tea love…and a giveaway

cityhippyfarmgirl

It’s dark outside when the steaming kettle flicks off. Pouring the hot water into the little green pot, I wait, and I stretch. Then pour again. This time into my empty cup. The smell of the deep spices hit and I slowly breathe them in. Add a little milk and take a tiny satisfying sip.

My morning, my chai.

This is how I love starting the day. With most of my day being fairly unpredictable, I like the very start of my day to be predictable. A simple ritual of a small pot of chai.

When we were in Byron Bay at the end of last year. I came across a tea at the local markets. A tea, that I instantly fell in love with. Loose leaf, and chunky just the way I liked it. It was the best one I’d found so far. I’d never considered that I was fussy with my chai tea, but it turned out, actually I was.

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I wanted loose leaf, (tea bags really are a needless waste of resources when you are drinking at home- plus it tastes better.)

I didn’t want my tea to look like someone had just scraped the bottom of the barrel, lining my teapot with a vague tea smelling dust.

I wanted spices in there and I wanted to see them.

I didn’t want an excessive amount of annoying packaging.

I also wanted to know my chai tea was fairtrade, organic and local (as much as possible).

(And I certainly didn’t want any chai powder or syrup… pffft!)

So there it was, all in my cup. I had found exactly the kind of tea I had been looking for. Simple happiness.

cityhippyfarmgirl

Branching out into some of the company’s other tea and I wasn’t disappointed. Each one that I’ve tried is lovely, really lovely.

Skin Glow– while I can’t attest to my skin actually glowing, it certainly felt good drinking. With ingredients of spearmint, calendula, burdock, echinacea and red clover- how could it not be beneficial?

cityhippyfarmgirl

Floral Love– this one intrigues me. I don’t know what it is, but I’m completely drawn to it. I can’t keep my nose out of the box. It’s got beautiful soft floral tones to it, without being too heady and over powering. It’s subtle enough to draw you in, making you want more, and to take another sip. This tea really is, a late summers picnic with a loved one- balmy warm weather, with a laden picnic rug, sitting in a field of beautiful flowers. If there was ever a tea that could be a soft finger being traced up an afternoons sun kissed arm, or tiny kisses at the base of your neck…well, this would be it.

(Rose petals, chamomile, lavender, rose hips, calendula, corn flower.)

Immunity– Was well timed after a run of three separate family illness over the last three weeks. I was taking anything I could get hold of.

(Echinacea, rose hips, ginger, licorice root, nettle, lemon balm.)

cityhippyfarmgirl

Calming– Goodnight kisses for small kids tucked in bed. Book by my side, and an exhalation. Mentally and physically letting go of the day and all she held. Long slow sips…

(Chamomile, peppermint, lemon balm and lavender.)

I love supporting companies like this. Knowing where my shopping dollar is going is always incredibly important to me. A local small family run company that offers ‘all natural, certified organic and fair trade tea, chai, naturopathic blends and herbal tissanes.’ The teas are designed by a naturopath, are hand blended and packaged, the company give one percent, believe in sustainability and…

…above all, it’s just really, really lovely tea.

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If you would like to try some of Love Chai, Love Tea‘s blends. I have some different blends to give away to three people. To win, I would love to hear what your favourite brew is and the setting in which to drink it, (real, imagined or perhaps a memory?)

Have you sipped chai at first light as the sun rose over the Himalayas?

Is it a quiet moment to your self sipping green tea before the family get up?

Do you wish you could go back in time- sharing a cup of hot sweet black tea with your grandmother aboard a Canadian bound ocean liner?

Paint me a picture, tell me a story.

(Giveaway ends 12pm Sunday 26th May)

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EDIT- winners are… Amber, Anne, Rose

cityhippyfarmgirl

Love Chai Love Tea

and where to find it if you would like to buy some.

