Monthly Archives: November 2012

November 29, 2012

A taste of Thailand: Bangkok

To help everyone at Tea “go there,” we make a yearly contribution to each employee for international travel and exploration. Upon their return, our Tea travelers write blog posts to share their adventures with all of us (and the world).

Kelly and Cristy, part of our power house sales team, traveled to Thailand for the first time together. Read more about their adventures here.

First stop: Bangkok.

The song is right. One night in Bangkok WILL make a tough man humble! What a modern and bustling city. I think it must rival NYC as the city that never sleeps. What stuck out to us here was the contrast of how very modern the city was but with so much history and culture sprinkled through it. Looking out over the city from our hotel room were tall hotel buildings surrounded by small bazaars and restaurants…and every few miles you would see the amazing tips of a golden temple reaching up through the craze as if to say “Don’t forget me!”  Riding down the street in our Tuk Tuk we would pass busy merchants, 7 Elevens, and school children in uniform making their way home…..and then right in the middle of it all, a Spirit House cloaked in fresh flowers and a glowing candle no doubt recently lit by a very thankful Thai. Even walking through the markets crammed with vendors selling all types of food and wears you would be passed by monks in their vibrant orange robes making their way on some errand. Such an amazing contrast and a constant reminder of where the Thai people came from and what they hold sacred.

We were able to get in a visit to one our favorite manufacturers while in Thailand (think girls knit dresses and boys French Terry bottoms!). Mahin and Samsuk were kind enough to take us to dinner on our first night in Bangkok to ‘debrief’ us and make suggestions on things we shouldn’t miss while in Thailand. Their best suggestion, in our opinion, was the Weekend Market. Wow! This was a shopper’s paradise. This HUGE shopping market was filled with stalls of vendors selling anything from antiques to traditional Thai spices. This market had it all! My favorite was the contrast between vendors…one stall was selling ornate textiles made by hand and loom in the same fashion Thai’s have been making textiles for centuries and next to him was a very hip young woman selling these amazing clutches that she had made herself. Beautiful handmade leather clutches and wallets that had then been spray painted with designs or embellished with studs and embroidery. I’m bummed I didn’t buy one for myself. Kelly was excited about the stations for quick foot and back massages as we spent quite some time wandering this vast marketplace!

The food was amazing everywhere we went. I must admit that both Kelly and I brought granola bars from home on this trip just in case there wasn’t much for us to eat…neither of us eats very spicy foods
(although Kelly is MUCH more adventurous than I!). I’m very glad to report that any spicy-phobic’s out there need not worry. You are able to order everything ‘mild’. We ate very well and both brought most of our granola bars back home. I gained 5 lbs eating as much ‘Drunken Noodles’ as I could get my hands on….not a pretty dish but Holy-Heck was it flavorful!


November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today I am thankfulWe wish everyone a joyous and laughter-filled Thanksgiving.  Today is the day to tell your loved ones just how much they mean to you.  Better yet show them.  Share a hug and a smile with everyone you see today.  We are thankful for the chance to share our world with you.  Thank you for welcoming us into your lives.  What you are thankful for today and everyday? Share with us on Facebook.

November 19, 2012

Tea and the Global Fund for Children in action

Kids in Tea clothes in China

GFC distributing Tea clothes in Feng County.

Over the past few years, Tea has worked hand in hand with the Global Fund for Children (GFC) to donate money and resources to grassroots organizations that transform the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children.  This past summer Tea sent clothes to GFC to donate in China’s Feng County.  Many children in this area of rural China are considered “invisible” because they are neglected by the government and unaccounted for.  It takes dedicated grassroots organizations to find and help these forgotten kids.

Boy in donated Tea clothes.

One reason we keep giving. Do your part today.

You too can help GFC reach more needy children.  Every holiday season, Tea and GFC collaborate and create the Little Citizens Holiday Pajamas.    All proceeds from the purchase of these pajamas go towards the Global Fund for Children, so they can help children around the world learn, grow, and thrive.

Tea Collection's Little Citizen Pajamas

Dress your little citizen up for the holidays!

 

November 16, 2012

Activity Post: Build a Beard

Help our friendly Viking friend, Halldor, grow his beard so he can stay warm during the cold winter months.  Maybe even hide a treasure or two inside!

Create your own bearded Viking

Download your copy of Build a Beard here.

Once you’re done, submit your creation to blog@teacollection.com for your chance to win a $100 Tea gift certificate! Every month, Tea staff will pick one artistic little citizen to win!  Honorable mentions will also be uploaded into their own featured blog post. Let your creative juices flow and show us your inner artist!

Get your Viking beard shirt today!

 

Viking Tee

Since you little guy can't grow a beard yet, he can wear one.

 

November 13, 2012

London, Paris, Prague

To help everyone at Tea “go there,” we make a yearly contribution to each employee for international travel and exploration. Upon their return, our Tea travelers write blog posts to share their adventures with all of us (and the world).

