Monday, August 30, 2021

Gone With the Wind and More

A few weeks ago the Life Enrichment Director at Independence Village [Senior Living] in Plymouth, MI called about doing a Gone With the Wind presentation at a tea party on September 28th.  I agreed since The Whitney's Autumn & Apples tea will be over by then.

I did a Gone With the Wind presentation in 2013 and 2015, and toured the Gone With the Wind museum in Marietta, GA in 2018, but I haven't given the book or movie much thought since.  So in between working on the Autumn & Apples tea favors for work, I've been trying to get my thoughts in order for the presentation.

I ordered a piece of fabric from the movie's 70th Anniversary [2009] from Etsy, to make a table covering for my display table.  I'll sew it to some brown fabric since there wasn't enough material for the project.  

I also ordered some books from E-bay, Barnes & Noble and Amazon - The Complete Gone With the Wind Trivia Book, The Filming of Gone With the Wind and The Pictorial History of Gone With the Wind [still waiting on that one to arrive].  

I want to engage the residents, so I'm going to have a fun, easy quiz with a prize.  I ordered two adult coloring books to give along with some colored pencils.  Coloring is supposed to be very therapeutic and relaxing, right?

My hubby had surgery last Thursday, so I took along some magazines I already had and read them from cover to cover while I waited.  It was a very long day with some minor complications, so I was glad to have something to occupy my time.

I got a Hawthorne replica of Tara from E-bay, and have a figurine of Scarlett that I bought at an estate sale along with some commemorative plates, plus four 8 x 10 photos from E-bay, so I think I'm set with visuals.

I never thought I had enough Gone With the Wind memorabilia to fill a tote, but between my newest acquisitions plus items I previously had, I can easily fill a tote now.  I had forgotten what I had until I did a search on my blog to jog my memory.  It resulted in spending most of this afternoon locating everything.  It'll definitely be a time saver to have everything organized and together in one place.

Moving on...  The jewelry company that made the tea-themed ring that I blogged about previously, posted a sterling silver teacup pendant today on Facebook. It's much more reasonable than the ring [originally $59 on sale for $24], so I'm thinking about ordering it as a trial run.  I wouldn't be heart-broken if I lost $24, and if it arrives safely and the quality is as nice as the pictures, I might be brave enough to order the ring.  Their website says they have a 30-day return policy if you're not satisfied.  Will keep you posted.

Saturday [Aug. 28th] was our sweet daughter's 54th Birthday.  I saw her briefly at the hospital but didn't get to celebrate with her.  We were going to do that tomorrow over dinner, but with some unresolved issues from my hubby's surgery it's been postponed until Thursday.  I'm glad she got to celebrate with her husband, daughter, son-in-law, and two granddaughters.

Today was back-to-school for our three youngest grands and Samantha sent pictures.  Times sure do change.  When I was in school jeans full of holes were a sign of poverty, or they were worn out and ready for the rag bag.  Kids avoided wearing them because they didn't want to be embarrassed.  Today, they're a fashion statement and cost big bucks at retail stores!  Go figure!

Ellie off to school on her bike which is only a couple of blocks away.

Landon got his morning workout carrying two backpacks - one for school and the other for football after school.

Granddaughter Brooke posted Facebook pictures of her apartment at Olivet Nazarene University.  Not sure when her first day of school is as she begins her second year.

My prayers are with all the grands as they return to school.  I hope they have a great year and all shine for Jesus!

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Family, Church and Jewelry

Grandson, Landon, came Monday morning for his over night stay and back-to-school shopping. Yesterday we took him to breakfast at Country Oven and then met his mother half-way for his ride back home.  He had his first school football practice yesterday afternoon.

Granddaughter, Brooke, turned 19 last Friday and celebrated with her mother, sister, and maternal grandma at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis.  She and Brianna enjoyed the rides, but the highlight was an evening concert with John Stamos [Full House sitcom star] and the Beach Boys [popular during my high school days in the 1960's].  Brooke loves Full House which first aired in 1987 and ran until 1995.  I think she has all 8 seasons [192 episodes] on DVDs.  

