Tea & Pregnancy
I am sure many are curious about just how much tea one should be consuming during pregnancy and especially while traveling to the mother of all tea events, the World Tea Expo in Las Vegas, which is in just about two weeks? When I arrive I will be just about halfway through my pregnancy and believe me there is no hiding it. I am really showing “the baby bump” as it was.
I am certain I will get judgmental glances sent my way and whispers under ones breath about my sampling teas. While I don’t suspect I will withdraw from tasting teas I do feel however I will probably only sample very few if any Matcha tea. I am concerned about the caffeine combined with the other teas I will also be enjoying. I am sure it isn’t a major concern, except I already know how my body reacts to Matcha when I am not pregnant so I feel it is my best interest and that of the baby to just stick with traditional tea.
When it comes to pregnancy may people have many different views. Do drink or not to drink, coffee or no coffee, what about sushi? While there are many pieces of information available on all subjects I truly feel that using your best judgment is way to go.
You know your body and what you should or should not do. There is a lot to be said for moderation even when you are not pregnant. I have always felt that whatever your decision just remember you are not just making it for yourself but for that little life growing and depending on you in the inside.
Moderation is key. With my first pregnancy I drank tea all the time. I did reduce my consumption by maybe 25% but keep in mind I already drink much more than the common tea drinker. It only seemed rational and appropriate to reduce my intake a little. I did not drink regular coffee with my first only decaf if I was craving the flavor. Alcohol was a total “no-no” for me. Still I understand that in many countries outside of the United States many “soon to be mama’s” still indulge in an occasional glass of wine. As long you are not getting drunk and over indulging doctors felt it was safe and most of all there is no societal stigma. No judging, no evil eye, or even blunt refusal to serve, an unfortunate situation known to happen in the United States far to often.
Now, I am not certain what is right and what is wrong but I can tell you for me tea is perfectly fine. In fact it helps to calm my nerves. I am sure those around me appreciate my efforts to remain calm. These hormones do have a way of getting the best of me at times. I have even taken to drinking very few and occasional cups of regular coffee maybe twice a week. As for alcohol I still tend to stay away though I do plan on using a spittoon during my trip to Napa Valley in July. I have cleared it with my doctor and she feels what little I get from tasting and spitting will not pose a threat to the baby and me.
So as I wait for the next two weeks to slowly go by I also wait and prepare myself for the almost certain second glance and tiny whispers while enjoying my tea for all to see. I am sure it won’t happen a lot. I like to believe the tea community is far more enlightened for that sort of nonsense but for those few out there let me be and have a cup of tea.
It should be even more interesting visiting all the wineries in Napa Valley while 25 and 26 weeks pregnant. I guess hubby will have to come to my defense. Not to worry I truly only plan on swishing and spitting into a spittoon. I would never purposefully harm the baby and myself. I am sure those who know me best can be my character witnesses. See you all in Las Vegas!
Life’s A Whirlwind
I’ve experienced so much excitement this year. From iHeartTeas and the expansion I have done to my tea-inspired bath and beauty line to finding out I will be a mom again, a “whirlwind” to say the least. Though this year has proven to be filled with new beginnings and major milestones everything has been wonderful.
Let me start by saying… I’m Happy!!! I am following my dreams and writing at will and creating from the heart. I am following my passions and reading my books again; enjoying “me” time, which I know, will soon be over. I am enjoying new teas and tea experiences whilst sharing my love for tea far and wide.
Even my husband is enjoying great success at work. He was promoted last year and though he has had his title since last year he didn’t actually assume all of his new duties until the start of this year. With this newfound responsibilities and obvious boost in pay, the best news is now doesn’t travel as frequently as he once did. This means he’s home more often and though he works a lot when he is home the point is… “HE IS HOME!!!” Sorry, I guess I am a little excited.
Next, we found out we are going to be having our second child later this year. I never expected to be pregnant again but we couldn’t be more excited. I think my newfound profound happiness is directly related to entering the second trimester and being so excited about my upcoming trip to Las Vegas for the World Tea Expo.
