Quick! What's the first thing you do in an emergency? I don't know about you but one of the first things I do is put the kettle on. A kneejerk response from my British upbringing. Someone comes to the door. Put the kettle on. Distressing news. Put the kettle on. Something to celebrate. Put the kettle on. Four o'clock? Breakfast time? Dinner time? Seven o'clock? Bed time? Yep. Put the kettle on. All to make tea. I bring tea to bed, drink tea before I've had a bite of breakfast. Putting the kettle on and making a cuppa is the most comforting and welcoming thing I can think of to do for someone.
For me, a cup of tea suggests a pause. A time to reflect and sit back. A time to listen. Or talk. Or read. Or write. Or to stare out the window at the birds and the clouds.
Friends and family know about my love of tea and shower me with gifts of tea and all things tea related. I have no complaints. Hell, I completely indulge my tea fascination myself and seek out new blends and replenish old favourites.
The second most comforting and welcoming thing I can think of to do for someone is to offer them a varied choice of tea. The photo above shows a basket full of tea from under my painty table in my studio. Only a portion of the tea in that space. In the kitchen a double cupboard over the sink, several cannisters on the counter and the top shelf of one cupboard all hold tea. Um...yeah...perhaps that's excessive. Lol. The most embarrassing part of all that though is that I rarely have plain old orange pekoe.
I take my tea plain and very weak. 'Gnat's pee' Dad calls it and family remind each other to just show the hot water the teabag for my cuppa. To me, it tastes bitter if it steeps too long. I am so NOT British in that regard.
For our wedding, my hubby and I gave samples of a special tea blend away to guests. My lovely step-daughter, Carole, arranged it all and asked us for our favourite kinds of tea. For me jasmine (also earl grey in a regular restaurant) and chai for my hubby (who isn't much of a tea drinker surprisingly). So it ended up being 2 parts jasmine to one part chai. Delicous! The blend and little sachets to give away were created by iHOT (International House of Tea) which is my local go-to tea place. They also make the scrumptious Thunder Bay Tea. I prefer this in black tea but it is made in green tea, white tea and a fruit tsane too. A perfect gift for out of town family and friends. (I'm not affiliated or getting paid by them. Just a big fan!)
I've also recently discovered other local brands of deliciousness: Tea of Fortunata (I love Eleanor's wild rose tea especially and as I know her, I can envision her handpicking the tiny rosebuds and rose petals herself. I also love all the delightful names and storoies she weaves around her teas...you could say her tea company which is named after her grandmother is steeped in meaning. Hahaha) and Boreal Forest Teas (Loon Song...OMG. Gifted to me by Carole for my birthday this year, it is a heavenly bedtime tea.)
One of our more memorable LUNA (Lakehead Unfinished Novels Association lol!) writing group meetings (at least for me!) that took place in my home involved tea. I bought everyone a different flowering tea...the flower opened up in hot water. I don't know about anyone else and I don't remember anyone's critiques but I do remember everyone's excitement in watching their personal tea flower bloom.
Ahhh, tea. If you enjoy it, do yourself a favour and put the kettle on. i would do it for you if I could.
Wishing you time to reflect and sip some tea.
Welcome! I'm Sue Blott: a writer of all things, a poet at heart, mom, wife, daughter, step-mom, grandma, tea drinker, tai chi-er, mystic, artist, dreamer...and now a blogger! This is my world.