They returned on Sunday, but I chose today to take her to lunch before she returns to university in Illinois this Friday.  She picked Chili's as her restaurant of choice and ordered her 'go to' meal of 'Big Mouth Bites' [mini hamburgers].

While making my recent Shutterfly album, I came across a picture of Brooke and her Dad [below] at a tea party our church did at a nursing and rehab center in 2003 to commemorate those who perished in the 9/11/01 terrorist attacks.  The tea parties were an organized effort by an organization across the United States, and our tea party represented southeastern Michigan.  It was Brooke's first tea party.

It hardly seems possible she's 19 already!

We were very close to our church property, and since I hadn't been there in a while to see the progress we decided to drive by and check things out before taking Brooke home.  Our new target date for holding our first service is Sunday, September 12th, but this is the third target date, so we'll see if it actually happens.  All the major construction outside and inside [electrical, plumbing, etc.] is done, it's just finish work that needs to be completed.  Below are some pics that were taken today and a few others from recent days.

~ Outside lighting is done ~

~ They were working on landscaping today ~

Cross on the platform behind where the pulpit will be.

The kitchen excites me!  I can see preparations for lots of ladies' tea parties happening there.

First prayer meeting around the exterior cross last week.

A favorite picture taken by one of our parishioners recently as he drove by.

In closing, the tea or coffee-themed ring below came through on my Facebook feed today. It's by Jeulia Premium Artisan Jewelry and is sterling silver.

The description says it has 134 stones, referred to as Jeulia Stones [whatever those are].  It's originally priced at $199 but is presently on sale for $119 with free shipping.  Located in Hong Kong, I think I'd be leery of ordering it but I do think it's unique and cute.

I would be very comfortable buying this Kate Spade teacup pendant necklace.  It originally sells for $119 and is currently on sale for $59.

Sunday, August 22, 2021

Upcoming Cityfest at The Whitney

Cityfest is an annual fall event at The Whitney with several special events taking place September 10th - 19th.  One of those events is the Autumn & Apples tea on Sept. 19th with two seatings at 12:00 noon and 2:30 p.m.

My boss asked me to think about putting together an appropriate gift to give to attendees.  The first step was to contact our tea blender, Mary Jones of Detroit based Intutea, to create a special blend to include in the gift and to serve at the tea.  She created two blends for me to sample and I selected Apple Cinnamon - a black tea containing apple pieces, cinnamon, safflower petals and other herbs. It tastes wonderful and is very aromatic.

Next I had to get my creative juices flowing for the presentation of the gift.  I ordered plastic apples [which will contain the tea] from Oriental Trading, and wooden quart-size berry baskets from Amazon to set them in.

Supplies are ready and awaiting assembly.

This was the first basket I assembled.  I purchased the silk fall leaves and brown shred from the Dollar Store.  I also bought gold shred and will have alternating baskets of gold and brown.  The baskets will not only coordinate with the theme but will enhance the tables, and most importantly, my boss liked them.  ;-)

The basket seemed too plain so I made another quick trip to the Dollar Store to see what ribbon they had to make a bow to add to the front.  I liked the idea of rustic burlap, but am not sold on the 2 1/2 inch wide ribbon they had.  I'll make a trip to the Craft store tomorrow.  The bow does enhance the basket, but needs to be a little smaller with narrower ribbon. I'll need to make 80 bows!

I ordered sealable bags that will hold enough loose-leaf tea to make six cups of tea.  The bags will go inside the apple.  Now to measure out 80 packets of tea!

The Whitney will also include a gift from Parmenter's Cider Mill in Northville to all guests.  I think this project is going to keep me very busy for the next week or so!  If you are a local reader, I hope you will consider attending this tea.  More details are provided at The Whitney website.

