Showing posts with label tea. Show all posts
Showing posts with label tea. Show all posts

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Reviewing Twinings Chamomile, Honey & Vanilla Tea

I absolutely love my tea which is why I thought I would review another tea staple in my life - Twinings Chamomile, Honey & Vanilla.

Reviewing Twining's Chamomile, Honey & Vanilla tea - a relaxing blend
Photo from Pixabay
I am a big fan of Twining's teas and have actually written about their peppermint tea previously.   As much as I enjoy a good coffee, tea is the staple drink of my life.

Every day starts with a mug (I don't really do tea cups unless I have a pot to top it up from!) of Arbonne tea and when I get home from a busy day at work nine times out of ten I'll have a mug of Twinings Chamomile, Honey & Vanilla tea.   I usually also drink this tea before going to bed, except for the odd nights I made myself a Milo.

Chamomile as a herb is known for it's relaxation properties and I do remember the first time I tried it, it was made from actual dried chamomile flower (like the photo above) and it had a back taste that I really didn't like at all.   I have tried various brands several times over the years both as a loose tea and in a tea bag form and I haven't been able to stomach the after taste of the Chamomile.

A couple of years ago I tried a Spiced Apple and Chamomile blend from Twinings which I didn't mind so when the Twinings teas were on special again I thought I would try the Chamomile, Honey and Vanilla - I haven't looked back!

I don't know if my taste buds have changed as I've gotten older or if it's the addition of the honey and vanilla flavours, but I thoroughly enjoyed this blend and, as I've said, it is now a staple in my life - in fact I think I have four boxes in my cupboard as I write this!

If you want a caffeine free tea (complete with relaxing properties) to drink before going to bed I can really recommend this one.

There are quite a few tea drinkers that write for Review This Reviews and you can check out their reviews right here - Tea Related Reviews.

Have you tried this tea blend before?






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Wednesday, January 22, 2020

The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane - A Review

If you have been reading our reviews, you know that January is Tea Month!  It is also part of the Chinese New Year celebrations that will be happening all around the world on the 25th of  January.

The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane Book Review

It's also time to share a new book that I truly enjoyed.  The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane caught my eye on two counts.  One, I love birds, so was interested in the address and the second was the ambiguity of the title.  Who goes around being known as the "Tea Girl" and why?


The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane Book Review


Lisa See, the author has extensive knowledge of what is happening in the areas where China has taken over the lands that once belonged to some really isolated tribes.  Such are the Akha, that  lived in the high mountainous regions of Laos, Myannmar, Thailand and Yunnan province in China. 

                                                           Map courtesy of Google Maps

As with many indigenous tribes, they are unaware of the political struggles or the ramifications of being overtaken by another government.   They farm and cultivate their land for their own use. Daily life is difficult enough without worrying about politics.  Rice, tea and poppies are their main crops.  Opium, derived from their crops is sold to the outside world for medicines.  They themselves have used opium for medicines for centuries.  Tea is the other common denominator.  They grow tea and cultivate the leaves of trees that are hundreds of years old.  This tea is sought after by tea aficionados from around the world.

They are a land of people who have stayed together and lived according to the laws and customs of their "tribe".  They have their own language, yet they are encouraged to learn Mandarin and leave their language behind. Education is minimal unless they show a talent for learning.  Then maybe they have a chance at a better life.  The question is, "Who's ideas of a better life will they follow?" 

Each child can confirm their lineage for 7 generations.  This is one of the most important things they know for sure.  Girls and boys can recite their lineage and will do so when they find a mate.  The elders of the community will give their permission to marry, based on that lineage!  There will be no marriages allowed that are too close in family ties.

Image from Wikipedia 


This story and it's people grabbed my attention and held it right to the very end.  I was fascinated by their customs and horrified by some of their practices too.  What really caught my interest though was how the people, because of their beliefs did things that we would consider so unacceptable.  The Akha, like many of the Asian peoples, have a profound wish that their first child be male. Because of China's one child law,  many girls are given up for adoption.   

Over the years, these girls have been adopted into American, Canadian and European households.  The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane finds herself caught up in a cultural tug of war.  Her adopted parents are caught up in it as well.  She does not look like them, She will never look like them!  Yet, her parents love her as if she were born to them like any other child.  

Her adoptive parents go through all the trials and tribulations involved when you have a child that is "different".  As many parents are aware, whenever something is NOT just so,  many questions are asked and need answers.  Yes, their child is adopted.  No, they don't know anything about why she was given up for adoption.  No, they are her parents and they love her unconditionally.  Yes, she asks questions all the time.  No we don't have the answers to all her questions.

