August 18, 2014

Opening up to publicly "let people" in is scary, but I believe in my own strength to do it. This list of 10 things you do not know about me is for you all. Who am I? What quirky things do I like or do? 
   I want to open up and let you know me. Let's be friends and give ourselves the freedom to talk about who we are. So here is some little things I do, have done etc so you can get a better idea of who I am. Some are crazy and others may be normal to you, but makes me super nervous to share (I have butterflies in my stomach right now!). This is from me to you. Namaste.


1. Love anime and manga
     Is there a certain kind I like? No idea. But I do adore any show that has super natural creatures or a cute couple that slowly come together. It just makes me feel like a kid , especially if I happen to be watching say Sailor Moon (by the way there is a re-launch of the anime that started in July, super crushing the creators right now!)

2.One of my best friends is my brother
      Being the oldest was "interesting" when I was a child. Who was this little boy that came into my life and stole my toys? He is my little brother who I am proud to say is my best friend. Being just a year apart helped with that (and liking geeky things together). My favorite thing to do during the week is chill with him at a cafe or laugh uncontrollably while watching Seananners on Youtube (YouTube gamer who has an addicting laugh).

3.Started to read self-help books at age 26
   I never understood why I was "scared" of the self-help section (maybe I watched Sex and the City too much... Charolet you should have just bought that book!). But. When I really needed help, I just went for it. Now I am addicted to a few writers (Gabrielle Bernstein, she's my go-to girl with Marie Forleo) and can not put the books down.

4.Developed my interest in Social Justice in High school
     Amnesty International. Give: Water. Fair Trade. These are a few of the efforts I supported through High School. They were fun and rewarding (nice warm feeling inside). They also opened my eyes to things that were going on in the world and kept me motivated to stay informed. There is nothing better than knowing that you are doing something for a good cause and helping someone that needs it.

5.Went to Catholic school
    Everyday while I was part of the Catholic school system but I was surprised by the difference between it and the public schools. It is hard to explain but I am glad that I grew up in such a school system. With out it I would not have got as involved with Social Justice  as I did there.
   My views have changed I no longer follow the religion but I do respect it and others who do. An acceptance grew in me that I am grateful for having.

6.Was on student Council in High School
    Applying to be in the is class was scary. But I had fun answering "How would you plan out our next school event?" where I went into detail and steps. When I got there it was the best homeroom class ever! What can I say? I just love to plan out events and get them right.

7. Was on a Dance and Cheer team prior to High School
    Although the only dance I remember was to "C'est La vie" by B*Witched, I remember embarrassing dance routines of the late 90s. Overall it was a great chance to become close friends to my classmates and dance my heart out (I still do in my room till my Cat objects).  It was great exercise and I have it on my list to do again.

8.Quarter Indonesian
   Lie? Nope. There is no way to tell by looking at me. But. When I was a child my mother would come to pick me up from school and occasionally (more often than you think). Be not allowed to take me. She tans easily (no tanning bed for her) and we did not look like mother and daughter. Look at me I am pale and I do not tan at all. My favorite food is Nasi Goreng, a delicious rice dish that is a meal in itself (when done right or I make it). I am proud of my background and I am not afraid to show it!

9. Not a party girl
   While many my age are partying or have in their 20s, I much rather going for a light dinner or watching a movie in my apartment. Its cozy and I get to spend time with a small group of friends (usually 1-2) or have me time. Shuuhei (My cat) would not approve of me being a party girl anyhow, he likes to playfully attack me when I dance. Truthfully, its just not me.

10. Love the smell of fresh books 
     Walking into a book store and picking up a new book. What do I do right after? I open it up to smell the freshly printed pages. Weird? Not to me. I love the smell and flipping through books. They are so sexy. Maybe they are my new boyfriend?


      Feel free to join in by posting in the comments or linking to your own post of "Things you don't know about me".  Open up, be authentic and true to yourself.

Opening up to publicly "let people" in is scary, but I believe in my own strength to do it. This list of 10 things you do not know about me is for you all. Who am I? What quirky things do I like or do? 
   I want to open up and let you know me. Let's be friends and give ourselves the freedom to talk about who we are. So here is some little things I do, have done etc so you can get a better idea of who I am. Some are crazy and others may be normal to you, but makes me super nervous to share (I have butterflies in my stomach right now!). This is from me to you. Namaste.


1. Love anime and manga
     Is there a certain kind I like? No idea. But I do adore any show that has super natural creatures or a cute couple that slowly come together. It just makes me feel like a kid , especially if I happen to be watching say Sailor Moon (by the way there is a re-launch of the anime that started in July, super crushing the creators right now!)

