Gingerbread Goodness


This will be the last post for the year and there won’t be any end of year recaps.  I’m sentimental but not in that way.

Instead, we’re headed into the homestretch with the Celestial Seasonings portion of the articles.


The penultimate choice in this collection of seasonal and holiday favorites is the Gingerbread Spice.


At first this tea didn’t do anything for me.   As always it smelled great upon the opening of the package.  The ginger and cinnamon came out like a house of fire.  I was so eager to brew this thing and get my day started off properly.

It started slow, much like many things in the morning, but it picked up by the moment.   Maybe I’ve been spoiled by some amazing teas by Celestial and other awesome companies.   However, this tea is a grower and deceptively creeps on you after a couple of minutes.


It’s probably for the better.  Too much cinnamon, too much ginger, and perhaps too much of anything can be counter-productive.  This is a peaceful sipping tea that I took my time with.   But shouldn’t they all be drank in comfort and peace?

As with other cups from other brands, there were times where I got a lot of flavor and some where I got none at all.   This is part of the all encompassing fun with the whole tea drinking experience.  No two sips are exactly the same.   Pretty cool I know.

I must admit the packaging gets me every time.  These two gingerbread friends (or lovebirds?) seem to really be enjoying themselves.  The holidays might be over but they don’t seem to care.

I’ve raved about the designs of their packages before and was glad to see they have a whole section dedicated to their artwork.  This is an enjoyable read.

I just took another sip and this one hit the spot.   With anything, never judge or presume anything initially.   Sometimes things take time to develop and blossom into something extraordinary.  On the contrary, some teas are doomed from the start, but this is not one of them.  This one was some longevity.   It’s a favorite that can be enjoyed into the cold winter months ahead.

What I take from this is a source of comfort and solace.  And that’s sometimes all you can ask for.

With their previous teas, not too many flavors is what helps.  Keeping it simple and knowing what you’re going to get makes this very precious.

A few frosted mini gingerbread join the party but didn’t last too long.  The pairing was perfect.  It’s a cold morning as I write this, so the situation is fitting.

For my previous posts on one one of my favorite tea brands, you can click here, over here, and finally here.

And for a previous ginger tea review, click here.

One last tea from the Celestial Seasonings package is coming.  Have I saved the best for the last?  They’ve all been stand-outs in their own way, so we shall see.

Any general questions about Celestial can hopefully be answered here.

And like in previous posts I have included a link on purchasing teas and a store locator.

I wish you all a great rest of your holiday season.  I know for many it can be full of commotion and go at a frenetic pace.  Hopefully you got to enjoy yourself and will continue to do so into the new year.

Take good care.



Nutcracker So Sweet


That picture above says it all doesn’t it?

This is not a repeat.   Celestial Seasonings was kind enough to send me an assortment of teas since my post 3 weeks ago.  And  I am honored to be recapping them this week, last week, and a couple more down the line.

The Nutcracker Sweet was an uplifting experience.  Why so wondrous?   Well it was a Christmas gift exchange between some dear friends and myself, which as of this writing concluded a few hours ago.

It’s been a tradition going on for quite a number of years now.  I’ve lost touch but that’s besides the point.  It’s a tradition I’m ecstatic, humbled, and take comfort in being a part of.   I look forward to it every year, more than most dates on the calendar.

No matter how this tea turned out, the event was going to be a success. And in turn everything is going to taste, smell, and feel better.   Fortunately this tea is amazing. It’s a simple black tea with cinnamon and vanilla thrown in to concoct a holiday stroke of genius.

The flavors and tastes come together perfectly.  When I first opened the package the smell hit me like a Christmas Miracle.  That might be a bit dramatic but I think you know what I mean.   And after steeping the aromas and fragrances made me feel warm inside.   I had multiple cups.

The reindeer mug was one of my gifts and that makes he so happy.  How awesome is this?  I am thrilled that I broke my present in with such a glorious refreshment.

And how about that packaging? Doesn’t that capture the spirit of the ballet or performance itself?

Actually I’ve never seen the Nutcracker so I have no idea. But I’m assuming yes?


Keeping it simple is what  works here.  And our gift exchange echoes those sentiments.  We enjoyed plenty of tasty treats, beverages, libations, and a nice dinner. But to settle our stomachs, a cup of tea was in order, and I couldn’t think of a better tea to serve that purpose.

