Monday, September 17, 2012

An "Anne of Green Gables" Tea Party

This past week was busy preparing for my daughter's sixth annual birthday tea party which was held on Saturday, September 15th.  At her request, it's a celebration of getting together with dear friends [her two piano teachers], rather than focusing on her birthday.   [I wrote about her five previous tea parties August 28th thru September 3rd.  If you haven't already done so, please take a look at past themes.]

I opted not to use the keyboard dishware with a musical theme this year.  Thanks to my cousin, who brought the Anne of Green Gables DVD's to Memphis in July [which I wrote about here], and my blogging friends who hosted cyberspace Anne of Green Gables tea parties, "there was more scope for the imagination" changing this year's theme to  Anne of Green Gables.

First was making the invitations...

[Image courtesy of Anne of Green Gables site]


And ordering the Anne of Green Gables cookbooks, tea-time CD's and Anne doll that would be the centerpiece for the table - most of which came from Sullivan Entertainment, producers of the DVD starring Megan Follows.


Then determining the menu...


Focusing on the tablescape... which began with making "Anne" place/name cards.


Making "favor bags" for the ladies to take home...  I packaged Trader Joe's Maple Leaf cookies since Canada's national symbol is the Maple Leaf.  Trader Joe's only sells these cookies in the fall, and the clerk told me they can't keep them on the shelf.  They're delicious!  A Lipton's pyramid tea bag of Bavarian Wild Berry black tea was included in the favor bag to drink with the cookies.

The favor wouldn't be complete without some chocolate caramels since Anne likened "being in the depths of despair" to the uncomfortable feeling of trying to eat, and getting a lump in your throat so you can't swallow anything - "not even if it was a chocolate caramel."  She told Marilla, "I had one chocolate caramel two years ago and it was simply delicious.  I've often dreamed since then that I had a lot of chocolate caramels, but I always wake up just when I'm going to eat them!"


Choosing my table linens...  I bought a white lace table liner several years ago that has sat in it's original packaging because it was too large for most of my tablescapes, so I altered it for this tea party.  I purchased a sage green tablecloth to lay over the top, and was pleased with the lacy, layered look. 


The fun part was setting the table the night before the tea party. 


There's Anne standing center stage on her slate - before she broke it over Gilbert Blythe's head!


The color pink and roses had to be part of the tablescape since Anne saw an early wild rose on the buggy ride to White Sands, and exclaimed to Marilla, "Isn't it lovely?  Don't you think it must be glad to be a rose?  Wouldn't it be nice if roses could talk?  I'm sure they could tell us lovely things.  And isn't pink the most bewitching color in the world?  I love it, but I can't wear it.  Redheaded people can't wear pink, not even in imagination!"

Each teacup held napkin roses and I used my Homer Laughlin eggshell nautilus china with pink roses and pink Depression glass accessories. 


Even the chairs got decorated!


Then it was time to get busy on food prep in the kitchen!  Savory scones cooling from the oven... 


Making "Anne hats" for the salad...   This required trips to a few $ stores to find miniature-sized cookies, but I found them!


Mission accomplished!


A toast with Raspberry Cordial was the first thing on the menu, and I used the recipe in Kate Macdonald's, The Anne of Green Gables Cookbook.  Kate is L.M. Montgomery's granddaughter.  In the cookbook the recipe is called Diana Barry's Favourite Raspberry Cordial, but I changed it to "Bosom Friend" Raspberry Cordial for our tea party.  The recipe called for 2 packages of frozen unsweetened raspberries, and I used 1 [12 oz.] package and substituted fresh raspberries for the second frozen package.  It was delicious and nobody got tipsy!  ;-)

 

I dusted the rims of the glasses with pink sugar for an extra touch.  I wish I would have taken a picture of the ladies toasting to "Kindred Spirits," but I didn't!  ;-(


At 1:00 p.m. the table was ready, and it was time for the tea party to begin.  Our "blessing" for the meal was everyone saying The Lord's Prayer together, since that was the prayer Marilla gave Anne to memorize the day Rachel Lynde came calling and their "verbal conflict" ensued!  The line, "Give us this day our daily bread" made the prayer fitting for the blessing.  


Maple flavored black tea was served - both iced and hot.

First Course:  Corn Chowder, Savory Scones and "Anne Doll" Curried Rice Salad.  [Corn and Potatoes probably would have been grown on Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert's farm, and were the two main ingredients in the chowder.  Potatoes are Prince Edward Island's primary cash crop.]


A word of acknowledgement about the "Anne Doll Salad":  When I was putting the final touches on my menu last week I visited Lady B's Time for Tea blog and Ruthie posted a photo of a rag doll salad that she served at a recent tea party.  As soon as I saw the carrot hair I knew I had to incorporate it into my Anne menu with a few variations.  Thanks, Ruthie, for the inspiration!  I'm sure a culinary expert would know how to braid carrots, but they snapped when I tried, so I settled for curling them instead.  And Anne did get a hair cut after her heart-breaking experience with the black dye, so braids weren't absolutely necessary.


