September 29, 2014

Urban Oasis is a collection of images of spaces in cities where we can take a few moments to connect with nature, find balance and find peace. Past posts from the series can be found here.
village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city

village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city

village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city


village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city

Urban Oasis is a collection of images of spaces in cities where we can take a few moments to connect with nature, find balance and find peace. Past posts from the series can be found here.
village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city

village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city

village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city


village of yorkville park toronto urban oasis zen city

September 26, 2014

    Quotable is a series of little life lessons that can be taken from quotes. Learn about little ways to improve your life, learn more about yourself and find balance. It is a great place to learn a bit about Dao and Zen, without all the jargon.

quotable life lessons buddah protect your sincerity be true to you evil friend tea balance
   
   There is sadly always a moment in our lives where we realize somone was not as sincere as ourselves.  These people, concisously or not, decive us and use us for their own gain.  It hurts our very core to find out the truth. 
    In todays quotable from Buddha, he teaches us how hurtful these types of people can be. Indirectly he is warning us to be weary of them so that our sincerity is protected from them.

buddah insensere and evil friend wound your mind zen dao china truth tea

  About a month ago I was informed of a few things in the past, that a friend had done. Lies and decitful words were spoken but the truth was not told by them. A true friend would be upfront and share it with you, even if it hurt. They would offer a shoulder to cry on and open their arms up for a large hug.
      The lesson for today is to hold on to your sincerity and be weary of the "wolf" in sheeps clothing. Hold on to your truth because you know who you are, so bee true to you!

    Quotable is a series of little life lessons that can be taken from quotes. Learn about little ways to improve your life, learn more about yourself and find balance. It is a great place to learn a bit about Dao and Zen, without all the jargon.

quotable life lessons buddah protect your sincerity be true to you evil friend tea balance
   
   There is sadly always a moment in our lives where we realize somone was not as sincere as ourselves.  These people, concisously or not, decive us and use us for their own gain.  It hurts our very core to find out the truth. 
    In todays quotable from Buddha, he teaches us how hurtful these types of people can be. Indirectly he is warning us to be weary of them so that our sincerity is protected from them.

buddah insensere and evil friend wound your mind zen dao china truth tea

  About a month ago I was informed of a few things in the past, that a friend had done. Lies and decitful words were spoken but the truth was not told by them. A true friend would be upfront and share it with you, even if it hurt. They would offer a shoulder to cry on and open their arms up for a large hug.
      The lesson for today is to hold on to your sincerity and be weary of the "wolf" in sheeps clothing. Hold on to your truth because you know who you are, so bee true to you!

September 24, 2014

  Welcome to the Digital Table where you are part of a global conversation with tea. Global Tea Hut is a Non-Profit Organization that sends out a sampling of tea, a gift and a special magazine. Everything is brought together by the community to spread the love of tea, Dao and Zen. Join us the last Wednesday of every month to discuss the current packet from Global Tea Hut.

      This series was created because the message from Global Tea Hut touched me. It is of my own creation and I receive nothing from them ,but good karma of spreading their message and cause . All past posts can be found under "Digital Table" here.

Digital table is a series that dives into tea, zen and dao through Global Tea Hut's Monthly subscription. Magazine, gift, Wu De Puerh Teaching Learning

 This months package blew me away! Not only was the issue larger and packed full of information, but this months tea was an old friend. Bing Dao, also known as Ice Island or "King of the Forest". I tried this tea for the first time around this time last year at Tao Tea Leaf. It was like a long lost friend coming to visit after many years apart.
    When trying this tea again after almost a year, it still had a minty side to it on the tongue. The favour is hard to place but it reminds me of a spring that ran into the creek near my Grandfathers home. It had slight earthy notes but also "tasted" of nature.
   
Digital table is a series that dives into tea, zen and dao through Global Tea Hut's Monthly subscription. Magazine, gift, Wu De Puerh Teaching Learning

 On to this months magazine which is packed full of information on Puerh and other goodies. I quite enjoyed learning more about this type of tea , especially the different eras associated. Although I must say I was glad that Wu De included another article stressing the importance of the brewer.
   As I said last week, the condition your mind is in will effect your tea. Wu De took it even further in is article, "The Center of a Tea Session". He used a calligraphy analogy to further  this idea

 ...the student asked the master how to paint the perfect scroll of calligraphy, to which the master responded, "perfect yourself and paint naturally!".

This line shows that your internal self is just as important as how much you practice brewing.  Wu De even suggested that even how you treat people and what you eat can effect the brew. It would be very interesting to try a new diet and see how it effects your tea brewing (because Tea Journey readers are kind and are true to their truth). 

