Saturday, October 30, 2010

Blog Tour Goodness

To all of you wonderful people who found me through Mrs. B's 31 Days of Halloween....
Hello and Welcome to my little corner of the interwebz.

My name is.....well, lets just skip the formal introductions here, shall we?? I am the Tea Witch and I love all things tea.....and I started this blog to share my love for it with the world and possibly learn some new things on the way.

Feel free to go through some of the older stuff on the site (I say older...but it's not that old really). Pull up a chair and pour a cup....enjoy your visit to the Tea Closet.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Sweet Memories 1

As Samhain approaches I am thinking more and more about the people that I have loved and lost in years past. I want to share a few memories I have of them. I wish I had pictures to share of some of them...they were beautiful and wonderful people.

First and foremost...My Grandfather.

Oscar Rudy Walker. He was always like a living version of Santa Claus for me :) The man was awesome.

He was the guy who used to sing Puff the Magic Dragon to me after making up stories for me when I slept over at his house.
He would sit on the floor with me and play with my Barbie dolls and eat Double Stuf Oreos.
We would go shopping at the mall together and he would buy me new clothes for my Barbies.
We watched Saturday morning cartoons together.
We would walk his black lab, Pepper, together every evening. There was an abandoned amusement park near his house and we used to talk about the old fashioned roller coaster (it was the kind with the wood tracks guys) and how much fun it probably was.
There was one Thanksgiving that I was at his house and his wife at the time made dinner....the turkey was so dry that nobody could eat it. He leaned over to me and made a crack about how it was the consistency of sawdust. Made me giggle so hard. We ended up having the side dishes for dinner...and Grandpa ordered pizza :)
He always sent me the same birthday card every year....signed "Love, Grandpa and Pepper" It was a light blue card w/ flowery pink writing on the front and inside. There was a picture of a little black cat on the front. Surrounded by white and pink fabric.
There was one outfit in particular that I remember and will forever associate with him....blue jeans, a red flannel shirt and those tan work boots (like the ones worn by construction crews).
On the nights that I stayed with him...I brushed my teeth with his toothpaste. Pepsodent....and he would sing the jingle while I brushed.
Old Spice....the cologne that he wore.

Grandpa was (and still is) my Father Figure. He will forever be the best "dad" I could have ever had. Not a day goes by that I don't think about him.....not a day goes by that I don't miss him.

I still eat Oreos and have a fascination for old roller coasters. I love black labs and evening walks. The smell of Old Spice makes me smile. I have a dragon tattoo and have named him Puff. And now, that I have my own holiday traditions, I worry about my turkeys being too dry. So far that hasn't happened.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tea Time Tuesday....Yes, I'm tardy :)

So...I've been dealing with this wicked cold and was too tired to even attempt a blog yesterday. I went to bed way early and slept like the dead. I'm feeling a little better today....throat is less sore and my head doesn't feel like it's stuffed full of cotton batting. However, I still can't breath. I detest not being able to breath. It makes me grumpy.

In light of this awesome illness that has taken over my immune system...I'm dedicating this weeks Tea post to teas to drink when dealing with cold/flu/or other onslaughts to the immune system.



For sore throats: Slippery elm and licorice teas are wonderful soothers. Marshmallow root tea can also be used as it's an anti-inflammatory. Combine all three herbs for a powerhouse tea to help with that sore throat.

For breathing issues: Black teas (oolong, etc) and even coffee are used to open up the lungs airways as they contain compounds that help to clear out mucus. Caffeine is an excellent bronchodilator. Chamomile tea is used as it has many useful properties...it's an anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic, etc. Combine w/ Rose Hips for extra Vitamin C and a sweet taste.

Peppermint: Used to induce sweating to help break fevers.
Ginger: Helps to relieve nausea, as well as muscle aches and pains associated w/ the flu.
Thyme: antiseptic properties that help to heal infections.
Rosemary: contains disease fighting compounds.
Eucalyptus: cools inflammation and eases congestion.

The 5 herbs above can be used not only in teas but can be combined into a pot of boiling water and used as a vapor tent.

Remember to use a natural sweetener like agave nectar or honey for your teas.

What teas do you use to help relieve the symptoms of colds/flu/etc.??

**Please do your research on these herbs and make sure they don't react to any regular medications you may have to take. Also make sure that you aren't allergic to anything before consuming. Double check with a doctor if you are unsure.**

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Shakti Poems

There is a goddess.

