Sunday

A cup of tea, with Sonya.


I am quite passionate about tea and because i hugely enjoy both drinking it and talking about it i have "sat down" together with some lovely tea drinking ladies and asked them a few questions about their relationship with tea.
This time it is sweet Sonya and i who are having our tea-time together.




V: I already know that you are a coffee lover who also enjoys a cup of tea, i am curious to get to hear about how long you have been drinking tea? And what about coffee?

S: First, thank you for inviting me to do your tea conversation. I was so happy to be on your blog. I started drinking tea when I was in primary school. We would have cups of tea with toast, or chamomile tea to sooth a sore tummy ache, or for a sore throat with honey. I started drinking coffee in high school. Especially when a new girl that lived over the fence read coffee cups. Turkish coffee, (the type you boil on the stove top and it leaves a lot of coffee ground in your cup) so I drank a lot so she could tell me about the future with my latest crush.
 
 
V: You are from Melbourne and i actually know very little about the tea traditions in your country. Can you share a bit about that with us?
S: Tea is big in Australia, people will always offer you a 'cuppa' (a cup of tea). People will always ask if you would like a tea or coffee  and put some biscuits out too. There is a huge selection of tea, there are many tea shops and lots of people sell and make there own blends. There is so much to choose from in the supermarket too.

 
 
V: What are your favourite tea(s)?
S. Lady grey, I love the orangey/flowery flavour. I also like english breakfast with a touch of milk. I love chai, especially Otway chai, an organic homemade brew, in Victoria. 


V: Do you prefer loose tea or tea bags?
S: In a quiet and not so busy life, I would prefer loose tea. It is almost a ceremony, a time to sit down and relax, or catch up with a dear friend, but everyday it would have to be tea bags.


V: When in the day, and also why, do you mostly chose a cup of tea instead of coffee?
S: I would choose tea over coffee in the late afternoon, because I drink herbal tea to wind down.


V: Do a lot of your friends and family drink tea?
S: My family (traditionally, my parents are from Macedonian) are coffee drinkers, turkish coffee. A lot of my friends do drink tea. 





V: Does your drinking of tea depend upon which season it is? Are there a specific season that you drink more tea?
S: I enjoy tea more in the winter, to warm up. It is a comforting drink, a drink that almost feels like a tonic/cure for anything you are lacking at the time. It can help with moods, it can enhance your food, it can soothe an ailment. It is almost like a little cup of magic. 


V: Do you drink iced tea too or only warm?

S: I love iced tea, it is so refreshing and light.


V: Do you have any favourite cups or mugs?

S: I like big cups for herbal tea, special cup and saucer when I have a friend over with a pot of tea. Thank you again.

Friday

Monthly quote: May.





"Worrying is like praying for what you don't want."
-Unknown




(inspired by the lovely Ruthie, from the wonderful blog raincloud & sage, i am going to join her in the beginning of every month with making a Monthly quote post in here. feel free to join in too...*smiling...).

Sunday

A conversation with Blythe.

 
There are so many women that inspires me in their own unique way and through these conversation posts you and i get the pleasure of getting to know a bit more about them....about what it is that inspires them, what a typical day in their life looks like, where they find beauty.....and much more...*smiling.
This time it is the lovely Blythe that are sharing about herself and her life with us.



 
V: First dear Blythe i just want to say how excited i am about having this conversation with you and also to get to share you with my readers....*smiling. I thought it could be a nice way to start with you introducing yourself to us!?
B: Well, I'm 19 years old and I'm an avid crafter. I've tried just about every craft out there, but have found my calling in ceramics. I also help my dad run his organic produce business out of our house in our little town called Social Circle just east of Atlanta, Ga. I'm single as of right now, but my dream is to get married and have a lot of children while continuing in my ceramics! I'm a dedicated Christian and I love to help others in need.

 
V: 5 words that you would chose to describe yourself?
B: Creative, Supportive, Introvert, Kind, Feminine.



V: Words you try to live by?
B: Hard Work, Patience, Quality, Dedication.

 






V: What are your biggest passions in life?
B: Some of my greatest passions are, serving God and others; living my life in a unique way; pottery of course, and children. I'm a born nanny. I love to babysit and do anything with children.


V: I know that you are a very creative/crafty girl and you also play quite a lot of different instruments. I am curious to know if you grew up in a family were there were a lot of focus/time spent on music and crafts?
B: I am still living with my family right now and it is really great to see my younger siblings (and my cousins who live with us) get the same joy that I did from learning new things. I was homeschooled most of my life, so yes, we had "Music Time" everyday and when my mom would read to us all, my sisters and I would have some kind of crochet project to work on. (We still do!)