Global Tea Hut is a digital community where tea drinkers enjoy the same tea(s) every month across the world. It is subscription based where all the proceeds go towards a non-profit tea center (Tea Sage Hut) in Taiwan that is open to all. For more information on Global Tea Hut and the center please visit them at:

**All opinions are my own and subscription is paid by me, as a donation to the tea center

  Welcome to the Digital Table where you are part of a global conversation with tea. Global Tea Hut is a Non-Profit Organization that sends out a sampling of tea, a gift and a special magazine. Everything is brought together by the community to spread the love of tea, Dao and Zen. Join us the last Wednesday of every month to discuss the current packet from Global Tea Hut.

      This series was created because the message from Global Tea Hut touched me. It is of my own creation and I receive nothing from them ,but good karma of spreading their message and cause . All past posts can be found under "Digital Table" here.

Digital table is a series that dives into tea, zen and dao through Global Tea Hut's Monthly subscription. Magazine, gift, Wu De Puerh Teaching Learning

 This months package blew me away! Not only was the issue larger and packed full of information, but this months tea was an old friend. Bing Dao, also known as Ice Island or "King of the Forest". I tried this tea for the first time around this time last year at Tao Tea Leaf. It was like a long lost friend coming to visit after many years apart.
    When trying this tea again after almost a year, it still had a minty side to it on the tongue. The favour is hard to place but it reminds me of a spring that ran into the creek near my Grandfathers home. It had slight earthy notes but also "tasted" of nature.
   
Digital table is a series that dives into tea, zen and dao through Global Tea Hut's Monthly subscription. Magazine, gift, Wu De Puerh Teaching Learning

 On to this months magazine which is packed full of information on Puerh and other goodies. I quite enjoyed learning more about this type of tea , especially the different eras associated. Although I must say I was glad that Wu De included another article stressing the importance of the brewer.
   As I said last week, the condition your mind is in will effect your tea. Wu De took it even further in is article, "The Center of a Tea Session". He used a calligraphy analogy to further  this idea

 ...the student asked the master how to paint the perfect scroll of calligraphy, to which the master responded, "perfect yourself and paint naturally!".

This line shows that your internal self is just as important as how much you practice brewing.  Wu De even suggested that even how you treat people and what you eat can effect the brew. It would be very interesting to try a new diet and see how it effects your tea brewing (because Tea Journey readers are kind and are true to their truth). 

Global Tea Hut is a digital community where tea drinkers enjoy the same tea(s) every month across the world. It is subscription based where all the proceeds go towards a non-profit tea center (Tea Sage Hut) in Taiwan that is open to all. For more information on Global Tea Hut and the center please visit them at:

**All opinions are my own and subscription is paid by me, as a donation to the tea center

September 22, 2014

kodo incense benefits and how to enjoy with tea crystals buddha meditation spirituality chaxi global tea hut chado sado japan japanese ceremony

Incense has been a long tradition for many cultures even Japan, where there is a ceremony just for it. For years now incense has been part my meditation time. It was such a blessing to learn about the ceremony that Japan had. Kodo developed slowly after incense was introduced in 538 ad.
   It came over from china and caught on quickly. Over time it was used to scent hair, kimono and even became part of Sado (Japanese Tea Ceremony). It is no surprise that this became its own little ceremony itself.  While I don't have the equipment (yet) for Kodo, lets look at the virtues, or as I call benefits, of incense. 

10 Virtues of Incense

1. Provides a transcendent sense of the exquisite
2. Purges your heart and body
3. Cleanses the unclean
4. Removes sleepiness
5. Mitigates loneliness
6. Comforts you in a busy time
7. Is never obstructive, even in abundance
8. Ample aroma from tiny quantities
9. Will not decay for a long time
10. Harmless even if used every day
    (From the Kyoto Project)


kodo incense benefits and how to enjoy with tea crystals buddha meditation spirituality chaxi global tea hut chado sado japan japanese ceremony chawan chasen

   If you are like me, there are times when you want to take your  tea to a  new level or create a new experience.  Today I created a simple chaxi (tea stage) with crystals, a mini bronze Buddha,  my tools tools for matcha and my incense burner.

   With it burning, I look a few moments to meditate before making my tea. I have mentioned this before but the moment you take time to clear your mind before tea, you will have a much more enjoyable time during the brewing process.
    Try this out before brewing your next cup. Simply create a little "stage" for your tea moment with your incense and see how you feel when you do brew. The change is worth it.

   Today's incense was sent to me by a reader,  KingKoh. Thank you so much for our long talks about tea and helping me further my tea experience. The incense I used was "Sei Fu" by Shoyeido.