2.One of my best friends is my brother
      Being the oldest was "interesting" when I was a child. Who was this little boy that came into my life and stole my toys? He is my little brother who I am proud to say is my best friend. Being just a year apart helped with that (and liking geeky things together). My favorite thing to do during the week is chill with him at a cafe or laugh uncontrollably while watching Seananners on Youtube (YouTube gamer who has an addicting laugh).

3.Started to read self-help books at age 26
   I never understood why I was "scared" of the self-help section (maybe I watched Sex and the City too much... Charolet you should have just bought that book!). But. When I really needed help, I just went for it. Now I am addicted to a few writers (Gabrielle Bernstein, she's my go-to girl with Marie Forleo) and can not put the books down.

4.Developed my interest in Social Justice in High school
     Amnesty International. Give: Water. Fair Trade. These are a few of the efforts I supported through High School. They were fun and rewarding (nice warm feeling inside). They also opened my eyes to things that were going on in the world and kept me motivated to stay informed. There is nothing better than knowing that you are doing something for a good cause and helping someone that needs it.

5.Went to Catholic school
    Everyday while I was part of the Catholic school system but I was surprised by the difference between it and the public schools. It is hard to explain but I am glad that I grew up in such a school system. With out it I would not have got as involved with Social Justice  as I did there.
   My views have changed I no longer follow the religion but I do respect it and others who do. An acceptance grew in me that I am grateful for having.

6.Was on student Council in High School
    Applying to be in the is class was scary. But I had fun answering "How would you plan out our next school event?" where I went into detail and steps. When I got there it was the best homeroom class ever! What can I say? I just love to plan out events and get them right.

7. Was on a Dance and Cheer team prior to High School
    Although the only dance I remember was to "C'est La vie" by B*Witched, I remember embarrassing dance routines of the late 90s. Overall it was a great chance to become close friends to my classmates and dance my heart out (I still do in my room till my Cat objects).  It was great exercise and I have it on my list to do again.

8.Quarter Indonesian
   Lie? Nope. There is no way to tell by looking at me. But. When I was a child my mother would come to pick me up from school and occasionally (more often than you think). Be not allowed to take me. She tans easily (no tanning bed for her) and we did not look like mother and daughter. Look at me I am pale and I do not tan at all. My favorite food is Nasi Goreng, a delicious rice dish that is a meal in itself (when done right or I make it). I am proud of my background and I am not afraid to show it!

9. Not a party girl
   While many my age are partying or have in their 20s, I much rather going for a light dinner or watching a movie in my apartment. Its cozy and I get to spend time with a small group of friends (usually 1-2) or have me time. Shuuhei (My cat) would not approve of me being a party girl anyhow, he likes to playfully attack me when I dance. Truthfully, its just not me.

10. Love the smell of fresh books 
     Walking into a book store and picking up a new book. What do I do right after? I open it up to smell the freshly printed pages. Weird? Not to me. I love the smell and flipping through books. They are so sexy. Maybe they are my new boyfriend?


      Feel free to join in by posting in the comments or linking to your own post of "Things you don't know about me".  Open up, be authentic and true to yourself.

August 15, 2014


There was an itch throughout my body but once I clicked that last button it was gone. It was final. No way out. Paid and done. Monday August 4th was a holiday here, but that still meant work had to be done.  For me it meant getting to a sale before it ended, what girl can pass up a sale?
    Blog Podium 2014 , it was finally mine ( a seat I mean). It was a blessing that such an event exists in Toronto once a year. Blog Podium is for Design and lifestyle bloggers to come together. To learn. To grow. To connect. Then most of all create lasting friendships with other bloggers.

 
There is so much to do before the event, it is a little over whelming. Thankfully I was able to schedule my day for the event through the website. (Full day with all options can be seen here.)

Key talks I am attending:

  •  Tabletop Photography- Object and Food Styling by Giulia Doyle
  •  Bloggers and Brands  by Mara Shapiro (Brazenwoman.com) and Shannoon Acheson (AKA Design)
  • The Entrepreneur Mindset: Finding Success Online and Offline by Scott McGilivray, Monika Hibbs and Jennifer Flores
  • Bloggers and PR Workshop II
  While I look forward to all of these talks and my appointment with Nerd Station for a consultation by Camp Tech. There is so much to do before even waking up that day. Being new to Blog Conferences I am a little nervous but super eager to make the right impression. How am I going to do that? First be myself, but here is some other things that are on my list.

The To-do list: 

  • Pick the right outfit (why not be cute and comfortable)
  • Print new business cards ( Gotta share my new logo!)
  • Get to know other bloggers who are attending ( Tweet me girl! )
  • Decide what is going in my gear bag (and match to outfit)
September is quickly approaching. Preparing is just the first step, next is actually putting my plans into action. So lets get started!


