Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Estate Sale Finds

My girlfriend, Lori, texted me yesterday to tell me about an estate sale in Warren about 15 minutes from my house.   She noticed there were lots of teacups and teapots in the sale and thought I might be interested.

I haven't been to an estate sale in a long time even though they're very plentiful in my area.  I quickly viewed all the photos and my first thought was I wouldn't go.  With the ladies' tea at church this Saturday, I figured I could make better use of my time at home, and I had just recently purchased a supply of teacups for The Whitney so they weren't in need of any right now.  Later in the day, however, I went back and gave the pictures a closer look and discovered there was a teapot from The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island and  A Cup of Christmas  Tea teacup.  Hmmm... maybe I would go afterall.

The sale didn't open until 9:30 a.m. but we got there around 8:00 o'clock in hopes of getting a low number that would allow us to enter the house with the first group.  As it turns out we were numbers 21 and 22 and were among the second group to be admitted.  I think this was the first Trident Way Estate Sale that I've gone to, but their prices were amazing.  Everything was priced to move quickly, even on opening day.

I could tell from the pictures that the items I wanted were in the family room on a table by the doorwall, so that's where I headed.  To my delight the teapot and teacup were both still sitting there waiting for me.

The Grand Hotel teapot was just $8, in perfect condition, and even has a porcelain tea infuser. It's hard to tell in the photo, but those are red geraniums on the front - the hotel's signature flower.  

I've stayed at the Grand Hotel three or four times [and blogged about it], and bought their teacup, pictured below at Afternoon Tea, but never got the teapot.

A Cup of Christmas Tea teacup from Tom Hegg's book was just $5 and in mint condition.  I have a couple already but was happy to add another to the collection.

I also saw a Sandy Clough Christmas Plaid teacup.  Since I was the only home party distributer in Southeastern Michigan for most of the time the company was in business, I wondered if the lady who lived in the house attended one of my parties???

Sitting on the table close to the teacup and teapot was a new tea-themed tea towel for just $3 so I couldn't pass it up.

We made a quick trip to the basement where I found a prop for the tea at church this coming Saturday.  The theme is 'Shoes With Godly Footsteps' so I thought this hat box would enhance the decor and help carry out the theme.

More than any other color, red shoes have always had a powerful aura.  They have been referred to as "follow me" shoes.

My check-out total was $21.  Not bad for everything I purchased.  Thank you, Lori, for telling me about the estate sale.  It was a fun way to end the last day of April.

Friday, April 26, 2024

Updated Blog Page Completed!

Work on my blog page is completed and I'm a happy blogger!  Special thanks to Austin Ryskamp for his technical skills and diligence in giving my blog a new and updated look.  There is now an option on the sidebar to have blog posts sent directly to your inbox.

I highly recommend Austin.

Contact Information:  
Email: ryskampaustin@gmail.com 
 Business line: 947-258-0506

Things have been busy in Detroit with the NFL Draft.  Yesterday an all-time Day #1 record was set with more than 275,000 fans in attendance.  Just look at that sea of "Honolulu Blue" jerseys, T-shirts, sweatshirts and jackets!

[Photo Courtesy of WXYZ TV]

And tomorrow things will be hopping in Louisville, Kenturcky at the 150th Kentucky Derby.  Have you ever attended a Kentucky Derby tea party?  I always thought it would be fun to host one.

[Internet Photo]

Monday, April 22, 2024

Spring and Bridal Teas

I've been working on a Ladies' Spring Tea at church which will be held on Saturday, May 4th.  Below is the flier with details.  I've asked for the day off at The Whitney.

In 2020 I was planning a Ladies' Spring Tea with a shoe theme called Meaningful Shoes, but it had to be cancelled due to COVID lockdown.  So here's hoping this one will take place as planned.

I spent yesterday afternoon working on the favors - gluing rosebuds on clear plastic high heel shoes that will contain pink M & M's.  They remind me of Cinderella's glass slipper.

Ladies will also receive a Footprints in the Sand poem bookmark.

