Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Third Blog Anniversary - Part IV - Home Tour

During my three years of blogging, 32 different kinds of tea and numerous companies have been written about.  Some tea purveyors sent teas to review on my blog. It's been fun taking you with me [vicariously] to several tea tastings at two local tea shops - TranquiliTea and The Rendezvous With Tea.

I've featured more than 40 books, several tea publications and magazines, reviewed 12 movies and two T.V. Series - Mr. Selfridge, and, of course, Downton Abbey, which has appeared in many of my posts. British Royalty have also been favorite subjects on my blog, as well as other well-known people, deceased [i.e. Beatrix Potter, Jane Austen, Anna, 7th Duchess of Bedford, and more recently, John Harney] and living - Author Susan Branch, and tea experts Jane Pettigrew, Bruce Richardson, Elizabeth Knight and a few others.

[Susan and me at her book signing.  Don't you love how everyone is her girlfriend?]

[L-R:  Jane Pettigrew and Bruce Richardson]

32 posts shared recipes, as well as the fun French Macaron [pronounced mah-Kah-Rohn] class that I took at Sur la table. 

Favorite restaurants, stores and purchases have also been topics. My passion for Detroit's legendary J.L. Department Store has made it's way into many posts [thank you for indulging me!].  

I've shared vacation spots and lots of fun places and destinations. I've written about many exciting things such as... estate sale finds... holiday events... and a long list of other subjects too lengthy to include in this post.

Many posts shared family happenings that were about happy times...births, proms, graduations, an engagement, and some not so happy... the death of both my parents. By now you probably feel like you know all the members of my family.

[Marissa's Graduation]

[Tiffany & John's Engagement]

[Brianna's Senior Prom]

As I wind down this week of "looking back" I'm inviting you into my home [via the Internet]. If it were possible, I'd have every person who reads my blog over for a cup of tea, but an Internet visit will have to suffice.  Below is the place that I've called home since 1978.  It's where I hang my heart, and temporarily escape from the hectic pace of the world.

[The front door has since been painted red.]

In 1997 I had a watercolor painting done of the house. My family were the first occupants of the newly constructed house, and the only occupants for the past 37 yeas. The house is an 1800 sq. ft. ranch with a 2 car attached garage, and the perfect size for us. Our youngest son named it "Marrocco Manor of Memories" [the street we live on is Marrocco Dr.]. It was the only house he lived in until he went off the college.

Welcome to my home!  One step inside the front door lets you know you've entered the home of a tea lover [and one who loves the color blue]!

My living room is currently under renovation. The project didn't get underway until late October, and my hubby had to stop for the holidays, and cold temperatures are preventing him from working now. [His shop is in the garage.] Below are some "before" pictures.  I've vowed the 'new' living room won't be as busy, so a garage sale is looming on the horizon this spring.

The drapes came down to make way for plantation shutters, and the Thomas Kinkade border and chintz-like wall paper on the half wall came down too.

The walls were painted a slightly different shade of blue.  Following Christmas the Graber plantation shutters were installed.  Below are some "after" pictures up to this point. I love the blue French toile wallpaper, and a matching valance will be made to go over the shutters.

Next we go into the kitchen/dining area - one large combined room, with no formal dining room. My indispensable Breville electric kettle sits on the counter next to my tea canisters.

A whimsical teapot and teacups hang next to the kitchen window above the sink.  A tearoom cookie jar and matching teapot sits on another counter.

The dining room table is probably the most used piece of furniture in my house, and is by far the most welcoming.  Countless friends and family members have sat around it over the past 37 years. What fun it was to welcome blogging friend, Judith [Lavender Cottage], and her husband, Glenn, to our table last year when they were passing through on their way back home to Canada.

The picture below was a comfort food dinner [chicken pot pie] for my girlfriend and her husband, using my Currier and Ives dishes.

The photo below best shows the dining area of the room.  The table was set awaiting the family's arrival on Christmas Eve this past year.

