Tag Archives: Herbal tea

Courage at Twilight: Mom’s Mint Tea

Mom enjoys her breakfast sitting in her recliner: a bowl of dry Quaker granola, a glass of cold milk, and a tall glass of hot unsweetened mint tea. She asked me once to buy more mint tea at the grocery store.  Along with her standard mint, I brought home a variety of other herbal teas, including berry blends and lemon ginger.  But she did not care for them, and opted loyally for her favorite: mint.  Both spearmint and peppermint sit on her cupboard shelf.  I took the other blends to work, where I enjoy the berry and lemon-ginger flavors, sweetened, of course, while sitting at my desk.  But Mom likes her stimulating mint tea unsweetened.  “Ah, this is so good!” she sighs in satisfaction as she sips.  I am growing mint in my Aerogarden.  After six months of growth, I cut much of the mint off, dried it in a warm oven, ground it in my parsley grinder, wrapped it in cheese cloth, stuffed the cloth into the tea infuser, and steeped it in just-boiled water.  Six months of plant growth made a single tea bag, a weak one at that, and I supplemented with a commercial tea bag from the box.  But I think Mom is right: hot mint tea is simply wonderful.

 

(Image by congerdesign from Pixabay)

Cup of Tea

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Photo by Liddy Mills

I sat recently with a mug of scalding water in one hand and a tea bag in the other, dipping the bag repeatedly in the water, watching the water darken as the herbs steeped.  Mmm.  How aromatic was that chamomile (“cidreira” in Portuguese).  I looked forward to sipping that sweet brew!  The process of boiling the water and steeping the tea–of transforming crushed, dried herbs into a delicious, soothing beverage–caused me to ponder the processes of life and transformation.  I thought about how we are similar to crushed, dried herbs–the dust of the earth, if you will–and about how, through life’s challenges and choices, we can transform our character, our soul, into something better and more pleasing.  I contemplated God’s purposes in sending us to this mortal sphere, giving us rules and guidelines for our success, and nurturing us quietly every arduous step of the way.  Please enjoy my poem “Cup of Tea” about this process of becoming.

CUP OF TEA

The Maker holds me
by a string, steeps
and dips me in the scald
until I become
the water
and the water becomes
me, stirred and stirred
with small cubes of sweetness
and drops of smoothing cream,
to be held in warming palms,
to be smelled and sipped
and savored.