Friday, May 29, 2009

"English Blend" and It's Not Tea

"English Blend" sounds like a tea, but it is the name of the brick closest to our original brick to put on the house addition. My hubby, Glenn, said he knows I will never complain about it because of it's name! He is right. I love everything English and I love tea. How could we possibly go wrong with English Blend?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Another "Treasure"

This is another dish I had to pack away during the renovation of our house. This plate was a gift for my mother from my brother and me. In the early 1960's I remember our dad giving us money to buy a gift for Mother's Day or for Mom's birthday. I can't remember which because both were in May. My brother and I walked to the only antique shop in town and picked out this plate. Of course my mother claimed that she was thrilled with it. She displayed it for the rest of her lifetime. She really did appreciate pretty things, so I hope she did like this one.

As I look at it now, I see it is marked J P L France. It is hand painted and signed J. N. '93. Could it have been painted in 1893? I have no idea, but it is a pretty plate.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Packing Up Treasures

I have many beautiful pieces of china and glassware given to me by my mother and aunts over the years.
All must be packed away due to the the renovation and extension of our house.

These are just a few beautiful pieces.

So many "treasures" and so many wonderful memories.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend Fun

Kentucky temperatures have been in the 80's this weekend. The children of all ages were in the pool as much as possible. Our weather has been very nice except for rain showers earlier today with extreme high humidity. Austin is back in the pool for the moment, but not for long... We have school tomorrow! We had so many snow/ice days earlier in the year, that the school year has been extended to June 4th.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Tea Time With Berea Health Ministry

Earlier this week, we had our first planning meeting for the Berea Health Ministry 2009 fundraiser tea to be held on October 17. The event is a hosted-table event. Each hostess decorates her table to a theme of her choice. These are a few photos from the 2008 Tea Time With Berea Health Ministry.

I opened a simple new blog with photos from the 2008 event so potential hostesses can visit it to see examples of last year's lovely tables and learn details of the event. Go here to visit the Tea Time With Berea Health Ministry blog. I will be posting more information there as needed.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

National Home Remodeling Month

Back view (above)
Front side view (below)
May is National Home Remodeling Month and we certainly are contributing our fair share to the program!
"Before" photos above with "during" photos below.

We are so happy to see the leaking chimney come down!! We have lived in this house 21 years and have spent big bucks on repairs but the problems always returned.

Back addition 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and laundry room (below)
Thank you to many of you who have asked how things are going.
We don't have an estimated time for completion. And, as so often happens in projects like this, we have made a few changes. It is the "while they are here, we should have them do this project, too" concept. *BIG smile*
P.S. - I apologize for not keeping up with my daily blogging posts but things are a bit crazy around here right now.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Apron Stories

The Apron Book *Making, Wearing, and Sharing a Bit of Cloth and Comfort* by EllynAnne Geisel is a great resource book for those of us who have a fascination for vintage aprons. Why would anyone be fascinated with aprons, perhaps even to the point of having a passion for aprons? Because just like people, every apron has a story.
My mother and Aunt Mary wore aprons called half aprons or waist aprons every day while cooking or cleaning house. They always had pockets as the green one above.

Most ladies I knew made their aprons. Rick-Rack was often used to embellish. (above)

I love the one above I found in my mom's things. The clock face is a pocket. The embroidered clock face is set on 5 o'clock and the embroidery on the star says "Time to Cook!"

Do you remember the dish towel apron? The one above is made from a Christmas dish towel.

Ms. Geisel's book includes a pattern for a Basic Bib Apron. You can see more information at her website Apron Memories.
Sorting through and pressing these aprons for the church mother-daughter tea was a joyful journey down memory lane for me, bringing back so many wonderful memories of family gatherings and happy times. Every apron holds a special story.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Vintage Aprons at Tea

The "Mother's Apron Strings" tea at church was enjoyed by everyone attending. The greeters and kitchen workers wore aprons.

Vintage aprons were tied to the backs of chairs for decoration.

The ladies picked favorites out of the variety of vintage aprons. The one above is decorated with birthday cakes. Looking at the many vintage aprons and teacups brought back memories for many of the guests and were great for table conversation.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

May Tea - "Mother's Apron Strings" Mother - Daughter Tea

Continuing with my posts of "A Year of Teas" — I helped plan a mother - daughter tea held at our church today. This tea was sponsored by the Women's Ministry. It was not a fundraiser, but was a special time for fun, fellowship and worship for ladies of the church. One family of ladies had five generations attending.

The theme was Mother's Apron Strings. I gathered vintage aprons that belonged to my mom and aunts and Mary contributed aprons from her mother. The aprons were used for decorating and worn by the greeters and kitchen workers. I'll show more photos of those in upcoming posts. I am in the photo below (wearing my black teapot apron) along with daughter #2, Laurel and granddaughter, Kaitlyn.