The teapot chandelier is one of my favorite things in the house.  It didn't take me long to decide the Casablanca light fixture/fan had to go when I saw this chandelier in the store.

The rug under my dining room table is also tea themed.  We painted the accent wall behind the china cabinet the color of the grapes to tie it together.

The Temple Stuart china cabinet was the first piece of quality furniture we bought after my hubby was discharged from the military and we set-up housekeeping in Michigan. It looks pretty good for 45 years old, and holds a lot of my treasured china.

The repro ice box [below] also sits in the dining area, and serves as my tea cabinet. 

I wish you could drop in for a cup of tea!  I love the beautiful quote, "Come and share a pot of tea, my home is warm and my friendship free."

The family room is just a step down from the dining area.  My talented hubby has put a lot of work into this room too, and completely changed its original appearance. Below, is how the fireplace mantel was decorated for Christmas 2014.

The fireplace as it appears the rest of the year.  

My hubby built all the wall units in the family room.  

The family room has a cathedral ceiling, so my hubby built a high shelf that extends wall to wall allowing me to display 18 of my teapots.  The only down side is I have to get a ladder when I need one of the teapots, but the shelf is worth the task.

A favorite lamp in the family room.

 Below is the master bedroom where my hubby and I go for rest at the end of a long day.

Our daughter stitched the piece below for our 25th Wedding Anniversary, and it hangs over the bed. Isn't it beautiful? 

Below is the guest room.  My hubby also made these bookcases to hold my large cookbook collection.

Below is my office where I've spent a lot of time lately putting the anniversary blog series together. My tea angels sit on a shelf, along with a few teacups and small decorative teapots to decorate the office. My hubby built the shelf above the decorative wall shelf.  I think I should keep him, don't you?  ;-)

As you can see, I sometimes turn the Food Network Channel on while I'm working in my office.  

At times you'll find me eating at my computer desk while I'm writing blog posts, reading e-mails, or viewing your blog posts.   The photo below happened to be a late breakfast of baked oatmeal and, of course, tea.

This concludes today's post.  Part V will be the last post in my third blog anniversary series - my tea collections.  If you would have asked me prior to categorizing my blog posts how many collections I have, I probably would have said three or four, but my blog revealed I wrote about 24 collections [a collection is least three of something]. Shhhh.... don't tell my hubby, but then he reads my blog so he'll see it anyway. I can already see him shaking his head.  ;-) My mother was right when she said she hopes I never have to move!


  1. Congratulations on the third anniversary!

  2. I have enjoyed this review and look forward to seeing your collections. I confess, when I am home alone I often eat at the computer.

  3. I am enjoying all your anniversary posts! Susan Branch is one of my favorites, too. And we moving into our house in 1978, too (January). I do agree that if you live in a house that long, you can never move! Love all your collections!

  4. I was completely taken with your beautiful tea themed home when we visited Phyllis. One can tell with the blogs you post what a warm and caring person you are and a fabulous host. (this includes Jerry)
    Your anniversary series has been inspiring. I was wondering if you'd open the doors to the cabinet that is home to so many bags and canisters of tea that I saw. :-)

  5. Hi Phyllis,
    Brianna looks like Cinderella in her prom gown. I am swooning over your blue toile wallpaper; how beautiful! Your Currier and Ives china is gorgeous; love those dishes! I like your tea houses displayed above your cabinets too. I had my Christmas village displayed above my kitchen cabinets for a few years. It always got lit at night. There are teapots up there now. Happy 3rd Blogiversary, my friend!


  6. I have enjoyed seeing pictures of your sweet family and of your beautiful home in your blog over the last few years, and it was nice to revisit them. Your husband is a very talented craftsman, and how wonderful to have all those storage and display pieces. I wish I could come sit at your table and share a cup of tea with you in person - but am thankful we can be friends through the Internet! I'll look forward to seeing your collections again tomorrow.

  7. Great post! Looking forward to seeing many more.


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