We're honored to introduce you to Heather Wright Fitzgerald, who is the owner of Tea and Tarot. It's a small business located in Madison, CT, with mighty and far reaching energy. So much so that we came across Tea and Tarot via social and became obsessed with their offerings, readings and newsletter.
Heather is an herbal wellness coach and a tarot practitioner. Yep! She blends these two passions together with the goal of leading you towards greater wisdom about your life's journey. While she sells many selections of herbal teas, it is the combination of a traditional tarot card reading with herbal tea or flower essence that allows you to take the energy of your reading and feel it on a daily basis.
We had to find out more about the power of tea -- and tarot, and the journey behind this magical shop.
You can find out more about Heather, and the offerings + tea from Tea and Tarot at www.teaandtarotboutique.com.
You can also follow Heather across Social channels @theteatarotwitch and @teatarotboutique.
Also, up-level your skills with Heather's "The Root of Tarot" course, the beginner Tarot course that will start your holistic tarot journey!
Visit theseekingcenter.com for more from Robyn + Karen, plus mega inspo -- and the best wellness + spiritual practitioners, products and experiences on the planet!
You can also follow Seeking Center on Instagram @theseekingcenter
Robyn: [00:00:00] I'm Robyn Miller Brecker,
Karen: and I'm Karen Loenser. Welcome to seeking center. The podcast,
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Robyn: Karen came across Heather Wright Fitzgerald from Tea and Tarot several months ago. Tea and Tarot is located in Madison, Connecticut. It is a small business with. It is a small business with mighty and far-reaching energy. We were so impressed by Heather's offerings, readings, and [00:01:00] newsletter that we had to find out more.
Heather is an herbalist and a Tarot practitioner. She blends these two passions together with the goal of leading you towards greater wisdom about your life's journey. while she sells many selections of herbal teas, it is the combination of a traditional Tarot card reading with herbal tea or flower essence that then allows you to take the energy of your reading and feel it on a daily basis.
We are going to talk more about the power of Tea and and the journey behind this woman owned, black owned, and LGBTQ plus owned magical shop. Hi Heather.
Karen: Hi Heather. We're so excited that you're here today. We have been following you and your work for quite a while.
We're not quite sure how we stumbled upon it, which I love in a way. I think it's just magical that we were able to make this all work and find you and connect.
let's start by diving in and telling us a little bit about what an herbalist is and how did you come
into being an herbalist?
Yeah, so believe it or not, I don't use the word herbalist yet[00:02:00] I'm very new in my journey.
Most of my teachers who I study from have been herbalist for 20, 25 years. So their depth of experience is much richer than mine. I feel herbalist, it's really reserved for somebody who spent a long time studying.
Cuz you have to think about that. There's thousands of plants out there, there's so many different ways to work with them safely, and there's so many different things they can do for our body as well as possible. Contraindications with other medications and things that people are doing is because that is such a huge subject to dive into.
I was always taught, at least from my herb teacher that we reserve that word for people that have a decent amount of experience. Now there are at home herbalist people that Practice at home with their families. They call themselves herbalist and they may or may not have clinical experience.
There's a wide range of ways that people use that word. for me my herbal journey and education is ongoing. It should be for the rest of my life, for right now I use herbal wellness coach cuz I'm a certified health coach with an herbal twist.
So I've probably spent about five or six years now studying herbalism and , I hope to continue. I think
[00:03:00] that goes a long way to talking about your, the incredible integrity . And I know that we'll talk a little bit more about that. What in your mind then, allows you to.
Lean into that title, how much study, how much time spent and also talk about where you studied, cuz I think that was very important. Think that people may be interested in that as
Heather: well. Absolutely. One of my herbal teachers always said that, There are so many different ways to approach herbalism and that you should learn from as many teachers as you can, and I've been privileged to know two of them in person.
So I studied with Rosemary Roast in Winsted, Connecticut. Her entire yard is just all things that she grows, She knows how to do, preserving a canning and that kind of thing. Wonderful woman. And one of my other teachers that I still work really closely with is Lupo Pace of Twin Star Connecticut.
She owns Twin Star Apothecary in Connecticut, and she is an incredible teacher. She lives this so deeply. It's part of who she is, and she gave me the tools to be, at Herbalist. She's mentored me as I started my business.
She's taught me everything that she possibly could, even in her own [00:04:00] personal time. Anyone who's looking to learn anything about herbalism, I know that she has an online class as well as in person classes. And those classes are wonderful.
I highly recommend doing them. If you're interested I've had the privilege as well to work with the Herbal Academy of New England. They are entirely online school based out of Massachusetts. They also have an array of different types of classes all online.
Wonderful. Really huge resource of different types of teachers that study and offer different types of herbal directions. For some herbalist, it's how do I make products? For some, it's how do I bring this home to my children and offer this, on a level where I can take care of my family.
For some it's having an apothecary where you can meet with clients and do clinical type work. There's so much that you can do with it. They definitely give a wide arrangement of different ways, different paths that you can take with your herbal journey. And I've been able to help with them a little bit.
They had an entrepreneur course that they put out last year, and they asked me to be a part of it, which was really exciting. It was very validating to me that again, I'm very tiny, but still having this reach into these communities that I [00:05:00] love so much.