Dorothy's ruby red slippers in the Wizard of Oz are probably the most famous shoes that come to mind and I will be using a replica pair as a prop at the tea.

Alice in Wonderland wore Mary Janes - remember that style?

I got a pair of bronze baby shoes from Ebay as a prop too - the first shoes an infant girl wears. But it's also a reminder to women that the infants will eventually be old enough to watch our footsteps and copy them.  We have a big responsibility to guide and teach them to walk godly paths.  

More posts about the tea after it happens.

Saturday was a VERY busy day at The Whitney.  Probably the busiest since I've been there and while I'm not sure what the restaurant's capacity is, we had to be very close to it.  

There were four bridal teas at 12:30 which utilized all but one smaller dining room on the first floor and one tea was on the second floor.   Each tea was beautifully decorated, but I was so busy I didn't have time to take pictures.  One of the servers took pictures of the tea in the Music Room and sent them to me to share.  Tis the season for bridal teas.

At 1:30 we served tea to 120 guests for Mansion Tea.  All total, tea was served to 241 guests.  I kept busy making sure the urns on all three floors were filled with tea for everyone.  We are now serving Mansion Tea on Fridays at 1:00 p.m. as well as Saturday, so I don't have to worry about boredom setting in anytime soon!   

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Almost Done!

My blog page update is almost done, but a few changes and tweaks still remain so don't critique it just yet.

The beginning of March I was in Meijer's store and saw some cute women's tea-themed pajamas, but I didn't buy them that day.  I was back in the store today to pick up a prescription, and decided to go over to the women's sleepwear department.  To my delight they still had the pj's but they were now on clearance.  The two bottoms [one a solid aqua color and the other a pink teacup print] were $25.20 [origionally $36] and the solid aqua color top was $12.60 [origionally $18].  I didn't pass them up this time.

Close-up of the print.

If you're in need of some cute, light-weight summer pj's and have a Meijer's store nearby, check them out.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Bridgerton - Part II

The Bridgerton Netflix series is based on the books written by New York Times best selling author, Julia Quinn.  The eight Regency romance novels were released from 2000 to 2006. Wikipedia says they follow the eight siblings of the noble Bridgerton family as they navigate London high society in search of love, adventure and happiness.

Netflix explains it, "During the Regency era in England, eight close-knit siblings of the powerful Bridgerton family attempt to find love."

A 2021 Vogue magazine article says thanks to Bridgerton, fancy tea sets became the new home must-have.  Humm... seems like TV viewers realized what tea lovers have known for a very long time!  The author of the article concurs with Netflix saying the series chronicles the love lives and misdeeds [of which there are plenty!] of the Bridgerton family, while Queen Charlotte ordered her subjects to both sip and spill the tea.  The author described the Regency Era in England as a period of art and lavish ornamentation, which is definitely evident in the episodes.

For tea lovers, this series is filled with tea scenes.  As a result, many viewers were inspired to do tea related Google searches, and Pinterest said their top term of "elegant tea sets" rose to 65% when the Bridgerton series came out.  

Photos below are courtesy of Netflix.

Violet Bridgerton - the Dowager Viscountess of Bridgerton

Queen Charlotte

Kate Sharma

Knowing Bath and Body Works collaborated with Netflix to create a product line in keeping with the series, I couldn't help wondering if a tea company had done the same thing since so much tea drinking occurs in the series.  A Google search revealed there is indeed a company, and it shouldn't be surprising who they are since they created an entire line of teas to coordinate with the Downton Abbey series.

When I visited their website I was amazed at the extensive limited edition Bridgerton products. The catchy phrase they use is Sip Like a Royal, but it's more than tea in their 28-product line-up.  There's Bridgerton White Honey [giving a nod to the bee that shows up frequently], Bridgerton Fruit Preserves, Mugs, Gift Sets, Books and an assortment of teas such as:
Bridgerton Duke & Duchess Honey Breakfast Tea
Young Queen Charlotte Amethyst Berry Tea
Bridgerton Anthony & Kate Spiced Chai
 Bridgerton Featherington Blood Orange Mimosa
And a popular tea in the Bridgerton line is Bridgerton's Queen's Cake Vanilla Fruit Tea 
an Herbal Tea that comes in a tin of 36 tea bags.

