and green most often I think of a regular green tea.
There is, however, a tea that the color green just shines.
It is Matcha, in the green family.
Have you heard of it?
Most often it is associated with the Japanese Tea Ceremony.
It is a fine powder high in antioxidants and is whisked before serving.
Stephanie at Steph's Cup of Tea had a very good display recently of the
accoutrements of matcha tea, which can be seen here.
For chefs that like to cook with tea, matcha is a favored ingredient.
There is matcha ice cream, matcha chocolates, matcha specialty drinks, matcha
shortbread cookies, matcha pasta, and just about any other imaginable combination.
Recently I heard of a matcha marinade for soba noodle salad.
It sounds so good, I really must try it soon.
It is a mixture of matcha, sesame oil, sesame seeds, scallions,
then toss in some snow peas, pea shoots, or asparagus.
Doesn't that sound yummy?

A good source for purchasing matcha is
This morning they posted a youtube showing a different
way of preparing matcha, which I thought you would enjoy!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Road Less Traveled

From Horses at Midnight Without a Moon by Jack Gilbert
Our heart wanders lost in the dark woods.
Our dream wrestles in the castle of doubt.
But there's music in us. Hope is pushed down
but the angel flies up again taking us with her.
The summer mornings begin inch by inch
while we sleep, and walk with us later
as long-legged beauty through
the dirty streets. It is no surprise
that danger and suffering surround us.
What astonishes is the singing.

This morning this quote was sitting in my inbox
and that last line particularly struck my heart.
Even though we wander and struggle some days,
"What astonishes is the singing".
I do hope you are hearing that singing today.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Special Gift

I love giving gifts,
but have a difficult time receiving.
Are you like that or is it just me?
When giving a gift I love to think about that person
and figure out something special I think they might like.

For my birthday this year my husband gave me such a thoughtful gift.
It is a Mother Goose book, but just not any Mother Goose book.
It is a first edition book from 1944.
What makes it extra special is the illustrator is one of my all time favorites,
Tasha Tudor.
I have a collection of Tasha Tudor books, but nothing as special as this one.
I wish I could show you all the illustrations and sometime I may share more.
But for today just enjoy two pages here of my very special gift.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Friday, March 23, 2012


Seeing the daffodils of Springtime just makes me want to sing!
The centers remind me of trumpets blaring and voices rejoicing.
On this the beginning of Spring may we rejoice,
lift our voices in song, laugh, play, and be happy!

What is making you happy today?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

World Water Day

On Facebook this morning I learned that today is World Water Day.
What a perfect day to celebrate water with tea in my cup
and snow on the ground outside my window.
What would we do without water?
It would certainly be a different world.
I am thankful for the water I use each morning for my pot of tea,
for my shower, to clean my house, and wash my clothes.
Then I submerge myself in water several times a week for pure JOY and exercise too.
So let us rejoice, raise our cup of tea, and celebrate the water God has provided for us.

My cup is new to my collection and I just love
Johnson Brothers Strawberry Fair.
I love that I found it in March when the strawberries are
just beginning to gain a sweetness and taste so good from the market.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Picture of Passion

Yesterday I described this picture.
Does it look like you imagined?

In a magazine recently I tore out a description of someone's business
and how she came to have that business.
The very first sentence was;
"Passion for me has been discovering what I love and sharing this passion with my clients."
Then she went on to describe where her passion for life came from.
Her love of travel and wanderlust came from growing up with parents
that loved to travel.  Then she went on to say, "Once this passion for living is stirred,
we can all explore our inner romantic fantasies and make these
dreams a reality while exploring our beautiful world."

What passion do you find in your life?
Is it travel or maybe a beautiful flower?
What makes your world more beautiful?

Focusing on the word PASSION this year helps me notice
when others share their PASSION.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Color of Passion

Picture here a photograph of rows of lovely French macarons. 
 The first row holding the deep brown of chocolate.
The second row shining yellow, sweet passion fruit.
The third row is the deep raspberry color of raspberries.
The fourth row holds a soft green, the green you would
see on this first day of spring with the fresh buds and leaves
just beginning to unfurl, it is a pistachio macaron sitting there.

Can you picture it?
Can you imagine the flavor of each?
Do you love French macarons like I do?

This is surely a PASSION
my word this year.

No picture, but what is created in your mind.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Friday, March 16, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day

What thoughts come to mind when you think of St. Patrick's Day?
Little Wee Folk peaking out from behind the flowers
Corned Beef and Cabbage
Green Beer
Irish Soda Bread
Dancing a Jig

How ever you celebrate the day,
make it a special day.
Happy Weekend, dear friends.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Tea Outdoors and Birthday Tea

As I sit here enjoying my first pot of birthday tea this morning I am remembering that
recently on a sunny Sunday afternoon our Portland Wuwo Tea Ceremony group was able to enjoy tea outdoors.
 It seems that once each winter we catch a day such as this and it is pure JOY to share tea together in the sunshine.
 Oh how I wish the sun was shining this morning.
When we begin, part of the ceremony is just setting our teasets out to prepare for our time of tea together
 and admiring each setting members have brought to the day.
On the right you will see Steph of Steph's Cup of Tea.
She has set her place in the traditional manner on the ground.
For some that is difficult and a stool and tray is placed for their pleasure.
The rules are not strict, but sharing tea equally among us is the purpose of the ceremony.

