Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Tea Traditions

Sometimes all you need is a cup of  tea. Tea brings comfort, that element of warmth. Tea slipping down my throat is like a blanket warming me up from inside. Add some candles, a fireplace, or better yet - a lit Christmas tree, and I am one happy girl.
Recently, I was feeling a lot of pressure at work and was feeling particularly drained and stressed. I know more than one of my friends is going to laugh at me when they read this, but instead of having a glass of wine, I had tea (thanks to Husband, who convinced me). And guess what? It totally worked! For the rest of the week, I was content to warm my hands around a hot mug, curled up on the couch, letting the steam of the tea wash over my face as I inhaled the scent of melted honey mixed with chamomile.
Celestial Seasonings Honey Vanilla Chamomile is my go-to herbal tea in the evening. Don't worry, come Friday, though, guess what I was kicking back? ;)
Since I'm inspired to write about tea, I might as well tell you how I drink my tea. I am very particular about what mugs I drink my tea out of. It has to be the perfect size, and the perfect shape. I like to brew loose tea,  Earl Grey is my absolute favorite - and most of the time I brew in the mug I'm drinking from. Recently, a member of our community died, and her family had an estate sale. I bought one of her individual brewing nets, and I think of her every time I brew using it. I love having things that have history!
When I turned 16, my mother gave me my first bone china teacup. She had been collecting fine bone china teacups for years, and this was a rite of passage. I treasure my cups, and every year, my mother would give me another one. My sister also added to my collection when I got married.
 Each cup tells a story; it doesn't do to give just any fine bone china cup. It has to speak to you, or speak of the person you're buying for. It also has to come at the right price, I suppose, but if one speaks loudly enough, you buy it no matter what. A cup I gave to my sister comes to mind - she's an artist who specializes in watercolors, so when I saw a cup with a watercolor palette and brushes, how could I not snatch it up?

Since I love tea brewed from loose teas the most, my tea cup collection has expanded to tea pots for brewing tea.

The designs range from the classic floral to strawberries, butterflies, even a parrot shaped one (which I was given, and keep only as a conversation piece).

All of these are part of me; they tell part of my story, describe who I am, what I love. And the best part, most of the cups were gifts: it tells of those who love me, and know me well enough to know what I love. The cups spoke to them...and they heard.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Juicing - a detox after New Year's Eve

Red Apple

The mint didn't do well in my Breville fountain plus. I either have to use the whole bunch next time or upgrade to a higher grade juicer...

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Some more juicing adventures

I love beets!


Don't be afraid of the ginger. I read in many places that a little bit of ginger goes a long way,  but the amount (lying on top of the beets) I put in this juice wasn't enough.

I tried to make a green juice without a recipe...
Don't forget the laws of color: Orange and green make a brown. Think balanced. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Juicing Adventure

One bunch of cilantro
1 cup of sinach
2 leaves of kale
2 wedges pineapple
1/2 a lime

I finally decided what to buy with a gift card I received at work over the summer: a Breville fountain plus juicer. Thank you cyber monday for $100 off - now let the fun begin!
Recipe credit to the *free* kindle book,  Breville Health Full Life:


Sunday, May 26, 2013

"Fishe Water"

Daughter came home with a mothers day poster she made for me at school. I was pretty excited until I read the second item on the list, which was supposed to be about me.

Fishe water?! Why is fishy water on the list to describe me?! Daughter: oh, that's us swimming at the beach.
Yup.  It's always interesting around here. :)

Monday, April 15, 2013

Reading Corner: The War of the Wooden Soldiers

I bought a 1933 edition of a book called The War of the Wooden Soldiers on eBay. It caught my eye because Baby is obsessed with soldiers and knights and pirates. It is difficult to interest him in books; the same books about animals that interested Son and Daughter don't really light the fire for Baby. Part of me felt guilty; perhaps it's because I don't get to read to him as often as I read to the others. Perhaps it's because when I do read, I read something at the level and interest of the older children. I realized it was just a matter of interest when, one night, I grabbed a book on ancient castles (for a much older audience of 8-11) and Baby sat riveted through the entire time I sat reading excerpts from the book. I hoped that Baby would enjoy this eBay find, and boy, was I right! I had to read the book twice in a row, then the kids took it upstairs and Manya read it one more time before bed. I love how the books of that time we written at two different levels. More wordy for the advanced reader on one side, and a short sentence with a nice illustration on the other for the beginning or non-reader.
Note: this was written back in April, and the book is just as popular now as it was then.

Friday, April 5, 2013

My Favorite Mispronunciations

There are always those favorite "baby words" our kids say, and although I try to model correct pronunciations of words as my kids are learning to talk, there are a few things that I don't correct because I just love them and I want to prolong the mistake as long as possible.

I *love* how Daughter says липчик instead of лифчик....I guess that would be something like "pra" instead of "bra."  Just the other day, I was driving Daughter and her friend, and somehow the conversation went to липчики (bras) and her friend asked her what that was. It was hilarious to listen to the random words floating up to me from the back row: ты знаеш....твои груди...майка.... (you know...your breasts...shirt) so funny. I also loved her Russian accent when she was starting to learn English.

I love how Baby says his name: АлЁса instead of Алёшa. It melts my heart every time. I love how he says Ипа instead of Кипа, and how his little tongue sticks out as he "ths" words.