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37 thoughts on “tea love…and a giveaway

  1. Having a cup of tea is the way a lot of people I know like to start the day. So sorry to hear of all the illness in your family. At this time of year we do need to start building up our immunity with things like echinacea. (I won’t enter the giveaway because I don’t drink tea!) xx

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  2. I would love to be able to sip hot black tea with ,my father who has been gone a long time. He absolutely loved tea.

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  3. Wise Women’s Blend, by Egmont Herbal Teas, bought in New Plymouth, New Zealand. It contains red clover flowers, lemon verbena and sage (so simple) and is helpful for hormone balance and tastes so smooooooth and full. It has to be brewed in a teapot given to me as a present from a sister in law and drunk from a china cup and saucer, sourced second hand at great length by my mother in law as a gift, usually in a peaceful moment alone between garden duties on a weekend. It is amazing when you find a tea that is right for you just at that time. It has also inspired me to grow lemon verbena amongst other herbs to make my own special peaceful moment in a cup, always a special cup with a memory attached, I have a cabinet full!

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    • Lovely Alison. I love all the associated memories and meaning with your teapot, and cups. Having all that in the hand just makes it taste so much nicer…to have a whole cabinet full? Wonderful.

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  4. I am so relaxed reading your morning ritual – thank you so much for sharing it! I use my early mornings for exercise but you have almost turned me to starting a tea routine of my own 🙂 I do know what you mean about chai tea needing to be done well. Syrup and powder is just…ick. I can’t stand them in chai lattes either which means I rarely order chai lattes when out. Your mix sounds wonderful.

    As for my favourite brew and favourite setting? A pot of chai tea – and a big pot, all to me! – done well, had alongside a delicious pumpkin salad, whilst sitting inside and warm and overlooking gardens and water – that is a great memory. It was at Launceston Tasmania and the indoor and tea-related warmth were in gorgeous contrast to the outdoor wintry temperatures!

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  5. I love the sound of these teas. I really wish I could sit and enjoy a cup with you. My favourite tea time is in the afternoon. I put a few jasmine buds into my Chinese tea mug, let them brew and slowly sip to mark the change from work mode to home mode 🙂

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  6. Ahhh, stretch, and snuggle for a moment under my down comforter, the chime of my alarm, reminds me that the waking moment has passed!
    It is chilly, the fire is but a memory, and now I must stir the ash, for a few small coals. The kettle on my woodstove is still warm, teasing me, ah,…there they are, a few embers, wanting dry tinder to flame. Soon, the fire is crackling away, it wont be long now…
    I step outside and look to the east, rose and cobalt blue outline the mountain top. Brr, I step inside, and welcome the warmth of the cabin, cheered by the fire.
    Steam rises from the kettle, um, lets see, a little Market Spice, fragrant, tingling scents of orange, cinamon, clove and tea leaves. Yes, good choice, to clear my head of sleeps leftover fog!
    The day is rising, and so are the chooks, their morning song ringing in the day, bright greetings, all’s well, hello new day!

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  7. At 58 I’m new to tea. I’ve been a coffee drinker since about age 20, perhaps a bit too much of a coffee drinker at times! In recent years I’ve cut out the afternoon and evening coffees because they made me hyper, (morning hyper is OK). I substituted first with black leaf tea with a drop of milk (tea macchiato I call it), then a few months ago I began exploring herbal teas. Now I have a little collection, at this very moment I am drinking white tea with rose — admittedly from a tea bag but that will change as I find good sources of loose leaf.

    I do have a loose leaf chai tea and DH got me a tea ball for that.

    The setting for drinking it? Five days a week at 3pm in our little art shop in a tiny 120 year old tenement house with the afternoon sun slanting in the tall narrow western window. I have my (secondhand) bone china cup and saucer. And what am I doing in this romantic evocative setting? Why entering transactions and invoices on the computer of course! 🙂

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  8. I would say my favourite brew is the one I make when I’m sick: A handful of fresh thyme from the garden, a big spoon of honey from the farmers’ markets, a squeeze of lemon and steamy hot water.

