We’ve been consuming a lot of hot tea around our home lately. With a teakettle always hot on the wood stove, it’s so easy to make up a quick cup or even a whole pot of tea whenever the mood strikes. In our home during the winter, that mood strikes at least a couple times a day!

I don’t think there’s anything cozier on a cold day than a warm cup in my hand. I feel like I can accomplish any boring chore as long as I can have some tea nearby while I’m working. I do love the convenience of tea bags, but lately I’ve been leaning more towards herbal teas that I mix myself. I was shocked to learn how much cheaper herbs are when purchased in bulk either from a health food store (like Wild Oats or Vitamin Cottage) or online (my favorite is The Bulk Herb Store).

Just before our baby was born this year, I stocked up on all the herbs for tea that are our family’s favorites. We enjoy matching our tea mix to whatever is going on around us, so each pot is slightly different. Around bedtime, I’ll mix up lavender, chamomile and maybe some catnip to calm everyone for bed, then throw in either peppermint or cloves for flavor (plus it’s good for the tummy after dinner). In the mornings, I’ll make up a pot with lemon peel and cinnamon for a good start to the day (the lemon gives extra vitamin C and the cinnamon helps to regulate blood sugar) along with oatstraw and red raspberry leaf for the vitamins they provide.

I know how comforting tea can be for my kids when they’re sick, especially wild cherry bark to sooth a sore throat or licorice tea to calm a cough. If upset tummies appear, ginger or peppermint tea are one of the first things to help out.