Fengqing Dragon Pearl Black Tea

Tea type
Black Tea
Black Tea Leaves
Jasmine, Chocolate, Leather, Toffee, Dark Chocolate, Wood, Berries, Cocoa, Dried Fruit, Honey, Malt, Strawberry, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes, Autumn Leaf Pile, Bread, Fruity, Mineral, Floral, Smoke, Raisins, Wet Wood, Wet wood, Brown Sugar, Molasses, Musty, Spices, Thick, Creamy, Milk Chocolate, Thin, Burnt Sugar, Earth, Toast, Smooth, Apricot, Earthy, Stonefruit, Wheat, Woody, Wet Earth
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Edit tea info Last updated by SimplyJenW
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 24 oz / 708 ml

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313 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I used 4 “balls”. and eventho the product description says ‘slight chocolate’ I picked up a whole bunch of chocolate-malty-goodness in this! Incredible! I’m going to do another infusion after this...” Read full tasting note
  • “After having Loaded Baked Potato Soup, I served Italian Cream Cake. I didn’t make it! A friend sent it to me and it came from Sam’s club and was delicious! The frosting tastes a lot like the...” Read full tasting note
  • “another tea from this morning. the world has distracted me today. :) However, i am looking forward to sipdown saturday! and sample sunday! woot woot!” Read full tasting note
  • “I went on a casual date last night. The guy messaged me afterward, and this morning I sent the “hey-I’m-not-really-into-dating-right-now-but-thanks-for-meeting-me” reply. Which shouldn’t sound like...” Read full tasting note

From Teavivre

Origin: Fengqing, Yunnan, China

Ingredients: The leaves come from wild tea trees

Taste: Taste sweet and smooth, with a slight flavor of chocolate

Brew: 3-4 pieces for 8oz of water. Brew at 212 ºF (100 ºC) for 1 to 2 minutes (exact time depends on your taste – a longer time will give the tea a stronger taste and color)

Health Benefits: Being a fully oxidised – or fermented – black tea, it does not have the same level of antioxidants that our White and Green teas have, however it is still a good source of these and so will also help reduce the risk of cancers and lessen the affects of aging. Black teas such as our Fengqing black also are considered to help prevent tooth decay and help lower your cholesterol levels.

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313 Tasting Notes

6768 tasting notes

I used 4 “balls”. and eventho the product description says ‘slight chocolate’ I picked up a whole bunch of chocolate-malty-goodness in this! Incredible!

I’m going to do another infusion after this as well.

This is just what I need at the moment, just want I crave! I really like this! A LOT!


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3311 tasting notes

After having Loaded Baked Potato Soup, I served Italian Cream Cake. I didn’t make it! A friend sent it to me and it came from Sam’s club and was delicious! The frosting tastes a lot like the Bavarian Cream matcha from Red Leaf, but there is also coconut and that adds a lot to this cake.

It is extremely rich, however, too rich for me unless I scrape off a lot of the frosting. I felt that it required a black tea with a lot of presence to pair with it.

I love this tea! I don’t know how to describe it accurately because there is an unusual texture or something that I only know how to describe as…cocoa powdery, and I don’t mean just the flavor of cocoa powder but even a dryness at the same time it was wet. It is not, however, the dryness associated with astringency. I do not find this tea to be astringent at all!

When I drink it, it FEELS dark and rich. Imagine if you put a tiny bit of cocoa powder on your tongue, unsweetened, and it wasn’t bitter at all. It is not a heavy bodied tea, but rather it seems to hang on to my tongue for a moment before I swallow. This is what made me feel it would go well with that rich cake. Again, it needs no milk or sugar, which was critical since this cake is so rich and sweet.

I think it paired very nicely, but it is also wonderful on its own and is great for gong fu sessions, too.

Hesper June

Oh! Baked Potato Soup and Italian Cream Cake! Yummy!


Mail me your leftovers :)


Why is it, I’m allergic to healthy things like potato and beans but not cake?! OK gimmie the cake!


I can imagine how something dark and rich could nicely offset an overly sweet cake. Sounds good.

