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Julie writes...

When I first began my time here at Zentangle, Inc, I learned how to do many things.

I learned how to count tiles (there is a technique!). I learned how to assemble Zentangle Kits. I learned the ins and outs of our products and our website. I learned many things, but perhaps the most important thing I learned, was how to prepare tea.

Jen writes...

Almost a decade ago, through Molly, I was invited to meet Rick and Maria to potentially come work for Zentangle, Inc. I was returning to the workforce after staying home with my girls for almost a decade, and I was a tad bit nervous (sort of incredibly funny if you know Rick and Maria). I came prepared with a resume, my volunteer work I had kept busy with, all the trimmings needed for a job interview and the only direct question I remember being asked was, "Do you drink tea?"

Judi writes...

Before working for ZHQ, I had been Maria's neighbor for over 20 years, and occasionally I would pop over for tea even back to the days of Pendragon. It was the perfect morning reset I needed. Now as a ZHQ employee, I thoroughly enjoy my job as teatime "hostess with the most-est" on the days I work.

Stephanie writes...

My very special first memory of teatime, was my first day of work. I was hired not being a family member, a neighbor, or friend, so I had no idea what the teatime ritual was. I had just settled in, getting my workspace set up, starting to set up all my logins and the software I needed, and very loudly from the bottom of the stairs, Sue yells, "Teatime". Up pops Molly, quickly followed by Julie, with the admonition that when Sue signals "Teatime", you move.

Sue writes...

Teatime is a special time. Time to slow down, have a conversation, not only to catch up on ZHQ happenings but to also catch up on all the other goings-on in everyone's lives. We make it an extra special occasion if it is someone's birthday, and I always make sure there are enough perfectly burnt rice cakes with puddles of butter and extra pepper. They are my specialty!

The call of "Teatime!" signals us all that it is time to take a break. Tea has been upstairs and downstairs. Down the street, across the street and at one time, over Zoom. The places have changed and some of the faces have changed, but teatime remains a part of ZHQ culture. Teatime is about so much more than just tea and snacks. It represents all of the values that we hold near and dear to our hearts. Teatime represents pausing and slowing down, connection, gratitude.

There is a ceremony to it, a care to the preparation, the tea pot is warmed with hot water prior to brewing the tea so it is always hot. Our special cups are gathered as well as the lightly tangled cloth napkins Maria created from super soft sheets. It is like laying down the dots, border and string, and the tangles of teatime are the conversations that weave together. Some are light, some are more like drama tangles that demand attention, and some are those mac n' cheese conversations which usually involve shoes. It is another known stroke of teatime that at the mention of shoes, Rick excuses himself.

It has always been important to us to find balance between changing and evolving with the world around us, but also staying true to what is at the heart of the Zentangle Method. Many things have changed over the past 20 years, but one thing remains the same....tea is at 10.

If you want to learn more about who you might find at teatime, you can Get to Know the Zentangle Crew in this blog




  • Hello! I love this blog episode ;-) and I just had to share, that here in Ireland, we scald the teapot before we make the tea. Then there is the queue of cups… lightest tea is poured first and then so on, until the “builder” tea… in which you could stand the teaspoon… cause its so strong . But nothing beats a cup of tea with friends and family xxx love to all, enjoy your tea, however you take it.

    Claire Thurstan CZTEU4 on

  • Hello dear friends!
    Such a sweet letter!
    Time for tea!
    I love tea!
    Smart tradition!
    Even more tied to the stages of work in the zentangle!
    Be healthy, talented and good people!
    And…keep filling us with your magic!

    Дафи on

  • I loves this, if only other work places could do this. Time flies by so fast we need to remember to slow down and enjoy the little pleasures in life. Tea is definitely one of mine!

    Michele Couture on

  • I love this! Very heartwarming 💗

    Suchitra on

  • Thank you for sharing this lovely post- reading your descriptions simply reflects the phenomenal beings each and every one of you are. How blessed we all are with your Presence. Deep Gratitude for ALL you share! Promise Smithson CZT 11 & 20

    Promise Smithson on

  • Love your beautiful tradition and reminder!

    Berit Kyllo-Steinmoen on

  • I am so glad you’re recognising the importance of tea-time. I always found it odd when I visited the US that many hotel rooms don’t have kettles and many of my friends and colleagues didn’t own kettles (how on earth do you boil water for tea?). Whether it’s morning or afternoon tea, English breakfast, Earl Grey, Darjeeling, Green, Jasmine, Chamomile or a lovely espresso coffee, it’s so important to gather around, take a break and breathe. Thank you for the reminder.