Robyn: What led you on this journey
Heather: For me, it was actually very personal. I was not feeling great. I actually worked for a trade show company called Read Exhibitions where we did a lot of trade shows, different types of stuff, b2b b2, C trade shows, so I was traveling a lot.
I was exhausted all the time. I'd be going back and forth to Las Vegas, a lot, New York City traveling all around doing these shows. It was just such a grueling experience for me. And I was just drained all the time and I couldn't figure out why all of my colleagues were like going out and partying in Las Vegas and I was just like anxious to go to bed and I couldn't figure out what's going on.
So after a couple years of going to different doctors and them basically just trying to treat symptoms, Let's put you on this for depression. Let's put you on this for a possible thyroid condition. Let's put you on this. For this and this. None of it ever made me feel any better. It got to the point where I spent two weeks in bed because I couldn't physically get myself out of bed to go to work.
And I was like, All right, there's gotta be something I can do for myself. I just wasn't getting enough from these 15 minute interactions with doctors. They were just recommending me to other [00:06:00] people, and let's try this and let's do that. And none of it really got to the root of what it was for me. And interestingly enough, it was because of my own study, and herbalism my own desire to educate myself on nutrition.
I found that all of my problems were because I didn't understand what I needed to eat properly. As many people probably know, you go into the grocery store and everything's marketed for healthy, this low fat, that sugar free, This not realizing all the other chemicals and substances that are in these foods that we consume every day.
And being a very active professional that traveled a lot, I didn't always have the best choices in food, so I didn't realize that I was making it harder for myself to function by not properly eating and consuming all these things that had, sugars and chemicals that I didn't realize the good thing, the right thing, only to turn out that wasn't it.
But along that way, I started to love nutrition. I started to fall in love with the idea that I could find different herbs to support myself right at home. And my kitchen slowly grew into the ary. I had jars everywhere cuz I was just mixing whatever I felt I needed [00:07:00] in the moment. And there's such a beautiful power in that, there are quite a few things that are right at our fingertips that we can just understand and use within our home that can support us depending on how we're feeling that day.
And that, just made me fall in love with it. I had to have everything herbal related that I could find. And I started looking for classes that I could take at night so I could do my work, my day job and still study to be come hopefully some day a full fledged herbalist. it's been a really amazing journey.
It's very empowering when you realize that there's a lot of things that our grandmothers and our great grandmothers and our great grandmothers knew that we've lost and we're trying to reclaim that now. It's such a powerful journey. What would
Heather: say were
Robyn: the first few herbs that made the difference in your
Yes. It's funny to me, I always laugh because the very first herb I tried to play with for thyroid was bladder rack, and it's this horrible smelling. Seaweed. I'm sure there's some people that love it, but as an intro herb, it was not for me. It was very stinky. I did not get past the smell. But what was really interesting for [00:08:00] me is that I started to dig into all sorts of stuff.
And when I had my herbal aha moment was I had been studying an herb called I Bright, which at this point it's really difficult to find at least in New England, . But I managed to find some, My father had just had cataract surgery and was on these steroids that he was using, and he would have to put drops in his eyes and he would get huge, like really bad bloodshot eyes.
Even months after the treatment had started, he had to then keep renewing this medication that was 300, almost $400 a pop every month. And he was supposed to only use it for a month. So the fact that he was using it for repeated months was not good, and they just kept giving him more of the steroid.
So I said let me try something. My herbals teacher and I had talked about it and she thought that I should introduce I bright. And then another herb. Actually, it's more like a berry. It's called Bill Berry. And so he wasn't gonna take a tea , but I got him capsules and sure enough, within three weeks he no longer needed the steroid.
His eyes cleared up and he's not had an incident since. So that was my first okay, there's like something to this. This is really [00:09:00] interesting. No, there are limitations. We understand that we can't do everything with herbs. there is a time and place for western modern medicine, but how amazing that there's things that we don't even realize that can serve us and they're right around us.
So that was my first herb that I was like, Okay, this is cool. I wanna know what else I can do.
Karen: Wow. It's funny because it's even like things like echanacea right? Isn't Sia and Herb. I don't know, maybe 10 years ago nobody had really heard of it, and now it's in everything.
And so I think people are starting to be aware at least that these can complement some of the more contemporary types of medicine
Heather: That we use. Absolutely. And how many herbs that we actually probably already have our home and didn't know, like most people will have camomile tea, but they don't know all the benefits that it has.
It's not just for sleep, it's for digestion. It's a really perfect herb for children, especially if they're fussy, having a hard time going to bed. There's just endless possibilities with camomile, and it's something that's in most people's cabinets, they probably don't even know the full depth of what it can do.
Robyn: And where were you finding the herbs? Were you [00:10:00] sourcing them from different places or was it
Heather: local? A little bit of both. So anytime that I had the ability to go to herb class, and I used to travel almost two hours to go to Herb class every week. Because of where the class was actually located, we do a lot of wild crafting.
So we would walk through woods or different areas that we knew were safe and harvest things that we could find ethically source them. So this way you don't take everything. You always make sure that you leave some, But we would harvest anything that we could find. Nowadays, we try to grow some.