I have a couple of trips in the pipeline. Both of which were planned and booked prior to becoming pregnant. Luckily both fall into the second trimester. However, the second trip I am just a day from the third trimester when I return. Still I have cleared it with the “doc” and with her blessing I am free to be excited and diligently planning for Vegas and California.
At the World Tea Expo I will be hitting up the booths, attending conferences, going to the Networking Reception, and participating in the “Tea Bloggers Roundtable.” I am especially eager to attend the “How to use Blogging in your Business” Core Conference on Sunday.
I’ll have the chance to speak with and ask questions to some of the most respected tea bloggers.
Below are the Panelists:
Linda Gaylard , Blogger, The Tea Stylist
Robert Godden, Blogger, The Devotea
Darlene Meyers-Perry, Blogger, The Tea Enthusiast’s Scrapbook
Naomi Rosen, Founder, Joy’s Teaspoon
Jason Walker, Co-Founder/Co-Director, The Association of Tea Bloggers
Virginia Wright, Co-Founder/Co-Director, The Association of Tea Bloggers
If you are going to the Expo I highly recommend the “How to us Blogging in your Business” core conference and the “Tea Bloggers Roundtable” on Friday night. Any blogger both experienced and novice is sure to walk away with a plethora of useful information. I know I am always looking for ways to attract new readers and keep my loyal followers coming back for more.
The Panelists for the Tea Bloggers Round Table:
6-7pm Friday, June 7th:
Conference Area: Room N255
I am also very excited to be enjoying an “Afternoon Tea” with many World Tea Expo attendees that I have meet through Social Media and in person at last years Expo. We are going to be taking in “Afternoon Tea” at the Four Seasons Las Vegas. A special “Thank you” to Nicole Schwartz aka @AmazonV for taking responsibility for making reservations and planning. I fully intend to partake in the culinary delights I am sure to be represented with and the of course the tea. Yes, the glorious tea, which I am sure, will be paired preciously with the perfect little tea treat. I will post my thoughts on my experience and hopefully many wonderful pictures of the event for my blog. I should mention even my husband is anxious to go to tea. I have trained him so well… wink…wink.
I haven’t got the rest of the visit worked out yet but since it will most likely be our last husband and wife only trip I am sure we will make plenty of time for my hubby and I to enjoy quality time together. I mean I didn’t buy a maternity swimsuit for nothing, right?
I won’t discuss my trip to California in July just yet but I will say that this year so far has been filled with a lot of tea. I am hoping the next half will be the same. With many tea shop stops in San Francisco for sure.
Speaking of tea, I have been very lucky with this pregnancy and the last, because I have craved tea and the various different flavor profiles some teas represent. I have been mostly waiting brisk, bold, and astringent teas. Then from there I suddenly divert and have needed to consume pots of my “Strawberry Island” Black Tea Blend, which is flavored with strawberry, coconut, and vanilla. Just writing about this tea is making me want to reach for a cup now or maybe I’ll cold steep some using the “Steep and Go” iHeartTeas also carries. I have also found some rather new delicious unaltered teas recently from Verdant Tea and Upton Tea that I can’t keep my hands off of. Golden Fleece of course and the Laoshan Black from Verdant Tea and River Shannon Breakfast Blend and Scottish Breakfast Blend from Upton Tea. Of course I am being reasonable with my consumption but still succumbing to desire. I drank tea all through my first pregnancy and I have a beautiful, intelligent, and amazing six-year-old daughter. If anything tea many have attributed to those qualities, I’m only saying. This is not my medical opinion as I am sure genetics played a part too.
Thanks, for reading especially since this was such a long post. I didn’t even get to mention my new living furniture arriving soon from Ethan Allen, maybe next time. Well, at least I didn’t forget the tea.
If you are attending the World Tea Expo in Las Vegas this June I’d love you join us for our “Tea Bloggers Round Table.” At this casual event you’ll have the chance to meet and chat with many tea bloggers you may already know and ask the questions you’ve been dying to ask.
