Thursday, May 31, 2018

I am Enough

There are times I wonder if I am doing enough
to make the world a better place.
I ask myself am I enough?
What more can I do?
That word "enough" just sticks in my mind.
Do we have enough?
Do I give enough?
Do I love enough?

And then I came across this quote this week
and it just resonated with me.
Yes, our little bits of good are enough
and all we can do is do our best.

"Do your little bit of good where you are;
it's those little bits of good put together
that overwhelm the world."
~Desmond Tutu

 Pictures were taken when out and about recently.
Sometimes I think just a little cabin in the woods
would be enough.

Update: A nice road trip was had by me and my
"live-in gardener". We are home now and looking forward 
to connecting soon with you again.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

I Spy along the Trail

 Memorial Day was a perfect day to escape for awhile
and go for a walk.
 The weather was just perfect
and the trail was comfortable to stroll and view the sights.
 The gate greeted us at Steigerwalk Lake National Wildlife Refuge
near Washougal, Washington.

 Can you see the turtles shining in the sun on the log?
I went to find the turtles and I did!
I was thrilled.
 There is one turtle in this picture, but hard to see.
 There were magnificent birds too,
but they are so fleeting I couldn't capture with my camera.
Just one tiny black spot sitting on the bridge rail.

 From this view I could see the Columbia River (easy) and the tip of
Mt. Hood (not so easy to see).
It was a meadow for purple martins.
The little white dots on the pole were martin houses.
There were several along the trail.
 At the far end of the trail we came across another gate,
as we turned to head home;
but there was still a bit more to see along the way.
Some metal sculptures along the trail delighted me.
 But this completely caught me by surprise
and I just had to stop and chat awhile.
Two sitting on a bench enjoying the day with tea!
Can you believe I found tea along the trail?
They were drinking a nice Gaba Oolong
steeped in their little pot.
What a perfect way to enjoy the trail
and a beautiful Memorial Day.

 Of course I was watching for flowers too.
There was no disappointment there.
It was a day full of delight!
"In order to see birds it is necessary to become part of the silence."
~Robert Lynd

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Elderflower Cordial

From the garden I took some elderflower heads and a lemon
then mixed them with water, sugar, and honey.
Something delicious happened in my kitchen just this weekend.

Elderflower cordial happened.
I had never tasted elderflower cordial, but quite delicious.
In the glass I mixed the cordial, which was a bit sweet,
with ginger ale and a splash of apple cider vinegar.
I will try it on ice cream, a splash in iced tea,
maybe a sorbet; but the treat will be mine.
Many years ago I was served elderflower fritters,
now I can still remember really loving them too.
Ahhhh! The possibilities for savoring my elderflowers.
The following link is the recipe I used.
What fun to enjoy something from the garden in a different way.
Sipping with JOY. 

PS - I just realized I am not being notified when you comment.
Sorry for not responding or posting them sooner.
I will watch this closer going forward.
Have a good day!

Monday, May 28, 2018

Monday's Tea Quote

Come along inside.....
we'll see if tea and buns can make the world a better place.
  ~from Wind and the Willow

One of my favorite tea quotes.
May we pray for the world to become
"a better place".

In memory of those that have fought
for "a better place".

Friday, May 25, 2018

How Time Flies By

 Spring is just taking my breathe away.
Each year I am more amazed by it's beauty.
After the dark days of winter I rejoice in the color,
in the festivity of it all.
 Above is the elderflowers in my garden right now.
This weekend I hope to do something delicious with it.
 The mountain laurel returns so consistently beautiful each year.
 Allium so briefly is here and then it is gone.
For some reason my "live-in gardener" tucked it in
the garden where I sometimes miss it.
I must go looking and there it is in all it's glory.
 And finally roses!
They are enchanting me right now.
The garden is full of their blooms
and I am in love with them.
Though with the new life of Springtime
I see how fleeting it is.
Life speeds along so quickly.
I want to hold the beauty of Springtime in my arms,
embrace it, and tell it to stay awhile.

Step out this weekend and savor every moment of Springtime,
dear friends!!!
Create memories of the beauty in your mind for those dark
nights of winter.
Happy weekend, dear friends!