There was an itch throughout my body but once I clicked that last button it was gone. It was final. No way out. Paid and done. Monday August 4th was a holiday here, but that still meant work had to be done.  For me it meant getting to a sale before it ended, what girl can pass up a sale?
    Blog Podium 2014 , it was finally mine ( a seat I mean). It was a blessing that such an event exists in Toronto once a year. Blog Podium is for Design and lifestyle bloggers to come together. To learn. To grow. To connect. Then most of all create lasting friendships with other bloggers.

 
There is so much to do before the event, it is a little over whelming. Thankfully I was able to schedule my day for the event through the website. (Full day with all options can be seen here.)

Key talks I am attending:

  •  Tabletop Photography- Object and Food Styling by Giulia Doyle
  •  Bloggers and Brands  by Mara Shapiro (Brazenwoman.com) and Shannoon Acheson (AKA Design)
  • The Entrepreneur Mindset: Finding Success Online and Offline by Scott McGilivray, Monika Hibbs and Jennifer Flores
  • Bloggers and PR Workshop II
  While I look forward to all of these talks and my appointment with Nerd Station for a consultation by Camp Tech. There is so much to do before even waking up that day. Being new to Blog Conferences I am a little nervous but super eager to make the right impression. How am I going to do that? First be myself, but here is some other things that are on my list.

The To-do list: 

  • Pick the right outfit (why not be cute and comfortable)
  • Print new business cards ( Gotta share my new logo!)
  • Get to know other bloggers who are attending ( Tweet me girl! )
  • Decide what is going in my gear bag (and match to outfit)
September is quickly approaching. Preparing is just the first step, next is actually putting my plans into action. So lets get started!

August 13, 2014

  When life throws you a lemon, wouldn't it be nice to have somewhere to go to pick you back up? Starting a gratitude journal can be that very thing to tip your day back into better and then good. I personally thought that this type of journal was well..lame, but that was before I did some research and tried it. 
      What the process does, is it takes all the good and it exists in one place. No negativity can go into this journal.  After becoming jobless and making a decision on who I want in my life, I was bombarded by old thoughts. "You can't do anything without them", "You won't get a job", "Why are they going to hire you?", "You need them", "what makes you think that you can be an entreperur?" And "no one is there for you without them".  



       It was a tough spot to be in, but when I decided to start my gratitude journal they began to dissipate. Hell , I can do what I want. I am a loving person and thats the type of people I want in my life. If I want to create my own job, I am going to do it. There is nothing that can stop me but myself, if I had let it.
   Back to the Journal.  The first entry was the following:
            I am grateful for the friends I haveI am greatful for my blog readers.  I am content with my life and wish to grow more as a person.  I am greatful for family. I am greatful for my boyfriend.  I am grateful for my path and where it has taken me.
Writing in a gratitude journal is just that simple. Abandon the stress of spelling right, getting grammar spot on and creating paragraphs that flow. It is your space and that is all there is to it.



Start your own gratitude journal

Buy a Journal
 Pick one that feels special. Mine is embroidered and from Christian Lacroix paper line (gift from mom). Alternatively you can go the digital route. Fire up a blog and set it to private (or not). Or even  use the memo app on your phone.

Decide how often you will write
Writing once a week is enough. but I have heard other writers using it every night. Personally I use it when I am in the right mind space, but is also going to become space for post-meditation free writing. Remember a journal is YOUR space, do what feels right.

What to write
What are you grateful for? Write it out and bring the gratefulness inside you out. If you want to add something extra, goals are a great addition.
    In addition to my 3-5 things I am grateful for. I strive to write a few goals for myself.

Rules of Gratitude Journals
  • Read it when you are down to lift you back up
  • Write at least 3-5 things
  • Be specific
  • Turn negatives into positives
  • Don't go through the motions. Make a decision to be consistently more grateful.
  • Don't wait for the right time
  • Think people, no things
  • Don't rush, savour every word

  When life throws you a lemon, wouldn't it be nice to have somewhere to go to pick you back up? Starting a gratitude journal can be that very thing to tip your day back into better and then good. I personally thought that this type of journal was well..lame, but that was before I did some research and tried it. 
      What the process does, is it takes all the good and it exists in one place. No negativity can go into this journal.  After becoming jobless and making a decision on who I want in my life, I was bombarded by old thoughts. "You can't do anything without them", "You won't get a job", "Why are they going to hire you?", "You need them", "what makes you think that you can be an entreperur?" And "no one is there for you without them".  