Do you burn incense before. during or after brewing your tea?

kodo incense benefits and how to enjoy with tea crystals buddha meditation spirituality chaxi global tea hut chado sado japan japanese ceremony

Incense has been a long tradition for many cultures even Japan, where there is a ceremony just for it. For years now incense has been part my meditation time. It was such a blessing to learn about the ceremony that Japan had. Kodo developed slowly after incense was introduced in 538 ad.
   It came over from china and caught on quickly. Over time it was used to scent hair, kimono and even became part of Sado (Japanese Tea Ceremony). It is no surprise that this became its own little ceremony itself.  While I don't have the equipment (yet) for Kodo, lets look at the virtues, or as I call benefits, of incense. 

10 Virtues of Incense

1. Provides a transcendent sense of the exquisite
2. Purges your heart and body
3. Cleanses the unclean
4. Removes sleepiness
5. Mitigates loneliness
6. Comforts you in a busy time
7. Is never obstructive, even in abundance
8. Ample aroma from tiny quantities
9. Will not decay for a long time
10. Harmless even if used every day
    (From the Kyoto Project)


kodo incense benefits and how to enjoy with tea crystals buddha meditation spirituality chaxi global tea hut chado sado japan japanese ceremony chawan chasen

   If you are like me, there are times when you want to take your  tea to a  new level or create a new experience.  Today I created a simple chaxi (tea stage) with crystals, a mini bronze Buddha,  my tools tools for matcha and my incense burner.

   With it burning, I look a few moments to meditate before making my tea. I have mentioned this before but the moment you take time to clear your mind before tea, you will have a much more enjoyable time during the brewing process.
    Try this out before brewing your next cup. Simply create a little "stage" for your tea moment with your incense and see how you feel when you do brew. The change is worth it.

   Today's incense was sent to me by a reader,  KingKoh. Thank you so much for our long talks about tea and helping me further my tea experience. The incense I used was "Sei Fu" by Shoyeido.

Do you burn incense before. during or after brewing your tea?

September 19, 2014

Global Tea Hut meditative mind Human element of tea tips for improving tea

  At the end of July we were discussing an article in Global Tea Hut. In the post we discussed how tea and water is sensitive to humans. Our very thoughts and feelings can get absorbed in and be reflected back at us or even our guests.

   To demonstrate this for yourself gather up a friend or two and take turns brewing tea. The key to this little task is to use the same type of tea leaves and water. This way the only difference is the brewer themselves.  Have everyone take notes on the taste (and feeling) differences between each brew and share  them once everyone has had a turn.

   Was there one that stood out? Perhaps the one that did was brewed by someone who was having a great day or is typically a positive person. The next step to is pin point the one that was the "least liked" or gave you a weird feeling. How was their day? Perhaps they had a bad day at work and they took it unintentionally into the tea room, or perhaps they are super gossipy (nothing bad with that, we all do it).

   From these little experiments you will have noticed the difference of ones mind and feeling can effect your brew. Here are a few points you may try to improve your tea. Keep your tea practice present in your mind and it will help guide you to what you truly want with your tea.

1. Meditate or take a minute or two to center yourself before brewing
2. Try different waters before hand.  Remember Lu Yu said that Spring Water is desired, but there are ways to improve tap water via types of filters. Try a few out and find out what works for you and your tea.
3. Create a set up that invokes a meditative mind. Add some flower buds in a tea cup or use a flat stone under your pot. Incorporate things that work for you, play around till it feels right.

Keep a meditative mind that is in the present and you will see improvement in your tea. Happy Brewing!

Did you try this experiment? What did you find? Share your experiences below!

Global Tea Hut meditative mind Human element of tea tips for improving tea

  At the end of July we were discussing an article in Global Tea Hut. In the post we discussed how tea and water is sensitive to humans. Our very thoughts and feelings can get absorbed in and be reflected back at us or even our guests.

   To demonstrate this for yourself gather up a friend or two and take turns brewing tea. The key to this little task is to use the same type of tea leaves and water. This way the only difference is the brewer themselves.  Have everyone take notes on the taste (and feeling) differences between each brew and share  them once everyone has had a turn.

   Was there one that stood out? Perhaps the one that did was brewed by someone who was having a great day or is typically a positive person. The next step to is pin point the one that was the "least liked" or gave you a weird feeling. How was their day? Perhaps they had a bad day at work and they took it unintentionally into the tea room, or perhaps they are super gossipy (nothing bad with that, we all do it).

   From these little experiments you will have noticed the difference of ones mind and feeling can effect your brew. Here are a few points you may try to improve your tea. Keep your tea practice present in your mind and it will help guide you to what you truly want with your tea.

1. Meditate or take a minute or two to center yourself before brewing
2. Try different waters before hand.  Remember Lu Yu said that Spring Water is desired, but there are ways to improve tap water via types of filters. Try a few out and find out what works for you and your tea.
3. Create a set up that invokes a meditative mind. Add some flower buds in a tea cup or use a flat stone under your pot. Incorporate things that work for you, play around till it feels right.

