In order to feel at home here and to understand what this Tea House is all about, please see my very first post at http://teatimereflections.blogspot.com/2009/09/heya-tea-mates.html

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Sunday, February 27, 2011

"healing teas"


From: Amazon

TEA TIME!!

Tea I'm now sipping: Chamomile Citrus form Mighty Leaf. What **tea** would you like to be served?

A few months ago when I was doing my first internship, I stopped by Teavana on my way back from work to sip some of their free samples of tea. Although I was initially only there to get my dosage of free stuff (just because, as a college student, it's hard-wired in me to seek every opportunity to consume free products no matter how trifle!), I was too tempted to get a box of cookies infused with one of their popular teas (unfortunately, they do not sell this anymore but they recently started to offer a thinner version of it which I still haven't tried). To further deviate from my initial purpose of visiting the store, a book about medicinal herbal teas caught my eye. This book, which I eventually bought along with the cookies, is called Healing Teas: How to Prepare and Use Teas to Maximize Your Health by Marie Nadine Antol.

Before I say a bit more about the book  (as this entry isn't meant to be a long, exhaustive review about the book itself), I would like to first talk about my interests in medicinal herbs in general.

When I was in high school back in Dubai still trying to decide what I wanted to major in college, I had initially followed my parents' wishes of medicine. At a certain point in my life when I really wanted to manifest more of my autonomy, my interests switched to pharmacology and then herbology! I guess I was always fascinated about natural medicine used by different cultures, especially the sort my grandmother would use (specifically the kinds used in both Gulf Arab states and Southern parts of Iran) and which is hard to find much information about (and it was only recently that I had bumped into something like this which includes how each herb can be used and a brief historical background of each).

As mentioned in one of my older posts in this blog, I connect with tea at a personal level. Therefore, finding a book that combined my interests in both herbal medicine and tea was a blessing. I find that a lot of sources on herbal medicine tend to be very biased and may even employ pseudo-scientific methods to make their exaggerated claims without considering the potential existence of the "placebo effect" (click on the link to be redirected to an interesting video about this phenomenon). However, one thing that I find unique about this book is that, it not only includes the traditional medicinal usage of tea from different parts of the world and how to make your own whether as a drinkable tea or to be used externally, but also a brief info on scientific tests that either confirmed or found mixed results regarding each of these teas' healing properties and potential side-effects of very strong ones.

Do you yourself also use teas medicinally?  Would really appreciate it if anyone chooses to share their experiences and knowledge here!

From your Tea Mate,
Reema B. :-)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

cooking blog suggestion: "from the hearth"


From: From the Hearth

TEA TIME!!!

Tea I'm sipping now: Tetley Masala with milk (WHOLE milk of course...no disrespect intended for anyone but I never understood the point behind low-fat or skim...they taste like water!! >,< Haha, as I type this now, I suddenly remembered how an ex-roommate of mine, who was a pro-skim/low-fat milk drinker, told me that whole milk is more disgusting as it tastes like fat!).

No worries **tea mates** and **guests**, I now stop my non-sense ranting about milk and continue among the many ritualistic traditions of this **Tea House**: What **tea** would you like to be served?

Ok, now to the main point of this blog post!

I was just chatting with Azaraksh, a good friend of mine, via Facebook whom I haven't seen for quite some time now. During this conversation, she shared a link to a cooking blog she recently started called From the Hearth. For now, it is a pilot project but she plans to commit to it more fully after she graduates this semester.

The blog mainly specializes on Persian cuisine. Her writing style combined with the images used in each post will certainly guarantee a delightful mouth-watering experience! This is why I decided that I wanted to share this blog with you, my fellow **tea mates** and **tea guests**, in hopes that you may try savoring such dishes as you sip **tea** here in the **Tea House** ;-)

After visiting From the Hearth, please let me know in the comments below about the dishes that you'd like to experiment for yourself or have already experimented and how it all went!

From your Tea Mate,
Reema B. :-)

Friday, February 11, 2011

"mini-poem"

From: link


TEA TIME!!!

Tea for the post: Bigelow Earl Gray Tea flavored with bergamot. One of my favorite teas which I usually sip in between my Monday, Wednesday, & Thursday classes when I have too little time to head back to my dorm and too much time to not do anything. What **tea** would you like to be served?

After a long time of not posting anything here (and still surprisingly gaining new followers!! Would like to welcome all of you to the **Tea House**!), I have a very random question to ask.

Do you guys have any idea if there is such a thing called a "mini-poem" (not necessarily a haiku)? I've once heard of "mini-fiction" which I'm interested in experimenting with sometime (please do check out their facebook page here as well).

But then again, I also wonder, what exactly makes a "poem" in general? I feel like now a days there's so much more flexibility in writing one that you could label anything as a "poem". Would you consider the following sentence below a "poem" or simply "poetic"?


"I am a beating heart among other hearts in the concert of life and death"

I made that one up years ago and suddenly remembered it today. I'm just really not sure what would I call it...can I call it a "poem"??

I guess we cannot limit the meaning of this "label", not even in the sphere of literature and creative writing. Personally, I feel like life and death are expressions of the Divine. I feel like "living poetically" means to be conscious of the "poetry" surrounding you.


From your Tea Mate,
Reema B. :-)

P.S. Forgot to mention that I've recently created a Twitter account and I'm such a noob in Twitter! >,< But I'll see how it goes...feel free to follow, I've added a button on the right side of the blog.