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15139 tasting notes

another tea from this morning. the world has distracted me today. :) However, i am looking forward to sipdown saturday! and sample sunday! woot woot!


I love the idea of Sipdown Saturday haha. Muchly needed. And I LOVE this tea. :D


Oh, I totally need to rock some Sipdown Saturday! :D


i have a bunch of samples i think? i can finish in one cup….but then i have a TON of samples that i haven’t tried that will take a few cups. so i’m hoping i can use sat and sun to do that since there are 15 teas in bound to me…no way i’m hitting 150 this month with all the travelling.

Terri HarpLady

I wish I had time for a sipdown Saturday or Sunday this weekend, cuz I have SO many samples & such. Maybe I’ll make this coming week a sipdown extravaganza :)


I’m going to try and get through as many as i can…since i suspect there will be tea buying in the very near future…

Terri HarpLady

:) there always is…


i’m looking at verdant, herbal infusions and river tea at the moment…plus since we’ll be going to florida in february, i’m likely planning an order from at least one place that i can ick up while there (H&S? S&V? Adagio?) AND if i get any free time in chicago this week, i’ll be stopping by adagio and tea gschwender…so team might be picked up there…

Terri HarpLady

I placed my Verdant Birthday order yesterday…just sayin’…

Terri HarpLady

So…where in FL are you guys going?


Always Orlando :) “family” is there

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336 tasting notes

I went on a casual date last night. The guy messaged me afterward, and this morning I sent the “hey-I’m-not-really-into-dating-right-now-but-thanks-for-meeting-me” reply. Which shouldn’t sound like a big deal, but these kinds of things (possibly hurting someone’s feelings and/or making them upset) drive my anxiety THROUGH THE ROOF! Why am I so bad at handling these things? Sometimes I wish I was the kind of person who just… didn’t give a damn about what other people think.

…Sorry for the rant. I’m stressed and I don’t feel like I should be stressed and somehow that’s making it worse. Mmmm guilt complex.

So I’m drinking my comfort tea. I used 3 pearls per cup, which I’ve found is my happy place. I keep trying to find other chocolatey/malty teas, and there are some reeeeeeally really good ones out there, but somehow, it all comes back to this. I wonder if that’s because this is the first tea of its kind that I tried? It’s just so… perfect. Until I drank it, I doubted it was even possible to have a tea that smelled so much like real cocoa. (Cacao?)

Also, I would like to point out that I got mad that Steepster ate my note – and then I opened my other window and realized I hadn’t published it yet. I am so smart! I am so smart! S-M-R-T! I mean S-M-A-R-T!


I haven’t dated since I broke up with my ex-fiance 3 years ago.I’m ready to date but fr the exact same reasons you described above, I kind of have avoided it. You’re braver than me just for getting out there on a date!

Terri HarpLady

I’m SO grateful to be out of the dating pool! After my divorce I spent 4 years only dating myself, LOL. It was good for me to sort of fall in love with myself, figure out what I really wanted & liked, & when I started dating men again I made a promise to me that I would not become a reflection of whoever I was with, & that I would stay true to me. It’s better to be alone & happy, than to cave in. People tend to go into an avoidance pattern because they don’t want to hurt the other person’s feelings, but Being straightforward & honest is the best thing you can do. Coming right out & saying thanks, but no thanks, frees the other person from wondering & frees you from anxiety.


I get this. Balancing appropriate levels of compromise with a steadfast commitment to “being true to yourself” is so difficult at the best of times.


I get like that in general because I care too much about what other people think, but I think you just need to put yourself first.


I really appreciate your guys’ comments; I feel much more encouraged and it’s good to know I’m not the only one who feels this way!

