2012 Hits And Misses + Turning Over A New Leaf In 2013

As the final day of 2012 ticks by, it’s an obvious time to reflect.  Since this was my first year of blogging, I took a look back on which topics were “hits” and which were “misses”  and laid out the first posts for the new year… (just to whet your appetite a bit.)

The purpose of this blog, which is an extension of the book, is to inspire, encourage, and inform people about tea and anything surrounding tea time.  Why?  Because tea time is such a civilized activity and a social drink.  It is social and meditative at the same time.  It is a uniquely universal beverage which inspires peace, calm, civility, conviviality, introspection, healthfulness,  and so much more.  Americans were quite a bit behind the rest of the world in having availability to quality tea, but that’s all rapidly changing.  There is an art to preparing tea.   I plan to write much more about the art of the tea leaf this year.  It’s time for tea.  And with Starbucks recent acquisition of the Teavana tea store chain in the U.S….they even agree.

As far as “hits” from my blog this year, readers gravitated towards the, ever popular, cupcake – which was one of the most popular single day posts of the year.  However, overall, the most popular posts all time were:  The Traditional Afternoon Tea With My Daughter...below at the historic Mission Inn, Riverside, California.

Beautiful Food + A Lovely Cup Of Tea – from a Napa Valley iconic restaurant, Domaine Chandon

The Butter Taste Test – very interesting results…all good…each different.

…along with Mom’s Homemade Pastry Creme

And…The Perfect Little Teapot from Tea Time Trading Company

Readers continuously click on those posts.  Not too surprising, I suppose, since Tea With Betty is about tea time…and for Betty, “teatime could be anytime” featuring items from these posts.

Since cupcakes, and almost anything prepared in a cupcake tin, remain popular, below is a little recap of cupcake photos from Tea With Betty.  You can find many enticing versions on Pinterest too.  Whether gorgeous or rustic…all were “hits.”  The key to a GREAT cupcake, whether large or small – beautiful or rustic or plain – is that the “cake” is not dried out.  No matter what recipe you use to make your cake, keep them deliciously moist…do NOT over bake them.  It is soooo disappointing to take a much anticipated bite out of a luscious looking cake to then pucker and wince at a crumbly, dried out, over-baked mouthful.  Take care to keep them moist!!

Below are a few photos from 2012 cupcakes in my life:  The first one is with candied lemon slices from my niece, Sammycakes.

Sammycakes cupcakes

Sammycakes cupcakes

IMG_0117

Lastly, couldn’t resist including my photo of a tea setting from the Laguna Beach Garden Club home tour my sister and I went on last summer… this from a gorgeous courtyard setting in Three Arch Bay area… this photo has been pinned hundreds of times on Pinterest…it is a beautiful, inviting setting.

Bird's nest place setting

Bird’s nest place setting

Here’s a brief preview of  coming 2013 posts:

1) Tea time with my daughter, second in a series…this time including my grandsons…from The Mission Inn, we are going there January 2, I am having a low carb tea, we’ll see what the chefs do with that request.

2) Cooking Class with Chef Katie Averill…topic…chocolate, chocolate, chocolate, will be attending class in late January, look forward to sharing tips from this great pastry chef.

3) Teas that taste like dessert…there are many delicious blends and infusions out there, will share some of my finds…and they are primarily guilt free, no calories, no carbs…

Additionally and  importantly, a quick thank you to my supporters  and followers these past 11 months, in particular, two of my favorite bloggers, Panini Girl and Lorna’s Tea Room Delights.  And lastly, I’ve been honored to receive three blog awards this year.  I am not savvy enough yet to figure out how to post them and appropriately respond, but do plan to take a lesson on how to do so and improve the look of Tea With Betty in early 2013…watch for continuous improvement here… oh and you might want to know how my 12 week challenge to lose weight and manage my blood sugars is going…well, so far, so good.

Week 8 Challenge Update…4 weeks to go…amazingly…down one more pound…that’s a total of 6 with 4 more to go…will I make it?  I think so…I have seriously changed my eating / snacking habits and feel in control.  It was a challenge with those holiday parties and dinners…but I did o.k…knowing I had to report to you helped.

See you on the blogosphere next year!

8 Comments

  1. Kudos on your first year and awards! You have a good start on a very Happy New Year!

    • Thank you Diane…it’s been interesting, am looking forward to seeing what adventures to get into this year to blog about tea.

  2. Happy New Year! I have enjoyed all your blogs — and congrats on winning 3 awards and on the 6 pounds!

    • Glad that you enjoy the posts…am thinking of several adventuresome things we can do in 2013 with the excuse of getting to blog about it…a visit to L.A’s Little Tokyo and a teahouse might be something to calendar. think I might have had a bit of a set back on the pounds lost with New Year’s Eve consuming, but it was fun….back to the program today 🙂

  3. Happy New Year Linda, it was lovely to revisit some of your old posts, I had forgotten just how impressive that Napa Valley food was. Thank you for the mention, I’m looking forward to your coming posts (chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate? Yes please!). Have a lovely time at The Mission Inn tomorrow.

    • Happy New Year to you too Lorna. It has been a real joy for me to get to know you through your wonderful blog and I thank you for your encouragement with mine. It’s meant a lot to me. Am looking forward to tea time tomorrow… my young grand sons will be dressed in their finest and love finger sandwiches, so should be fun.

  4. It has been a great year. Thanks for taking me on this journey with you. Look forward to your future post and being apart of the research they intail.

    • Thank you! Wouldn’t want to do it without you…