Keep a meditative mind that is in the present and you will see improvement in your tea. Happy Brewing!

Did you try this experiment? What did you find? Share your experiences below!

September 17, 2014

    Quotable is a series of little life lessons that can be taken from quotes. Learn about little ways to improve your life, learn more about yourself and find balance. It is a great place to learn a bit about Dao and Zen, without all the jargon.


  Every now and then we need a little pick-me-up mid week. This weeks quote came to me in a Julep Maven box, it was a nice little addition to the box itself. Madonna is a great inspiration to all and more so women.  This quote only makes her a stronger inspiration
   Self-esteem something that we all gain and struggle with as we get older. When I was a child I hated my red hair, pale skin and even my eyes. Over time I learned how unique I am which boosted my own self-esteem. 

madonna quotable i am my own work of art self-esteem motivation inspiration tea journey katherine bellman
   
      This self-love is what I try to inspire in others. Faith in ones own truth , love of ones body and trust in ones own judgement. They are all important to our very being. When we begin to go against them it hurts us inside and out , on many levels. 
   Take a moment today and look at yourself in the mirror, tell yourself you are beautiful. Stay there for a full 1-3 minutes. Do this every day. See the changes that happen. If any negative talk pops up in your head use this line to combat it : " I choose love over this" from the wonderful Gabrielle Bernstein.
     Another little activity you can do, is create a list of all the things you have done over your life. Small to big, it does not matter. I even encourage you to list out achievements such as first apartment, going to a new place, creating a blog etc. There is bound to be a long list, but if you are having trouble talk to friends and family. They will tell you things that ,perhaps, you did not think of.  

   Remember you are beautiful and your own work of art. Keep working on it because your masterpiece is not yet near completion. 

    Quotable is a series of little life lessons that can be taken from quotes. Learn about little ways to improve your life, learn more about yourself and find balance. It is a great place to learn a bit about Dao and Zen, without all the jargon.


  Every now and then we need a little pick-me-up mid week. This weeks quote came to me in a Julep Maven box, it was a nice little addition to the box itself. Madonna is a great inspiration to all and more so women.  This quote only makes her a stronger inspiration
   Self-esteem something that we all gain and struggle with as we get older. When I was a child I hated my red hair, pale skin and even my eyes. Over time I learned how unique I am which boosted my own self-esteem. 

madonna quotable i am my own work of art self-esteem motivation inspiration tea journey katherine bellman
   
      This self-love is what I try to inspire in others. Faith in ones own truth , love of ones body and trust in ones own judgement. They are all important to our very being. When we begin to go against them it hurts us inside and out , on many levels. 
   Take a moment today and look at yourself in the mirror, tell yourself you are beautiful. Stay there for a full 1-3 minutes. Do this every day. See the changes that happen. If any negative talk pops up in your head use this line to combat it : " I choose love over this" from the wonderful Gabrielle Bernstein.
     Another little activity you can do, is create a list of all the things you have done over your life. Small to big, it does not matter. I even encourage you to list out achievements such as first apartment, going to a new place, creating a blog etc. There is bound to be a long list, but if you are having trouble talk to friends and family. They will tell you things that ,perhaps, you did not think of.  

   Remember you are beautiful and your own work of art. Keep working on it because your masterpiece is not yet near completion. 

September 15, 2014

blogpodium 2014 para paints nexus 5 tea journey tea zen blogger conference Minted

  Saturday blew me away, and I am not just talking about the weather. Getting up to catch the bus and train to make it in for Blogpodium was a great time to take a quick nap. Once I arrived at Union it was game time. From the moment I found Blogpodium online a quote from my High School days " When the student is ready the Teacher appears".  Trust me, Blogpodium is one teacher that you should definitely sign up for.
    As a first year attendee I felt like I learned so much in the few hours of the event. TIme flew by and I wish I had lasted just a bit longer. Thankfully blogging is an ever growing medium , with new things to learn everyday.

   5 Things I took away from Blogpodium


Make new friends offline ( and online)

  There was so many people at the conference it was hard to decide where to sit. Luckily for me @nicoleabouttown and @glitterdiaries were friendly enough to let me sit with them. Quickly we were all connecting online (mostly through Twitter and Instagram) and attended the same talks together. We were even joined by @RakheeSapra and @averyswartz
    It is one big happy family of bloggers! The connections did not stop after the event finished. Twitter and Instagram were great tools to find like minded bloggers from all over Canada (represent!). 