There is a goddess inside me who has nothing to prove. She does not need approval. There is no question of her worth. She is Divine.
There is a goddess within who does not seek peace. She is peace. She is the vibrant expression of everlasting joy. She is Divine.
I have an inner devi who is not afraid to die. For her there is no death. There is no fear. She is Divine.
And she is all of nature, every grand sequoia, every delicate moth. She is every snake that slithers sending shivers up my spine. She is Divine.
She is every human spirit, every woman, every man, the laughter of a baby, every heart and every hand. They are all Divine.
And she is wonder. She is life. She is heaven. She is earth.
She is all of the seasons and all of the stars. All she sees, feels, hears, and knows is love.
She is love.
Through her, there is no suffering. There is nothing to hide. And in her, there is wisdom. There is nothing but truth.
She is the constant creation of change. Her womb germinates and pullulates pure beauty as infinite potential.
She is the mystery. She is emerging and receding. She is waking and she’s dreaming.
Her vision flashes lightning and her song is the pulsing in my veins.
It is the pulsing of the tides.
She enters the party wearing the jewels of power, compassion, and insight. Her dance makes the wind blow. It makes the river flow. She is Divine.
She is a wild warrior for freedom, the sweet soft whisper of freedom, the yearning, the burning, the spontaneous recognition of Divine.
And when I celebrate, I celebrate her. And when I meditate, it is on her.
And when I breathe, it is she who breathes me; for she is me. I am Divine.

~r.r. Shakti

I am.
I am who I say I am. I am only what I want to be. The friends who corroborate my story, are the ones who have heard it from me.
And by hearing, I also mean seeing. And by seeing, I mean that they know.
‘Cause the friends who know my true story, will want to see me grow.
So to (wo)manifest my Vision, to listen and really be heard:
I will claim my Inner Power with every thought and deed and word.
Don’t worry so much if I scare you.
I won’t worry, I won’t be ashamed.
Don’t fret if I appall you.
I promise I will not be tamed.
But I will invite you to join me. Infinite. Radiant. True.
I am exactly who I claim to be and goddess, so are you.
~r.r. Shakti

Friday, October 22, 2010

Fun little quiz type thing...


Your result for Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz...

You Are a Grace!


You are a Grace -- "I need to understand the world."

Graces have a need for knowledge and are introverted, curious, analytical, and insightful.

How to Get Along with Me
  • * Be independent, not clingy
  • * Speak in a straightforward and brief manner
  • * I need time alone to process my feelings and thoughts
  • * Remember that If I seem aloof, distant, or arrogant, it may be that I am feeling uncomfortable
  • * Make me feel welcome, but not too intensely, or I might doubt your sincerity
  • * If I become irritated when I have to repeat things, it may be because it was such an effort to get my thoughts out in the first place
  • * don't come on like a bulldozer
  • * Help me to avoid my pet peeves: big parties, other people's loud music, overdone emotions, and intrusions on my privacy

What I Like About Being a Grace * standing back and viewing life objectively * coming to a thorough understanding; perceiving causes and effects * my sense of integrity: doing what I think is right and not being influenced by social pressure * not being caught up in material possessions and status * being calm in a crisis

What's Hard About Being a Grace
  • * being slow to put my knowledge and insights out in the world
  • * feeling bad when I act defensive or like a know-it-all
  • * being pressured to be with people when I don't want to be
  • * watching others with better social skills, but less intelligence or technical skill, do better professionally

Graces as Children Often
  • * spend a lot of time alone reading, making collections, and so on
  • * have a few special friends rather than many
  • * are very bright and curious and do well in school
  • * have independent minds and often question their parents and teachers
  • * watch events from a detached point of view, gathering information
  • * assume a poker face in order not to look afraid
  • * are sensitive; avoid interpersonal conflict
  • * feel intruded upon and controlled and/or ignored and neglected

Graces as Parents
  • * are often kind, perceptive, and devoted
  • * are sometimes authoritarian and demanding
  • * may expect more intellectual achievement than is developmentally appropriate
  • * may be intolerant of their children expressing strong emotions


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Weekend Wrapup

Ok....so I totally flaked on blogging this past weekend (and yesterday too). Friday was uber-busy. There were errands run, laundry done, lunch eaten at a cute little German place. The eclairs were as big as my head and just delicious. I couldn't finish one...and that's saying something :)

Saturday was spent nursing my poor chest...I woke up and felt like it was in a vice. It hurt to breathe. My friend K brought over her nebulizer and while I was using it, I seriously wondered if giving up smoking was actually worth it. I've had more problems being able to breathe since I quit than I did the entire 19 years I smoked. And I've only been a "non" for about three weeks or so. It sucks.

