Monday, January 28, 2019

Weekend Happenings

Saturday, before I left for Chelsea where my youngest son lives, the postman delivered a couple more packages.  Back in July I ordered a Kate Spade tea themed necklace, and this is its sequel. Isn't it cute?  The top four teacups are moveable.  It's a brand new item from eBay and was only $32.99 with free shipping.

The earrings are a combination of the two necklaces and I ordered them today - $20.89 and free shipping [same e-Bay vendor].

Below is the tea themed necklace I ordered last July.  Its chain is a little different from the teacup necklace.  I like to wear tea themed jewelry when I go to work.

I also received a book I ordered about the Whitney family and their home, now made into a restaurant.  It has a long-standing reputation of being haunted.  The mansion is featured on the cover of the book.  I ordered it in hopes of learning more about the family's history, not  haunted stories and paranormal activities [of which I've experienced none while working there].  

Last but not least, the March/April issue of Tea Time magazine arrived in the mail too.  February isn't here yet and we're looking ahead to March/April already.  But I love that spring-like cover.  It's a reminder that our cold winter months won't last forever.

It was a clear day for my drive to Chelsea last Saturday.  I was eager to join Jerry and see the grandkids.  My hubby went Thursday afternoon to relieve the kid's maternal grandparents from their babysitting shift.  While there he's been diligently working on a new glass backsplash as a surprise for Samantha.  Below is the craftsman in action.

Sunday morning I was back on the road again.  I had to return home to give my presentation at the monthly tea at the assisted living facility.  It had snowed during the night [a storm to precede the big one we got today], so I had to allow plenty of time to get home.

Jeremy and Sam live in a rural part of Chelsea.  There was no traffic on their road when I left, so I stopped to take a picture of the wintry scene from my car windshield/window.

Below is a photo taken in front of the assisted living facility later in the afternoon.  We didn't get as much snow as they got in Chelsea.

11 ladies and 1 gentleman attended the tea along with the staff.  The program was about Edsel and Eleanor Ford - Auto pioneer Henry Ford's son and J.L. Hudson's, [the founder of Detroit's iconic department store] niece.  The residents were so responsive because Edsel and Eleanor lived locally [though deceased for many years].  They had toured their mansion, and read about them many times in the Detroit-area newspapers.

Photo of the residents sipping their tea and chatting while waiting to be served their pastries before the program began.

There were no tea reservations today so I had the day off.  Everyone wanted to stay close to home where it was safe and warm.  Jeremy and Samantha returned from their trip to Hawaii and California, so Jerry's back home tonight.

He finished the backsplash and took some photos of the finished project to show me.  Now I'm ready for him to install one in our kitchen!  ;-)

That's Ellie's artwork adorning the cupboards in the above pictures. ;-)  Izzy took a video of her mom when she saw the backsplash for the first time and sent it to Jerry.  She was thrilled with her surprise.  The grandkids are happy to have their mom and dad back home again, and I'm glad Jerry's back home too!  

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Postal Deliveries

Don't you love it when a package arrives in the mail?  It brings out the child silently lurking inside me!  For two days in a row the postman has delivered packages.  So fun!

My birthday is approaching, and yesterday a gift came from my girlfriend. She'll be on a cruise when my birthday arrives, so she wanted me to receive the gift before she left. London blue topaz heart-shaped earrings.  They're beautiful!  Thanks, Sandy!

On a recent eBay search I came across 12 new [still in the package] cardinal napkins to go with my newly acquired Lefton cardinal china.  They're by St. Nicholas Square [Kohl's] and were reasonably priced, so I bought them.  Now I don't have to wait until next Christmas to shop for some.  All I need now are the napkin rings.

I recently bought the Lefton cardinal cream and sugar bowl on eBay too.  The salt and pepper shakers were a bonus, and they arrived a few days ago.  I have almost everything I need now - teapot, cream and sugar, teacups, luncheon plates, napkins, and placemats. [You can see the other china here.]  I can hardly wait to use them, and an opportunity is right around the corner.

Last but certainly not least, when I was aspiring to open a tearoom, I attended Magnolia and Ivy [Columbus, Georgia] in March 2002.  I met some amazing women at that training conference and have stayed in touch with some.  Three ladies from Ohio attended the conference and realized their dream of opening Lady Charlton's Tea Parlour [now closed after several years of business].  I connected with one of them on Facebook.  Janet recently began a new chapter in her life by opening a booth at an antique mall.  When she posted photos of her booth, my eyes immediately spotted a birthday teapot.