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Tea Time in the Gardenhouse

 Tea time in the Gardenhouse just yesterday.
Ready, Set, Go
My live-in gardener even pitched in to help.
 The food was ready.
Calla lily sandwich
Smoked salmon with cream on an endive leaf
Egg salad sandwich
Coronation chicken on croissant
Cucumber sandwich
Cream Scones with marmalade

 Several tea friends always miss out on tea festivities
because they work on the weekend;
so a party was planned in the middle of the week.
What fun we had talking tea and nibbling.
 There were cupcakes
Lemon tarts with a raspberry
Chocolate dipped strawberries
Lemon shortcake cookies
And there was tea.
We started with Castleton Moonlight Imperial Darjeeling, 2018 first flush.
Then moved to an old growth Darjeeling that is not available to the public.
And we topped it off with Black Magnolia from The Mississippi Tea Company, also rather dear and difficult to acquire.

What fun to serve connoisseurs of tea to a special afternoon tea.
We may sip tea together, but this was a first for us
to enjoy afternoon tea with all the food.

Find time to savor friendship even in the middle of the week.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

A bit of tea, here and there

 This morning as I sat on my back steps savoring nature in the early
morning with a cup of tea in hand I was reminiscing about a
 past trip to visit Taiwan tea farms.
In my cup was the end of the tea I had brought home,
a 27 year old Buddha Hand Oolong.
Then my mind turned to the past week with tea.
 There was a tea party at a retirement center near Portland
where I was the guest speaker.
Not my usual thing to do and I had never talked to
a group in a retirement center.
 Not sure I did very well, but I told myself if nothing
else "it was good for me". 
It looks like I was singing here, but nope I was just talking
about tea and the history of tea in England.
 And then as I shared yesterday another picture from tea by the river.
This past weekend was time by this river and a few moments of
solitude with a cup of tea.
Probably my favorite time with tea.
 Then yesterday a small group of women friends met out in nature
for a potluck, friendship, and a sip of tea.
The view and the day were spectacular.

 The flowers were blooming and though you can't see it, as the clouds
parted we saw three volcanic mountains in the distance.
If I count sipping tea on my back steps there were
four very different experiences with tea.
Each one touched my soul and delighted my heart.
Eventhough I love sipping many different teas and
in many different cups, 
It is the experience of the tea that most enchants and delights me.

Linking to Bernideen at

Monday, May 21, 2018

Monday's Tea Quote

The sun, Lord of the East, grinds the fragrant dust of tea.
Bejeweled nectar on the teeth, revives me.
A pure wind envelopes my body.
The whole world seen in a single cup.
~Kohan, translated by V. Dixon Morris

Yes, this was a single cup of tea while sitting in
reflection along the river just yesterday.
The sun warm on my skin.
The silence and time alone quite beautiful. 
Have a good week, dear friends!

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Rest and Be Thankful

 Morning shots in my garden.
Did you rise early this morning to watch the Royal Wedding?
Were there scones and tea?
Now time to rest, dear ones!

"Rest and be Thankful"
~William Wordsworth

Have a restful weekend.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Black Magnolia Tea

 Strolling down a country trail on a sultry day in late spring.
Smelling the grass as it bakes in the sun.
 The tea in my cup reminds me of a smooth summer day.
A day to languish by the river,
letting it flow gently down my throat.
 By no means is it bitter.

A light flavor until it hits the back of the throat
and then it sits there, light caramel/fruity, not sweet but romantic.
 Do you ever have this romance with a cup of tea?
Does it tingle in your thoughts like a sultry day in late spring?
 Do you just want to savor the day?
Well Black Magnolia Oolong Tea from The Great Mississippi Tea Co.
is such a tea. I have waited a long time to be able to savor this tea
and savoring it I am doing.
On the package from The Cultured Cup in Dallas, Texas,
it says "This hand-plucked tea is complex with notes of apricot,
honeysuckle & honey." "The best USA grown tea!"
I would agree!
How exciting to finally get my hands and then my taste buds
on this special cup of tea.
Good job to the growers at The Great Mississippi Tea Company.

Linking to Bernideen: