Tuesday, March 31, 2020


"Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way.” Edward de Bono

I have had my days and nights mixed up now for what seems like forever, but in reality it has not even been a week. I saw a meme this morning and it said what a long year its been this week and it is only Tuesday and I agree it does feel like that part of the time.  While my entire schedule has been off I have tried to keep some sort of routine and at least still do my morning (or afternoon) tea photo. If you are new to my blog this is something I have done every morning (save one or two weeks of being very sick and bed ridden) since my mother passed away in September of 2010.  For me it is a way of grounding myself, taking a much needed "me moment" and if you have instagram you ca find it at @teawithkaren.

So what have I been doing in the moments between the chaos...
Well I have gone through my clothing and in true Marie Kondo Style, I thanked and parted with two large bags of clothing. I organized my laundry closet, put away my Christmas decoration bins and started on my room. 

I have sewn 20 masks for friends and family whom are medically sensitive or working on the front lines. 

I painted a beautiful sign for my gate, which now is a total mess due to the rain we got over night. Not to worry though I made a large impulse buy which I am sure will help me fix that in the coming days, bare with me as I learn to use a new piece of tech. 

I have been starting seeds for my container gardening plan and sleeping a lot. I am surprised that I am still really tired even though I seem to sleep every few hours...my therapist says that it is the body and brains. response to trauma.  I have the best case of bed head...

The important part I am taking from this is that in the coming days there will be more pockets of joy, and that it is okay that even in the current crisis, to take time for yourself. My goal going forward is to try to add some reading back into my day. I have found that to be one of the hardest parts, I have ADHD and my mind never seems to shut off and makes it really hard to read in times of stress. I am working on it though. 

I hope this post finds you well. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmial.com 

Saturday, March 28, 2020


“Sometimes the most important thing in a whole day is the rest we take between two deep breaths”-Etta Hillesum

Greetings from my table to yours. Hoping that this post finds you in good spirits. It has been a long week, Saturday offered me a bit of refuge in that while I could not sleep more than a few hours last night, I did get a restful nap in. I woke up feeling much better than I have in days. I think the lack of normal routine and the daily constant flow of information, and panic have more than taking its toll.

I have tried not being on social media constantly and have binge watched Marie Kondo on Netflix this week. If you are not familiar with this show its about a lovely and very enthusiastic Japanese lady who helps you to organize and prioritize your belongings based on weather or not they bring you joy.    After my nap I found the energy to create a mountain of my clothes...and parted with almost two full garbage bags of my clothing.  Still overwhelmed by how much I actually had, and still have.  My room is an on going nightmare, I mean progress. 
I did one drawer the junk drawer in my kitchen and way more success and gratification with that one. 
I ventured out to the grocery store for the first time in a week, grabbed some much needed fruit, and perishables, and Doritos, returned home and made my first really non pasta dinner in a week and sat down to write my blog. I did feel odd being out, nervous, but not overwhelmed. Glad that with what I got I should not need to go out for at least another week and a half. 
I have downloaded a book to my kindle I hope to read if I can keep my eyes open that is. 
I hope that wherever you are that you are safe and comfortable in these strange times. 
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com 

Friday, March 27, 2020

Friday Check In, The New Normal

“Strength grows in the moments where you think you can’t go on but you keep going anyway”-author unknown

It's Friday, almost 7:30 at night and I am exhausted, this is after a three hour nap and a day of wonder and trauma. I spent almost two hours on line applying for EI and that pretty much took every ounce of energy I had. The delicate balance of optimism and anxiety is a wire act I just feel I have not had the correct training for. I had lots of plans of productivity today and instead of being able to follow through on easiest of the best made plans, I did very little. I ate PB&J for the second day in a row and not out of  desperation but comfort. I spoke to my Aunt Sandi this morning, the loss of her sister has taken a huge toll on our family this week. My Aunt Nat lost her battle with Cancer, and they live 3,000 miles from here. I can be of little help. 
“At the end of your day, all you need is hope and strength. Hope that it will get better and strength to hold on until it does” -author unknown
Holding on to this quote a little tighter tonight and riding the waves of grief and uncertainty, hoping things are a little easier on all of you.
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at  karenmowen@gmail.com 

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Container Growing Challenge and A Cup of Tea...