       It was a tough spot to be in, but when I decided to start my gratitude journal they began to dissipate. Hell , I can do what I want. I am a loving person and thats the type of people I want in my life. If I want to create my own job, I am going to do it. There is nothing that can stop me but myself, if I had let it.
   Back to the Journal.  The first entry was the following:
            I am grateful for the friends I haveI am greatful for my blog readers.  I am content with my life and wish to grow more as a person.  I am greatful for family. I am greatful for my boyfriend.  I am grateful for my path and where it has taken me.
Writing in a gratitude journal is just that simple. Abandon the stress of spelling right, getting grammar spot on and creating paragraphs that flow. It is your space and that is all there is to it.



Start your own gratitude journal

Buy a Journal
 Pick one that feels special. Mine is embroidered and from Christian Lacroix paper line (gift from mom). Alternatively you can go the digital route. Fire up a blog and set it to private (or not). Or even  use the memo app on your phone.

Decide how often you will write
Writing once a week is enough. but I have heard other writers using it every night. Personally I use it when I am in the right mind space, but is also going to become space for post-meditation free writing. Remember a journal is YOUR space, do what feels right.

What to write
What are you grateful for? Write it out and bring the gratefulness inside you out. If you want to add something extra, goals are a great addition.
    In addition to my 3-5 things I am grateful for. I strive to write a few goals for myself.

Rules of Gratitude Journals
  • Read it when you are down to lift you back up
  • Write at least 3-5 things
  • Be specific
  • Turn negatives into positives
  • Don't go through the motions. Make a decision to be consistently more grateful.
  • Don't wait for the right time
  • Think people, no things
  • Don't rush, savour every word

August 11, 2014


   Finding the right thing to post is hard, especially since there is no "right" thing. Funny right? Today was especially hard, I started like three other posts and eventually decided this was the one to share.
   The quote was found on a cup sleeve from Starbucks and it touched my so I kept it. I have it posted right next to where I am writing right now.
    It may be simple but to do it it does take courage. You need to those negative thoughts where they belong (in the trash aka. Banish those baddies). Take the comments from others with a grain of salt ,especially when they are along the line of you old negative thoughts (if they are then again, put. them. in. the. trash.). Then there are just life roadblocks. It makes us want to scream!
    but, if you are doing what you want then you will still be happy and that is what counts. Don't sweat the small stuff and live how you want to live! or take steps to create it.
     My small steps have been working here at Tea Journey, getting my portfolio website up and going, working with a designer to get them all sparkly and new and working on my Entrepreneurship class. The last is the hardest.  But working towards doing something I LOVE full time is my dream.
   
  What scary thing are you working on or towards that you are building up the courage to do?


   Finding the right thing to post is hard, especially since there is no "right" thing. Funny right? Today was especially hard, I started like three other posts and eventually decided this was the one to share.
   The quote was found on a cup sleeve from Starbucks and it touched my so I kept it. I have it posted right next to where I am writing right now.
    It may be simple but to do it it does take courage. You need to those negative thoughts where they belong (in the trash aka. Banish those baddies). Take the comments from others with a grain of salt ,especially when they are along the line of you old negative thoughts (if they are then again, put. them. in. the. trash.). Then there are just life roadblocks. It makes us want to scream!
    but, if you are doing what you want then you will still be happy and that is what counts. Don't sweat the small stuff and live how you want to live! or take steps to create it.
     My small steps have been working here at Tea Journey, getting my portfolio website up and going, working with a designer to get them all sparkly and new and working on my Entrepreneurship class. The last is the hardest.  But working towards doing something I LOVE full time is my dream.
   
  What scary thing are you working on or towards that you are building up the courage to do?

August 8, 2014

Since High School I have always loved Social Justice and as I got older I now LOVE Social Businesses. Justea located in Vancouver, Canada is one that just touched my heart (much like Global Tea Hut). By helping farmers be self sufficient , create a business of their own and support themselves. My favorite part is the farmers end up with a better wage when they learn how to cut out the middle man. Better wages = better support for their families.


  Farmers traditionally would grow and pick the tea themselves, before bringing it to the factory to become tea bags. Because the unfinished product is not worth the same as the tea bags, the farmers get little for their work.  The big change is what Justea is doing to change that old model. By teaching the farmers how to process the tea themselves, the farmers now obtain earnings for a finished product!

   
"...Key to any social business is informing the public of the problem you are trying to address." -Justea, Blog post Karibu (Welcome!)


African Chai was smooth,with sweet notes with a light clove-ginger bite. I drank this after dry brushing and moisturizing, it was the right tea to have for that moment. I was particularly pleased that I did not need anything in it , unlike other chai blends. 