Sunday I worked...and went and watched football. Yes...it's important. And yesterday I worked, visited a friend and checked out a new (to us) desk that I'm going to buy for the hubby. I don't like his...it's all wobbly. Came home, ate, played on FB for a bit and died shortly after midnite. Had to recharge the batteries seriously bad.

So here we are....Tuesday morning and it's overcast, rainy, and chilly. I'm loving it. I will be back later this evening with the Tea Time Tuesday post. Still have to put some finishing touches on it. Have an awesome day!!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Blog Action Day: Water and my appreciation of it


October 15th is Blog Action Day. A day that bloggers across the world unite about a common topic in order to bring awareness to the general public (ie..anyone who reads a blog somewhere) about an important issue. This year's topic is: Water.

People everywhere are blogging about Water. They are blogging about the fact that it's not as renewable of a resource as everyone seems to think. They're blogging about ways to reduce, reuse, recycle, and conserve (not an 'R', I know, but still an important thing). The fact that we have it at all is a wonderful thing. Especially given the amount of pollution that goes on in the United States alone. Not too long ago I stumbled upon a website that actually shows pictures and graphs of the pollution in our oceans. It's disgusting people....truly. I think it's unbelievable the number of people in the world that have just ceased to care about our environment. Our true home. It's a sad situation all the way around.

Today....I will blog about Water. However, instead of blogging about the typical topics surrounding water, I will be blogging about my appreciation of water. My deep-rooted love of the life-giving fluid. For the simple fact is....I love water.

As most of you know...I'm a Pagan. I was born under an Air Sign (Gemini) but for pretty much my entire life, I have always been attracted to water. It's an awesome thing. It can be calm and steady (pools, lakes, the water in your cup) or it can be a destructive force to be reckoned with (storms, the ocean, etc). I find it all amazing. Water is like a woman....you're always in for a surprise and you never know when it will change.

At least once a month, I like to go sit by a body of water and soak in the quiet, the solitude, and the spiritual vibes I get in order to renew and refresh myself. On a daily basis....showers. They are wonderfully refreshing. I treat everyone like a mini spa day. On a hot day...a cold glass of ice water is like heaven on earth. On a cold one...a nice cup of coffee or a steaming pot of tea is sheer bliss. I can make a leisurely swim in a pool become a state of euphoric ecstasy. I love water that much and it breaks my heart that people don't respect it.

So please, the next time you go to toss that plastic bottle, cigarette butt, food wrapper, newspaper (the list goes on and on), or anything else onto the ground, remember that you are slowly but surely killing the environment and polluting our oceans. Unless there is some change in this world there will be a day when the children of your children will not be able to enjoy the beaches around the world as we do. They will be too polluted to go into and enjoy. And that would be a damn shame.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Interesting websites....

One with a giveaway that I think is pretty awesome.....

Mrs. B is doing her thing with the 31 days of Halloween. Today she is hosting a giveaway from Shades of Midnight. Here's the post...

http://www.confessionsofapagansoccermom.com/2010/10/on-14th-day-of-halloween.html

Go to Giveaway #2 for Shades of Midnight. It's an awesome sight folks...I could seriously go broke in that shop.

Some other websites that I think you might find interesting....

http://blogactionday.change.org/

http://www.myearth360.com/ **This looks like a neat little shop for more earth friendly produts.**

http://icountformyearth.wordpress.com/


I hope you enjoy browsing these sites. Especially Mrs. B...she's got a ton of fun stuff going on :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I feel the earth....

Move....Under my feet. LOL. I totally stole that from a friend's FB status update.

I woke up this morning to the wall behind my bed vibrating and a distinctive loud thudding noise that sounded like something hit the building wall. I thought it was just the maintenance men in the apartment under ours, as they have been making noise down there for the better part of two weeks.

