TeBella For Two

TeBella2Tea7

This is a continuation from last week where I discovered and fully embraced the beauty that is TeBella of Downtown St. Petersburg, FL.    As I said this was not a one-time thing, and I hope it’s not a one vacation thing.  I made a second visit in I think as of many days, and can tell a different yet at the same time the same beautiful experience at this beautiful venue.

TeBella2sign

What I glossed over and did not specify last week (I blame my excitement and hazy memory) that Tebella is part of Station House, which is a beautiful and welcoming space that doesn’t have that stuffy and pretentious vibe that I’ve seen around town and elsewhere.  Once again, I may be romanticizing but everyone here either was friendly or kept to themselves.  I only felt good energy, good vibes, and some more good tea.

TeBella2Room

I may have been a bit overwhelmed by the TeBella’s extensive and inspiring tea collection the first time, that I could make some generic proclamation that I was better prepared the second time.  That’s no fun.  The fun is losing yourself in all these teas.

This time I went through the White Tea list, and wanted to keep the Summer themed party going with the delicious and magnificent Blueberry Mountain Sunrise, iced of course.

TeBella2Menu

The synopsis says it all, the whole blueberries and pomegranate are not there to overpower the tea but to serve as an enhancement. I can imagine how great this would be hot as well.   But that color radiates and makes me smile, makes me feel good, and makes me truly appreciate the joy that is tea drinking.

For this sitting I took my time indoors, as this was afternoon, and there was a little more activity than my original visit which was right around the start of business day.  But again, business here is different than any other city I’ve visited.  It’s only part of the culture, but doesn’t seem to be the most important.

PinellasChocolate

TeBella2Tea2

And if this wasn’t awesome enough, I noticed they had a lovely display of Pineallas Chocolate.  Since its local and I was local for a few days it naturally made sense to buy some.  In hindsight I wish I got more.   The Cacao Orange was my perfect yet unconventional pairing with my tea.  But does it really matter?  The teas are there, the chocolates presented themselves like they were waiting to me purchased by me, and everyone else.  This was match made in tea and cocoa heaven, the universe, and all the beautiful stuff in between.

TeBella2Tea6

There were a few other charming experiences and encounters during these two visits, that only seem fitting to keep internal, as anyone who goes on vacation and is sentimental is.  Some things are just hard or not meant to be elaborated in words that hopefully those hints are something we all can relate to and have experienced.  There’s little gems we can laugh about either with ourselves or with the company we were with.

TeBella2Tea5

In these instances I was alone but I really wasn’t.  But then I was again.  And that’s what going away is all about, losing yourself and finding yourself all at once.    Somewhere in all this tea drinking are metaphors and analogies (or the other way around) of life.

As I finish this post I realize these were not so little moments.   There were moments of peace, calm, and just appreciating the moments that don’t need to be photographed or documented for the world to see.  I didn’t mean to be so vague.   I’m writing from the heart, as we all do from time to time.

These two tea experiences reminded me that life can be so wonderful, and all I did was drink some tea, have some pastry, and have some chocolate.  To me this is something bigger than all of us.

To purchase any of TeBella’s teas click here, more on how great TeBella is, and their contact information.

TeBella2Room2

I will be back.

PinellasChocolateLabel

And here’s where you can find Pinella’s locally and a link to buy their chocolate online.

TeBella2TeaOutside

I can’t say this enough, the tea culture in St. Petersburg is incredible.  As amazing as this was, I have more stories (another one can be found here and here’s another one!) to share.  I will get to them when the timing and feeling is right. It could be next week or could be down the line.  I truly believe that these posts will match these amazing experiences I’ve had in Florida so far.

I can’t wait to share them with you.

Thank you so much.

Ideen

Tea, Art, Happiness…

PomPomsSalad&Tea2

I think my visit to St. Petersburg, FL came at the most perfect time.

The amount of items I could write about is going to be endless.   And I will be spacing them out.  Last week it was Tampa, this week and for the foreseeable future it’s going to be St. Pete and all St. Pete.  No not every week but sporadically through the summer I’m going to expound upon how incredible the tea culture is here.  And incredible might be an understatement.

I found tea places, I stumbled upon tea places, tea shoppes found me, and my reaction to a few were that of a kid in a candy store.  Yes it’s these little things (that are the big things) that give me natural and spiritual highs that words may not always do justice. I’ve made that proclamation before but I stand by that.  Sometimes words an pictures aren’t enough.  Memories are for us and all we can do is our best to share them in our own harmonious and sentimental way.