    Carolina Peters on

  • So very heartwarming!

    Clara A Brunk on

  • Our family developed a ritual of doing the Saturday quizz. It started as an encouragement for my daughter to read more, but evolved into a requirement of anyone who stayed at our home on the weekend. Mostly our children’s friends, but also family and our friends. I would exclaim we needed the help! We never really found a great sports expert, so mostly the result never changed. Years on our children’s friends still ask if we do the quizz, or pop in to do it, and even report their results in other quizzes they have joined in. These same friends also sat around our table and drew zentangles on a vinyl table cloth with double ended sharpies. An excellent calming technique during those matriculation years. My daughter became a book worm btw.

    Ros Badcock. Roslynczt36 on

  • Yea time or coffee time is part of my life too. Whether it’s with family or friends or by myself it happens…any time between 7am and 8.30pm!

    Jenny Bollinger on

  • I neglected to mention that I am CZT #14

    Mindy Shapiro on

  • I have always loved tea, especially black tea. I remember back in high school in mid 70s complaining to one of my teachers that there were coffee mugs but no tea mugs. She found one for me that listed different kinds of tea. Fast forward many decades and I am still a serious tea drinker and so appreciate when I get to go to London and buy it at Fortnum & Mason. It’s rare but it happens. During Covid my husband and I started a tradition of waffle Wednesday. I found an amazing gluten-free and vegan recipe. We always pull out different tea cups inherited from grandmothers. A few have been bought because they are so beautiful so I can really appreciate the ritual of teatime . It is so important. And we still do waffle Wednesday

    Mindy Shapiro on

  • What a beautiful atmosphere you’ve created at Zentangle headquarters, with a time for tea, for catching up, and slowing down. I can only imagine how lovely it is to be employee/friend and family there! You inspire me in so many ways, and this is going to be added to the list!

    Jane Elaine on

  • What a wonderful way to destress, slow down & appreciate one another. Bijou would be very proud of you all for taking his advice.

    Leslee Feiwus CZT on

  • What a wonderful way to destress, slow down & appreciate one another. Bijou would be very proud of you all for taking his advice.

    Leslee Feiwus CZT on

  • Ritual. I think of Zentangling as a ritual in a way. A special time with tools and familiar actions that creates a ‘climate’. I have a ritual with my students that they all look forward to each week. This year I have created a placemat for use in class that will become part of the ritual. The placemat has spaces for new tangles, new techniques, scribbling, and checklists. It also has a space for the word of the day that defines the process or concept for the days tangle.

    Thank you all for sharing the teatime ritual at ZHQ. On July 15 I have my rice cakes ready and join you teatime!

    Ann Baum on

  • Tea time, taking a break from the hustle and bustle that seems to permeate our lives. Mine is usually about 4p.m., with the cat to keep me company!

    Ginger White CZT34 on

  • Thank you for the email and will say prayers for your husband. Not drinking tea but I am coffee

    Linda on

  • Tea and Tangle has such a nice ring to it. I sometimes do a tea and tangle Sunday afternoon for my students and friends. Always fun and the tea leaves go onto a piece of card stock or watercolor paper to stain for the next time to do our tangling on.

    Sue Lesle CZT on

  • What a delightful tradition and newsletter. I am South African born and teatime was always our family tradition. Alos a time for a break and to catch up with one another and what was going on in everyone’s life.

    Julie, I would love to learn the technique of counting tiles and packing kits. That is always a struggle when I am packing kits for my students. Especially for the kits I need to send to students far away and overseas. At home it is not a tragedy if the count is incorrect as I can always hand over the missing tile but for those far distant it does present a real problem.
    I just love being a member of this extended Zentangle family. Thank you all so much for all the love and support.

    Kathy McMurtry CZT on

  • This is a wonderful tradition! It’s so nice that you take time out to have tea. What a lovely way to come together each day as a group of people who work with each other. I spend some time in India each year and the tradition of tea is one of my favorites – chai of course!

    Dione Greenberg on

  • Having 10 o’clock “tea” with y’all today in the hospital while my husband is getting stents. I feel the connection. ❤️

    MaryAnn Scheblein-Dawson, CZT #1 on

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