Steeped Tea Must-Haves for the Holiday Season and New Year

by Peggy Michel, Independent Steeped Tea Consultant

Ahhhh, the holidays!!!  They are quickly approaching!  Some of us love and enjoy them and others hate them and anxiously await a new year.  Either way, they can definitely be stressful, even for those that seem to have it all together…

Today’s blog post includes some of my favorite tea items that have made my life much easier – for both serving and gift giving!

Cheeseball Mixes

Have you tried a tea-based cheeseball mix? Grab your favorite cream cheese and mix the contents of the packet together to create the perfect cheeseball. You can also concoct a dip by substituting Greek yogurt, create a pasta sauce with them, or layer in a pretty dish and add complementary ingredients. The possibilities are endless.  Having these on hand during the holidays is super convenient!

Cheeseball Mix

Flavors include:

  • Pumpkin Cheesecake – serve with graham crackers or vanilla wafers
  • Caramel Apple
  • S’mores
  • Vanilla Cookie (my personal favorite)
  • Garlic Chili – serve with chips or veggies

Priced at $12, each bag makes 8 Cheeseballs!  Money well spent!

Iced Tea Infusion Jug or Sweet Tea Pitcher

These two pitchers are fabulous! Each pitcher holds about 2 bottles of wine. I have used our Winter Sangria Tea with Pinot Grigio for parties and it was a huge hit!

The Iced Tea Infusion Jug has a removable infuser in the center.  You just add your tea leaves of choice and add your hot or cold liquid.

Steeped Tea Iced Tea Infusion Jug

With the Sweet Tea Pitcher, you add the tea leaves directly into the pitcher and add your liquid of choice.  The strainer built into the lid will catch the Tea leaves and just give you a beautiful serving of goodness!  I have used our Berry Mania tea steeped directly into vodka and seltzer and added cut up limes…it looked great and was another successful drink!  I have also steeped our Papaya Sangria in water for my daughters – which they LOVE!  I highly recommend either of these pitchers for giving or serving during the holidays.

MATCHA

I have no idea what I did before I found out about matcha. Matcha is when the green tea leaf is completely ground down into a fine powder and blended directly into your liquid of choice.  There are many health benefits associated with matcha! Personally speaking, I get an abundance of energy when I drink matcha. It is also high in antioxidants, boosts the immune system, detoxifies, and helps stimulates the metabolism, among other things.  It is much different than the burst of energy you get from coffee.  Matcha gives you a “focused alertness” with no jitters.  It is awesome and they come in a variety of flavors. One tin is priced at $39 for 100 servings!  (Only $.39 per serving!)  You can mix matcha in hot water, blend it into smoothies, mix it into yogurt, and add it to pancake or cupcake batter…another item where the possibilities are endless.

Steeped Tea Gingerbread Matcha

The available flavors are:

  • Banana
  • Fruit Punch
  • Gingerbread (pictured)
  • Mocha
  • Peppermint
  • Pineapple Punch
  • Sweet Strawberry
  • Tonia’s Pumpkin
  • Vanilla

Also available is plain Matcha ($39) and Ceremonial ($45). Not sure which to try? A matcha sampler is also available for $60 and comes with the 6 most popular matcha flavors in a sample size.

Pop-Top Tumbler

This Pop-Top Tumbler is amazing! It will keep liquids hot or cold for about 12 hours. This gem comes with a detachable infuser so you can steep your tea right into it!  I use mine every single day as I am constantly on the run with my kids.  It also has a lock to prevent spills! This is an invaluable tumbler to have for $40 (and can be personalized for an additional $10). It is available in 7 colors, is double-walled, stainless steel, BPA free, vacuum sealed and holds 16.9 oz (500 ml).

Steeped Tea Pop-Up Tumbler.jpg

Detox Sampler

This little set has it all! It comes with 50 steeping sacks and 6 different teas – all of which are must-haves for the holiday season! It includes:

  • Don’t Worry be Happy
  • Feminini Tea
  • Hot Yoga
  • Lemon Ginger Tea Tox
  • Immunity Booster
  • Stress Reliever

Steeped Tea Detox Sampler

The Detox Sampler is priced at $40 and can be separated as gifts or stocking stuffers! Who wouldn’t want to give the gift of health this holiday season?