PomPomsSign

With that one of my first stops in St. Pete was Pom Pom’s Teahouse.

I know, how awesome is that name?

And just as awesome is the place.  Everything about is, was, or whatever you want to call it a constant reminder of why this town is beautiful.  And why it now has my heart.

When I first arrived in town my friend guided me through St. Pete and I noticed so many amazing looking shops, restaurants, businesses, and everything else in between that makes this place (that’s on the rise) already look like it’s there (in a good way) and I wouldn’t want anything about it to change.  I probably put this paragraph in the wrong part of the post.  It’s as if I put the finish or the crescendo here, before I’ve even gotten into the tea and this incredible salad that I ordered.

PomPomsEntrance

So let me get to that and see if I can come up with another finish with some big words that will enhance this experience that doesn’t need any more enhancing but deserves all the praise in the world.

Ok…

So I was there on a weekday afternoon, presumably on the tail end of the lunch rush.  If there is a lunch rush here it doesn’t mirror other major cities, and I found that so refreshing.  It was a mix of students, police officers, office workers, tourists, and overall a lot of people that seemed genuinely happy to be there.

I was happy to be there.

There was so much art adorning the walls, which is a point that Pom Pom’s wants to promote.  They’re all about local art, and creating and promoting art is one of the greatest things in this world and in this universe.

PomPomsTables

After taking so many pictures of the inside, I requested to my friendly server, Brett, if I could sit outdoors.   He kindly obliged.  I was surprised that I was the only one out there. But how could I complain?  I was the only person on Earth for about an hour, or at least in that moment.

PomPomsBuddha

I made a new friend outside, as you can see.  I felt as if he could read my mind.  And maybe he could.  I think he was saying everything is great, everything is going to be fine, and you’re on vacation, enjoy yourself.

PomPomsTea1

And I did…

PomPomsSalad

My meal comprised of a Kiwi Pear Iced Tea and their Seasonal Berry Salad, which may have been one of the best things I’ve eaten, not only on my holiday, but in a long while.  It almost looked too pretty to eat.   But those berries were heavenly.    I almost forgot there were almonds and peanuts in the salad.  It was that great.  The goat cheese and onions made for a simple yet artistic looking salad.  This really was a masterpiece.

PomPomsSalad&Tea1

Those berries were something out of a smoothie or freshly made ice cream.  And on a gorgeous day in Florida, what could be better.

PomPomsTea5

The tea was the understated, yet still elegant part of my meal.  It was light and on this day this was a welcome treat versus something a little too sweet, since the berries were sweet enough.   I did wish I could taste a little more kiwi and pear, but really no complaints from me whatsoever.

PomPomsTea7

Brett, who like many of my friends I got to visit, is a transplant from Maryland.  I can see the appeal.  I can see why so many people like the mellow vibe and harmonious ways of being in beautiful St. Petersburg.

PomPomsTea2

More posts are coming and if they can match this experience than I’ve already succeeded.  My time at Pom Pom’s was one of joy, of peace, and of art.  Yes I did take many pictures but then I just sat, relaxed, and started off into the distance.

PomPomsTeaDistance

I might have been there an hour, two hours, or somewhere that time can’t measure.  But this one hit my heart in a different way than many other tea and dining experiences. And I want to believe it was more than just being away from home, being somewhere else, and being one with the universe.  Well the latter part is great.  But I hope you know what I mean.

This was beautiful.

If you’re in the vicinity, or are a local and have never visited, I can’t recommend this place enough.

Here is more about them, their menu, the art, the buzz, directions, and their contact information.

PomPomsArt

When I’m back in the area, and I will be back, how do I follow-up?  It may not be the identical experience, but I sense it will be spectacular, and will tell a different story of what makes Pom Pom’s and this town special to me and special to so many.

PomPomsTea4

Thank you so much.

Ideen

 

Spread That Love

ETS10

I will be self indulgent for a bit.  But when it come to blogging isn’t that what blogging is? I’m talking about a subject matter while throwing my personal spin on things.  That may not appeal to some but then again we all have a story, and I think all of our stories matter.

