Sunday, August 31, 2014

A fun little questionnaire about me, reading, and blogging

 I filled out a quick questionnaire from Michelle F.'s page LINK

(1) What made you start a blog?
I love to write and blogging offered an opportunity to do so without having to go through the process of applying for a job at a newspaper or magazine.

(2) What is one tip you would offer a new blogger?
If you are bad at spelling and grammar, use spell check, have a dictionary tab open at all times and get it together. With all this technology around us, there is no reason for bad spelling or bad grammar in a post. Few things turn off readers faster than bad grammar and syntax. Serious bloggers know how to write.

(3) Where does your blogging inspiration come from?
Life, and inspiration are all around us.

(4) What do you like best about blogging?
Seeing comments form readers. I love when someone leaves a note saying how much they enjoyed a post. 

(5) Are you a morning person? Why/Why not?
Morning person because that's when I have the most energy.

(6) Who has the biggest influence on you? Why?
Holy Spirit and then my husband. They both make me want to be a better person.

(7) What is your favorite book?
Whatever I'm reading at the time, but Sandra Brown is a favorite author.

(8) What is the first book you remember reading?
I read quite a bit growing up and do not remember my first book but my favorite was Encyclopedia Brown.

(9) How do you feel about print books versus e-books?
I prefer print but have recently been reading many Amish fiction on my library's ebook page.

(10) What is your favorite piece of furniture? Why?
My wing back arm chair. It is covered in cabbage rose fabric and is perfect to sit in and read a book. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Tea review -Fuding Shou Mei White Tea Cake

I used to be a black tea only snob but doing these tea reviews for Teavivire has really changed my mind about tea. What makes a big difference is getting away from the standard tea offered in the typical tea room. For some reason, most tea rooms think that the typical American palate is so unrefined that it cannot handle green, oolong, or white tea unless it is flavored. Therefore, we are offered green tea that contains cooked bits of rice, or green tea that is cherry flavored.
Don't get me wrong. In y early days of discovering tea, I too drank these green, oolong, and white teas because they were, and to a certain degree still are, the only exposure most Westerners will have to green, oolong, or white tea.

Fuding Shou Mei white tea cake

However, drinking a great tea is its own reward.  Unadulterated by flavors, or scents other than what the plant was exposed to as it grew- is an experience everyone who calls themselves a tea lover must have at least once in their life. Without the added scents or flavors, the one drinking the tea can almost taste the sunshine and fresh air that encircled the mountain upon which the tea was grown.
Shou Mei steeping in pot.
Pictured is one such tea. Fuding Shou Mei. It is a white tea, formed and pressed into cakes. Most of us know that white tea is the least processed of teas. It contains the highest amounts of antioxidants and only contains about 10% of the caffeine you would find in a cup of coffee. For some, the low caffeine levels would be a draw back. It is precisely those low levels of stimulants that allow one to drink large amounts of white tea without bouncing off the walls. Enabling the drinker of white tea to enjoy more of the health benefits associated with drinking tea.
This Fuding Shou Mei white tea is exceptional.  It is light in flavor and yet flavorful at the same time. It sits well on the tongue and has a slight, but noticeable, sweetness in it.

With only 19 Saturdays left before Christmas (gasp! it's true!) I propose purchasing some of these finer teas as gifts. If you're stuck as to what to get for the tea enthusiast in your life, I suggest taking a look at the multi-packs of tea offered by, Teavivre. Just make sure to include some of this great white tea cake in your order.
p.s. tea makes a great gift for bosses, teachers, and clients as well.