@Terri HarpLady – That’s exactly why I’m calling it off now rather than farther down the line! I tend to get incredibly stressed out whenever I start trying to date, and I’ve decided that until I find someone I really want to be with, I’d rather be single. I get angsty about not having that fairytale romance you hear about all the time, but at the end of the day, I prefer having me to myself. : )

Terri HarpLady

Yup! When me, myself, & I were dating we did whatever ‘we’ wanted to do. Before that, I always gave myself away in relationships. Somewhere I read the saying,“I’m not looking for the right person, I’m becoming the right person.” I made a list of all the qualities I wanted in a partner, then I worked on embodying all those qualities myself, being that person for myself. Once I started dating again, if it didn’t work out for me, I asked myself why, which helped redefine the ‘list’. I pretty much concluded that I’d rather be alone. Then I met Tony. We’ve been together 13+ years. We still each live in our own houses, LOL, he pretty much did the same thing I did, so we each like spending lots of time alone, but luckily we also like spending time together! :)


You found Earl Grey Creams and Dragon Pearls around the same time? Nice! Those are my two favorites!


Terri, I’ve never met you in person, but just from reading your writings on Steepster I have to admit I find myself kind of looking up to you. You seem like an awesome person and I just really like your way of viewing the world.

@Tea Sipper – actually, I’ve been a fan of the Dragon Pearls for a few months now, but those are my two favorites as well! They’re the two teas that I started craving after finishing one cup. :D

Terri HarpLady

Wow, thanks! :)
I just like to enjoy the bliss of the moment, if you know what I mean, & I do my best to avoid misery, LOL.


So even though this post was 6 months ago – I needed to comment on a couple of things: 1. I think I probably NEED this tea and 2. LADIES – this discussion is so resonant. Terri, I admire anyone who is at home in theirself as you seem to be (awe inspiring grammar what?) and TeaKlutz, I like the way you write. Being your authentic self is hard sometimes but the rewards are worth it. I liked reading this post and the comments. Thanks.


MzPriss – 1) You do NEED this tea. It is killer diller. 2) I’m flattered, and I’m glad you found truth and resonance in this discussion. The comments on this post helped me a LOT. :D


I just ordered a tin of this.

Terri HarpLady

(just smiling & waving at everybody)

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2201 tasting notes

I was excited when Angel said this one would be in my next round of samples because I’ve never had a black pearl tea before, but (not to sound like a broken record), since I am getting into Chinese black teas lately I really wanted to try them.

The pearls are so big! Compared to jasmine pearls, that is. They dark with lots of golden streaks and they smell kind of molasses-grainy, but also like hay. I kind of used my perfect teaspoon to dish them out (3 per scoop!) and ended up with 5 pearls for my 12 oz mug, which seems to be similar to what others have used and is in the middle of Teavivre’s brewing recommendations.

My pearls pretty much completely unraveled after two minutes, which I didn’t really expect! Brewed, I smell toasted semi-sweet chocolate, like when there are chocolate chips on the bottom or edge of the chocolate chip cookie and they get a tiny bit burnt. And maybe there’s a bit of that hay in the steeped aroma, too. I am sipping it while it is still too hot for me to taste much of the tea itself, but there is an incredible sweet aftertaste to it. Cooling, cooling… I just can’t help but keep coming back to it before it’s cool enough. Now I’m getting definite sweet chocolate flavors, actually incredibly sweet, which is funny because as I have been smelling the steeped tea I have decided it doesn’t smell sweet at all. But it tastes very sweet, and honeyed, which I love. There’s some other note there coming out now that seems familiar but I can’t place. There’s almost a savory note underneath the sweet note, oddly enough, and it works well.

Love it, love it, love it. I also love that I know that Teavivre has such great prices and quality that I don’t need to shop around for other black pearls. In the end this would probably just be my favorite anyway. Thanks so much for the sample, Angel!

Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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1598 tasting notes

My first tea of the day!

Everyone else is sleeping so I’m sitting with the baby watching the LAST episode of Downton Abbey and drinking dragon pearls. I still haven’t had my dragon pearl-off, but someday!

I have a feeling that I’ll need a comfort tea afterwards from what I’ve heard. :( 15 minutes to go, and I’m waiting for hell to break loose.

God, I love some of these characters so much. Even Mary, even though she’s so complicated. And stubborn.

Terri HarpLady

I have yet to watch a single episode of this show. Maybe when winter comes & there is snow I’ll make tony a decadent breakfast & talk him into spending a day on the couch in PJs, watching every episode of the first season. Cuz that’s how we roll!


yes terri! yes!