Learn from experts in their field

   Information overload! Thank the heavens that we all write for our own blogs. The workshops ranged from content creation such as photography ( with @giuliadoyle),  motivation from Donna Williams  ( @FunkyJunkDonna) , words of wisdom from the keynote panel ( Scott McGillivray , Monika Hibbs and Jennifer Flores), how to start working with brands ( @ akadesigndotca ) and what numbers to show to brands ( @cam_gordon ).  Even now two days after the event processing the information is ongoing but every moment is worth it.

You are not alone (aka. YANA)

Wise words from the Face of Boe (Doctor Who reference), follow them. There are many other bloggers out there in the same place that you are right now or are wise gurus that would love to help you out.  Realizing that this was possible my to-do-list-mid-dump filled the page with in moments last night. 

Continue to grow by trial and error

 May this year I truly took this to heart, I paid for "Blog Life" e-course from A Beautiful Mess. This course helped me branch out and redefine Tea Journey. But then Blogpodium came in and took it to a new level. Last week I won three gallons of Para Paint product, I have never had control over painting projects. Till now of course, I get to try my hand at designing my room as a zen sanctuary! It will be time to ,as said by the wise Mrs. Frizzle from the Magic School Bus, "get messy and make mistakes!".

Think of your blog as a business

 This years main focus was "There are Many Roads to Success" with most talks pointing at seeing yourself as an Entrepreneur. Everything went back to this main topic so that everyone went home with a new mindset for their blog.  A blog can take you to new places and you will be trying new things. Do not be afraid to test any new ideas out. Write that e-book, pitch that segment idea, start writing out that course material and certainly be open to new ideas as they present themselves.

blogpodium 2014 para paints nexus 5 tea journey tea zen blogger conference Minted

  Saturday blew me away, and I am not just talking about the weather. Getting up to catch the bus and train to make it in for Blogpodium was a great time to take a quick nap. Once I arrived at Union it was game time. From the moment I found Blogpodium online a quote from my High School days " When the student is ready the Teacher appears".  Trust me, Blogpodium is one teacher that you should definitely sign up for.
    As a first year attendee I felt like I learned so much in the few hours of the event. TIme flew by and I wish I had lasted just a bit longer. Thankfully blogging is an ever growing medium , with new things to learn everyday.

   5 Things I took away from Blogpodium


Make new friends offline ( and online)

  There was so many people at the conference it was hard to decide where to sit. Luckily for me @nicoleabouttown and @glitterdiaries were friendly enough to let me sit with them. Quickly we were all connecting online (mostly through Twitter and Instagram) and attended the same talks together. We were even joined by @RakheeSapra and @averyswartz
    It is one big happy family of bloggers! The connections did not stop after the event finished. Twitter and Instagram were great tools to find like minded bloggers from all over Canada (represent!). 

Learn from experts in their field

   Information overload! Thank the heavens that we all write for our own blogs. The workshops ranged from content creation such as photography ( with @giuliadoyle),  motivation from Donna Williams  ( @FunkyJunkDonna) , words of wisdom from the keynote panel ( Scott McGillivray , Monika Hibbs and Jennifer Flores), how to start working with brands ( @ akadesigndotca ) and what numbers to show to brands ( @cam_gordon ).  Even now two days after the event processing the information is ongoing but every moment is worth it.

You are not alone (aka. YANA)

Wise words from the Face of Boe (Doctor Who reference), follow them. There are many other bloggers out there in the same place that you are right now or are wise gurus that would love to help you out.  Realizing that this was possible my to-do-list-mid-dump filled the page with in moments last night. 

Continue to grow by trial and error

 May this year I truly took this to heart, I paid for "Blog Life" e-course from A Beautiful Mess. This course helped me branch out and redefine Tea Journey. But then Blogpodium came in and took it to a new level. Last week I won three gallons of Para Paint product, I have never had control over painting projects. Till now of course, I get to try my hand at designing my room as a zen sanctuary! It will be time to ,as said by the wise Mrs. Frizzle from the Magic School Bus, "get messy and make mistakes!".

Think of your blog as a business

 This years main focus was "There are Many Roads to Success" with most talks pointing at seeing yourself as an Entrepreneur. Everything went back to this main topic so that everyone went home with a new mindset for their blog.  A blog can take you to new places and you will be trying new things. Do not be afraid to test any new ideas out. Write that e-book, pitch that segment idea, start writing out that course material and certainly be open to new ideas as they present themselves.

September 12, 2014

  What a day! Preparing for Blogpodium has been my top priority this week with the final thing on my list being touch ups to my "cards". With those done its just packing and trying to stay calm before going to sleep. Speaking of packing I thought Id share what I am packing for my first Blog Conference.


