Steep Me A Cup of Tea Haul

Last week I got to make my first trip to Steep Me A Cup of Tea, a tea company based right here in my hometown of Fargo, North Dakota. I was so excited to finally get to go. A lot of stores in Fargo sell different big brands of tea but having a store that blends and sells its own teas is next level tea stuff. It wasn’t something I thought I would ever find in my hometown. Sometimes, its good to be wrong.

The night before I went, I sat down and made a list of teas I wanted to try and set myself a budget for myself based on the list. Of course, when I got to the store only 2 of the 7 teas, I chose the actually made it into my haul. The other 5 teas that went into my basket because they smelled good or had combinations of ingredients that intrigued me. And no, I didn’t stick to my budget either. A last-minute find put me over budget by about 20 dollars but I couldn’t resist. It could have been worse, I wanted a lot more tea.

The great thing about Steep Me A Cup of Tea is their blends are unique, either in ingredients, I have never seen a rhubarb tea before, or in how they combine ingredients. I also love how they have teas across all tea types, not just black and herbal with a few green teas thrown in because that is what people are used to.

The teas I got are:

Orange Pu’erh — I am a fan of the fermented teas called Pu’erh (poo air). This particular Pu’erh is stuffed into a small orange to flavor and ferment the tea. It can be resteeped several times.

Indian spice — When I think of Indian spices, I think of Chai. This isn’t a Chai. It has whole fennel seeds, cardamom, anise, cloves and chunks of cinnamon bark. It is a very light and refreshing tea.

Harvest tea — I chose this tea because it has pumpkin and cranberries in it. I am an absolute sucker for anything cranberry. Cranberries are my favorite fruit.

Rhubarb road — I chose this tea because I love rhubarb and I have never seen it in a tea before.

Mango Pineapple Green Tea — Before I started drinking loose-leaf tea, I wasn’t a big fan of green tea. I found that it isn’t that I don’t like green tea, it’s that I am very particular about what kind of green tea I drink. But I want to try it before I say I don’t like it and mango and pineapple are generally flavors I like so I thought a green tea with those flavors. Spoilers — it is very good.

Milk Oolong — Milk oolong has been on my to try list for a long time so I decided to give it a try.

I can see this store becoming a very favorite place for me to go and hang out and read or work on the blog. The teas are good and the employees very nice. I love to shop at a place where I can get and give good conversation. I will do further reviews of the teas and store after I have spent a little more time and money at the store.

Tea Advent Calendars

When I was a kid the surest sign it was almost Christmas was when my mom brought home that little cardboard advent calendar filled with chocolates from the grocery store. My brothers and I would eagerly, but not always patiently, wait our turn to open the little door and feast upon the chocolate contained inside. It was one of my favorite parts of the lead up to actual Christmas day. I always thought it was a little sad to lose that as my brothers and I got older.

Last year, I discovered there are actual adult themed advent calendars when one of my favorite tea companies put out a pre order for their tea themed advent calendar. I will admit I felt kind of silly ordering an advent calendar at 51 years old, it seemed kind of childish in a way, but I am glad I didn’t let my inner adult get in the way of my inner child. For each day leading up to Christmas, I took the first 30 minutes of my day and had a cup of tea and read a book or spent time with my pets or just sat and enjoyed my tea. It really helped me start the day in a positive frame of mind that bled over into everything I did during my day. I loved it so much that this year I ordered 2 different advent calendars. I chose both calendars because I had only ordered once from each company and wanted to try more teas from the companies.

T2’s Sip The Future Hello isn’t a traditional advent calendar. It doesn’t scream Christmas when you look at it. In addition to great tea, the calendar gives you a suggestion for being kind to yourself, kind to others and ways to be kind to the planet. I really like that idea because sometimes I think, in all the activity and stress that can come with the holidays, we forget the most important thing is to be kind, especially kind to ourselves.

The teas that are included in the calendar are printed on the back of the calendar along with the ingredients, in case you need that information. The order of the teas on the back of the calendar aren’t the same order they are in the calendar so it will still be a surprise.

The second advent calendar I bought was from Adagio. The calendar is more of a traditional looking Christmas style. The names and ingredients of the teas included aren’t on the box but can easily found on the Adagio website if needed.

Neither of the Adventent calendars are filled with exclusive holiday tea blends. The teas in the calendars are from the company’s general stock of tea that is available all year long. If you order from T2 or Adagio a lot you may get a lot of teas you are already familiar with. That isn’t a deal breaker for me, but it is for some.

I would like to take a second and talk about the Advent calendar I bought last year from a company called Plum Deluxe. You get to choose between a caffeinated or herbal calendar. Unlike Adagio or T2, half the teas in each Plum Deluxe calendar are exclusive to the calendar. Each envelope has enough tea for two or three cups of tea. The teas come in a numbered envelope and there is an option to buy little reindeer clips to hang them if desired. After Christmas, you get a limited time to buy full size packages of the exclusive teas. For those that don’t celebrate Christmas, Plum Deluxe also has a Hannukah calendar too.

I opened day 1 on each of the calendars because I wanted to share a little about the teas themselves. Each packet in each of the calendars has enough tea for single 8 oz cup of tea. Because T2 and Adagio are quality tea companies you can generally resteep the leaves for at least one additional cup of tea.

Is it worth it? I, personally, can’t wait until December 1st to start opening those little doors and see what is behind them. I think that anything that gives a moment of pleasure and peace in an often hectic and stressful season is definitely worth it. But don’t wait too long. Avent calendars tend to sell out fast.