I'm very lucky that a young man who works here during the summer when he's not in college, his studies in plant genetics and biotech. So he helps me with my garden every year. So we try to grow as much as we can. And then anything else that we can't get, cuz not everything would grow well here in Connecticut, which is, a cooler temperature. We definitely try to ethically source from places where they're getting them sustainably and supporting the plant life as much as possible.
Cuz some people definitely overuse certain plants and stuff and don't necessarily take care of them. So we have to think about the plants as we take from them as well. Have there [00:11:00] been
Karen: some herbs that are your real go-to, the ones that you really wanna make sure that you have
Heather: at your fingertip?
Yeah. If I could pick two herbs that I would definitely go to all the time, it would be Ashwaganda and holy basil, also known as tulsi. They're often paired together cuz they're known as very common ayurvedic herbs. They are. A wonderful pair for stress and anxiety. They're considered adaptogens, which means that they help the body adapt to stress.
And so they do a good job of helping to calm us down. They actually help reduce our cortisol level, which is our stress hormone in the body. It physically helps lower our stress without making us sleepy. So it's a really good tea. I usually recommend that. Or we have another Adapto G blend that we sell in the store.
We recommend that for afternoons for people that are coffee lovers and shouldn't have caffeine in the afternoon because caffeine stays in our body for eight hours. So if you're having trouble sleeping, that's usually one of the first questions I ask is, how much coffee do you have a day? And then to switch to something like adaptogen blends in [00:12:00] the afternoon.
So this way you can still stay awake and alert, but not overly stimulated. And this way your body naturally gets tired when it's time to go to bed. . Wow. I didn't know
Karen: caffeine stayed in your system
Heather: for eight hours. So most people will have an afternoon cup of coffee and basically what you're doing is you're borrowing from tomorrow's energy when you do that.
So the idea is that you want to have one or two cups of coffee like early in the morning when you first get up, and then by afternoon switch to a tea that's either lightly caffeinated or herbal is always best. I think prepares your body for the cycle of having to stay awake and then going to sleep properly.
Robyn: And speaking of tea, so you have all these herbs and there's different ways to use them. How did you decide to harness that for tea? And can you talk a bit about
The power of tea?
Heather: So for me, I fell in love with tea because It was easy to do at first. It was so easy to make tea, but then I realized it was actually an art form to it.
It wasn't so much just dumping everything into a cup. It was how do I choose the amounts and whatnot. So how do I actually make tea? that took experience playing with different plants and getting used to how they [00:13:00] taste and how much I want to work with depending on if I'm trying to support the physical or emotional or even spiritual body.
So that again is that's a hard one to put into a nutshell, but it just took experience figuring out what I like to work with. And so I found that it was part of my daily ritual was to think about what I needed each day to support myself. And then I, having everything right in front of me in a cabinet where I get to pull whatever I needed is so magical.
It's now become such an addiction that I had to get a shop so that I could support all of it. Cuz I had hundreds of herbs, it took over my kitchen and when I moved in with my partner, she was like, I don't know where we're gonna put this all. I was like, Yeah, I need a shop. Basically. I need to start a business because I just had so much stuff.
I love it. It's really amazing. Can I
Robyn: also ask too, my husband and I were talking about this when you talked about the art form obviously of combining the herbs, but how about for making the tea, what is the best way to prepare your cup of tea?
Heather: Okay, So really important is to know what type of plant matter you're working with. If it's traditional tea which is actually made from traditional tea leaves. So if it's like black tea, green tea, white [00:14:00] tea, that kind of thing, they actually have different temperatures that they need to be brewed at.
So having a teapot that would tell you what temperature you want your teapot at, or how you want the water to boil will be really impactful for how the flavor taste. The other thing that I had to explain to a customer the other day is less is. I felt so bad she was just dumping spoonfuls of stuff, trying to make it the way we make it here.
And I had explained to her, Whoa, cuz she came in for a bag a week later and I was like, You, how did you use that much tea in a week? She goes, I'm using spoonfuls. No, you only need a little bit. So usually the size of a traditional teeball or roughly like a teaspoon of tea per cup is enough.
And then you wanna make sure that the water is either hot enough. So if you're doing roots berries, anything that's rough or thick, you want the water to be hotter and you want it to sit longer. If you're doing something that has a lot of flowers like lavender, jasmine, Rose, anything like that,
you don't want it to be quite as hot. Maybe about 180 5 is enough and you actually wanna pour high, so you wanna pour high enough that it doesn't burn the flowers as the water hits the [00:15:00] tea. I'm telling you those really su it's like baking where the subtle differences make the difference in how the tea taste.
I've learned so much the last few years just trying to figure out what's the best way to do this. So always recommend temperature gaging. If you don't have the fancy pot, you can just get a thermometer and just check the water before you pour it in. But yeah, less is more with the her itself.
And loose leaf is always even better if you can get high quality plants. Whether you grow them yourself. Sometimes that's the best. If you have fresh plant matter that you can grab from your garden, that's the best tea ever. And then for steeping,
Robyn: does each, is each combination different or is there a recommended timing
Heather: for steeping it?
Yeah, so I would recommend for most four to five minutes. Is pretty good if it's something like camomile, you wanna take it out. So most people will leave their teabag in or they'll possibly leave their take everything out. If it's something like camomile, because camomile gets more bitter the longer it sits in the water.
