I don't quite remember when I fell in love with tea but I do remember the most special moments of me drinking tea. I was eighteen years old and I went to live with my biological mother for four months. I had just met her months earlier and it was awkward for both of us. She and her ex-husband lived a very quiet life in Boulder, Colorado. He was a professor at one of the universities and she was a housewife. After years of drug addiction and being in and out of jail, she deserved the break. I was homeless so she and her husband agreed to let me come live with them. Each evening my mother and I would find a spot in the living room with a cup of tea and a book.

Now, years later, I'm a self proclaimed tea expert. I start each day with a wonderful English Breakfast tea to get me going. As the day progresses, who knows what wonderful tea I will crown queen. But for sure, I have at least three cups of tea a day. And yes, when I can, I have tea everyday at about 3:00 P. M. I love to invite my friends over for tea and cupcakes and so far everyone thinks it’s a delightful experience. I am always in search of the best blend of tea. Yes, I’m a tea snob, I prefer loose tea but I do like some bags also. I have learned not to judge a book by it’s cover. Some bags can be quite nice. And yes again, any Diva knows, what you drink your tea out of is very important.

Tea for me is a way of life. It's wellness for the mind body and spirit. Here, I will explore every expect of tea possible, with a high concentration on wellness. I will review the best teas, the best places to have tea, the best ways to brew tea, the best tea accessories, what tea goes best with what foods, and the list goes on and on. I plan to share my passion for tea with you. And I've been told, nothing I do is ever boring so be prepared to go on this tea journey with me.

RLT Collection Tea Ball Frosted Clear Beads!

Mint Medley by The Persimmon Tree Tea Company

About This Tea:

Until recently I had never drank Peppermint Tea made with loose leaves. And Honestly, I will probably never go back. The freshness of loose Peppermint Tea cannot be denied. When I open the can of Mint Medley, From The Persimmon Tree Tea Company, I feel as if I stepped into a garden of peppermint leaves. It is a perfect blend of organic peppermint and spearmint leaves grown in the US.

Mint Medley has become a favorite and I find myself reaching for this tea tin almost everyday. It is great for on-going nausea. The health benefits and endless. It relieves muscle aches, headaches, migraines, stress. And now that it feels like someone is sitting on my chest and I have a mean cough, I'm sure it will help to relieve some of this congestion in my chest. Mint Medley has been in my tea cup more than any tea as of late. It has really helped with my winter cough, congestion related to this bout of pneumonia. You can read my full review on The Persimmon Tree Tea Company Mint Teas.

RLT Collection AIDS Awareness Tea Ball!

Welcome to my world of books! As an pre-teen books changed my world. I fell in love with the writers of the Harlem Renaissance period and the more I read the more I wanted to read. The fiction of this period was powerful and empowering all at the same time. It spoke to my own degradation and gave me hope for a better tomorrow. It gave me purpose for my own life and the courage to fight the good fight and never surrender.

I love to read! Inside a book I escape into someone else's life. There is something wonderful about turning to the next page of a wonderful story. Something intoxicating about the smell of the book and the story it brings to life. Reading brings me joy, and these days with my health in the balance, I find solace in my books.

I spent hours in my bedroom sequestered with the door closed reading the classics from the Harlem Renaissance, Hughes, Larsen, Hurston, Wright and Baldwin. Books became my escape and my salvation. The fiction of this period was powerful and empowering all at the same time. It gave me purpose for my own life and the courage to fight the good fight and never surrender.

Reading is the one thing that the pain of my life could never take away from me. It was the thing that helped to make it better. And even today, living with AIDS, books continue to be the safest place for me. It’s the one thing that belongs to me that AIDS cannot take away from me.The RLTReads book club will be books that I choose. It’s me sharing a part of me with you that has nothing to do with AIDS. It’s actually in spite of AIDS.

The RLTReads book club will be books that I choose. It’s me sharing a part of me with you that has nothing to do with AIDS. It’s actually in spite of AIDS. I have read hundreds of books from many different genres and I will pick the best of my reads over the years. I warn you, it will not be exclusively white or black, male or female, fiction or non fiction, it will be all of them.