What makes this story interesting is that bond between the birth mother and the daughter that she no longer knows.  I don't want to give anything away from this story, I want you to go and pick up the book and read it for yourself.  


My Conclusion & Final Thoughts


I learned so much about the Akha people and I also learned a lot about myself.  It was easy to put myself into the characters of this book.  What would I do?  How would I react?  How would I feel about being given away?  Where do my loyalties lie?  These are all questions you will find yourself asking as you are reading this book.

There are no right or wrong answers.  For the Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane, there are lots of different answers and many roads that could be taken.  See how she deals with the way,  and the road,  her life has taken.  I promise, you will learn something about yourself in the pages of this book.







Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Wednesday, January 15, 2020

A Review of My Favorite Teas from Bigelow and Celestial Seasonings

A Review of My Favorite Teas from Bigelow and Celestial Seasonings
Image © Barbara Radisavljevic


Hot Tea Warms Me up During Every Season


I am a tea drinker. Although I tried, I could never learn to enjoy coffee. As I read my friend and fellow contributor Louanne's review on hot tea, I realized I had a few favorite hot teas, as well. The ones I drink on a daily basis are pictured above. You've probably seen them in the tea aisle when you shop -- unless they are missing. I've found I can't always rely on my local stores having them in stock when I need them. Here's what I do to make sure I always have the teas I drink daily on my shelf. And here's how I drink them.

I Break All the Rules

I'm a tea heretic. I make my tea a pot at a time and reheat cold tea in the microwave as needed. When the pot is empty, I make another one. I first boil a full kettle of water in my Cuisinart Aura Kettle. I bought it and wrote that review in July, 2018. It's still serving me well after 18 months, and I expect it will last forever. 

While I'm watering for the water to boil, I prepare two of my five teapots by putting the bags in. I know I'm supposed to wait until the water boils and rinse out the pots with boiling water, but I don't. I still think the tea tastes good. I'm not a purist.

When the water boils, or slightly before for green or herbal teas, I pour it into my two prepared pots, one which makes about four cups and one which makes about two. If it's afternoon and my decaf teas are running low, I set up the larger pot with herbal and/or decaf bags. I make an herbal tea in the smaller pot, usually one my husband likes. If it's evening and my green tea is running low, I set up the large pot with my Honey Lemon Ginseng Green and the smaller pot with a decaf tea. I normally make four pots a day for the two of us to share. 

Morning Tea

Why I Like Celestial Seasonings Honey Lemon Ginseng Green Teas with White Tea for Smooth Taste.
Image © Barbara Radisavljevic


My preferred morning tea is Celestial Seasonings Honey Lemon Ginseng Green Teas with White Tea for Smooth Taste.  The teabags come in pairs. I use four bags in my larger teapot. This tea has just enough caffeine to ease me into my day. I like its mild taste with just a touch of sweetness. I prefer my tea with no sweeteners or milk. As you can see, the teabags are not sealed from the air. They have no strings, tags, or staples, either. This is because Celestial Seasonings wants its products to be sustainable and not put anything unnecessary into the landfills. That being said,  these bags are not as easy to remove from the pot as the less sustainable ones with strings and tags. 

Since I drink a pot of this tea every day, it goes fast. Each package is almost a week's supply for me, and I don't like to run out of it. So I order it in 6-packs from Amazon and use their Subscribe and Save plan so that I will get an even lower price and will be sure I won't run out. 
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Late Afternoon and Evening Tea


My preferred teas for late in the day are pictured in the image at the top. Again, I break the rules. I mix the two. I've always liked the mild orange-spice Constant Comment from Bigelow. It used to be the only tea I drank for several years after a friend told me about it. I sometimes also drank Bigelow's Lemon Lift, another great black tea. But I know I should avoid caffeine late in the day.

Now I use the decaf version of Constant Comment late in the afternoon and evening and mix it with the Celestial Seasonings Honey Vanilla Chamomile. I mix two bags of each in the large teapot. As you can see, Bigelow does seal their tea bags, and they do have tags and strings.

The Celestial Seasonings Honey Vanilla Chamomile is often out of stock where I shop, so to be sure I have it when I want it, I order it through Amazon's Subscribe and Save program, too. The chamomile helps relax me before bed and the delicate honey and vanilla flavor blends well with the orange and spices in the Constant Comment. Have you experimented with mixing tea flavors yet?

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Constant Comment is popular enough that I can usually find it where I shop, but sometimes they don't carry the decaffeinated version. Not everyone carries the Constant Comment Green Tea, either. That's why I also use Subscribe and Save to get those. It usually saves money, as well.