So if you want it to be sweet and that butterscotchy flavor, you wanna take the herb out. Same thing with any other kind of light flour. You [00:16:00] wanna make sure that you're only steaming it for a few minutes. It'll really light floral taste to it versus, your roots and berries and the heavier things, seeds, anything like that.
You wanna make sure that you're letting it sit a little bit longer. Cause
Karen: the water influence, I know it influences the flavor, but does it influence the impact on the absorption into the body? The reason why I ask is I know you could cook these, right? You could steam them, And ingest them that way.
What's the power of the water combination with
Heather: the plant? For me. So the way my herb teacher used to talk about water in particular is that water carries a certain charge, an energetic charge, and that's why some people even will charge their water or tea or something before they take it cuz it will resonate with us a little bit deeper.
We are made of mostly water. So there's an element to that. I forgot the gentleman's name. There was a gentleman that did a study about the art of water that being able to speak, I wanna say his last name was like Moto or something like that. That's right. It's about, how, speaking to water and the intention that we add to water can influence the way that it grows and develops.
So thinking [00:17:00] about the fact that we're choosing plants that all have different personalities, so we as herbalist believe, or we as herbal enthusiasts believe that there are different personalities and attributes that each plant offers us based on where it grows the color, how it even reproduces. All sorts of things will tell us a little bit about what it does energetically.
Nevermind medicinally, but energetically. And adding those intentions to water in particular has a different sense of power. It's, again, it's an opportunity to make a ritual that you can make part of your day. It's super easy to do cuz it only takes you five minutes. I usually, this is part of my tea magic.
I actually teach a little class on how to do tea magic. But one of the biggest pieces of that is at asking the plant for its intended purpose to serve in the water so that when you drink it, you're bringing about, you're manifesting that type of energy that you're trying to bring in. So for me it's always meant I'm a water sign.
So anything in water is wonderful for me. So that kind of has an added value to put your herbs in water and either drink it or even bathe in it. However you choose.
Karen: Oh, I love that. I bet just so many [00:18:00] people have never really thought about drinking tea as a ritual or a spiritual practice.
Heather: love that you brought that up. Super magical. Especially because the fact that you could do it very easily each day, it doesn't have to be involved. Most people think that their magic or any sort of ritual things that they do has to be time consuming, and you have to be super formal about it.
And yes, those things are beautiful, but if you don't have time for that, sometimes it's as simple as, I've chosen lavender today and I've chosen chamomile and I've chosen burdock, and these are gonna support me today. And I ask for those attributes when I add them into it. So it's nice. It's such a beautiful way to kick off the day with whatever I need.
Or end the day, I know in my life it really has, as you just said, it has become a ritual. And now I'm gonna add to it intention. So Please, yes, please, for that.
Heather: I always attribute that to how I found my wife. It was actually through Tea Magic. So there was one New Year's Eve that instead of going out partying, I decided to do a tea ritual with one of my best friends.
And we did just that. We asked for, the attributes we wanted and we added them to our water and then we [00:19:00] just enjoyed it. So I leave my teapot on a little trivet and I drank it over the course of couple hours maybe. And I ended up meeting my partner shortly after I did that. And it's funny to me because when I met her, she knew nothing about tea and she actually Oh, that's really cute that she was, that you do that until I started making her tea, I made her fresh lemon bum that I grew in my garden outside of my home.
And after that day she was like, I don't know what that did, but it was the best night of sleep she's had. So now she's all about it. She's What can you give me for this? What can we work on with that? She's all into it now, which is lovely. .
Robyn: thank you for sharing that and.
Two questions from that. One is, what did you say to manifest? Cuz I have a feeling people are going to be asking. And then I also wanna just make a comment, which is your point in that she was like, What are you doing? And what is really the power in this? And then was, transformed just because it actually did something.
It becomes a gateway right to, to the power of
Heather: herb. totally. Yes. She's actually my favorite person to try new things with because number one, she knows I'm never gonna hurt [00:20:00] her. I do have her permission to do this, but I don't always tell her what I'm doing when I'm doing it. And so I like to just I will make a certain tea, but not explain to her what exactly is in it.
I know her allergies, so I know that I'm obviously taking care. I'm making sure that she's safe, but I will give her things just to see how she responds to them. And one time in particular, I thought this was hilarious. I had cut cut down a ton of mugwort which grows really crazy up here in New England.
And I cut down a piece into a wand, and I brought it home and I just set it in the bedroom on a dresser. And I didn't say anything to her about it. And after a couple nights she said to me I'm having really vivid dreams. I can't actually relax. Like my dreams are just super wild.
I feel like I'm watching a movie. And then she stopped. She goes, What did you do ? It's cause mugwort is so powerful for dreams, intuition, psychic abilities, even. It can open up your third eye. So energetically it's a really powerful plant. And so I explained to her, I left the mug wart in the room.
I didn't explain her what it was, but she's Can you remove that now? I need to be able to sleep. So I took it out. But I get a kick outta doing stuff [00:21:00] like that with her because she she trusts me for one. So you always have to have their permission. and two.
She doesn't always know a hundred percent. So when she feels something, I know I've struck on something.