The caffeine level is also not as high as I thought which is an added bonus. A little bit never hurt anyone though.   And during these hectic holiday times, might be a necessity.

The weather has been slowly turning colder and teas like this can be appreciated it more.   Either sharing with the ones you love or in solitude, you can’t go wrong.   I am grateful I was a part of the former.  The holidays are always better with good company.  And I was with some of the best company.  I am so thankful for that.

If you’re interested in purchasing this tea click here and here is the store locator of where their splendid teas can be found.

It’s Christmas week and every holiday season seems to have a different feel.  This has been a unique one for sure.  The temperatures in the Maryland area had been warmer, people have gotten busier and then others have made themselves more available.

I am grateful to be a part of so many universes, yet we are all one.  This cup of tea has given a certain zen and tranquility I otherwise may not have.  The fellowship of friends heightens that.


There’s so much good I can say about this but I will let the photos do most of the talking.


I wish you a happy holiday week and I sincerely hope you get to spend it with the people you love.

Take good care,



Candy, I Can’t Let You Go


Two weeks ago I wrote about a holiday themed tea  from Celestial Seasonings that I wasn’t enamored with.   I was professional, constructive, yet honest in my response.  However, my intent is never to be so bullish and over-the-top that my sincerity gets mired in negativity.

I like to think that’s part of why they got in touch with me and sent me a bunch of holiday teas for me to try.

I want to make perfectly clear, they did not pay me or coerce me in any way to write about their products or to automatically give rave reviews to their products. These opinions are my own and always will be.

Fortunately, the tea this week needs no nudging or coaxing from anybody to sing its praises.

The Candy Cane Lane is an absolute joy and what I expect from a top-tier tea company such as Celestial.

As a strange aside, I had no idea it was a green tea, or a decaffeinated one for that matter, until I double-checked the box.  This tasted like a great peppermint treasure with a passionate dose of vanilla and hints of cinnamon.

It was so good the photos and brewing process went over two consecutive evenings.  I think that looks so elegant.

There’s a lot of ingredients listed here, and unlike last week, they all come together so elegantly.   I was thrilled to discover that orange peel and blackberry leaves were included as well.  Who would have known?  I couldn’t detect it immediately and never during my sipping.  But hopefully next time.

Man this tea was fun.  And how can you not be drawn to the packaging again?   Those bears seems to be enjoying themselves and the holidays. This is as approachable and attractive as it gets folks.

One question I have, is this what’s in a candy cane itself?  I had no idea. If not, I don’t care.  This is a tea I will surely be enjoying into the early part of next year.

Here in the Mid-Atlantic it’s been charmingly warm and I’m embracing every moment of it.  Even though this may not fit the mood of these teas, one can pretend it’s below freezing or just enjoy the season for what it is.


I am enjoying another cup at the moment and may brew some again.  It’s the holidays and an excuse to eat till your hearts content but also keeping some balance and composure.


We enjoyed our cups with some savory snacks such as chocolates, pepper mint pretzel slims and some mini frosted gingerbread men.  I bet you’re thinking too pretty to eat but so good it would be a disservice not to.  I’ll go with the latter. The Rudolph Gummies may have to wait another week.


I loved it and it looks like the next three weeks will be all about Celestial Seasonings, unless I throw in some bonus posts.  During the holidays that may be a difficult task, but only if I make it as such.  There’s room for everything.


In the meanwhile, you can lose yourself in their website with tea information here and here.  There’s so much to learn from links like these that I hope to incorporate some of what I’ve learned into future posts.

And if you want to purchase any of their fun teas, click here!

Keep on enjoying the holidays!





Ginger Chai Commotion

Yeah that title makes no sense.  There isn’t commotion other than maybe Chai isn’t for me.

We continue the holiday teas with a brand I have never reviewed.


I introduce to you the Gingerbread Chai fom Zhena’s Gypsy Tea.    I’ll admit the label sold me.  He looks so happy and that makes me happy too! These are the images that many of us like to see during the holidays and year round for that matter.


I thought it was good.  Yet it took a while to get going.   I think I’ve spoiled my whole life expecting so many teas to knock my socks off.  This didn’t happen.   The ingredients that you see listed above were not easy for me to detect.   I just feel like everything clashed and got lost in the shuffle

I love cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.   Nothing stood out. Even licorice,which I shudder to think about, wasn’t on my radar.  So what’s wrong here?   Maybe too much of a good thing?  Or in this instance, too many things.

