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Friday, February 24, 2012

Manna for the Temple: Have a Cup of Tea!

Today is the third day of Lent, which means it is my third day without coffee. Boy am I tired! I gave up coffee because I don't like how it makes me feel. It is certainly not personality enhancing! For awhile I even drank espresso with soy milk, which made me instantly hyped up and impatient. But it tasted so good, and it cleared my morning cobwebs quickly. However, praying for patience in my homeschooling efforts and then drinking espresso kind of defeats the purpose, and in addition to serious jitters, my stomach never felt good.

Facebook friends warned me that I would get a headache, but as it turns out, I was going to have one anyway, since the beginning of Lent coincided with my monthly visit from Heavy Aunt Flo. I had at least given up the espresso and was drinking plain old coffee, so the withdrawal wouldn't be so bad.  Besides, Lent is a time for going into the desert for 40 days with Jesus, so a headache is only a little thing from that perspective. It isn't supposed to be easy; one is supposed to sacrifice something. And hurray for me, because I don't have to give up meat on Fridays--I'm already vegetarian!

My goal is to treat my body better, as a temple of the Holy Spirit. While I wasn't excessive in my coffee drinking, it did cause me physical discomfort, and I want to have energy in a more natural way. I want to feel good! (I also want to give up 10 pounds for Lent, which means healthier eating and more exercise.) Still, I want a hot drink in the morning, even in the summer. So with what have I replaced the coffee? I'm going to give a review here of three types of tea that can all be purchased at vitacost.com, which has less expensive prices than you will find in health food stores. Vitacost is a great place to find all kinds of natural and organic products, including vitamins, shampoo, skin care, toothpaste, beauty products, and food.

Organic Ginger tea, from Traditional Medicinals, promotes healthy digestion and is caffeine free. Ginger is also good for respiratory health. It has a strong flavor and is naturally invigorating, so it will pick you up and soothe your stomach, with no jitters. Ginger tea works great for morning sickness, too!

Yerba Mate Royale, from Wisdom of the Ancients, is sweetened with stevia, which is an herb and a healthier alternative to sugar. Yerba mate tea is classified as a nutritional supplement, energizing you with 196 active compounds including vitamins, minerals, and more antioxidants than green tea. This is good, because I can't stand green tea. Yerba mate has less caffeine than coffee or black tea and does not cause the nerve rattling effects. On the box it says, "Licorice Pepper (Piper fulvescens) is the English name we have given this rare rainforest herb." Isn't that lovely? This one is also organic.

Women's Energy tea, by Yogi, helps balance hormones. This is a dong quai tonic, a root extract also known as "women's ginseng." This organic tea also contains juniper berry, cinnamon bark, orange peel, ginger root, fennel seed, chamomile, dandelion, anise, stinging nettle, orange oil, stevia and black pepper. This is a great tasting tonic for any time, even when you are not being visited by Mean Aunt Ruby!

If you already drink tea, now you have some new varieties to enjoy.  I encourage you to try these teas for energy and healing, and for a few quiet minutes to relax and savor a hot drink to pamper yourself. Make it a sacred time to fill the well, that will invigorate you to get up and going again. Whether in a dainty China cup or a handmade pottery mug, have yourself a cup of tea!

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