      Shown:Jo Totes Georgina Nautical Camera Bag // Nexus 5 Cell Phone 32Gig // Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1 // Kate Spade Card Holder // J Crew Umbrella // Kate Spade Little Gold Notebook // Portable Charger (similar) // Arbonne Lemon Fit Chews
 Not Shown : Wall Chargers // Playstation Vita Earbuds // Business Cards // Pen // Spare Hair Ties

 What do you have in your bag?

  What a day! Preparing for Blogpodium has been my top priority this week with the final thing on my list being touch ups to my "cards". With those done its just packing and trying to stay calm before going to sleep. Speaking of packing I thought Id share what I am packing for my first Blog Conference.


      Shown:Jo Totes Georgina Nautical Camera Bag // Nexus 5 Cell Phone 32Gig // Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1 // Kate Spade Card Holder // J Crew Umbrella // Kate Spade Little Gold Notebook // Portable Charger (similar) // Arbonne Lemon Fit Chews
 Not Shown : Wall Chargers // Playstation Vita Earbuds // Business Cards // Pen // Spare Hair Ties

 What do you have in your bag?

September 10, 2014

  Next month will be the four year mark of Shuuhei and I being together. This little fur ball helped me through a lot when we first met. Not long after he came home with me I found out that he liked tea. 
  Now I know tea may be on the list of things cat's are not supposed to have, but he snuck some and loved it.
Shuuhei cat tea tea journey katherine bellman

  Shuuhei and I met in Toronto in October 2010, at that time he was "nicknamed" Berney by the shelter. Originally in my mind I was going to take home Isis, a one year old black short hair female, but after she tried to escape when I was allowed to holder her. I became unsure.
   Shortly after I was introduced to Shuuhei and his sister (who I partly wish I had got her as well). His sister walked to the far end of the cage and little Shuuhei came right to me. After quickly asking permission to pick him up he was nuzzling my face in my arms.
    The poor little boy went through a lot there after. There was an electrical fire on the other side of the building (no where near Shuuhei but there was a lot of smoke), he was bumped from one shelter to the next till I was able to find him and bring him home. He had a long visit with my family cat Kiki till I was able to find us both a new home.
  At our new home a few months in (April) there was some flooding in my room and my little champion let me know. By jumping on the water then on to my bed where I was sleeping. We sure got that dealt with quickly.
   Shuuhei now is currently here with me at my parents home. He is a little shy, so he stays mostly under the dining room table or in the front window. He is being very patient with me as I get things together to move out sometime in the new year.  So for now he is enjoying the smell of tea and the freedom to go outside on the porch (when it is quiet).

   Now that you have met Shuuhei, I would love to meet your little loved one! Share links to images and share how you met!

  Next month will be the four year mark of Shuuhei and I being together. This little fur ball helped me through a lot when we first met. Not long after he came home with me I found out that he liked tea. 
  Now I know tea may be on the list of things cat's are not supposed to have, but he snuck some and loved it.
Shuuhei cat tea tea journey katherine bellman

  Shuuhei and I met in Toronto in October 2010, at that time he was "nicknamed" Berney by the shelter. Originally in my mind I was going to take home Isis, a one year old black short hair female, but after she tried to escape when I was allowed to holder her. I became unsure.
   Shortly after I was introduced to Shuuhei and his sister (who I partly wish I had got her as well). His sister walked to the far end of the cage and little Shuuhei came right to me. After quickly asking permission to pick him up he was nuzzling my face in my arms.
    The poor little boy went through a lot there after. There was an electrical fire on the other side of the building (no where near Shuuhei but there was a lot of smoke), he was bumped from one shelter to the next till I was able to find him and bring him home. He had a long visit with my family cat Kiki till I was able to find us both a new home.
  At our new home a few months in (April) there was some flooding in my room and my little champion let me know. By jumping on the water then on to my bed where I was sleeping. We sure got that dealt with quickly.
   Shuuhei now is currently here with me at my parents home. He is a little shy, so he stays mostly under the dining room table or in the front window. He is being very patient with me as I get things together to move out sometime in the new year.  So for now he is enjoying the smell of tea and the freedom to go outside on the porch (when it is quiet).

   Now that you have met Shuuhei, I would love to meet your little loved one! Share links to images and share how you met!

