Thursday, May 19, 2011

Tea progress

Fiona's tea business is taking shape. Some organic ingredients have been purchased. These have been combined with wildcrafted ingredients like rosehips, peppermint and wild ginger. The wild ginger in particular has entailed several trips along trails for collecting but we now have heaps of the stuff.

Two herbal blends are shown. On the left is Ruby Red, a combination of hibiscus, goji berries, dried apples and rosehips. On the right is the Kootenay Wildcraft tea, a blend of wild ginger, rosehips, peppermint and lemon peel.

This morning the teabags arrived!  We'd ordered 500 heat-sealable teabags. She will sell some tea loose-leaf, but most of it will go into teabags. Two grams of tea goes inside each bag, and then a few seconds with the iron along the open edge seals it up for good. She enjoyed making up a few today.

Next she's going to have to figure out packaging. She could just put 10 teabags in a ziploc bag, but somehow that seems a little conventional and dreary. She's had thoughts about labels and origami boxes.

In the meantime, it's fun to test out the teas, and to serve them up to guests for feedback. The Ruby Red is really lovely to behold in a glass cup.

And she's carefully tending all sorts of other herbs in flats and in the garden: lemon bergamot, peppermint, marigold, chamomile and lemon balm are growing, and lavender and anise hyssop starters are on their way to us by mail.

4 comments:

  1. Your children will never cease to amaze me! I can't imagine my guy sticking with any productive project for more than a few minutes, let alone the discipline to raise seedlings to dry, mix and match to make teas, and to market/sell the goods. I'm sure you've written about stick-to-itiveness before (I've been reading off & on for at least 3 years now), but I would love to hear more about how (or if) you encourage that amazing internal drive, focus and discipline your children seem to have.

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  2. There are a few factors that make this work as a long-term project for Fiona. First... she's keen on almost everything. She's just like that temperamentally. If I suggest something, particularly if it means she and I work alongside each other, she's all for it. All I have to do is suggest "hey, feel like getting that garden bed ready?" and she'll be into it. She's a super easy-going kid. Second.... each of the steps (the researching, the ordering of seeds and plants, the planting of a garden, the hiking to look for wild ginger, the washing and chopping and dehydrating, the blending and steeping and taste-testing, the ironing closed of teabags), they're all different from each other and they're all kind of fun. So it's not like one long haul of the same kind of work week after week. Thirdly ... there's a fair bit of parental facilitation here. I'm happy to do some of the in between work because (a) I kind of enjoy the whole idea too and (b) I figure if I help her connect the dots in large long-term projects she's going to get the experience of seeing it take shape and that will help her "stick-tuitivness" as she grows and matures.

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  3. I do hope she will be taking international orders. :)

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  4. Anonymous4:09 am

    Wow both the tea and the sweets are so pretty to look at.

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