We do love tea time here at the Everyday Graces academy! Remember our Nutcracker tea and our gluten free strawberry scones? Well, I’m always on the lookout for new teas to try and new ways to incorporate tea (and coffee) time into our homeschool days. I’m sharing a new favorite homeschooler-owned tea company and some ways we incorporate a time of slowed-down togetherness into our crazy homeschool days.
Blooming with Joy Tea
Blooming with Joy tea popped up on my Instagram feed one dreary afternoon. I immediately perked up! Tea, you say? Why, yes, I’ll pop right on over. *I may have a bit of a tea obsession. My collection of tea accessories and cups will never tell.*
I was immediately taken with the photos of the loose leaf teas carefully crafted by Michelle. Check out the Earl Grey Creme tea for an example. Michelle is also a homeschool mama. Yay for homeschoolers who drink, and create, tea!
Well, when the above box arrived in the mail, I was delighted. I adore brown paper packages tied up with string! When I opened it to find my favorite color tissue paper wrapped around these lovely tins of tea, I was almost beside myself. Then came the actual test. I had to open the carefully sealed tins to see and smell the tea. First was the Lady Gray. Think your classic Earl Gray with more finesse and vanilla. The brightness of the lavender against the black tea is gorgeous. The tea itself is velvety smooth with an aroma that will carry you far away from sibling squabbles to a wood paneled room with a comfy Queen Anne arm chair, a small fire in the marble fireplace, and a library full of old books. The steeping time is printed right on the side of each tin for handy reference, which I love because I never remember how long to steep which sort of tea.
Next was the Vanilla Bean Chai. This is a roobios tea blend so it is naturally caffeine free. And it is a perfectly spiced chai. I really enjoy the spice of chai, especially on chilly evenings, so having a caffeine free option is wonderful!
Last, but not least, was Sleepy Dreams tea. Do you see all those beautiful chamomile buds in the tin? There is also roobios, peppermint, and vanilla. This tea is the crisp-clean-sheets perfect end to the day. I also serve it to the boys. Who both really like it with Vanilla Creme Stevia. I honestly don’t think you can go wrong with any of the Blooming with Joy Teas! Now that the tea is taken care of, how about that tea time in your homeschool day?
Cultivating an appreciation for savored moments together
There are many ways to create a ritual of quiet together time in your homeschool. Teatime happens to be our favorite. Sometimes we go all out with cookies, jam, scones, and sandwiches. Usually, though, it’s just tea and maybe some crackers as a little snack. It is always in the afternoon, together, and it is at the kitchen table or the school room table. When the boys are older, then we may migrate to the couch. 😉
Why cultivate a time of quiet togetherness? I want to impart their importance to my children. I want us to be able to talk together, to ask questions, to reflect on the day and our lives. I want a mutual respect of our time together, uninterrupted and technology free. I think developing trust with your child is huge part of parenting in the early years. Taking time to listen to them, to let them determine the poetry readings, etc. lets them know they are valued. I don’t want to squash that, I want it to grow.
Here are some ideas to cultivate together time:
- Poetry and tea/hot cocoa/etc. We love Kooky Crumbs, A Light in the Attic, and A Child’s Garden of Verses.
- Together time with building blocks and audio books. We use Audible because there is a huge library available, as well as Lamplighter Theatre, Adventures in Odyssey, and Maestro Classics CDs.
- Rhyme around the table. Start with a word and everyone comes up with a rhyming word. It gets really fun when words are made up! For older children, use phrases together. Being silly together is always fun.
- Tea and art. Chalk pastel projects or fun coloring books make for a relaxing time together.
Tea supplies we love
- Stainless Steel Tea Balls – for looseleaf tea
- Tea strainer – perfect for herbal teas you steep directly in the pot
- Tea cups – Lovely cups, fun cups, gilded cups, and child sized sets. We have a collection of mismatched cups because I find it charming and each one has a story.
- A real teapot.
- Raw honey
- Lemon curd and clotted cream
- Raspberry jam
- Gluten Free Walker Shortbread Cookies
- Scone mix for yummy scones!