Last, but certainly not least… enter Sleepy Chai.  The holidays could be stressful, and turning off my brain doesn’t happen easily. Sleepy Chai tea totally relaxes me at night; not only do I fall asleep with ease, but I wake up feeling well rested and rejuvenated. Available for $19 for 3.52 oz – I always make sure this is in my pantry!

Steepd Tea Sleepy Chai

All of the above items could be purchased from my Steeped Tea store. I hope my list of tea-must haves has given you ideas and I wish all of you a wonderful holiday season!

Have questions? Contact Peggy at pmic719@hotmail.com and join her Steeped Tea Facebook group!

Namaste.

Tea Must-Haves for the Holiday Season and Beyond

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BOOK REVIEW: Souping is the New Juicing by Cherie Calbom, MS

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. 

When my mom knows I am feeling under the weather, she expects that I will ask her to whip up some homemade chicken noodle soup to ease my sniffles and congestion. As the weather gets colder, I love to experiment with new soup ideas using my slow cooker and pressure cooker. I was eager to review Souping is the New Juicing by Cherie Calbom since I am mostly dairy and gluten free. I have tried juicing and wound up selling my juicer for $25 at a garage sale. I didn’t care for the blueberry stained ceiling. And, who has the time to clean everything? Not me – so souping seems like a more efficient option.

I read Souping is the New Juicing in two days. It’s a very easy, informative read.

Souping is the New Juicing begins with Cherie’s story. I really enjoyed learning about the authors experience that lead her to live a healthier lifestyle. Sometimes it takes tragedy and hardship to change our habits, routines, and roles and ultimately prevail

Living Foods was one of my favorite chapters where Cherie breaks down important components of soups (i.e. asparagus, watercress, cilantro) and explains why they are important. I like to know why foods are good for me to eat, and I learned that rosemary, one of my favorite herbs, has the ability to improve mood, increases intelligence, boosts memory, and relives pain (Souping is the New Juicing, p 55).

Souping is the New Juicing then educates us how to detox with soup. You take quizzes throughout this chapter, discovering if you have a build up of toxicity, and/or if you are in need of a colon, kidney, liver, or lymphatic cleanse. This section is very thorough!

Cherie has a chapter on soups for weight loss. Cherie taught me that mushrooms, legumes, watercress, almonds and coconut oil are great for weight loss. (Souping is the New Juicing, 117-118). I haven’t tried watercress, but am going to put that on my shopping list for my next soup adventure.

I appreciate all of the research that Cherie has put into Souping is the New Juicing. She has many studies and sources listed, which helps me to understand why souping works!

The last chapter of the book is dedicated to recipes. Categories of soup recipes include:

  • raw blender
  • gently warmed
  • creamy
  • vegetable
  • healing
  • detox
  • soups with legumes
  • soups with muscle meat

I appreciate that all of the recipes are gluten, dairy, and sugar free.

Although it’s ideal to cook soup in a stock pot on the stove, most of the recipes in this book can be prepared in my Blend-Tec, pressure cooker or slow cooker. I also recommend a good immersion blender.

I experimented – not quite following the recipes in the book, but including ingredients that Cherie mentioned in the third chapter. (The right picture, below contains chicken broth, water, spinach, leeks, sweet potatoes, jalapenos, and onions that I threw together in my pressure cooker. The left picture contains vegetable broth, sweet potatoes, leeks, and spinach that was the result of 8 hours in the slow cooker.)

Soups certainly warms my soul, and they definitely make me feel good about myself. I know that I am giving my body what it deserves – nutrients, vitamins, minerals, enzymes…and the list continues… Souping is the New Juicing by Cherie Calbom

Souping is the New Juicing is a terrific reference and a constant go-to on my cookbook shelf. I would recommend Souping is the New Juicing to anyone looking to incorporate healthy soups into their diet.

About Cherie Calbom

Cherie Calbom earned a Master of Science degree in whole foods nutrition from Bastyr University. She is the author of 35 books including Juicing for Life with more than 2 million books sold in the U.S. and published in 23 countries. She has worked as a celebrity nutritionist with George Foreman and Richard Simmons, and has appeared on numerous radio and TV shows. Known as “The Juice Lady” for her work with juicing and health, her juice therapy and cleansing programs have been popular for more than a decade.