Kenyan Black was very smooth with no astringency and a "baked bread" taste. It was very enjoyable morning tea to have before meditation (or for me it was the Global Meditation for Peace). With an empty stomach you would think that black tea would be too much, but instead it was very soothing. Waking up to this tea was a real treat.

Supporting the community
Is very important to me, it not only spreads happiness but also peace. Justea is a social business that I hope continues to grow as the years go on. I really enjoyed these teas and can not wait to try new ones.

Since High School I have always loved Social Justice and as I got older I now LOVE Social Businesses. Justea located in Vancouver, Canada is one that just touched my heart (much like Global Tea Hut). By helping farmers be self sufficient , create a business of their own and support themselves. My favorite part is the farmers end up with a better wage when they learn how to cut out the middle man. Better wages = better support for their families.


  Farmers traditionally would grow and pick the tea themselves, before bringing it to the factory to become tea bags. Because the unfinished product is not worth the same as the tea bags, the farmers get little for their work.  The big change is what Justea is doing to change that old model. By teaching the farmers how to process the tea themselves, the farmers now obtain earnings for a finished product!

   
"...Key to any social business is informing the public of the problem you are trying to address." -Justea, Blog post Karibu (Welcome!)


African Chai was smooth,with sweet notes with a light clove-ginger bite. I drank this after dry brushing and moisturizing, it was the right tea to have for that moment. I was particularly pleased that I did not need anything in it , unlike other chai blends. 


Kenyan Black was very smooth with no astringency and a "baked bread" taste. It was very enjoyable morning tea to have before meditation (or for me it was the Global Meditation for Peace). With an empty stomach you would think that black tea would be too much, but instead it was very soothing. Waking up to this tea was a real treat.

Supporting the community
Is very important to me, it not only spreads happiness but also peace. Justea is a social business that I hope continues to grow as the years go on. I really enjoyed these teas and can not wait to try new ones.

August 6, 2014

   Over the last few months  I have been reading Yoga Journal Magazine as it is such an inspiring little gem. Early July while flipping through I noticed a little advertisement that hit home for me. Deepak Chopra, a spiritual Entrepreneur, was hosting a Global Meditation for Peace in Toronto. And online. The very thought of bringing together possibly millions of people for one cause reminded me of the Lole White event I attended in June. The White event was so moving it was hard not to have a little tear in your eye and a huge smile on your face. 

#Iampeace

    I believe that this meditation will bring about the same kind of connectedness that everyone felt during Lole White, no matter where they were. I am sharing the information for this event as I believe that it will help you develop a stronger connectedness with those around you , the earth and with your tea. Last week we went over how a meditative mind effects our tea and water. The very act of learning or trying to meditate helps develop a deeper connection with yourself, the universe and things around you (this includes tea). If you have been following my Digital table series for Global Tea Hut, or have subscribed, I highly suggest that you sign up and join in. 
  On a side note, this event is also an attempt at setting the world record for collective meditation. Below is a video explaining more about the event itself.
Namaste, let me know if you sign up and, after, how you feel in the comments below.



Organized by  The Chopra Center
Special guests include Deepak, Chopra, Gabrielle Bernstein, and  India Arie.
#Iampeace

   Over the last few months  I have been reading Yoga Journal Magazine as it is such an inspiring little gem. Early July while flipping through I noticed a little advertisement that hit home for me. Deepak Chopra, a spiritual Entrepreneur, was hosting a Global Meditation for Peace in Toronto. And online. The very thought of bringing together possibly millions of people for one cause reminded me of the Lole White event I attended in June. The White event was so moving it was hard not to have a little tear in your eye and a huge smile on your face. 

#Iampeace

    I believe that this meditation will bring about the same kind of connectedness that everyone felt during Lole White, no matter where they were. I am sharing the information for this event as I believe that it will help you develop a stronger connectedness with those around you , the earth and with your tea. Last week we went over how a meditative mind effects our tea and water. The very act of learning or trying to meditate helps develop a deeper connection with yourself, the universe and things around you (this includes tea). If you have been following my Digital table series for Global Tea Hut, or have subscribed, I highly suggest that you sign up and join in. 
  On a side note, this event is also an attempt at setting the world record for collective meditation. Below is a video explaining more about the event itself.
Namaste, let me know if you sign up and, after, how you feel in the comments below.



Organized by  The Chopra Center
Special guests include Deepak, Chopra, Gabrielle Bernstein, and  India Arie.
#Iampeace

August 4, 2014


 Seeing as I have never created a form like this before, I am personally excited to start. Your feedback, comments and e-mails; all mean the world to me. As this is the first time, I am going to leave this form open till September 13th (Blog Podium day Woot!).
     This is an invitation to help create a great future for Tea Journey. So write and write well, I am here to help you.  Let's get the party stated !