This is the cold, curried rice salad with chopped marinated artichoke hearts that was under Anne's red leaf lettuce dress.


2nd Course:  Croque Monsieur [Ham and Cheese Croissant].  While it's nothing Marilla would have prepared, Anne might have had it when she went to one of the fancy teas with Josephine Barry in Charlottetown!  ;-)

 

3rd Course:  Strawberry Tarts with "Sublime" [as Anne described it] Vanilla Ice Cream!


Tea Party Guests

L-R:  Ruth, Tiffany [my granddaughter], Betty, & Lori [my daughter]
Granddaughter, Marissa, woke up sick Saturday morning and couldn't attend.

Thank you for allowing me to share the details of this very special tea party with you.  It was so much fun to plan and host.  The only thing that could be better than hosting an Anne of Green Gables tea party, is actually visiting Prince Edward Island!   It's on my bucket list and hopefully will happen someday.

 *  *  *

I've linked to Rose Chintz Cottage for Tea Time Tuesday
and
Antiques and Teacups for Tuesday Cuppa Tea


17 comments:

  1. You always amaze me with the amount of research and detail you go to for a tea party. It is impressive. Just seeing each little thing was delightful.

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  2. What a lovely tea you gave! Your guests are very lucky ladies! Everything is so perfect for your "Anne" tea.
    Nancy

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  3. I love it! So much attention to the details! The hat cookies are just adorable, as is the salad - but so are the place cards, menus, etc. Just delightful! (and PEI is on my bucket list, too.)

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  4. This is so impressive. I started making the "Raspberry Cordial" at Christmas about 12 years ago- same cookbook as you have and it became a tradition. You did an outstanding job and lots of work! It is wonderful!

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  5. Again you did a wonderful job on Lori's birthday tea. The table is beautiful and the menu sounds delightful. I am sure Lori was pleased beyond words.

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  6. Wow! What an impressive and beautiful menu and tablescape!

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  7. "Isn't it splendid to think of all the things there are to find out about? It just makes me feel glad to be alive--it's such an interesting world." Anne of Green Gables

    Thank you for sharing all of your 'splendid' ideas. I would have LOVED this tea party!

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  8. Oh my, I would love to attend, or perhaps give, a "Kindred Spirits" tea like this! Just amazed at all the magnificent "Anne" touches you managed to include--soooooo much care went into this tea. Thanks for sharing the wonderful details and no doubt inspiring a few kindred spirits of your own for future teas!

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  9. What a wonderful party! I, too, love Anne of Green Gables along with my daughter. Perhaps we will try to create one for my grand daughter. It's never too early. I saw an Anne doll in our local consignment shop...I hope it's still there! Thank you so much for such a lovely post.
    Barbara

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  10. Hello Phyllis,
    What an extraordinary Anne Tea Party! I loved every bit of it! Loved your name cards! The food looks wonderful and I'm sure everyone enjoyed themselves. I will be making that ragdoll salad myself one of these days and isn't it perfect for Anne?
    Your tea party is delightful and filled with much 'scope for imagination!' I would love to have you link this up with my tea party. My ladies would love it! Have a beautiful day.

    Blessings,
    Sandi

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  11. That is such a wonderful tea you prepared-you certainly covered all the details! Love the Anne theme and I hope you do get to come to Prince Edward Island soon.
    I am sure you and your girls enjoyed it very much!

    Thank you for your visit.

    Take care,
    Carolyn

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  12. Goodness Phyllis, you did a lot of research and prep work for this lovely lunch. I'm sure the ladies just loved all the details and I certainly enjoyed seeing the photos and reading of your plans.
    Judith

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  13. What a wonderful Anne birthday party! I love all the cute favors..especially the hat cookies! Your table setting was wonderful! And the name tags are so cute! Of COURSE you had to have raspberry cordial! Thanks so much for sharing your special tea party and linking to Tuesday Cuppa Tea!
    Ruth

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  14. Exquisite to every detail. Playful and fancy at the same time. Thanks so much for sharing.

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  15. What a fabulous birthday tea! I love everything from the invitations to the placecards, to the food. This party is a definite wow!

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  16. Wonderful Anne of Green Gables birthday tea party! Invitations, placecards, and delicious food! Happy Tea Day!

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  17. Dear Phyllis,
    What a fabulous party!! You outdid yourself. I love the hats with braids that you made. Sooo cute. I need more info on the hats you made for the salad. Your dolls came out so great. I love the shoes and hat. What did you use for the nose? Sorry your braids didn't work but it surely looked like Anne and I am sure the girls were wowed. (love the tablecloth too)
    Great job!
    Ruthie from Lady B's Time for Tea

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