I was wrong. Shortly thereafter, I started getting text messages from friends asking if me and the hubby were ok. Considering I wasn't even out of bed yet, the ringtone of my phone quickly started to annoy me. I told everyone we were fine...then decided to ask why four people had asked me that in the space of 5 minutes. Find out we had a confirmed 4.3 magnitude earthquake this morning. How awesome is that.....lol.

It's a significant quake for this area....the last one they had like this was a 5.something in the 1950's. Still....I used to live in Japan so it's no big deal for me. I lived through bigger earthquakes that were actually the result of shockwaves and aftershocks from other quakes. I was less than impressed and just slightly annoyed that I was woken up by the Earth deciding it needed to reach up and say hi.

Yay Wednesday.

Two more days and I finally get a day off....seriously hope the boss lady doesn't schedule me six days in a row again. It hurts.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Tea Time Tuesday...Favorite add-ins

Ok my tea lovin' friends....here's the third (and hopefully last) attempt to become a dedicated blogger to one of my favorite things in the world.

Most tea drinkers add things to their tea...

Milk
Sugar
Honey
Lemon
Rock sugar
Cream
Sweetner (ie. Splenda, Nutrasweet, etc)

Just to name a few.

Tell me....what are your favorite things to add to tea? Does it change depending on the type of tea you drink (herbal, green, black, etc)? Or are you one of the wonderful people who drink your tea as it is (leaf and water)?

Inquiring minds want to know.....

There is no way to happiness

Or is there..?

1. Realise consciously that the only thing you really want is to be deeply happy.

2. Understand that happiness is an inner experience. It is inside you, or nowhere! Therefore nothing and no one can give it to you.

3. Look inside for that happiness, and cultivate it consciously, doing (as much as possible) only things which make you happy!

4. Accept your mistakes, failings, and so on… don’t resist them, it will slow you down (in other words, if you have a bad day, and you really struggle to be happy, don’t worry! Tomorrow is another day: every day you get better and better in every way)…

Most people spend ALL their time trying to either: seek pleasure, or avoid pain.
This is because we remember pain in the past. And we choose (obviously) not to repeat that pain. And we imagine pleasure in the future (also based on our memory of it in the past), and choose (obviously!) to repeat it.

However, memory (past) is not real. It is just an idea. It has no substance. Two people remember the same thing differently – it is not fixed. So our memory of pain is also not real. Trying to avoid pain is like running away from your shadow – it’s pointless.

And the same can be said for the imaginary pleasure – imagination is not real, in the same way that memory is not. So, most people are living in the past or the future; not really here!

Happiness is not outside you. It is not in the new car, the beautiful partner, the lottery which you might one day win - actually studies have shown that amongst the highest risk groups of suicide are those people who suddenly get rich!

It is either within you, or it does not exist in a meaningful way. It is an experience. Our motivation for avoiding pain and seeking pleasure is that we really want to be happy. But we didn’t stop to think – where and when is happiness? Is it in the future imaginary pleasure, or the past remembered pain?

If we really think about that question, the only possible answer is – it is here and now, inside us. Or not. But it cannot be anwhere, or ‘anywhen’, else!

So, if happiness is what we want, and happiness is HERE AND NOW, what to do about it?

BE HAPPY! Do what makes you happy! Follow your JOY! Let go of all else. Buddha said: “There is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way.”
Is it easy? No, not if, like me many years ago, you have a habit of doing pretty much the opposite. But if we practice it, it gets easier and easier, like anything.

And imagine a world (this is what the imagination is really for!) where everyone did only what made them happy… every person would be PRESENT. That means that there would be no room for jealousy, resentment, anger. All the negative emotions are in the memory or the imagination of pleasure and pain… they DO NOT EXIST here and now. To be present; to be here now; is to experience peace, love, and simplicity: true happiness.


**I took this article from elephantjournal.com. You can find the full article here: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2010/10/there-is-no-way-to-happiness/
I love this site and once in a while I find articles that I just have to share with the world. Normally I share them through FB...but I think I'm gonna start sharing them here too.**

Monday, October 11, 2010

I can't wait.....

Until I have normal internet service again. I can't wait to be able to go online and not want to beat the computer screen in frustration because my server "went offline" for the millionth time in about six and a half minutes. I can't wait until I'm able to use my laptop again. Right now it's just a big, flat, silver paperweight/cat bed. Irritating as all get out. Can we all say Grrr...Argh!!!!!