Priscilla,  a customer account manager and blogger, recently returned from a whirlwind trip to London, Paris, and Prague.

Tips from a first time European traveler:

1)      Be able to carry your luggage without assistance
2)      Bring the best walking shoes you have
3)      Eat everything over there!  Stuff your face because you will definitely walk off all those calories.

After you’ve got those down, here are the highlights of my trip and things that I think you should see and do.

London: If you’re in London, you must have tea at Fortnum& Mason.  This was a definite highlight of my trip.  Their duo of scones served with Somerset clotted cream and strawberry preserve is mouth-wateringly delicious.  My picture does not do it justice.  Fortnum&Mason has been around since the 1700s and their carousel theme runs throughout the entire store.  After a duo of scones and a Jubilee blend pot of tea, stroll over to Buckingham Palace for the changing of the guards.  Rumor has it that the guards do not leave their post until they are relieved from their duties.

Duo of Scones at Fortnum & Mason

Changing of the guards

Paris: If you find yourself in Paris, purchase a Paris Museum Pass and have a picnic under the Eiffel Tower at night.  We grabbed quiche and sandwiches from Rue Cler, a bustling street lined with markets and cafes that locals frequent which is just a stone’s throw away from the Eiffel Tower.  We lugged our delicious treats and situated ourselves with a picturesque view of the tower as the sun set.  The Eiffel Tower lights up every hour on the hour once it gets dark.  Sit back and watch it twinkle and shine in the Parisian sky.  The best part about this is that there are no lines, tickets, or security guards.

Twinkling Eiffel Tower

Prague: If you are in Prague in the fall, bring a warm jacket and hike Petrin Hill.  Since I am a born and bred San Franciscan, I haven’t really experienced different seasons and the leaves changing.  On two separate occasions, we hiked up Petrin Hill once to visit Strahov Monastery/ Brewery and the second time to visit the Hunger Wall.  This was a tiring ascent to the top but the views here were breathtaking.  I loved the juxtaposition of amber colored leaves to the colorful buildings that decorate Prague’s skyline.  Make sure to enjoy their dezerty there (no really, that’s how they spell it).

View from Petrin Hill.

November 7, 2012

Activity Page: Seppo, the Snow Monster

 

Faceless snowy mosnterWhat face does Seppo have today?  Draw new facial expressions for Seppo.  Maybe somebody ate all his Halloween candy or maybe he found a secret stash of bananas buried in the snow.

Download your copy of Seppo, the SnowyMonster.

Once you’re done, submit your creation to blog@teacollection.com for your chance to win a $100 Tea gift certificate! Every month, Tea staff will pick one artistic little citizen to win!  Honorable mentions will also be uploaded into their own featured blog post. Let your creative juices flow and show us your inner artist!

Bundle your little guy up in Seppo today before he becomes extinct!

Seppo Tshirt

Seppo the Snow Monster Outfit

November 4, 2012

October Activity Book Contest Winner!

Fall is here and so are Tea’s little artists! The cold winds must have blown in some creativity as we saw some of the most inspiring creations yet.

For the first time in Activity Book Contest history, we’re announcing two winners: siblings Nora & Miles! We adored their squirrel puppets- how creative & fun!

Activity Book Winners

In addition, we’d liked to make note of our Honorable Mention, William. We loved William’s skating monster- unique colors and expert-level artistry here! Also, you’re rocking that Caribou Plaid Hoodie!

Thank you everyone for entering and be sure to submit a new picture for October’s contest!

Browse all the entries on our Flickr page.

Interested in entering the contest for next month? Take a picture of your child’s completed activity book picture and send it to us at blog@teacollection.com with “Activity Book Entry” in the subject line. We pick one winner each month to receive a $100 Tea gift certificate. We’ll also post all honorable mentions on our blog page and all submissions will be posted on our Flickr page.

Download all of our activity book pages by visiting our activity printouts blog tag.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 2, 2012

Inspiring Mom Awards: Mompreneur

 

Inspiring Mom Awards- vote today

Polls for the Inspiring Mom Awards are open!  Take a look at our candidates and cast your ballot for the mother you think best embodies the globetrotting, mompreneur, and making a difference qualities.  Today, you can meet two of our mompreneur model citizens- Ali Wing and Liz Gumbinner.

Ali Wing of GiggleAli Wing is the guru behind Giggle- the one stop shop for mothers and fathers to be.  Need tips on potty training?   Want educational toys?  Ali and her team have got you covered.  In her spare time (if she has any), she wrote the Giggle Guide to Baby Gear and a column in The Bump.  Check out Ali’s empire here: http://www.giggle.com/

Read Ali’s answers below:

1. How do you maintain a healthy work and home life balance?
I’m not sure I do!  But the key for me is what I call the “bookends.”  My morning routine is work out, shower & then have breakfast with and walk my son to school. I also end each day w/  family dinner at 7 pm and then reading time with my son.  Starting and stopping each day as “mom” gives me – and my son – our balance.

2. What’s your favorite aspect about being a mom?
I