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Whenever and however you enjoy your tea, you may want to try one or more of the teas above that have become my favorites. And if you're not feeling up to par, you may also want to try a medicinal Life Style Awareness Tea. Learn more about all kinds of tea from Cynthia Sylvester Mouse, who started this blog so that all of our contributors could share their reviews in one place.



Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Saturday, January 11, 2020

Did You Know That January is Hot Tea Month?

I thought I'd review our love of tea here on Review This Reviews and also share with you the teas I enjoy during my day.

Enjoying a cup of hot tea as January is hot tea month
The tea pictured is Arbonne's Detox Tea, click this link to purchase.

The authors on this site do seem to enjoy their hot tea and you can check out Cynthia's hot tea article to learn more about the different types of tea available.

I used to enjoy several mugs of black tea a day and an occasional green tea, but these days I enjoy herbal teas - which tea lovers will (correctly) say aren't actually teas, but herbal infusions.

Which teas do you prefer to drink?   I would love to know in the comments.

My Daily Teas - Whatever Month of the Year it is!


I start every day with a mug of Arbonne detox tea which I absolutely love.

If I'm meeting a friend during the day I will choose peppermint tea as my drink of choice as it's available at most cafes these days.

I used to have peppermint tea every afternoon, but these days I only drink it occasionally as January in Queensland, Australia (where I live) is pretty hot so I tend to drink a fizz stick instead.  Sometimes I do feel like a hot drink and I will switch between my usual peppermint or a Twining's Spearmint and Peppermint tea..

Other teas I may have are from Arbonne's holiday tea range (I'll probably enjoy them more in our winter months though).

At night I enjoy Twining's Chamomile, Honey & Vanilla tea.   You may have noticed that I am partial to Twining's teas, my husband even brought me a couple of their cold infuse teas to try, but this is hot tea month so we'll talk about them on another article.

More Tea Please!


Let's have a look at what some of the teas our other Review This contributors enjoy:

Cynthia reviews Aveda Comforting Tea which sounds absolutely delicious.
Barb enjoys Lifestyle Awareness teas and reviews a couple of them for us - Immunity Now & Serene Slumber.

Of course you also need to be able to make tea which brings us to Barb's Tea Kettle review.

I have written a review on gift ideas for tea lovers which enjoys some gorgeous tea pots and fun tea infusers, check that out here - Best Gifts for Tea Lovers.

So if you're not a tea drinker already, why not try a few different ones this January in honour of Hot Tea Month?   If you do (and I hope you do) then be sure to come back and let us know what ones you've enjoyed.

Of course there's one thing any cup of tea is good with and that's a great book!


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Saturday, July 13, 2019

Reviewing Arbonne Essentials Herbal Tea

Arbonne Essentials Herbal Tea - Arbonne's Detox Tea
Arbonne Essentials Herbal Tea photo by Louanne Cox
I was first introduced to Arbonne's Essentials Herbal Tea as part of the 30 days to healthy living program which literally changed my life.   Since finishing the 30 days program I have continued to drink this tea every day for two reasons: it tastes good & it's good for me.

This tea is part of Arbonne's Essential range and is just called herbal tea here in Australia, but in some other countries it goes by the name detox tea as it works on the eliminatory organs.   Let's have a look at exactly what is in this tea -



The combination works really well with the flavor as dandelion root can be bitter on it's own and yet the combination of licorice root adds a sweetness and the peppermint stops that sweetness from being too strong while adding a refreshing flavor.   Basically it works to create a delicious tea that is lovely to drink on it's own.

Personally I drink mine in the morning as I just like to have a hot drink first thing, but as it's a caffeine free tea many people choose to drink it before going to bed.

A little tip from me - I drink a mug of this tea and I will keep the tea bag and make two mugs out of the same tea bag which means that my box of 20 will last me 40 days if I drink it just once a day.

Dandelion Root - What Are The Benefits


Dandelion's are highly nutritious and have been used for centuries,   Dandelion root is dried and used as a tea, in fact the first time I tried it the root was made into a granular form and you made it up like instant coffee - I found it way too bitter on it's own (mind you I was still a teen with a very sweet tooth!).

It is high in a soluble fibre called inulin that supports the growth and maintenance of healthy intestinal bacteria which are essential for your gut health.

It's been promoted as helping to support your liver for many years (one of the reasons I was first introduced to it years ago was as a liver tonic).

There are many other benefits often cited for dandelion root including anti-inflammatory properties, anti-oxidant levels, helping the digestive system, the list goes on.   I personally believe it's been included in the tea because it helps support and protect the liver as well as aiding gut health.

Peppermint Leaf - Benefits


As you may already know I love peppermint tea and used to drink it every afternoon.   I will admit I don't drink it every day now, but I do still have it regularly and it is always in my cupboard.   I talk more about it below.

