LOST IN TRANSLATION

What shall we talk about, in this post? How about… Why I was gone for so long? Nope, I am kidding. I have already bored you enough.

Let’s maybe talk about tea?

I am drinking some, as we speak, not rose tea (as could have been implied in the illustration, here) but mint (Moroccan mint, if you please) – and I quite like it. It’s a refreshing change from the several cups of black coffee I am otherwise used to consuming on a daily basis. That hasn’t stopped; I just have started drinking tea on the side. I like drinking it on a late night after having had an early dinner – alongside reading a book, watching a movie on my computer or something. I am saying the most obvious things one would do while drinking a beverage they particularly like, none of this is unique and yet I continue to ramble on, relentlessly.

So… What shall we talk about? It is hard being asked questions, isn’t it? I am not sure I like it very much. Especially when it is about myself, because I don’t have answers. Even so, I know that asking yourself questions is essential, sometimes. Questions that cause you take stock of everything… What you’re doing, where you’re headed, where you are – right now, how close or far are you from what you seek to do or be, etc.? I still have not figured out much of it. It sounds like a shame to admit, and I suspect that I never fully will know everything there is to know, and do and be.

I also think it’ll only come to me in bits and pieces, but I do not need to collect them to build the picture. It isn’t much like a puzzle, though it seems like one – now. What I believe is that… These contemplative moments help you come upon discoveries – they are observations you make about your life. What you have done and are going to do, who you were – then and who you are – now; my mind is in a state of upheaval, good that it might be – however, hard to explain.

‘Lost in translation’ if I may. A romantic way of putting it would be (oh, this is all me): Drink tea, and uncover your mysteries. Think about your life, your moments, your now… See with your inner eye. There is much to uphold and keep, to find and seek. Growth and decay, growth and decay – it’s the only way of the world; an infinite, repetitive loop that keeps you in check.

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Artwork by Roanna Fernandes

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O Christmas Tea { GIVEAWAY }

211 O Christmas Tea { GIVEAWAY }

Giveaway#4 is LIVE! Remember I had said that I wanted to host one more giveaway before the year ended… Well, it didn’t honestly seem likely or possible. Abandoned hope of sorts, and then a cheerful connoisseur of trunks of tea in the form of Snigdha Manchanda came a-knockin’! Christmas miracle, y’all. Okay, chitter-chatter aside – I am very excited to be giving away this box of tea. Part of a Limited Edition range by Tea Trunk; Mulled Spiced Tea combines the classic flavours of Christmas (That would be cinnamon, star anise and clove, accented by hearty apple, orange and cherry notes… Teas really are a lot like fragrances!), and sports a package coat designed by none other than (one of my favourite illustrators of all time… ) ALICIA SOUZA! Wowza.

Reminiscent of a rich, indulgent plum cake, I could not think of a better giveaway for this time of the year. This tea is inspired by mulled wine, and is made with whole leaf black Assam tea. Snigdha suggests drinking it as is, or adding in a splash of dark rum (Don’t mind if I do!)… Would it not be lovely sipping it as you sit by an open window at home on Christmas day, and while some of your folks are sleeping, you are happily reading a copy of Little Women (Okay, I am too excited!)… And now, the steps.

What’s in the Box?

1. Christmas tea! The BOX of Mulled Spiced Tea is what you are going to win, oh sweet reader. I believe it would be perfect for all of you tea drinkers out there, more so if you love Christmas just as much as I do. 

2. Favourite feature? Snigdha was gracious enough to sponsor this box of tea for the giveaway; and, also, the illustrations created by Alicia are reason enough for me. (They are so adohreebal!)

Rules?

The rules are simple! (This giveaway is for Indian residents, only.)

1. Comment here on what excites you about/why you would like to win this delightful tin of tea.
2. Follow Tea Trunk on both Facebook & Instagram; this is not optional either. :-)

(Brownie points will be awarded to you if you are to ‘Like’ my page on Facebook, and/or follow me on Instagram.)

What happens after?

I’ll choose ONE winner in exactly four days, from now – save the date – December 14 is when this contest comes to a close! As soon as I announce the winner – which will either be on my Facebook or Instagram page (and through an e-mail, perhaps) – please write back to me with your postal address and phone number right away. (Will share the contact details with Snigdha who will directly post the tin of tea across to you, then.)

The “Fourth Year of Festivities” remains yours for the taking! Giveaway-gift-makin’.

{ Tea Trunk is a tea label founded by Snigdha Manchanda, a certified Tea Sommelier; she specialises in creating hand-blended teas. She can perhaps create a blend for you if you request for one, I would want a birthday tea complete with colourful sprinkles, if ever… Would that not be exciting? The packaging is so adorable, that the tins can be used as memento boxes for use, after consumption of the tea. I still have mine from last year! }

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Artwork by Roanna Fernandes, illustrations by Alicia Souza and picture by Mitwa A. V

La Poste { Little One’s Doodles }

123 La Poste { Little One's Doodles }

You know how much fun it is to enter a giveaway contest, and more importantly, how nice it is when you actually WIN! I’ve always been one of those unlucky children when it came to winning at a game of Bingo or Housie (hey, remember how they used to call out the numbers, you know, one fat lady is supposed to be the number eight, and all that? *giggle*), or anything really. Anyway, this February, Little One’s Doodles ran a simple contest on their page, I participated and lucked out only after the actual WINNER didn’t claim her prize. I’m sorry that the concerned person didn’t respond but I can’t say that I’m not happy for me! :-)

I don’t remember exactly when I first heard about Little One’s Doodles but in the last year, I saw the label’s wares on so many platforms online and I grew fond of the stationery and home accessories. The label was brought to life by Maheswari Janarthanan, an illustrator who lives in Chennai, and I’ve written a couple of stories featuring her pretty products on STRUT120 in the past. Last December, I even purchased the cutest set of Christmas gift tags aptly titled Ho! Ho! Ho! (see picture) from her. Fourteen tags come inside one packet, and I just paid a measly sum of Rs. 239 for them (the tags are very darling, you must buy them this year before Christmas).  

About Maheswari’s doodles generally, they’re certainly more than just doodles, as you can see in the pictures. I think she creates some of the most beautiful illustrations, in fact, her artwork inspires my set of skills when it comes to illustrating (the Lady in the Water piece of work is my favourite of hers!). 

Finally, here are the details of the lovely loot Maheswari sent me! The package came to me around the time of my birthday, and I thought of it as one of my little gifts though it seems silly now. There were so many nice things that she posted across: the Dreamer tea towel, a sea green elephant print cotton coaster, a cotton-lined storage basket (yes, that would be the orange elephant print contraption in the picture), a set of four Love postcards, pocket calendars and an extra set of coasters (the Little Women ones). It certainly was a very generous giveaway, and I liked everything she sent! It was very sweet of her. If you like her stuff, write to her at maheswarijanarthanan@gmail.com, to order one of her wares or in case, you want to find more about her work

P.S. I’m extremely happy with the set of pictures I took for this post! For the backdrop, I used a white canvas board, and Tana, if you’re reading, you helped because I thought of one of your most recent posts as I did so.

{ All the illustrations seen on the products and stationery are Maheswari Janarthanan’s original works. Please do not steal them, use them anywhere, or promote them as your own. }

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Artwork and pictures by Roanna Fernandes 

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