Robyn: What would you recommend in terms of manifesting? In terms of manifesting a partner
Heather: So we actually, I didn't realize this, that she and I actually did the same thing she had written down in, in a different way. She didn't do a T spell. She wasn't really into magic before she met me. But she had written in a journal all the things that she wanted in her partner.
And so she wrote down very specific things that were important to her. And so did I, Mine was significantly more focused on how I wanted to feel with that person, more so than them having this laundry list of physical attributes or anything like that. Cuz while attraction is important, it wasn't the only thing that I cared about.
So I wanted to make sure that I actually connected with a person That actually made me happy, that actually wanted to go on this life's journey with me and be a contributing partner. And so I used a lot of language around what it was that I really saw my ideal partner being, and charge that into the water, into the [00:22:00] herbs that I chose specifically for it.
And along came my wife about three months later after I had been through a difficult breakup, and we ended up, having a lovely friendship and it blossomed into more, and now we're married .
Karen: Wow. Power of intention,
Heather: yes. Love. That's totally,
Karen: Now, can we shift a little bit, because your company name is Tea and Tarot which is such an intriguing combination. Can you talk a little bit about how
Heather: you got into Tarot Yes, So Tarot was actually one that around the same time as I started my health journey very independently I found Tarot. I had been going through a breakup and so I ended up visiting a Tarot reader. I went up to Salem, Massachusetts, and a gentleman did a reading for me and he basically felt that I belonged to a line of white witches and that my intuition would come really naturally to me and that I would have an easy time learning this type of tool.
So I let that sit with me for a little while and I felt that it was a much healthier expression of my sadness during [00:23:00] that breakup to put it into learning something new and trying to find something that made me feel better, at least helped me move through that transition. I had actually tried to learn Tarot when I was younger.
I had bought an astrology Tarott deck when I was in college, maybe. I could not figure it out to save my life. I didn't understand the first thing about astrology or Tarot. So trying to learn that intuitively just didn't come. I've learned a lot more about where I would start or where I suggest to my students where they should start if they wanna learn Tarot and it's not there.
you don't start with the pretty fancy decks that have, multiple different avenues. That's not the place to start. So after I had this reading with this gentleman, I decided to pick up a deck and start playing with it. And it took me probably a good two or three years of just private study with it.
Not that you have to go that route, I wasn't really intending it to be for anybody other than myself at first. It was just an opportunity for me to pull card each day reflect on how I felt, reflect on what I saw naturally, and then come back to it later on and see if those messages made sense to me a day later, a week later, a month [00:24:00] later, et cetera.
So it started very simply as just a tool to support myself more so than anything. And then later on I started doing readings for family and friends. They would come to my kitchen and I would have tea, so I would go into my apothecary depending on whatever we talked about. I was like, Oh, I know a lot about this different plant that would support this emotional need or this flower essence that would support this emotional need.
So it became this really organic expression of pairing these two mediums that just seemed to have this beautiful synergy with each other very naturally. So it was a way for me to offer the person that was sitting there across from me something to take with them so that they're, hopefully whatever they were going through, they could then use this tea or flower essence as a additional support long after our reading was over.
Robyn: I really feel like people listen. Are going to now see this as a different type of resource. , I don't think that most people, number one, have thought about t this way and then Tarot and the combination. And can you also talk a little bit about the difference that you feel is between an intuitive and a [00:25:00] psychic?
Heather: Yes. So I'm certainly, I should preface this too, that I'm not the first person to combine herbs in Tarot for sure. There are decks that I usually work with that are herbal decks, but I found they didn't necessarily lend themselves to tea. So that's how I ended up creating my own way and intuitively leaning on my own herbal knowledge.
Cuz there are fabulous decks out there. There's the herbal Tarot and there's the herb crafter. Tarot both of them are gorgeous. But , some of the things that they put on them are like garlic and cayenne and not ideal for tea. So I'm not the first person to combine these two things, I'm probably the, can at least say that for me, I had to find a way to connect these two things in a way that translated entity for clients.
So that was my twist on kind of an existing practice. For me, the difference between intuitive and psychic is at least my understanding, Is that psychic abilities can give a depth of knowledge that may originate from, the unknown. It could be from divine sources, it could be just, a sense of self, but usually come with specifics.
Meaning that a psychic may have insight into very specifics, like [00:26:00] names, dates, places colors, all sorts of things. They may intuitively know these things and be able to give a lot more detail. Whereas I feel there are definitely people that have these gifts and perhaps someday I'll have honed mine enough to feel that I can do that.
I think at this point in my journey, I feel that intuitive describes me a little bit better cuz it's, it is a sense of knowing, but it's not always highly specific. It's meant to, dig into the unknown And there is I do believe there's magic involved, but
I'm not necessarily gonna throw out a name or a date or something that specific.
Karen: I'm glad you clarified that. Cause I think so many people have either a misconception or aren't exactly sure the difference between the two. And I think intuition is a gateway. to the more. Wouldn't you say the more you practice your intuition, the more you can
Heather: potentially see.
And , there will always be those that it comes more naturally too, and they don't have to work at it or practice if they just see or feel or think or know certain things. For some of us it may be more practic. I do believe that most people have an [00:27:00] intuitive sense. I definitely feel like the feminine energy within us is definitely that direct lineage to our intuition.
But how we practice it and how we use it is really, on us to, to hone and to develop. So how did
Karen: these two practices of tea and Tarot come into your business? Vision?