ETS12

My birthday was recently. And while I don’t expect anything, whenever I do get a gift I’m eternally grateful.  I’m annoyingly eternity grateful to the point I can’t stop saying, ‘thank you!’.  Spreading the love, showing gratitude, and saying thanks is what life is all about. It’s not much but a simple mutual gesture of comradery and friendship goes so far in this universe.

ETS4

This is why the gift of tea, and this most incredible teacup, from my close friends has had me grinning over a week later.

ETS15

Within all my charming gifts, I find the most beautiful canister from English Tea Shop.

ETS1

Now if memory serves me correctly, the last time, and maybe the only time, I had their tea was with the same friend(s) who gave me this gift.    I don’t remember what tea I had then, but the Chamomile they gave me this time is one I will never forget.  And not just because it was a present.

 

I mean that.  There’s so much to this tea.

When you see an inviting and bright pink container it’s automatically going to make the tea taste that much better.  And I haven’t even opened it yet.  That tea kettle design with all the images of the season are just adding to everything.  No added pressure.  But this tea needs to be good or I’ll be really sad.

It was really good.  Actually it was great. And it’s a lighter than usual chamomile.  And I brewed this on the sunniest of all days.  I would have made this iced but…

ETS14

…Not only did I get this amazing tea, but right next to it was the most beautiful of all teacups (that I alluded to before).   They hit my heart.  Animals are the best.  My cat is the best.

ETS7

This cup is one I want to use all the time.  But for sentiments sake it will be one I will love, appreciate, and celebrate all over, but I feel it should only be used for the most special of occasions and the most special of teas.

ETS11

This chamomile is just that special.  And I’m not just saying that.  The steeping process was as charming and organic as the tea.   It may not show up in all the pictures but start to finish the natural progression and changing of colors in my teacup was as good as I’ve ever seen.

ETS6

I literally could see it before my very eyes.  It’s those little things that make me excited. No, actually they’re big things to me.  I didn’t want it to stop.  Here I am still building up all this excitement and I had yet to actually grab a sip.

ETS3

After celebrating the packaging, this beautiful teacup with some lovely cats, I can safely say this tea was fantastic. Actually somewhere in this post I did mention the tea was great, it was light, it was colorful, and it was calming.  The calming part is big.

ETS2

Chamomile is an herbal and wellness tea that is meant to bring peace and tranquility.  In a chaotic world (and not just the crazy cats) it’s sometimes hard to find.  But tea is always there for you.  It’s authentic, affordable, and approachable.  Yes I used all those big words that start with the letter ‘A’, on purpose.    But how about my cat friends?  What about all the fun things that start with ‘C’?  Calming, charming, and comforting.

I took my few pictures and then enjoyed myself in the comfort of my own home, with my cat, and with the beautiful weather surrounding me.

Cats are my favorite and this chamomile is now one of my favorites.

ETS17

This makes me want some more.  I’m a fan of English Tea Shop (or Shoppe as I like to call it), and I believe this is only the beginning.

ETS18

Here is their story,  their expansive list of teas, where you can find their teas around the globe, contact information, and once again their link to purchase their teas online.

I hope the opportunity presents itself that I get to try another of their teas.  This chamomile is perfect in any kind of weather.  I imagine it’s amazing iced and chilled, but it’s light and refreshing taste makes it work in wall temperatures and all seasons.

Whether it’s another gift from my dear friends, the universe, or somewhere else, I look forward to having many more of their selections for the duration.

Plus the cats really seem to like it.

Ideen

 

Hitting The Reset Button

numidisplay2

I read other blogs from time to time and catch a glimpse into a person’s life.  As much as the subject matter is most important, we can’t help but talk about ourselves.  There is no right or wrong to that.  It’s our blogs.  Whatever we say is our discretion.  And as long as we’re not hurting anyone, I say do what you do.

I had asked a dear friend for any suggestions on what to write about this week.  I always have a block of ideas for weeks like this, but nothing resonated with me.  Either that or the teas don’t apply to winter or to anything.

The holidays are over and that means the teas will have a more winter theme, but they could be about anything.  But I want it to be just right.

My friend suggested writing about turmeric, and Numi in particular.   I liked the sound of everything I was hearing.

Then I got that ring of familiarity.  As if I had come across it before. Lo and behold, nearly 6 months ago today I wrote this post.  But this was in the Summer. And turmeric is best suited for the colder months, in my opinion.  But don’t listen to me, these teas are meant to be enjoyed the whole year.  If we have health issues that need tending, something that might taste funny on a 80+ degree today might just be what the tea Gods ordered.