I did finish my tea at my usual pace. What I wrote above made it sound so terrible but it’s really not.  It’s just not inspiring.   It’s a decent cup made with great flavors that should have come out better.   And just because I didn’t love doesn’t mean you’ll have the same response.

There were times when I got a kick at the end, or the finish.  But it wasn’t consistent.

It smelled great when I opened the package and throughout the steeping process the aromas were growing by the second.  It just didn’t transfer over during the actual sipping experience.

I’m not sure but this might be the first time this mug has been used during my writing so that’s a bit exciting right?  Yessir…


I had my cup with some holiday themed cookies, including some gingerbread shaped treats, which did make the experience all that much better.


As you see, the Santa plate has made its auspicious return from last week.

When reading about Zhena’s story and their good intentions, it only makes me want to try more of their abundance of selections.  And that will come.

I will be getting around to a couple of their Glass Jars in the next month or so, if not sooner.   They have so many flavors that are outside the normal parameters of what many of us have been conditioned and gotten used.

For my previous post on chai, you can click here.

With so many holiday teas to try I just know the next few weeks and into the new year are only going to get better.  I fully expect to be writing about something breathtaking next week. I’m all for it.

I sincerely hope your holiday season has been one of comfort, joy, and a strong feeling of community.

Stay warm and stay healthy.





Happy December

That was quick.  With such little turnaround from Thanksgiving to Christmas, we are now fully entrenched in the holiday season.

I already miss the pumpkins and I was missing it even while still fully involved in all the teas and delicacies.  But I can’t pine forever so I not-so-quietly move on to some hot ones that fit in the mold of this season, or I hope.


Celestial Seasonings has always been a go-to and a staple in my collection. And for the many years I’ve been sipping  I’ve only been seldom disappointed in their brand.

Just recently, they’ve gone through another metamorphosis in their packaging.   I adore and am very found of the new look.  To me it’s bohemian yet contemporary. It just has this appearance about it that I’m drawn to.   I don’t know if it’s the font, the photos, or something beyond. I’ll get to more of that in a little bit.

I was once again back at my local supermarket knowing I was going to focus on teas for the winter months, and with this being December, a emphasis on the holidays and Christmas.

Their collection of holiday teas is enough for its own temporary blog and possibly bonus posts.  But I digress and as always to intend to focus on one or just a select few (if this situation justifies it) per article.


This week I went with the Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride and without any hesitation the package sold me.   I understand the artwork depicts sugar cookies as people on a sleigh being pulled by more reindeer cookies.  I don’t care if makes me feel something and even just the little something is enough.


I wanted to like this.  I so wanted to like this.  But this was an ambitious selection. A tea that’s going to taste like sugar cookies you might think would be artificial, but not here.

There is no caffeine which is just fine.  I drank this in the evening and no need to be wide awake if the occasion doesn’t call for it.

But the ingredients tell an interesting story.   I love vanilla bean and orange peel, I thought both would really elevate this tea to wonderful heights and evoke that sugar cookie sentimentality.  That didn’t happen.

Maybe seeing barley included maybe should have raised an eyebrow.  I am not opposed to it but it’s never a taste I’ve overly been enthusiastic over.

The tea bags itself did permeate with cookie goodness but that didn’t last long.   The steeping process gave an interesting clear color that emulated the look and feel of said sweet treat.  But the smell wasn’t as appealing while brewing.


I couldn’t finish my cup.   I think the tastes were few-and-far between. There were times I honestly felt like I was just drinking a cup of hot water and that was it.  I got hints of a sugary sweet taste but those weren’t frequent and maybe I tricked my head and mouth into thinking as much.   The barley really dominated everything else.


I had a nice arrangement of chocolates and cookies I was going to enjoy them with but no dice.  Hopefully next time. Santa seemed happy regardless.   I wanted to be happy too.


I was sad about that.  I really wanted to enjoy this but that didn’t happen. This is not going to deter me in any way.   The season is long and I will be writing about teas like this going into early next year.  But let me live in the present moment.   I will be writing about this amazing company again very soon.

And I hope to expound on all the good they have done the joy they’ve brought into my life.  My inaugural post on them reflects this notion.

Happy Holiday Season!