Breakfast at SilhouettEtiquette

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It doesn’t take long for London’s elaborate tea time tablescapes to capture a girl’s royal imagination and I was no exception…so much so that I + my 9 month old daughter are hosting our first English breakfast tomorrow morning! It’s doubling as a double playdate for her so we’ll attend to our respective guests! When I’m hosting, I love lining things up and rehearsing the tablescape look the night before… particularly if it’s a breakfast!!! ⏰ This gives me time to tweak and create the fantasy I want my guests to escape to for those few hours where tea, harmony in colors and gossip (don’t worry we’re not talking about you! 😜) are all that matters! Now I’m not sure what her prep plans are, she seems much more relaxed about it all and has gone to bed. She’ll probably have a better glow than me… Perhaps that’s her strategy!😏 Smart baby! Meanwhile my 3 year old knows nothing about it as she’s supposed to be at school at that time but I’m preparing myself for a lot of questions tomorrow morning when she sees my tablescape!

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Routine Sweet Routine

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Coming back to the routine can be tough after an exciting and eventful vacation but I’ve learned through the years to appreciate returning to the order and predictability of my routine and particularly now that I have two kids, the routine’s structure makes it easier to manage them (as they inevitably get spoiled and lose good habits due to gifts and treats here and there by friends and relatives… one of my main concern was their eating and sleeping schedule which was, despite my best efforts, a bit chaotic during the vacation as I could not control relatives insisting to spend more time with them or giving them this or that treat!) The transition back though is inevitably though as you have to deal with the unpacking, cleaning and the very early morning run to the grocery store to get your daughter breakfast before her first day of school and then convincing her that she has to now go back to school! Ultimately however there’s a time when you feel that the wheels are in motion again, and precisely then you should look for a calm moment and take a small celebratory / reflective tea break! In any event I think that small daily rituals like a tea break make a hectic routine much more bearable so make sure to carve out some time for yourself on any day!

Coffee, Teas and Tisanes

Green tea

Green tea

You’re pregnant, trying to get pregnant or you’re breastfeeding and wondering if it’s still safe to rise and shine with your usual morning coffee, or if you can still delight in your afternoon tea or savor your comforting bedtime herbal tea?

Here are some facts:

  • Coffee and non-herbal tea during childbearing (conception, pregnancy and breastfeeding):
Cappuccino

Cappuccino

Coffee and non–herbal teas (like black and green tea) contain high amounts of caffeine. There’s still not enough data about the safety of caffeine for an embryo, a fetus and a newborn. Caffeine ingested by a pregnant woman gets to her bloodstream, can reach the placenta and therefore crosses to the fetus’ blood. It can also get to the breast milk. It’s best to avoid caffeine during those periods or to minimize your intake to no more than 300 mg/day, which is about 2 servings of coffee, tea or other caffeine containing drinks like soda (cola), energy drinks and maté. Decaffeinated versions could be an alternative to regular coffee and teas since they contain a low amount of caffeine.

  • Herbal teas during childbearing:
Herbal tea

Rosehip tea

Herbal tea or tisane is a tea that generally doesn’t contain caffeine and is made mostly from an herb or could be a blend of different types of herbs, spices and other plants.

Although natural generally rhymes with something good and that’s why a lot of brands try to use that term in marketing their herbal products, it is not a synonym of safe. Natural herbs can sometimes have a drug-like effect on our body. There are so many types of herbs on the market, few of them are scientifically studied and even less are tested for their hazardous effects during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Also herbs sold in pharmacies and health stores are still not regulated by health agencies and so there’s no guarantee of their safety, effectiveness and purity. Hence, it’s best to be cautious when opting for a cup of tisane. Here are some options of herbal teas that are considered safer than others but should also be consumed in moderation (2 cups/day): ginger, bitter orange, citrus peel, echinacea, peppermint, red raspberry leaf, rosemary and rosehips.

In moderation and with a bit of care, keep on relishing your little pleasures!