Freelance contribution by: Mercedes Wadkins

You know when you smell a certain scent that brings up a memory?  

Maybe it’s cotton candy to remind you of the fair or a perfume that grandma wore and brings back all those wonderful sensations that went along with it!  Tea is exactly the same…all those beautiful smells and colors and all the memories that attach themselves with it.

With everything going on in the world and many people being home more, now is the perfect time to start creating memories.  As a parent, I constantly look for things to do with my children; and since my business is kids’ tea, teatime comes naturally to us!  But for most parents, giving tea to a kid is unheard of – not because it’s unhealthy, it’s just a lack of knowledge. 

When my daughter wanted to stop pretending and partake in real tea, my first thought was that I was not going to give caffeine to my kid.  But I wasn’t educated on the subject and didn’t know there is an infinite amount of beautiful tea that smells like heaven.  Better yet, there were herbal teas that actually had health benefits and fruit tisanes that — with just a bit of honey — are better than any store-bought juice I’ve ever tasted.

When I decided to start this journey, I was completely surprised by how little there was for kids when it came to tea.  Why would you have all of these “teatimes” and all the fancy clothes and tea sets to go with it if you were just going to serve lemonade?  Then I started to research kids’ teas — which was even more astonishing — and then realized why parents were serving up lemonade and punch:  There was little to none when it came to kids, maybe a couple teas for sickness but that was it…nothing fun or exciting!  That’s when my mind started going in a different direction.

I’ve had the privilege of meeting so many wonderful tea people on this journey who have taken me under their wing who want the same thing I do.  The only problem is they had tons of knowledge way before I decided to get into this and their kids and grandkids were already enjoying tea.  It was not weird to them at all, and I tried to explain that a lot of parents do not know about this! When I whip out tea at a park for my child, I get lots of raised eyebrows and then I proudly explain how wonderful it is and it’s so much better than juice and how 1 cup of juice has six teaspoons of sugar in it!  

Yes, I’ve turned into that mom.

With all of this in mind, now is the time to introduce and create those wonderful memories.  So that when we get out of this, our kids can say, “that was the time my parents introduced me to tea.”  They will still remember the smell of lavender or the taste of hibiscus, and how everything seemed right with the world.  In that instance, it was just me and my parent having a moment and — in that instance — it became a tradition.  

And for future generations, those amazing smells of tea will bring with them all the wonderful memories it created through time.

Mercedes Wadkins is the owner and founder of Bellasia Tea. The origin of the company was inspired by her daughter Isabella who wondered why there were no adopted princesses in fairytales. Because of a deep desire and motivation to please her daughter she co-authored a children’s book with her mother, Sara Coats, that, along with her daughter’s love of tea parties, resulted into what is known today as “Bellasia Tea”.

Mercedes is a motivated entrepreneur, speaker and passionate innovator who wants to introduce teas and tisanes to the next generation of tea drinkers. She strongly believes that original and unique ideas can have an attraction for new audiences which will bring teas into a new light and allow them to be looked at from a new perspective. 

Image “Amy’s Tearoom” provided by Babette Donaldson and used with permission
Image “Herbal Tea With Honey” is a royalty-free stock photo by Marina Shanti and is being used unaltered (source)