Visit Cherie’s website, and be sure to visit her on Facebook, and Twitter.

Namaste.

UncommonGreen: Streets. Neighborhoods. Coordinates. Etched in glass.

“Where have you traveled?”

I love hearing about where other people have experienced. Were they able to get to all the touristy spots? Did they enjoy the food? Tell me everything…

I haven’t been many too many places, but a few places stick out in my mind. When UncommonGreen reached out to me about a blog post, I jumped at getting a pint glass with a city of my choice etched on it. Cool, huh?

About

UncommonGreen is a lifestyle brand founded in Boston, Massachusetts. They create custom maps on glassware (like coffee mugs, pint, wine and whiskey glasses), states printed on slate boards (think displaying cheese and fruit), prep boards for dicing and slicing, and decor (candles and bar towels). 

UncommonGreen

Behind the Brand

UncommonGreen began in 2009 when designer Brian Johnson wanted to make everyday products that featured artistry paired with functionality, practicality, sustainability, and style. When his three college friends, Dave Reddy, Neil Angis, and Colin Woodworth came onboard, they decided to focus their vision on an innovative design. Creating exceptional goods with a conscience, UncommonGreen uses materials and packaging from the US, and employs Earth-friendly practices to create their unique form of art.

Experience

I ordered a pint glass with a map of New York City etched on it. I love traveling into the city to see a Broadway show, eat at a fancy restaurant, go to an exhibit at a museum, or go shopping. The city that never sleeps is a fun and exciting place. When I sit on my couch in the middle of my suburban NJ home, I get a wave of nostalgia from my teenage years into my twenties each sip I take out of UncommonGreen pint glass. I have many great memories in NYC and look forward to my next adventure in the Big Apple!

UncommonGreen makes a perfect gift for the person who has everything. If you have a family member or friend who has completed a marathon, why not get them a wine or pint class with the marathon route etched on it? What a great, celebratory gift!

UncommonGreen

Who on your Christmas list enjoys visiting mountains and canyons? Check out the topography rocks glasses where they could enjoy their favorite whiskey near the campfire and reminiscence about their vacation. One of these days I will visit the Grand Canyon!

Know a mathematicianUncommonGreen has a Math and Science glassware for Pi-fanatics, geneticists, chemists, and engineers. History buff? Read all the classics? Check out the History and Literature collection where you could get rocks glasses and candles with your favorite sayings.

Relive the cool summer breeze from your Nantucket honeymoon or the magic of Martinique in the moonlight. Every time you pick up a glass from UncommonGreen’s Island Collection you’ll be transported to a place you won’t want to leave.

You can travel the world, but there really is no place like home. The Hometown Collection enables customers to order custom glasses from ANY city, town or locale in the US! I would love to get another pint glass of Morristown, NJ etched on it; that is where my husband and I met back in December 2010.

UncommonGreen designs make unique, fun gifts and conversation starters. Reminisce your favorite trip with the intricately designed pieces from UncommonGreen this holiday season!

Namaste.

Follow UncommonGreenInstagram, TwitterPinterest and Facebook.

Disclosure: I received a pint glass from UncommonGreen complimentary for review purposes. All opinions within are my own. If you would like your product or service featured on Realm of Vibes, please contact realmofvibesdg@gmail.com 

5 Affirmations to Get You Through the Holiday Season

by Nicole Martin

What is an affirmation? Simply stated, affirmations are consciously controlled thoughts.  Affirmations are strong, positive statements that you intentionally think or say out loud. They are extremely helpful when your typical stream of worries and topic-hopping thoughts could rival any goldfish. During the holiday season, our minds tend to go wild.

Affirmations can also be very powerful on the human psyche.  When used regularly, they help to rewire our brain towards positive thinking and help battle negative emotions and thoughts.

The holiday season is a great time to start practicing affirmations. While we all want to be blissful and joyous during this time of year, the reality is that we are ferociously finishing our shopping lists, cleaning our houses and preparing for holiday dinners, and are often left feeling exhausted and stressed. The power of positive words and thoughts can help negate some of these holiday emotions.

Christmas

Try reading through some of the affirmations below; say each sentence out loud (it’s ok, you can go hide in the bathroom) and see how your mindset shifts towards joy.  Several slow, deep breaths only strengthen your experience and will help you to reach true peace and happiness.