That was the Amber Sun.  Fortunately for me, there is another turmeric tea from the good people at Numi, and I jumped all over it.  Today I present to you the unique and gorgeous Three Roots.

I’m under the weather.  I think months (maybe a couple years) of being spread so thin has finally caught up with me.   The holidays not withstanding, this goes back longer.

I just have not been one to sit still much.  It’s in my best interest to do so.  As much as I like to say I stay home more (and there’s been stretches of that), I like the company of my friends and all the activities that come with it.   I love drinking wine, and unfortunately I love eating food that I should have in limited doses.

To contrast that, I also work out a lot, but I do it more than necessary. And worse than that, my sleep patterns have been at the worse they’ve ever been.  However, like with anything, our bodies get used to it.  It’s an adrenaline kick that seems like it has no expiration date.

That’s over for now.   I think it has all finally caught up to me.  That and the weather patterns are there for the cold or for the flu.   I’m quite clueless as to what I might have.  I tend to just live life as if I’m happy and healthy.  Right now I’m not sure I’m either.

Thankfully this is on a holiday and the stresses are lessened.  I hope so at least.  Since it’s been post Christmas, the commotion has died now.  But it’s let me with a sense of needing that next dose of excitement.  It’s time to take it down a couple of notches.

Aside from purchasing the Three Roots tea, I haven’t left my house.  And it feels ok.  But it took being under the weather for this to happen.

I’ve been laying in bed all day.  I’ve been unable to move.  But I understand that the body and mind are just trying to heal themselves.  It’s resetting itself.  I also know that I’m not as young as I once was.  It’s a must to take it easy.   I worry a lot, I am all over the map, and none of this is constructive.

numidisplay5

It took whatever energy I had left to make this tea.  And I’m so grateful I finally did.

numidisplay7

This is not the best tasting tea nor did I expect it to be.  But what it was, is going to lead me into the continued healing process.  My dear pal suggesting this tea and me being as out of it as I am, is no accident.  These things connect.  And this tea connected me to a spiritual place I’ve not encountered in a long time.  Well maybe I have, but I just wasn’t aware of it.

numidisplay1

I made two cups and without realizing it took my sweet time with both.  When you are humbled and have less energy, it’ll force yourself to adjust.  Like an old man, I was starting at a wall, with nothing but my thoughts.  I’m contemplating things.   What those things are, are between me and the universe.  But this tea did something to me.

numidisplay6

And that golden brown color is worth the price of purchase alone.  It tastes bitter but it’s supposed to. The combination of turmeric, ginger, rose, and licorice is my best friend right now.

numidisplay4

The health benefits of turmeric have been widely documented.  I  hope I’m the recipient of some as I pray I get some of the best sleep of my life, and wake up tomorrow resuming the healing process.

Here is a store locator on where you can find all their amazing teas.  You can also shop online at your convenience.  Like I said in June, with Numi, we’re just getting started.

It was just me, my thoughts, and my cat (I love her so much) when sipping this tea.  When you can barely move, you start being thankful for all the things you do have.  It shouldn’t come to this where this is where you show gratitude.  But here I am.

It’s time to take it easy.

Stay Healthy,

Ideen

 

 

 

 

Have A Holly & A Jolly

hollyjollytree2

I know I know, Christmas is officially over.  It’s 2017.  It’s time to move forward. But what better way to move forward then talking about a new that could be beneficial to all the folks who enjoyed themselves a little too much over the holidays.  I would fall into that category as well.

The Holly Jolly Ginger Aid Tea from Traditional Medicinals might have been what you were looking for.  Unfortunately it may be hard to find right now.  As I was lucky to find this as a clearance item at my local Wegmans.

hollyjollybox3

You might be able to tell by the photo that I literally snagged the last one.  I thought that it might have been waiting for me to be sampled and reviewed.  In hindsight, I wish I got around to this within the last couple of weeks.

But I remember the first time I tried it that it didn’t stick out to me in any way. The flavors of lemon, ginger, and blackberry really didn’t wow me whatsoever. This is part of why I waited a bit to right about it.

It had a nice aroma of lemon and ginger.  It didn’t overpower me which didn’t feel like a red flag on first sniff but made sense a few minutes later when I began sipping.