Republic of Tea are purveyors of fine teas, so visit their website and check out their Bridgerton products.  

If you're a Bridgerton fan or have attended a Bridgerton themed tea party, I'd love to hear about it.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024


Bridgerton is a Netflix original TV series that debuted in 2020.  The setting is the Regency era. Season 1 Episode 1 opens in London, England in 1813.  Season 3 will premiere on May 13th.

[Netflix Bridgerton Photo]

I enjoy the costumes, pomp [social season, balls, etc.], tea scenes with beautiful china, and British sites [Hampton Court Palace among others], but Netflix informs viewers that language, nudity, sex, violence, smoking, and substances are prevalent. Why? Though described as a historical romance, some scenes would have been better with innuendo leaving viewers to draw their own conclusions rather than graphic portrayal. Just sayin'!

Bath and Body Works collaborated with Netflix to create five scents inspired by scenes, characters, key icons and moments from the series that's called the Bridgerton Collection.  The collection was launched on March 25th and will continue for one year.  Bath and Body Works says scent is the most evocative of all the senses, and they will take the Netflix series to a new level with their candles, fragrance mist, body care products, hand soaps & sanitizers and fragrance plugs.

When I saw their line of Queen Charlotte's Tea products [the British Queen when Season 1 begins] talked about on social media, I knew I had to pay a visit to my local Bath and Body Works store.  The display is great!

The color palette of Queen Charlotte's Tea collection is turquoise.

My teal bathroom is the only room in the house that doesn't have a suitable tea accessory [much less something in a matching color], aside from a small, handmade teapot bar of soap.  

So imagine my delight when I saw the teacup fragrance plug [$19.95] named Queen Charlotte's Tea.  It not only makes my bathroom smell good but the fragrance plug doubles as a nightlight.

The fragrance refills are $7.95

The coordinating hand soap and pump dispenser is $8.95

Since these items are limited editions, I decided to go back to the store today to buy some extra fragrance refills, and I was delighted to find them on sale for $3.95.

While researching the Bath and Body Works Bridgerton collection online I discovered there is a cute little teapot hand sanitizer holder.  It's sold out online, but still available in stores for $8.95 and the hand sanitizer insert is $1.95.  Of course it had to come home with me too!

It's perfect for attaching to purses or backpacks.

I was shocked to see the mark-up on Poshmark [$22], E-bay [$18.50] and Mercari [$15]. If you're interested, go to your nearest Bath and Body Works store as soon as possible before they run out.

That's enough Bridgerton for one post, but I have one more to write so please check back.

Sunday, April 14, 2024

112th Anniversary of the Titanic's Sinking

On April 14, 1912, the sinking of the Titanic took place.  More than two miles deep in the Atlantic ocean, off the remote coast of Newfoundland, sits the remains of a ship that was supposed to be unsinkable.  The Titanic has captured public interest for 112 years.  I couldn't comprehend the vastness of the Atlantic - both majestic and foreboding - until I sailed on the Queen Mary 2 from New York to Southampton last August, and I couldn't help thinking about the Titanic passengers.

Today, we don't celebrate the sinking of the ship, we commemorate the 1,517 passengers who perished.

Many have seen the 1997 Titanic movie [3 hrs. 15 minutes long - not quite as long as Gone With theWind] starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio.  And if you're like me you even have DVDs.  I have several books too since I've assisted with Titanic events and a presentation.

Here's some fun statistics:  The Titanic set sail with 3,000 teacups, 1,200 teapots, 6,000 teaspoons, and 800 lbs. of tea.  First class passengers were served the best available, Twinings, and probably English Breakfast or Earl Grey since they were the original makers of the famous Earl Grey blend.  The Second class passengers might have been given a choice between China and Indian tea.  And Third class passengers would have been served unbranded tea bought in bulk from a wholesaler. 