V: Are there any specific people that has especially inspired you on your creative path, that has played an important role?
B: My mother is the most artistic person I know. She taught me how to crochet and how to pick out fabrics that go together and most importantly, how to teach myself. And of course that lead me to teach myself how to knit; and how to sew, play guitar, drums, ukelele, and everything up until pottery and beyond. I'm learning more everyday because of her constant inspiration.
 








 
V: Please share with us the story about how you started up with ceramics and also about the chosing of the name "Nettie Christine" for your brand?
B: My pottery journey started about 3 years ago... A friend of mine, who was a missionary, lived in the Dominican Republic with her family. Her mother had been doing pottery for a long time. After her mother died suddenly from catching dengue fever, she and the rest of her family moved back to the states for the funeral and grieving process. She came around a few times that spring and she and I would go do pottery at another friend's house who had been keeping her mother's wheel and kiln. The first time I slammed a piece of clay onto that wheel, I was hooked! There is just something so special about taking a dull round lump and making it into something beautiful. Plus: I get to sling dirt and mud around anytime I want and even put it on my face and hair too! (see question #2 and add "Messy" to it) Anyway, about 2 weeks later, I used all of my graduation money to buy my first wheel, which is the same one I use today. I made so many things that summer, but I didn't have anywhere to fire them! So I signed up for a beginners pottery class, expecting to just fire all my stuff and not learn that much. But I learned a lot and thats what makes me the potter I am. After that class was over, I continued to teach myself off youtube and experience. Later I found out that my neighbor is also a potter and she had a kiln! For a few months I traded kiln firing for studio cleaning with her until I finally purchased my super old, but incredibly perfect very own kiln (named Piper)! So I now sell my creations online (nettiechristine.etsy.com) and I am slowly getting in to making this my full time job! And I hate to use the word "job" because thats the total opposite of what I do everyday. I go have fun, get messy and create! Listen to music, or watch netflix. It's the best "job" ever!!
 
The Name of Nettie Christine.
The name of my shop is incredibly special to me. It's my aunt's name, who was diagnosed with lung cancer just last year. Her name was always (and still is) so beautiful to me. I was actually really jealous... haha. But I asked her if she would possibly let me use it and she gave me her blessing. It's days like this, especially, that I'm so grateful to have used it because she isn't well at all. (as a side note, will you be in prayer for her? For peace and comfort above all) She is an amazing lady and completely inspiring. My hope is to put her on display though my work, that a little piece of her is in every design that I make. And just so you know, she completely approves of my lace mugs!! :)


 
V: What kind of value and importance does creating with your hands have in your life? And what about music/playing instruments?
B: Creating with my hands and playing music IS my life. I don't know what I would do if I didn't have these things. I think I would feel completely at loss. My greatest tool is my hands. When it comes to pottery, guitar or even just sewing a button on a shirt, I value them with GREAT importance.







V: Of all the skills you have/crafts you master are there one of them that feels closer to your heart than the others? If so, why?
B: 1st is definitely ceramics. I will never tire from creating a piece of art from a form of the earth.  The feeling of it running against your hands is indescribable. But almost as close is crocheting. Ive been a crocheter since I was 8 years old. It's something that runs in my family... All 3 of my sisters crochet. My mom, grandmother, great grandmother all crochet as well. I hope to teach my children too one day and would be so grateful to see them make it into their greatest passion.

 

V: If you were to explore/learn something completely new what would that be and why?
B: I have always wanted to learn how to shepherd sheep and harvest their wool to make yarn. I do plan on having that experience at some point in my life. I think there would be something so special about making a sweater or whatever from something right outside your door in the pasture that you nurtured and cared for for so long.



V: Where do you find inspiration/what inspires you?
B: The culture we live in is so different from the life I live. I think my inspiration comes from being who I am and not who I'm "suppose" to be. Im very passionate about being who you are called to be and not going the way of the world. And I'm so glad to see so many people stepping out and taking a stand for what they believe in and being who they are!
 
On another note, my design inspiration comes from life. Nature and hard work. Being patient and making a good and unique piece is important to me and I don't want to always take the easy way out, just to make life easier.
 








 
V: Favourite time of the day and why?
B: Morning, definitely. When all is quiet and the birds are singing. It's such a pleasure to be able to experience the delight of a silent morning alone.
 

 
V: While i am writing to you now i have a beewax candle burning beside me and the scent is so wonderful. I have so many precious and happy memories from my childhood that are connected to this scent (my grandfather were a beekeeper). Makes me curious to know if there are any specific scents that brings back happy memories from your childhood?
B: Sunday Morning Breakfast. My grandmother's homemade biscuits. We use to drive to my grandmother's on sunday mornings to eat breakfast with our whole family. My great grandmother passed down her biscuit recipe to my grandmother, who has been baking them every sunday for 40 or so years. We all tried to make them at one point in our lives, but my (only boy) cousin is the only one who inherited the biscuit making skill.

