Is that a tea internship contest? Yep.

Not sure if it was by divine intervention, but all thanks to Twitter I discovered @TeaCouncil today and discovered that the organization is running an internship contest called: “Sip of Success.”  The contest combines the best of two worlds that I am the most passionate about: public relations and tea!

Contestants are asked to create a 2-minute video showing their creativity and passion for tea, along with their knowledge of its health benefits.

The prize: Once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to prepare for a career in the worldwide tea industry!  The winning video submitted by a college student or recent college grad, will go on a tour through India, Sri Lanka, Kenya and the U.S. to experience a training and internship program with The Tea Council of the USA, Inc.’s partners.  The winner will also get to participate in the U.S. portion of the Dream Job internship at SalonTea, owned by nationally renowned entrepreneur Tracy Stern.

Entries are judged on the following criteria:

  • Health-related message (50%)
  • Creativity (20%)
  • Individuality (20%)
  • Popularity (10%)

Due by 11:59 p.m. on November 19…so that means I better get started!

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My Chinatown Green Tea Experience

I recently took a week-long trip to New York City, on a whim with one of my friends. With the combination of cheap airplane tickets and hotel rates – we thought…why not? Probably one of the best decisions of my life. what did you get when you combine michelle + chinatown + a tea shop + green tea? overwhelmed.

Of course on our list of places to visit was Chinatown. While there’s plenty of meat to get at the market and black market designer handbag sales going on at the corners, I had to go straight for the tea shops. No brainer.

Stepping through those doors gave me the same feeling in my stomach as a child who had one too many cookies – overwhelmed.  What kind of green tea to buy? Not only were there different flavors. There was different packaging – bags, tins, candied…There was bagged, loose-leaf…oh what to do?

Well after running around in circles between the ancient tea room in the back and the shelves in the front of the China Tea Shop, I decided to invest my dollars in a bag of green tea candy (yum!) and canned loose leaf. So yummy!

Top 5 places to enjoy green tea this summer

It’s officially summer in AZ (though the desert temps make it kind of a permanent season here) and I’ve been making some trips to fun places around the Phoenix area, while enjoying green tea. Thought I’d share my “Top 5 List” for favorite places to enjoy green tea this summer 🙂

1. Barnes and Noble Cafe at Tempe Marketplace

If you can get there bright and early on a Saturday morning before the shopping/dining crowd hits this outdoor shopping mall, it’s a perfect place to listen to iTunes, read a book or magazine and sip on the B&N Cafe’s iced green tea and coconut blend without interruption. For about $3 you can sip on what tastes like a Hawaiian vacation.

2. Tea Infusion at Tempe Marketplace

This cute tea bar has more than 96 different kinds of tea (including my favorite Pink Pomegranate Green Tea). Meet up with your friends at this place and enjoy the drinks while playing one of the board games on their shelves. Mancala and Scrabble are a couple of the options that they have ready for your childhood cravings.

3. Dutch Bros. Coffee Drive-Thru

Oh, don’t be thrown off by the coffee title. This place has a better green tea blend than Starbucks could ever wish for. The friendly and attractive baristas seal the deal. Enjoy a drink out on their patio while listening to the dutch tunes and basking in their misters.

4. Tempe Town Lake w/a gallon of Arizona Diet Green Tea from Fresh and Easy

When the sunshine sparkles on the water over Tempe Town Lake, you can’t help but smile and thank God for His Beauty. The people watching is great and there’s normally some sort of event going on at this park. Plus a gallon of Arizona Diet Green Tea from Fresh and Easy runs only about $4!

5. Sushi 101

This place obviously is a hot-spot for its regular and reverse happy hours with students on a budget, but aside from the saki – try their iced or hot organic green tea! It’s bomb.

Tea Stain Removal

Oops! We’ve got a tea spill on our hands…

So yesterday I was trying to enjoy a hot mug of green tea, like always, and well, as you can tell the process wasn’t as simple as I thought it would be. Reaching over to move my mouse and open an Excel report, I flipped over my tea and spilled not only on my keyboard, but also my computer modem and a bunch of wires that probably could’ve exploded into a fire had I not cleaned up the mess right away. After sprinting  to the break room to grab paper towels and fixing my mess, I made myself another mug of green tea.

Yet again, my morning tea experience had to be delayed because this time I reached over to grab my notepad with my to-do list, and I knocked over my green tea. At this point, would even call myself a clutz. Goodness. This time I not only had to clean up the mess I made on my computer. I also had to clean up the mess I had made on my jeans. What I learned from the experience is to place my green tea far away from my elbows, as well as how to remove tea stains. Thought I’d share these tea stain removal tips with you!

  • Dip a sponge in white vinegar and apply to the stain.
  • Wash the garment per care label instructions.
  • Don’t throw the garment into the dryer or the heat will set the stain!

or

  • Soak the garment in a solution of 3 cups of white vinegar to one cup of water.
  • Place in a large glass bowl and soak. 
  • Rub the garment to remove any lingering residue and rinse in cold water.  
  • Rinse and launder as usual.

There you have it – how to remove a tea stain, all thanks to my spill mistake! By the way, I’ve kept my clothing tea-free all day at work so far 🙂

Green Tea vs. Coffee – Green Tea wins

Okay so I realize this is a bit random, but I encountered an experience at my office cubicle that I think is applicable to most working individuals. Have you ever snagged a cup of coffee from the break room, enjoyed it and then licked your lips afterward? It must be something with the coffee in your saliva, but it dries your lips out soooo much! After finishing one cup I had to apply lip balm 5 or 6 times within a half hour to try and get my lips’ moisture level back to normal.

I’ve never had this problem occur when I drink green tea.

Conclusion: Green tea wins, yet again in the Green Tea vs. Coffee battle 🙂

Green Tea Energizes Twitter

For those of you who love tweeting in the atmosphere, here are some Twitter users that I highly recommend following in order to get your daily dose of green tea updates and/or tea related information (other than me of course: @gtea

Top 10 Green Tea Tweeters:

  1. @GreenTeaManiac
  2. greentea_lover
  3. GreenTeaHealth
  4. GreenTeaJapan
  5. obubutea
  6. YogiProducts
  7. teasquaredblog
  8. Snapple
  9. teaguyspeaks
  10. grenx

Enjoy!

Top green tea supplier stops animal testing

For all the animal-rights activists and PETA lovers, you’ll be happy to know that the world’s largest supplier of green tea – Ito En- has decided to stop testing its products on animals.

Located in Tokyo, Ito En is believed to be Japan’s first major consumer products company to stop all animal testing, according to PETA.  The animal-rights activist organization is asking other companies to follow in Ito En’s footsteps.

You may not have know this before, but it is a common practice for most consumer products (i.e. food, cosmetics, toiletries, etc.) to be tested in some way on animals to ensure their safety for human consumption.

Previously, Ito En was using “non-required experiments on animals in order to support health marketing claims that were used to promote its tea product,” PETA said.