Today Harney & Sons blends a Titanic tea that is quite good.  I have replica teacups from 1st, 2nd, and 3rd class to chose from when sipping my commemorative tea.

For Downton Abbey fans, you will remember Season One, Episode 1 opened with Lord Grantham reading the newspaper that informed him the Titanic had sunk.

In 2005 I helped tearoom owner, Cheryl Nix, with a "Last Dinner on the Titanic" event.  My son, Steve, [a Titanic History buff] portrayed Second Officer, Charles H. Lightoller.  

As a minister he has since used the oceanliner's sinking as an illustration in a sermon... More than only 683 passengers could have been saved, but the majority of them had the false hope that the ship was unsinkable and they didn't heed the warnings until it was too late.

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Celebrating Gone With the Wind's 85th Anniversary

Are you a Gone With the Wind movie fan?  To commemorate its 85th Anniversary theaters are showing the 3 hour 58 minute film tomorrow, April 10th.

I have blogged about the movie several times previously, and had the privilege of meeting Kathleen Maraccio, Michigan's foremost expert on all things pertaining to Gone With the Wind at two of her presentations.

I think the first time I saw the film in the theater was for its 35th Anniversary, and I have both VHS tapes and DVDs of the movie.

For its 80th Anniversary my hubby and I saw it at the retro Redford Theater in 2019.

I've attended as well as hosted Gone With the Wind teas, and while I don't have near the knowledge or memorabilia that Kathleen has, I was privileged to give two Gone With the Wind presentations for residents at Senior Citizen Retirement Communities.

A highlight was touring the Gone With the Wind Museum in Marietta, Georgia with a group of tea loving ladies in March of 2018.

Below is a photograph I purchased of Vivian Leigh from a scene in the movie.

I won't be going to see the movie in the theater tomorrow, but I may make some popcorn and put in my DVDs to watch it on my TV screen.  Will you be going to the theater to see it?

Monday, April 8, 2024

Under Construction

After 12 years of blogging, a 'facelift' was needed - past due actually!  A highly-skilled IT guy is in the process of creating a new design, and I think you'll like the look when he's finished.   I'll continue to blog while my site is under construction, so please be patient.

Eclipse 2024

There's a lot of buzz about today's solar eclipse, and Detroiters will be able to see the near-total eclipse this afternoon. 

GoodLifeTea.com drew a parallel of the solar eclipse to tea brewing [anticipation, temporal beauty and satisfaction].

Tea companies have created tea blends to sip during the eclipse.  Adagio Tea has two signature blends called Solar Eclipse Delight and Total Solar Eclipse with descriptions of dark and mysterious flavors.  Blue Monkey Tea has an Eclipse Tea with a deep dark color to match the darkness of the eclipse time.  There are probably other tea blenders who have come up with eclipse blends as well.

Yesterday my hubby and I traveled to Ann Arbor to attend the church service where our eleven-year-old granddaughter made the decision to be baptized, signifying her acceptance of Jesus as her Lord and Savior.  It was especially meaningful, because her dad [our son] was the one who baptized her.

It reminded me of the contemporary worship song, How He Loves, that talks about being eclipsed by glory, when we realize how beautiful God is and how great His affections are for us.   We are so thankful Ellie has made the commitment to live for Jesus.  

It is dangerous to look at the solar eclipse without taking specific precautions, but it's beautiful to see the Son through all the ways He expresses His love for us without any precautions - anytime, anywhere.

Afterwards we all went out to dinner together.  It was a wonderful day.

~ Jerry [Papa], Me [Nana] and Ellie ~

Me and Ellie top row; Lori [our daughter] Samantha [Ellie's mom and our daughter-in-law, and Izzy [Ellie's sister and our granddaughter] bottom row.

Jerry, Landon [Ellie's brother and our grandson] top row;
Jeremy [Ellie's dad and our son] & Dave [our son-in-law] bottom row.

Have a good week!