Let me know when you do have a dragon pearl-off since I’d love to follow along. One of these days I want to have one of my own. Lol.


Terri – that sounds really awesome. :) I love devouring an entire episode at once.

I just realized that Season 4 starts to air today which is a relief because I don’t like how the last ep ended and need something else. But now I’m stuck waiting for each episode like regular people. :P I hate being caught up.

And will do, Shadowfall!

Terri HarpLady

Maybe I’ll join you guys on the pearl-off as well!


Most vendors’ dragon pearls are actually literally the same tea. No matter the retailer, 99% these things on the market are all made by Feng Qing Tea Factory in Yunnan China (the Feng Qing in the name), any minor differences you pick out will just be batch to batch variations, so get them wherever they’re cheapest.


Really? I didn’t realize that! Maybe I’ll do a visual/smell test first to see if I can see any difference before I brew up a buttload of tea.


Sansnipple – I didn’t realize that either. Kinda takes the fun out of it. Lol!

Terri HarpLady

I know they aren’t all exactly the same. Mandala’s pearls definitely taste & look different from thepuritea’s, for example.


Mandala’s aren’t the same as these either.


Hmmm… I always thought the Adagio and Zen Tea pearls were not as good quality as the others ones I’ve had too. I should go through and see how many types of pearls I have!


Cavo – i JUST found out the season started again tonight… heh so excited but yes… waiting sucks..that’s why i have like 10 shows i watch at the same time..gives me time to get a few episodes ready for when i want to do mini sessions of the show haha


I’m happy you watch it too! I don’t know anyone else that does and I might need to vent or cheer or something!

We usually just blitz through seasons after they’ve all aired but Joe isn’t into this so I can actually keep up.


I do love this tea. One of these days I will place an order for some.


I watched the first couple of eps at a friend’s house who had netflix, but now I am not sure the best source at home to watch with. I don’t have netflix at home.


It must have been American Netflix because I don’t see it on mine. I end up downloading the episodes, or borrowing the dvd’s from the library.

Terri HarpLady

Seems like they’d make Netflix the same for everyone… :/


I think it’s to do with different regulations and licensing. Some of the Canadian broadcasters have rights to show movies/shows in Canada, and don’t want to sell/share it well Netflix. Red tape and bureaucracy are part of the problem, I imagine.

So our selection is much smaller than yours, but for some reason we get the odd show that you guys don’t get in the US. I think we had Walking Dead far sooner than you guys did, as an example. A lot of people I know us IP blockers or something to get US netflix, but I just haven’t bothered to figure it out for my PS3 yet.


i download my tv shows 100% legally….cough


Yes, it was in LA when I was at the Gallifrey One con and I was at my friend’s house alone for a bit.

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1184 tasting notes

Very much looking forward to this sample! Thankyou Angel and Teavivre for this generous sample

I used 4 pearls
Dry smell: like smoky hot chocolate
Appearance: golden amber
Smell wet leaf: almost like a malty milkshake

Taste: Delicious, malty, slightly sweet, smooth. Cocoa notes.
It leaves a wonderfully warm and comforting feeling throughout my body.
Delicious to have that cocoa taste but tastes so natural

2nd steep 1.5min—slight astringency in the aftertaste

I would re-steep some more but it is getting late in the day, I will have to save the leaf for tomorrow morning.

Edit: 3rd steeping from last night’s leaves, 3 minutes. This tea is starting to lose it’s sweetness a little bit but it is still delicious.

I would do more steepings, but I have so many other teas left to review!

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I ordered this tea…so cocoa-eeee good!


I… think I just received this one! Need to try ASAP!


I have noticed that people who use 3 pearls are not happy with the results so no skimping…and I used 5 and loved it! 4 seemed to have worked fine for you. I ordered this because it was the most cocoa tea I’ve found to date in the milk chocolate range.


I loved this one, so I bought some too. I use 4 or 5 pearls in a 200ml mug. Seems to give it a nice cocoa kick.


4 seemed to work but I think I will try 5 after hearing so many other people using 5!


