Monday, September 29, 2008

More Fall Decor & Tea Recipe

There is something about the colors of fall that makes me get excited about decorating the front entrance to our house. Pumpkins have appeared at roadside stands and at produce markets. GJ and AJ have a tradition of picking out and purchasing our pumpkins each year. They are the self-proclaimed jack-o-lantern artists in the family. As long as they want to do it, I am all for it!

Here is a recipe for Autumn Tea. I don't remember exactly where it came from. It has been in my computer files for a couple of years. I haven't yet tried it, but it is similar to a couple of hot tea punches I've had at events.

Autumn Tea
5 Tea Bags
5 Cups Boiling Water
5 cups unsweetened apple juice
2 cups cranberry juice
1/2 cup sugar (or more to taste)
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
A dash of cinnamon
Place the tea bags in a large heat-proof bowl. Add boiling water.Cover and steep for 8 minutes. Discard tea bags. Add the remaining ingredients; stir until sugar is dissolved. Serve warm or cold over ice. Yield 3 quarts.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Fall Door Decoration

Kentucky is one of the states in the USA that definitely has four seasons. Decorating with the seasons is fun. We have a narrow space between our storm door and front door. Many wreaths are too big to fit between the two doors, therefore it is a challenge at the change of the seasons to find a door decoration that works. A local shop had a fall open house a couple of weeks ago. I purchased this swag. I am very pleased it fits quite well without smashing the bow every time the door is closed. While I'm talking about my front door -- it has been different colors over the 20 years we have lived in our house. We had the exterior of the house painted this spring and I decided to go with a white door to match the trim of the house. But, a girl can always change my mind with a new coat of paint! *smile*

Friday, September 26, 2008

Collecting Tea Canisters

These tea canisters may never be used to store tea, but they sure look cute sitting on my tea shelf! This one says it all! "You can never have too many friends or cups of tea!" I received this as a gift from my "old" friend Jennifer. We went to 1st - 12th grades together in our little town. She is the librarian in AJ's school (yep, the same little school system) and I enjoy volunteering at the library.
The canister above has a primitive look, but I couldn't pass it up. After all, it has the word T-E-A on it!
I found this one in a shop sitting next to a matching coffee canister. We don't have coffee in our house. Fortunately they were priced separately, so I just grabbed this one!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Old Country Roses Teapot

This Royal Albert Old Country Roses teapot jumped into my cart at Home Goods. It's not made in England, but it is Old Country Roses, and it is Bone China, and it is beautiful, and the price was only $29.99.... As you can tell, it wasn't too difficult to talk myself into buying it!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Tea Time with the Berea Health Ministry Bracelet

I want to introduce my daughter Melissa as my guest blogger. After teaching high school for 11 years, she became a stay-at-home mom to our adorable grandson, Peyton, who was born in Guatemala. She developed her beading hobby into MJennings Designs. If you are a regular visitor to my blog, you saw a similar bracelet she designed as my 200th blog post giveaway. As I mentioned a few days ago, Melissa and I are volunteering to help the Berea Health Ministry Rural Health Clinic with a fund raiser tea.

This special "Tea Time" bracelet was designed exclusively for the Berea Health Ministry in celebration of their first fundraiser afternoon tea which will be held in Berea, KY on October 18, 2008. The Berea Health Ministry provides free medical care for people in Madison County as well as six surrounding counties who have no insurance but don't qualify for public assistance.
Because the Berea Health Ministry is a Christian organization, government funds are extremely limited. $5.00 from the sale of each exclusive bracelet will be donated directly to the Berea Health Ministry by MJennings Designs, LLC.
The bracelet is a treasured keepsake made of Swarovski crystals in black, red and crystal with sterling silver daisy spacer accents. It features a sterling silver "Tea Time" teapot charm and toggle clasp.The price for this piece is $25.00. $5.00 from each sale will be donated to the Berea Health Ministry.

It's Fall in Kentucky Y'all

Our local Chamber of Commerce started a program of selling fall decorations to businesses at a minimum price a few years ago. The city's beautification committee took over the program and now local fall decorating has really caught on!
Note the Kentucky-made yellow Corvette in the background matches quite nicely! A little trivia for you -- Corvettes are only manufactured in one location and that is Bowling Green, Kentucky. Stop by and visit the museum and tour the factory when you travel through the Bluegrass state.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Tea Print Bargain

I was walking through an antique mall/flea market in Richmond, KY yesterday looking for glassware for the upcoming fund raiser tea. I spotted this 22 1/2 by 27 inch framed Home Interiors print. I remember when a tea friend had a Home Interiors party a few years ago just to get this print. I thought it was "ok" at the time. I don't remember the original price, but vaguely recall it being rather expensive.
I recognized it as the same print, walked over to where it was hanging on the wall to look at the price. It was marked $12. It was another one of those "I don't need it, but I gotta have it" moments. How could I possibly pass up a framed and matted tea print for only $12?!?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Vintage Japanese Lusterware Tea Set

This is a vintage Japanese Lustreware tea set found at a flea market by a friend. Isn't it nice to have friends who think of you when they are out and about?