 Seeing as I have never created a form like this before, I am personally excited to start. Your feedback, comments and e-mails; all mean the world to me. As this is the first time, I am going to leave this form open till September 13th (Blog Podium day Woot!).
     This is an invitation to help create a great future for Tea Journey. So write and write well, I am here to help you.  Let's get the party stated !

August 1, 2014


Being in the moment and "stopping to smell the roses", helps you enjoy the little things in life. For example enjoy being at the cottage with family (where I am now) and enjoy the sensation of water as a dog shakes it off. It's a simple thing but let it happen as truthfully you can not gain control of every action of the universe. 
Namaste,
Katherine


Being in the moment and "stopping to smell the roses", helps you enjoy the little things in life. For example enjoy being at the cottage with family (where I am now) and enjoy the sensation of water as a dog shakes it off. It's a simple thing but let it happen as truthfully you can not gain control of every action of the universe. 
Namaste,
Katherine

July 30, 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.


  This months tea came with a little story in which the members of Global Tea Hut all had a hand in. While the leaves themselves may not have been picked by them (it takes a long time to have the speed and precision to pink tea). They were processed by them, from start to finish!
   The end result was a lovely Red Tea that they created on their visit to Yunnan. "Daughter of the Forest" or Qian Jia Zhai 2014 , made completely with leaves from a wild tree that is well over 200 - 700 years old in Ai Lao, Yunnan.
   Each member created their own batch and every one was put together at the end. You might be asking "why would they do this?". The reason is that as they made their own batch they infused the tea with their energy at every stage, then when they mixed them together every ones energy became one.  When drinking the tea you can feel the good intentions coming through because of this extra step.
       "Daughter of the Forest" tasted smooth, with cooked fruit taste and a light baked bread like flavor (it reminded me of baked bread, the "proper" term would be brisk). The energy was definitely there as instantly it calmed every nerve and muscle in my body. My family had gone through a very stressful ordeal (water damage and a little drama, more on this latter), so having a cup of this truly helped me realize that the stress will pass. Basically I had begun to meditate with the tea.


 Which brings me to my favorite article in the magazine "Eight Bowls: A Meditative Mind" by Shane Marrs. Here Shane explains how both tea and water respond to human emotions. They "suck it up" and it comes through when we make our tea. For example, if you have ever had tea made by someone who is having a truly bad day, that tea will have a differnt taste than from someone who is having a fantastic day. A better example would be the difference between tea from a tea ceremony to tea quickly made at home. They are night and day!
     A great explanation is this zen quote, " If I'm not mindful then it isn't tea that we're drinking,, but rather my afflictions and delusions".  For me this line explains that is important to focus on one thing at a time, in this case tea. If tea is not the focus then are you really "tasting" the truth of the tea itself?


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.


  This months tea came with a little story in which the members of Global Tea Hut all had a hand in. While the leaves themselves may not have been picked by them (it takes a long time to have the speed and precision to pink tea). They were processed by them, from start to finish!
   The end result was a lovely Red Tea that they created on their visit to Yunnan. "Daughter of the Forest" or Qian Jia Zhai 2014 , made completely with leaves from a wild tree that is well over 200 - 700 years old in Ai Lao, Yunnan.
   Each member created their own batch and every one was put together at the end. You might be asking "why would they do this?". The reason is that as they made their own batch they infused the tea with their energy at every stage, then when they mixed them together every ones energy became one.  When drinking the tea you can feel the good intentions coming through because of this extra step.
       "Daughter of the Forest" tasted smooth, with cooked fruit taste and a light baked bread like flavor (it reminded me of baked bread, the "proper" term would be brisk). The energy was definitely there as instantly it calmed every nerve and muscle in my body. My family had gone through a very stressful ordeal (water damage and a little drama, more on this latter), so having a cup of this truly helped me realize that the stress will pass. Basically I had begun to meditate with the tea.


 Which brings me to my favorite article in the magazine "Eight Bowls: A Meditative Mind" by Shane Marrs. Here Shane explains how both tea and water respond to human emotions. They "suck it up" and it comes through when we make our tea. For example, if you have ever had tea made by someone who is having a truly bad day, that tea will have a differnt taste than from someone who is having a fantastic day. A better example would be the difference between tea from a tea ceremony to tea quickly made at home. They are night and day!
     A great explanation is this zen quote, " If I'm not mindful then it isn't tea that we're drinking,, but rather my afflictions and delusions".  For me this line explains that is important to focus on one thing at a time, in this case tea. If tea is not the focus then are you really "tasting" the truth of the tea itself?


