The title of this post is a wee bit hopeful on my part, but I’ve come to a couple of realizations about this site/blog recently.
The first is that I need to write more. I have a pile of deeper thought posts in a huge binder clip somewhere, and they were set aside because my capacity to write has gotten a bit rusty these past few years. Time gets eaten by so many things (especially when you run a small business and a household and are trying to teach yourself everything you can learn from thousands of years of tradition while working in the science as well)… and while it is something I have always enjoyed, I became lax. Tweets and Facebook updates and listings for tea do not quite count. So, the blog needs more content, but in order to finish some of the content waiting behind the wings, I need to write more… A mild conundrum.
The second is that I find myself enjoying getting to know the people behind the various blogs I read, as well as enjoying the less personal content. If it is true for me, and I have seen it be true for others, it seems time to be slightly less terrified about doing so here.
My hope is to post one of these a week, updating you on what we’ve been doing – in tea, in geekery, and highlights of life.
So, without further ado, I shall go collect my cup of tea (Beauxbaton’s Blend, today), and wrangle the random thoughts into something more cohesive.
Life, Our Universe, and Pets:
It has been an interesting week for Mister Tea and I. Last Friday turned into a visit to the ER for me, and the attending panic for a partner for him. We were pleasantly surprised by the experience. For a very long time (7 or 8 years?) I had no health insurance and thus had only one option for hospital in town. The people there were overworked, understaffed, underequipped, overworked…. and not really ready to deal with a medical zebra like me. (And did I mention overworked?) It often felt like you got sorted into a category on immediate first glance and then couldn’t move into another one. I have many tales, but I’ll leave those for another time.
In this case, I think we both felt more listened to. (I am still a zebra, so…) But the thing that filled me with absolute glee was, apparently, a very simple and normal act. Mister Tea called it my “Don’t kill the patient” label.
Between the MCS and some other assorted odd allergies and reactions to things, I’ve always been a little surprised that more care wasn’t taken to… be sure things were checked. For the moment, this little piece of red plastic is a keepsake.
Unfortunately, though unsurprisingly, the need for that visit sent my body into a mini tailspin and this week has been an exersize in patience with myself while getting things back to normal.
Just to add some spice to our week, we were also visited by the “Car Trouble” faerie, an issue which we may or may not have sorted without needing repairs. That saga may, sadly, yet continue.
Beyond that things have been happily normal. Blackbeak continues to be the Houdini of chickens, and Dulce continues to refuse to go outside when Blackbeak is loose…. (Apparently our Wolfhound finds chickens, and only chickens, to be intimidating. I’ll tell the story for that another time, too.)
Social Media: From SHINY! to the RNG hates me
Social media is still an odd space for me. It took me years to get around to Facebook, and initially it was mostly a way to make sure that people I cared about in other states and countries were still alive and generally well.
It took DSN to drag me into more of the venues, and I’ve still been wandering around the edges, occasionally dipping a toe in, trying to figure out how the murky waters of this particular section of the internet work. Strange thing, really, given that my time on the internet began back in the dark ages of BBSes and having to unplug your phone and plug in your computer.
At least a year ago I took one of those quizzes that meander around Facebook regarding what social media outlet best suits your communicative style. (Blogging was not an option presented.) The answer it spit out was Twitter. I was dumbfounded. How could I possibly communicate anything to anyone with such a tiny number of characters! I set up a Twitter account, and promptly just let it sit there.
I tried to tweet occasionally, but my first attempts ended up feeling a bit lifeless and a bit too marketing-centric. We do love it when people decide to buy our tea (and coffees… and cocoas) – but it isn’t everything we are about as a company, and it certainly isn’t our primary drive as people.
Eventually, I tossed a bit of the caution I had been exerting aside, and started treating Twitter as a series of conversations within a wider scale open invitation to a conversation. For those of you more savvy than I, this probably seems relatively obvious, but it was an earth-shaking step for me initially.
It made the environment tolerable, has taught me some things, has gifted me with things to read (both book and blog) and given me avenues to information about a variety of things I am interested in. We’ve also gained followers, a scattered few of whom I know for certain are Real Live People.
This week the internet was fairly nice. Granted, I didn’t do anything crazy like hunt for images of things.
Teas, Cocoas, and Coffees (Oh My!)
Nothing staggering to report this week, sadly. Because our year has been so “interesting” so far, most of what I have been doing is catchup. Lots of paperwork, lots of maintenance, lots of… primarily uninteresting things that I shall waste no more words on.
There are a couple of good things in the works, however. I’d let all of our gift sets and sample packs expire, due to realizing they were no longer accurate. More than a year had passed, and our offerings had expanded extensively. Currently working on getting things in order so that we can retake photos of our arrays of Chais, Chocolate Teas, and several of our different geekery sets… and make them available again.
As per usual, we do still have a ton of ideas, and hopefully I will catch up enough to sit down and create something new soon.
Entertainment: The Final Frontier
One of the gifts from Twitter these past weeks was a reminder that I love to read and I haven’t been giving myself the time to do so. Mister Tea seemed to come to a similar realization.
This week my “light” reading has covered WWII (Omar N. Bradley’s ‘A Soldier’s Story), Christian Philosophy (CS Lewis’ ‘The Problem of Pain’) and disease history (John Aberth’s “Plagues in World History.) Cue teasing regarding my definition of light reading. *waits patiently for a few moments* I do, in fact, read fiction. This week, however, my selections were specifically chosen to be things I could read in bursts while taking short breaks. In most fiction there comes a point where the story grabs your psyche and you have to make a saving throw to put it down.
Mister Tea has been voraciously devouring the first two books in a David Weber series I’ve not read as yet. (Safehold) They must be at least up to Weber’s usual par, as just about every waking moment that isn’t taken up by work/sleep/food/general self maintenance has involved reading.
I also finally got around to discovering….. the Podcast.
Yes, I know, I’m a bit late to the party. I think I had always worried that if I started listening to podcasts I wouldn’t get anything done while listening to them, and I didn’t need to add anything else like that to my life. However, to my great happiness, I discovered that the right podcast makes humdrum mind-numbing paperwork and filing and sorting far more bearable. It keeps the part of my mind that ends up going into a grumpy belligerent hibernation mode active, which could end up being a Very Good Thing.
The podcast I began with is “Tea & Jeopardy,” hosted by Emma Newman. The humour is right up my alley, the conversations interesting, and the settings and bits of geekery and tale telling just… perfect, really. I know I shall be sad when I run out of backlogged ‘casts.
Additionally, since I know I will run out eventually, I am open to suggestions for other things to listen to.
Despite the rocky beginning and the interesting ups and downs, this has been a week of good ideas and beginnings, and I am fairly happy with it.
I will admit to an amount of trepidation regarding the internet and the next week, given all the brilliant things that floated up out of the depths this week. It is rarely this nice to me.
However, as I have brewed my second cup of tea, I shall sign off for now, and go hunt for images to place into this post. (Though I believe I will stay in the well charted territory of my own hard drive.)
Best of luck to you. Until next time…