Robyn: Yeah. How did this create this store and this online
Heather: business? Yeah, it, again, it started very organically for me. These two things started separately and then I started to see them merge together.
Cause I fell in love with both of them independently. And I think it was like five or six years ago that I really started thinking about creating tea and Tarot and making it more of a thing. I was, working a day job in a corporate environment and sitting in a cube thinking like, I'm living this double life.
Because, as much as I love what I was doing at the time I really was feeling very called to this direction. It just felt really awesome to be able to support people in this very specific way. I never thought that I would've been able to manifest a physical location as quickly as I did. That happened, that surprised me even in [00:28:00] 2020.
I decided to open up a physical location and on paper like it, I'm not even sure it made sense. My wife is a financial analyst and she was like, I don't know if you should do this right now. we're going through a global pandemic. , we'll probably be in the start starting of a recession even.
So she's I'm not sure this makes sense, but everything in me told me to do it. I ended up finding this beautiful house in a really beautiful part of new. In Madison, Connecticut, and the house is 300 years old. And when I saw this space that had a cute little kitchen, I didn't eat a commercial kitchen, so that was also like really special that I found a place that looked this beautiful, had a kitchen that was enough for me to do my dishes and make my products.
but it was just, it was so cute and it was around the corner. It has these beautiful, gorgeous beams in it. there's something about it that was just so special. So I was like, I'm just gonna try this. I'm just gonna jump in. What's the worst that could happen? It doesn't work out. And I'm, I'm back to my day job.
So I decided to take the leap of faith. And it only confirmed for me that I had made a good choice and that I found out shortly after [00:29:00] I moved into the space and started setting things up. I found out the house had a really interesting history. There was a. Who lived here named Abigail Megs, and I found this out because there's actually a plaque on the front of the house that says it belongs to our Madison Historical Society.
Came to find out that Abigail Megs was an activist herself. She used to host tea and spinning parties here in the house, and because she was protesting importation taxes of British goods, she would only serve herbal tea. So it really hit home for me that I had made a good choice and that this was a good time for this.
It was also confirmed for me the number of women who walked through my door. The moment that I opened, I realized that especially for women, I had created a space where they could just exhale. So many of them had lost jobs. Their children were now home and they were tasked with having to homeschool them on top of their work.
They were still trying to manage their households. The recession . Changed their finances. It also made it difficult for them just to figure out how to navigate their day to day. They were so overwhelmed. And so creating a space where these women could come in and just exhale for a [00:30:00] minute, we could talk to them about self care and support them in any way we could.
Just felt so good. It really was wonderful that we could pay it forward in that way the first year, especially women of color, especially our queer community that lives near us. I was just really blessed to be able to do that with an amazing team that works here and help support.
Karen: I was just gonna say that, just to underscore the fact that you opened the store right when Covid hit.
So for many you would think that would be probably the worst time. And really you were affirmed was it was really the best time for
Heather: your community. And I had lucked out too. So the gentleman that, owns this house he bent over backwards to help me get in here, and I didn't even pay what he should have collected for rent when I first started here.
He was so amazing. for a minute I second guessed myself and I almost took everything off the table and he called me and he said, How can I help you get into this house? He really supported my vision of what I was trying to do, and he made it accessible for me to do what I was doing. In so many ways, his kindness allowed me to then share, to be able to serve our community and be there and pay it forward.
So that meant a [00:31:00] lot to me that we could do that and he was willing to work with me and make it, easy for me to make this happen. Feel really blessed. It feels a
Robyn: sole connection It really does. And then did you have the foresight when you did open that you would then create this online presence because you do such a beautiful job with how you are putting out messages into the world, which is how we
Heather: found you.
Thank you. Thank you. That means a lot to me. My background is in video production and marketing, and I've been in the corporate and commercial environment for so long that I understood branding and aesthetic. And so that was a piece of it for me. I'm a creative person at my heart, so I really wanted to take beautiful photos and do beautiful design and whatnot.
Product development was really important to me. And all those things I was lucky that I had this background that I was able to tap into. I did find there's a learning curve, like c. Branding and marketing is very different than personal branding and marketing, corporate environments.
You got a team of people and everybody's chipping in to do stuff when it's just you and you're your full marketing team, plus the finance team, [00:32:00] plus the product making team, plus, you're everything, you even have to do the dishes and take out the trash. It's a different ballgame.
But I learned really quickly that there were places that I really liked it. I'm very fortunate that I was able to tap another marketing person locally who was able to help support it cuz it's basically takes two of us to do it. And there's, a lot that needs to happen these days.
You gotta be on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, newsletters, websites, you name it. That's actually the parts that I really like. I like the marketing pieces of things, so that's fun when I get some time , to spend doing that. And I'm grateful that I have a background that made it really easy for me to figure out how to navigate that world.
Robyn: And you were talking about the team that you've created and Karen and I from talking to you prior. We know the integrity that you have with your work and then what you expect of those who are around you, can you talk a bit about how you are committed to that type of integrity and what kind of offerings that you also have?
Heather: So we have a code of ethics that's really important to me.