September 8, 2014

      Since High School I have been on a spiritual journey. Most of the time I did not identify it as such but it was there. We are all going through one and they are just as unique as us. They start out magically and grow inside us and foster in reality.  They can be started through simple meditation, yoga class or even attending a Tea Ceremony with a zen teacher.  How ever it starts it will continue to grow and connections will form.  It is a given that at some point you will connect with , what I will call, Pillars of Zen.

zen corner connection tea meditation yoga health wabi sabi universe


  From experience as a child we unknowingly start practicing yoga. There is a large amount of play that happens and we test out our body's ability to balance and bend. Slowly we become
focused on the task and get very involved in discovering new "poses".  It is the focus that is also part of meditation.
   But for meditation it can manifest in another way depending on your lifestyle. I was brought up Roman Catholic and would intently focus on my prayer during mass. Through this experience I believe that any sort of prayer from any religion is a form of meditation. While they each have a differnt form they are all under the umbrella of meditation.
   Where does tea come into this? While I understand that not everyone has the ability to find a tea teacher who also has learned zen, there are other ways to learn from the beverage itself. It does not need to be real tea it can also be an herbal blend. From this we learn to focus on making it. every step has to be attended to. Even if we are just putting on the kettle and pouring the boiled water over a tea bag, it is still a process that is very meditative. If you did not take out the tea bag from its package, fill the kettle and put it on, place the teabag in your cup and pour the boiled water over top. There would be no tea.
       
    If you do not currently see one or more aspects in your life, then perhaps it is time to try them out or take another look. Yoga may not be called by name but you may be doing a series of stretches that are truly yoga poses. The same goes for meditation. Do you try to look inward and tame those pesky voices of the ego on your subway trip home? Then this is also meditation. As for tea, perhaps it is not tea that you drink. It could be juicing in the morning for your green juice, putting together a mix of lemon juice and ginger or even going through the process of making your cup of coffee.
   They key thing is that you are still going through a series of movements to obtain a result. A lovely beverage that calms you and makes you feel good.

Do you see this connection between these pillars?

      Since High School I have been on a spiritual journey. Most of the time I did not identify it as such but it was there. We are all going through one and they are just as unique as us. They start out magically and grow inside us and foster in reality.  They can be started through simple meditation, yoga class or even attending a Tea Ceremony with a zen teacher.  How ever it starts it will continue to grow and connections will form.  It is a given that at some point you will connect with , what I will call, Pillars of Zen.

zen corner connection tea meditation yoga health wabi sabi universe


  From experience as a child we unknowingly start practicing yoga. There is a large amount of play that happens and we test out our body's ability to balance and bend. Slowly we become
focused on the task and get very involved in discovering new "poses".  It is the focus that is also part of meditation.
   But for meditation it can manifest in another way depending on your lifestyle. I was brought up Roman Catholic and would intently focus on my prayer during mass. Through this experience I believe that any sort of prayer from any religion is a form of meditation. While they each have a differnt form they are all under the umbrella of meditation.
   Where does tea come into this? While I understand that not everyone has the ability to find a tea teacher who also has learned zen, there are other ways to learn from the beverage itself. It does not need to be real tea it can also be an herbal blend. From this we learn to focus on making it. every step has to be attended to. Even if we are just putting on the kettle and pouring the boiled water over a tea bag, it is still a process that is very meditative. If you did not take out the tea bag from its package, fill the kettle and put it on, place the teabag in your cup and pour the boiled water over top. There would be no tea.
       
    If you do not currently see one or more aspects in your life, then perhaps it is time to try them out or take another look. Yoga may not be called by name but you may be doing a series of stretches that are truly yoga poses. The same goes for meditation. Do you try to look inward and tame those pesky voices of the ego on your subway trip home? Then this is also meditation. As for tea, perhaps it is not tea that you drink. It could be juicing in the morning for your green juice, putting together a mix of lemon juice and ginger or even going through the process of making your cup of coffee.
   They key thing is that you are still going through a series of movements to obtain a result. A lovely beverage that calms you and makes you feel good.

Do you see this connection between these pillars?

September 5, 2014

After a long fun day with a friend who was getting things in order and reaching his goals, its time to set my own.  School is back in session and it is time to take charge by taking advantage of the moment by getting ahead now. 
 Setting goals should always be simple, for this season I chose three main focus areas and then three items for each. It is important to make sure that they are SMART goals for yourself through out you life.  This way you are always achieving something new and continuing to grow.  So let's jump in!


Blog

1. Apply what I learn at Blog Podium  
      There are many little classes to learn from while in Toronto next week. Out of all of them the two I am looking forward to are on working with brands And photography.

2. Start writing an E-book
     While this may be a long term project that will continue on into next year, its starting it that matters most. I promise you tea is involved ii this project.

3. Write a Plan for the future
   Tea Journey has grown a lot over four years and I am determined to make it grow more before its next aniversary. 

Life and Health

1. Drink 8 cups of water a day
      This is a toughie as I never keep track of how much I am drinking in the first place. Thankfully I purchased  Jawbone Up Band (A Must Have!) and am tracking everything through a partner app, Fitness Pal.

2. Walk Over 10,000 Steps a day
    As it cools down I tend to want to curl up under a warm blanket. So for Fall 2014, I'm saving that luxury for my me Time and getting my legs moving. I got my Jawbone Up Bracelet August 26 and I have averaged this amount, the trouble is keeping it that way.

