Hello Tea People: Lu Ann Pannunzio

Hello, tea lovers! We wanted to give you a behind the scenes of an interview with one of our "Hello Tea People." We are lucky to have here Lu Ann Pannunzio give us a peak at her new book Tea-spiration and her story behind it all.

Lu Ann Pannunzio is a tea enthusiast and writer based in Ontario, Canada. She is the blogger behind the tea blog, The Cup of Life, where she shares her steeps, tea infused recipes and crafts to show the world just how versatile and inspirational the beverage of tea truly is. Her blog is well recognized and has been nominated for the World Tea Awards’ Best Tea Blog three years in a row. Lu Ann’s written pieces have also been published in various publications including Fresh Cup Magazine and Health + Wellbeing Magazine. Steep yourself a cup and check out her blog at www.theteacupoflife.com

From where did you get an idea to write your book Tea-spiration?
The idea and term tea-spiration came from those popular inspirational quotes you find on some tea tags. I wanted to create a book that would be perfect for tea lovers to always have by their side during their tea time. So, I decided to write about tea in a way that would show people that there was actually more inspiration coming from what was inside your cup, opposed to just what was on the tag of the tag. Right at the start of the book, I define what the word "tea-spiration" means to set the tone for the rest of what readers will read.

Tea-spiration book with a cup of tea

What is it about? 
Tea-spiration is not a textbook style read. You won't learn about how to properly make a cup of tea. Similar to life, tea is about the little things. So instead, Tea-spiration focuses on all of the moments (big or small) that we can experience with tea. It does so by highlighting great tea moments throughout. Such as that moment when you open a freshly sealed package of tea and take in that initial aroma, or even the moment when your tea leaves begin to unfurl. Perhaps looking deeper into how the tea leaves got inside your cup in the first place was one of my favourite parts to write about. It is a book for all tea lovers - enthusiasts or casual - to help them slow down and enjoy everything there is in their cup of tea.

How did you come to like tea in the very beginning?
I think it's safe to say I have been a self-proclaimed "tea-aholic" since I was 7 years old. I had my first sip around then and it was a strawberry flavoured black tea that came in a cute wooden box. I really wish I remember more about it so I could find the brand again for memories. My mom and older sister always had tea together and it was an exciting time for me when I was finally allowed to join their tea time with actual tea for me! Mind you I was 7 so it was essentially liquid sugar, haha but I thought it was so delicious and more so, I thought tea time was the perfect moment to slow down and connect more with my mom and sister. It truly was love at first sip for me.

What inspires you to spread your love for tea? 
When you love something and are extremely passionate about it, I think spreading it comes organically. I want people to find many different ways they can enjoy the beautiful beverage and I do that with my tea blog, The Cup of Life, whether it is through tea infused recipes, DIY, etc. My favourite thing about spreading my tea love is finding other tea drinkers out there on the way. It is honestly one of the greatest things about blogging! The tea community is a wonderful thing.

What are your plans for future? If you can share them :) 
My plans are definitely to keep writing! For my tea blog, for other various publications and perhaps a tea fiction. I may already have a plot steeping for that ;) Ultimately, I just hope to continue sharing my tea passion with others, connect with more tea lovers around the world and continue to learn from the Leaf.

I am not going to ask, what is your favorite type of tea. But when is your favorite time to have tea? 
Anytime really! But, if I had to pick I would probably say morning because my one routine is to wake up and make a mug of tea (and sometimes later a bowl of matcha before lunch). I look at it as the perfect way to start a great day.

Is there any quote, inspiration or recommendation you want to give to all the tea lovers? 
This is one of my absolutely favourite tea quotes:

"If you ask Zen people they will say tea is not something that you pour with unawareness and drink like any other drink. It is not a drink, it is meditation; it is prayer. So they listen to the kettle creating a melody, and in that listening they become more silent, more alert." - Osho

If you need more inspirational quotes, Tea-spiration actually concludes with 24 quotes for 24 hours of inspiration. www.theteacupoflife.com/book

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