    There are other teas I love, ones bought from little shops or that blackhole that is T2, but for the sheer relief in my throat and lift in mood, I can’t go past that old concoction.

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  9. My favorite tea moment is curled up on the lounge before bed with my love, my hubby. The kids are (hopefully!) asleep, the night air has become colder, the school clothes are (sometimes, but often not) laid out for the next day. It’s time to stop DOing, and sit and BE, with a nice hot cup of peppermint tea to warm our hands and start the quiet conversation.

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  10. Your morning Chai ritual sounds like pure bliss!
    My favourite tea is a cup of chamomile after I feed, bathe and put my daughter down to bed. I put my feet up for the night, with my snuggie and a hot cup of chamomile to relax my stresses away 🙂

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  11. When my daughter was younger, [she is now 33] my favourite cup of tea was at 8 oclock in the evening after I had read her a story and tucked her into bed for the night. It was probably the only cup of tea that I was able to drink through the day that was guaranteed to be hot!

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  12. I wanted to mention how much I like your first photo, it is really nice. I’m a tea drinker…I have two cups of Earl Gray each morning in bed while I catch up on blogs. 🙂

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  13. I am in the UK and until recently was horrified by the thought of any other tea than good old British Yorkshire Tea, served very strong with a touch of milk (we call this ‘builders’ tea’). But I have just started drinking chai tea and also fennel tea and ginger and lemon tea in the afternoon when I need a bit of a lift. It is nice to ring the changes, but my heart still stays loyal to my builders tea especially first thing in the morning xxx

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  14. I have such a fond memory of the special ritual with my Nan when I was a little girl… she would pour a little of her sweet milky tea from her cup into the saucer, where it would quickly cool enough for me to sip it straight from the saucer. A wonderful childhood memory. 🙂
    These days I’m more of a liquorice & peppermint girl!

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  15. What lovely pictures, Brydie! And I love all the stories and types of tea- thanks so much for opening this up – a venue for sharing the love of tea.
    My favorite tea is Darjeeling- I love the clear flavor and distinctive yet mellow flavor. I would be happy to drink it anywhere with anyone- but my favorite memory
    goes back about 20 years to the tea parties my sister and I shared and hosted. We experimented with recipes, invited everyone we knew, added specialty and green and herbal teas to our menu and enjoyed the rituals, recipes, friends, and general good will that the teas would generate. We set up a whole “tea menu”, assembled a table set up in front of a roaring fire, got out a vintage tea set and took pictures and submitted them to Victoria magazine to win a prize ( which I cannot remember)- I look at these pictures and somehow I am back there, sitting with a cup of hot tea, sampling scones, buns, sandwiches and biscuits with my beloved sister.

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  16. My favourite tea is raspberry leaf tea which brings with it the memories of preparing for the birth of my children. It’s not so much the taste of the tea (I never felt it had much flavour) but knowing that I’m in the last few weeks of pregnancy, that soon my baby will be earthside.

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  17. Love your beautiful tea cups! The best cup of tea I ever had was a delicious reddish black tea in Budapest at a Turkish restaurant. After I finished my lunch, I ordered two pieces of baklava (it’s my favorite), and the man who owned the restaurant brought me a complimentary cup of this gorgeous tea. I added plenty of lemon and a brown sugar cube and enjoyed it with my baklava at the window of the restaurant, looking out onto the Hungarian street. It was the single most memorable cup of tea I’ve ever had. Yum!