I will have to add this tea to my next order! I will drink anything malty and chocolate-y :)

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6107 tasting notes

Oh man. I can’t even write a proper tasting note right now because I totally just asked out a guy that I met yesterday, and am pretty much freaking out about it… (Mostly that he won’t respond… but also that he will…. gah!!) This is new territory for me…

So, uh, anyhow…. I really think I should have stuck to a rooibos/herbal tonight since I’m already really wound up, but I had brought this tea and my sample of Bailin Gong Fu Black downstairs on Friday night to try, but didn’t get around to it, and really wanted to experience the chocolatiness that everyone else has been! Thank you to Teavivre for the opportunity to taste and review this tea!

I used 5 pearls in my infuser, and the temperature probably wasn’t as close to boiling as it should have been, but oh well. The aroma when I cut open the packet was incredibly chocolatey and delicious – kind of crazy (hey, matches my mood!)

The tea tastes malty and chocolatey, perhaps a little less chocolatey than expected, but still quite good. I’m getting almost a yeasty-ish, bready note that I don’t remember finding quite as strong in Verdant’s chocolatey blacks, but it’s not bothersome. The tea is a little weak though, in my opinion, and I’m not sure if that’s because I should have steeped it longer (I went with three minutes), used more pearls, or because I added a bit of cold water after it was done steeping to cool it down a bit so I could drink it sooner (I should say here that I steeped it in less than 8 oz. water to begin with by accident, and the addition wouldn’t have put it over that). I’d be very curious to compare it directly to the Laoshan Black, but I only have a cup’s worth of that one left and don’t want to waste it on a night of comparisons.

… (I so don’t even know what to do with myself right now!)

ETA: This tea held up to a second infusion quite well! Still chocolatey and pleasing. I’m not sure how long I steeped it, but it could have been slightly too long, as there’s a bit of astringency. Still good though.

ETA again: Third infusion, a couple(?) days later, still has enough flavour to be enjoyable, although I do admit I steeped it in a smaller volume of water. I can’t recall now if I went for 3 or 4 minutes, but there’s no astringency this time, just maltiness with flourishes of cocoa every now and again. Really quite pleasant. This tea has definitely made the short-list for teas to buy when my stash is a bit smaller! (And I haven’t checked the price, but I think it is affordable?)

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

This will be on my next Teavivre order!


I hope he responds soon!

Dylan Oxford

Good luck :)




Holding my breath for you! :P


Sigh, totally shut down… Not that I really expected any different! C’est la vie.


aw boo! oh well it’s better to know than not :)


His loss!



Scott B

I use 6 pearls of this in an 8-10 ounce cup. Teavivre recommends 3-4, but I don’t think that is enough.
I like to put the pearls straight into the bottom of my glass cup to watch them unfurl, then pour the tea through the strainer into another cup for drinking.


aww I was going to wish you good luck until I read all the comments. Better luck next time. :D


Thanks for the support, guys :D He was just too damn perfect, I knew I didn’t stand a chance!

@Scott – I will try 6 pearls next time (I assume I have that many left). It seems that I only found the first infusion a touch weak though, so we’ll see what sort of difference one more pearl makes!


Aww Krystaleyn – no one is perfect. And never think someone is better than you, as they might then start believing it themselves and then you won’t stand a chance. You are a strong, beautiful woman who deserves the best. He just didn’t know what he was missing out on.. or maybe it was just bad timing. Either way, ever beat yourself up about it. You were so brave! Way more than I have ever been. I am so proud of you tea buddy! :D


Oh… he is so perfect though! (I am hoping to find fault with him soon so my heart will be free again, hahahaha!) He was incredibly nice and honest about everything… yeah. I’m glad I tried :) Even though I feel like an idiot :D


His fault is that he has terrible taste in women. ;)


Just look at him and think…ASPARAGAS!
I would have taken all the pearls and OD’s on all of them at once after that! Death by chocolate tea pearls! Drowning…

Listen, my ex-husband was gorgeous…when we married…women used to come up to me and ask me how I got him. Flirt in front of me and come right up and get in between… Disgusting! (He always just smiled…he had been a football star!) When he had a heart attack, I was there. I cared for him. When I got sick, he dumped me! Give me an average guy who loves me and not just himself any day!