Speaking of The Whitney, friends from church came to the 11:00 a.m. seating of Mansion Tea yesterday to celebrate Kenadie's 12th birthday.  Her mom and grandma celebrated with her.  It was a fun surprise to see them.

Scones are served separately so are not on the tiered server.  A plate of three jumbo strawberries with chantilly cream also accompany the meal.

Our strawberries aren't decorated, but a friend recently sent me a photo of adorable teapot decorated strawberries that would be perfect for a tea party - just very labor intensive.

When I got home from work my Shutterfly album was waiting for me.  I'm SO pleased with it!  Can't say enough good about the quality of Shutterfly photo albums.  They are so worth the time and money.

I'm anxious to begin working on a sequel to this album after I cross a couple other projects off my 'to do' list.

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Ellie's Visit and Teapot Purses

Nine-year-old granddaughter, Ellie, came yesterday for her visit and back-to-school shopping. She doesn't have an iPhone yet and prefers playing games over movie watching, so we played several rounds of Cootie, Old Maid, Memory and Checkers to occupy her time.  We don't have the variety of games that she has at home, but we made do.

She slept in this morning and when she awoke we took her to Country Oven for breakfast.  

She ordered bacon and pancakes with lots of whipped cream and the server obliged!

Two grandchildren visits down and one to go.  Landon comes next Monday.  After we met our daughter-in-law at the half-way spot to deliver Ellie, my hubby took me to a nearby HomeGoods store.  It's been a long time since I've been in one, and I wanted to look around.  I didn't come out empty handed.

The first thing that caught my attention was a Spode plate from the Woodland series, with a bison on it.  When we went out west last summer with our youngest son and his family, one of the highlights for Jeremy was spotting a bison in the distance of a Yellowstone prairie.  He patiently waited by the side of the road while the bison meandered its way across the prairie and a couple of ponds until he was close enough to get a good picture.  The plate seemed to have Jeremy's name written all over it.  I bought it and then sent a picture with a text message to him.  He liked it and I'll send it home when Landon comes next week.

I've been pondering getting a porcelain chinoiserie garden stool for my living room for awhile now [a new repro not an authentic antique] and HomeGoods had a nice one reasonably priced, so it came home with me too.  I justified the purchase by telling myself that's why I work.  ;-)

In the past I've shared a couple pieces of tea-themed Kate Spade necklaces that I've purchased online, but last week three of her tea-themed purses came across my Facebook Afternoon Tea Across America feed that left me drooling.

The purse is all leather and fully lined.  The original cost was $399, but it's on sale right now for $239 with free shipping.   I have six colored inexpensive teapot purses that I bought in 2004 [hot pink, silver, neon green, sky blue, gold and red] but they're made of vinyl-like material and don't compare to the quality of the Kate Spade purse.  

I had a black one too, but since I carried it the most it wore out and had to be thrown away.  I never replaced it.

My first thought regarding the Kate Spade purse was "it's way out of my price range" [and it is more than I normally pay for a handbag], but it's not outrageous compared to what other designer handbags sell for.  I browsed a pre-owned designer handbag website and $239 was nothing compared to their prices, and the cost of brand new designer handbags makes my head spin. 

Kate Spade came out with a wicker teapot handbag in 2016 that's no longer available. It originally sold for $398 and if you're lucky enough to find a used one online, it's a lot more than the original price.   It's SOOOO cute!

Here's another clutch tea-themed purse from 2016 that's no longer available.  It sold for $328.  

Do you have any tea-themed handbags, designer or otherwise? What's the most you would pay [or have paid] for a handbag?  The most I ever paid was $162 for my Mary Frances handbag, and I thought long and hard before paying that.   I guess how we spend our money all comes down to priorities.  Teapot purses fall in the 'novelty' category vs. 'practical' but they sure are fun for tea lovers.