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

July 28, 2014


 
 Through High School I was very dedicated to learning Wicca and felt that it was my path. As the years passed I left it behind but still maintained an altar. This space kept me focused and reminded me of the goals I wanted to accomplish. Now more than ever I need this space, to center myself and guide me to where I am going next. With my Durama still missing one eye (you paint the second one after your goal or wish has been granted/fulfilled) I am very eager to get the ball rolling.

   The key items on my Altar are my Guwan Yin statue , Durama, and Inari (fox) figure. The first I got last year, it called to me as it had the Heart Sutra on the front and lotus flowers around the base. Also I have a bit of a personal connection with Guwan Yin that is hard to explain.  Durama, as I mentioned still only has one eye painted (this is the red "ball" like figure behind the Angel). When you receive one you decide on a goal or wish and paint one eye. The other one is only painted once it is fulfilled. Lastly, Inari is the small fox figure. I have a connection to foxes that has lasted since High School. Inari, to me, is the god of tea. This is because the figure is usually prayed to for harvest and fertility, but for me that is tea.






 Create your own Altar

  Altars have many shapes and forms but common items include incense and candles. While there is no one way to create an Altar or shrine, here is a few suggestions of overall "themes".

Love shrine

Create a space that is dedicated to finding your soul mate (or go the Hey Arnold route and dedicate it to someone). The items you could include may be: letters you wrote, candles, pictures, figures, books, gifts for them etc

A loved one who passed 

 When my grandpa passed a few years ago adding a picture of him helped me grieve but having a space just dedicated to them alone is also another route. You could include things they liked , jewelry that was theirs, pictures, any item that reminds you of them and perhaps some candles. 

Travel

Whether you have caught the travel bug or itching to go on an adventure, creating a space to remind yourself of your goals is perfect. Add pictures of the places you want to go, figures of landmarks, souvenirs, postcards, maps etc.

Your own religious practice 

     Everyone has their own beliefs so I wanted to put this idea out there. Create a space that reflects that. I was brought up Christian but I do not truly follow any one set of practices. This is why my shrine has a mix of differnt symbols. Although if I were a practicing Christian I would perhaps have a bible, statue of marry and pictures of my family. Or If I were Jewish I would again create a little collection of items that reminded me of my faith. 
  No matter what your faith and beliefs you can create a space for your practice. They are part of you , so keep them with you.

I would love to see your altar/shrine, share links to pictures in the comments below.


 
 Through High School I was very dedicated to learning Wicca and felt that it was my path. As the years passed I left it behind but still maintained an altar. This space kept me focused and reminded me of the goals I wanted to accomplish. Now more than ever I need this space, to center myself and guide me to where I am going next. With my Durama still missing one eye (you paint the second one after your goal or wish has been granted/fulfilled) I am very eager to get the ball rolling.

   The key items on my Altar are my Guwan Yin statue , Durama, and Inari (fox) figure. The first I got last year, it called to me as it had the Heart Sutra on the front and lotus flowers around the base. Also I have a bit of a personal connection with Guwan Yin that is hard to explain.  Durama, as I mentioned still only has one eye painted (this is the red "ball" like figure behind the Angel). When you receive one you decide on a goal or wish and paint one eye. The other one is only painted once it is fulfilled. Lastly, Inari is the small fox figure. I have a connection to foxes that has lasted since High School. Inari, to me, is the god of tea. This is because the figure is usually prayed to for harvest and fertility, but for me that is tea.






 Create your own Altar

  Altars have many shapes and forms but common items include incense and candles. While there is no one way to create an Altar or shrine, here is a few suggestions of overall "themes".

Love shrine

Create a space that is dedicated to finding your soul mate (or go the Hey Arnold route and dedicate it to someone). The items you could include may be: letters you wrote, candles, pictures, figures, books, gifts for them etc

A loved one who passed 

 When my grandpa passed a few years ago adding a picture of him helped me grieve but having a space just dedicated to them alone is also another route. You could include things they liked , jewelry that was theirs, pictures, any item that reminds you of them and perhaps some candles. 

Travel

Whether you have caught the travel bug or itching to go on an adventure, creating a space to remind yourself of your goals is perfect. Add pictures of the places you want to go, figures of landmarks, souvenirs, postcards, maps etc.

Your own religious practice 

     Everyone has their own beliefs so I wanted to put this idea out there. Create a space that reflects that. I was brought up Christian but I do not truly follow any one set of practices. This is why my shrine has a mix of differnt symbols. Although if I were a practicing Christian I would perhaps have a bible, statue of marry and pictures of my family. Or If I were Jewish I would again create a little collection of items that reminded me of my faith. 
  No matter what your faith and beliefs you can create a space for your practice. They are part of you , so keep them with you.

I would love to see your altar/shrine, share links to pictures in the comments below.