When I wrote a comment to congratulate her on the new venture, I said I was disappointed that I didn't live closer because I liked the teapot.  She responded that she would ship it to me.  It arrived in today's mail along with some Walker's shortbread cookies and tea.  Isn't it cute?  It's by Department 56.  I'm so glad nobody else purchased it and gave me the opportunity.

Have you made any new tea purchases lately?

Monday, January 21, 2019

Meeting Mariana...

Twenty-two guests braved Michigan's frigid winter temperatures to come to tea at The Whitney this afternoon. I especially looked forward to seeing Joan again and meeting her great-granddaughter, Mariana.

We started out with a teapot of black tea on the table [I used the last of the Mistletoe Kiss holiday tea today], and then switched over to the Garden Blend [our signature tisane] so Mariana could taste both.

Mariana was delightful and enjoyed both the tea and the time spent with her great-grandmother.

When I started to glue the cover of her etiquette booklet together last Saturday I decided it looked too plain, so I did a little bit more embellishing.  I hope it will be a fun keepsake of the Afternoon Tea she enjoyed at The Whitney thanks to her loving great-grandmother.  

While we were trying to stay warm in Michigan, Jeremy sent the photo below to Izzy from Hawaii where he and Samantha are enjoying an anniversary getaway.  It must be awful living in Hawaii, don't ya think?  ;-)

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Snow Day!

Today is definitely an appropriate day to sip my favorite Green Pomegranate Tea from my porcelain snowman teacup while typing this blog post.

Today is the first major snow storm we've had this winter.   It's 20 degrees, and the snow has been falling steadily since I lifted the bedroom window shade shortly after 8:00 o'clock this morning.

~  Street view from my front porch.  ~  

Below is my HHR [better known as 'Betsy'].  I'm sure glad I don't have to drive her into Detroit for work today.

Last night I subscribed for a one month subscription to the Detroit Free Press archives.  Viewing old articles is a perfect project for a snowy day.  It's the best $7.95 I ever spent. I was up late last night reading articles about the Whitney family.  I discovered that not only did David Whitney, Jr.'s daughter, Grace, get married in the mansion, but his daughter, Flora Ann, did too!

But before I delve into more old Free Press articles, I've got to finish putting together a booklet for a 9-year-old little girl who is coming for tea on Monday with her great-grandmother.  Her great-grandmother is a repeat Whitney guest who discovered over the Christmas holidays that her great-granddaughter likes tea, so she's bringing her to The Whitney on Monday for Afternoon Tea.  [She has the day off from school for Martin Luther King Day.]  Her great-grandmother asked if I'd share some tea etiquette with her when they come, so I decided to put it in booklet form for her to take home.

I love what Bruce Richardson said in the Jan/Feb 2019 issue of Tea Time magazine: [paraphrasing] etiquette shouldn't be viewed from the perspective of a list of 'rules', but rather 'skills.'

I haven't glued the cover pieces on yet - they're just laying on top for this picture.  What fun helping a little girl experience the pleasures of tea with proper social graces!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Look Who Came to Dinner!

Late Sunday afternoon my youngest son, Jeremy, called and wanted to know if I'd be working yesterday, because he had a meeting at the Westin Book Cadillac Hotel [in downtown Detroit] and could come by The Whitney when his meeting was finished.

Yes, I was working yesterday and I'd be delighted to have him visit.  When Afternoon Tea was finished I clocked out and waited for his arrival.  It was his first time to visit The Whitney and see the mansion.  I waited for him on the front porch of my home away from home!

After the three-story tour of the mansion, I treated him to dinner.  Appetizer was Calamari, then Crab Bisque, and Jeremy's entree was Beef Wellington.  Mine was Seafood Sauté: Shrimp, Diver Scallops, and Maine Lobster on toasted Orzo.

It was so nice having one-on-one time with Jeremy.  Now I need to get my daughter, Lori, to The Whitney, then all three children will have seen where their mama works. 

I like the night view of Woodward Avenue as seen through the Drawing Room window in the picture below.

Monday, January 14, 2019

A Belated Christmas Present

Today's post is about a belated Christmas present I bought myself!  Do you ever buy yourself a present?

During Christmas 2017 I was wondering what I could possibly buy a friend who has everything! As I was looking through a Simpson & Vail tea catalog I saw a teapot with a beautiful red cardinal on it and decided to order that for her.  Upon arrival it was so pretty I wished I would have bought one for myself.  When my daughter asked for a gift suggestion that I'd like for Christmas, the teapot immediately came to mind and I ended up with a cardinal teapot too.  There were no teacups, plates or other serving pieces available.