I’m so excited and I’m grateful to everyone who wants to be a part of this venture. We already have 110 Book Club Members. You can email me @ RLTReads@raelewisthornton.com. The Twitter hashtag is #RLTReads. We can make this book club as wonderful as we want to make it. Who says that Oprah has to have the only ownership to a wonderful book club?

This Month We are Reading In My Fathers House by E Lynn Harris

Read along and join our discussion July 19th at 7 pm CST

For more Tea with Rae "Vlogs" Click here to visit her youtube channel

Friday, March 19, 2010

Legacy: Generation to Generation

 I was looking quite chic in my gray and white ensemble (or so I thought), as I walked into the newest hot spot in Chicago's South Loop, Three Peas Art Lounge. As my eyes perused the mostly 20-something crowd, I started to feel uncomfortable. Clearly, I had not been given all the information about this event. I felt soooooo out of place. I took a quick glance around the room. No one seemed to have noticed me so I turned for the door. As my hand hit the knob I heard someone call my name, “Dammit!” I mumbled. “I’m stuck and inappropriately dressed. Not Cute!” The woman who had invited me sashayed over and guided me in. Within minutes I was being introduced to this young African-American woman who possessed an abundance of energy. My eyes went from her fabulous blue blouse, straight down to her Red Pumps. “Her too?” I thought. This was a Diva’s worst nightmare and I knew it. Among the sea of red, my gray shoes were out of place.  For Real... For Real... “Clam yourself girly,” I kept saying.

 I took a deep breath as my host introduced me to the lovely Luvvie. I was dying on the inside with embarrassment, but I remain poised as Cathy began talking. “I don’t know much about the younger women doing HIV work these days,” my hostess explained, “but it seems to work. These girls wear Red Pumps to bring awareness to HIV/AIDS and it’s catching on fast.” Her explanation only increased my anxiety. Not only was I inappropriately dressed, but HIV is my business, my passion, my ministry and I had never heard of the Red Pump Project. “Am I that old? Am I that dated in my work?” I asked myself. My head became a bouncing board for the conversation going on inside of me. “This is not good,” I told myself. I shook it off as Luvvie reached out for my hand. Her warmth seemed to provide some comfort and reduced my anxiety. Within minutes other young women from the Red Pump Project surrounded me like I was a celebrity. I didn't know them, but they certainly knew me. They were ecstatic that I had come to their event welcoming beauty blogger Afrobella to Chicago and raising money for the Chicago Women’s AIDS Project, all at the same time. I loosened up and began to mingle explaining along the way that I didn’t even own red pumps. By the end of the event I knew that the Red Rump Project was a gold mine in the work of HIV/AIDS awareness. I could feel it deep in my bones and, honestly, in these last seven months of knowing them they have proven me right.

  Their unwavering commitment to HIV/AIDS Awareness is undeniable! Within a year’s time they have signed on forty Ambassadors in twenty states. These young women are empowering women with information that will save their lives. The Red Pump Project has sparked a new generation of AIDS Activists that I am proud to know. Actually, I’m grateful that God has allowed me to live long enough to see this new level of commitment among young African-American women working on this critical issue. With AIDS being the number one killer of African-American women between the ages of 24-35, it is fitting that women in the hardest hit age group would fight for their peers. This novel idea of placing Red Pumps at the center of AIDS activism has caught on like a wildfire.

Many of the women in Red Pump are bloggers and have successfully taken their activism to Twitter, Facebook and their individual blogs. Recently, they put out a call for 500 bloggers to sport the Rock Red Pump logo on their blog, bringing awareness to HIV/AIDS. In just 50 days they have over 200 bloggers on board.

This March marks the first year anniversary of the Red Pump Project and they are celebrating their anniversary with an inaugural fashion show: Rock the Red: Bold, Fashion, Awareness. I am proud that they have chosen to honor me as the Ultimate Red Pump Rocker. The event will be held on March 25, 2010 at Bottom Lounge, 1375 W. Lake St., Chicago. I hope that you will join us as we celebrate both my life and the anniversary of the Red Pump Project. I will be there all night Rockin’ my fabulous Red Pumps (I'm prepared this time!)
blog comments powered by Disqus
Clicky Web Analytics