Why drink peppermint teaWhy Drink Peppermint Tea
I love the taste of peppermint tea, but that's not the only reason I drink it, peppermint tea also has a lot of benefits including aiding digestion and helping with concentration which is why I enjoy it after lunch when working.

Parsley Leaf - Health Benefits


I first tried parsley leaf tea in my early 20s as it was touted as being great for kidney health (it's use as a diuretic doesn't appear to have been tested by scientists however so I'm not sure where I got my information from).   It was very easy to make, but at the time I didn't really like the taste and my husband wasn't very impressed with me using the parsley in my tea instead of him using it as a garnish!

It turns out that the dried form of parsley (used in this tea and other commercial herbal teas) contains 17 times more antioxidant properties than it's fresh form (reference)

Parsley is high in antioxidant nutrients and is also believed to help regulate blood sugar levels and hormone levels.

Elder Flowers - A Traditional Heath Tonic


I must admit I don't recall ever trying elderflower tea although I had heard of it as it was traditional health tonic drunk in the UK.  I may very easily have been given it without remembering.

This tea is traditionally drunk to keep colds and flus at bay and a study published in the Online Journal of Pharmacology and PharmacoKinetics in 2009 backed up the effectiveness of elderflowers in treating the flu.

It appears that the anti-oxidant levels in elderflowers combined with it's anti-viral properties work really well to keep the immune system healthy.

This could be part of the reason why my immunity has been really good for the past 18 months since taking this tea daily.

Sweet Fennel - The Health Benefits


I first came across sweet fennel tea when I was working in a Health shop in my 20s, we used to recommend breastfeeding mothers drank it if their babies had colic and we had very positive feedback on it's effectiveness with the local midwives regularly sending new mothers to us.

With this experience I'm not surprised to find that it's known to improve digestion, is anti-spasmodic and can relieve symptoms of IBS.   It also helps keep your liver and kidneys healthy while boosting immunity, reducing inflammation and balancing hormones.

Licorice Root - Sweet & Healthy


Did you know the Egyptians used licorice root tea as a cure-all concoction?   This tea has been used for centuries by the early Europeans and the Chinese for it's health benefits.

Today licorice root tea is used to promote digestive, respiratory and adrenal gland health and you will find it included in herbal tea blends that promote both bronchial wellness as well as cleanse and detox.

Summing Up My Daily Herbal Tea


I have taken this tea every day for the past 18 months except for 2 weeks when I was on holiday (I think it's good to take a break occasionally when you're regularly using herbs).   I have made a number of lifestyle changes and have attributed my results to using the whole range of the 30 days to healthy living program that Arbonne have.

When I look at the individual benefits of the ingredients in the herbal tea I can see how they have applied to me.   In all honesty I don't believe a tea alone can do all this, but in conjunction with other changes I have found the following has happened to me personally -

My hormones are more balanced (I am going through menopause and the symptoms (crankiness, night sweats, hot flushes, etc) have abated.

I have an autoimmune disease (Rheumatoid Arthritis) and haven't even had a little flare up, plus I've been able to go back to the gym with no problems for the first time in decades.

My immune system has dramatically improved - I had been getting sick constantly before starting this tea, I can joke now that someone just had to sneeze in a 10 block radius and I'd get the flu, but it actually did feel like that was happening at the time.

There are lots of other things I could say, but I will just mention one thing if you want to try the Arbonne Essentials Herbal Tea and you don't like it Arbonne have a 45 day money back guarantee, so try it for a couple of weeks and if you don't like it send it back!


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Sunday, June 9, 2019

Thermos Stainless King Travel Tumblers & Travel Mugs Review

Image: Thermos Stainless Steel Travel Mugs & Tumblers for Home, Office and Travel - copyright 2019 Margaret Schindel
Today I'm reviewing my favorite Thermos insulated stainless steel travel cups. I use mine every day, whether I'm at home, at work, or on the road. Staying hydrated is important to everyone's health and wellness. If you're on a keto diet or low carb diet, you need to drink even more water to help avoid damage to your kidneys. So, to help me drink enough water daily, I keep a Thermos Stainless King Vacuum-insulated Stainless Steel Travel Tumbler and a Thermos stainless steel hydration bottle next to me so I can take sips of water and hot or cold decaf or green tea throughout the day and refill the containers as needed.

Several years ago, my husband and I decided to replace our motley collection of plastic and probably BPA-laden water bottles and travel mugs (most of them free swag from employers and trade shows) with high quality, vacuum-insulated stainless steel bottles and mugs that had the features we care about.

