Thursday, February 29, 2024

Tonia's Victorian Rose Tearoom

Happy Leap Year Day!  I can't think of a better way to wrap up the month of February than by going to tea, and that's just what my girlfriend, Lori, and I did yesterday. 

I had heard that Tonia's Victorian Tearoom was closing on March 2nd, so I wanted to visit one last time.  I'm sad that another tearoom is closing, but Tonia said it was not her choosing.  The owners of the 1910, three-story Craftsman House at 118 W. 3rd Street in downtown Rochester, MI are selling it.

This was the first tearoom I visited after becoming 'smitten by tea' in 1998 and it was one of my first blog posts when I began blogging in 2012.  I've been there many times over the years with family and friends. Loretta Curry was the first owner who established the tearoom in 1995, and Tonia is the second owner who bought it in 2017.  Below is a photo of how it looked when I first visited in 1998.

A current photo taken yesterday after the house transitioned from Green to Blue.

I took my granddaughter, Tiffany, there for her 8th birthday in 1999.  It was her first tearoom experience. 


We went again in 2011 when she was 20.  Time sure changes us! 

~ Fall of 2016 with friends during the Michigan Tea Tour ~

~ The last visit under Loretta's ownership in Dec. 2016 ~

~ Spring of 2017 First visit under Tonia's ownership with girlfriend, Lori ~

~ Last visit under Tonia's ownership yesterday ~

~ With Tonia ~

The tearoom was bustling with guests when we arrived at 11:30.  So many wanting to have tea there one last time before it closes.  Lori and I chose the Duchess Tea and it was delightful. Our tea selection was Chocolate Strawberry Black Tea, and the meal began with a cup of Cream of Asparagus Soup.

Two-tiered server with savories and sweets.

By the time we left the crowd had thinned out but a few still lingered.

Tonia took us upstairs where we chatted for awhile.  She has several ideas and options after the tearoom closes so we definitely haven't seen the last of her creativity.  We wish her the best in all her future endeavors.

Monday, February 26, 2024

A Tea-themed Day!

I asked the Whitney's tea blender for an Irish Cream black tea to serve during March and her sample arrived in today's mail.  I brewed a pot for my hubby and me to taste and will take it to The Whitney tomorrow for management's opinion.  My hubby and I liked it.  It's perfect for St. Patrick's Day.

I got an Ebay gift card for my birthday, so today I searched for some tea-themed clothing and found a cute Quacker Factory top, placed a bid which the seller accepted, and it's on its way to me.  It'll be perfect for next Valentine's Day.  Love Quacker Factory [QVC] clothing - they're  well made and unique!

When I went to work last Saturday, the young gal who gives historical tours at the Whitney Mansion gave me a lovely silk teacup scarf from the Smithsonian Institute.  It's so pretty and I'm anxious to wear it to work this Saturday.

A photo of a teapot pantry came through my Facebook feed today - for the tea lover who has a house big enough for a tea-themed bathroom and kitchen!

Wishing you a tea-lightful week!


Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Happy Valentine's Day!

This has been a lovely Valentine's Day for me.  My hubby and I left home around noon for New Center One [Business Center] of Detroit.  It has been on my bucket list for awhile to visit the Peacock Room [Women's Clothing Boutique] on the first floor of the Fisher Building, so when my hubby asked what I wanted to do for Valentine's Day I didn't have to think very long.  It was a beautiful, sunny day for traveling the short distance [16 miles].

I love visiting old, historic buildings in Detroit.  The interiors are so beautiful.  Below is the Fisher Building as seen from East Grand Blvd. before crossing over Woodward Avenue to West Grand Blvd.  It's where most of WJR's broadcast studios are located, as well at the Fisher Theater.

~ Front Entrance ~

~ It's a Michigan Historic Site built in 1928 by Albert Kahn ~

 The fresco ceilings and art deco chandeliers are beautiful.  Pictures don't do them justice. 

I couldn't help being a shutterbug!

Mosaics on marble walls.  There are 40 different kinds of marble in the lobby.   No wonder the 30-story ornate building is known as Detroit's largest art object!

~ All the way down at the end of the first floor corridor is The Peacock Room ~

~ This furry, plush Valentine coat [not a bathrobe] was for sale ~

The interior of the boutique is beautiful and quite large.

Such a cute sweater.  But it would have been much too hot to wear when I was in Paris last August.