One thing's for certain... t
he Internet sure does lead me into temptation sometimes.  ;-)

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Catching Up

I've been absent from my blog for over a week, and I finally have some time to catch up.  A few weeks ago I received a postcard from Shutterfly containing a coupon for unlimited free photobook pages plus 50% off of everything else.  This was an offer too good to pass up, so I immediately began the time consuming task of going through tangible photographs from pre-digital days [which required scanning], and digital photographs stored on my computer.  

I have an ongoing list of photo books I want to make [which presently totals 12], but since I've been having lunch with my high school girlfriends once a month, I decided this album should be about them: photographs from high school reunions, lunches, weddings, and tea outings with my best friend, Sandy.  Below is a screen shot of the cover I designed.  It's a bit distorted, but the actual cover won't be.

As usual there were too many photos for one book, so book II will be necessary.  This album is the maximum amount of pages [111 pages], so I was grateful for the unlimited pages promotion.  The $256.68 book was reduced to $80.01 with the promo codes.

My girlfriend, Sandy, came over last Tuesday [Aug. 10th] and spent the day working on the project with me.  Her hubby put all her digital photos from our tea outings on a zip drive, and she brought her seven scrapbook albums so I could scan any of her photos that I didn't have, and copy any photos on the zip drive.  

It was a fun walk down memory lane viewing all the photos.  We concluded we've been blessed to do many wonderful tea events together, and saddened that so many of the tearooms are now closed.

This is the 12th Shutterfly album I've made - a huge monetary investment for enjoyment and posterity. As is usually the case with technology, Shutterfly changed their photo album formatting since I made my last album, so it was a bit of trial and error before I got the hang of it, but I'm so happy it's done.  I sent it winging its way through cyberspace last Friday and it's scheduled to arrive Aug. 28th.

Sandy and I enjoyed spending the day together which included a lunch break.  I didn't think to take pictures.  It was a simple lunch of bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwiches with potato salad, and individual mini-angel food Bundt cakes covered with macerated strawberries, blueberries and whipped cream.  We had Harney & Sons Blueberry Green Tea with our meal.  I enjoyed this tea at our recent outing to Sweet Shalom tearoom [which held their last tea on August 8th as their beautiful Victorian house has sold], and I ordered the tea when I got home.  If you're into flavored green teas, this one's a definite winner.

I'm juggling multiple projects simultaneously right now, and they will be individual upcoming posts.  I worked both days last weekend which makes me grateful I normally have Sundays off.

It's been a tradition at our house for several years for the three youngest grandkids to spend a few days at our house in August, and while they're here their Papa takes them back to school shopping.  School will start back on August 30th, so we had to scurry around to fit it in this year.

We drove to Chelsea yesterday to pick up Izzy.  She had to work until 3:30, so we surprised her by going to lunch at Chelsea Burger where she works.  She's growing up so quickly, and will be a High School Junior this year, so these visits won't last much longer.

Chelsea is an old, quaint town as you can see by the building where Chelsea Burger is located. It used to be a tavern, and transitioned to a burger restaurant about a year ago.  The original sign from Seitz's Tavern still hangs inside, as well as the original counter.

Here's our sweet girl behind the order desk.  I ordered the Chelsea Burger Original.  Yum!

Grandson Landon sitting at the counter, which isn't used right now due to COVID.

The interior still has the original brick walls with one of them displays their logo.

When Izzy got off work we made our drive back to Warren.  We watched Karate Kid I and II last night before bed.  It had been so long since I saw them [the first one came out in 1984], it was like watching a new movie again.  Karate Kid III is on the agenda for tonight.

We went out to breakfast at Country Oven this morning [another tradition during their stay] and Papa and Izzy are shopping as I type this post.  She'll go back home tomorrow in time to clock-in at work at 3:30 p.m., and Jerry will bring granddaughter, Ellie, back for her turn. Landon will come the first part of next week.

How have you been spending your summer?