Ok....rant done. Now to put the heavy objects out of arms reach so the computer screen remains intact and the husband won't have to kill me in the morning.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Ramblin...

I've noticed that weekends are pretty quiet in blog-ville. And I'm ok with that, I think. I mean...it makes me feel ok with missing a day and then realizing that I've commited myself to making a blog post a day for the rest of the month....shortly after midnite. See...there's that "gung-ho at the beginning" thing again. I'll consider this a warm-up weekend or something :) Yeah...that's it. A warm-up.

So, I've got some things rumbling around in my brain. Different things I want to talk about, random things that pop into my head. I'm just trying to figure out exactly what order (if any) I want to put them down in. And then try to figure out how to work in some season related stuffs in there too. My blog brain is a mess. I'm working on getting that organized though...maybe a notebook. Apply pen to paper before fingers to keyboard. Not a bad idea, if I do say so myself. :)

Ok....I'm tired. Off to bed with me.

By the way....you should run out and get a Pumpkin Spice donut from Dunkin Donuts. They are friggin fabulous!!!!! They are...just sayin :)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Crick in the neck

I woke up with an evil crick in my neck. I'm seriously hoping it does not attempt to impede my day with all of the evil pain it is attempting to spread up into my head. The most evil thing about my neck cricks is that, if they don't pop and straighten themselves out, I could end up developing a migraine. That would be bad. Very bad.

Off to get ready for work.....will try to think of something good to write about for a blog later today.

**I'm counting this one for yesterday as I didn't have time to get to it.**

Thursday, October 7, 2010

I am inspired

I was catching up on the blogs that I stalk and came across a post by Bella at http://bellafoxglove.blogspot.com/ titled "It's Time...." and was smacked over the back of my head with a cosmic 2x4. Don't you love when that happens??

I am one of the most lazy individuals I know. No, seriously...I am. Don't get me wrong...I have great ideas and generally have a gung-ho attitude at the beginning of something. What I lack is the ability to follow through. With anything. Take this blog for example...I started it because I have a passion for herbs and a love of tea. I figured...take my passion and spread it's wonderfulness to others. Yeah...we see how far that's gotten. I dig the whole idea of yoga. I have a few books about the subject, a cool purple mat and even some nifty (way comfy) pants from Old Navy designed specifically for the act of yoga. Ask me when the last time I did yoga....go ahead, ask. Over a year ago!!

I recently stocked my fridge and pantry with all sorts of healthy food options. The most I've done is crack open the bag of broccoli and cauliflower so that I could devour a container of hummus. I love hummus. There is still salad, apples, kiwi, squash and all sorts of stuff in there. Unopened. I got things so that I could actually cook meals at home. I've gone to McDonald's, Sonic, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Taco Bell. **On a totally unrelated side note...McD's has these ultra cool color changing straws...they are wicked cool**

I bought an herbal supplement/multivitamin to help boost my metabolism and I took them for a week.

I have a written list of things I want to blog about this month...none have been looked at twice. I started this NaNoBloMo event that I found last night (consider this my first post ya'll) and signed up for NaNoWriMo for next month. There is a part of me that dreads all of this.

I don't know what my issue is...I don't know if it's sheer laziness, procrastination or a fear of actually doing something all the way through. Or if it's a combination of all of the above. But something has got to give.....doesn't it? I have to get off my butt and do something with my life. I'm 30 for crying out loud...shouldn't I have something to show for it? I should...and deep down I know the only thing holding me back is myself. I'm scared to death of actually succeeding at something. I have no idea why....but I am.

So....the buck stops here (or something like that). Baby steps...let's see if I can get through the rest of the week with the blog posting and we'll go from there. Wish me luck....I'm gonna need it. No, seriously...I am.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Happy Birthday Wishes

Well...I'm officially getting old. My kiddo turned 10 this August and today my little sister turns 19!!!! Someone kill me.....just kidding :) I think it's awesome :)



I'm planning on being more active in blog world this month....October is such a cool month so I must share my perspective of awesomeness with you. There will be recipes, remembrance blogs, some cool stuff for Halloween/Samhain.

On a side note...I've decided I want a vanity plate. It will read Twitch :) Saw one today that said Teacup...it was awesome. I can only hope it didn't refer to some dog thing. LOL

I hope you all have a great weekend!!!