"Each cup of tea represents an imaginary voyage." ~ Catherine Douzel

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Tea Table Themes

My daughter, Melissa, and I have been calling each other and emailing photos back and forth about our table themes for "Tea Time with the Berea Health Ministry" fund raiser tea. It will be a table-hosted afternoon tea where each table is decorated by a hostess using her china and decorations to the theme of her choice. I have judges who will award a prize to the winning table. Melissa and I are not in the competition, but our tables will, in my opinion, be of competition quality! Ladies in our town are buzzing about, working on their secret themes and table decor. The teapot in the photo is a hint about my table theme. I purchased this little James Sadler teapot in England in 2002. We were there during the Queen's Golden Jubilee celebration. Can you guess my theme? More photos of my table decor will be coming...

Isn't it fun to play "tea party" with your friends?!?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Afternoon Tea Menu Planning

October 18th is the date of the Berea Health Ministry fund raiser tea I'm helping with. The committee met last night and it appears we may have 200 guests! The menu is planned after searching through my many tea recipe books. I enjoy collecting recipe books from tea rooms we visit. Some of those books are displayed in a basket in my dining room. I long ago ran out of shelf space for my many recipe books!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Aynsley Teacup & Saucer Trio

I found three of these Aynsley Trios and a matching cake plate in a junk shop in a little village in England. I haven't been able to locate the name of the pattern. Does anyone know what it is? I just love the design and the colors.

Another entry from 365 Things Every Tea Lover Should Know ~
When sipping tea at the table, you don't need to pick up your saucer with the cup.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Every Tea Lover Should Know....

365 Things Every Tea Lover Should Know is a small paperback book by Harvest House Publishers. It is full of little snippets of tea stories and poems, practical tips and historical facts. There are also a few recipes, serving suggestions, inspirational thoughts and quotes on tea. The book easily fits in my purse for quick reading I find myself spending a lot of time waiting in doctor's offices, the school parking lot and other places like most of us do.

These are a few entries from the book:
1. When making a great pot of tea, pour hot water into the teapot to warm it while the kettle of water id heating.
21. The legend of tea's origin is that it was discovered by Chinese Emperor Shen Nung in 2737 BC, when a leaf accidentally fell into a bowl of hot water.
103. Earl Grey tea is named after a 19th century British diplomat to China who enjoyed this tea blend that eventually would bear his name.
211. Ceylon tea is black tea grown in Sri Lanka, which was known as Ceylon before 1972.
346. "The tea party is a spa for the soul. You leave your cares and work behind. Busy people forget their business. Your stress melts away, your senses awaken." ~ Alexandra Stoddard

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Gathering Teapots

I went through the check-out line of Home Goods on Saturday with five teapot for $9.99 each. *Big Smile* The clerk was a bit puzzled and curious about why I would buy 5 teapots at one time and finally asked if they were for gifts. "No, they're for me." I answered. Actually, I'm gathering inexpensive teapots for a fund raiser tea scheduled for October 18th. I've been immersed in menu and detail planning with a committee of friends who are wonderful Christian ladies but don't know diddly squat about tea!!! I told them so and gave them a mini lesson at the last meeting.
Thanks to my good tea friends who have experience in table hosted fund raiser teas, I think we finally have the plans ready. I'll be taking lots of photos and keep you posted on the details. In the meantime, if you want to see an absolutely fabulous slide show of a table hosted fundraiser tea in South Carolina, visit Denise at Uniquely Tea and scroll down a few posts.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Ready for Christmas Tea

My best tea friend, Mary, gave me twelve Christmas goblets (like the one shown in these photos), eight matching sherbets and glass mugs. A number of years ago they were promotional glassware from Arby's. They belonged to Mary's mother, a dear lady who lives in a nursing home. Mary and I have known each other for nearly 40 years. Several years ago, after both our mothers were diagnosed with Alzheimer's we became a mini support group. I could feel Mary's pain when she cleaned out and disposed of her mother's "treasures." I have been through that difficult process. I am honored that I will be able to use Miss Laura's treasured glassware at our annual family Christmas Tea.

Soccer Team in the Hot Tub

6 soccer team members and 2 little brothers "relaxed" in the hot tub after winning their game on Sunday afternoon. They are 4 - 0 for the season. Go Stingrays!

Monday, September 8, 2008

And the Winner Is....