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  18. My favourite tea is Dilmah Earl Grey. The tang of bergamont lifts it from the ordinary and the scented steam clears my head as I hold it tight and sip slowly. My favourite time of the day to drink tea is that first cup in the morning, as I greet the kiddies, the cat, and turn on my tablet to see what’s going on in the blogisphere. Most mornings I laugh and cry with my ‘imaginary friends’ Celia, Lorraine, Charlie and others, and share my cup of tea with them too- whether they realise it or not 🙂

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  19. Every morning I have a Twinnings earl grey tea, it can be hot, luke warm or cold, it doesn’t matter, but I must have this, my day does not officially begin until the last drop is finished. Even when I was pregnant and my body rejected tea and coffee, all three times, I persevered with my morning cuppa 🙂 Every evening I must have another cup of Twinnings earl grey tea, but this is different. I have to know that the children are asleep, not just quiet, and yes, sometimes I may not not sit down with my tea until 10pm, but when I do it must be steaming hot so that I have to take tiny sips, that is the perfect end to my day 🙂
    On another note, I made a chai from the green kitchen cookbook yesterday, it was lovely and my flat smelled amazing afterwards!

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  20. I love your photographs of the tea. Just reading your post made me take a deep breath, relax and wish I had a cup of almost any of those. For me, mornings are about coffee and the heady smell of ground beans and steamy water. Afternoons are for tea. A break from the routine. A chance to sit and ponder, inhaling deeply the musky scent of soaking tea leaves, then sipping slightly sweet, milky English Breakfast which revives the spirit. If I have a small piece of homemade shortbread along with it, all the better.

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  21. My morning ritual involves a giant cup with a chicken on it that I found at the local op shop. Every thing I drink out of this cup tastes better than drinking out of any other cup. In fact I am a little like a toddler when someone thinks they are being nice giving me a cup of tea ,but in the wrong tea cup.. Then I say ,’I want MY cup!’
    The setting – between 5am and 6am when the children are still asleep, I am drinking hot tea out of my chicken cup. It is blissfully quiet and I am watching the sun rise over the dam while the sky turns a dusky pink.This is where I think about the day ahead but in a quiet unpressured way. When I hear my teenager’s alarm clock go off , I know that the ‘real day’ has started and the cup gets put down , ready for another quiet time just like this one.

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  22. Perhaps my most enjoyable cups of tea were from when I went camping in my youth in the Cairngorm Mountains in Scotland. Standing around the tent in the early morning, the mountains in the background, with a plate of bacon and eggs and a strong cup of tea in an enamel mug. Water from a little stream boiled on what is now an old fashioned pump-up Primus stove. Just writing these few lines brings back such enjoyable memories of going off into the mountains with our little tents and enough food for 3 or 4 days at a time and then coming back to base camp to re-stock before going off again in another direction.

    However, my most memorable cup of tea was when I was in Taiwan on business. My agent took me to the business premises of a friend of his, and being the honoured guest I was offered tea – ceremonial style. A large kettle of water was boiled in readiness. The teapot, not much bigger than a regular teacup, was put in a bowl with tiny eggcup sized cups made from paper-thin bone china put around the teapot. Boiling water was then poured over everything. After a few minutes the cups were stood on the table and the water thrown out. As I was the honoured guest from England nothing but the best tea was used. This was from a large canister – probably 2 gallon size – taken from a shelf full of similarly large canisters on a shelf high on the wall above head height. The little teapot was packed solid with tea, filled with the boiling water and then immediately emptied. This was evidently to wash the dust off the tea-leaves. Then the teapot was re-filled with water, put back in the bowl and again filled with water to prevent the little teapot cooling down too quickly. After some time the strongest blackest tea I had ever seen was poured into the tiny cups. Now, this is the memorable part. It was so strong and so astringent that I just could not swallow it. My throat just refused to let me. However hard I tried I just could not get it down even with loads of sugar added. It was so embarrassing.

    David

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    • David, I’m so intrigued. I can’t imagine what that tea tasted like being so strong. I’m almost tempted to jam pack a teapot just to see what the taste might have been like. What a wonderful experience to have, (even if it was a little embarrassing.)

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  23. Two favourites : chai, warm and milky at the end of the day and Ceylon tea (leaf) in a teapot at tea parties with my little boy. Favourite memory? Tea parties with my much loved nana after she picked me up from school, all warm and cosy and filled with love.

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  24. Pingback: loving….words and pictures | Cityhippyfarmgirl

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