As a [00:33:00] practitioner, I wanted to do more than just offer Tarot. I wanted to change how we view Tarot, at least within the world that I'm able to reach. There are so many different places where people go to, I call them the neon science, the people that are maybe not as genuine in intention, but they're accessible and they're everywhere.
So when people think of ta, they think of these types of people where they bring you in with this $25 reading, and then next thing you know, you find out that you're cursed. And it's gonna take a thousand dollars to take it off and it's just super, super shady. There's also this kind of wave of.
misdirection and misinformation on social media. Now, for most of us that operate in these worlds, we're finding this to be a really big problem that I'm hoping the social media networks will work on. But I've had people take my full name, my full married name and bait people for money online offering readings, and I don't solicit readings from people like we, We operate the same as a.
You can make an appointment and come in and see one of us. Our pricing is listed on our website, so there's no surprises. You know what you're [00:34:00] getting yourself into. We ask every single person when they come in to sign a note that says that they understand the limitations of what we can offer them. We can talk about all sorts of stuff, but if they have specifics around legal or health concerns that they should go to the appropriate professionals.
We've just established the expectations around what we can offer as practitioners. For me, it's so much more important that I shift this idea of what we've understood tarot to be from movies and from these neon signs to what it actually can be that. It's a safe tool that allows our intuition to surface whatever it is that we need to address.
And then hopefully if your practitioner is well trained, they then help you figure out what the next steps are. So for me, I do let people, tell me everything that they need to tell me, but we stop at a certain point and I redirect them to what it is that they can do next. It should be just as empowering for them to know what their next steps are and to feel that they have something that they can do and take, responsibility in some ways of what they can do to support themselves more so than just, me dictating certain things to them.
It's meant to be more of a [00:35:00] guided process, and honestly, that's why I use the word practitioner rather than. Reader says that you are in service too. You are just reading messages from something else, whereas practitioner is participation with the client as well. So you're getting their feedback.
They should be part of this process as you figure out what their next steps should look like and what they need to support themselves. Usually anytime that I've had any new , staff practitioner or any sort of coach or professional in here, I look for them to talk to me about the client.
If they start rattling off all the things they can do, that's wonderful. But if they don't talk to me about the client, then I know that they may need some help reframing that, but it's so important to us that we uphold these ethics. And they're clearly stated on our website they're, we constantly have to post about them and share them with people because we want people to feel safe in this environment.
And I think because of that, because we're able to support people, especially when they're most vulnerable I am very lucky that. We've created this really special space. In fact, we've had more than 50% of our clientele are people who have never had readings. So for me, that is so clear to me that people feel [00:36:00] safe enough.
They can come in here and they know what to expect. They can talk to us about it beforehand if they're not sure, if they wanna understand what kind of services we offer, what they should start with. But it's really impressive to me that we've had so many people that just feel comfortable enough, safe enough to walk through our doors and experience what we have to offer.
I'm very proud of that. my staff, my team is really proud of that too. We take really good care to support people when they're here. And for that, we've made it really important that we serve our community in that way. We're becoming this little staple over here, this place, this destination that people come outta state to see, which is really special to me.
Robyn: And let's say we're not in Connecticut, can you have some of these readings virtually.
Heather: Absolutely yes. So some of our practitioners don't do that service just because they don't feel comfortable doing that, and that's up to them. But yes for many of us, including myself, I do offer online readings.
I usually do it face to face so I can still see and experience that person a little bit. And yes, I do think it can be just as powerful even if the client isn't able to turn their own cards over, I always prefer in person, if you have the ability to come and actually visit us, I [00:37:00] always recommend that.
But yes, we do absolutely do online as well.
Karen: First of all, I just have to stop and just say that answer to that question about integrity I would love to make that the cornerstone of everyone's practice. Yes. Because the way you serve that up is so important, and it's what Robin and I talk about all the time, what we stand for, and all the people that we talk to, even on our podcast, we wanna make sure that they are on that same level because I think the world is so much in need of these services.
But you're right, so many people
Heather: who go
Karen: into these practices don't necessarily look at it from that perspective. They're just looking at it more as a business as opposed to this really important service when people, like you said are their most vulnerable. So thank you so much for that.
Heather. Can you talk about what a herbal TA reading experience is like with you and your team?
Heather: how does it all work together? Absolutely. Each of our readers has a different approach. Mine is specifically herbal Tarot. That's my specialty. So as I mentioned before that there are certain tarot decks that have [00:38:00] herbal alignments with each of the cards in the deck.
I personally feel that because I wanna be able to offer a tea or flower essence or something that you can have to take with you after you're reading, I've actually made it more of an intuitive practice. So while I'm sitting with you and I'm listening to everything that you're sharing with me, I'm usually taking notes.
I'm trying to figure out what it is that I think would best support you in that moment, energetically and spiritually. So even though there might be some cards that tie in and sometimes I will lean on the carts and the associations that were there. Intuitively, I know enough about the plants that there are just certain things that speak through that aren't associated with this, the decks that I actually use.
So then by the time we get to the end of your reading, I usually have determined whether or not I feel like it should be a tea or a flower essence that would support you best. I usually ask first, I don't assume that you won either . I ask first, and then depending on if you're okay with it, I then make the tea for you, or I make the flower essence for you to take with you later so that hopefully everything that we've talked about, everything that we've figured out would be your next steps in whatever it is that you're [00:39:00] going through.