We really liked our new Thermos stainless steel hydration bottles, so we ordered two Thermos Stainless King Travel Tumblers to try out. We loved them so much that we ordered three more, one for my husband's office, one for my office and an extra for home. So, now have five of these wonderful stainless steel travel cups, in Electric Blue, Cranberry, Midnight Blue, Raspberry and Matte Black. (The Matte Black cup isn't in my photos because my husband keeps it at his office.)

Prefer a Travel Mug With a Handle?

The Thermos Stainless King Travel Mug is identical to the travel tumbler except it has a handle.

Thermos Stainless King Travel Mug 16 Ounces - Pine Green - photo courtesy of Amazon.com

Why I Love Thermos Stainless King Travel Tumblers and Travel Mugs

Large Capacity

Both the stainless steel travel tumbler and the travel mug version with the handle hold a generous 16 ounces of your favorite hot or cold beverage. Both the tumbler and the mug are 7.8" tall and 3.3" wide (excluding the handle on the travel mug), tapering down to 2-5/8" wide at the base so they fit in most cup holders.

Keeps Hot Drinks Hot and Cold Drinks Cold

I love being able to use my Thermos travel tumbler for hot or iced tea or coffee, hot or chilled apple cider, hot cocoa, cold milk or any other non-carbonated drink I'm in the mood to drink.

Thermos' Vacuum Insulation Technology

The most important criterion in choosing a travel mug or tumbler is how long it can maintain the temperature of whatever beverage you put into it. Thermos’s vacuum insulation technology and double-wall stainless steel construction mean that hot drinks stay hot for up to 7 hours and cold drinks stay cold for up to 18 hours if you preheat or pre-chill the travel tumbler with hot or cold water for 5 to 10 minutes just before filling it with your beverage.

Travel Tumbler Exterior Stays at Room Temperature

Whether you fill it with a hot or cold beverage, the outside temperature of the tumbler is not affected by the temperature of its contents. (Of course, if you take it outside on a very hot or very cold day, the exterior of any metal container will get hotter or colder, based on the temperature of its environment.)

No "Sweating" Even When Filled With Ice-Cold Drinks

Even if you fill it with ice cubes and a cold beverage, this stainless steel travel tumbler doesn't "sweat" — i.e., condensation doesn't form on the outside of the mug. So, I never have to use a coaster under this tumbler to protect my antique mahogany dining table, coffee table or end tables.

The DrinkLock sealing lid has two openings

Leak-proof Lid

Thermos' DrinkLock sealing lid makes this travel mug leak-proof (unless you don't close the lid properly or reassemble it correctly after taking it apart for cleaning).

Dual Openings for Easy Access

There are slots on opposite sides of the lid that are controlled by a single lever. Sliding the lever to the side opens or closes both drinking slots simultaneously. So, when you pick up this travel tumbler, one of the openings will be no more than 1/4 turn away from your mouth.

Built-in Tea Bag Hook

The underside of the lid has a clever built-in hook for wrapping a tea bag string around or attaching the chain of a loose-leaf tea infuser.

Attractive and Functional Design

This vacuum-insulated stainless steel travel tumbler's graceful shape not only looks good but also feels good. The narrower "waist" (where the Thermos logo is) makes it easier for my small hand to hold this wide cup securely. Hand-washing is recommended and the surface colors and finishes stay looking great for years if you don't put these mugs in the dishwasher. There's also a great selection of colors to choose from:
  • Electric Blue (AKA Royal Blue)
  • Cranberry
  • Midnight Blue
  • Raspberry
  • Stainless Steel (Matte)
  • Pine Green
  • Army Green
  • Cranberry
  • Matte Black
  • Smoke (Grey)


Follow the Care and Use Instructions to Enjoy Your Thermos Stainless Cups For Many Years 

We bought the oldest of our Thermos travel tumblers, the Cranberry and Midnight Blue ones, in 2015. As you can see, after four years they've held up extremely well. However, to keep your Thermos travel tumbler or mug looking and functioning well, it's important to follow the manufacturer's care and usage instructions.

Hand Wash Your Cup in Warm, Soapy Water

Although these Thermos stainless steel travel tumblers and mugs are top-rack dishwasher safe in terms of their function, the company recommends hand washing them with mild soap and warm water to preserve their attractive appearance.

Worn finish on bottom edges of Cranberry cup after
dishwasher vs. like-new finish on hand washed blue cup
A few months ago, I found out the hard way what happens if you wash one in your dishwasher. I was feeling lazy and decided to put our Cranberry tumbler in the top rack of the dishwasher as an experiment. After washing it in the dishwasher this way a few times, I realized that the shiny, colorful finish had begun to wear off around the edges on the bottom of the cup.

Fortunately, the finish on the sides of the Cranberry tumbler still looks fine and the bottom hasn't gotten any worse since I went back to hand washing it. You can see in the photo that the bottom of my Royal Blue cup, which has always been hand washed, still looks like it did the day it arrived from Amazon.