"To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow."- Audrey Hepburn
I will admit to being a very novice gardener. I am starting some container plants of vegetables and fruit as well as cat nip for my cat (and to add to my own tea if I can get it to grow).

 Motivated by the current pandemic situation partly, and serious curiosity and I am setting out to see just how green my thumb actually is...

I think I make gardening look good! LOL well lets see how this goes....I am guessing I should likely label the seedlings right?
Here goes everything, stay tuned and send me your tips for growing from seeds and in containers and in shade and in a rain forest....heck you might just need to send me salad dressing before you know it!
Thanks for stopping by for a cup of tea and a look at my container gardening debut.
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Tea-a-storic Times call for Tea-a-storic Maeasures... A Roary The Tea Rex Story By Karen Margaret.

This is Roary The Tea Rex. Roary is feeling very isolated at the moment because things are not quite the same as they were a little while ago. A very serious virus called the Covid-19 Virus has all the grownups, kids, dinosaurs and unicorns very concerned. In order to keep as many people safe as possible, people are being asked to stay away from work, schools, daycare centers, their grandparents their friends and playgrounds.  Working together to stay home and keep people safe is the best thing people, unicorns and dinosaurs can do. Unless you are a first line worker like, hang on this is a long list....Grocery Store Superheros, Doctors, Nurses, Hospital Staff, Janitors, Garbage/Recycling People, Post Office Workers, Pharmacists, Police, Fire and Ambulance Drivers and Paramedics as well as Bus Drivers,  Chefs and Delivery people, who are all doing the best they can to keep us all safe and well. 

Roary is keeping busy, but Roary is feeling a bit sad not seeing in person, friends and family. But Roary had a plan...
The weather is really nice in the back garden and the grown ups say as long as you stay in the garden you will protect yourself and your friends. So Roary had a plan to have a tea party. Roary set the table with a very spring like table cloth, got out the tea pot, two plates and two cups and saucers. Roary Placed the cups, plates and saucers on the table and the cream and sugar. A beautiful bouquet of flowers was just what the back garden tea party needed for a pop of color. Roary was getting very excited.

Roary filled each cup with the teapot, 

Placing one cup and saucer at each place... but something was still missing.

Roary was almost ready, but missing their best friend Frankie...
So Roary asked a grown up to Face Time Frankie, and the two friends enjoyed a nice visit and a lovely tea party, in the garden and still kept each other safe, neither friend felt lonely today.

Roary and Frankie would like you to know that if you liked this story, we would love you to share it with someone you love. 

Remember make a cup of tea and connect with someone you love and miss today. 
I would love to hear from you so please leave us a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com  

What is The Story of Wonder Woman...

I love Wonder Woman, and I saw this and completely impulse bought it last week. This is a series of books I love and have read with my boys over the last few years. We have read many books in this series and one of the things I have enjoyed most about this series is that it is written for kids but doesn't sugar coat things. I learned quite a bit, not just about who made Wonder Woman, but I also learned about the way the world was and how the woman's movement played and active roll in the evolution of Wonder Woman.

 This was a great and fast read for me, one I think families can read together and appreciate, I think this book would make a great gift as well. I found my book at Micheal's the Craft store here in Canada but I know most book sellers on line will have this and that in the past I have ordered this series from Amazon.ca , Indigo.ca and The Book Depository.

I hope that you find time to learn something new and to read today. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Social Distancing, Day 1

Well as of last night I am not currently employed. I am not sure if I am over or under reacting at any given time to the events that are unfolding hourly around the world and here at home. I want to stay home and do my part but it has for me like many other people been a double edge sword. Fighting an invisible enemy, one who doesn't seem to care about your age, social status, ability to fight, nor your undesired ability to be a carrier with out knowing. I have tried to reconcile and make sense of things and trust what I cannot see. Hope that our provincial, and our federal governments can and will assist us going forward into the unknown.
My last day for now at Murchie's was yesterday as I said, I tried to keep myself as safe as possible and sewed a few face masks to wear when others were in the store. I will say it does give me a bit of comfort but not the invincibility I was craving. I am happy to be home and devastated not to be at work at the same time. I have been afraid to sit and write not wanting to add to the overwhelming information and misinformation that is all around us.  But I think now I am going to continue to write my blog again, about happy things and about all the things that are good, and beautiful around me.
My new outfit for "social distancing" arrived today, hope it adds some cheer to your tea time and for the neighborhood walk I am planning on taking daily. For now I leave with you this, laugh often, rest, and make tea.
I promise to share more now that I seem to have a lot of free time on my hands...
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

I am exhausted...

