Sunday, October 21, 2007

2007 Blogging Scholarship

As I was wandering across Bloglandia the other day, I came across a post here directing me to the 2007 Blogging Scholarship award from College . What a neat idea! There are 20 finalists in this process and you are encouraged to check out each page before you vote. I did go to each blog to see what they offered.
A very eclectic mix I must say! It was a wonderful diversion last night from the horrifying tragedy that was Game 6 of the ALCS (Yes, I am aware that I am blessed not to have a real frame of reference to what "horrifying tragedy" truly means...) I have added several of these to my already burgeoning GoogleReader so that I do not miss future posts. There is something for everyone in this lot: Political, Military, Mom/Cancer Fighter, Science, Sports, Religion, Personal Finance, Computers. The main requirement to qualify for the award is that you are a full-time post secondary student who blogs. The wining candidate will be selected based on voting by the public. (That's us!) I really do recommend checking them out!
It was difficult choosing a favorite - but I am a sucker for the Science Geek every time... We've got to stick together!

Saturday, October 20, 2007


Helicopters are all over Cleveland skies this week as the American League Championship Series between the Indians and the Boston Red Sox plays here. Glad they're up there doing something pleasant for a change. The sound pulls my eyes skyward. At least I don't have to petition the heavens on behalf of some poor soul being life flighted to a trauma center. Wonder what it's like to live in some areas of Los Angeles where I understand police helicopters are overhead constantly searching for folks and the news helicopters are there in case they find them. Constant whump-whump-whump of the blades must be irritating. Or maybe you only notice when they stop? I understand we have more helicopters in Iraq now than in any other "conflict" we've fought in. I understand that Al 'Qaeda in Iraq has a plan to target them all special like. Couldn't find the link to the recent NPR segment that spoke on that... Say a prayer for all the folks over there - but give a shout out to those in helicopters. What's up with "Helicopter Moms" in the news? Have you heard of these parents? I understand volunteering at your baby's preschool, baking cupcakes for the fourth grade winter festival party, and not missing the homecoming game... But I don't get the mom who plans to send out resumes and make phone calls to potential employers for her daughter once she graduates from College? Yeah right - "Let's do lunch - my mom will call you mom." That's a play date folks - not a career. Did you know that I have one of those totally cool hats with the propeller on top? Nerds rock.... I want to wear it again some day soon. Don't you love playing with the helicopter wings that come down from the maple trees? How many hours did you spend as a kid watching them fall and then throwing them in the air to watch them fall again? I should do that soon. Kind of like smelling the crayons. Have you done that lately? Takes you right back to getting new crayons for grade school in the fall. Fall is great - did I mention the Indian's are playing in the American League Championships Series? GO TRIBE!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

A Visit to the Monastery

Since I began attending meetings and events with my Chi Omega Sorority Sisters of the Cleveland West I have visited some amazing places in my new home town. Last night was no exception! We attended a tea tasting at The Monastery in Ohio City. They refer to themselves as a restaurant and tea sanctuary.
This unique place is run by a man who must be more knowledgeable about tea than any other person I will ever possibly meet. He regaled us with stories about different teas: white tea, green tea, oolong tea, black tea, pu-erhs..... Did you know that there are teas aged for 30 years? Did you know that some of the best teas are picked by monkeys from the highest cliff elevations which humans just can't reach? Did you know that some teas are considered competition grade? Did you know that milk and sugar are not just a preference of some, but actually required to bring out the full flavor and aroma of some teas? (And do not ever under any circumstances place lemon in anything but iced tea! It will destroy the flavor profile!) Did you know that each tea must be prepared with very specific temperature and infusion time to bring out it's dimension properly? So much to learn!
Luckily, there was also so much to enjoy!
We had a three course meal accompanied by five tea courses...
First Apricot Passion Green Tea
First course: Old English fresh scones and date nut bread baked earlier in the day, served with cream cheese, lemon curd (totally scrumptious!), strawberry cream, and honey and lavender cream.
The next tea was Song Yang White Tea.
Our main food course was Grilled Chicken Salad with green tea marinade served with Wuyi Oolong tea.
Bangladesh Siloah Black Tea
And finally.... dessert! Dark Chocolate Truffle with Rum, Chocolate Strawberry Truffle, Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffle. I cannot begin to tell you how wonderful these were! and a finish with Iron Silk Pu-erh tea.
Over all a delightful evening. And a bit overwhelming! I learned so many different things and was exposed to so many teas that I fear I cannot even discuss them intelligently! For one thing I am aware that my vocabulary doesn't even include sufficient words to articulate the sensory attributes of tea!
If you are ever in this neck of the woods... you must stop in here and experience their "culinary concoctions for the senses."
They also sell loose tea and all the paraphernalia to prepare it properly. I will be back there soon to make some selections!
(Excuse the photos here... I was not trying some fancy exposure settings or filters... Miss "I can't believe I'm lucky enough to go to a tea tasting, how totally cool!" was not awake enough in the morning to remember to bring the camera with her to work! Cell phone to the rescue!)