I hand wash my Thermos travel tumblers with mild yet effective sulfate-free Puracy Natural Liquid Dish Soap, a soft sponge and long-handled OXO Good Grips Bottle Brush.

Don't Use Cleansers That Are Abrasive or Contain Chlorine Bleach

Abrasive cleansers (including dishwasher detergents), scrubbing sponges, etc., can dull or even wear away the finish on your Thermos travel tumbler or mug. (That is exactly what happened to the bottom of my Cranberry cup after I washed it in the top rack of my dishwasher a few times.)

The company also says not to use bleach or any products containing chlorine on these containers. Over time, some beverages, such as tea, can stain the gasket and seal if the lid is not washed promptly and thoroughly. Fortunately, replacement gaskets and seals are available.

If You Disassemble the Lid For Cleaning, Make Sure to Reassemble It Correctly

I don't disassemble the lid every time I wash my travel tumbler, but I do so fairly frequently to make sure I've cleaned it thoroughly. If you don't reassemble it correctly, your travel mug won't be able to maintain the temperature of your beverages as well and the lid may leak. I highly recommend reading and following the Thermos Vacuum Insulated Mug and Tumbler Care and Use Guide.





Thermos Stainless King vacuum-insulated stainless steel travel tumblers and mugs reviewed by Margaret Schindel



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Friday, November 17, 2017

Hot Tea Recipes for Fall and Winter Reviewed

Time Time Card is Available on Zazzle

Hot Tea Anyone? 


I really love discovering new hot tea blends and hot tea recipes!  Not only is hot tea good for our health, hot tea recipes are often simply delicious. 

January is National Hot Tea Month, but long before January, I need my hot tea.  After all, November and December are very cold months and we are constantly looking for something to warm us up inside and out. 

Truthfully, most tea-lovers drink hot tea year round.  We don't wait for the cold weather, but hot tea is essential when freezing temperatures settle in for the fall and winter months. 

There are many great hot tea blends and hot tea recipes.  It is often hard to choose a favorite hot tea, so we simply must sample them all!  Hot tea is especially delicious when shared with loved ones.  


Choosing the Right Hot Tea Recipe

What is the Difference in Teas?


Green, Black, and Oolong tea are all made from the same tea leaves.  It is the actual processing of the tea leaves that makes the difference.

Green teas ~ The leaves are steamed before they start to ferment. Tea leaves are not allowed to ferment for Green teas.

Black teas ~ The leaves are fermented for a limited time and then heated to stop further fermentation.

Oolong teas ~ The leaves are partially fermented.

Herbal teas ~ Not actually made from tea leaves.


Herbal Tea

Even though they are called tea, herbal teas are not made from tea leaves.  They are drinks created with flower leaves, peels, spices and/or herbs.

Make Your Own Herbal Tea ~ From the National Gardening Association:  Herbal Tea Recipes

 

 Lipton Premium Black Tea Bags, Natural Energy 40 ctCheck Price

Black Tea

According to the Tea Association of the United States, "recent research findings have reported that drinking black tea may improve the body's defenses and quicken the response to bacteria and viruses."  

This is just awesome news and an excellent reason to raise our tea cups and toast tea!

Black tea is considered the tea choice for energy.  If you need a boost in your energy level, this is the tea choice for you.

Black Tea Recipes

Thai Tea Recipe - Made with Milk


 

Green Tea

Green tea is considered to be healthiest tea.  It is lower in caffeine and contains antioxidants that promote better health.  Some studies show that it may even help prevent cancer, heart disease and tooth decay.

Green tea also helps to increase your metabolism, which can result in slight weight loss and it helps lower cholesterol. 

For more health information, see:  Green Tea Health Benefits

 

Oolong Tea

Oolong Tea is often referred to as the "weight loss tea" and it has been said that it is the most effective tea in aiding weight loss.  Some report that it aids in the relief of eczema, diabetes and allergies.

Oolong tea is my personal favorite.  I've never tried any Oolong blend recipes.  I simply stick to the standard Bigelow teabag and add a teaspoon of sugar for taste.  I don't drink Oolong tea for weight loss.  Honestly, if it affects my weight, I wouldn't know it.  I have been drinking it for decades. 


Holiday Hot Tea Recipes

From Halloween to New Years, we are celebrating, chatting, sipping tea and visiting with friends and family.  It is wonderful to have a variety of hot tea recipes to serve and to share.
 




 

 

Check Out More Recipe Reviews at
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More Hot Tea Articles

I am not the only hot tea loving Contributor! Here are a few more articles that you can read right here on Review This!


