I can’t remember when I first started drinking tea…
Perhaps it started in my teen-age years. My mom would keep a jar of instant, unsweetened tea in the cupboard for warm summer days. Sometimes, when desperate and out of soda, I would screw off the lid on the instant tea jar and make myself a glass of iced-tea. Knowing me, I probably added a ton of sugar to my drink! I had a big sweet-tooth back then, as I do today.
When I went away to college, I found myself drinking instant tea with flavoring like lemon, raspberry and peach. Because I was more weight conscious in college, I went for the artificial sweeteners.
My next memory of tea is when I attended grad school down south—Arkansas to be exact—where sweet tea is a staple beverage on restaurant menus.
When ordering iced tea in a restaurant I learned to always add “unsweetened” to my request; because in the South, simply asking for tea means you want sweet tea. The funny thing is, that once my unsweetened iced-tea was brought to the table, I would add two packets of Sweet-N-Low! Boy, I was a weird-o!
My next clear tea memory is when I was working at a university. My boss, at the time, introduced me to an interesting twist on iced-tea. She would take whatever tea bags she had on hand, mainly a lot of fruit teas, and she would brew them all together. The resulting concoction was quite yummy and no artificial sweeteners required.
My walk down memory lane has made me realize that: Not only have I gone from instant tea to tea bags but, I’ve also given up soda and coffee along the way.
Giving Up Soda and Coffee:
All my life, until the last 6 years, I had been a huge pop drinker. I was literally drinking gallons of diet soda per week. Then one day, I decided to stop. I was concerned about the consequences of continuing to load my body with chemicals.
At this time I decided give up coffee too and only drink tea or water.
I found it pretty easy to give up coffee, because I had never been a big coffee drinker. I didn’t even own a coffee machine. If I was in the mood for coffee, I would drink it at the office or order it at the local coffee shop. Plus, coffee started to make me feel anxious and jittery. It seemed like a no-brainer to just stop drinking the stuff. Not to mention, I had discoverd Tazo Awake tea. This tea was a welcome replacement for coffee.
It was a little harder to give up soda because I had been drinking it for so many years. I would say that it took me a good year to wean myself off of the diet pop.
All this time, I was drinking a limited selection of tea bags but, they did help me kick my soda and coffee habits!
As I had mentioned above, for the past six years my main source of liquid intake has been water or tea. Yet, I’ve never ventured outside the tea bag.
The picture to your right is an example of my limited range of tea drinking experiences. As you can see by the sad assortment of tea packets, I am no tea connoisseur by any stretch of the imagination!
Now it’s time to take the next step. Get out of my comfort zone of drinking the same off-the-shelf brands of tea and start exploring the wide range of exotic loose teas available.
Just from the little bit of time I’ve spent trolling the internet for anything tea related, I’ve discovered that the world of tea is huge, a bit overwhelming in fact.
Therefore, I plan to take this journey slow and easy. I want to relish each moment and each sip.
If you’ve never tried tea or would like to investigate different types of teas, I hope you’ll join me.
Perhaps we’ll discover something pretty cool together along the way.
This is “a girl with tea” signing off for now. Wishing you peace and happiness
P.S. Thanks for reading my first blog post! I’m looking forward to reading your comments, and commenting back.
Photo Credit: MzScarlett – via Flickr CC Attribution License and A Girl With Tea (tea packets)
What is your tea story? When did you have your first tea drinking experience? What do you love about tea? What types of teas have you always wanted to try?