Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Lunch With a Special Friend

Monday I had the pleasure of meeting a dear friend for lunch - actually she's more like a second daughter since she's just three months younger than my daughter.  We met at P.F. Chang's at Somerset Mall in Troy, MI

I got there a little early before the lunch crowd began to arrive, and took some inside photos. A few minutes later all the empty tables were filled, and the place was bustling with activity.

I ordered a pot of White Tangerine tea to sip before Ruth arrived.

Predictably, I ordered my favorite, Sweet and Sour Chicken with Brown Rice.

Ruth's mum still lives in England, and when Ruth was visiting her last summer she sent back another Rington's Tea Caddy for me [pictured below].  Isn't it lovely?  It went on the living room display shelf with the other Rington's tea accoutrements she's given me.  Thank you, Elizabeth!

Ruth and I had a lot of catching up to do, and before we knew it almost three hours had lapsed. What a wonderful way to spend an afternoon!  I'll soon be writing about an honor that was bestowed upon her husband.

[Ruth and Me]

Ruth sent the beautiful birthday floral bouquet with the flower I had never seen before and asked if anyone knew its name.  Susan posted the answer, 'Pink Mink Protea'.  Thank you, Susan!  No wonder it's so unique and pretty - it has tea in its name!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Mad Hatter Tea Party in Northville, MI

When I arrived at Mill Race Village, I stopped at Cady Inn where the tea was to be held to take a few pre-tea party photos, then I went to the church to set up my hat display for the program which followed the tea.

The tables were set in keeping with the Alice in Wonderland theme.  They were three tickets shy of a sellout event.

 ~ Raffle Basket [left] and Door Prize [right] ~

Hats belonging to Vicky, the coordinator of the teas.

Notice the l-o-n-g hatpin below.  I told the ladies in my presentation that at the turn of the 20th century, hats were large and required giant hatpins up to 12 inches long to secure them on ladies' heads. At the same time, women began socializing unchaperoned, which made them vulnerable to the actions of undesirable men. Soon the hatpin became a weapon of defense and symbol of female empowerment.  After some injurious prickings, laws were passed to limit the length of hatpins.  As one Chicago politician said, "If women care to wear carrots and roosters on their heads, that is a matter for their own concern, but when it comes to wearing swords they must be stopped!" 

~ My hat display at the church ~

After I got all set up, I walked back to Cady Inn [a few doors away] and waited for the ladies to arrive.  I was asked to judge the hat contest and pick two winners 1] most unique and 2] best hat [prettiest].  Several ladies participated in the hat contest.

I LOVED the Jester hat below, and it was one of the top three in the most unique category.

~ The Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts ~

The young lady below is wearing her grandmother's hat and suit.  I know her grandma would have been proud if she could have seen her.

The winner for the most unique hat was Tillie, who decorated a top hat herself with things associated with Alice in Wonderland.  I didn't get a picture of the best hat/fascinator, but it was a beautiful black and white fascinator. Each lady won a ticket to the next historical society tea in May.


Below is Vicky, the caterer for the tea as well as the coordinator of them.

~  The tea meal was lovely.  ~

Sandwiches were Mad Hatter Chicken Salad w/Grapes on Cinnamon Raisin; King of Hearts Ham and Baby Greens w/Crasin Feta on light Rye; Catepillar Cucumber w/Chive Cream Cheese on Italian; and March Hare Egg Salad w/Olives on Wheat.

Tweedle Dee Tweedle Dum Cream Drop Scones w/Orange Marmalade and Clotted Cream. Desserts: White Knight Lemon Crisp Cookies; Queen of Hearts Strawberry Jam Tarts, Unbirthday Chocolate Cupcakes w/Butter Marshmallow Frosting. Cady House Tea was served with the meal. 

At the church, the podium was almost as tall as me, so I didn't stay behind it for the whole program.

The ladies were a wonderful, attentive audience, and it was a delightful afternoon.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Celebrating Another Birthday

Another birthday has come and gone, and the celebrating was fun.  On Friday night [the evening before my birthday] my hubby took me to Andiamo's Italian Restaurant - a place we reserve for special occasions.  It is pictured below on the cover of their dinner menu.

Once I find something I really like at a restaurant I rarely order anything else.  At Andiamo's we love their grilled portobello mushrooms with zip sauce for an appetizer.  I always say I'm going to try making them at home, but as yet I haven't done it.

And their yummy bread basket.

Chicken Marsala is my favorite and comes with soup or salad.  I chose Manhatten Clam Chowder. 

[Jerry and Me]

On Saturday morning I was out the door by 10:00 a.m. headed to Northville, for the Historical Society's Mad Hatter Tea Party.  [Tomorrow's Post]

When I arrived, Vicky, the caterer and coordinator of the teas greeted me with a cute birthday gift bag from World Market.

Inside was a tin of Harney's Birthday Tea that was created in honor of John Harney's 80th birthday in August 2010.  It's a blend of hibiscus, rosehips, decaf Ceylon black tea, raspberry, blueberry, pomegranate, and vanilla flavors, spearmint, peppermint, marigold petals, cornflowers and natural and artificial  flavors.  The aroma of the dry leaf [in sachets] is a delightful fruity scent.

And a floral handkerchief with the Language of the Handkerchief during Victorian Times. I'm sure it will come in handy for a future presentation, although I don't collect hankies - yet!  

Laura Lee, a friend who works for Vicky and member of Greenfield Village Herb Associates, also gave me a gift bag filled with lavender products - soap, sachet, and dryer bag.

When I returned home, two beautiful floral arrangements awaited me.

In the above arrangement were two beautiful flowers I have never seen before.  If you know the name, please tell.

Pictured below is the second floral arrangement, and a birthday cake from my son and daughter-in-law, Steve and Sharon.

I changed from dressy clothes into casual ones, and hurried off to my daughter Lori's for a delicious chicken and dressing dinner.

Dessert was a Sander's Hot Fudge Butter Pecan Ice Cream Puff.  Sander's was the name of a well-known Detroit bakery and confectionery that was sold to another candy company, but they still sell Sander's hot fudge and cream puffs.  Lots of fond memories taking the kids to Sander's for these treats when they were young.

I received several birthday cards - some tea themed, and some not, but all beautiful.  

The inside of Steve and Sharon's card revealed my gift from them - Afternoon Tea at the Plaza Hotel in New York City this spring.

Lori found a card with blue and white china on it and said, "Yep, that's Mom!"   

With the two Amazon gift cards I received I'll be ordering books. Thanks to everyone who made my birthday so special.  I am blessed to have such loving and wonderful people in my life!