Sunday, March 31, 2024

Happy Easter - He Is Risen!

It's been a busy few days for me but I wanted to write this post before the calendar welcomes the month of April.  I hope you had a wonderful Easter Sunday celebrating our Risen Lord!  It was a chilly, overcast day in Michigan, but the SON was shining brightly and His love warmed our hearts.

You may remember my post of March 10th when I said my hubby and I went to Frankenmuth, MI to pick-up some Easter dishes I purchased from a lady thru Facebook Marketplace.  I was so anxious to use them when I had two couples over for dinner on Good Friday.  I didn't post pictures sooner because I wanted my guests to see them in person first rather than in an Internet post.  I had so much fun with the tablescape and menu, and am grateful to my girlfriend, Lori, who took photos and shared them with me.  

Isn't Sydney, the bunny's name on the china, cute?  The dishes are by 222 Fifth.  The pastel colors are so perfect for spring.  So happy Marketplace allowed me to complete my set.

I really wanted to service my Cream of Asparagus soup in the adorable bunny bread bowls I saw on the Internet.

I gave making them a valiant try... 

But mine just didn't look as pretty as the Internet photo so I scrapped the idea and served the soup in china bowls instead.  Below they're sitting in a large ziplock baggie because I couldn't make myself put them down the disposal just yet.  But the time expended wasn't wasted because I learned some important tips that will hopefully make them turn out better next time.

Everyone had their own menu card that I had made up at Snapfish.

Once everyone was seated, I removed the floral bunny centerpiece and replaced it with my Lazy Susan that contained five salads from the "bunny patch" - Marinated Cauliflower Salad; Carrot Salad, Asian Cabbage Salad; Broccoli Salad; and Three Bean Marinated Salad. I received the Lazy Susan at my bridal shower 58 years ago, so it was fun to be able to use it again.

A plate of Deviled Eggs

I made Resurrection [Empty Tomb] Rolls.  I blogged about how to make them in Easter of 2013, but the nutshell version is you dip a large marshmallow in melted butter and roll it in cinnamon sugar, and wrap roll dough around it.  As the roll bakes, the marshmallow melts giving the roll a hollow center - hence the empty tomb.  It's a great visual for sharing the Easter story with children.  My girlfriend took a photo of her 'empty tomb' roll after she bit into it.

There are no photos of the main course - Chicken with Fettuccine Alfredo.   Dessert was Carrot Cake.  The Peeps Race car added Easter whimsy, and it's a perfect edible Easter project for children.  My three youngest grandchildren have enjoyed making them in previous years.

We had such a nice evening fellowshipping together.   The men at one end of the table and the ladies at the other.  No photo of the ladies though.

The pleasure of their company was a wonderful gift in itself, but both couples brought me beautiful flowers.

Saturday was a work day for me at The Whitney and I was told we had reservations for 160 guests for tea.  As it turned out we had 146 which was still a crowd.  Ever since I've worked there I've tried to wear holiday attire for all the holidays, so below is the Easter Egg dress I wore on Saturday. The guests loved it, but I thought it was a little too 'festive' to wear to church.  ;-)

My hubby and I went to the 11:00 a.m. church service where Lori's husband took the photo below of the two of us before the sanctuary filled with attendees for the second service.

After church we went out to dinner with our son, Steve, and his family and our daughter, Lori, and son-in-law, Dave.  The restaurant was so crowded we couldn't get a table for 10 until after 4:00 p.m. so we had to be split up between two tables.  Lori took the picture below of Jerry and me just before we left the restaurant.

That's my recap of Good Friday thru Easter Sunday, and tomorrow we begin the month of April.  How can that be already???

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Linking this post to for Tablescape Thursday

Monday, March 25, 2024

Petals Plates and a Royal Albert Teacup

I hope you had a great Palm Sunday weekend.  I don't normally go to estate/liquidation sales on Sunday, but yesterday was an exception.  Last Thursday I received an email from Tonia, the owner of the now closed Tonia's Victorian Tearoom, telling me she was having an estate/liquidation sale on Sunday to sell her tearoom equipment. 

I have a service for eight collection of Petals dishware made by Federal Glass [1940's- 1960's] that was lacking just three luncheon plates. My friend, Lori, [and her husband, Rick] have been searching antique stores and estate sales for a long time trying to find them for me. Tonia's tearoom used to have some of the luncheon plates displayed in the front windows. When we were there for tea on February 28th, Lori asked Tonia about the plates.  She didn't offer to sell them that day, but in her email, she said, 'Tell your friend I have some Petals plates for her."

Lori and I both went to the sale which started at 1:00 o'clock.  Lori gifted me with the three Petals luncheon plates to complete my collection [I'm so blessed to have a friend like her!], and I went to see about acquiring some teapots for The Whitney.

When Lori and I arrived no one else was waiting in line for the sale, but that soon changed with a line almost all the way back to Main Street.  I took pictures to give to Tonia for her memory book.

It didn't work out for me to buy any teapots for The Whitney, but all was not lost.  Tonia had many beautiful teacups for sale, and a black Royal Albert Floral Series, Dogwood, caught my eye.  All her teacups were $15, so the black Royal Albert came home with me.

I pray you have a blessed Holy Week as we approach Easter Sunday and our Lord's triumphant resurrection.

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Happy First Day of Spring!

It's 32 degrees in Southeastern Michigan today, so it doesn't feel very much like spring, but it's coming!  I have some spring bunnies on my dining room table that I'm enjoying.

Recently one of my blog readers told me to view the spring display, Tea and Tulips, in the Conservatory & Botanical Gardens at Las Vegas Bellagio's Resort and Casino.  It will be there thru May 18th.  It's a tea party wonderland.  Enjoy the Internet photos below.  Several videos can also be found online.

