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

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

TeaWithRae: London Tea Room!

The Royal Wedding was buzzing in America. Don't be lying, all of us were a tad proud to see this young couple looking very much in love. Admit it, Americans are fascinated with Great Britain. Well, admit it or not, America was once a British colony and much of our foundation is built on their paradigm. Well, me for one, think I'm a distant cousin cause I simply love reading about court life. I've read all of Philippa Gregory's historical fiction books on the Queens of England. And my love for tea is scary.

Well, I wanted to be a part of the festivities! I wanted to celebrate right along with the Prince and his lovely bride. So when I landed in St. Louis to speak at Harris Stowe College, I hit the ground running. Fellow blogger and friend Danyille picked me up at the airport and we headed straight to a wonderful tea house.

Tea houses across the country were having viewing parties of the wedding and I wanted to be a part of it all. I asked Danyille to hook a Tea Diva up and she did just that.

She found this wonderful tea house, The London Tea Room, and it's actually owned by Brits. They opened this tea spot because they wanted the combination of good loose tea and the casual tea experience you often find in Britain. Just a simple spot to have good tea. 

Now that was a pleasant surprise and the owner, Jackie James, was wonderful. She had never heard of me. She doesn't really tweet, but I'm hoping to change that. The extent of her social media is Facebook. But she welcomed us with open arms.

This is a family establishment through and through. The Tea Room is connected to her father's furniture store where he makes beautiful replicas of Duke Earl Spencer's furniture

I swear I wanted to take every single piece home with me. How wonderful would this be to store my RLT Collection bracelets? So we got there on the tail end of the viewing party. Most everyone came at 5:00 a.m. to have tea and watch the wedding together. 

After looking around the spot and taking pictures, Danyille and I settled in for some tea. We had Earl Grey Lavender with a spot of milk, actually half and half because we wanted the full British experience in honor of the royal wedding. Most British take milk in their tea. It enhances the flavor of black tea, which is the most popular in Britain and my favorite.

Now I have never been a fan of milk in my tea, but with this particular Earl Grey it is simply divine. This is one of the best Earl Grey Tea's I have ever had!! This black tea has the traditional bergamot flavor combined with the French tradition of adding lavender. The flavor pops!

I loved this tea so much that on the way to the airport headed home I had my soror take me to get one for the road. Which was crazy because I had some in my luggage. And you'd better believe I've had at least two cups a day since this weekend.

For those living in St. Louis, this is an authentic British Tea Room. I fell in love with their scones and tea cakes, which of course are very British.

But their sandwiches were great too. I had ham and cheese grilled and Danyille had a three cheese grilled. And the tomato soup was divine. It's a wonderful spot to have lunch or just take a break and have a spot of tea. They have free Wi-Fi too.

But those of us who don't live in St. Louis, don't worry. We can't have their scones every day but their teas are sold online. I was delighted that Jackie sent me home with tea to review. So stay tuned as I give you the scoop on their teas... In the meantime, check them out online and on Facebook. I am happy to add the London Tea Room to my Tea With Rae project!

The Earl Grey Lavender is an absolute winner!!
Post Script: I'm coming back to St. Louis for the Show Me The Blog Conference Oct 21 & 22! I'm the keynote speaker on the 21th. For those of you involved in social media/blogging who live in the Midwest this would be a great chance to fellowship and learn from other blogger's. Also, for those who live in the area Save the Date... Oct 20... RLT Event Tweet-Up in St. Louis.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Clicky Web Analytics