As I mentioned yesterday, it's been a busy week of washing and packing 33 teapots, 53 cups and saucers, many vintage aprons gallons of tea punch. We had 16 tables, each set for 6 guests for a total of 96 guests. This was a tea luncheon from 11:00 to 12:30

We planned the menu to be easy to prepare and economical. Tickets were only $5 per person.
I named the menu items using apron terms.
We served: Chicken Salad Pockets
Pinafore Pimento Cheese Tea Sandwiches
Retro Benedictine Tea Sandwiches
Smocked Seasonal Fruit
Eyelet Lace Brownies
Frills and Ruffles Tarts
Polka Dot Petite Pies
Homespun Fruit Tea.

More details and photos to come...

Friday, May 15, 2009

33 Teapots

I was asked if I would help with a Mother-Daughter Tea, "Mother's Apron Strings," at our church scheduled for tomorrow (Saturday). Of course I said "yes!" Based on previous events, the committee expected 50 to attend when plans first began. As of tonight, 95 ladies have made reservations. I washed and packed 33 teapots and 53 teacups and saucers. Others are also providing cups and saucers. I made 20 gallons of fruit tea and provided vintage aprons for decorating. I'll post the details with photos soon!

Update on Aunt Ida

Just a quick update on my 95 year old Aunt Ida (see my previous post) —
She had a heart attack two weekends ago. After being transported from the nursing home to the emergency room, she refused hospitalization and treatment due to her age. She was returned to her beautiful private room at The Terrace Nursing and Rehab Facility. She did very well considering her age and condition for several days. Then took a turn for the worse last Friday. After a very difficult weekend, she stabilized on Monday and is now resting very comfortably. I was able to have her admitted as a Hospice patient, but she will remain at The Terrace. The only thing she was bummed about was that she didn't feel like going to Monday afternoon BINGO.

Aunt Ida is a strong lady and has been a role model for me throughout my life. Her only child, a son, died at age 21 in 1957 of Hodgkin's Disease, and her husband died in 1967. She has been a widow and lived alone for over 40 years. I her "daughter," my children and grandchildren are as they are her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and she adores my husband, GJ. She is very special to us and has traveled with us on several family vacations.

Thanks for your comments and concerns. I needed all my free time this week to spend time with her and to make arrangements to provide the care she needs to be comfortable.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Taking Time for Aunt Ida

I will be away from blogging for a while to be with my 95 year old Aunt Ida, the last member of my Dad's family. Years ago Aunt Ida started me on the path of teacup collecting and the graceful art of entertaining/hostessing. She is very special to me and my family.

The photo above was taken on her 95th birthday in December.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Tea Magnets

A couple of days ago, Angela over at Tea With Friends posted photos of some of her tea magnets and suggested that others might want to do the same.
These are the tea magnets on my kitchen refrigerator. In addition, I have a tea themed calendar with a magnet back and a postcard of an English "West Country Cream Tea" displayed on the refrigerator. A stamping friend made the teacup with the quote. Most of the others have been picked up on various travels.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Bowling, Pizza and Birthday Cake

Happy 8th Birthday KJ
We celebrated with a family evening of bowling, pizza, Hannah Montana birthday cake and lots of fun gifts to open! We are so happy to have KJ and our # 2 daughter, LEJ, back in Kentucky!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tea Light

I found this little tea light depicting an old coal or woodburning stove with a tea kettle on top. It was the last one at our local Cracker Barrel and was the display model without a box. But hey! You all know me well enought to know if it says "TEA", it is for me!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Derby Day with the Children

Austin and Kaitlyn celebrated the Kentucky Derby with finger sandwiches, desserts and my tea punch served in official Derby cups.
The menu included some traditional Kentucky foods — Benedictine Sandwiches, Pimiento Cheese Sandwiches, Kentucky Legends Brown Sugar Ham on Southern Biscuits and some of the children's favorites — Pizza Rolls and PNB&J Sandwiches.

Desserts included the Kern's Bakery official Derby Pie and...

Strawberry Shortcake (below)

We had a great day watching all the Kentucky Derby hoopla on TV (all day long here in KY).
None of our horses won, but, that was OK. We were happy for Cavin Borel who won on Mine That Bird today and Rachel Alexandra, the winning horse yesterday at the Kentucky Oaks. What a great weekend for a great jockey! And, what a great weekend for all Kentuckians!
Linda's Tea Punch
7 regular-sized tea bags or scoops of loose leaf tea
4 cups boiling water
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 (6 oz) can frozen orange juice concentrate
1 (6 oz.) can frozen lemonade concentrate
10 c. water
Pour boiling water over tea bags in a glass container (I use a Pyrex 8 c. measuring cup because I don't have a 1 gallon glass container)
Cover and steep 5 minutes; remove tea bags
Add sugar and stir until dissolved.
Pour into a one gallon container and add other ingredients (makes 1 gallon)
Refrigerate and serve over ice

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