I’ve always been – and always will be – a coffee addict. There is something about the smell of coffee that instantly makes me feel more alert, energized and happy. But over the last few years, coffee and I don’t always agree. Well, we agree that I love it, coffee just doesn’t always love me. Kind of like that boy who really liked you when you started dating, then acts like he likes you one day, then not the next. Or one of the girls you were friends with in junior high school that hangs out with you until a cute boy comes along. Coffee sometimes will sound and smell so wonderful, then burn my stomach out the next minute or lead me to a migraine. My dependable friend isn’t so dependable.
A few years ago when we started the Farm, I began to experiment with different blends of herbal teas. Yup, no caffeine, but I had no idea all of the health benefits that herbs have in them. The more I read, blended and sampled, the more intrigued I became with my new found love – who doesn’t burn my stomach or make my head pound.
We’ve all heard of chamomile tea and that it’s great for relaxing. But did you know that while it’s great for insomnia, it is also very helpful with digestion after a meal? And it’s one of the best teas for coughs and bronchitis or a fever. It can help relax your bronchial tubes. It’s been said it is particularly beneficial to women in helping them lead longer lives and has proven benefits for diabetes.
One of my very favorites is Lemon Balm tea. I add a little mint and lavender to the blend. Lemon Balm is known for lifting your spirits, helps concentration and is a great detoxifier. It’s also safe for kids and it’s said it can help prevent nightmares when they drink it before bed. I love this one iced but it’s also my go-to hot tea in the winter. And who doesn’t love lavender? Not only does it smell good, it is an instant relaxer and in turn make everything just feel better.
We grow five different types of mint here, and I love to blend up different concoctions. My favorite one is Pineapple Mint, Sweet Mint and Oranges. It’s great iced or hot and drinking mint tea is said to relieve the symptoms of abdominal gas and bloating, relieve muscle spasms and it’s also good for nausea. Mint gives an energy boost but also has a calming effect. Opposites I know but that’s one of the cool things about mint. I know some people aren’t crazy about mint but there are so many different flavors – the pineapple is a little tart and apple mint really does have an apple flavor – that the combinations I’m trying are endless.
I’m now playing around with some ginger, rosemary and thyme teas. I’ll let you know how they turn out. I know they’ll smell amazing and the health benefits with those herbs are awesome.
So while coffee will always be my first love, herb teas have grown to be my new found friends that don’t make me sick. Pee a lot, yes, nauseated, no. And sitting down with a good book, a cup a tea with my special Fangboner Farms glass bead on the string and one of the many pets in our home sitting with me – well it just don’t get any better than that! (well unless I add a chocolate chip cookie with it. . .)