Fast-forward to January 2nd, 2019: While blog reading, Sandi at Rose Chintz Cottage posted a picture of a beautiful teacup with a cardinal on it that she received for a Christmas present from her son.  She said it was made by Lefton China and her son found it in an antique store in Michigan.  eBay immediately flashed through my mind, and a Lefton China cardinal search began.  Beautiful pieces came up in the search, and I succumbed to some teacups and dessert plates.  The sugar and creamer are forthcoming [eBay searches can be costly!].  The vintage dishes are from 1984.

Cardinals were extremely popular at Christmas this year, and the placemats pictured above came from Kohl's.  Obtaining cardinal napkin rings and coordinating napkins will have to wait until next Christmas when they become available again.

I rarely purchase from eBay anymore because most of the time shipping is as much [if not more] than the price of the item.  Since dishware is heavy, shipping is always costly. When the lady in Texas calculated the 12 lb. shipping fee I initially declined, but after giving it more thought I decided to purchase them.

The eBay seller even enclosed a sweet handmade notecard with my order saying she hoped I enjoyed many cups of good tea with the set.  I'm sure I will.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Book Giveaway Winner

The winner of the book giveaway is Victorian Girl.  Congratulations!  I will get them mailed off to you.  Thanks to all who participated.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Queen Elizabeth II Bobblehead

Now that I'm working I miss a lot of things on Facebook, but I happened to see a post in a group I belong to [Afternoon Tea Across America] on Monday, January 7th, from one of the members stating it was National Bobblehead Day.  She posted a photo of her favorite bobblehead - Queen Elizabeth II. 

Prior to January 7th, I've never owned a bobblehead.  I've seen a lot of cute ones but have never been tempted to buy one.  This one of Queen Elizabeth II with her Corgi, however, was the exception.  It's so cute and realistic that I Googled to see if I could find one.  I found it at Amazon and Ebay, but the most reasonably priced one was at

Since I've done a few presentations about the Queen's life, I had to buy it.  It was reasonably priced at $17.99 [plus shipping].  The postman delivered it this morning before I went to work.

There she stands on my bookshelf amidst some of the books in my collection written about her.  I smile everytime I see it.

The box even had a little bit of history about the Queen printed on it. [Click on picture to enlarge for reading.]

Do you own any bobbleheads?  Did you know a National Bobblehead Day existed?  Live and Learn!  Lifting my teacup in tribute to the Queen!  Long may she live!  Hopefully she'll be blessed with continued good health and exceed her mother's age.  The Queen Mum died five months short of her 102nd birthday.  Queen Elizabeth II will be 93 on her April 21st birthday.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

A Book Giveaway

I am drawn to tea books like a magnet.  I love them!  Recently I organized one of my bookcases that holds most of my tea books and found I had duplicates, so I'm sharing my excess with you.

If you would like to win these two books, please leave a comment and I'll draw a winner and announce it on Saturday.

On another subject... the postman delivered the cutest card from my girlfriend.  It's a vintage picture of ladies having tea together on the veranda.  I had to share it.

Last Saturday, January 5th, my hubby and I were still celebrating the holidays with his brother and sister-in-law.  We've established a tradition of going to Red Lobster for dinner together every year near the Christmas holidays.  

Brian got a new phone that proposes to take excellent pictures that will make you look good.  I told him to return it for false advertising - at least regarding me!  ;-)

[Brian & Linda, Jerry & Me]

Are you still celebrating?  Are your decorations still up?  My hubby took the outside lights down yesterday, and the nativity set is packed away for another year, but the Christmas tree and mantel houses are still up waiting for me.  It won't happen today because I'm off to work in a few minutes, but soon.

Monday, January 7, 2019

2019 Pantone Color of the Year

I'm always fascinated by the color Pantone selects as their color of the year.  This year's color is 'Living Coral' [#16-1546].

For fun I did an online search for coral teacups and found several pretty ones.  Unfortunately I don't have any teacups that color in my collection.

[Wedgwood teacup available at Bed, Bath and Beyond]

[The coral teacup above is at Etsy along with several other lovely ones.]  

The Jan./Feb. 2019 cover of Tea Time magazine gives a nod to the color coral for tea time.

Do you have any coral teawares?

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

January National Hot Tea Month

Above is the commercial graphic promoting January as Hot Tea Month, but I took my own photos.

Back in 2013 I posted: "If your New Year's resolution pertains to health, then you'll be happy to know that tea combined with proper diet and exercise can be an effective way to improve your health".  That's still true in 2019!  

I've been drinking green tea exclusively for a few months now and Green Pomegranate is my 'go to' tea.  What's in your cup this January?

Saturday, January 12th is National Hot Tea Day and April 21st is National Tea Day [fixed anyway you like - hot or cold].  National Tea Day is celebrated in the United States and England, but I'm glad tea's not restricted to any specific day.  It's great 365 days of the year!