Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The ritual of tea.


I'm usually a coffee drinker but when the mood strikes me I can become a bit of a tea fanatic.

Recently I had the pleasure of participating in a tea tasting by T2 at work.  (I know I'm spoilt rotten at my workplace.)  I was so inspired by two of the teas I tasted I did something very unusual for me... I went straight online and bought them both.  Ok so I lie.... It's not that unusual for me.  I truly enjoyed them so much that I had to have them.  The first was an iced tea - a tisane - of strawberry and cream.  I won't talk too much about that now, suffice to say it reminded me very much of my childhood eating strawberry and cream lollies but was amazingly refreshing to drink.

The second tea I fell in love with was a French Earl Grey.  I'm not usually a black tea drinker, but the fragrance of this tea is just so fruity and fresh that I fell in love with it before my first sip.  I've been feeling a little under the weather for a few days with a sore throat and thought that this tea would be just the thing to sooth my throat and warm me up on a cold winters day.

The thing I really love about tea the most is the process of making it, and the implements for serving it.  I love that it takes time to brew.  There is an art form to getting it right. Certain brews don't respond well to scalding.  And leaving the leaves in too long can ruin others.  In other words tea requires thought and care.  I love the idea that you can put effort into it to make it something of a beautiful ritual.  As I said I love the implements of tea too.  I love tea pots and tea cups.  I love dainty old china cups and saucers that have become slightly stained with too much love over the years, as well as modern mugs of bright inspiration.  Today though I was in the mood for something nostalgic and grounded.  I chose this chunky mint green cup which has a weight to it usually only associated with coffee mugs.  It sort of made me feel grounded and solid drinking from it.  (Yes I was having a tea moment).  I love the way it compliments the simple tea pot used.  Something about this whole set up (including the apple) made me feel much more centered and relaxed after the ritual of tea.


Monday, June 6, 2011

The Woo Woo's


I know it's pathetic, but my dogs have nick names.  Depending on the situation they are known as the fur kids, the foo-bahs, the rat-bags, the boo's, the ratty's and most often the woo woos.  Crazy I know but when you see how they respond to ridiculous baby talk and cooing you'd call them silly names too.

Anyway..... the woo woo's is a name that came about from the 'welcome home bark' that they have for us.  It's a different bark from the 'stranger at the door', 'bird in the backyard', 'possum in the tree', 'let me in', 'I'm hungry' barks.  It's a bark that they have perfected.  Sammy in particular throws her whole body into the bark.  And when she's really fired up it's as though it's her sole purpose for living.  This weekend I attempted for the first time to capture it on my camera (I'm sure it won't be my last).

Note how her eyes are completely closed, her back is arched, and she has one foot in the air as if ready to stomp it down to make her point....  All this was in response to 'daddy' holding the whipper snipper.  She's not a fan and was protesting as loud as possible while shuffling backwards in between woo's.

Here's what she looks like when she's not wooing.


Can you see why I love her.  A total ratbag but with a face too cute to resist.