Where do you get your topic ideas?
How do you keep things fresh and engaging?
How do you measure your success?
As you can see I am a panelist and will do my best to answer your questions. Perhaps even over a cup of tea.
Tea Bloggers Roundtable
An informal gathering and discussion of issues concerning blogging and tea will be held from 6:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. on Friday, June 7, 2013, at the Las Vegas Convention Center (N255).
For complete program details or to RSVP visit http://www.agiftoftea.com.
Can’t wait to see you there.
My Blog: www.iHeartTeasTheBlog.com
Top 5 “Can’t Miss” Booths at World Tea Expo – Las Vegas 2013
I have listed here the top five booths I will be making a point to visit this year. The list below is based on my own personal preferences only. I am not advertising for any company, nor as any company approached me to do so. Besides visiting booths I highly recommend taking classes and sitting in on a lecture or two. The experience is very educational and I am certain you will come away with applicable knowledge, great experiences, and new friends.
Top 5 “Can’t Miss” Booths
1. ITO EN (Booth 814) – I absolutely adore ITO EN’s “ready to drink” teas. I have one in hand most every day, usually Oi Ocha Dark or a Sencha Shot which I first had at last years expo. I have come to notice ITO EN does its best to remain cutting edge and works hard to keep their product as pure and as high quality as possible. Last year ITO EN showcased many new and unique tea beverages. I am hoping they do the same again this year and who knows perhaps I’ll find a new favorite. Try some while you are there and you can judge for yourself.
2. Teas Etc. (Booth 600) – Last year I had the pleasure of meeting Beth Johnston the owner of Teas Etc. I found her kind and extremely knowledgeable. She has a keen insight into starting up and running a successful tea business, she also really knows her tea. I will be making it point to stop and say “Hi” and ever better try to make it to one of her lectures, I suggest you do the same.
3. The Tea Spot (Booth 711) – What I like best able this company is their commitment to customer service. The Tea Spot also offers some very unique products such as the “Tuffy Tea Steeper,” and the “Steep & Go.” I like knowing that when I stop by their booth I will be exposed to some rather amazing teas and interesting new tea gadgets. Can’t wait to see what new and exciting products they have this year. Plus, I had the pleasure of meeting Katie Young, Customer Service Representative for The Tea Spot at last years expo thanks to Chris Giddings recommendation. She has personal experience using their product plus expert knowledge of their tea and gadgets. I hope to see her again this year.
4. Zojirushi America Corporation (Booth 501)– A staple in my house is a Zojirushi brand water boiler. Every year they come out with new water boiling technology and I must see what’s new this year. I have been most intrigued with their line of hybrid water heaters but can’t wait to see what other new products they have come out with this year as well.
5. Vintage TeaWorks (Booth 716) – This will be my first time officially being exposed to Vintage TeaWorks and I couldn’t be more excited. I have heard nothing be amazing things about this company and their unique wine-inspired teas. With all the great word of mouth Vintage TeaWorks has been getting I had to add them to my list of “Can’t Miss” booths. The only problem is I am not sure if I should bring my teacup or my wine glass.
Please share with me your experiences especially if stop by the booths I have listed above. Can’t wait to see you there!
It has been brought to my attention that this year the World Tea Expo will be uniquely special to me both personally and professionally. There will be some especially amazing tea people attending this year, aside from me of course. I will have the pleasure of meeting so many of my social network friends this year that it has made me just plain giddy.
I’ll have to pleasure of seeing @Jopj again and if you are attending this year and never met her before I highly suggest it. She is super sweet, a Tea Trader of course, and incredibly knowledgable. If you didn’t already know she is a terrific children’s tea book writer. My now six year old daughter has been a fan of hers for two years now. She is even pictured on my friend Jo Johnson’s website.