 

V: As a closing i want to ask you if you would share with us what you are most grateful for in your life right now? I also want to thank you for giving me and my readers this opportunity to get to know you better, it has been lovely and inspiring.
B: I am most grateful for my family and my Savior. My family have always been by my side through every decision I've ever made. They support me in everything I do. 
 
Thank YOU for this wonderful opportunity!!!
 
 
Blythe is kindly offering you 15% off at her Etsy shop with the use of the coupon code: ABIMH15. The coupon code will expire on Sept. 1st 2015. And for those of you, like me, who doesn't live in the States: Blythe will gladly setup your item for international shipping upon request....*smiling!!


Links:
Etsy, Instagram and Website.
 

Friday

happiness

 






if i am not here you will find me on my veranda, or in the garden..
i am not able to describe how amazing the last days have been, FINALLY the spring warmth arrived and i have been staying outside from early morning until almost bedtime. this outside living makes me filled with such a deep sense of peace...of refreshment, gratitude and happiness.

on tuesday i went to visit my mother. she has started the season of working the fields now, first with preparing the soil for sowing wheat. since i knew she were working long and hard days i wanted to come to her home and make her a nice dinner and surprise her with doing some planting of new flowers outside their home. while i was outside planting i were sorrounded by wonderful and intense birdsong. my mother lives even closer to the forest than i do so it is quite a difference in which birds that one can see and hear there compared to where i live. we have of course also some of the same ones but it is always birds at her feeders that i don't have at ours.
a woodpecker were working quite closely to were i were doing the planting, what a hard worker he is! it felt quite special to spend time "together" with him...*smiling. several yellow butterflies (and one brown one) were also joining us. i had hoped to see the squirrel that is often visiting my mother's feeders but he were probably occupied with other adventures that day because i didn't see him.




 
 
despite that i am not knitting these days because of my arms i am keeping my yarns close.......*smiling!

Thursday

Knittings




I have been knitting so intensly the last week that i have to force myself into having a few days of non-knitting now before i finish what i am knitting on. My arms and neck badly needs it! It's so easy to get completely "carried away"...*smiling. My dear friend Anu gifted me some gorgeous yarn for my birthday and i decided to combine it with another yarn to get a "fluffy" look and feeling to it, and also to get the specific gauge that i needed for knitting the Petunia cardigan by Pam Allen.
I hugely look forward to get it finished so i can start wearing it!

These days i am "living" in my Sibella pullover, a favourite! I actually think that i need to knit myself a second one of this...*smiling.. Maybe one in ink blue...or maybe bottle green...

I am going to knit a cardigan for a dear and far away friend of mine later this spring. So excited to get to see which design, color(s) and yarn that she decides upon!

I am hugely enjoying Mandarine's podcasts. Earlier this year i knitted her hat pattern, it was such a lovely knit. And her pretty Canopy shawl is high up on my want-to-knit list!
Another pattern that is high up on my list is Gudrun Johnston's Belmont cardigan....so soooo pretty.

Happy weekend sweet ones,
with or without knitting in you hands!
xxx




“ribbing, moss, seed, and garter are all balanced and combine the yin and yang of knitting”      
-Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

Sunday

Tea swap (now closed).






Sweet ones

It's time to invite you to a swap again

and
this time it is TEA...*smiling..
Here is how it goes:

-The swap is international, everyone can enter.
-I will put two and two of you into pairs, it is a direct swap: you will swap with the same person that sends to you.
-If you like to join in just send me your post address on duftenaverteblomster@yahoo.com
NOTE: If you have any specific likings/not likings, allergies or links to own blog/instagram/facebook that you would like to share with your swap partner write that with too.
-Sign up closes at end of thursday the 16'th of april and i will send you the info for your swap partner in the weekend. You are all free to take direct contact with your swap partner to decide upon the cost/amount together.



Ps: my pretty porcelain tea spoon is by Atelier Nausika.
 