My Valentine bought me these dressy gloves.  They're the only thing I saw that tempted me, although there was a wide variety of fascinators, hats and tiaras, and they were all reasonably priced. 

When we left Detroit we stopped at a restaurant for a bite to eat, then came home.

Remember the heart-shaped charcuterie board I was searching for at Walmart?  A member of a Facebook charcuterie group posted a picture of her charcuterie arrangement on the same board this morning. Isn't the food artistry lovely?  The heart-shaped brie is from Aldi's.

Before we left for Detroit, the mailman delivered a Hudson's keychain I purchased on E-bay.  It wasn't expensive [$17.95 including shipping] and I'm thinking the building can be removed from the keychain and put on a necklace chain.  I haven't done a Hudson's presentation since before COVID, but I couldn't resist buying this inexpensive replica of the beloved department store.

And last, but not least, another handmade birthday card from Georgia was in today's mail.  Thank you, Angela!  I love the creativity of handmade cards.

I'd enjoy hearing how you spent your Valentine's Day, which is also Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent that leads us to Easter.

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Catching Up

Last weekend was a busy one.  Saturday was the Valentine's Chocolate Tea at The Whitney, a Bridal Tea and Mansion Tea. My manager told me to plan on 191 guests and we ended up serving 181 seated on all three floors.  I think it was the largest number since I've been there.  I wish I would have had time to take pictures at the Chocolate Tea but it was too busy.

Saturday was also the Chinese New Year - Year of the Dragon, but I was too tired to go out for Chinese food after work.  Marie Callender's Chicken Pot Pies were in the freezer, so that's what we had.  I did give a nod to China by drinking tea with my pot pie though.  ;-)

Sunday, after church, a group of 15 gathered at a restaurant for dinner together.  We were seated in a private room and the fellowship and food was wonderful.  My son, daughter-in-law, granddaughter, daughter and son-in-law were part of the group [seated on the right side of the table].  Some in the group have been endearing friends of ours for over 40 years.

The restaurant specializes in Polish food, so I almost felt like I was in Hamtramck again with more City Chicken and Pierogies.

It was also Super Bowl LVIII.  The San Francisco 49ers have been my son Jeremy's favorite team since he was very young, so this was a big game at his house.  They really got in the spirit of the game, all wearing 49ers jerseys.

If you watched the game you know it was a real nail-biter!  The score was neck and neck, but Kansas City won 25 to 22 in overtime.  Jeremy said in spite of the loss the sun came up Monday morning and all was well. 

Monday, on my way home from getting my mammogram and bone density test, I threw all caution to the wind [diet-wise] and stopped at the bakery to get my hubby and me a cannoli cream filled paczki - they're so much better than a jelly filled paczki.  We enjoyed eating them today in honor of Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday, or Shrove Tuesday - whichever day you choose to call it.  Paczki donuts are a Polish tradition and the last splurge before the sacrificial lenten season begins.  I'm not Polish, but I sure enjoy the Paczki tradition.

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day and my daughter and son-in-law's Fifth Wedding Anniversary.  Carrot Cake is Dave's favorite, so I make them a Carrot Cake every year on their anniversary.  We delivered it this afternoon.  I still had all my chocolate molding equipage and candy supplies on the counter from a recent project where I made 50 chocolate rose suckers, so I decided to decorate their cake with a chocolate rose [minus the sucker stick].

A Valentine's card arrived in yesterday's mail along with a hand-crafted birthday card that the US Postal Service took 10 days to deliver from a close-by city!!!

February is filled with many special days to celebrate.  Do you have special plans for Valentine's Day?

Thursday, February 8, 2024

More February Happenings

I received many Facebook messages, texts, emails, phone calls and cards for my birthday. Thank you one and all!   I received enough money in birthday gifts to buy myself a new food processor, and am looking forward to going shopping for one.

Two cards were tea-themed and one was beautifully handmade.  I used it to thank everyone on my Facebook page.   Beautiful work, Lois!

Yesterday I drove down to my hometown area to have lunch with my high school girlfriends at Angelina's - a Mexican restaurant.  One of the girls brought an 8-count box of Hostess cupcakes for my birthday and we each had one for dessert.  It was a fun outing on another beautiful day with temperatures in the high 40's.

Today I'm knee-deep in a project for The Whitney, but will close this post with another tea-themed bathroom.   If you enjoyed the teapot shower photo, here's one with teacup bathtubs. Who knew these were available for tea lovers!  ;-)