Ahaha, seriously guys, he is so ridiculously nice (I’m trying to make that into a fault… who wants to date a guy and always be the meaner one of the two?!) He actually let me down very easily, and just said that he hadn’t felt a “spark”, but thinks it would be fun to hang out. The girl that lands him is going to be very lucky.

Bonnie – had I still been drinking the pearls when I got his message, I probably would have drank them a little crazily :P Your ex-husband sounds like a jerk… pretty sure wedding vows include ‘in sickness and in health’. :(


Good luck, Kitenna. You sound very nice yourself. The right guy will find you (or vice versa). Hang in there.


Thanks Stoo :) Hoping for the best!!

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709 tasting notes

Holy Hannah, these are huge. I expected pearls, not marbles – and I am in love. Taste and smell aside, these things are beautiful. I requested a sample of these a few months back and Teavivre graciously obliged…then they somehow ended up in a strange place and never got used. My bad. Teavivre, thanks again for the sample – I’m so in love with the look that as long as they taste halfway decent, I’ll be ordering more (and some Bailin Gongfu!).

I used 4 marbles and steeped them in nearly boiling water for 3 minutes (my standard black tea steep setup). The liquor is amber, but lighter than many black teas. The aroma is bold, reminds me of cigarettes/cigars. Typically that would be unpleasant, but this isn’t. It’s like the sweetness of tobacco mixed with something musty and rich. Old leather? There’s a hint of “ashtray” which I don’t like, but hopefully that’s just a smell.

First sips are rich, very rich. Like very dark chocolate, sans sweetness. There is a smokiness in the taste which probably explains the “ashtray” aroma I was getting earlier. It is mild, but very there. Reminiscent of a campfire with dark chocolate smores. Now, typically I don’t enjoy smoke or dark chocolate, but this is working for me. It’s very smooth, there is no bitterness, nothing with bite. It is very different from other black teas I’ve tried, but I think this is something I want in my cupboard. I don’t think of it as an every day tea, but I could totally get a hankering for this.

I’ll need to try it a few more times (and get the beau’s opinion too) but I think this is definitely something I should order. I’m running low on good plain black tea, so I should stock up. Right?! : )


I ordered these weeks ago, and my last two Teavivre orders have been hung up in Hangzhou for weeks now. I WANT MY DRAGON PEARLS!!!!! (a la five year old kicking and screaming on floor). All other Teavivre orders have come in about seven days.

Yogini Undefined

Ooh I’m so glad you reviewed these today, as I have some as well that I’m wanting to try, but I wasn’t sure how to brew them. I got confused on the tea vivre site that said 10 pearls for an 8oz teapot, but that didn’t seem right. These pearls are MASSIVE! Would you add anything to this tea or drink it straight? I nearly always add stuff to my blacks, but I usually try a sip of it prior to adding anything just to see.


I never add anything, so my opinion isn’t that useful. I don’t like to cover up the tea unless I’ve screwed it up or it’s poor quality. It is very hearty though, I think it could handle additions if that’s what you like – it’s all about your tastes!


Agree! I usually do ~4-5 pearls for a 12oz tumblr, or ~3-4 for my 4oz tasting set. I agree, this tea is bold enough to take additions, but even though I can be kind of iffy on strong blacks, this one is smooth enough to go without.

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1379 tasting notes

I haven’t had any of these pearls in a while and my first sip is of nothing but regression. How could I ever forget my beloved Fengqing Dragon Pearls? Well I just finished off last nights Chinese dinner of noodles and mushrooms in Chinese curry sauce for lunch and this tea went amazingly well with it.

Now I have 24 orders to make and gather after the long weekend and bank holiday. Gives me time to catch up with Glee :)


woah 24 orders…

Terri HarpLady

That’s awesome Kitty! Glad to hear business is good!
I checked out your jewelry page, & although I don’t wear jewelry (due to my skin reacting to most metals, followed by my crazy long hair getting tangled in everything), it was fun to peek around at your stuff! You have some really cute things on there!

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