Each flower bed display is themed after four tea varieties.  The West Bed is Rose Hip Tea, featuring a young girl sitting on a crescent moon holding a teapot suspended above a rocky waterfall. A 30-foot hot air balloon hovers above the water, and an open-air green house sits next to it which doubles as the conservatory's exclusive dining area.  Wouldn't you love to have Afternoon Tea there!!!

The North Bed is Chamomile Tea.  A girl wearing a crown of daffodils sits on a teapot sharing stories with a rabbit.  Monarch butterflies, honeybees, yellow roses, daffodils and chamomile flowers add beauty to the flower bed.

The East Bed features Ginger Peach Tea.  Two maidens overlook the tea party scene with a 27-foot tall garden folly showcasing the signature Bellagio "B".

And lastly the South Bed features Lavender Tea.  An 18-ft. tall teapot is suspended above water and is surrounded by hummingbirds, lavender, wisteria, hibiscus and pansies.

12,000 potted plants and flowers are used in the display, which took 100 people working 24 hours a day for six days to construct the beautiful display.

It's a sip of spring!  If you're planning a trip to Las Vegas before May 18th be sure to put the stunning Tea and Tulips display on your itinerary.  It's free to the public.

Sunday, March 17, 2024

St. Patrick's Day 2024

I hope you're enjoying St. Patrick's Day.  It's a bit different when it falls on a Sunday. Yesterday was a work day at The Whitney, so I didn't do any advance meal prep.  As always, Sunday mornings is attending worship service at church, so it was around 12:30 when I got in my kitchen to begin preparing our St. Patrick's Day dinner.   I decided it was going to be a 'progressive dinner' to keep hunger pangs away.       

In a recent recipe e-mail from Paula Deen to her followers, she featured Shepherd's Pie Stuffed Potatoes.  She suggested air-frying the potatoes, but I oped to bake mine.  I put them in the oven to bake, while I started making the Reuben Soup.  It's a delicious recipe that I got from a tearoom cookbook and I've made it several years on St. Patrick's Day.

When the soup was done, I called hubby to the table for the first course of our 'progressive dinner.'  I was a bit lazy this year and didn't set a fancy table - just the bare necessities, but I did give a nod to St. Patrick's Day with some dishware and a few figurines.

When The Whitney's tea blender blended our Irish Cream black tea to serve throughout the month of March, she gifted me with a complimentary half lb. bag, so we had Irish Cream black tea to go with our soup.

After the soup course, I started working on the meat filling to go inside the baked potato shells.  I scooped the potatoes from the shells, mashed them, and began assembling the stuffed potato. Since everything was cooked they only had to go in the oven long enough to melt the cheese on top.  My hubby returned to the table for course #2 of the 'progresive dinner.'  The potatoes were yummy and would be a nice savory for a tea party using a smaller potato.  I have served Shepherd's Pie in au gratin dishes before, but this presentation is a nice alternative.

The last course was Irish Soda Bread.  I always make the recipe from the Silver Palate Cookbook, but this year I decided to try a new recipe from the Internet, and it didn't disappoint.  The only thing missing was the Kerrygold Irish Butter that I forgot when I was shopping.  We had to settle for American butter!  ;-)  Currants were hard to find so I had to substitute raisins.  I should have ordered them online and will next time.

A slice of Irish Soda Bread is a close cousin to a scone [in my opinion].

When we took our last bite of Irish Soda Bread, I declared the 'progressive dinner' was over and I was relaxing the rest of the day [after cleaning up the kitchen].  I enjoyed prepping and eating all the Irish food and tomorrow I'll return to my low-carb diet!   Even though my mom was of Irish descent and very proud of her Irish heritage, I don't ever remember her celebrating St. Patrick's Day by making traditional Irish dishes.  It's a special day to me and I always enjoy celebrating it.

I saw many Irish blessings posted on Facebook today as well as quotes from St. Patrick.  He was a remarkable Christian missionary and hero of the faith, with an inspiring legacy.  One of his prayers is good for all Christians today:

"Christ above me, Christ in front of me, Christ to my right, Christ to my left, Christ below me, Christ behind me, Christ within me, Christ in my every thought, Christ in my every word, Christ in my every deed."

How have you celebrated St. Patrick's Day?

Friday, March 15, 2024

Lunch at Presley's

Last month, when my daughter asked me where I'd like to have lunch for my birthday, I said Presley's downtown Detroit in the David Whitney building.  Their opening was delayed until February 26th, when Lori would be in California.  I said I didn't mind waiting because I really wanted to go to the new restaurant.

She picked me up at 1:00 0'clock today for our reservations at Presley's.  We enjoyed the restaurant very much as well as seeing the beautiful foyer of the David Whitney building again. The restaurant is named after the owner's oldest daughter, Presley. 

Below is one of three entrances into the David Whitney building [from the three different connecting streets it faces].  

Presley's has an outside entrance on Woodward Avenue, but we chose to enter throught the foyer of the David Whitney building [photo below].

~ Beautiful David Whitney Foyer ~

~ Interior of Presley's ~

We were seated in a booth, and since it was past the lunch hour, there wasn't a lot of hustle and bustle.  We took advantage of the quiet time to enjoy each other's company and get caught up.

Lori ordered shrimp and grits and I ordered a chicken salad.  Both were very good.

Before we left our server gave each of us a postcard of the David Whitney Building and a small complimentary bag of chocolate chip cookies baked fresh on the premises every morning.

Then we went out onto Woodward Avenue for a few more pictures.  It was a beautiful day and fun to be in 'The D' with my daughter.

~ Woodward Avenue Entrance to Presley's ~

The crane in the background is the construction of tower on the J.L.Hudson site that when completed will be the second tallest building in Detroit and the state.  It is set to open in 2025.

Thanks for a great afternoon, Lori!