Don’t be jealous, I even get to meet the infamous @thedevotea and his lovely wife Lady Devotea, which I can only assume has the virtue of a saint. He too is a Tea Trader and has some rather amazing teas too. Check them here: The Devotea
If I remember correctly I’ll get to see my friend @AmazonV again too. It’s not my first time meeting her but it will be my first time at the Expo. She is such a fun person everyone should make a point to meet. She also has a great tea blog. Check out her work here: AmazonV
Just a warning, I am maybe gushing when I meet the talented @lazyliteratus. He is an incrediably gifted writer and all around nice guy. You can check out his tea blog here… Lazy Literatus and judge for yourself.
Lastly, I will have the honor of meeting Michael Coffey, the Tea Geek himself. He is brilliant and can answer even the toughest and most obscure of tea questions. You can count on his accuracy and if he can’t answer your question immediately he will find out. I plan on bringing a list of questions for when I see him.
I am sure there are many more attending that I am unaware of but as for now these are my tea friends I am most eager to meet. I hope I don’t embarrass myself.
Not only am I excited about meeting my tea friends live and in person I am also most intrigued with the new shared venue. This year World Tea Expo will be sharing space with the Healthy Beverage Expo.
I think the combination will be beneficial to both Expo’s. I am full of curiosity and enthusiasm especially when two somewhat similar yet different worlds collide. Often times those in the healthy drink industry cross paths with the tea industry and visa versa. Exposure to both sides should prove beneficial to both industries. Having both equally compatible venue in one place has the potential to build new relationships and more opportunity to learn. For me the two Expo’s marry perfectly. I love my cup of tea but lets be honest, it isn’t the only drink I consume. Shocking, I know. In actuality I probably consume 90% tea and 10% other healthy beverages on a daily basis. Although, I know I am not the norm. I imagine for most the percentages would be closer to 50/50. I am not a pop drinker but I do enjoy coconut water, coffee, unique drinks like Kombucha, but only rarely. I even occasionally like vegetable juices. With that said, I can only suspect that we will see a higher turn out with a lot more fresh and exciting products and information available to view. I will be sure to share with you my impressions once I arrive in Las Vegas. This will be my second visit and can’t wait for the festivities.
It’s been about a week since we have been back from the Expo. We meaning myself and my husband Ralph. It’s been an interesting week at that just trying to see if I can’t put my thoughts together onto virtual paper. This was our first exclusively tea Expo and I feel we saw and learned so much that the idea of putting together a blog post became a bit overwhelming.
On a personal note, many of you know that the week prior to actually departing for the Expo was a bit mentally and physically challenging time for us. Fortunately things are getting better on the family front. What I mean by that is my dad’s health is improving dramatically every day. As a matter of fact my dad was released released from the hospital the day prior to our leaving for Las Vegas and because he was doing so much better it made our trip that much more pleasurable.
Let me set the scene, a week before leaving my dad had a massive heart attack but now is doing much better. Next, this was also the first trip that both my husband and I were taking out-of-state without our five year old daughter. Another huge obstacle for me and her considering I’m a stay-at-home mom and being always around was sort of my thing. It was hard for me to let go. Not so much my husband since he travels a great deal for work anyway. For example, he’s in the Bahamas right now as I type this. So anyway I just wanted wanted to lay down a foundation so you knew my mental state prior to leaving, that’s the end of that and now off to the World Tea Expo.
I think my husband would best describe my attitude as extremely giddy. I was about to come face-to-face with what I would call utopia. Just imagine a microcosm comprised entirely of tea, tea accessories, tea education, tea fanatics, from all around the world. Reminds me of that daydream where you are wandering through streets of candy, where the houses are built of chocolate but in my case, steeped in tea.
I knew once I arrived it would just be a whirlwind adventure full of meeting new friends and old, learning new things, seeing new products, a veritable cornucopia of tea goodness.
I will say I was on a mission to find some really good friends of mine. Friends that I’ve made through social media, such as Twitter, Google+, Tea Trade, and Steepster. Funny, I remember as a child I used to have pen-pals. How times have changed, still my friendships through social media are just as strong if not stronger than those that I’ve made by way of traditional methods.