3. Morning Yoga/Meditation
       Who Does long to Stay in bed just a bit longer? I sure do. My goal is to get in to a morning routine of morning yoga (light and easy) and a session of meditation to set the tone for the day (plus I can follow  "May Cause Miracles" by Gabrielle Bernstein ).


Save for..

1. Laptop or desk top computer
  Currently I am using my brothers laptop (he has not touched it since 2012) that I borrowed. The biggest problem right now is deciding if I really need it to be portable or not. Right now I occasionally take the laptop with me around the house, But I want to think long term ( Will I bring it around an apartment? House?). So right now I am saving, thinking, researching options and deciding. 

2. Friends with Benifits Taylor Rose Gold Head Phones
   Have You Seen These Yet? (See them here) When I Saw them I knew I wanted them, Bonus for me Is that I can talk on the phone with the built in microphone. While this is not a need, I hope to save up and teat myself.

3. Emergency Saving
   When I found myself back In my hometown under my parents roof, I vowed to not make the same mistake twice. Currently I am creating two different versions of this, one with my parents (that will be paid back when i move out) and one in my personal savings account. With both of these I am certain that I will be in a better position should I run into a similar problem in the future.


What goals do you have for this fall? Share in the comments below or send out a tweet.

After a long fun day with a friend who was getting things in order and reaching his goals, its time to set my own.  School is back in session and it is time to take charge by taking advantage of the moment by getting ahead now. 
 Setting goals should always be simple, for this season I chose three main focus areas and then three items for each. It is important to make sure that they are SMART goals for yourself through out you life.  This way you are always achieving something new and continuing to grow.  So let's jump in!


Blog

1. Apply what I learn at Blog Podium  
      There are many little classes to learn from while in Toronto next week. Out of all of them the two I am looking forward to are on working with brands And photography.

2. Start writing an E-book
     While this may be a long term project that will continue on into next year, its starting it that matters most. I promise you tea is involved ii this project.

3. Write a Plan for the future
   Tea Journey has grown a lot over four years and I am determined to make it grow more before its next aniversary. 

Life and Health

1. Drink 8 cups of water a day
      This is a toughie as I never keep track of how much I am drinking in the first place. Thankfully I purchased  Jawbone Up Band (A Must Have!) and am tracking everything through a partner app, Fitness Pal.

2. Walk Over 10,000 Steps a day
    As it cools down I tend to want to curl up under a warm blanket. So for Fall 2014, I'm saving that luxury for my me Time and getting my legs moving. I got my Jawbone Up Bracelet August 26 and I have averaged this amount, the trouble is keeping it that way.

3. Morning Yoga/Meditation
       Who Does long to Stay in bed just a bit longer? I sure do. My goal is to get in to a morning routine of morning yoga (light and easy) and a session of meditation to set the tone for the day (plus I can follow  "May Cause Miracles" by Gabrielle Bernstein ).


Save for..

1. Laptop or desk top computer
  Currently I am using my brothers laptop (he has not touched it since 2012) that I borrowed. The biggest problem right now is deciding if I really need it to be portable or not. Right now I occasionally take the laptop with me around the house, But I want to think long term ( Will I bring it around an apartment? House?). So right now I am saving, thinking, researching options and deciding. 

2. Friends with Benifits Taylor Rose Gold Head Phones
   Have You Seen These Yet? (See them here) When I Saw them I knew I wanted them, Bonus for me Is that I can talk on the phone with the built in microphone. While this is not a need, I hope to save up and teat myself.

3. Emergency Saving
   When I found myself back In my hometown under my parents roof, I vowed to not make the same mistake twice. Currently I am creating two different versions of this, one with my parents (that will be paid back when i move out) and one in my personal savings account. With both of these I am certain that I will be in a better position should I run into a similar problem in the future.


What goals do you have for this fall? Share in the comments below or send out a tweet.

September 3, 2014

 Ah Summer, where have you gone? I hope you enjoyed your summer just as much as I did . To celebrate summer just a little longer so lets hope it stays warm past Thanksgiving (Canadian one of course).  Instagram is great  way to relive those fun moments you want to treasure forever. 
  I have picked out my top picks from my feed in dedication to a great summer. So here is to a fun summer of healthy eating, travel and long walks with friends. 















 Ah Summer, where have you gone? I hope you enjoyed your summer just as much as I did . To celebrate summer just a little longer so lets hope it stays warm past Thanksgiving (Canadian one of course).  Instagram is great  way to relive those fun moments you want to treasure forever. 
  I have picked out my top picks from my feed in dedication to a great summer. So here is to a fun summer of healthy eating, travel and long walks with friends.