As like all teas, I really wanted to like this product.  Just look at that adorable packaging. And look at how pretty at the design of the bags before being opened.

Sadly, the tea was just kind of there.  And I’m a huge fan of Traditional Medicinals so I consider this an aberration more than anything. It has the tint and shine of another solid tea but I wouldn’t go out of my way to find it again.  But I do have a near full package so I will do my best to enjoy it over time.

On a personal note I’ve pretty much had a full stomach and lethargic way about me going back a while.  This goes back way before Thanksgiving.   Without getting into too many details, this tea hasn’t been as beneficial in that regard as I hoped. Maybe it worked differently for you if you did get some yourself.

I can’t speak for you or anyone else, but I can only imagine that over the last month or so, eating healthy and seeking out health with digestion was not at the top of everyone’s list. That’s completely understandable.

We have this short time on earth and want to enjoy ourselves not only during the holidays but with all the celebrations we attend.  In that way we should feel blessed that we get the opportunity to be invited to such gatherings.  I’m grateful to have been a part of a few myself this holiday season.  I hope you got to enjoy yourself as well.

But as with New Years and all the resolutions that come with it means a bit of a reality check.  Many of us try to eat healthy, exercise, and practice healthy lifestyle choices.  The decisions we make on a daily basis can lead us to that happy and healthy place.  I’m saying this to you as much as I’m saying this to myself.  And not as a sermon but as a friendly blogger who happens to love good tea.

I truly wish I could say this tea was awesome.  I can’t though.  But I can suggest plenty of other great teas from their vast collection.  It’s been a while since I wrote about them, but here are my previous reviews of their fun and beneficial teas.

I’ve been having this tea myself to much more positive results.  I will get to this one in time as I have a lot of positive things to say about it.

For where you can find their teas click here.  And you can order online as well.

hollyjollyvillage

It’s been a great holiday and my decorations are still up  When I will take them down is when I’m ready to let go and move on to the next thing.  But this is likely the end of the Christmas-themed posts unless I magically come across something inspiring in the next few days.

hollyjollytree

There’s still this day by the way.

I hope you all had a stellar holiday and look forward to sharing more great tea experiences in 2017.

Stay healthy,

Ideen

 

 

With Ease

yogi

With all the stresses in our lives, sometimes you just need a tea to bring you back to a harmonious and peaceful place.   So I go with the aptly titled, Calming, from the wonderful Yogi Tea.

I’ll admit, I haven’t been my usual relaxed self and after I had a cup, I started feeling inner peace and joy. It might be a placebo or it might be the natural ingredients.

Nevertheless,  I feel good and I am much more comfortable typing this out as opposed to a little while ago.  I can feel the stress fading away.  If I drank this all the time, would I always be this content?    I’d like to think so.

funfacts

The flavors have been presented to you, and they all bring something to the table.  In reading the synopsis of this tea, I didn’t know Lemongrass and Gotu Kola (which I had not heard of until trying this tea) had such a powerful effect on our nervous system.   The Licorice really gives it a flavor.  And I’m not usually a fan of Licorice, in tea or candy form, but it works to perfection here.  And the lavender feels so good on my tongue and taste buds.

This is one of the higher tannin teas I’ve had in a while, and that comes as no surprise.  Yogi has some of the best and most popular teas in the world today.   If you’d like to see a previous tea of theirs I reviewed, click here.

LoveSerenityease

It’s more than the hot goodness that Yogi provides – it’s also the spiritual aspect displayed on each and every box.  Most of the big tea companies don’t do this (nor do they have to) and this spiritual message is what sets Yogi apart.  It just makes the tea drinking experience that much more meaningful.

Each bag has a message of love, hope, compassion, and other superlatives that are all full of goodness and positivity.   How can you not love this?  In this moment, it makes me want to better myself as a person and bring love to everyone around me.  These guys have done their job!  And a masterful one of that to boot.

BeautLeaves

What can’t be forgotten is how amazing this tea is. How beautiful are the leaves inside?  I just had to get a close up.

Fin

The finished product leaves an impressive color that is too beautiful for words.   The pictures and my writing won’t do it justice.   I strongly recommend this tea to anyone who wants to relax, feel good, or just drink something wonderful.  I promise you that you won’t be disappointed.

Stay awesome.

Best,

Ideen