I am exhausted, bone tired and weary, not just because I am recovering from having Influenza A, but because of the constant state fear of the news and the covid 19 virus information and misinformation we keep getting.

I am lucky I live in Canada where I think the medical services have done an outstanding job thus far. We have had one death and yes it is in the community in which I live, and new cases are being reported every day but I feel like we are mostly safe. 

Then I get to work and I realize by the lack of traffic, and customers that fear is gripping our communities.

It is effecting every business, family and activity. Hourly I seem to check to see what is closed next, do I send the kids to school? Do we cancel plans for Spring Break? Is it safe to go to work, the grocery store, the mall.....

And then I realize, we have all been through this before, and that we are for the most part going to be okay, we can prepare for a tsunami that may never hit us, and earthquake that is going to reduce our civilization to ruins, nuclear war, world war three and corona virus, prepare is good, panic is not.
Wash your hands, put the kettle on, make a cup of tea, keep calm and carry on.

Its just my opinion, feel free to disagree, but other than going to work I don't mind staying home with a pot of tea and a really great book for the foreseeable future...
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Monday, March 9, 2020

Happy Birthday Barbie

Today is Barbie's Birthday, I have always loved Barbie and I still do today. This is a photo of me from Christmas morning 1984. I still get the same excitement today in the Barbie section as I did back then on my frequent trips to the toy section.
Today I wanted to share with you what I think is a very cool Barbie that a friend sent to me and I am over the moon with her!
This is Breathe with me Barbie, and she walks you through very simple breathing exercise and with the help of her puppy, you place an emoji on the pup, that helps Barbie choose what breathing exercises to do.
 I am thrilled to have had sometime to play with Barbie and have a cup of Rose and Tulsi tea this evening to wind down. I love that after 61 years Barbie is still going strong, and in a great direction.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and in wishing Barbie a Happy Birthday today.
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Sunday, March 8, 2020

The Illustrated Herbiary by Maia Toll

I started the weekend off with a new book called The Illustrated Herbiary by Maia Toll. This is a beautiful book that appeared in my Amazon.ca suggestions and I ordered it. At the time I had no idea just how beautiful this book is, and it comes with oracle cards in the back as well.

The artwork is stunning and I love how this book is written.
I loved that the three pages I flipped open were ones that I wanted to learn more about, Valerian root is for sleep, and a much loved natural ingredient added to night time teas.
Lavender is my go to for many things and this image of a tiger in a teacup was breath taking.
I am looking forward to reading this book cover to cover and referencing it in my own life.
Maybe this is book you would enjoy adding to your repertoire. I am not an amazon affiliate but you can find the book by clicking here.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a Bewitching Botanical Book review.
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Saturday Tea Party For One...

Saturday morning first thing at the clinic, have had so much ear pain and nose bleeding that I could hardly sleep, they make you wear a mask at the clinic now if you have any cold like symptoms. I was surprised to learn that while it is going to take up to a month to start feeling more like myself after contracting Influenza A, the medicine I have been taking for inflammation and congestion was the reason for the added pain and nose bleeding. I was told to now take Tylenol Cold and Sinus and see if that helps for the next 12 days. I left the clinic and headed to get supplies from the grocery store and was met by an old friend...
My friend Cookie reminded me that things are going to be okay and that I was severely lacking in cookies in my cookie jar....24 may have made it in my cart.
 They say you should never go to the grocery store, sad, sick or hungry...or maybe you should. I got the medicine, and a few other things to make myself a tea party for one, I mean you should take your medicine with food right?  I made some cream cheese and cucumber sandwiches, peanut butter and raspberry jam sandwiches, scones, and treats, though true be told I could only eat my sandwiches and a scone before I took myself back to bed and slept most of the day away.
Soup for dinner and maybe one of Cookie Monsters amazing Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies, before another early night in bed for me.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a tea party for one, really its not any harder than making regular lunch, you just cut off the crusts and use pretty plates, and let the bakery do the baking of the treats....
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Friday, March 6, 2020

Friday, The End To A Work Week Full of Plot Twists.