July 25, 2014

 While we still have weeks left of summer ahead of us, I love being prepared. Throughout summer I have found and used a few things that just made my day a little bit better (or simpler). These four items are my top picks that I am going to continue to use going into the next season.


Tea

  On my visit to Lauriam Tea House with my brother I spotted this little gem. The spout/filter comes with two adapters that will allow it to fit on any water bottle! It has been coming with me to yoga class, allowed me to use up more tea and kept me hydrated. 

Beauty

 It has been a long running tradition for my Mom and I to watch City Line together, especially on Fashion Friday! Late Spring this little blessing was shown and I just had to try it out! My lips had never felt so moisturized from any lip colored product. It has been part of my quick- and -easy beauty routine since (I am such a lipstick and eyeliner girl). Currently I only have #4, a lovely bright orange that works for my complexion but this pink (or brighter) is on my list.

Body

  I am notorious for skipping breakfast, but that is not a problem anymore. Before this plant based mix I was using Vega and it was WAY too sweet. This one is perfect as it is packed with vitamins, minerals and all those things that our body needs. The bonus for me is that it helps so much that I have almost cut coffee out of my "morning" routine and replaced it with lemon water (More on that latter) or tea. 

Home 

   With everyone glued to their phones these days, it is refreshing to receive (or send) an actual letter. These note cards are adorable! I can not imagine working at my desk without them. They can be used for birthdays, thank you notes, anniversaries etc. To make things even easier they are organized by little tabs so you always know what you have.

 While we still have weeks left of summer ahead of us, I love being prepared. Throughout summer I have found and used a few things that just made my day a little bit better (or simpler). These four items are my top picks that I am going to continue to use going into the next season.


Tea

  On my visit to Lauriam Tea House with my brother I spotted this little gem. The spout/filter comes with two adapters that will allow it to fit on any water bottle! It has been coming with me to yoga class, allowed me to use up more tea and kept me hydrated. 

Beauty

 It has been a long running tradition for my Mom and I to watch City Line together, especially on Fashion Friday! Late Spring this little blessing was shown and I just had to try it out! My lips had never felt so moisturized from any lip colored product. It has been part of my quick- and -easy beauty routine since (I am such a lipstick and eyeliner girl). Currently I only have #4, a lovely bright orange that works for my complexion but this pink (or brighter) is on my list.

Body

  I am notorious for skipping breakfast, but that is not a problem anymore. Before this plant based mix I was using Vega and it was WAY too sweet. This one is perfect as it is packed with vitamins, minerals and all those things that our body needs. The bonus for me is that it helps so much that I have almost cut coffee out of my "morning" routine and replaced it with lemon water (More on that latter) or tea. 

Home 

   With everyone glued to their phones these days, it is refreshing to receive (or send) an actual letter. These note cards are adorable! I can not imagine working at my desk without them. They can be used for birthdays, thank you notes, anniversaries etc. To make things even easier they are organized by little tabs so you always know what you have.

July 23, 2014


    Noticing fine details is one of  my skills and it came in handy early June. While my family and I were looking through the Japanese Tea House at the Montreal Botanical Garden, this little guy caught my eye. It was just outside the sliding glass across from the tatami tea room. While its small and has no sign attached, it has a specific purpose.

   This rock tied with string is called Sekimoriishi, or " barrier- keeper stone". When a stone is placed on a stepping stone in a tea garden, do not go along the path it blocks. The host of the tea gathering places it along the path to help guests get to the desired destination.

 Really neat right? It's very simple but it keeps everything simple.  If you forget everything, just treat the stone like yellow police tape. That way you are good to go for your next Tea Ceremony Class or gathering.
 
    By the way, I love knowing things like this are done right. So I tried to open the door, and it would not budge. What a great way to indirectly (maybe) teach visitors the meaning behind the stone.


    Noticing fine details is one of  my skills and it came in handy early June. While my family and I were looking through the Japanese Tea House at the Montreal Botanical Garden, this little guy caught my eye. It was just outside the sliding glass across from the tatami tea room. While its small and has no sign attached, it has a specific purpose.

   This rock tied with string is called Sekimoriishi, or " barrier- keeper stone". When a stone is placed on a stepping stone in a tea garden, do not go along the path it blocks. The host of the tea gathering places it along the path to help guests get to the desired destination.

 Really neat right? It's very simple but it keeps everything simple.  If you forget everything, just treat the stone like yellow police tape. That way you are good to go for your next Tea Ceremony Class or gathering.
 
    By the way, I love knowing things like this are done right. So I tried to open the door, and it would not budge. What a great way to indirectly (maybe) teach visitors the meaning behind the stone.