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Tea Leaves and Transitions: Finding Grace

Seated on an upholstered chair near the fireplace, I stare into the depths of the porcelain cup cradled in my hands, contemplating the patterns of broken tea leaves. I adore this Asian-style vessel, simple and unadorned, round without a handle, with a ceramic infuser that rests inside and removed when the brew has steeped. I own two

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A Winter Garden: Welcoming Grace

The hum of the twenty-year old refrigerator finally shuts off, the cottage goes blessedly silent, and I feel my body relax. In the quiet of a rainy morning, I hear only the irregular staccato cadence of water falling from eaves, boughs, and leaves, rain tapping on the kitchen skylight, and a murmur that one might

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Candles, Tea and Friendship: A Parcel from England

Exiting the Post Office into a bright August afternoon on the California coast, I carried three packages in my hands. One was a book I had ordered, the second was an ‘earthing’ pad for working at my computer, and the third was a brown paper-wrapped parcel from England. The handwriting on the label I instantly

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Tea with Nigel: A Cook Who Writes

A winter storm approaches and the sea is heaving and restless. Seated in the small dining alcove of my cozy writer’s studio, I gaze out at surging waves of liquid pewter, listening to their dull roar. Some seasonal piano music plays quietly in the background, creating a holiday mood while a large red poinsettia and

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Tea and Ritual

I admit it, I travel with my teapot. Two of them, actually. One is a small, sky blue, infuser style pot in which I brew my black tea, while the other is an Asian style cup of pale sage green porcelain (with a ceramic diffuser and lid) in which I steep my green tea. Yes,

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