Friday morning tea in one of my favorite cups and saucers.  A great start to a rather long day. It is now after 8:30 Pm and I have just gotten home, more than 12 hours after I first set off.
I was hoping to have a great story to share from the tea shop or a great find but honestly today I did not have time to shop, and the dust on the stores shelves, did not tell me anything new. It was pretty much just a hurry up and wait kind of a day, which I welcome in a week that was one plot twist after another.

I saw this quote on the anniversary of my dads one year passing, March 3rd and it made me smile. So I did a screen shot and as I was going through my photos for the craft I wanted to share, I thought it so fits the theme of this post.  The truth is, I so can relate to honesty in this statement, and it is the last three words that made me smile.

  I  wanted to share a quick dollar store craft I made for the store window this week after a rather unfortunate accident, the spillage of tea and some expired coffee beans...

The thing about tea is that it can be used for many things, especially if you accidentally spill a fair share of it on the floor when you drop the tea tin.... So instead of just writing off the spillage, I saved it and came up with a quick craft that gives new life to the lost leaves and for good balance, some old coffee beans that we used in the window display.

I went to the dollar store before work and found two jars about the size of cookie jars, they were $4 each. I also found two lovely little artificial succulent plants that came in  a jar of their own. When I got to the store my boss and I filled the jars with the beans and the loose tea, then placed the jar with the succulents in the center. We used some brown cord that was wrapped around the smaller jars on the lip of the larger jars and voila we made a pretty cool window display.  You could very easily use real plants, however for the sake of ease and the fact that this window sits behind display tables and is very difficult to access, artificial made the most sense.

In truth not one of the days this week went the way I thought or hoped and I am thrilled to be home, in bed and writing from my laptop.

Thank you for sticking with me through each post and for the support and love you have shown me this week just by being you.
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Soul Care in the time of Covid-19...

Whatever is good for your soul do that....

The above is was what I wrote on my instagram image this morning and I tried to follow through with that as much as I could today. I am still on the mend from having Influenza A and like many of you, I am watching in horror as the Cov-19 Virus crisis unfolds, I try to not read every story I find on it, but it is like a train wreck and very hard to look away. I myself  was in need of Toilet Paper this week and went to Walmart, which I was shocked to find had six packages left in the entire store and they wanted $18.77 for it, now I don't know about you but I felt a bit of panic, quickly replaced by irritation as I realized that not only were people hoarding TP, but that felt a bit like price gauging to me.
I could not help but walk away, with out TP.
I did find some tonight and not a moment too soon, my regular brand and $5.97 (In the top right photo offered at the crazy price!) At London Drugs, and I made a decision not to go over board and bought what I needed, now I worry TP will be the currency we use going forward, I am not convinced I did the right thing by not hoarding the TP!
So in the interest of soul care and fun...I have a small obsession (though not hoarding) face masks and I really like this Unicorn one but my sister in law tells me it is terrifying, so tonight I tried a plain one....
 I think honestly this one is more terrifying looking but was much nicer feeling...
I am not sure how it is only Thursday, but I am doing what I can to find simple joy and happiness in my day, maybe it is my age but I often think back to the cartoons I would watch and when things got tough the characters would hang a sign that said "Gone Fishing" so I figured I would try that for my soul as well.
In these trying times, remember whatever is good for your soul do that.
Thanks for joining me for a cup of tea and some of myself care coping skills.
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

A Cozy Orphan Tea Cup Find.....

The difference between a flower and a weed is perspective...

Today before work I stopped at one of our local thrift stores and stumbled on one of my favorite finds, an orphaned tea cup! This one is a true treasure to me because it says Happy Birthday on it!
It is a Rosina Bone China tea cup and likely not worth much to anyone but me, I have one Happy Birthday set that matches but they are a rare find these days and I love thinking about the person who was originally given this cup and the sentiment behind it. I paid 3.99 for it way more than I should have but something would not let me leave it behind.
This charming little cup has lovely pink flowers on it and sadly no matching saucer, so the fun begins to find a suitable substitution saucer...
I don't think this will be too hard to match but I do love it when a good find comes together. I once found a cup and had it for two years before find the correct saucer and it made me so happy to reunite them. So I hope before my birthday in April, I will have found something lovely worth placing on my table.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy teacup find. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com