Congratulations to Phyllis in MI for winning this special Tea Time bracelet giveaway celebrating my 200th post! Phyllis, I sent you and email for your wrist measurement. Melissa will size the bracelet and we will send it to you!

A special thank you to everyone who made so many lovely comments regarding the bracelet and my Friendship Tea blog! I appreciate the "friends" I've made through this fun blog journey and I look forward to many more posts!

AJ drew the winner last night, but wouldn't let me take his photo as he was already dressed in his pajamas. I already embarrassed him once yesterday when I walked out on the soccer field during practice. It appears my 4th grade boy is noticing girls, whether I am ready or not!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Buckingham Palace Imprerial Crown Tea

When the Old Durham Road English Country Living catalog arrives in my mail box, this Anglophile can hardly wait to peek inside! I like to make myself a cup of tea, sip and enjoy it page by page.
According to the catalog, the Buckingham Palace Imperial Crown Tea and Biscuts are exclusive to Durham Road. Apparently there are two ways to purchase the beautiful tin of tea shown in my bottom photo. You may visit one of the Royal Palace gift shops, as I did this summer when we visited Windsor Castle and Balmoral, or order it from this catalog. Don't tell my husband he could have saved BIG travel bucks by ordering the tea from this American catalog!!!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

"Tea Time" Bracelet Giveaway!

I am celebrating my 200th blog post with a giveaway! I asked my tea buddy and daughter, Melissa, to design a "Tea Time" bracelet for my first Blog Giveaway. Melissa will custom fit this special bracelet to fit the winner's wrist size. You can see Melissa's beautiful personalized custom beading at MJenningsDesigns blog here and on her website here.

When I began blogging Friendship Tea in January, I had no idea where or how far I would be able to go with it or how much time I would be able to spend on it. I very much appreciate the encouragement of my friends and visitors. And, I very much appreciate comments. If you are a regular visitor, you know that Friendship Tea is about the adventures of my family, enjoying time with friends, life in Kentucky and my passion for tea, the beverage, and tea, the ceremony.

Leave a comment between now and 9 pm Sunday to enter this giveaway! I will announce the winner Monday morning. The "Tea Time" bracelet will be shipped as soon as I receive the correct sizing from the winner and Melissa finishes it. Thanks for participating!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Boys at Breakfast

The #1 daughter and 3 year old, PJ drove an hour south and GJ, AJ and I drove an hour north on I-75 Monday morning to meet for breakfast at Cracker Barrel in Georgetown, KY. The 3 year old adores 9 year old AJ and mimics everything he does as you can see in these photos.
PJ went to his first day of pre-school today. You can see his exciting day here.

Lunch at the Candleberry's Tea Room

Our visit to Frankfort for our family would not have been complete without lunch at one of the local tea rooms. We had lunch and tea at Candleberry's Tea Room.
GJ and I each ordered the Candleberry's Sampler with tomato soup, a scoop of chicken salad and a slice of the quiche of the day, bacon quiche.
AJ ordered the chicken salad plate with veggies and ranch dip and a choice of a muffin. He chose the chocolate chip muffin. Without looking at the tea menu, he ordered Earl Grey decaf tea but they didn't have it therefore he ordered English Breakfast was his second choice. This 9 year old Kentucky boy always receives interesting looks from servers when he places his tea order.
We sampled the desserts but I neglected to take photos. Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce for me, Cherry Cobbler for GJ and Coconut Cream Pie for AJ. Then on to the gift shop before departure.
Miss Ramey's, above, was my first tea room choice but a hand-written sign on the door indicated they were closed for Labor Day weekend. I've had lunch here many times over the years while in Frankfort on toursim business. Located in different areas of Frankfort, both of these tearooms serve afternoon tea with advance reservations but the bulk of their business is for lunch.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Visiting the Kentucky Capitol

This is the floral clock behind the on the Kentucky Capitol grounds. We are experiencing hot and dry conditions this year but not anything like last year's serious drought. this clock was built in 1961 with financial help of the Garden Clubs of Kentucky. The clock is 34 feet across. Can you tell the hands are painted Kentucky Blue?
The Governor's Mansion is also located on the Capitol grounds. This building opened in 1914
This cabinet is one of four and is my favorite exhibit in the Capitol. It is a display of Kentucky First Ladies in miniature. This is a project of the Kentucky Federation of Women's Clubs.
This needlepoint wall hanging has a square representing each of the 120 Kentucky counties.
The marble grand staircase is reminiscent of the one in the Paris Opera House. There are murals at both ends of the building depicting Daniel Boone at significant times in Kentucky history.
I hope you have enjoyed this little tour of our beautiful Kentucky Capitol with our family and the Kentucky history lesson with AJ, our 4th grader.

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