There are lots of great options available from a selection of teas to strainers, mugs, tea pots and much, much more.

Manatea Tea Infuser and Mug Gift SetManatea Tea Infuser and Mug Gift Set
The Manatea Tea Infuser and Mug Gift Set is really cute - I love the casual look of the mug and the 'go with the flow' inscription



Why drink peppermint tea? As well as being delicious this tea has a myriad of health benefits.


Looking for good medicinal teas? You can't do much better than Lifestyle Awareness teas. Here's my review after trying them.


Hot Tea Recipes for Fall and Winter Reviewed Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse





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Friday, April 21, 2017

Best Gifts for Tea Lovers

best gifts for tea lovers
Let's review some of the best gifts for tea lovers, I've been given a few of these gifts myself as one of my aunts affectionately calls me 'an old tea bag'!

I've been drinking and enjoying tea for many decades and even though I enjoy my coffee if I have to make a choice tea is still hands down my favorite.

What to give a tea lover?   Well there's lots of great options available from a selection of teas to strainers, mugs, tea pots and much, much more.

Let's have a look at a few things that I'd like to see gift wrapped for me!

Cute, Fun, Unique, Retro & Anything BUT Boring Tea Infusers!


There are so many different tea infusers available to purchase from cute tea infusers, to fun ones, cool retro tea infusers and more - one thing these tea infusers have in common is that they're unique and are perfect gift ideas.

I have been in love with the Sloth tea infuser for a while, but that didn't stop me absolutely falling head over heels in love with the manatee inspired infuser I received one year.  Check out my fun tea infuser reviews below -


These tea infusers are a couple of my favorite tea inspired gifts that I've received and they put a smile on my face every time I use them.

I may only have a couple at the moment, but that doesn't stop me looking at others all of the time - here are some of my favorite ones -

Unique and fun tea infusers from the collection at Lou16.com
Click the image to be taken to a great range of fun tea infusers that you'll love


Tea Pots & Tea Pot Gift Sets


Of course you can't go past a tea pot as a gift idea for a tea drinker and there's an awesome selection available.  The great thing about a tea pot is that you can use it with tea bags or loose tea so it doesn't matter what their preference is.

I love the stackable tea pot sets that you can get that combine a tea pot and cup (some of them even have a saucer as well) .  If you're buying for a cat loving couple who enjoy tea then this set is sure to bring a smile to their faces -

Isn't it adorable?  Even a dog owner like myself would still fall in love with the black cat's face!

In my household both my hubby and I enjoy drinking tea, but I do like to experiment with different teas whereas he sticks with his standard cuppa.

In cases where people are single, or the sole tea drinker in the house, or likes to try different teas then a stackable tea for one tea set is an awesome gift idea.


If you're not a fan of the pastel purple daffodil design you can check out a whole range by clicking on the image below -

Tea for one, gorgeous teapot and tea cup sets
Click the image to go to Lou16's gorgeous collection of tea for one gift sets

You may just want to get a straight tea pot, after all lots of people prefer to drink from mugs instead of cups these days and I do have a few for you to look at right here -


As you can see teapots can be found in a range of different styles, personally I like what I think of as a traditional teapot (The Pioneer Woman one featured below), but I know that a lot of people associate teapots and tea parties with the style of the porcelain butterfly & dragonfly teapot style above.

With more and more people being inspired by different teas and infusions the blue floral teapot featured makes me think of an Asian influence, perfect for a Japanese tea ceremony.

I deliberately haven't included any clear, glass teapots in this selection even though they do appear to be quite a popular choice these days.   If you're a tea drinker you'll be aware of how much the tannin in tea can stain your cup/mug/pot which is why I'm not sure how long the glass ones will stay looking as nice as they do.  

Despite this I was given a clear tea pot as a gift so I will be trying it out for myself and will report back with a review at a later date.  If the clear pots can be kept looking nice then there are a couple of different gifts that feature them including teapots that dispense the tea from the bottom and 'flowering' tea pots.   Stay tuned for more on these after I've investigated more! 


Tea Inspired Jewelry


Along with tea I do love jewelry and combining the two makes a unique gift idea for a tea drinker in your life.  Just check out some of these favorite pieces of mine -

Beautiful tea inspired jewelry - the best gift for a tea lover
Click the image to go to a selection of tea jewelry & find the perfect gift for your tea lover

As I've said other options can include a selection of teas or a mug.  When it comes to mugs there are some great personalized mugs available.  An alternative to a personalized mug is the mugs that come complete with a strainer that sits inside them and a lid - I received one of these from a work colleague a few years ago and it's fantastic!

I hope I've given you a few gift ideas for the tea lover in your life & maybe even a few things you'd like for yourself.