It was an extreme pleasure to meet Jo also known on Twitter as @agiftoftea. It was like in the movies. Our eyes met and in slow motion we ran to each other as I imagined Chariots of Fire playing in the background. Truly an epic moment. No, wait dare I say it… “Legend…wait for it…dary” – Barney Stinson from “How I Met Your Mother” moment. Similar moment happened yet again when I got to meet Katrina also known as @TeaPages on Twitter. We had near chance meetings on several occasions and I finally we had the opportunity meet in person, it was just like meeting an old friend.
By this time it was still earlier on Friday, the first day of the expo and what a way to start. However, even before then I went to my first lecture regarding how to “Find Gold In Green Markets” by Dan Robertson Owner/Director of The Tea House & World Tea Tours. The lecture covered key points on how to best be successful at farmers markets, what to look for, how to pack, how to present, and more. I felt reassured that much of the information being covered was what I had already known. Still it does make me feel better hearing that from someone as experienced as him.
After getting a good start to my morning I spent the rest of the day on the show floor. I got to see many of the vendors I’ve been wanting to see including some very unique vendors. I will get more into more details about the specifics of exactly what I saw, what I found intriguing, and what I would like to get involved with in my next blog post. Right now I just wanted to be able to set a foundation as to what this Expo has been for me.
So far I can say this Expo for me was mostly about networking. Of course, included in that is learning about new products. Plus a rather pleasant surprise, I learned what sort of footprint I’ve left within the community without even realizing.
In one of my other blog posts I’ll go more into detail about those wonderful tea education courses I was able to take thanks entirely to Beth and Neumann of Teas Etc. I was one of two lucky winners that won $400 to spend tea education courses. Thank you so much again Beth and Neumann.
After a long day on the Expo floor and many tea samples later, it was time for our Tweet-Up that was so graciously put together by Jo. It was such a great experience meeting all the people that I’ve been talking to on Twitter for such a long time including Naomi from Joys Teaspoon @JoysTeaspoon and her two other friends and associates Sarah @oolongofficer, and Audrea @EarlSteeper. Also, had the pleasure of meeting Chris Giddings @Teaity and @chrisagiddings, Lisa @LisaBraithwaite, and of course Jo and Katrina as mentioned. I do hope I didn’t forget anyone. My husband Ralph @ralphcarterii also joined us. He was kind enough to make sure we had hot water and tea during our meeting. Tea was provided by Teas Etc. Beth and Neumann were kind enough to come to rescue with some delicious Oriental Beauty oolong, a Zojirushi that Ralph guarded with his life, and T-Sac’s when we found out Lochan Teas supply of teas never arrived at the Expo. Thanks again for everything. The best part of the tweet up is that we finally got a chance to sit down have general conversation regarding our likes and dislikes at the Expo, some interesting finds, and just general catching up. I was meeting everyone face to face for the first time so there was a lot of catching for me. Towards the end we had great conversation about what we should do as bloggers at next years Expo. I feel confident we are going in the right direction with some of these ideas but until I can confirm we are going forward with the plan I won’t be sharing the details. Just know it is a great idea, includes the collective powers of bloggers and retailers and hopefully in the end will bring forth a cornucopia of new rich information.
Once the tweet up was over we all decided to head back to the expo floor and witness the Wu-Yu Tea Ceremony. It was a beautiful ceremony where the person who prepares the tea is to be silent and the person receiving the tea is also silent during the entire ceremony. There were many participants and from what I understand all spots for the ceremony were filled. It was so beautiful to see all these people who didn’t even know each other, maybe some did but others didn’t, just graciously offer a stranger a cup of tea with sincere smile.
Now the day had ended I was ready to head back to the hotel with sore feet, sore knee and a full bladder. Totally worth it.
I suspect I will have many entries regarding the Expo some more technical and some more personal I hope you enjoy them all.