Saturday

My Nettie Christine mug (and a discount for you)







I want to introduce you to my newest mug, her name is Pink Ombré Paint Splatter Mug and she is from Nettie Christine. The girl behind Nettie Christine is the ceramicist Blyhte Kelley. She is such a bright, lovely and inspiring soul and i am very excited to tell you that you will get the opportunity to get to know more about her later this spring through a conversation blog post in here. When i first came across Blythe's work, through Instagram, one of the first things that caught my eye and attention were both the lovely name, Nettie Christine, and the beautiful logo with the bird. Like many of you already know i am very passionate about independent makers and i find it very interesting and inspiring to learn more about the maker and their creative process. So my satisfaction were big when i could actually get to read the story behind the name through her Etsy:

"The name I chose for my shop has a lot of meaning behind it. It's my great Aunt's name. When we first found out that my Aunt Chris was diagnosed with lung cancer, I was just starting my shop and contemplating a name. I had always loved my Aunt's full given name and thought how lucky she was and that she could use it for her own shop, if she ever had one. Then the idea hit me and I asked her if she would allow me to use it for my shop name and she said yes! How excited I was! So there you have it. And I hope to make her name great and known for a long time. :)"





 
I am madly in love with everything about my new cup...*smiling..




 


Blythe is kindly offering you 15% off at her Etsy shop with the use of the coupon code: ABIMH15. The coupon code will expire on Sept. 1st 2015. And for those of you, like me, who doesn't live in the States: Blythe will gladly setup your item for international shipping upon request....*smiling!!


Links:
Etsy, Instagram and Website.


All pictures are Blythe's own except for the last one which is my own.

Thursday

A cup of tea, with Jordanna.


I am quite passionate about tea and because i hugely enjoy both drinking it and talking about it i have "sat down" together with some lovely tea drinking ladies and asked them a few questions about their relationship with tea.
This time it is the sweet Jordanna and i who are having our tea-time together.



V: Have you been drinking tea for a long time?
J: Ever since I was a little girl— probably four or five? My grandmother used to
make me what she called “angel tea”, which was black tea with a lot of milk, or
perhaps milk with a little bit of tea. She taught me the “proper” way of making
tea by warming the pot first, and all that. She showed me the enjoyment of
having a moment with your tea, and a beautiful china cup and simply enjoying
that moment.


V: What are your favourite teas?
J: I really love a traditional English breakfast, with a little milk and sugar. I’m
really quite boring that way. Lately though, as the weather starts to brighten a
bit, I like the freshness of this one that’s green tea with lemongrass and
spearmint— it’s so refreshing, even as a hot drink! As for novelty-teas,
DavidsTea makes this one that’s called Forever Nuts, and it tastes like a cup of
pie, or maybe granola. It’s wonderful.


V: Do you prefer loose tea or teabags?
J: Loose tea, although it’s definitely a hassle sometimes! I bring a tea bag with my
travel mug if I know I’m going to be out and about.


 
 


V: Where do you mostly buy your tea?
J: There’s a place called DavidsTea in Canada. I think it started in Toronto. In
any case, they’re all over the place now, and they have a huge variety of loose
leaf tea.


V: Something specific that you like to eat together with your tea?
J: Ohhhh a good scone, or a shortbread cookie. I also love these Swedish ginger
snaps called Nyåkers, which are amazing dipped in tea. The only downside is
they are often broken by the time they get to Canada!


V: Most times do you do something while having your tea?
J: Knitting, or reading, or writing. Sometimes just sitting with my fiancé and
talking in the morning. Reading is my favourite, though: a cozy spot, with a hot
cup and a good book is my idea of a perfect moment.


 
 


V: Do you often drink tea together with friends and/or family?
J: Most of my friends and family are far from me, but when we do meet, it’s
almost always for a cup of tea. I have a tea selection of teas I don’t even like for
when they come to visit me. :)

 
V: How does a typical "tea-day" look like for you?
J: Every single day of the week I wake up around 6.30-7 and make tea. It gets my
day going, it gives me a moment to just relax, wake up, and warm up
(especially this time of year). Sometimes I have another in the afternoon, while
I’m writing papers, or in the evening, relaxing with Adam. Right now I’ve got
these invisible braces for your teeth called Invisalign, and it means I can’t have
hot drinks while they’re in (22 hrs a day). It’s slowly killing me, I think. It takes
me ages to drink a cup, and I hate rushing it.






V: Which cup of the day do you enjoy the most and why?
J: Now that’s a difficult question! I don’t think I can really pick— I love them
both for different reasons: My morning, because it warms me, and wakes me,
and it’s just such a ‘cozy’ feeling having it. My day is all off if I don’t get to have
a morning tea. And the afternoon because it usually tastes better for some
reason. Maybe I’m paying more attention while I’m making it when I’m not
half-asleep still. It gives my day a little lift.


V: Do you have any favourite tea cups or mugs?
J: Oh, definitely. I use this green one almost every single day. It’s not even a
favourite mug for any esthetic or functional reason: it’s purely because I know
exactly the proportions of what goes in it. I switch to other mugs and
everything is haywire. But I really love this one, from my grandmother. Isn’t it
beautiful? The purple flowers make me smile every time. I had a mug with
Shakespearean insults all over, but it’s the only thing my cat will drink from, so
now it’s his water dish.