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Friday, January 20, 2017

Why Drink Peppermint Tea?

Why Drink Peppermint Tea - a Twinings Peppermint Tea Review
Twinings Peppermint Tea - Photography by Lou's Designs
As I review Twinings Peppermint Tea Bags let me also answer the question 'why drink peppermint tea?' - you might be surprised at the range of benefits this delicious beverage has.

I will admit to a bias - I love, love, love peppermint tea, but who wouldn't?  I touched very briefly on why I enjoy peppermint tea on my fun tea infuser review as I usually enjoy fresh peppermint leaves steeped in boiling water.

Sometimes, however you need another source and my go to commercial brand is Twinings Pure Peppermint tea bags.

When you're unable to use fresh leaves for whatever reason then tea bags are a great idea, but I've also just discovered (thanks to Amazon) that you can buy Twinings peppermint tea in K-Cups as well which I know a lot of people use.


Why Do I Recommend Twinings Peppermint Tea Bags?


Twinings Pure Peppermint is a tea that I really enjoy and I first came across it a few years ago when I managed to kill my peppermint plant - apparently they can't be killed, but as I've said to my daughter on numerous occasions there's no such word as can't!   I had to find a replacement as I'd come to really enjoy my cup of peppermint tea after lunch so I set off on a mission to find some peppermint tea bags.

Looking at my supermarket's tea selection I couldn't find the two brands that I had previously tried (when living in New Zealand) so it was really luck of the draw that I decided to try Twinings Pure Peppermint.  Well not just luck, but three very good reasons - 
  1. The name Twinings is synonomous with good tea
  2. They were available in a 10 bag size - ideal for sampling
  3. They were on a very good special
Once I sat down to my first cup I was very happy that I had decided on this brand as it really is delicious.   I work a few days a week in an office so I leave a few peppermint tea bags there so that I don't have to miss out on my peppermint tea when I don't have my plant handy (although making my own is my still my favorite way of enjoying this beverage).



Why Drink Peppermint Tea?


The main reason I enjoy drinking peppermint tea is because it's delicious and I love the taste!   There are lots of health benefits for drinking it as well, though and it's always nice when something that is good for you also tastes delicious!

Here's some of the benefits of peppermint tea -


  • Aids digestion, including bloating, cramping, vomiting & nausea - even motion sickness can be helped with peppermint tea.
  • Boosts your immune system - it has known anti-bacterial properties which means it can help ease symptoms of illness (especially colds, flus and sinus problems) and it can also act as a preventative.
  • Helps bad breath - it doesn't just make your mouth feel fresh and smell clean from the menthol (that's what gives you the minty flavor), but because of the anti-bacterial properties it can kill off germs that cause haliotis.
  • Helps with concentration - more on that below!
  • Can provide stress relief - menthol (an active ingredient in peppermint tea) has natural sedative and anti-spasmodic properties which combined together really helps to ease stress while the anti-inflammatory properties can help to lower blood pressure allowing you to relax.
  • Helps with headaches and migraines - because of how it helps with stress and sinus (two causes of headaches) peppermint tea can be very helpful.
  • Offers sinus relief - menthol is a natural decongestant which means it provides relief from sinus pressure, it also soothes a sore throat which is handy if the sinus congestion is from a cold or flu.   I've seen it recommended to add honey to peppermint tea for sinus, colds and flus, but I've never added honey myself.

There are lots more health benefits, it's almost sounding like a superfood isn't it?   I should add however that when taking herbal infusions for a medical reason you should always talk to your doctor.  Menthol has been known to cause typically mild allergic reactions in some people so if in doubt consult a medical professional.


Why I Drink Peppermint Tea At Lunchtime


I always enjoy my peppermint tea after eating my lunch (I sometimes enjoy it at other times, but this is my favorite time).  As I've said I enjoy the flavor, it leaves my mouth feeling lovely and fresh and I also think it helps with my digestion.

I have also discovered that I concentrate better in the afternoon if I've had a peppermint tea after lunch - no more '3pm fog brain' for me.  I had been wondering if this increased concentration was just a placebo effect, but apparently there have been scientific studies (and here was me thinking I'd 'discovered' this all by myself!).

A study published in the International Journal of Neuroscience found that peppermint tea can increase focus and concentration.   Another study by the University of Cincinnati found that the scent of peppermint was even better at boosting alertness, concentration and improving memory than actually drinking the tea.

Now I'm not going to just sniff the tea and not drink it, but I take the study to mean - sit down, relax, cradle your cup/mug of precious peppermint tea and inhale the scent while also sipping slowly on it. Once it's finished you'll be set for a very productive afternoon!

Twinings Peppermint Tea Bags
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