  • When your To-Do List feels overwhelming“I breathe in and out, knowing that what I need to get done, will get done.”
  • When you feel obligated to go to every holiday party and function: “I have the power to choose how I spend my time during the holidays.”
  • When you feel burnt out: “It’s okay to practice self-care and to rest, relax and recharge.”
  • When you are anxious about intrusive questions “I release all holiday stress and expectations of what I think that I should be. I allow myself to be me.”
  • When you are worried about holiday spending: “Money comes to me easily and unexpectedly. “

Feel free to tweak the wording in these statements so that they are even more meaningful for you.  Remember, positive thinking is like exercise – the more you practice, the stronger you’ll become at leveraging these statements in the thick of a stressful moment.

May you find moments of serenity during the holiday season! Cheers!

Nicole Martin is a personal development coach who empowers moms to live their best life possible!  After achieving what she believed was an ideal life, Nicole recognized that she still was not fulfilled, and set off on a DIY personal development journey. Now, she brings her life & career experiences, intuition, and a nurturing energy to other moms who are looking for “more” (don’t worry, she’ll help you define what that is!)  Find Nicole at www.wellandguidedmoms.com and on Instagram.

5 Affirmations to Get You Through the Holiday Season

Half Marathon Hydration with Hydrant

Hindsight is always 20/20. My mom and I tackled our first half marathon a month ago. We didn’t train very much, and we certainly underestimated the hilly course. To make matters even more challenging, it was raining the entire duration of the 13.1 grueling miles. We learned to embrace the suck and really had to use mental strength to make it across the finish line. At mile twelve, Mom and I started to experience leg cramps. I was hydrating with coconut water and Gatorade, but if I stopped moving, even for one second, my legs would scream, “Sit down. You’re done.” I wish I had something to sustain me…

When John Sherwin, the founder of Hydrant, sent me samples of his new hydration mix product, I thought, “I really could have used this during the half marathon.” I went to his website to learn more.

Hydrant Hydration Mix

 

Hydrant is a simple, scientifically designed formula that has 3 times more electrolytes than sports drinks on the current market.  Available as small powder stick packs in Lemon Lime flavor (my favorite!), they are easy to store in a backpack or duffle bag. Outdoor enthusiasts or endurance athletes just need to add it to water and can hydrate anytime, anywhere.

Ingredients

Sugar (11 grams), Sodium Citrate, Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Salt, Magnesium Citrate, Zinc Gluconate., Lemon Juice Powder, Lime Juice Powder, Natural Lemon Flavor.

Highlights of Hydrant:

  • Includes a combination of balanced electrolytes, a bit of sugar and light natural lemon-lime flavor
  • Vegan
  • Kosher
  • Gluten Free
  • Dairy Free
  • NON-GMO
  • No artificial colors or flavors
  • 50 calories per stick

  • Claims to improve cognition, lift spirits, and reduce headaches.
  • Manufactured in the USA

Directions

Add one pack in 500 mL (16.9 ounces) of water.

Experience

My husband and I are very active people. We love hiking (we accomplished two of the 46 High Peaks earlier this year) and taking our dogs for long walks and runs. I go to weekly hot yoga and body pump classes. I also just took my first Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu class. I really enjoy exercise and strive to be a fit, healthy person.

This week I decided to try Hydrant after my 5-mile run. I came home, emptied the packet into a glass, added water, and stirred. Perfection.

 

Hydrant Hydration Mix

Hydrating with Hydrant after my 5-Mile Run

 

I love the flavor of lemon-lime; Hydrant does not disappoint. It’s cold, tart, and easily drinkable. Within 5 minutes, I feel like my life is restored! I am still sweating profusely from the class, but I feel re-energized and I am ready to go home, shower, and tackle the upcoming workday.

I would purchase Hydrant for my husband and I engage in prolonged, intense exercise. It was easy to mix together, the packets can be taken anywhere, and the lemon-lime flavor was delicious. Hydrant is the perfect during and post workout hydration beverage.

Purchase Hydrant on their website and visit them on social media: Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Hydrant Hydration Mix

Disclosure: I received samples of Hydrant complimentary for review purposes; all opinions within are my own. If you would like your product reviewed on Realm of Vibes, please e-mail realmofvibesdg@gmail.com or visit my Contact page for more information.

 

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