There is structure to this ceremony, but there is also room for small changes.
The important thing is to enjoy tea in the out of doors and to share equally among each one there.
In my cup today is Baozhong Oolong, but my family calls it birthday tea because
it was picked on my children's birthday, May 1st.
I had to enjoy it today because it is my special day.
Do you have a go to tea for celebrating a special event?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Yes, Love!

Heading to Cost Plus a few days ago to spend my $10. coupon
I walked past this on the wall.
It was tucked away on the side of a building, but the message was a delight to see.
Yes, it does remind me of the song, but more than that it reminds me that
the solution to conflict in the world and personally is to show more LOVE.
 How can we survive without loving each other?
Yes, there are differences and different opinions and beliefs;
but LOVE is definitely the answer.
Tolerance and a smile wouldn't hurt either.
Tell someone you love them today.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Outdoor Living

Recently attending Portland's Yard, Garden, and Patio show I noticed a trend in outdoor kitchens.
There was a lovely setting at the show indicating the placement of the kitchen
 near your outdoor kitchen gardens.
It was suggested that canning outdoors could be efficient and pure pleasure.
After seeing these kitchens and garden displays, I tend to agree that cooking outdoors
would be a delight.

In the pink/red canning jars was Pink Pickled Turnips and Pink Pickled Cauliflower and Cabbage.
The recipes come from The Joy of Pickling, by Linda Ziedrich.
Do you make pickles from your garden?
Wouldn't you just love to have an outdoor kitchen near your garden?
I canned when my children were growing up, but haven't for a long time.
Maybe this year is the year I return to making pickles.

Here is the recipe for Pink Pickled Turnips:
(they were oh so pretty)
Makes about 2 quarts
2 pounds small turnips, peeled and quartered
Leafy tops of 2 to 3 celery stalks
4 garlic cloves
1 small beet, peeled and sliced
2 cups white wine vinegar
2 cups water
3 tablespoons pickling salt

Put the turnips, celery leaves, and garlic into a 2-quart jar.
Combine the vinegar and water, and stir in the salt until it dissolves.
Cover the turnips with this liquid.
Cap the jar and let it stand at room temperature for 10 days.
Eat the turnips right away, or refrigerate the jar.
The pickle will keep well in the refrigerator for a month or more.

Monday, March 12, 2012

One Word


A friend recently mentioned a past series I had on my blog
and I started thinking it was time once again for a Monday series.
I was inspired by another blogger, Debi at Emma Tree.
She is celebrating her birthday month by taking a different picture each day
representing a word.  I love words and images and have been joining her on that adventure, as it is my birthday month too.
So a new Monday series starts today.
It will involve one word and a picture that to me represents
that word.  You are welcome to play along and to leave a comment
on the word and image.
I hope you enjoy this adventure into words and images.
Welcome to the new Monday series:  One Word

Friday, March 9, 2012

Souls Blossom's

Let us be grateful to people who make us happy:
They are the charming gardeners
who make our souls blossom.
~Marcel Proust

I have always dreamt of having a Primrose Lane in my yard.
This photo taken at our local garden show recently
reminded me to again dream of Primrose Lane's.
What are you dreaming of for the garden?
Get out this weekend and enjoy seeing what the
beginnings of Spring are bringing to you.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Tea Talk

Sitting with a pot of tea and a friend
creates an atmosphere of well being,
an opportunity to talk, sharing heart songs.
Do you find it so?

Quotes from Haiku for Tea Lovers by David Ash:

on those occasions 
when I ask for marmalade,
there has to be tea

a big pot of tea
is built for companionship
and long afternoons

bringing a teapot
to the tray lends an air of

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


Pink tulips from the market.
Oh how they make my heart sing.


How can one help shivering with delight
when ones hot fingers close around
the stems of a live flower,
cool from the shade and stiff with newborn vigor!
Anonymous Quote

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Transition to Spring

 My heart always sings when March comes around,
as we begin seeing signs of Spring.
A few weeks ago I shared one pink camellia,
they have been slow to bloom.
In looking this yard for red I found the red camellia
wanting to bloom.
There were fresh red sprouts on the rose bushes,
crocus for sure were showing their bright shining faces,
and the miniature daffodils were singing to me.
Soon, very soon the tall daffodils will be shining
followed closely by the tulips.
Yes, this time of year does make my heart sing.
What is making your heart sing this week?

Click on any picture to make larger to see details.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Colors of Europe

 Amsterdam Flower Market

The pictures on my little laptop are several years old,
but for the fun of it I thought I would share colors of Europe.
I am dreaming of colors of Springtime here in my part of the world,
but for now enjoy some colors in Europe taken a few years ago.

Happy Monday, dear friends!
My computer will be back soon and
I will share the colors appearing around me.