June 2011 CelebriTEA - Tea Moment

Jen Piccotti/International Tea Moment
June 2011 CelebriTEA: Jen Piccotti, International Tea Blogger Extraordinaire 

We all have our reasons for drinking tea.
But for Jen Piccotti, blogger at International Tea Moment, drinking tea was a family affair.
Originally from Idaho, Jen moved to Orange County, CA, about 11 years ago with her husband. But she's been a tea enthusiast for almost two decades (18 years) and has three solid years of tea blogging under her belt.
Her mother started her on tea early, as they enjoyed cups of tea together. “But it was her sister, my aunt, who took me to my first tea room,” Jen said. The experience changed her world view. Drinking tea, she said, “was a way to connect with loved ones in an old world way.
“Being the closet romantic I am, I absolutely savored that moment and have spent the last 18 years creating and enjoying tea moments as a result.”
Jen took that love of tea international during her college years, while traveling the globe with her sister-in-law. The pair always found a way to have tea, and her sister-in-law dubbed them their “International Tea Moments.”
By then, Jen was hooked – but admits, like many of us tea drinkers, that her favorite teas change almost every week. Right now she’s exploring Russian Caravan teas and other Russian inspired blends. “My palate is not yet loving the ultra-smokiness, though I’ve made some breakthroughs,” Jen explains. “But I’ve been introduced to a black tea blend, Russian-inspired, called Anastasia (thank you, American Tea Room).” Jen calls this tea “strong, with a delicate floral infusion and a whisper of smoke.” Check out her full review in An Anastasia Moment here: http://internationalteamoment.blogspot.com/2011/05/anastasia-moment.html.
Jen said she also loves Chinese green teas, and recommends TeaSource’s “amazing” House Green Tea Blend, plus Long Jing (dragonwell). In fact, her current favorite post is about Dragonwell tea – thanks to inspiration from her readers. Check it out here: http://internationalteamoment.blogspot.com/2011/05/alls-wellthats-dragon-well-moment.html
She didn’t just have a desire to enjoy good cups of tea, though. When she became a mom in 2008, she said she was “ill-equipped…a fish out of water.” Struggling to be a good mother to her daughter, Jen searched for ways to grasp with the familiar to help keep her grounded.
International Tea Moments, her blog, was born – on a whim, she said. She began writing about the International Tea Moments she shared with her sister-in-law years before, and then started expanding on other special moments involving tea.
Once she became more confident in her new role as “Mom,” Jen started to gain confidence in learning more about the world of tea. She blogged about her discoveries and, consequently, met a number of mentors who introduced her to more amazing teas and varieties.
“I love writing about tea with family and friends – reliving the fun conversations, what we ate, the teas we each chose, and sharing why the moment was so special,” Jen said, adding that because of many social networking sites out there nowadays, we (and she includes herself) keep putting off times to meet and share a pot of tea. “We have a diluted sense of connection. I guess that makes each Tea Moment that much more precious.”
Like many of us, tea is still a great way to connect with friends and family – and Jen agrees. “Tea is one of those friendly and accessible traditions that can bring people together and also be a pleasant companion in moments of solitude,” Jen said. “My view is there is no wrong way to ‘do’ tea. If you drink tea, create and enjoy your tea moments exactly as you like. That’s all that matters.”
A scrumptious spread for a Tea Moment; and I love the Fiestaware touches

Name/screen name(s): Jen Piccotti/Tea Moment
Send her your own tea moments to be included in her blog!

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