You have a tool, you have an ally to support you beyond your reading, so you can take it every time that. You're thinking about some of the things we talked about, if you need support for at home, if you're just want a cup of tea while you talk to your partner about that stressful thing, or you need, the flower essence to support you because you have an exam and you're super stressed, whatever that happens to be.
There's a way for you take what we've talked about with you. it's very empowering, but we'll have this lasting effect beyond just, the hour or so that we sit. So I love that. I
Karen: love that because for, with Tarot, it's one of those experiences that can be hard to take with you or to have an action as a result of it may provide insight, but it might not necessarily give you something to do with the information that you received.
So I, I love that as an affirmation and a reminder
Robyn: and then you can incorporate and make it a ritual with what you take. And then as you just said, Karen, it is then that reminder on a daily basis of what those next steps should be. And we're all about the taking action.
you can get this information, but if you don't have something to do with it, it doesn't
Heather: matter, [00:40:00] That's spot on. It's not so much the knowledge, it's how do we then make changes in our behaviors and our patterns that allow us to move through these things and get what we needed to out of that situation.
So absolutely, a hundred percent. Wow.
Karen: And , Heather, do people typically come to you with an intention when they do a reading or or is it many people just come and just want the experience and do you have maybe just a thought on what is the best way to get a good reading?
Heather: I don't know there's necessarily a specific thing that you need to do to get your best reading. I find that there's a mix of things I usually preface everything by telling people that I believe we have free will, that you can take whatever resonate and leave, whatever doesn't.
And then I usually ask, Is there anything that you want me to focus on? You can tell me as little or as much as you'd like, because some people wanna just see what comes up. They wanna see what I can come up with without giving me any information. Totally fine that I'm prepared for that. However, some people wanna focus on something specific and because we have a certain amount of time together, I always wanna make sure that they get what they came for.
So if they wanna focus on their relationship and they wanna get right into that, then they usually just say, I wanna get right into my [00:41:00] relationship and we pull cards on that. This way I can. We can get to whatever it is that they wanna get to. I don't ever want anyone to leave the table feeling like, they didn't get anything out of it.
I've never so far, knock on wood, I've never had that experience happen. And I think it's just because, again, I'm setting the intention before we start about what they can expect to get out of it and I know where they wanna focus.
Robyn: Heather gave Karen and I a reading and it blew us away. So thank you. I know Karen had received a reading from you prior, but I hadn't, so I'm really grateful for your energy and your time in addition to telling us and everyone listening about your journey, about tea, about Tarot, about becoming an herbalist, enthusiast. And can you tell everyone about your offerings, Tea and Tarot boutique.com?
Heather: ? Absolutely. First of all, it's my pleasure. I'm so glad that I had time to read for both of you and hopefully there were some nuggets in there that will be helpful as you move forward. For me on our website boutique.com, we have an array of things.
I've [00:42:00] tried to make it easy so you can navigate it, but we offer a lot of our herbal products, which we make ourselves here. We also. Our classes and workshops as well as space where you can actually book a reading and you can see our full menu of all the things that we offer here within the shop.
I also have to point out too that I have a Tarot class called The Root of Tarot. It's an online class. It's a beginner course for someone who wants to just get started. I try to make it. Accessible and easy to dive into and to not feel that you have to memorize cards. I really don't like that approach to learning Tarot.
It's really how do you train your in intuition so that you can read cards without having to memorize it. So that class is there for beginners. And then in January I will be running a more in depth one where I talk a little bit deeper about each card. We talk about emotional imbalances of each card and what it can mean in your career, what it can mean in relationship readings, home readings, family readings, so on and so forth.
So we go deeper into each card, all the symbolism of them, how to read cards, how to tell the story that the cards are telling between each other, [00:43:00] and how to connect your intuition. So it's a deeper dive into it. It's an eight week long training where it's online, it's virtual, but it's live with me so that I can help you, guide you through it.
It's more of a mentorship. Oh, that sounds
Robyn: incredible. Yes, I recommend Perfect timing.
Heather: Check that out.
Robyn: And people can also follow you on your different social channels, which I'm sure they can find tea and Tarot boutique.com.
Heather: Yes, absolutely. We are consistently across all platforms , at the tea Tarot Witch.
So we have two, but , they go through there's two different channels. There's one that's focused on the shop, and that's t Tarot Boutique, and that's Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, et cetera. And then the other one, theteatarotwitch is me. So it's a little bit more about my personal approach to things.
I try to talk about what the Tarot cards mean, what the different herbs mean. I'm also on all those platforms, but it's a little bit more of a personal approach to it.
Robyn: Thank you for everything today. ,
Heather: This was, I so honored. Thank you so much for taking the time.
I'm intensely grateful that you found me. I'm so excited to see what the two of you build and put together everything that I know [00:44:00] so far about what you're working on. Sounds incredible. And I can't wait to see it manifest. I hope we can stay in touch and I can see this grow and develop into something bigger.
It's been such an honor. Thank you so much for reaching out to me and letting me have this moment to share this with you. Thank you.
Robyn: And believe me, we will be staying in touch because we see you being a part of what we're creating as well. So we are tremendously honored and grateful as
Great. Thank you so much. .
Karen: You just feel part of the soul family, Heather.